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The Daily Word of Righteousness
Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for him: fret not thyself because of him who prospereth in his way, because of the man who bringeth wicked devices to pass. (Psalms 37:7)
To be able to rest in the Lord and to wait patiently for Him this is the mark of Christian maturity as I see it.
One cannot possibly enter the Kingdom of God apart from the exercise of considerable patience. We pray, do the will of God, and then wait! wait! wait!
Satan tempts us to jump off the gable of the Temple. Satan urges us to come down from the cross. "Come down you loser. Can't you see everyone is prospering except you?"
Lately there has been a rash of teaching that we can have what we want now if we will exercise "faith." This teaching is so opposed to the way of God that it is not worth further discussion.
We enter the Kingdom of God through much tribulation. Tribulation works patience. Patience works its perfect work in us.
God did not put us in this world to be happy but to learn the ways of God. This fact is not widely understood. People seek happiness when they should be seeking the Kingdom of God and His righteousness. One cannot pursue happiness in this world without losing his integrity, without betraying other people, without sinning against God.
God wants us to be happy and we shall know the fullness of joy at His right hand. But first we must come to know the Lord. If we would know the Lord we must submit to His rending and tearing of us and then the bandaging and healing. There is no other way to get acquainted with God.
When we decide to rest in the Lord and wait patiently for Him we find ourselves surrounded with people who are prospering far more than we. Yet they sometimes are bending the rules. We place ourselves at a disadvantage by waiting for God. Others charge ahead "doing God's work."
We are not speaking of passivity. Waiting on the Lord is not a passive state in which we flop around waiting for "the Spirit to move us." The person that takes this approach will soon find himself in classic deception, unable to make a clear decision about anything.
Rather we are referring to praying and waiting until we are pretty sure we know what God wants. Even then we can be deceived and so we must move cautiously, watching carefully to see what kind of fruit our action is bearing.
Joshua's one mistake was not to seek the Lord in what seemed to him to be an obvious decision. There is no such thing as an obvious decision. The Christian who takes something for granted without asking the Lord will soon wish he hadn't.
And so here we are, waiting patiently on the Lord while others rush about working the moves, applying the principles of "church growth."
Our church is small enough that I know everyone by name, even the little children. This is the best part of being a pastor. How could you do this if you had two thousand people? I expect the Lord would make it work somehow.
The Lord said He would build His own Church. Either He will or He won't.
I'm betting He will. Others can play church politics if they want to. They can slander, cause division, seek their own glory. They certainly prosper while doing this.
But I like a church regardless of its size where there is simple down-home integrity and love. Others can make a big splash but I have decided to rest in the Lord and wait patiently for Him.
I wonder what He will do!