"And the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush: and he looked, and, behold, the bush burned with fire, and the bush was not consumed" (Exodus 3:2)
Is it not true that for most of us who call ourselves Christians there is no real experience? We have substituted ideas for an arresting encounter; we are full of religious notions, but our great weakness is that for our hearts there is not one there.
Whatever else it embraces, true Christian experience must always include a genuine encounter with God. Without this, religion is but a shadow, a reflection of reality, a cheap copy of an original once enjoyed by someone else of whom we have heard. It cannot but be a major tragedy in the life of any man to live in a church from childhood to old age and know nothing more real than some synthetic god compounded of theology and logic, but having no eyes to see, no ears to hear, and no heart to love.
We who experience God in this day may rejoice that we have in Him all that Abraham or David or Paul could have; indeed the very angels before the throne can have no more than we, for they can have no more than God and can want nothing apart from Him. And all that He is and all that He has done is for us and for all who share the common salvation.
Lord, may I experience Your presence in such a real way today that I'll feel like taking off my shoes, because I'll know I'm on holy ground. Amen
Made for Higher Worlds
"Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth" (Colossians 3:2)
God has revealed Himself many times and in many ways to assure men and women made in His image that there is another and a better world than this vale of tears we refer to as home.
When people around us learn that we are involved in a spiritual kingdom not yet visible, they think we are prime candidates for a mental institution. But this we know: Those same people around us are subject to the cruel tyranny of material and temporal things - things that will decay and pass away. No world dictator ever ruled his cowering subjects with any more fierce and compulsive domination that the material, visible things rule the men and women of this world.
Of all the calamities that have been visited upon this world and its inhabitants, the willing surrender of the human spirit to materialistic values is the worst! We who were made for higher worlds are accepting the ways of this world as the ultimate. That is a tragedy of staggering proportions.
We who were meant to commune with the Creator God, with the angels, archangels and seraphim, have decided instead to settle down here. As well might the eagle leave his lofty domain to scratch in the barnyard with the common hens.
It's so easy, Lord, to become enamored with and ensnared by the things of this barnyard. Help me to be more lofty in my affections today. Amen
~A. W. Tozer~