I visited a familiar book today. One that I’ve long held near and dear to my heart. One that I put on the shelf after a year and soon find that it’s time to pull it back off again. One that inspires me to be better than I am and necessitates that I look beyond myself. One that slowly peels back the layers of truth such that I can handle the rawness of my humanity. This book, My Utmost for His Highest, by Oswald Chambers, is my all-time favorite devotional.
|A must-have for your library!
Today’s entry is entitled: “Have you ever been alone with God?” For me, the answer is a resounding “Yes!!!” …but…. the interesting thing is – I was alone with Him during periods of my life that I would rather not have experienced. Some of my most intimate times alone with God have been because of despair and disappointment, heartbreak and sorrow. Yet, the devotional today reveals something that I know to be true – it was a part of God’s plan. He allowed those events in my life to draw me closer – to tune me in to Him and not the things of the world. Not other people. Just my Lord. How precious. He loves me so much that even as I have chased after other things, He still wants to spend time with me. Wow.
For me, it’s profound; for you can spend your days thinking that you are wanted and loved by people only to find out the opposite is true. Some of you have experienced this, perhaps in relationships or even in your families. It’s painful no matter how we may try to sugar coat it. It tastes bitter. It feels cold. But God… No matter what, He wants that alone time with us. Isn’t that awesome!?!! The Sovereign Lord of the Universe wants to be alone with you and with me.
I want to give my utmost. And to do so, I’ve got to get alone with Him on a consistent basis – just because of Who He is and not because of something that has happened to me. Drawing closer. Shutting out the world. That’s what I endeavor to do more and more. How about you? Will you accept the invitation to quiet time with the Lord?
I love having my devotional book handy but if you don’t have it, you can read it daily, for free, online. Here is the link to the devotional page: http://utmost.org/ Or, just because I love you, you can stay on this site, and keep reading. I copied this from the site today:
January 12th: When they were alone, He explained all things to His disciples
Our Solitude with Him. Jesus doesn’t take us aside and explain things to us all the time; He explains things to us as we are able to understand them. The lives of others are examples for us, but God requires us to examine our own souls. It is slow work— so slow that it takes God all of time and eternity to make a man or woman conform to His purpose. We can only be used by God after we allow Him to show us the deep, hidden areas of our own character. It is astounding how ignorant we are about ourselves! We don’t even recognize the envy, laziness, or pride within us when we see it. But Jesus will reveal to us everything we have held within ourselves before His grace began to work. How many of us have learned to look inwardly with courage?
We have to get rid of the idea that we understand ourselves. That is always the last bit of pride to go. The only One who understands us is God. The greatest curse in our spiritual life is pride. If we have ever had a glimpse of what we are like in the sight of God, we will never say, “Oh, I’m so unworthy.” We will understand that this goes without saying. But as long as there is any doubt that we are unworthy, God will continue to close us in until He gets us alone. Whenever there is any element of pride or conceit remaining, Jesus can’t teach us anything. He will allow us to experience heartbreak or the disappointment we feel when our intellectual pride is wounded. He will reveal numerous misplaced affections or desires— things over which we never thought He would have to get us alone. Many things are shown to us, often without effect. But when God gets us alone over them, they will be clear.
So, again I ask you, “Will you accept the invitation to quiet time with the Lord?”.
Have a God-honoring day!,
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