[Humbling: but they have not all obeyed the gospel]
Not long ago I wrote a piece called The House that God Rebuilt, its theme being, that no matter how small the beginnings, God loves to see the work begin. It’s focus was on how we’d have to go through some renovations in the process of becoming what God wants.
From experience, the narrow way that we must travel, truly is a narrow way, but it’s far from being narrow minded. In fact, Scripture tells us that we must become like little children. It also points out that those who don’t, won’t enter the Kingdom of God. Becoming children does take some housework. We must do our chores. There are always things in our closets that need to be tossed out to make room for Jesus. If we aren’t open to listening and obeying, however, we won’t be open to change. Instead, we’ll stubbornly remain who we are. This rebelliousness won’t work. Change is mandatory. We can’t do this on our own either; it takes the power of God. This is why we must be willing to take His hand; His instruction; His correction; and His help.
“And he said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.” — Matthew 18:3
The journey does require faith like a child and we will indeed be tested. The heart and mind are of top priority to God because the testing of our faith produces the character that God desires to see flourish in us. To become that well behaved child that God wants, we may go through some valleys that can feel as if God has abandoned us. Know that He hasn’t! He will never abandon us, neither in the valley, nor in the desert or the wilderness. Even in these dark places He’s still working–watching over us to make sure that His words come true. (Jeremiah 1:12)
Though these times in our life may be a challenge to go through, all of our hills and valleys contribute to our progress. Fighting God’s will can delay and even halt that progress for a time, and some “Pilgrims” even turn back on their journey, but we do not belong to those who shrink back, and are destroyed, but to those who have faith and are saved. (Hebrews 10:39). For clarification, to shrink back means to turn away from God.
We can rest assured, however, that God will take care of all of our needs through even this humbling and testing, as He did for the Israelites on their exodus from Egypt. We do have an advantage that they didn’t have: a greater knowledge and a deeper understanding of what to expect along the way. In my opinion this knowledge is worth so much more than gold. We should take great joy and comfort in this treasure. God not only provides the necessities, He also provides those who can help us to get past our hurdles, should we hit a barrier. We always have the comfort and help of the Holy Spirit, also.
Becoming children doesn’t happen overnight. We can be a very stubborn and unruly bunch just as the Israelites were. Humbling, like anything else, comes with time and following Jesus’ Who is our own humble example.
To those who refuse to humble themselves, Jesus says this: “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.” (Matthew 7:21) This is what it means to humble ourselves before God: we must turn away from who we are or who we’ve become and instead commit our lives to doing what pleases God.
Thankfully, faith has already been mapped out for us so as long as we keep the map open before us and communicate with our Guide we will never truly get lost. God always goes with us and before us, supplying everything we’ll ever need along the way. He will help us when we stumble so that we won’t fall, for He steadies us with His own hand. (Psalm 37:24-26) All we have to do then is trust this; walk in obedience; and keep following Him, for it’s Jesus Himself Who leads the way. (John 14:6)
If you’ve left the tracks, now would be a great time to get moving again. Pick up your knapsack and take your Father’s hand. He loves you and wants to give you every good and perfect gift, but don’t be fooled; don’t blame God when you’ve been pulled away by your own evil desires. (James 1:12-17) Satan will tempt us, and we may fall into that temptation, but thankfully there’s always a way out: the truth. God made this way when Jesus accepted death on the cross. He is the way, the truth and the life so anyone who chooses to repent of their sins, carrying their cross as Jesus did is a true child of God. To carry ones cross is to accept death. We must die to ourselves daily.
This is what it takes to become children: we must accept that God is our Father and that we need His guidance and correction. How we come to the Father is through accepting His Son, Jesus Christ. We reject our sins and choose to follow Him, receiving forgiveness for all that we’ve done and who we’ve been. This is for our own good; It’s for our protection. Without Jesus we are like sheep without a Shepherd. (Mark 6:34) Because our Lord takes compassion on those who are lost, as His followers, we should have this compassion also.
“When Jesus went ashore, He saw a large crowd, and He felt compassion for them because they were like sheep without a shepherd; and He began to teach them many things.” –Mark 6:34 ❤
If we choose not to humble ourselves were making a sad mistake, not only for ourselves, but also for those who still need to hear about Jesus. Why? Because more workers need to be sent. Not all who should be becoming children are becoming what they’ve been called to become. We must walk as Jesus walked. If we don’t, we aren’t being obedient to the gospel.
Feeling lost and in need of being found? In Greek “X” stands for Chi. This is the first letter of the word Χριστός, which in English is the word Christ. Therefore, “X” always marks the spot. It’s Jesus who should be the treasure at the heart of every home. ❤
“Jesus is the stone you builders rejected, and Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name given under heaven given to men for which we must be saved. –Acts 4:12
Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for sending Jesus to be the sacrifice that would end all sacrifices. Thank you that through Jesus we can come boldly to Your throne of grace and receive forgiveness for all of our sins, the gift of Salvation and the gift of the Holy Spirit. Help us to become the obedient children that You’ve called us to be, remembering that Your desire is for us to point the way to You. Help us clear out our closets to make room for You in our homes, and please send out more workers to deliver the good news. Soften our hearts Lord so that our hearts become more like Your own compassionate heart. ❤
“For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” But how are they to call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in Him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!” But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Isaiah says, “Lord, who has believed what He has heard from us?” So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.” –Romans 10:13-17
“My hand made all these things, and so they all came into being. This is the Lord’s declaration. I will look favorably on this kind of person: one who is humble, submissive in spirit, and trembles at My word.” –Isaiah 66:2
“When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with the humble is wisdom.” –Proverbs 11:2
“The LORD mocks the mockers but is gracious to the humble”–Proverbs 3:34