Wherefore the Lord said, Forasmuch as this people draw near me with their mouth, and with their lips do honour me, but have removed their heart far from me, and their fear toward me is taught by the precept of men: Therefore, behold, I will proceed to do a marvellous work among this people, even a marvellous work and a wonder: for the wisdom of their wise men shall perish, and the understanding of their prudent men shall be hid. (Isa 29:13-14)
It's very hard to be on the outside looking in (again). But where would you rather be? I know, from experience, that being part of a group of people who seem to be "popular" is not necessarily the place to be. What we are really looking for when we pursue these relationships is acceptance. What value do you place on your afterlife? Is it an after thought? Do you want so badly to be part of a scenario in this world that you are willing to throw away all you have in the next?
No, I cannot "lose" my salvation. I am saved. That's written in His book. I don't worry about that. I know my name is there. What I do think about (quite regularly) is how I've slipped from where I once was. What is it that has taken me from that totally devoted person who read His word daily, sang his praises on a regular basis, looked to the cross for strength and accepted without question all the pitfalls encountered? The answer is very plain and simple. My heart has been hardened (yes, there is another devotional about hardened hearts, but this one is new - so read on)...
When we place ourselves in the mortal world, when we strive for things of lesser value than His mercy and grace, we become part of the mortal world. We no longer offer praises, we no longer find strength in His promises and we no longer go to the cross for strength. We go inside our own minds, in our own perceived knowledge for the answers to our problems. We continue to seek out what we know is NOT His will for us and find ourselves treading water without any life boat in sight. We say the words ("the wisdom of wise men shall perish") and we begin to question everything and trust no one ("the understanding of their prudent men shall be hid"). Our accomplishments mean nothing if they are not a blessing from the Father. We become hypocrites ("with their lips do they honour me") and liars. We do not fear our Creator nor do we thank or praise Him. We begin to fall away from all that we know to be righteous and good. We become lost - again!
So how do we safely return to that place of peace and grace? We begin again. We start out small - simple praises and distancing ourselves from what we know has brought about this change in the first place. Can we cut ourselves off completely? Not really. We must continue to be an example of His love for all. We make the choices that will please Him. We stand up for the principles that He has taught us. It's not going to be easy (He never said it would be), but it will be worth it. If we choose our path in accordance with the one He's laid before us, we can't go wrong.
So make that decision. Make that choice once again to FOLLOW - not to lead. Find your way back to what you know to be HIS will for you (not your will hoping He will follow you and give you what you think you want). His love is sufficient!!! Let it be!!!