Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Confessing Him Before Men

Jesus isn't my friend because we have things in common. We didn't grow up together. It is not because we enjoyed the same things. I am not good for Him. He doesn't remain faithful to me because I am faithful to him. He is as much a friend to me when I am an idiot as when I have some ducks in a row. He is there for me when I am bad for myself and even when I am ugly to Him.

He is patient. He is good. He is kind. He is faithful. I have been impatient and unfaithful to Him many times but He does not change nor does He hold any of it against me. He never will either.

I get broken thinking about it. He is my hero and the people I know who shine forth His life are my heroes also. The hero's example can cause cowards to rise to the occasion in the situations that life often presents them with. Seeing who He is I am mystically transformed by the Spirit of God into a real man.

"And I tell you, everyone who acknowledges me before men, the Son of Man also will acknowledge before the angels of God, but the one who denies me before men will be denied before the angels of God." - Luke 12:8-9 ESV

"So everyone who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven, but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven. Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I have not come to bring peace, but a sword." - Matthew 10:32-34 ESV

We are not on even footing with God unless we acknowledge His friendship... His grace. If we think we are friends because of what we are doing we are wrong. It is subtle form of denial but still a denial. It has never and is never going to be about us. He calls us friends because of what He did. He is the King and we are made royalty by our relationship to Him.

"He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth." - Isaiah 53:7 KJV

It is natural thinking to love only those who love us. We protect ourselves because we have been hurt and lack the knowledge of our true protector. We flinch because of many blows. Oh, what a convicting thought that is but it is a true thought. When we deny friendship because of someones lack we become the very thing we hate.

God says:

"I will never leave you nor forsake you." - Hebrews 13:5b ESV

"Can a woman forget her nursing child, that she should have no compassion on the son of her womb? Even these may forget, yet I will not forget you. Behold, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands; your walls are continually before me." - Isaiah 49:15-16 ESV

His gentleness makes us great. Grace softens us. We have a friend and anyone can make it if they have Jesus as their friend. Being with Him washes away the things that made us flinch to protect ourselves and we begin to reach out in love.

How many people need a friend like this? How many people need a person who will come alongside them and believe in them? Believing not because the person standing before them is good but because the person sitting on a throne in Heaven is good.

Today is another day. We can laugh and smile with people we like and who like us (If we have them that is) or we can leave the ninety-nine and go after the one who is lost and tell that lost one what a friend Jesus Is. The ninety-nine will be there when we get back.


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