Willing to be Illuminated and Pierced

Posts tagged ‘David’

Keeping an Eye at the Source

My mom, holding a bunch of apple mangoes from our backyard three summers ago

My mom is an everlasting giver. I don’t know how she obtained that spirit of generosity despite of the hardships she had gone through in her younger days. A retired teacher herself, she was a good disciplinarian in class and a good friend to her students at dismissal. But what she is best known for in our little town is her heart to pray. However, this impression had made others loose their sight in the Source of healing and deliverance.

For a number of times, her closest friends would come up to her and request to pray on certain events. This she would not turn back – but not at all times. There are a few moments when she had to arrange a few things, hence she can’t be available at a certain moment. The funny thing is, some of them prefer her to pray for them over a leader or even a pastor. But isn’t God not looking at the person’s heart and not the kind of person who prays? She would only sigh, trying to remind them to look at the Lord, and not at the person.

In our culture, most of us can’t divorce what we see to what is the truth. It’s like Samuel, who first thought that Jesse’s first born was the capable king. Surprisingly, it was the rugged youth named David who was chosen to stand in places of authority. We tend to look at the medium, but not at the Source. As we do not exercise our intimacy with the One true Source of Creation, we loose sight of who He is, and depend our faith on those whose hearts are close to His. But God does not only want the heroes of faith to be the only ones close to His heart. He wanted everyone to know Him more. But it would take a lot of us to struggle and contend for His intimacy as He is filled with holiness. Intimacy with Him requires us to be stripped of our pride and doubts. Yet, doing so will hurt us so it’s hard for us to go for it.

And even my mom, an arbiter of love and faith in our home, still struggle for it. “I’m old”, she would say, “and times have already hardened my perspective”. But God blesses her for seeking Him especially in the morning, when the sun has not shined in. What she does not know was that God is seeking for more of our inner being, not that He still does not know us well, but because He wants us to be fully His.

I pray everyone in our small neighborhood turn back to the Source of love. When that time comes, there wouldn’t be a problem for prayer requests. 🙂

Recognizing the Leaders of Our Society

It’s really hard to break old habits, but how more much to break stubborn pride. I must admit, I always have a hard time when my character is refined, especially when you’re talking about breaking pride.

There’s a stubborn, little rebel in me that always wanted to break free from authority, whether in the office, at church, or at home. No one is perfect, not even our leaders, and it is not at all times that we would agree with one another. But true enough, it is here that God tests us on how we deal with our authority.

Studying the Nazirite Training Phase 1, I looked back to the topic “Submission to Authority”. Until now, this is the phase that the Lord is still dealing with me. I’m usually quiet but deep within I love to criticize. But the Lord reminds me that it is not my business to criticize a leader’s fault. The issue is how I respond. Let’s take a look why we should recognize the authority of our leaders in society:

Leaders are appointed by the Lord: Hebrews 13:17 says “Obey those in authority over you for they give account for your souls”. We have no right to question why such are in authority. The Lord has a reason to put them in place. Whether it’s a tyrant or a very impressive president, only the Lord has the right to promote or demote him (Psalms 75:6-7).

We are a generation in need of fathers and mothers in society: Although God is the central point of authority, he has placed people to lead in various aspects in our lives to guide us (Prov. 15:22). It does not mean that He can’t handle us. They are there as a guide and they are like the shadow of His authority. But that does not mean they are perfect. Yet, their imperfections should never be the reason that we should disrespect them.

Rebellion and disrespect lead to one’s breakdown: There are many instances in the Bible that a person falls because he disrespected those who was in authority over him. Ham, whose family line was cursed because he “pointed a finger” at his father, Noah, who was drunk one time (Gen. 9:20-24), the former King Saul, whose promised kingdom was taken away when he sacrificed the offering himself without waiting for Samuel (1 Sam. 13:5-15), and Eli’s sons who died early because of the wicked deeds they did even though they were serving in the temple of the Lord (1 Samuel 2:12-36). In fact, the Bible has a promise to those who will obey their parents: “Honor your father and your mother, so that you may live long in the land the LORD your God is giving you.” (Exodus 20:12) Yes, disregarding authority can lead to loss of inheritance and even death. But look at the lives of those who regarded those in authority: David, to whom the kingdom was handed down to him by the Lord because of his respect and love to Saul even though he was an object of his murderous obsession (1 Samuel 24), Nehemiah, who found favor to rebuild the temple as he regarded the authority of a secular king (Nehemiah 2:1-9), and Daniel, whose life was always spared from great harm, as he honored the authority of non-Jewish kings (Daniel 6:10-28). See the paradox? God’s rule is simply black and white. No in betweens. Obedience mean life and gain. Disobedience means loss and death.

But the Lord is merciful. And I am under refinement on such things. Our generation can never stand as leaders if we never regard our leaders. Society falls when the people rebel. What more if we disregard God’s authority over earth?

May we learn how to regard those in position regardless of their character. May we learn how to yield and to react in love and respect regardless of their imperfections. And may we grow in grace as the Lord hone us to become the leaders of this coming generation. Lord refine us to be like You. We can never take our position if we are not willing to be broken from our own will. Let Your will be done in us as it is in heaven.

 

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