“But he did not know that the Lord had left him” (Judges 16:20).
God will never leave the follower of Jesus Christ, but His blessing, favor, and power can. In fact, His favor can leave you, while you are totally unaware of your loss. This is scary. To think that I can go through life believing I am okay with God when, in reality, I totally miss Him is a precarious position in which to live. It is lonely and dangerous to live outside the favor of God, and sometimes it leads to destruction.
Relationships, reputations, and finances can be obliterated when we choose to go our way and not God’s way. Do not think you can ignore your spouse and children and think things are still okay with God. Exposure to online pornographic sites does not enhance God’s power in your life. Seething anger and unresolved resentment do not cultivate a spirit of understanding God’s wisdom and perspective; rather, they hinder your prayers. So how can you know if you are living with God’s blessing, favor, and power or without it?
First of all, be honest with yourself. Are you running from God or toward God? Are you who He wants you to be, or are you masquerading, trying to be someone else? Is your anger out of bounds and out of control, or are you under the influence and forgiveness of the Holy Spirit? These are important questions for us to continually ask ourselves.
Then, it is important to be honest with others. We all have blind spots that stunt our spiritual growth. Look to others who truly love you, who can help you identify these sinful tendencies, and who will hold you accountable not to go there. Sin exposed to the light will dry up like a red worm on a hot July sidewalk, while sin concealed in the dark will flourish like rank mildew and mold in a cold, moist, infected cellar.
We do better when others are watching. It is better to be humbled before a small group that knows and loves us than to be humiliated before the masses who do not know us well or care as deeply. Lastly, remember your commitments to Christ, and fulfill them by His grace. Do not stray from your basic discipline of learning and applying God’s Word and prayer. Wake up. Do not miss Him. His favor may have already left.
Prayer: How do I best stay accountable to God and man? Am I experiencing the favor and blessing of the Lord? If not, what is hindering me?
Related Readings: Matthew 25:1–13; Hebrews 13:5; 1 Peter 3:7
Post/Tweet: Sin exposed to the Lord’s light will dry up like a red worm on a hot July sidewalk. #ligthoftheLord
© 2013 by Boyd Bailey. All rights reserved.