Learning to Abide in Christ

As the deer longs for You, O God. I thirst for God, the living God. When can I go and stand before him? Day and night I have only tears for food, while my enemies continually taunt me, saying, “Where is this God of yours?” My heart is breaking as I remember how it used to be; I walked among the crowds of worshippers, leading a great procession to the house of God, singing for joy and giving thanks amid the sound of a great celebration! Why am I discouraged? Why is my heart so sad? I will put my hope in God! I will praise Him again—my Savior and my God! Now I am deeply discouraged, but I will remember You—even from distant Mount Hermon, the source of the Jordan, from the land of Mount Mizar. I hear the tumult of the raging seas as Your waves and surging tides sweep over me. But each day the Lord pours His unfailing love upon me, and through each night I sing His songs, praying to God who gives me life. “O God my rock,” I cry, “why have You forgotten me? Why must I wander around in grief, oppressed by my enemies?” Their taunts break my bones. They scoff, “Where is this God of yours?” Why am I discouraged? Why is my heart so sad? I will put my hope in God! I will praise Him again—my Savior and my God! [Psalm 42] 

Holy Spirit I am learning and desiring to know You more and I will follow Paul’s example of when he was in Prison in Rome writing to the Philippians. He wrote: I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, and so, somehow, to attain to the resurrection from the dead. Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers [and sisters], I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. [Philippians 3:10-14] I understand that I draw closer when I am struggling and facing suffering. Not that I ask for this, I just understand it. Through Your Holy Spirit, I seek to know You to where every minute of my life is completely surrendered and dependent upon my relationship with You. All I can offer to You is myself as a living sacrifice that You can fully consume and use to Your glory. I will do my part by renewing my mind through meditating on whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, so I can find any virtue and anything praiseworthy. [Philippians 4:8] Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable to You, O Lord, my Rock, and my Redeemer. [Psalm 19:14] Your word says and I desire it to be so in my life, I will abide in You, and Your words abide in me, then I can ask what I desire, and You say it shall be done for me. By this God the Father is glorified, that I bear much fruit; so I can be a disciple of Christ. [John 15:7&8] 

Holy Spirit I am learning the wisdom Peter told us when he said, “Since your souls have been purified by obedience to the truth through the Spirit unto a genuine brotherly love, love one another deeply with a pure heart, for you have been born again, not from perishable seed, but imperishable, through the word of God which lives and abides forever.” [1 Peter 1:22&23] Let me grasp and understand and then do what I know to be true so that I can abide in You and live as closely to You as I can on this side of eternity. I give You all the praise and glory in the name of Jesus, Amen!