Thursday, January 24, 2013

"Everything In Heart"

    The wisest and richest man who ever lived came back from the realm of things to report, "There's nothing there!" 
    "And whatsoever mine eyes desired I kept not from them, I withheld not my heart from any joy; for my heart rejoiced in all my labor: and this was my portion of all my labor. Then I looked on all the works that my hands had wrought, and on the labor that I had labored to do: and, behold, all was vanity and vexation of spirit, and there was no profit under the sun" (Ecclesiastes 2:10-11).

    God Himself provides "life and breath and all things" (Acts 17:25).  Moreover, He purposes our pleasure in them: "God... giveth us richly all things to enjoy" (I Timothy 6:17).  Things nevertheless tempt us, or rather, our spiritual enemies use things to tempt us.  Because enjoyable possessions, places, experiences and events bring pleasure to us, Satan and his minions seek to prompt the notion that God's good gifts can satisfy us spiritually, emotionally, mentally and physically.   They cannot, nor does the Lord mean for us to equate the gifts with the Giver.  He rather intends that His blessings serve to draw us to Himself by revealing the grace, mercy, and lovingkindness of His heart and Person, wherein our truest fulfillment does in fact exist: "He is thy life" (Deuteronomy 30:20).

    As we ponder our Heavenly Father's gifts, we do well to richly enjoy them with a grateful heart.  We also do well to hold them lightly, as it were, remembering our proclivity to mistake gifts for the Giver.  Indeed, we shall depart from this present life with nothing in hand.  If we have trusted in the Lord Jesus Christ, however, we shall depart with everything in heart.  "Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, Thou art with me" (Psalm 23:4).  This should tell us much about the gifts, the Giver, and the necessity of appreciating and using the former, but worshiping, trusting, and affirming to the Latter...

"Thou art my portion, o Lord!"
(Psalm 119:57)

"Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for a man's life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth" (Luke 12:15). 

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