Tuesday, December 15, 2009

I TRUST GOD -- Devotional for December 15, from "Good Seeds"

I urge you, keep up your courage, for there shall be no loss of life among you -- only of the ship. For the God I serve and to whom I belong has assured me of our welfare. So keep up your courage and do not be afraid – for I TRUST GOD! (Acts 27:21-25).

Reading what Paul said to his fellow shipmates during a bad storm, “Courage men, for I trust in God,” brings to mind a song written by Child Evangelism specialist, Lowell Eason, who mentored me as a children’s pastor back in my college days…
When the devil comes a-creeping and I hear his footsteps sneaking,
I trust in God.
When he beckons me to pleasure, hoping sin I will not measure,
I trust in God.
When he points to jewels that glisten, tempting me to look and listen,
Then I ask my Lord and Master to uphold me from disaster.
Then the devil goes retreating, just as sure as he came sneaking…
I trust in God.

This song speaks of the kinds of temptations that are “common to man” (I Corinthians 10:13), rooted in our covetousness nature: the desire for pleasure and treasure. But there’s another temptation even more lethal: the temptation to doubt God’s interest in us, or His ability to help us. This is serious doubt indeed, for it questions the very nature of God. An atheist came up with this piece of diabolical logic: “If God is God, then He is not good; but if God is good, then He is not God.” In other words, if God is God – totally in control and all-powerful – then He is not good, for a good God who could prevent disaster certainly would. And if God is Good – hating all evil and suffering – then He is not God, for a real God would be able to overcome what He indeed abhorred. Just know this: the temptation to think this way is rooted not in logic, but in unbelief. It makes sense only to minds that deny an Intelligent Designer and Benevolent Sustainer, even while surrounded and inundated by His footprints! The passengers and crew of the storm-tossed ship were scared to death, for they knew they were going down. They might have wanted to believe God would save them, but doubt precluded trust. It took a man who had open and constant communion with God to hear heaven’s promise, and to believe it strongly enough to blurt it out. But it wasn’t what Paul said that convinced them – it was what Paul believed. Sometimes we need to tell the fearful doubter next to us: “Don’t worry, I have faith enough for the both of us. I’ll believe for you until your faith takes root. Don’t be afraid: you may not trust God, but I do. You don’t know Him like I do, or you would trust Him like I do, too! In the meantime, just hold this hand of mine – for God’s got my other one!”

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