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With Us Daily

The Battle for our Minds

Last week in our Women’s Bible Study, we spent a few minutes talking about these verses in Romans 8:5-6, “Those who live according to the flesh have their minds set on what the flesh desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires. The mind governed by the flesh is death, but the mind governed by the Spirit is life and peace.” I shared that my battles with sin are often battles in the mind. What do I think about daily? Are my thoughts wayward? Are they murderous, lustful, or jealous? Yes, yes, and yes. EXCEPT when I set my mind on what the Spirit desires, on things above, on things that are true, honorable, just, pure, lovely, commendable, excellent, and worthy of praise (Phil 4:8).

An Example to Consider

I was reminded of Brother Lawrence and the modern mystic Frank C. Laubach. These men desired to know God and to train their thoughts to think about God daily, multiple times a day, every hour, even every minute!

Moment by moment, I’m kept in His love;
Moment by moment I’ve life from above;
Looking to Jesus till glory doth shine;
Moment by moment, O Lord, I am Thine.

D. W. Whittle

Ira Sankey relates how Rev. Henry Varley said, “I do not like the hymn, I Need Thee Every Hour,” when attending the Chicago World’s Fair. “I need him every minute!” After the prayer meeting, Major Whittle, hearing his friend’s exclamation, went back to his chamber and wrote the hymn Moment by Moment. He was so affected by the thought that he wrote and revised the hymn till two in the morning.

Liturgy of the Ordinary

A book that I read recently that has influenced my thinking is Liturgy of the Ordinary by Tish Harrison Warren. Notice what she says —

Cover of the book Liturgy of the Ordinary

Yet God made us to spend our days in rest, work and play, taking care of our bodies, our families, our neighbourhoods, our homes. What if all these boring parts matter to God? What if days passed in ways that feel small and insignificant to us are weighty with meaning and part of the abundant life God has for us?

Tish Harrison Warren

Making a Connection to God’s Immanence

In the recent survey conducted by Lifeway Research, 1 in 5 evangelicals said that they believe God is unconcerned with our daily lives. That saddens me because those people are missing out on the blessings of God’s continued presence, what we call God’s immanence.

Many Christians haven’t stopped believing in God; we have just become functional deists, living with God at a distance.

Paul E. Miller, A Praying Life

Psalm 139 speaks to God’s nearness. Listen to these beautiful words about how we are always in His presence where He holds us securely!

Where can I go from your Spirit?
    Where can I flee from your presence?
If I go up to the heavens, you are there;
    if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
If I rise on the wings of the dawn,
    if I settle on the far side of the sea,
even there your hand will guide me,
    your right hand will hold me fast.

Psalm 139:7-10 NIV

How Are We Spending our Ordinary Days

If I am to spend my whole life being transformed by the good news of Jesus, I must learn how grand, sweeping truths—doctrine, theology, ecclesiology, Christology—rub against the texture of an average day. How I spend this ordinary day in Christ is how I will spend my Christian life.

Tish Harrison Warren

The heart of the new covenant is that Jesus promises never to leave us. He gave us His Spirit to live within us, as a downpayment of future glory, and to guide and teach us. Jesus and the Spirit both intercede for us. They advocate on our behalf to the Father. Jesus is holding all things together, sustaining our world (Col 1:17; Heb 1:3). In Christ, we move and have our being (Acts 17:28).

Why Might God Seem Far Away

Here are just a few questions to consider while spending time in prayer –

  1. Do I have unconfessed sin in my life, creating a break in my fellowship with God? Do I cherish my sin more than I cherish God?
  2. Do I believe in the doctrine of God’s immanence? Does my unbelief cause me to think God is remote?
  3. Am I allowing difficult circumstances in my life to drive me away from God or closer to Him? Do I believe He is at work through the events of my life?
  4. Have I become too content with the idea that an intimate relationship with God is beyond my grasp?
  5. Do I make any effort to develop an intimate relationship with God?

God’s kindness leads us to repentance as we agree with Him about our sins and unbelief. May we rejoice today in God’s transcendence, beauty, and majesty while celebrating His nearness.

Hymn of Praise

Never a trial that he is not there,
Never a burden that he doth not bear,
Never a sorrow that he doth not share,
Moment by moment, I’m under his care.

Never a weakness that he doth not feel,
Never a sickness that he cannot heal;
Moment by moment, in woe or in weal,
Jesus, my Savior, abides with me still.

Moment by moment I’m kept in his love;
Moment by moment I’ve life from above;
Looking to Jesus till glory doth shine;
Moment by moment, O Lord, I am thine.

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