Hell begins the day God grants you the vision to see all that you could have done, should have done, and would have done… but did not do. – Johann Wolfgang
Not too long ago I got a new Study Bible; kind of a fresh start and exploring a different translation. At the front, on the first blank white page all Bibles seem to have, I felt prompted to start a list. I wrote at the top of the page “Men After God’s Own Heart.” The first name which belongs on this list is David (see 1 Samuel 13:14, Acts 13:22). But he hasn’t made it on there yet, simply because I haven’t made it to his story yet. I wanted to jot the names down as I came to them, recognizing those who stand out in His story as being chasers and seekers of God’s identity and purpose. Men who desire His thoughts, adopt His will as their own, and are in friendship with Him. (I’ve got four names on the list so far.)
Did you know that Moses got to a point where he could talk “face-to-face” with God? Exodus 33:11 literally says it was “as one speaks to a friend.” Check out this dialogue:
Moses: Look, you’ve been telling me, “Lead these people forward.” But you haven’t told me whom you’ll send with me. Yet, you’ve assured me, “I know you by name and think highly of you.” Now if you do think highly of me, show me Your ways so that I may know You…”
God: I’ll go Myself, and I’ll help you. – Exodus 33:12-14, CEB
Man… to be after God’s own heart like Moses. Can you imagine it? I challenge you to look for these people in scripture. These stories will hold you up when you need them to.
I need to admit… at this moment, as I write this a couple of days from its due date, I am struggling. A few days back, I had this blog laid out in my mind with plans of how I would use the weekend to put it together. I was excited, as I thought I was emerging from a time of battle and entering a period of peace and reflection. Then as I sat down to begin writing, I could not recall my thoughts from a few days ago. A fog stemming from multiple attacks on different fronts has come upon me and clouds my thoughts. A renewed effort on Satan’s part, challenging me with sadness, frustration, fatigue, anger, and guilt.
Can I confess to you? I believe exponentially more in “spiritual warfare” and “demonic attacks” than I did a few weeks ago. I have a new appreciation for it and for Satan’s resolve to bring the fight to me. It does not matter that I can’t clearly explain or comprehend it, it’s just real.
I do remember this part of my plan. 1 Samuel 14– The story of Jonathan making the choice to do… something, anything. Even in the midst of desperation, fatigue, and fear.
You see, he was a man after God’s heart. Read the story yourself, and you’ll see the characteristics. But here is what got me this time around:
Go ahead with whatever you’re planning. I’m with you, whatever you decide. – vs. 7, CEB
Who said this? The “no-name” guy who stepped up and backed his commander with no guarantees of victory. In fact, no guarantee anybody would even know what they did if it was, in the end, a suicide mission. It was simply the direction God pointed in. So, they pressed into it.
Recently my sister-in-law sent me this reminder from Scripture to encourage me through some tough times:
We now have this light shining in our hearts, but we ourselves are like fragile clay jars containing this great treasure. This makes it clear that our great power is from God, not from ourselves. We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair. We are hunted down, but never abandoned by God. We get knocked down, but we are not destroyed. Through suffering, our bodies continue to share in the death of Jesus so that the life of Jesus may also be seen in our bodies. – 2 Corinthians 4:7-10)
In the end, I think what God wants to hear from the person who would be His friend is this: “I’m with You. Whatever you decide.”
The “armor-bearer” just took the 5th spot on my list.