7.14.2010

Devotion is a verb, not a noun

The below is an excerpt from a letter I wrote to a friend. I was describing my thoughts on "devotion". It seems to me that when I think of devotion as a noun as opposed to actually setting my face towards God and asking everything of him and begging for his Spirit's help, this is when I am miserable and most often in rebellious, blatant sin. Here is what I wrote:

I would like to get in a solid, very very consistent schedule of giving myself time to be affected by God and moved closer to him each day. Often my schedule gets messed up by my family who really can't tell me any plans ahead of time, but I can get bitter regarding that point far too easily.

George Mueller put it best regarding the point of our personal devotion (verb, not a noun) to God:
     The point is this: I saw more clearly than ever that the first great and primary business to which I ought to attend every day was, to have my soul happy in the Lord.
     The first thing to be concerned about was not how much I might serve the Lord, how I might glorify the Lord; but how I might get my soul into a happy state, and how my inner man might be nourished.
      For I might seek to set the truth before the unconverted, I might seek to benefit believers, I might seek to relieve the distressed, I might in other ways seek to behave myself as it becomes a child of God in this world; and yet, not being happy in the Lord, and not being nourished and strengthened in my inner man day by day, all this might not be attended to in a right spirit.
So basically I have been seeing where I fail to receive this and then be strengthened by it for my daily battles and joy.

Spurgeon also put it well with this word which distills the gospel oh so well:
 “‘Come unto me,’ he says, ‘and I will give you.’  You say, ‘Lord, I cannot give you anything.’  He does not want anything.  Come to Jesus, and he says, ‘I will give you.’  Not what you give to God, but what he gives to you, will be your salvation.  I will give you‘ — that is the gospel in four words.
Will you come and have it?  It lies open before you.”
That is exactly what I need every day. When I fail to look to Christ and look to his unthinkably generous, giving hand, my day will likely be one of misery or chasing after idols and sinning against God. The only thing that will get me through the next second is Jesus' love for me. As often as I forget this incomparable truth, I will live a poor life that is truly ironic because one would expect the person who has been given the greatest treasure imaginable to be supremely happy and joyful and to be the type of person who spends all of his time exulting in the treasure given him.

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