“…And he did what was right in the sight of the Lord, but not with a loyal heart…
2 Chronicles 25:2”
The word loyalty what does that mean? what does it mean to have a loyal heart
First thought that crossed my mind was the possibility of being obedient without being loyal. Loyalty is the ability to stand by a person in the good times and bad so not obedience by convenience but event when it isn’t.
So some context to the verse, we are currently being told about Amaziah who was one of the descendants of Solomon, current king of Judah. The kingdom had gone through many cycles of kings with many of them who had their hearts turned away from God, far away from the example of David, who was a man after God’s own heart. Joash was Amaziah’s father and was the 1st of the Kings of Judah after many years who had a heart for God and had done certain things to bring the people back to serve the Lord their God (2 Chronicles 24). With the right example, Amaziah must have been taught the obedience to God. This is evident of the fact that God sees our hearts, our intents and our motives
“For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show Himself strong on behalf of those whose heart is loyal to Him. In this you have done foolishly; therefore from now on you shall have wars.”
II Chronicles 16:9 NKJV
Are we only obedient when it is convenient for us or are we willing to serve and seek after God’s leading even when things don’t seem to be going exactly the way we want?
I startedy journey towards spiritual growth and in depth scriptural knowledge as a Christian slightly over a year and I have learnt a lot from the many times I have fallen along the way and count those as part of the lessons, I need to learn to get to where I look forward to
I have been a Christian almost all my life as I was born into the faith. Through the years, I have learnt that your faith is completely personal and totally your responsibility. I want to know what it means to truly live a life of honor and worship to God and most of all learn from the historical times of the Bible which serves as the blueprint for every believer. As it is the living word of God to them who believe
My decision to read through the entire bible has faced and still facing many hurdles along the way. I started off with the Bible in A Year plans but those didn’t work for me. I tried coming up with a plan of my own and that only took me so far. In all this, I decided to go back to the one who put this longing and desire in my heart and remind myself of the scripture that says ‘Draw Near to me and I will draw near to you’, relying on his strength and wisdom to be my guide. Its been uphill climb much slower than I had hoped but more exciting than I had anticipated
This series is born out of my desire to document my journey and share with you amazing treasures, bible fun facts and deep truths I discover along the way. I look forward to sharing with you and inviting you to take this walk with me through the greatest book ever written
So I started attending a discipleship class in my church…it was such a huge coincidence as the announcement for those who wanted to continue to grow in their faith, was made the first Sunday I attended service there.
My 1st class was last week and we spent the evening meditating on Matthew 28:17-20. We even split in 2 groups and acted a short skit from the verses. Without using any of the exact words but our understanding and interpretations. It was such a fun evening of learning 😊
One thing I learnt was that despite the fact that we are all called to a life of drawing others to eternal life in Christ Jesus. In whatever way we can through the gifts Christ has abundantly blessed us with – writing, speaking, encouraging, teaching etc, we must continue to do so to a point where the people we have blessed can be a blessing to others(..teaching them all I have commanded you…making disciples of all nations).
In other words, we keep pouring into others until we initiate a DOMINO Effect
So I spent the past few weeks reading through the book of Leviticus of the Holy Bible and some of the chapters almost made me ask myself why read this if we are no longer subjected to these rules as a result of the redemption power of Christ death on the cross?
Well, it took me up until the last chapter to realize why not?
If you are not familiar with the contents of the book of leviticus, let me give a brief summary of what the book is about. Leviticus is the 3rd book in the Bible and in history, is captured in the time when the Israelites were still making their way to the promised land after being delivered from the land of Egypt where they were held captive for 430 years. That’s a pretty long time to be under captivity for.
The people of Israel had lived in Egypt for 430 years. In fact, it was on the last day of the 430th year that all the lord’s forces left the land – Exodus 12:40-41 (NLT)
Hence the book of leviticus details Priestly instructions given to the Israelites by God through Moses during their sojourn to the land of Canaan, the promised land. There were instructions on different sin offerings to be made when various sins were committed, sacrifices, wave offering and more. The punishment for sin were so steep in those days that I feel there might have even been an atmosphere of fear amongst them.
…a fracture for a fracture, an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth. Whatever anyone does to injure another person must be paid back in kind.- Leviticus 24:20 (NLT)
Reading these chapters made me attain a deeper level of understanding of the importance of the statement of being not under Law but Grace. We now have the ability to pray to our heavenly father and ask for forgiveness when we fall short trusting that he hears us and forgives us of our wrong doings. We no longer have to sacrifice an unblemished lamb or ram because we have been bought at a high price and redeemed by the blood of Jesus Christ.
So next time you sin or fall short of the mercies of God, take a quick moment to think of what you would have been required to do if you were living the levitical times and thank God for the deliverance that we now so freely enjoy.
So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most. – Hebrews 4:16 (NLT)
So, I know that might seem like a rather odd question considering the fact that most people consider sleep as a period of rest, which i agree in no doubt it is but I recently became aware of the concept of ”intentional rest”. Now, what does that even mean?! To rest with intentionality.
This is a concept that I considered foreign until quite recently when I realised I was becoming so consumed by a very busy schedule that it started affecting my physical and emotional health. So, I decided to take a break from Instant Messaging in order to prioritize my activtities in my life to the most optimal arrangement to improve this and get some rest. But guess what, I realised I wasn’t resting right.
Okay, okay…before you start wondering what the big deal is about resting and why am going on and on about it, let me share a few things I learnt in the last couple of weeks. The 3 Ws
We were deigned to rest. This might seem like a very obvious fact but its something not many of us pause to think about in the middle of our very busy schedules. I believe its safe to infer that if the creator took a whole day to rest then the created was also designed to rest also after hard work. This requirement is highlighted so perfectly in Mark 2:27, which says: ”The Sabbath was made on account and for the sake of man, not man for the Sabbath”
Rest is an exercise of faith and obedience.
…For those earlier ones never did get to the place of rest because they were disobedient….Let us therefore be diligent to enter that rest, lest anyone fall according to the same example of disobedience – Hebrews 4:6;11 (NKJV)
Hmmm..interesting right?! It would surprise you to know as it surprised me that for us, rest is practically mandatory and is done from a place of faith in the one who we believe has everything under control. It is impossible to rest if one’s mind is fully preocccupied with all the cares and worries of our lives but the ability to fully truly trust that everything works together for our good can only come through faith.
For he who has once entered [God’s] rest also has ceased from [the weariness and pain] of human labors, just as God rested from those labors peculiarly his own – Hebrews 4:10(AMP)
True rest then can be considered an act of worship because it allows us to fully surrender our will to His.
How often must we rest? Daily. Yeah, you read right…we are to enjoy some moments of true rest daily. I don’t mean to sleep but a consciousness of taking a couple of minutes a day to rest in His embrace. To forget the worries of this world – our tight schedules, the demands to be a good friend, employer, employee, employer, child, mother, father, boyfriend, girlfriend – and truly rest as the ‘created’ in the arms of the ‘creator’
Again, He sets a definite day, [a new] Today, [and gives another opportunity of securing that rest] saying through David after so long a time in the words already quoted, Today, if you would hear His voice and when you hear it, do not harden your hearts – Hebrews 4:7 (AMP)
So seize the moment TODAY if its in some quiet meditation with a book, a song or in your own bubble in a noisy environment. Whatever works for you as long as you are able to spend a few minutes resting in the assurance of his promises and what lies in store for you. The works were finished from the beginning of time
…On the 7th day, God rested from ALL his works…Hebrews 4:4(NKJV)
We are all trying to make that meeting, beat that deadline, keep up with lightening pace of things but let us not get so accustomed to being busy that we believe in the strength of our works alone. I recently read in a devotional plan, in my Bible app, titled: The Lies of Busyness
‘Busyness by itself isn’t wrong but busyness requires intention…The prayer is that in our pursuit of life, we do not busy ourselves in vain but in alignment to God’w will and with intention’
I believe the only way to remain ‘busy with focus’ is to take a few minutes each day to REST. Heather Lindsey put it so perfectly in the image below:
Ref: Hebrews 4:1-8; Mark 2:27; Matthew 11:28; Psalm 39:6
As Christians, sometimes we become complacent in our beliefs and obedience, I know I certainly do but we need to constantly remind ourselves that we believe in a God who is not only merciful and just but knows our weakness and empowers us with Grace to overcome that weakness.
28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a debased mind, to do those things which are not fitting; (Romans 1:28 NKJV)
How then do we retain God in our knowledge?! By conscious effort? By constant reminding of ourselves?
When you love a person, do you struggle to remember to call or text? To talk about that person or to want to be with that person. I think not 🙂
That’s how it should be with God as well, we should focus on loving Him wholeheartedly and He will be retained in our knowledge.