March 25, 2010

Fossilized Faith

But the Lord is faithful, who shall establish you, and keep you from evil. 
II Thessalonians 3:3

More than likely you're familiar with Philippians 1:6.  You know the verse, "He who began a good work in you...will be FAITHFUL to complete it." 

Oh.  Being a mom of two young children, I catch myself thinking, "If only I had a dollar for every time I hear, 'I'll do it later, Mom'."    Or how about, "Sure, Mom, I'll do it" only to find that the requested task has not yet been completed.   *sigh*  

In my walk with the Lord, many times I find myself frustrated with myself, with the lack of immediate progress---or worse:   The problem I "thought I had overcome" yesterday creeps back up a day or two later, and I seem to have completely forgotten how to apply what I learned a few days earlier.  OH!   When will this "work in ME" ever be done?    When will the lessons I've learned really "SINK IN???"

Ever been there?   If so, there is good news for you today.   When I was studying II Thessalonians 3:3, the Lord revealed a wonderful treasure to me in three words:   Faithful, Establish, Evil. 

The word "faithful" means, "true, sure."  The Lord is faithful...He is TRUE.  He is SURE.  We can remain confident in the Lord because He is TRUE and SURE, never failing in His Word.

One of the meanings for "establish" is "to set, as in stone."   That reminded me of the times I've THOUGHT I had learned a lesson, but quickly found out the lesson "had not completely set in."  

You may be wondering how the word "evil" in today's verse has anything to do with "faithful" and "establish."   But as soon as I looked up "evil" in Strong's concordance, the LIGHT BULB went off!  I saw the connection!   One explanation for "evil" is "to degenerate from the original virtue."  Whoah.   The virtues of our Lord...Walking uprightly before Him--- Obviously, this would be opposite of "evil."  So it makes sense to think of "evil" as being to DEGENERATE from the original virtue.

Tie it all together:  The Lord is faithful (true and sure) to "set in stone" what He's taught us, and keep us from "degenerating FROM His virtues."  WOW!

No matter what, keep walking in the faith by allowing Him to "grow you."   Sooner or later, what He's teaching you WILL begin to "set in stone"---and NOTHING will ever be able to change what He has SET.  
Dear Father, thank You so much for revealing Your truths to us each day by the power of Your Holy Spirit.  Thank You for making the effort of DIGGING DEEPER into Your Word WORTH WHILE!   Thank You for understanding our lack of patience with OURSELVES.   Help us to trust Your Word and BELIEVE that what You are teaching us will eventually become a part of us, just as a tiny fragment or  indention becomes part of a fossil!  You WILL keep us from slipping back into our old ways!  You will keep us from all evilOH Please pour out Your Son-shine onto our hearts, so that the precious lessons You've taught us will HARDEN and become a part of us!  SET US, Father, in Jesus' Name, Amen.

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