What Living before God Requires
We have this kind of confidence towards God through Christ: not that we are confident in ourselves to consider anything as coming from ourselves, but our competence is from God. 2 Corinthians 3:4-5
There are some, God says, who do not walk sincerely in His sight, but are led solely by fixed curiosity and pride. They desire to learn his secrets and to understand the great ways of God, but neglect themselves and the working out of their salvation. Yet, if we focus upon the things God desires for us, he promises to not leave us because our pride and curiosity have made us fall into great temptations.
Fear the judgments of God and the consequences should we continue in our selfish ways. Do not despise the words God places upon our hearts, but search them diligently to discover our iniquities – those great things which we have done and not done, displeasing God. Some of us offer our devotion through books, journals, pictures, or even outward signs and figures. Some of us have God in the words of our mouth, says God, but so few of us actually have God in our hearts. Others of us have our understanding enlightened and our affections cleansed and still long for the eternal things of God, and choose to listen to the things of this world, serve the necessities of nature with heavy hearts, and struggle with what the Spirit of Truth is speaking within them, because the Spirit teaches each of us to despise earthly things and love heavenly things, and to disregard the world and desire heaven day and night.
However, because our love continues to be weak and certainly our virtue imperfect, we need to be strengthened and comforted by God personally through regular visits to teach us with holy discipline. We desire within us to be freed from evil passions and to have our hearts cleansed of improper affections, so that being inwardly healed we will be fit to love, courageous to suffer, and steady to persevere. Because, your love is a great thing, thoroughly good, and it makes everything light that is heavy within our lives, and endures everything. Your love carries a burden that is no burden, and everything that is bitter is made sweet and tasteful. Lord, your love exalts and encourages us to do great things, and keeps us always longing for what is pure and perfect in your eyes. Your love desires to be lifted up, and will not be kept back by anything low and inferior.
My daily prayer: I praise you, my heavenly Father, and through the name of your Son, Lord Jesus Christ, for you have promised to remember me. You are the Father of mercies and all comfort. Thank you my Lord for the comfort that refreshes my soul, though I am not always worthy of your gifts of grace. I will always seek to bless and glorify you and your Son, and the Spirit who comforts forever and ever. When you make your presence known to me in my heart, my whole being rejoices. You are my glory and the cause of exaltation in my heart – my hope and refuge in the day of trouble. I need to be strengthened and comforted by you, please visit me often, my Lord, and teach me with your holy discipline. Guide me in your ways and with your wisdom so that I may walk pleasing you, and be a faithful example to my family and friends so that they may seek you because of what you have done through me and my life. Thank you, my Lord and Savior. Amen
For additional reading: Philippians 2:12; Isaiah 29:13; Psalm 1:2; 32:7; 59:16; 25:5; 2 Corinthians 1:3; Proverbs 13:24; Matthew 11:30