Friday, October 23, 2009

"Bargaining With God", by Pastor Kevin Lynch

This one came to me last night as I was drifting off to sleep. God comes to me often in a semi-state of consciousness, or in a dream. Too often I don't remember what it was the next day.

He was specific to me last night. It was fresh in my mind this morning after a fitful sleep.

Mortality issues.

Many people face them. Too many are Christians.

Our mortality is not an issue when we know where we are going when we die.

I mean, really. That's the bottom line.

Mortality is such an issue with some Christians that they start "bargaining" with God.

Seriously. I'm not even sure if they realize that they are haggling for an extension on their life as surely as bickering for a deal on a used car.

Many have no reason to make such a plea as they don't even have any bad medical news to go by.

They are as healthy as the proverbial horse.

They are driven by fear. Some are hypochondriacs. Some have a morbid fear of dying young because their ancestry allegedly predisposes them to it.

Mickey Mantle had such a fear of dying young like his dad, grandfather and uncles that he died a liver diseased alcoholic. If he hadn't drank he'd probably be alive today.

That's irony for ya'.

The world is full of do-gooders who do good only because they think it's buying them time, or getting them on the fast track to the pearly gates, not because their heart is good, or even that they love God.

Jesus could sniff them out, and still can today. He knew when He was being schmoozed, and when people really loved Him from the heart (How many of the multitudes who got a free meal at the miracle of the loaves and fishes were just there for the food?).

You simply can't pile up points.

You can't "sweeten the deal" with God.

You are what you are and God knows it.

Certainly you can allow your heart to be changed by Him, but contriteness is what He looks for rather than how many people you got to sign up for the March of Dimes.

What we do BECAUSE we love God is not bargaining. Doing what we do to IMPRESS God is an entirely different ball of wax.

One is a fresh aroma wafting up to the heavens. The other is a stench in God's nostrils.

How about poor Job. The bible says he was an upright man who loved the Lord.

Yet, he was full of fear. I think Job was precisely the kind of person we are considering today.

He lived by religious appeasement. Lighting candles, sacrificing animals, trying to cover up the sins of his family members with good deeds and religion.

When God allowed Satan to upend his life the truth came out.

Job 23:13-15:

"But He is unchangeable, and who can turn Him? And what He wants to do, that He does. (14) For He performs [that which He has] planned for me, and of many such matters He is mindful. (15) Therefore am I troubled and terrified at His presence; when I consider, I am in dread and afraid of Him."

There it is. Job was afraid of God because of what he thought He would do to him.

He forgot all the great things God had done for him, and really had absolutely no reason to believe anything else, yet he dwelt in the fearful negative.

Listen to him in 3:25: "What I feared has come upon me; what I dreaded has happened to me."


Is that you today?

If so, don't worry. God is not against you. He is not going to kill you.

However,you are accomplishing that on your own.

Your morbid unfounded fears will put you in an early grave.

You are being sifted like wheat by Satan.

It doesn't have to be that way.

God wants you to have a long, healthy and productive life.

He is not your affliction. He is your benefactor.

Take a breath today and reconsider the foolishness you may be involved in.

Let the Holy Spirit calm those jangled nerves. Place no trust in anything but God.

You stand alone before Him as an individual not the representative of a sickly and long dead ancestry.

Luke 9:59-60: "And He said to another, Become My disciple, side with My party, and accompany Me! But he replied, Lord, permit me first to go and bury (await the death of) my father.(60) But Jesus said to him, Allow the dead to bury their own dead; but as for you, go and publish abroad throughout all regions the kingdom of God."

Jesus waits for nothing. You are what is important to Him! Today, this moment!

Jesus is concerned for the living, not the dead.

This could be your monumental moment with God. Right now.


Allow Him to calm your morbid fears. Allow Him to allow yourself to enjoy this life, instead of laboring away and gathering for something that has already been given to you.

You bring nothing to the table but yourself. You have NOTHING to bargain with. It's futile.

Just be. Just be in Him.

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><

No comments:

Post a Comment