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Posted: August 23, 2018 2:11 p.m.
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Abide in Constant contact with God

Chaplain Corner

“Blessed [with spiritual security] is the one who believes, trusts in, and relies on the Lord and whose hope and confident expectation is the Lord.” Jeremiah 17:7 (AMP).

Jeremiah 17:1-8 is God’s message through the words of the prophet Jeremiah. It is a warning for us to not lose sight of living each day in an awareness of being in dependence on God. 

In general, it contains the truth that there are only two types of people: those who depend on human strength and those who depend on the living God. He makes it clear that we cannot look to both as our supreme basis of trust. We will either put our hope in the failing promises and finite power of people, or we will look with faith beyond human capability to the Sovereign person and satisfying promises of God. 

We are sustained alone by God’s providence and grace. Yes, we may expect help from others, so far as God enables them to help us, but we must rest our total trust and confidence in God alone. 

When we make humanity the basis of our confidence, we will experience rejection and disappointment again and again. We also fracture our relationship with God. But when God becomes the ultimate source of our confidence, we are never let down. 

There are three brief observations about the truths from this text. 

In verse five, a person who depends on human strength and possesses no spiritual accountability to God is “cursed” or, also translated, “miserable.” This person places attributes reserved only for God and puts them onto mankind. His or her confidence is in the wisdom, power, and faithfulness of humanity instead of God. 

In verse six, a person who does possess individual, spiritual faith in God yet trusts in their own righteousness and strength, is like a shrub in a parched desert. This person looks the part on the outside, but is devoid of spiritual life and vitality on the inside. 

They are spiritually dry and think they can do well enough on their own, without the regular abiding grace of Christ. This person does not, in fact, depend on God. They lack the spiritual stamina to weather the storms of life.

 In verse seven, a third person, one blessed with spiritual security, is the person who not only believes, but trusts in and relies on the Lord. This person’s abiding hope and confident expectation is the Lord. This person flourishes in the drought. 

When the heat of life gets hot, this person remains cool and calm. This person is not anxious, but is fixed in God’s peace throughout the course of the trial. This person’s soul is watered by constant contact and devotion to God.

 So now to ask the difficult question: Which person am I?  

Too many times, we find ourselves depending on ourselves – our own thoughts, our own interpretations or reactions, our own feelings or “gut instinct.” We ought to want to always be the tree planted and living by the water. 

In the New Testament, Jesus called His disciples to this same way of living in John 15. It is the way of abiding! 

Jesus describes abiding as remaining connected to Him as a branch of grapes connects to the vine. The fruit is utterly dependent upon the nutrients passed through the vine via a constant and steadfast connection. 

Abiding is the same as the tree planted next to the water. Its leaves always stay green because of the deep roots and constant contact with the life-giving water. 

So, how well are you abiding today?

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