Thursday, March 14, 2013

Rod and Staff (Maturing Faith Part 4)

Wow!  What does a life look like when it is so secure and confident in God that it simply does not fear?  I think it is a process, after all, we are going from "little faith" to a more "mature faith."

It is a life of knowing Jesus is on our side.  Believing He is pledged to help us.  Secure that He represents us and intercedes for us.  Confident that He has us hemmed in and surrounds us with His angels.

Mature faith is simply trusting the character of God. A person with mature faith can be steady in his journey.  He doesn't cower in fear or run ahead of God.  He is content to walk quietly along the path God has put him on.  He believes deep down that it is the very path that will lead him to know God's tender heart even more deeply.

The other morning, I woke up with the words "rod and staff" on my mind.  I repeated the phrase over and over again as I lay in bed..."thy rod and thy staff comfort me."  As I got up, I wondered just why a rod and a staff are so comforting.  The below is straight from Charles Spurgeon.

1.  Rod:  used for numbering the sheep.  It is comforting to know I am numbered along with the redeemed.  He knows me by name.

2.  Rod:  used for rule.  It is comforting to know He reigns in sovereignty.  Nothing can come across my path that He has not allowed or ordained. "Happy is the man who perceives the hand of God in everything."

3.  Rod/staff: used for guidance.  The rod leads us...often in a way that we would not have chosen on our own.  But, we can be assured that it is the safe and right way.  If He is our Guide, He is responsible for the road ahead.

4.  Rod/staff:  used for protection.  The rod and staff are used against the beasts of the field.  The shepherd assures us that we will not be torn apart by the enemy.  He does protect His elect.

5.  Rod/staff:  used to urge us onward.  We might stay in the same place forever, refusing growth, but instead, He gives us a divine nudge toward new heights.

Each of us can find comfort in our Lord's rod and staff.  We can choose to rest in the fact that we know He will bring us to the other side.  The valley of the shadow won't last forever. 

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