Thursday, July 30, 2009

Devotional 300709

Dear brothers and sisters,
Good morning. Can’t believe it is Thursday already. Time just flies by so fast that we can hardly catch up with it. While I was driving the younger foster kid to a summer camp pick up site, I suddenly remembered I did not sign his parental permission form. “O I forgot your permission form, what shall we do?” I asked. Then he said, “I don’t think they require permission form for college retreat!” Yes. He is a college student now. He is no longer a kid! Time really flies fast. You can’t stop it but you can only make good use of it. Help us Lord, to seize every moment of our time to enjoy our relationship with You, and fully utilize the potential and talents that You endowed in us for Your pleasure. Amen!

"Jesus would not entrust himself to them, for he knew all men. He did not need man's testimony about man, for he knew what was in a man" (John 2:24-25). Disillusionment means that there are no more false judgments in life. To be undeceived by disillusionment may leave us cynical and unkindly severe in our judgment of others, but the disillusionment which comes from God brings us to the place where we see men and women as they really are, and yet there is no cynicism, we have no stinging, bitter things to say. Many of the cruel things in life spring from the fact that we suffer from illusions. We are not true to one another as facts; we are true only to our ideas of one another. Everything is either delightful and fine, or mean and immoral, according to our idea.

The refusal to be disillusioned is the cause of much of the suffering in human life. It works in this way - if we love a human being and do not love God, we demand of him or her every ounce of perfection and righteousness, and when we do not get it we become cruel and bitter; we are demanding of a human being that which he or she cannot give. There is only one Being Who can satisfy the last aching abyss of the human heart, and that is the Lord Jesus Christ. Why Our Lord is apparently so severe regarding every human relationship is because He knows that every relationship not based on loyalty to God will end in disaster. Our Lord trusted no man, yet He was never suspicious, never bitter. Our Lord's confidence in God and in what His grace could do for any person was so perfect, that He despaired of no one. If our trust is placed in human beings, we shall end in despairing of everyone.

I totally agree with Brother Chambers’ insight on our attitude toward human relationship. It has to be built upon our relationship with God. The greatest commandment is for us to love God with all our hearts and minds before we love our neighbors as ourselves (Matt 22:37). If we reverse the order, our relation with people will become disaster. Only when we love God wholeheartedly and drink from His love on a daily basis, we will find strength to love others with His love. If our hearts are not fed by His love, we will be hungry for human love or any kind of love, which will not truly fulfill our deepest thirst and hunger from within. As a result we jump from one person to the other or from one fellowship to the other, looking for love that only God can give. After many attempts and failure, we become despair and bitter, and we become cynical or critical toward people and fellowship. We are completely enslaved within our own illusions.

In order to break through from our illusions, we need to return to our basis: put God first in our lives and recognize the root problem of mankind without God. And then we work toward this goal to dwell in His love or abide in Christ. There is no shortcut to resolve our deep seated illusions, but to focus on building a genuine relationship with God. The way to differentiate the fake from the real dollar bill, according to a teller, is to spend more time looking at the genuine one. The way to get rid of the weeds in your lawn, according to a gardener, is to focus on growing the lawn in stead of removing the weeds. In the same token, the way to resolve illusion toward human relationship is to focus on building our loving relationship with Christ.

Love you through His love,

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