By Brooke Holt
“The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth. He fulfills the desire of those who fear him; he also hears their cry and saves them.” Psalm 145:18-19
During the Covid lockdown, I had the privilege of teaching through the Gospel of Matthew on zoom. I entitled this Bible study “God With Us”, because I was overwhelmed by the fact the Gospel of Matthew begins with the declaration God has come to dwell among his people in the person of Jesus (Matthew 1:23). Then the Gospel ends with Jesus’ words to his disciples: “And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age” (Matthew 28:20).
God is with us. God is with you. God has always been with his people. David wrote in Psalm 145, “The Lord is near to all who call on him” (verse 18). When you put your faith in Jesus Christ, he came to dwell within you through his Spirit. The Lord is not just near you but in you. Thus, he hears your every call. He sees, knows, and loves you completely. The Lord is eager not just to save your soul from hell but to save you from sin, Satan, and every fleshly stronghold.
There is nothing the Lord cannot do in and for you. He will not do some things based on his perfect knowledge and plan; however, the Lord invites you to bring every cry, pain, need, and desire to him. As God dwells in you through the Holy Spirit, he does his transformative work in your life. The more you surrender to him and his work, the more you become like his Son.
Think about Jesus for a moment. Jesus’ greatest desire and passion was to fulfill the will of God on Earth. That meant denying his flesh, holding his tongue, and allowing people to mistreat and misunderstand him. It meant being rejected, beaten, and nailed to a cross. It wasn’t easy for Jesus to do the will of his Father on this earth, yet it remained his desire.
David says the Lord fulfills the desires of those who fear him. How do you receive these words? Do you believe God longs to fulfill your desires, and do you regularly surrender those desires to him so that he can hear them and even transform them? God longs to transform your desires because he wants the very best for you. Humans tend to settle for what is easy, quick, and feels or tastes good—this is why fast food restaurants thrive today!
The Lord wants you to surpass fast food so that you can enjoy his glorious feast. There may be times he does not fulfill your immediate request and desire. When that happens, are you willing to surrender that desire to him and ask him if he has something better? God’s ways are higher than yours (see Isaiah 55:8-9). Why settle for processed nuggets when he has the best cut of meat right off the grill and ready for you?
Consider how you approach God with your desires and needs. Do you trust the Lord to hear, understand, and lead you from your limited understanding to his very best? We would love to hear your thoughts in the comments.
Face the Dawn: Advent is like celebrating a national holiday in a foreign land — like observing the 4th of July as an expatriate. Locals do not understand the fuss. Advent is equal parts cherishing and missing home. AND it’s a mix of loving this world while getting ready to leave it behind. This makes Advent the most human and most complex celebration we have. Isaiah the prophet, David the psalmist, Paul the apostle, John the Baptist, Mary, Joseph, and Jesus all lived in one world and longed for the next. They loved this world and loved the world to come even more. In these 28 devotions in Face the Dawn, join them in wearing the paradox of Christianity- this world may be our home, but that world is HOME.
Comments will be approved before showing up.