Each week I write a promise which is then posted the following Monday and sent out to those who have requested it, via email. As I was writing the promise for next Monday, I felt the Holy Spirit lead me to also speak about it on my blog for June on our church web-site.
In Amos 5 a lament, a deep expression of sorrow, and a call for repentance is given to the fallen nation of Israel for they had tragically not returned to God. We read in Amos 5: 4-6a “This is what the Lord says to the house of Israel: ‘Seek Me and live; do not seek Bethel, do not go to Gilgal, do not journey to Beersheba. For Gilgal will surely go into exile, and Bethel will be reduced to nothing, Seek the Lord and live”
Bethel, Gilgal and Beersheba were all places where the Lord met His people and did the miraculous. They all carried the wonderful memories of a display of the power of God. The sad truth is they had evidently become places of pilgrimage and idolatry for the nation of Israel.
We are called to remember, bring to memory, where the Lord met with us, where He did the miraculous in our lives but if we are not careful, they too can become places of idolatry for us.
There is a church back home which people annually make pilgrimages to; some travel as much as 5 miles on their knees because it seems some miraculous displays of the Lord’s power have taken place in people’s lives there. Because of that, people have turned this little small church and the dirt in this one hole in this church, into a shrine, an idol you might say, and we know how the Lord feels about idolatry. The Apostle Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 10:14 “Therefore, my dear friends, flee from idolatry“
Here’s a truthful saying about trying to seek the Lord in our past experiences; we won’t find God in the past, not even our own past experiences of God’s power. When God revealed His name to Moses, it wasn’t the ‘Great I Was‘ but instead the great I AM!
Calling to memory the Lord’s mighty power, His times of deliverance and provision in our lives are memorials we need to erect in our hearts and minds of what our Lord can do, but they are not places where we are to set up camp. The Lord desires to great and mighty new things in our lives, but if we are camped out in those times of the past, out of fear for our future, we will surely miss them.
The Lord declares in Isaiah 43:19 “See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland.”
In a sense the Lord was declaring to the nation of Israel in Amos 5, and to His people today who have made an idol of His past workings in their lives, “Do not seek what I did in the past for I have new things to reveal to you. Seek Me today and live!!”
Are you seeking the Lord today or have you made an idol of what He did for you yesterday? It’s the Lord Himself, not His workings that we need to be seeking after every day of our lives. Rejoice in what the Lord did for you in the past but seek after Him today, for the new things on the horizon and LIVE!!
Image Credits: Photo by Kyle Loftus on Unsplash
Categories: A Pastor's Blog