Living within the hem

While staring into the numerous faces of my students just the other morning, I learned a valuable lesson about teaching, even living.

We long for a boundary.

With that sentence I may have lost the approval of fellow outdoorsmen and hikers.  Even the most adventurous hiker though, needs to know basic limitations to ensure his survival.  We put pictures in frames.  Countries have borders.  Just as I learned through teaching, not only do we need to have the basic requirements of a project, but we crave for the bigger picture.  Deep down we desire  to see the scope of what we’re doing and how it will fit within the much greater masterpiece that we call life.

The amazing part is that God created us to be exactly that way!  He gave us His Law in order that we would know His requirements to living a perfect life, to live free from sin.  Remember, His Law is an expression of love, too.  “Do not steal, do not murder, do not commit adultery, honor your father and your mother, remember the Sabbath, etc.”  Following the Ten Commandments protect us and others from the ravaging wages of sin: death.

Yet there is another way that God gives us a boundary to preserve and protect our lives…

He is the boundary.

Close your eyes and think of this image, there is no place that you can ever be away from the presence of God.  His presence encompasses all of the earth, and there is no place to which you can run and escape the palm of His hand.

Rest in this truth today… Rest in the presence of the Lord!  Live within the hem.

Praying your day is filled with SONshine,

Peace in His Presence

 

We are all looking for it, aren’t we?  The peace of mind so profound that it saturates our souls.

 We crave it.

We long for it, and

we can find it.

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.  And the PEACE of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.  Finally brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.  What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me–practice these things, and the GOD of peace will be with you.”            –   Philippians 4:5-9   –

As God’s creation, we were created with the desire–with the necessity–to live and dwell in the fullness of His presence!  Such peace comes when can unashamedly come before our Maker and rest.

It is true that He is loving, but just as true as that statement, God is holy and righteous, and he requires that we be holy, too.  That’s where we feel the tension building in our lives…

Adam and Eve felt this tension as the earth fell because of their sin and disobedience.  They felt the sin reveal their nakedness and shame, so they hid from God.  Because of their sin, they were separated from the Maker that had walked with them in the Garden.  (Genesis 3:7-8).

“But God,

being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us,

even when we were dead in our trespasses,

made us alive together with Christ–by grace you have been saved.”

Ephesians 2:4-5

This is why we have peace in God through Christ!  “The wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life IN Christ Jesus” (Romans 6:23).  Justice was served as Jesus Christ hung on the cross and took on the wrath required to clear the debt of all humanity’s sin (Hebrews 9:11-28).  Therefore, those who believe that Jesus is the Son of God–God born in human flesh to live a perfect life free from sin, take on God’s wrath for sin on our behalf, and return to the Father triumphant even over death–are forgiven and free (Colossians 2:6-15).  When man sees his brokenness yet sees Christ and His perfection and says, “Only by the blood of the Lamb, I am made alive,” he may become the righteousness of God (2 Corinthians 5:21).

If we believe He is our Lord, Savior, and King, our hearts and minds will be guarded in Christ Jesus.  Then there is no need to be anxious; we can rest knowing that our sin is forgiven and have confidence in going to God.  Thankfulness follows because we are reminded of the ability to come before God, washed clean from our sin and unholiness, in the righteousness of Christ.  When we live the way that has designed us to, not only does the peace of God stay within us, but HE, the GOD of peace, will be walking with us.

In that very nearness of Him, we’ll have a taste of heaven and

 the peace that only His presence brings.