Friends with God

2

 

Long ago I spent over a year in America and I was introduced to the practice of dipping bread into an oil and vinegar concoction. Delicious. My kiddos now love doing the same.

So, on to a lipped plate goes a generous dose of olive oil, followed by a hearty splash of balsamic vinegar.

But you know what? You can’t mix them. You can’t actually get them to swirl together. They separate too fast.

So you swoosh your bread around in them, get a little of each soaked in and then you eat. You can taste them both, but you can’t mix them.

And so it is with how we try and divide our loyalties in life.

We cannot be friends with the world and friends with God.

Our study in James today is Chapter 4,verses 1-4…take a look:

What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you?  You desire but do not have, so you kill. You covet but you cannot get what you want, so you quarrel and fight. You do not have because you do not ask God. When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.

You adulterous people, don’t you know that friendship with the world means enmity against God? Therefore, anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God.

The Battles Inside Us

 

We need to recognise that there is a war going on around us. Satan wants to take us down. He hates us. He will lure us any way he can away from God, God’s word, the truth and having faith.

We all face different battles.

For some of us it will be work and money.

For some of us it will be the opinions of others.

For some of us it will be past hurts and pains.

For others jealousy and envy, or discontent and despair…there are a whole hosts of battles out there we are facing and we need to acknowledge we are in a fight.

When we don’t, we give way to the devil’s schemes, we display characteristics that are not in keeping with those that reflect the One who has saved us, our motives are confused and we will end up in a right old mess.

We can unwittingly become so tied up with all the wrong things that we have become friends with all the wrong things.

 

The World v God

 

If we’re honest, the world can seem to offer us a lot.

Big houses, fancy holidays, nice cars, lovely clothes…happinesses based on consumerism.

We can keep up with the Joneses, we can have what everyone else has…we can want what everyone else has and do our best to work ourselves crazy to get it.

But every worldly pursuit has a shelf life.

It will simply NOT live past these earthly days.

When we stand before the Lord, what do we want to show him? What do we want to say we did with what we gave us?

I bought a nice big house and lived in it happily ever after?

 

Whether You Eat or Drink…

 

Friends, we have plenty of blessings in our lives. It’s not the blessings themselves that are the problem. It’s what we do with them.

We need to be constantly keeping check on ourselves.

Did we use what the Lord gave us well? Did we open our nice big home to those who needed it? And that can come in many different forms…it doesn’t mean we all need to turn our houses into homeless shelters or soup kitchens, but we do need to give back to God what He has given to us, however creatively we can.

If our mindset was to look at every blessing poured out to us and find a way to give it back to the One who blessed us, then how different would our lives look? How different might the lives of those around us look, if they could see Jesus in us, in what we did with what we had?

For one, our lives might NOT look like the description given to us here in James 4. Let’s look today:

 

 

Thoughts for Today

 

 

  1. In what ways can we recognise ourselves in these opening verses of Chapter 4? Are there things in our lives we are battling that we need to consider bringing to God?
  2. What does friendship with the world look like? In what ways are we to be friends with people without becoming friends with the world?
  3. In what ways can we guard our hearts and minds against the devil’s schemes, so avoiding the battles we face and falter at?

Prayers for Today

 

 

  • Consider what you need to lay at the foot of the cross today. What battles do you need help with? Ask the Lord for his help today.
Grace and Love
Helen x

 

 

 

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