This morning I woke up pondering something C.J. Caufield spoke about during the Memorial Day retreat, which I wanted to share.
The theme for the weekend was “Life is Worship.” C.J. preached about how our lives are meant to be a form of worshipping God. In other words, we as Christians are meant to live our lives as if they are a constant ongoing worship service in God’s honor. One of the passages C.J. read was Psalm 95, which reads like a praise and worship song, calling us to come and worship and to bow down before God.
How many times have you been in a situation where you aren’t making a God-honoring choice, but it’s such a small matter that you feel it won’t affect how others see you? I know I’ve had my share of those “eh, it’s only a small sin” moments. However, those moments do affect how God sees us; and as his children, we should be bothered by the fact that some of the choices we make displease him. He’s our spiritual father and our physical creator; wouldn’t you want to please him?
C.J. also read from Exodus 17:1-7, which tells about Moses leading the people from the wilderness of sin and eventually camping at Rephidim. The people grumbled about not having any drinking water. Moses asked the people why they were complaining to him and testing the Lord, but the people’s demands drove Moses to beg God for help. God told Moses step-by-step how to produce drinkable water for the people. In the end, the rock on Mount Sinai that God appointed as the water-providing spot was named Massah (“test”) and Meribah (“arguing”). This was to remind the people that they tested the Lord by saying “Is the Lord here with us or not?” instead of just trusting him.
There was a time when I constantly wondered if God was really there with me during my junior year of high school. I was experiencing so many health issues and none of the doctors could agree on what was the root of the problem. Now that I think back on it, I feel like it was a test of faith from God, and sometimes I wish I handled it differently. However, I know God isn’t done with me yet and there are still many more tests to come. Maybe you are experiencing similar faith-based challenges. Even though there will be times when you question his being there with you, know that he’s standing right beside you saying, “Here I am, (insert your name). I’m not going anywhere.” A good verse to memorize when you feel frustrated and alone is Job 42:2, “I know that you can do anything, and no one can stop you.”
James 1:19 tells us, “Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters: You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry.” There are some who are quick to speak to God asking for help, slow to listen for his reply, and quick to get angry because God doesn’t give them the solution they wanted. During the last morning chapel service, C.J. reminded us, “Prayer doesn’t change things. More preferably, prayer changes people and it’s those changed people who modify things.”