Tuesday, March 1, 2011

"Be still and know that I am God"

Got to hear Ryan Bradley teach on Sunday at C4. He did an amazing job! Ryan is from South Africa so he has the coolest accent! He is so passionate about God and when he teaches he is so animated because he just wants you to get it...I was blown away by his message on Sunday. Blown. Away. Ryan began with saying "The same God who will be exalted above the nations came for you, died for you...and you don't have to call him King, you can call him Daddy!" He said the only way revival will happen is if we fall in love again with the word of God and hold on to the truth of who God is...so his message was reminding us who God is to us.
Ryan taught from Genesis 19:1-17. At first I thought...that's a really odd passage of scripture...it talks about Lot and his family living in Sodom and God removing them from the land...but he really showed me how intense and relevant that scripture is for my life.
Lot was a righteous man of God...and he was living in Sodom...Sodom is an evil place, the people there live a life full of pride, excess of everything, prosperity of ease, consumed in addiction, and sexual immorality...but Lot was living there...with his family. Then Ryan asked us if we were living in Sodom...in a dark place...spiritual darkness, or a sinful lifestyle...and that question kind of was like a newsflash to me...I'd never seen it that way...made that scripture a lot more clear for me.
Ryan reminded us that God is our Creator, our Father, and our Savior
He didn't create us to live in darkness, he created us to go into the darkness and shine! We are God's children...he spoke the world into existence but he valued us so much that he used his hands to knit us together. We were created for so much more than darkness...than this world...
God is always with us, he doesn't run from us, he runs towards us, especially when we are living in the darkness...we linger in the darkness because of temptation, sin and addiction...it grabs us and pulls us in, but God knows we will linger and he doesn't let us stay there...he grabs us and pulls us out.
Ryan said that when we are farthest into the darkness, God took up the cross, all our sin, and he put 'you' on his back and lifted you up. The cross was sufficient then and it's sufficient now...God saves us, we can't save ourselves...He deserves our everything.
Ryan's message on Sunday really wowed me...I'd never thought about the cross as "he put 'you' on his back and lifted you up" That was really intense...and I realized that it's really easy to be pulled into darkness, and to not even realize you're there...but God is always speaking to us, we just have to listen...and if we listen, he will pull us out...back towards him...because he loves us...his love is a love we can build our lives on.
No matter where we are, how deep in Sodom...in sin we are, there is no place we can be that is without his presence:
Psalm 139:7-10
Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast.
Be encouraged, no matter how hard life is, no matter how dark life seems, God is still with you, remind yourself who God is, and listen for his voice...he will be there...because he will not let his child stay in darkness.

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