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Reality 7

Reality 7

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Published by tiandwi

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Published by: tiandwi on Oct 27, 2008
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06/16/2009

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Reality 7: The Fruit of ObedienceExodus 3:7-15; Isaiah 46:9-10Cascades Fellowship CRC, JX MINovember 14, 2004Series: Seven Realities of Experiencing God
A very good friend of the family came to belief in Christ by a very difficultroute. Raised in a nominally Catholic home, she had seen the form of religion butnever got a real glimpse of Christianity. Conditions in her home conflicted with shehad learned in catechism and Sunday school.As an adult, she remained nominally Catholic, but approached it withcynicism. For a brief period, she participated in a Christian Reformed Church, butfelt that the congregation she was a part of did not put into practice what theypreached. Yet, something inside would not let her abandon faith altogether.The turning point came when she began feeling the yearning of motherhood.Being single, she began looking into adoption. I remember when she told me thestory of what she went through to adopt her daughter. The trial, disappointment,and distress she endured on the path of adoption were truly biblical in proportion.Near despair, she finally received word – your baby is waiting.With tears welling up in her eyes, she said her faith was affirmed and sheknew that Jesus loved her “When I held that tiny little girl in my hands – that Godentrusted this precious life into my hands – I knew then that he loved me.” She hadheard it all her life, from various sources, but those sources failed to be channels of grace. She had never seen it.
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Now, the evidence of God’s love lay squirming in her hands – an infant, ababy, meant for her. She could see the love of God, the answer to prayer thatmade sense of the painful, yet enriching journey. She understood then that theyearning for motherhood she felt was God’s call and her dogged persistence asobedience. The result of her obedience was God revealing his love to her in atangible way. She now knew God and could trust his heart toward her.It was Job who, after being reminded that he was accusing the SovereignLord of all creation of unfair treatment, said,
“My ears had heard of you but nowmy eyes have seen you. Therefore I despise myself and repent in dust andashes.”
Something dramatic happens when God comes on the scene. We seethat the God we thought we knew is more glorious, more wonderful, more worthy of praise than we ever imagined.For a little over a month now we have talking about seven realities of experiencing God. We began this journey by recognizing that God is always atwork around us. He is actively engaged in carrying out his purposes for his creation – even in the small details of our lives. We then spoke about the reality that wewere created for a love relationship with God. God expresses his love to us byincluding us in his redemptive work.This is a critical reality for us to grasp because when we realize that Goddemonstrates his love toward his people by including them in his work, the thirdreality begins to really hit home. God’s primary means of working is through those
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who love him. Our response to God’s invitation to join him in his work is a vitalindicator of our love and gratitude for him.The fourth reality we observed is that God still speaks to his people, eventoday. We hear his voice the Scriptures, the indwelling Holy Spirit guides us andreveals truth, God nudges us in prayer and through circumstances into his ways.He even speaks to us through the church to reveal himself and his purposes.The fifth and sixth realities are closely tied together. You must make major adjustments in your life to follow after God. To join God in his work often requireslife adjustments. This will lead us to a crisis of belief, because God reveals himself through us by calling us to do things we cannot do without him. What he calls us towill always require faith and action. What we do at the point of a crisis of belief says volumes about what we believe about God.Which leads us to our seventh – and at least for this series – the final realityof experiencing God. We come to know God by the way we experience hisredemptive work in our lives as we obey and follow him.Now, that statement requires a little unpacking, because we have alreadytalked this year about the way we come to know God. You may remember whenwe discussed Article 2 of the Belgic Confession. Then, we spoke of two ways. Weknow him first by general revelation – or more simply put, we know God by all thathe has created. We see how intricately the human body is made, how specific thetilt of the earth has to be to create the sort of atmosphere needed for life, how exactthe distance is between the planets that keep the solar system in place, how the
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