“Let none of you suffer…as a busybody in other men’s matters” (1 Peter 4:15).
Mind Your Own Business! We’ve all said it at some time or other. Maybe we used the initials cited in the title of this page to make our point.
How easy it is to gossip; to stick our nose into someone else’s affairs. We are responsible to the Lord for the things we allow in our own life, not what we try to find out and pass on about others. Rather, let others know you as someone that can be trusted to keep their confidence, to provide a sympathetic listening ear. The only business we should have our nose into is our own business that the Lord has given us to do. David said: “The king’s business required haste” (1 Samuel 21:8). Daniel said: “I rose up, and did the king’s business” (Daniel 8:27).
When I was a young person and went to summer camp, there was a motto on the dining room wall with these words:
“And He said unto them, Where is your faith?” (Luke 8:25).
Faith must take no holiday, but there are always times when it seems to be at least temporarily absent.
We know too, that there are always deputies ready and willing to step in. Mr. Doubt, Mr. Fear, Mr. Anxiety, Mr Hopeless, and their many companions. These are fellows of long experience, and will act at any time. If faith takes a vacation, some most undesirable substitute will take over the vacancy. Faith must be on duty every moment of every day.
In times of trial, when the storms of life are high and the going hard, Satan will suggest that faith needs a holiday, or even just a break. But don’t let it happen. This is just the time when faith needs to stand guard, for there is such a thing as “the work of faith” (2 Thessalonians 1:11). It was when fear had usurped the position of faith that Jesus inquired of the disciples while in the boat on sea He had just calmed, “Where is your faith?” (Luke 8:25).
“I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever” (Psalm 23:6).
We have been speaking this week of “the house of the Lord,” and now we notice that this well known verse from the Shepherd Psalm is something yet future.
Not only did David delight to be with others in the presence of the Lord here on earth and to walk every day, individually, in the presence of the Lord, but he anticipated the time when he would dwell in “the house of the Lord forever.” What a hope he had!
What a hope we have too! For us we know “the house of the Lord” in a far more intimate way. The Lord spoke of it as “My Father’s house” (John 14:2). This is the final and eternal home of every believer in Christ. Let’s not lose sight of this wonderful hope and home.
So, to sum up the past three days, we have collective and individual enjoyment of the Lord’s presence, and the future joy of being with all the redeemed in His house, with Himself, for eternity.
Yesterday we mentioned David’s delight in being invited by others to enter the House of the Lord. Here is another instance of David’s use of that same expression: “One thing have I desired of the Lord, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord, and to enquire in His temple” (Psalm 27:4).
David didn’t just want to enjoy the presence of the Lord on special occasions, and with others, but he wanted to individually enjoy the company of the Lord every day of his life.
Wow! What a desire! Is that your desire as another week begins? The Lord is always with us. He has said, “Lo, I am with you alway” (Matthew 28:20). The question is, do we walk in such a way that we feel and enjoy His presence all the days of our life? Let’s make a real effort to dwell consciously in His presence this week.
“I was glad when they said unto me, Let us go into the house of the Lord” (Psalm 122:1).
David was glad for an invitation to enter with others into the House of the Lord. Notice the word “us.” This is plural…this is with others…fellow-believers…those who have the same desire, and that is to be together collectively in the Lord’s presence. To be where He is, and where He desires that His own would gather.
Just as David had this invitation and privilege, so do we on another Lord’s Day. Are we also glad? Do we look forward with joyful anticipation to being with those of “like precious faith” where the Lord is in the midst, and to partake of the “Lord’s supper” at the “Lord’s table”? He has promised, “Where two or three are gathered together in My name, there am I in the midst of them” (Matthew 18:20).
As we come into His presence, may our hearts be overflowing with gladness, thanksgiving, praise, and most of all worship.
“We have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ” (Romans 5:1).
How vital it is to have peace with God!
Some time ago I read a book entitled Peace Child. In the book the author, Don Richardson, gives a moving account of how the Sawi people of Irian Jaya came to understand the way of salvation through Jesus Christ.
For many months he and his family tried to find some way to communicate the gospel to this tribe in a way that they would understand. Then they discovered the key for which they had been praying.
All demonstrations of kindness expressed by the Sawi were regarded with suspicion except one act. If a father gave his own son to his enemy, his sacrificial deed showed that he could be trusted. Furthermore, everyone who touched that child was brought into friendly relationship with the father. The Sawi were then taught that in a similar way God’s beloved Son could bring them eternal peace. “For He is our peace” (Ephesians 2:14).
Q. How can we know the Lord’s will, and how do we know it’s not just something we want to claim as His will?
A. God wants us to know His will. “In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths” (Proverbs 3:6). “If any man will [desires] to do His will, he shall know” (John 7:17).
The key to knowing His will is a desire to do it, coupled with orderly consistent reading and searching of the Word of God. “Thy Word is a lamp unto my feet” (Psalm 199:105). We also read: “Be ye doers of the Word, and not hearer only” (James 1:22). If we don’t know the will of God it is never failure on His part, but always some hindrance on ours.
The more we walk in His company the more we will know His will, and His desires will become our desires. “Delight thyself also in the Lord; and He shall give thee the desires of thine heart” (Psalm 37:4). We also read, “I will guide thee with Mine eye” (Psalm 32:8). You have to be close to someone and looking at their face to have them speak with their eye.
Usually when we hear the words, addict, addiction, addicting, or addicted, we think of something with a bad connotation. But there is an addiction in the Word of God that received a commendation from the Apostle Paul. “I beseech you, brethren, ye know the house of Stephanas, that it is the firstfruits of Achaia, and that they have addicted themselves to the ministry of the saints” (1 Corinthians 16:15).
It is a wonderful thing when a whole household has a desire to serve the Lord and His people. Not just the parents, but the children and young people too.
It is good to be addicted to the service of Christ! This will bring joy to the heart of the Lord Jesus, to others and to ourselves.
There was another home that had encouraged and helped Paul, and he says of that household, “The Lord give mercy unto the house of Onesiphorus; for he oft refreshed me” (2 Timothy 1:16).
We also read, “We ought to lay down our lives for the brethren” (1 John 3:16).
26 Lift up your eyes on high, and behold who hath created these things, that bringeth out their host by number: He calleth them all by names by the greatness of His might, for that He is strong in power; not one faileth.
27 Why sayest thou, O Jacob, and speakest, O Israel, My way is hid from the Lord, and my judgment is passed over from my God?
28 Hast thou not known? hast thou not heard, that the everlasting God, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is weary? there is no searching of His understanding.
29 He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength.
30 Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall:
31 But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.
There are some people who attain to much greater heights than others. Some feel they have done nothing and consider themselves failures. Others appear to have so many talents and are greatly admired. Let’s not be proud of our achievements, for as the Apostle Paul says, “For who maketh thee to differ from another? and what hast thou that thou didst not receive? now if thou didst receive it, why dost thou glory, as if thou hadst not received it?” (1 Corinthians 4:7).
We are all dependent upon God and are called upon to praise Him. If the trees of the forest could talk, might we not hear something like this:
I’m the topmost leaf of the highest twig
On the tree of the loftiest height;
But I owe my life to the trunk below,
And the roots that are out of sight.
Therefore he who is highest in the kingdom of God owes his position to Him who took the lowest station, as do we all, therefore let us never think we are independent.