Thursday, January 22, 2015

4 Keys to God's Blessing

As individuals with varying personalities, desires, passions, goals, strengths and weaknesses, it’s easy to see where we differ with others in many areas. However, I believe that every truly born-again, God-loving Christian has this sincere desire: To be blessed by God. I have yet to meet a believer who desires God’s judgment or condemnation on his life, and I doubt I ever will. We all want God to be happy with us. From a child-parent perspective, we long for our Heavenly Father to be “proud” of us. Maybe this is a bit selfish, but when God thinks of David Beale, I want a smile to come to His face – not a frown, a tear or a look of disappointment – a smile. I really want God to be happy with me! We all want that, don’t we?
Have you ever seen the look on a child’s face when a parent, teacher, coach or pastor is visibly proud or happy with him? It’s amazing! The face of a child who knows he has the approval of his father or authority literally beams with joy and gladness. His countenance can’t help but display what is going on inside his heart. As Proverbs 15:13 says:
A merry heart maketh a cheerful countenance”
In Exodus 34, the blessing of God was so apparent in Moses’ life that even his physical appearance reflected it.
And it came to pass, when Moses came down from mount Sinai with the two tables of testimony in Moses’ hand, when he came down from the mount, thatMoses wist not that the skin of his face shone while he talked with him. –Exodus 34:29
“And the children of Israel saw the face of Moses, that the skin of Moses’ face shone:” –Exodus 34:29
So what is the “secret” to finding God’s blessing? How did Moses find God’s favor in his life? The answer is found in the previous chapter where I notice four keys to God’s blessing:

1. Get face-to-face with God.

“And the Lord spake unto Moses face to face, as a man speaketh unto his friend.” –Exodus 33:11
Determine to walk with God and do it daily. Develop and cultivate an incredibly close relationship with God Almighty; after all, that’s really what He desires from us! That’s why man was created in the first place – for God’s pleasure. Nothing brings more joy to the heart of God than when His children desire a deep, abiding relationship with Him.
And when you come to God, pull back “the vail.” Nothing hinders the growth of a relationship more than dishonesty. Bare your heart, your cares, your concerns, your trials, your struggles, your temptations – your everything! Even though He already knows everything there is to know about you (Jeremiah 17:10), tell Him anyway. After all, He knows the “real” you. What’s the point of trying to fool the Omniscient One?
“But when Moses went in before the Lord to speak with him, he took the vail off”–Exodus 34:34

2. Make God your closest Friend.

Moses’ meetings with God were not “business” meetings. Picture in your mind how you communicate with your very best friend – maybe even a childhood friend. You probably laughed together and cried together. There were most likely times of lighthearted enjoyment and seasons of heartbreak and sorrow. But as friends, you were always there for one another – in the good times and the bad times.
Verse 11 states that Moses spoke to God and God spake to Moses like a “man speaketh unto his friend.” What a beautiful description of the fellowship they enjoyed!  But Moses didn’t have sole rights to God’s friendship. God offers this type of a closeness to anyone who wants it. God is a Friend to all, but not all are friends to Him. God has extended an invitation to you to not only join His family, but also to enjoy a close, intimate friendship with Him. Have you accepted Christ as your Savior? If so, great! Have you also accepted Christ as your closest Friend?
“There is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother.” –Proverbs 18:24

3. Make it a priority to know God.

In the busyness of today’s culture, we have so many things, people and ambitions that are all clamoring for our attention. And though these things are not always necessarily bad or evil, Satan can use them to divert our focus away from this Friend Who sticks closer than any brother. I’m sure that Moses had a million different things that could have earned his focus, but his priority in life was to know the Lord. I believe that God’s blessing on Moses’ life was a byproduct of His desire to walk and talk with God.
“I pray thee, if I have found grace in thy sight, shew me now thy way, that I may know thee –Exodus 33:13

4. Decide to include God in every decision you make – whether big or small.

After witnessing the miracles of the plagues in Egypt, the freeing of God’s people from bondage, the salvation of the parting of the Red Sea, the daily provision in the wilderness and the reception of the Ten Commandments (twice), I think it may have been easy for Moses to think that he had all the answers and was doing a pretty good job leading on his own. I’m sure Satan tempted Moses with private thoughts of pride. But even after all the amazing things he had seen in the wilderness, Moses didn’t forget who the real Miracle Worker was. In fact, Moses had seen enough of God’s working and had enjoyed enough of God’s fellowship to decide that he didn’t want to go anywhere or do anything without God.
The first time we dropped off my son at the church nursery, we knew immediately who he really wanted to be with. It’s not that the nursery workers weren’t kind, loving ladies. They had never done anything to make him feel unsafe or uncomfortable. Our son just wanted to be with Mom and Dad so strongly, that he didn’t want to go anywhere without us. As a parent, I know how good it makes me feel to know that my son wants to be with me. So how do you think that makes God feel? If you want God’s hand of blessing on your life, learn a lesson from the life of Moses and make God’s will the deciding factor in everything that you do.
“And he (God) said, My presence shall go with thee, and I will give thee rest. And he (Moses) said unto him, If thy presence go not with me, carry us not up hence. –Exodus 34:14-15
The most blessed people I know are those who love God with all of their heart. They please God with their daily choices. They desire God’s direction and presence more than anything else. They spend time with Him throughout each day. And as a result, they have joy that the world cannot offer. Now that’s what I call blessing

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