>In What Does the Lord Take Pleasure?


Okay, okay, I’m out of adjectives. But I was slapped across the face this morning during my (pretty) regular morning-time-in-the-Word.

Psalm 149.4  For the Lord takes pleasure in His people
I won’t add to this…I’ll just ask a question or two…
Do you feel a bit defeated, discouraged, distant? Inadequate, insecure, ineffective? Failing, fatigued, faulty? Unloved, unappreciated, un-used? Grumpy, grouchy, growling?
the Lord takes pleasure in You
I said I wouldn’t add a comment, but…
I have four children ranging in age from 25 to 7…they (like I) often do dumb things, don’t do right things, and disappoint, disturb, and derange me…but I love them, am on their side, and take pleasure in them.
And I’m just a dummy (I hear the choruses of “amen!”).
Our Abba, our heavenly Father, “takes pleasure in us.” And, as is His love, so is His pleasure…He does not love us “if” or “when” or “because”…He loves us with an everlasting love…and that is rather neat.

>What’s The State of Your Union?

>Chris Tomlinson, a graduate from the U.S. Air Force Academy and the UCLA Anderson School of Business, is a businessman and writer who desires to see people realize the beauty and joy of knowing Jesus. He blogs regularly HERE 

This is Tomlinson’s (not to be confused with worship guy Chris Tomlin) provoking “state of my union”:http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?t=jacksjots-20&o=1&p=8&l=bpl&asins=0736926933&fc1=000000&IS2=1&lt1=_blank&m=amazon&lc1=0000FF&bc1=000000&bg1=FFFFFF&f=ifr

The state of my union is not that good. I don’t think you’re supposed to say that sort of thing, but it’s true, so I guess it’s worth saying.
I’m not talking about our country, which remains strong despite its many issues. And I’m not talking about my marriage, which is still my greatest earthly delight.  The union I’m talking about is the union that matters most:  my union with Christ.
The struggle I face today is the cavern that exists between what I know and what I live. I say that Jesus is the greatest satisfaction to our soul’s deepest cravings, and I believe this deeply.  But I’m not living in the embrace of this reality today. There are just far too many concerns on my heart. I tell myself this is simply a busy season of life, and this will all soon pass, and I’ll be able to reconnect with God once more before long.
But tomorrow is never the best day to commit to the Lord. James wrote that we “do not know what tomorrow will bring,” and he’s right. Today is always the best day to abide in Christ.
The state of my union is not Jesus’ fault—His faithfulness has never wavered. I suppose I could get down on myself, working to summon the motivation to go and make our relationship right again.  But this kind of striving never produces lasting results. I know that we’re supposed to work out our salvation, but it’s telling that Jesus’ teachings on the vine and the branch in John 15 are that we should remain in Him.
Remaining means we were there in the first place. “You did not choose me, but I chose you [to] go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide” (John 15:16). Just as it is the vine which first produces the union with the branch, so too it is Christ who brings us to Himself as we first become new creations. His command is to then remain in Him. This is what I have been failing to do, and it’s something I’ve now confessed to God.
Whenever our nation’s leaders talk about the State of our Union, they generally express great resolve and optimism, no matter what the state of our country is in.  And despite the state of my union today, I also have great hope. I don’t have this hope because of my own resolve. I have this hope because of the greatness of my God.
God bless me, in spite of my wandering heart, for His glory. And God bless you as well as you strengthen your union with Christ by remaining in Him.

Question: What is the state of your union?