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Hello everyone,

 

I noticed that in the past year, many people have subscribed to this blog. I would like to note to those who have not seen my previous post, as well as the new subscribers, that I have moved my blog to a new site: Sekel.

 

I would be happy to see you there!

 

Blessings,

Kyle

Welcome to Sekel!

The move is finished! Revine has now become “Sekel”, and you can continue reading the posts @ http://kcsekel.wordpress.com/

See you there!

Moving blogs

Hi everyone! I just wanted you all to know that I’ll be changing Revine to a new blog at http://kcsekel.wordpress.com/

I have multiple reasons for this change, which I will note in my updated “About my blog” page as soon as possible. The site should be ready in 2-3 days.

As I’m moving, I would appreciate it if you will click “Subscribe” or enter your email again on my new blog. That way, any posts I post after I’m done moving will find its way to you ASAP. You won’t miss a thing!

 

I hope to see you all there soon!

Wholeheartedly

You can consider this article as part II of my previous post, “Secure in the Everlasting Arms

God has already promised eternal security to those who have faith in Him and love Him. However, we must be willing to accept that security and let God have His way. Too often I find myself not going to God for security, and going to other things instead. I’m not regularly laying my life in God’s hands and telling Him “God, You know and do what’s best. Please have Your way in me. My security lies in Your hands and Yours alone.”

Some questions I ask myself include, “where does my security lie?” “Am I willing to lay everything I know on the altar?” “Will I forsake everything I have for the sake of Christ and take up my cross in following Him?” “If I lose everything, will I still say, Lord, I am secure in your arms?”

To have faith of this degree, I would have to have no other security than that in Christ. This is unconditional faith. It’s not something that can be found in every believer, but it should be. After all, we serve an omniscient, omnipotent God. We are told to not lean on our own understanding or strength, but to find our strength and ability in God’s power. We are to have God be our primary focus in life. If we find strength in God’s power, what are we afraid of? If God is our primary focus, and the only foundation on which we stand, why would we want to pursue anything else?

God is my security. That I have concluded. However, now I’m wondering what is keeping me from serving God whole-heartedly. What are the strongholds in my life that are obstacles on the path to Him? Why is it that I have not yet overcome these obstacles and run into God’s hands to give my heart and all to Him?

I believe that it is because of the fact that I still find security in these obstacles. They are a part of me, so to speak, and am allured by the familiar. I still idolize my obstacles and am determined to stay where I am comfortable. I want to have a pure, loving relationship with God, but I’m not willing to release my security in those obstacles. The obstacles are my “competing affections,” things that take hold of my love and keep me from giving it all to God. It is my pride that induces me to audaciously believe that I can do things on my own, that I can do everything I want on my own strength, and that I don’t need to fully surrender my heart to God.

What in insane idea! What could be better than being with God, to know that I am a helpless infant who can find security in the person who made me, the world around me, and the universe! What could be better than serving God with everything that I have, knowing that in joyfully and humbly serving Him, I will know Him more and more intimately.

Am I scared that if I follow God’s commandments, I will lose my reputation? Am I scared that if I will lose those closest to me, and that I will be left with nothing? Am I scared that I don’t have enough faith? Am I scared that if my pride is broken, I will be so shattered that there is nothing of me is left?

My identity is in Christ alone, as a child of the Lord Most High. I should place my loved ones in God’s hands and pray that He will gain them as well. It is not my faith that saved me and protects me, but God’s love and His grace. The Lord despises the proud but blesses the humble.

Tell me again… why have I not wholeheartedly given myself to the Lord?

He is more than enough.

He is everything good and eternal.

He made love.

He is love.

If I have God — if I have Love — what would I lack?

Nothing.

Every human desires security. We want to make sure that we will always be safe, never go bankrupt, and always have family and friends by our side, no matter what happens. We desire security because of the way we have been designed. God ingrained in our minds a sense of helplessness. We need our Creator, because if we don’t have Him in our lives, everything would be in chaos and despair. Sadly, since we are a fallen world, we have tried to find our security in things other than our Maker. The most common example would be that of money. Money can buy you just about everything, and what it can buy, it tremendously influences. It buys you the basic necessitates, food and shelter. It may help you make and keep friends. It can definitely get you happiness in many situations. However, money is such a security for some people that when they lose their money, they may even commit suicide. They believe that all is lost, and that they have no more security and have nothing to live for.

I was at my church’s annual retreat this past weekend. The theme was “Counterfeit gods,” and we learned that idols, counterfeit gods, are anything that distracts us from loving God wholeheartedly. While being convicted by the messages, I found myself wondering whether our idols can usually be where we find fake security. For example, I believe one of my biggest idols is people-pleasing. I find security in knowing I can make friends if I act a certain way or say a certain thing. Sadly, this has never worked. I never experienced any true friendships, much less security, in trying to please people. If anything, I feel more insecure because I don’t know who I am anymore. Yet I keep trying over and over and over. I may find limited, infinitesimal security for a brief moment, but overall, my security is still false and nonexistent.

I also thought about the times in my life where I encountered terrifying situations. What is the first thing I cling to for security, or what stronghold do I run into to hide? Is it movies and music, which warp reality and plants me in a world that distracts me from what is happening in real life? Is it my bed, pillow, blanket and sleep? Is it hanging out with friends or talking to our mentors, believing that talking through our problems or other subjects will make us feel more secure?

What makes it so difficult to have faith that God can do more than any of our idols and give us the true security we crave? What disables us from reaching for the Word of God when we fall into despair?

I believe that it is because we have not depended on the word of God as much as we should, myself especially. I have not read it enough. Since the Bible is the Word of God, it comes from the mind of God and tells about God. If I read the Bible regularly, I should become familiarized with God’s heart and His power. I should know that God dearly loves His children and desires nothing more than for them to run in helplessness to Him and find security in His everlasting arms. I should know that God has the power to ensure this security. He made security itself! He made everything in the world… He can protect us from it all. Also, He can defend us against any evil that tries to overtake us.

“If God is for us, who is against us? He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things? Who will bring a charge against God’s elect? God is the one who justifies; who is the one who condemns? Christ Jesus is He who died, yes, rather who was raised, who is at the right hand of God, who also intercedes for us. Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? Just as it is written,

“ For Your sake we are being put to death all day long;
We were considered as sheep to be slaughtered.”

But in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

- Romans 8:31b-39 (NASB)

Reading through this promise, and the list of things that can never separate us from the love of Christ, I am convinced of God’s sovereign power to secure us today and for eternity.

“And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.”

- Romans 8:28 (NASB)

As God’s children, who have been taken into His arms, we have eternal security. Anything that happens in the world is part of God’s plan. All we need to do is love Him and have faith in Him.

Such a simple truth, yet to hard to believe. I am ashamed of my weak faith. Why do I fear man so much that God’s power is diminished in my mind? Why do I have “Plan A’s, B’s, C’s,” etc. that do not stand on faith and hope in the Lord? Why do I despair when my life on earth is infinitesimal compared to eternity with God?

God has the power. He has the love. But He needs our willingness to put what little faith we have in Him. He alone holds the only security that matters… Eternal security in His everlasting arms.

For further reflection, read and meditate on Psalm 91. Pray it to the Lord and rest in His promises!

This past week, I finished my junior year of high school and witnessed the senior class’ graduation. As the activities and days flew by, I found myself pondering my future plans. Among the common questions such as what to write in personal statements, what colleges to apply to, et cetera, I also found myself asking questions about my spiritual growth and faith.

One question, with several components, weighed heavily on my heart and in my mind: is my future completely consecrated to the Lord? Are my plans aligned with His, in that I am willing to follow His guidance even if it goes completely against what society says I should do? Am I depending on Him with faith that He will preserve me in my college years, and that I would be adequately prepared during my last two summers and my senior year of high school to not only retain, but also to share my faith when I enter college?

These questions are difficult to answer, if answers even exist. I find myself desperate to find ways to connect with God, to depend on Him. But what does it mean to “let go and let God?” How much of my work should I do by myself, and leave the rest in faith? As I struggle with these questions, my only assurance comes from the faith that if I continue seeking God in prayer and meditating on His Word, He will guide me in the right direction.

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.

Romans 12:2

Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make straight your paths.

Proverbs 3:5-6

As an almost-high-school-senior, the “will of God” is something I hold to be very, very important. If I stray from what He wants me to do, I could become lost and confused. Therefore, this coming year, I want to make every effort to be conformed to God’s standards and transformed by renewing my mind with His Word. I want to come faithfully to Him in prayer and meditation on His Word every day, that through this regular time with God I would be able to discern what He wants me to do in every situation.

If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory.”

Colossians 3:1-4

And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to His purpose.

Romans 8:28

As I continue this journey of life, I am also reminded to set my heart and mind on God’s plan for mankind. Getting a good education, and the plans and events that follow, is merely a method of preparing myself to be as useful to the Lord as possible. It is not to be my primary focus in life, but it is to be an aid. No matter what happens in my life, what joys and disasters, everything is done for the glory of God, that His will may be done on earth through His people.

With this mindset and assurance of the necessity of unconditional faith and God’s vision, I can take on the road ahead with confidence. However, it is not without prayer and the work of others that I can even begin this journey. I pray that my fellow brothers and sisters can encourage me in the years to come, and that I can return the blessing.

A passage in Romans 8 gives me an important closing reminder of the power of Him who is in me:

Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? As it is written, “For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.” No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Romans 8:35-38

Finally, let me not forget what the Lord has promised about my future, if only I fully consecrate myself and my future to Him:

For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will hear you. You will seek Me and find Me, when you seek Me with all your heart.

Jeremiah 29:11-13

Desiring the Word

One question that weighed heavily on my heart tonight was why so many Christians emphasize digging into God’s Word. Why should we crave the Word? What does it even mean to crave it? Why should we read the Bible every day and hide it in our hearts? As I pondered the questions, God brought to my mind several thoughts.

We desire the Word of God because it draws us closer to His heart.

When we hear the Word of God, it inspires and rejuvenates us, sparking life within us and opening our eyes, heart, and mind to receive a refreshing drink of God’s Spirit.

When we read the Word of God, we become allured by God’s thoughts: what He desires, His joys, and what saddens Him.

When we memorize the Word of God, it becomes ingrained in the constitution of our mind and being; imprinted upon our spirit. It transforms our mind to be synoptical with that of the Lord’s; it convicts us of evil, inspires us to love, and equips us with the courageous faith God grants those who relentlessly seek after Him.

The irresistible longing for God that drives us from the inside out to seek His face and know His thoughts comes from His grace.

So take freely of it, receive it, process it, and dispense it.

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