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Not Our Tempter, But Our Deliverer

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Not Our Tempter; Our Deliverer

Intro - Banter/guests/growth/
Intro - normal with focus on guests
Today is the final sermon on the Lord’s prayer
not preaching about doxology portion
mention addendum not in prayer
…would like to point out that it first appeared in the Didache…so there is tradition behind it, but not going into it in this series.
This last section[say it]...really has 2 parts, or two main ideas, and we need to look at them separately before we can understand them together
briefly mention theodicy?
Just like everything else in the Bible, and in life, we must view it back through the lens of Jesus if we really want clarity...
and to do that, I felt like it would be best to help clarify what Jesus’ experiences with the ideas presented in this text were, so that we would better understand what He is telling us to pray.
…so let’s turn to , and take a look at what Jesus had Himself experienced, and what no doubt colored His intent behind the words we pray here.
…so let’s turn to , and take a look at what Jesus had Himself experienced, and what no doubt colored His intent behind the words we pray here.
James 1:13 ESV
Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God,” for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one.
[slide]
James
- text points us to the truth, God doesn’t tempt, He doesn’t command evil to happen. Life Happens, and God is there to help us as we navigate through it.
In circumstance, in prayer, and in the word - God is there for us.
Seque to text
Matthew 4:1–11 ESV
Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. And after fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. And the tempter came and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, command these stones to become loaves of bread.” But he answered, “It is written, “ ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’ ” Then the devil took him to the holy city and set him on the pinnacle of the temple and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down, for it is written, “ ‘He will command his angels concerning you,’ and “ ‘On their hands they will bear you up, lest you strike your foot against a stone.’ ” Jesus said to him, “Again it is written, ‘You shall not put the Lord your God to the test.’ ” Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. And he said to him, “All these I will give you, if you will fall down and worship me.” Then Jesus said to him, “Be gone, Satan! For it is written, “ ‘You shall worship the Lord your God and him only shall you serve.’ ” Then the devil left him, and behold, angels came and were ministering to him.
:1-7
----
pray
[jesusbeing tempted]
Both this section of the Lord’s prayer, and this text today beg the question,“what is temptation?”
I say that, because, that question lies at the heart of understanding both this story from Matthew, and the section of the prayer we are looking at today.
point out how the other words and ideas don’t pull us in generally. But we get caught up in this idea of temptation…it carries the most weight...
…and so we have to ask ourselves what is this temptation that we are asking to not be led into!
These are questions that theologians, and countless others have been asking for thousands of years.
to answer that, we need to look at the word used, and to understand the background of that word, especially what Jesus’ experience brings to the table when He uses that word.
πειρασμός = an experiment, attempt, trial, proving
So I ask again, what is temptation? What does it mean to you?
when I think about temptation my mind goes immediately to bad food and diets.
…so in that context, a temptation is something I want, but I know I shouldn’t do.
Paul puts that idea this way, “I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.”
I think that when we all think about temptation, that is what we think. And while that might be right, it is still better to look at the word and figure out what Jesus was actually saying so that we can start in the right place…[reframe from what my experience tells me to what Jesus’ experience tells me]*****
So this word on the screen…[talk about it briefly]…used 2 times in times total...it’s a noun (like an idea)
It means [swipe screen], "an experiment, attempt, trial, proving.” And that should immediately clue us in that this word doesn’t mean what you think it means!
Galatians 4:14 ESV
and though my condition was a trial to you, you did not scorn or despise me, but received me as an angel of God, as Christ Jesus.
Gal 4: So whether we experiment and find good (peirasmos) or experience something bad and learn (peirasmos).  Even when we assume an outcome (peirasmos) or suffer hardship (peirasmos), the word will always be peirasmos! 
 Paul actually uses the word in a way that best explains it.
In Galatians we find Paul talking about when he had first came to them to preach. And there he reminds them that, “though my condition...”
So there we see peirasmos, or trial in this case, as something that happened that could have given them cause to react in a couple different ways.
So whether we experiment and find good (peirasmos) or experience something bad and learn (peirasmos).  Even when we assume an outcome (peirasmos) or suffer hardship (peirasmos), the word will always be peirasmos! 
that is a better explanation of what God intends for us to understand than our own...
So whether we experiment and find good (peirasmos) or experience something bad and learn (peirasmos).  Even when we assume an outcome (peirasmos) or suffer hardship (peirasmos), the word will always be peirasmos! 
I can best be defined by two little words
- In other words, "life happens!" 
Life happens!
And while those events might teach us something, and they might tug our hearts toward some end, they aren’t necessarily a test! Sometimes stuff just happens.
Now, a quick time out here; that doesn’t mean that you don’t learn from it, or that God can’t or won’t use it for His glory. He will and He does.
But as far as this words meaning, and what Jesus is getting at, peirasmos - tempation - is the sum total of our experience, and more specifically, those experiences that might not be the best things for us to do, or to allow to happen in our own lives.  
…and that is the stuff that this word is used to describe. So what Jesus is getting at, is the sum total of our experience, and more specifically, those experiences that might not be the best things for us to allow to happen in our lives.  
So the sum total of our experience is what Jesus is getting at, and more specifically, those experiences that might not be the best for us.  
[Those aren't caused by God, just as an adulterous spouses infidelity isn't caused by their spouse.  They just happen! ] 
SO REALLY THIS LINE IN THE PRAYER COULD JUST AS EASILY SAY HELP THAT STUFF TO NOT HAPPEN, OR AT THE VERY LEAST, GIVE US WHAT WE NEED TO NOT HAVE TO GO DOWN THAT PATH!
[jesustempted]
[THIS WHOLE SECTION IS JUST AN EXEGETE/EXPLANATION OF TEMPTATION FROM JESUS’ POINT OF VIEW IN THE STORY…PRACTICAL STUFF FOR US TOO (GETTING CLOSER TO JESUS)]
And I say that, because in our text today we see Jesus undergoing this very thing…
In our text today we see Jesus undergoing this very thing...
[exegete/explain....stay close to the first temptation only]
this is kind of like someone you don’t like at all, and have absolutely no respect for telling you that the cool kids do this, so you should too…well that wouldn’t even be a temptation would it?
we would ignore it!
but you need to understand that Jesus’ situation gave the tempter a foothold...
But just like in our own lives, when Jesus was getting closer to God, by fasting, the temptation to stray becomes very real, and very present in our lives.
examples
And just like us, Jesus’ circumstances create the temptation that the devil is bringing to light here. You see, he isn’t accusing Jesus really, or putting Him on trial. He didn’t really even tempt Jesus with anything tangible.
He was tempting Jesus with thought and with circumstance.
"IF you are the Son of God..."  do this.  He tried to introduce doubt and disbelief. 
…talk about how that applies to us. [examples]
"IF you are the Son of God..."  do this.  He tried to introduce doubt and disbelief.  Satan here really isn’t tempting Jesus as much as he is allowing the circumstances in which Jesus finds Himself to exert force on Him. In other words, Jesus’ situation is what is doing the tempting, Satan is simply highlighting that situation!
hungry…at the end of His fast…He would be breaking that fast anyway! But Jesus, when tempted, or encouraged is perhaps a better word, to change the nature of God’s creation to address His own desires, He uses God’s own word to help Him overcome the easy path!
Examples in our lives
…that is a strong reminder to us church…sometimes we see that easy path, that wide gate, and we want to go that way, but we are called to that narrow one. The difficult one. The one where we lose us to gain Him.
Now I say all that to get to this point - That is what temptation looks like in light of Jesus’ experience. That is what Jesus went through, and church, that is the temptation this prayer is talking about!
[lead us not...]
So when Jesus tells us this prayer, He is pulling from that experience...
Don’t let us be lead by our life, by our selfish nature, by our short-sightedness, by ourselves or by anyone or anything else, into peirasmos - into those things that would cause us to want something other than God alone.
[jesus quoting scripture]…reminds us that we are to want God’s word, God’s will, and to worship God above all other things that we encounter.
That is what we are praying here.
Listen if you want to overcome temptation, you simply have to overcome your own ability to drown out the Holy Spirit by listening to voices that aren’t God’s!
Church, let me be clear about this, the temptation that Jesus experienced and that we experience every day isn’t coming from God!
James 1:13–14 ESV
Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God,” for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one. But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire.
James 1:
[read]
...God doesn't tempt us.  And sometimes, even the devil doesn't tempt us.  Sometimes, life, our selfish nature, and our short-sightedness do enough damage.  No matter who does the peirasmos, God is the only thing that can lead us from that toward what He really wants for us.
[read]
Our lives, our circumstances, our faults, our sin, our desires, those things can tempt us, but God does not! What we do, we do because of us, not because God has it out for us, or wants to test us and our faith.
No God commends us for our faith, as Hebrews tells us. Faith as small as a mustard seed, it can move mountains!
You are right, God doesn't tempt us.  And sometimes, even the devil doesn't tempt us.  Sometimes, life, our selfish nature, and our short-sightedness do enough damage.  No matter who does the peirasmos, God is the only thing that can lead us from that toward what He really wants for us.
No, God isn’t our tempter, God is our deliverer!
[pichereofwalkinginthedarkbehindalight]
walking in the dark metaphor
Closing out series - not doing doxology
Jesus was led by the spirit like we are led through a haunted house, or being blindfolded, or walking in the woods in the dark…when you are in the wilderness any little thing can trip you up…but with a light, and especially with a guide, you won’t fall…essentially, the spirit leads us through the wilderness of this life, and as long as we hold on to it, we won’t fall prey to temptation!
Mention it’s roots
Difficulty writing message. Torn. Felt like I was a failure...
As if I was being tempted to be the old, hyper-critical me that I was when I was a musician.
God isn’t our tempter, he is our deliverer!
That temptation got in the way of me doing what I wanted and needed to do. But understand, that I was making a choice to go down that path.
Psalm 18:1–2 ESV
I love you, O Lord, my strength. The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.
psalm 18
The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.
It wasn’t until I stopped going down that path, and started to trust God again that I began to feel peace.
The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.
…oh, but how ofter we tend to make God a scapegoat for our troubles. We ask “why me God?” We start to dwell in the despair of our situations and temptations, and begin to assume that God isn’t there because we have failed some divine test. But the reality, y’all, is that He is the very thing protecting us from all the troubles that would have otherwise devoured us!
[pichereofwalkinginthedarkbehindalight]
[jesusshield]
walking in the dark metaphor
[our deliverer]
WHEN WE PRAY FOR GOD TO DELIVER US FROM EVIL, WE ARE PRAYING TO THE GOD WHO DELIVERED THE CHOSEN PEOPLE FROM SLAVERY, FROM THE WILDERNESS, FROM THE HANDS OF THOSE WHO WOULD SEEK TO DESTROY THEM AND DESTROY GOD! THE GOD WHO DELIVERED US THE MESSIAH - HIS SON - AND DELIVERED HIM TO THE CROSS FOR US TO BE DELIVERED FROM DEATH! THE ONE WHO DELIVERED US HOPE, AND PEACE, AND SALVATION! THE ONE WHO BROUGHT THIS WORLD A CHANCE! A LIGHT IN THE DARKNESS THAT CAN SURROUND US! A GUIDE FOR ALL THE TROUBLES THAT WE WILL NO DOUBT ENCOUNTER AS WE WALK THROUGH THE “WILDERNESS OF THE REAL.” HE HAS DELIVERED IT TIME AND TIME AGAIN! AND HE WILL CONTINUE TO DELIVER US - EVEN TO ETERNITY!
The GOD WHO DELIVERED THE CHOSEN PEOPLE FROM SLAVERY, FROM THE WILDERNESS, FROM THE HANDS OF THOSE WHO WOULD SEEK TO DESTROY THEM AND DESTROY GOD! THE GOD WHO DELIVERED US THE MESSIAH - HIS SON - AND DELIVERED HIM TO THE CROSS FOR US TO BE DELIVERED FROM DEATH! THE ONE WHO DELIVERED US HOPE, AND PEACE, AND SALVATION! THE ONE WHO BROUGHT THIS WORLD A CHANCE! A LIGHT IN THE DARKNESS THAT CAN SURROUND US! A GUIDE FOR ALL THE TROUBLES THAT WE WILL NO DOUBT ENCOUNTER AS WE WALK THROUGH THE “WILDERNESS OF THE REAL.” HE HAS DELIVERED IT TIME AND TIME AGAIN! AND HE WILL CONTINUE TO DELIVER US - EVEN TO ETERNITY!
That was about 2 1/2 hours ago, by the way...
NO MATTER THE TEMPTATION. NO MATTER OUR SHORTCOMINGS. NO MATTER WHAT! HE WILL DELIVER US FROM THE EVILS OF THIS LIFE, AND IN FACT ALREADY HAS! JESUS SAW THAT THROUGH FOR EACH OF US.
So before we get going, in commemoration of this last Sunday focusing on this wonderful prayer, let’s lift our hearts to the Lord together in praying just as He has taught us to pray.
AND CHURCH, WE NEED TO REALIZE THAT THIS END TO THE PRAYER IS BASICALLY REMINDING US THAT WE HAVE ALREADY BEEN DELIVERED! JESUS DELIVERED US ALL WHEN HE DELIVERED THAT CROSS! WHEN THAT STONE ROLLED AWAY, WE KNEW WHERE WE WERE GOING! AND CHURCH, NO MATTER WHAT WE MIGHT BE TRIPPING OVER IN THIS LIFE - NO MATTER HOW MANY TIMES WE MIGHT FALL, NO MATTER HOW MANY POTHOLES WE FIND OURSELVES CLIMBING OUT OF, WE KNOW THAT WE FOLLOW THE LEAD OF THE SAVIOR! IT IS HIS LIGHT THAT SHOWS US ALL THOSE THINGS THAT CAUSE US TO STUMBLE, AND BECAUSE OF THAT LIGHT - THAT SPIRIT - WE CAN BE ASSURED THAT WE ARE ON THE RIGHT PATH! WE ARE BEING DELIVERED!
AND EVEN THOUGH THAT PATH ISN’T ALWAYS EASY, I HAVE NO DOUBT THAT IF WE COULD JUST STAY BEHIND HIM, AND FOLLOW HIS LIGHT, EVEN THOUGH WE MIGHT STUMBLE A BIT STILL, WE WILL NEVER FALL!
He will deliver us, if we just keep our eyes on Him.
And church, that path isn’t always easy. But God’s light will still shine throughout all the tough terrain. And as long as we follow God’s lead, we will be delivered from all evil.
[peterwalkingonwater]
close with that story…AS SOON AS PETER TOOK HIS EYES OFF OF JESUS HE NOTICED THE WIND AND THE RAIN AND THE WAVES...
…pray the Lord’s prayer in my words…After is a time of response [seated]....
Father. We love you. We thank you for loving us beyond measure, and stand amazed at how much you have given just to know us. No matter what our heads are telling us to want, God, our hearts remind us that we want what you want. Help us to become a part of that plan. Help us to see that you have provided all we need to do that, and to live our lives for you. And more than that, help us to be content, and even excited about what we have been given. Forgive us for forgetting to forgive others, and for those moments when we forget to love them and you more than anything. And God, don't let us ever think that you aren't there and that you don't love us.  Guide us to the truth we need to avoid as many of those moments as possible, so that we will stay in step with you all the days of our life.
In your own tradition
[pic of lens]
Like everything in the Bible, and in life, to best understand it, we need to look at it through the lens of Jesus, and the lens of scripture.
Even scripture itself!
And today, for us, if we want to best understand what temptation is, and just how it is that we are led away from it, we need to look at what Jesus Himself had experienced so that we can get a good idea of what He means here.
…turn to ...
Matthew 4:1–11 ESV
Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. And after fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. And the tempter came and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, command these stones to become loaves of bread.” But he answered, “It is written, “ ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’ ” Then the devil took him to the holy city and set him on the pinnacle of the temple and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down, for it is written, “ ‘He will command his angels concerning you,’ and “ ‘On their hands they will bear you up, lest you strike your foot against a stone.’ ” Jesus said to him, “Again it is written, ‘You shall not put the Lord your God to the test.’ ” Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. And he said to him, “All these I will give you, if you will fall down and worship me.” Then Jesus said to him, “Be gone, Satan! For it is written, “ ‘You shall worship the Lord your God and him only shall you serve.’ ” Then the devil left him, and behold, angels came and were ministering to him.
----
pray
[picofbadfoods]
Have you ever been tempted to do something you shouldn’t? Maybe that isn’t the right question. Do you remember those times, or the last time even, that you were confronted with a situation that gave you a chance to make a choice? Maybe one a choice to follow your convicitons and one a choice to give in?
Temptation, to me, is that very feeling. That feeling of want to and need to colliding in our hearts.
And really, this picture sums up all temptation to me…[expand]
…I think that most of us, in fact, think of temptation in those terms…what we should do, versus what we want to do.
Or as Paul puts it, “I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.”
But is that what this prayer is getting at?
I think that sums up, for me, the difficulty we can have with this idea of temptation. Because if we are honest, there is the temptation to cheat on a diet, or something similar - things that have no real affect on our spirutal lives, and then there are the big things, right? The things that we sometimes view as tests from God, or some other cosmic challenge to see if we are worthy to be Christians.
It is almost as if there is nothing in between.
πειρασμός = an experiment, attempt, trial, proving
But is that what Jesus is getting at here in this prayer?
So let me ask again, now that I am fully leading the question. What is temptation to you? How do you define it?
Now hold on to that. Hold on to it, because I want us to weigh that - to reframe it if you will - this is a moment when we can begin the process of changing our minds and our viewpoint from what our own experience tells us, to what Jesus’ experiences should teach us.
So with that in mind, let’s talk about this word on the screen…used 20 times…2 in Matt…noun (like an idea)
It means [swipe screen], "an experiment, attempt, trial, proving.”
Now this is why I asked you to hold onto your idea of temptation, because it should be right about know that you realize that this word doesn’t mean what you think it means! At the least, Jesus’ application of that word is different from ours.
Galatians 4:14 ESV
and though my condition was a trial to you, you did not scorn or despise me, but received me as an angel of God, as Christ Jesus.
I think the easiest way to understand this idea comes again from Paul…[setup and read]
in this moment we see the same word, “peirasmos” only now it means trial. But bigger than that, what it really means is a moment in time when we get to choose one of several paths. God’s path, or the others.
[cartoonpath]
And honestly, this is a far better picture of what is meant by this word! You see our experience, every moment we live out in this life, they are filled with opportunities to make a choice. To choose between what we want to do, where we want to go, how we want to live, or to choose what God has for us.
We are surrounded with these opportunities! Chances to choose the path that God has for us instead of wandering down these other paths that lead nowhere!
After all, that is just what is going on with Jesus in this moment...
[jesustempted]
Exegete briefly -
things to dwell on:
Jesus would have been ending His fast anyway
Jesus would never have been tempted by devil, could only be tempted by circumstance (just like in the garden)
Jesus would have been ending His fast anyway
Jesus’ answer to these other paths, wasn’t to rely on His strength or ability. He chose to rely on the (recite verses)…God’s word, God’s will, God worship. That is what guided Jesus here.
And that is exactly what Jesus is telling us when He reminds us in this prayer that we need to pray to not be led into temptation.
But understand, as the old song says, “the closer you get, the further I fall..”
how we get close to God and things start pulling us away...
THAT IS WHY THIS PRAYER AND UNDERSTANDING TEMPTATION IS SO IMPORTANT! THIS IS A MOMENT WHEN YOU CAN LOOK AT YOUR SITUATION AND REMIND YOURSELF THAT IT DOESN’T HAVE TO BE THIS WAY! IF YOU WANT TO OVERCOME TEMPTATION, YOU JUST NEED TO RELY ON GOD’S WORD, GOD’S WILL, AND GOD WORSHIP!
And when you do that, you can overcome those voices that would pull you away from God’s path.
And if you have been tuning me out listen up now, because church, God isn’t our tempter, God is our delieverer!
James 1:13–14 ESV
Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God,” for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one. But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire.
[read]
Our lives, our circumstances, our faults, our sin, our desires, those things can tempt us, but God does not! What we do, we do because of us, not because God has it out for us, or wants to test us and our faith.
No God commends us for our faith, as Hebrews tells us. Faith as small as a mustard seed, it can move mountains!
When our spirits are weak, and our souls faint within us, God alone knows the way! He knows the traps that lie in our paths, and if we aren’t listening to Him, we will fall into them!
Psalm 18:1–2 ESV
I love you, O Lord, my strength. The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.
[don’t read]
The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.
…oh, but how ofter we tend to make God a scapegoat for our troubles. We ask “why me God?” We start to dwell in the despair of our situations and temptations, and begin to assume that God isn’t there because we have failed some divine test. But the reality, y’all, is that He is the very thing protecting us from all the troubles that would have otherwise devoured us!
[jesusshield]
walking in the dark in the woods
[ourdeliverer]
WHEN WE PRAY FOR GOD TO DELIVER US FROM EVIL, WE ARE PRAYING TO THE GOD WHO DELIVERED THE CHOSEN PEOPLE FROM SLAVERY, FROM THE WILDERNESS, FROM THE HANDS OF THOSE WHO WOULD SEEK TO DESTROY THEM AND DESTROY GOD! THE GOD WHO DELIVERED US THE MESSIAH - HIS SON - AND DELIVERED HIM TO THE CROSS FOR US TO BE DELIVERED FROM DEATH! THE ONE WHO DELIVERED US HOPE, AND PEACE, AND SALVATION! THE ONE WHO BROUGHT THIS WORLD A CHANCE! A LIGHT IN THE DARKNESS THAT CAN SURROUND US! A GUIDE FOR ALL THE TROUBLES THAT WE WILL NO DOUBT ENCOUNTER AS WE WALK THROUGH THE “WILDERNESS OF THE REAL.” HE HAS DELIVERED IT TIME AND TIME AGAIN! AND HE WILL CONTINUE TO DELIVER US - EVEN TO ETERNITY!
NO MATTER THE TEMPTATION. NO MATTER OUR SHORTCOMINGS. NO MATTER WHAT! HE WILL DELIVER US FROM THE EVILS OF THIS LIFE, AND IN FACT ALREADY HAS! JESUS SAW THAT THROUGH FOR EACH OF US.
AND CHURCH, WE NEED TO REALIZE THAT THIS END TO THE PRAYER IS BASICALLY REMINDING US THAT WE HAVE ALREADY BEEN DELIVERED! JESUS DELIVERED US ALL WHEN HE DELIVERED THAT CROSS! WHEN THAT STONE ROLLED AWAY, WE KNEW WHERE WE WERE GOING! AND CHURCH, NO MATTER WHAT WE MIGHT BE TRIPPING OVER IN THIS LIFE - NO MATTER HOW MANY TIMES WE MIGHT FALL, NO MATTER HOW MANY POTHOLES WE FIND OURSELVES CLIMBING OUT OF, WE KNOW THAT WE FOLLOW THE LEAD OF THE SAVIOR! IT IS HIS LIGHT THAT SHOWS US ALL THOSE THINGS THAT CAUSE US TO STUMBLE, AND BECAUSE OF THAT LIGHT - THAT SPIRIT - WE CAN BE ASSURED THAT WE ARE ON THE RIGHT PATH! WE ARE BEING DELIVERED!
AND EVEN THOUGH THAT PATH ISN’T ALWAYS EASY, I HAVE NO DOUBT THAT IF WE COULD JUST STAY BEHIND HIM, AND FOLLOW HIS LIGHT, EVEN THOUGH WE MIGHT STUMBLE A BIT STILL, WE WILL NEVER FALL!
He will deliver us, if we just keep our eyes on Him. If we will just choose to follow His path, and drown out those voices that would silence the Holy Spirit in our hearts.
[picofpeterwalkingonwater]
Story of peter walking on water...AS SOON AS PETER TOOK HIS EYES OFF OF JESUS HE NOTICED THE WIND AND THE RAIN AND THE WAVES...
…pray the Lord’s prayer in my words…After is a time of response [seated]....
Father. We love you. We thank you for loving us beyond measure, and stand amazed at how much you have given just to know us. No matter what our heads are telling us to want, God, our hearts remind us that we want what you want. Help us to become a part of that plan. Help us to see that you have provided all we need to do that, and to live our lives for you. And more than that, help us to be content, and even excited about what we have been given. Forgive us for forgetting to forgive others, and for those moments when we forget to love them and you more than anything. And God, don't let us ever think that you aren't there and that you don't love us. Guide us to the truth we need to avoid as many of those moments as possible, so that we will stay in step with you all the days of our life.
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