In HOPE

  In HOPE 8.35 

back to home

David Timms  

 


Prayer for Today

Father, forgive me for pushing You to the edge of my life. I long to walk with You, to know Christ, and to be in step with Your Spirit, yet my heart wanders, my attention strays, and my will seems weak. I acknowledge my failure of discipline and intentionality to pursue You. I admit my tendency to seek distraction rather than intimacy. Change my heart, O Lord, that I may grow closer to You. Deliver me from my spiritual apathy and guide me to a more deliberate Journey with You today. Amen. 

Hope Happenings

On Friday, October 31st, Hope International University will hold its annual Halloween alternative, "Happy House." This year's theme is pirates. It's a fun-filled night of carnival games, pony rides, a petting zoo, jump houses, haunted halls, a pirate skit, and of course the traditional trick-or-treating with lots of CANDY! The event (6:00-9:00pm) is always free and open to the Fullerton community.

Hope International University
Fullerton  CA  92831

 

"Noah was a righteous man, blameless in his own time;
Noah walked with God."
(Genesis 6:9) 


Accidental Intimacy

Nobody falls in love. Infatuation, occasionally. Lust, all too often. But not love -- not the kind of love that Jesus speaks of in the gospels -- not the kind of love that Paul writes about in his epistles.

The love of Christ is demanding and deliberate. We don't accidentally love our enemies or forgive those who hurt us. Such love requires a great deal of intentionality from us.

This partly explains the failure of so many marriages in our day. They begin with enthusiasm, romance, hope, and excitement. But, over time, they fail to practice intentional love. And the apathy leads to increasing (sometimes unbridgeable) distance.

Authentic love acts sacrificially and selflessly, and emerges from constant decisions and calculations. Nobody "falls" into it.

What is true of our friendships and marriages is equally true of our walk with God.

When Scripture says that Noah "walked with God," we can assume that this happened deliberately on his part. In a world filled with corruption and violence, as Noah's world was, to walk with God surely required disciplined steps. It's unimaginable that Noah lived like his peers but had a free pass to God's Presence.

In our own world of distraction and deception, walking with God requires similar focus.

Few of us will find ourselves accidentally close to God. We do not irresistibly "fall" in love with Him and stay there. His grace may sweep us off our feet initially, but only the discipline and intentionality of love can keep us "off balance."

 

William Law, writing in 1728, suggested that all of the disorders of our lives result from our lack of serious intention to please God. We hope that our casual acknowledgement of His reality will produce transformational circumstances in our lives, but all the while we are far more serious about pursuing our careers than pursuing Christ.

 

How deliberate have you been recently about your walk with Christ? Do you expect divine intimacy to develop accidentally? Our failure to step decisively towards Him results inevitably in a distance from Him.

Let's decide to embrace Him more fully this week and, armed with a strategic plan, press a little harder after Him. That's what love does, in our marriages, friendships, and faith.

In HOPE --

David

 

Want to chat more on a topic? Hit "Reply" and share your thoughts.
I'm always happy to explore these issues further.

To subscribe:  Email djtimms@hiu.edu and write "Subscribe to In HOPE" in the subject line. This is a free service; no advertisements; no sharing of the e-list. Unsubscribe in the same way.

You can find back issues of "In HOPE" (2005-2008) at http://www.hiu.edu/inhope/.

David Timms serves in the Graduate Ministry Department at Hope International University in Fullerton, California. "In HOPE", however, is not an official publication of the University and the views expressed are not necessarily those of the Administrators or Board. "In HOPE" has been a regular e-publication since January, 2001.