[popup url=”http://blb.org/devotionals/me/view.cfm?Date=07/01&body”]» Today’s reading at Blue Letter Bible[/popup]
Let us meditate upon the faithfulness of God. Because the metaphors employed by Spurgeon weren’t especially relevant to us Orange County folk (what do we know about seasons and winter?), perhaps an outside perspective might help. On the first day of Spring in Chicago this year (where I am a student, you see), I was surprised to find my attitude drastically enlivened with the first kiss of sunlight on my skin. Only in retrospect could I see how intrusively the cold winter months had affected my life and worship. But God does not change with the seasons or the tides; he ever-faithfully beckons us walk by his peaceful streams.
The second entry shows the Creator faithfully waiting in day’s cool hour (again, a metaphor we cannot comprehend), ready to walk in the garden with saints and warriors. He is “always ready to speak with thee,” but with the condition that “thou art prepared to hear.”
If there be any slowness to commune it is not on His part, but altogether on thine own, for He stands at the door and knocks, and if His people will but open He rejoices to enter. But in what state is my heart, which is my Lord’s garden?
Spurgeon calls for self-examination at the garden gates. Are you pleased with the fellowship you share with the Savior? Does your soul earnestly pour out supplications; do you longingly strive after his nearness, which is your good? If you today find yourself standing at the gates and not passing in, perhaps the solution lies in sheer contrast to his: unfaithfulness. Unfaithfulness to the idols you have quietly bowed before outside the garden walls, the “other things” (Mar 4:19) in life you in which you so loyally visit for comfort and quenching. Are you being deceitfully seduced by the pleasures of television, sunsets, music, athletics, employment or even family, but not being romanced to the Living, ever-Faithful God? If you were to be without the thing in question, could you still say with all your heart, “the steadfast love of the Lord is better than life” (Psalm 63:3)?
John Piper writes: “the greatest enemy to hunger for God is not poison but apple pie.” When outside the gates, we labor amongst thorns and thistles for the vanity of “other things,” when we could be eating freely off the fruit of the tree of Life. Let us examine ourselves to see that we have not succumbed to such folly, and let His fullness make us joyfully unfaithful to our other gods.
Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil. Ephesians 5:15-16