Monday, March 23, 2015

Who or What is Your Isaac? Lay It Down

God created us for a relationship with Him. We have an inmate need to be in relationship with another. We want to be loved and to love. We want to be known and to know. We want to be accepted for who we are fully, knowing we are a continually messing up and in need of grace.

Open your Hand. Lay it Down. (lullaby by Veriasse on Deviant Art)

God is the only perfect relationship we will ever have.

So many times we try to fill this need for our relationship with other people, a career or another passion. We allow ourselves to be filled as much as possible with this "other" and think it is part of us that we absolutely can not live without. It is an obsession, an idol, but we think "it" is the very reason we are alive and without "it" we are purposeless, empty, even dead.

God is a jealous God. He says so in Scripture. He tested Abraham in this area. Abraham longed for a son to fulfill God's promise of having descendants that would be the number of the stars in the night sky. But Sarah did not get pregnant. In His quest for an heir, he slept with Sarah's maid and had a son named Ishmael (Mohammed was his descendant who started the new religion of Islam in the 600's).

But God did not forget to fulfill His promise to Abraham. Sarah did get pregnant and she had a son who was named Isaac - meaning laughter. Isaac was the joy of Abraham's heart. Not only did he fulfill God's promise, but he filled Abraham's heart. He was everything to Abraham - his passion, his joy, the reason for living in his old age.

God will not share his place in our life with another - whether that be a person, a thing, or an activity. Understand it is human nature to seek out the passion of our heart and to fill it. God wants to be that passion. He created us to be filled with His love. We are to first seek Him and His ways, and out of being filled we than pursue the desires of our heart that He gives us. He is the one who creates us to be the way we are; He longs for us to be full and happy. He wants us to have an abundant life, but we must place Him as our everything. Out of our relationship with God, our fullness, everything else will flow. We are stable to handle the crisis and traumas and human failures that come into our life.

But God will not share His place in our heart with another. Stop and ask yourself. Who or What is my Isaac? What do I think I cannot live without? Whatever it is - lay it down! Place it in an open hand and allow the Lord to remove it and if he desire to give it back. In my life, I whenever I recognize an "Isaac" I lay it down. Surprisingly God often returns it when I release it, but He does not have to. He alone is more than enough.

Many times people will convince themselves that they cannot live without another person - it might be a child, a mate or a parent/grandparent. God tested Abraham. He asked him to place Isaac on an alter and to offer him up in worship to Him. Abraham obeyed and Isaac was returned to him. Abraham loved God more, than Isaac. He knew somehow God would work everything out if he obeyed Him.

Are you able to be like Abraham? It is dangerous to put something before God. Not only does it mess up the order of your life but you are living in constant disobedience to God. You will never be happy or content, even if you have what you think you cannot live with because every person or thing besides God will never complete you, fulfill you and truly make you happy. You will put too much burden on that person or desire that you think you can't live without and when it fails you, and it will, you will be devastated. Your world will come crashing down and without God as your firm foundation, your solid rock, you will be slipping deep into painful sorrow, regret, hopelessness and remorse. You will crush others and your passions as your hold on tighter to survive.

Put God First (by mihneasim on deviantart)

God is saying, "Let go." "Come to me." "I am all you need."

But the choice is yours. Will you let your Isaac be sacrificed on the altar of life because you held to tightly, because you would not put God first and worship only Him? Will you force your Isaac to be stripped of your hands because you will not let it rest on an open palm?

If you have God, you are never alone. You will never be forsaken, empty, aimless and abandoned. Let Him have all of you. It is the only way you will be able to in turn love others with compassionate, selfless, giving love.

God will fill you, heal your hurts and restore you to be who you were created to be and thereby you will be able to follow you passions and live a life with rich relationships with others.

But your relationship with God, must be your priority, and the only thing in life you cannot live without.

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