This article is from Guest Blogger Rev. Bill Westlund. Bill is president of Victorious Ministry Through Christ. I’ve been doing some work on their website and thought that the Lambchow audience would be encouraged and challenged by Bill’s most recent posting. VMTC’s website can be found at VMTC.ORG
Katie and I were doing our morning devotions after breakfast and this verse was the focus of Oswald Chambers, “Never will I leave you, never will I forsake you”. (Heb. 13.5) I was overwhelmed by the affirmation of God that no matter what He will not leave me nor forsake me! His word is sacred and irrevocable. I can rest in that word. I can have utter and complete confidence in His word. The word is not based on anything I do or do not do. It is based on His unchanging and unchangeable character. What freedom and security I have in knowing His faithfulness. I understand that this word does not mean that bad things cannot happen, nor will life always be like sailing on a sea of glass pushed on by a gentle breeze. It means, “Never will I leave you, never will I forsake you”! It means that no matter how I screw things up, no matter how unlike Him I am, no matter how much I whine, cry, and complain – He will not leave me! Yes, my behavior, my choices always have consequences, and those consequences, from my point of view, may be just or not so just. The truth is that my unfaithfulness does not cause Him to be unfaithful. Even when Israel was rebellious and their sins brought about their dispersion He did not forsake or leave them. So it is with me (us), He desires our obedience and so we should be, but even if we are not His word is unchangeable and unshakable.
Another thing I have come to realize is “I do not want to leave Him!” I do not want to believe and act in any way that brings separation between the two of us. Where else could I go to receive the love, the acceptance, the power, the courage, the patience, the confidence to “trust in the Lord with all my heart and lean not on my own understanding”? Yes, I am responsible to quickly respond to the Holy Spirit’s conviction when I “miss the mark” and confess, repent and receive and give forgiveness. I know I am not “holy”, nor can I make myself “holy”. He is Holy and He can declare and make me “holy”. My responsibility is to let Him and I am making progress. If this has been speaking to you, I trust you are making progress as well. “Thanks be to God who gives us the victory in our Lord Jesus Christ!” (I Cor. 15:57)