I was reminded today that when we make a commitment to The Lord, although we may stray from it, He never does. We believe that Jesus is Savior, and He is our Savior. We confess our sinfulness, we make Him Lord, and we believe He is Christ. But how often do we sin, even in a single day? There are those people who said they wanted Jesus to be their Lord, but never made Him their Lord. They gave Him half their hearts, out of fear of what it could mean to make someone the Master of their lives. While some may not carry through and let the seed grow and develop fruit, God our Vinedresser will prune, feed, and water until fruit grows. Verses 1-3 read,
“Lord, you were favorable to your land;
you restored the fortunes of Jacob.
2 You forgave the iniquity of your people;
you covered all their sin. Selah
3 You withdrew all your wrath;
you turned from your hot anger.”
Look what Jesus has done for us! It is a beautiful miraculous thing to wipe our sin away and spare of from the wrath He rightfully could direct at us. He doesn’t leave us like He found us though. When we are willing, when we submit, He changes us. He conforms us to His image. He already gave us His righteousness, but now He works to make us more like Him.
But some people even though they made a commitment, still have not submitted to Jesus as Lord. They live life and look like the world, act like the world, and think the world. We can’t tell them apart from the world. But God doesn’t give up on them. He keeps calling, He keeps bringing them to circumstances where they can call on Him for deliverance. And we hope and pray they do recognize their need of God instead of continually looking to themselves or some false god for rescue. We pray they call on Jesus’ name. Verses 4-7 read,
“Restore us again, O God of our salvation,
and put away your indignation toward us!
5 Will you be angry with us forever?
Will you prolong your anger to all generations?
6 Will you not revive us again,
that your people may rejoice in you?
7 Show us your steadfast love, O Lord,
and grant us your salvation.”
We know there is more to following Jesus than merely asking for salvation. We know there is more to making Jesus Lord than calling Him Lord. We have to bow to Him. In order to surrender, we have to obey and in order to obey, we have to listen. We know that what He has to say is wonderful but those who won’t acquiesce to The Lord don’t know that. But we can tell them. Verses 8-9 say,
“Let me hear what God the Lord will speak,
for he will speak peace to his people, to his saints;
but let them not turn back to folly.
9 Surely his salvation is near to those who fear him,
that glory may dwell in our land.”
Submission to The Lord doesn’t mean a difficult slavish life. On the contrary it is a wonderful life of peace and freedom, enjoying God’s steadfast love, not the dictatorship of a heavy handed tyrant. Our awesome loving Lord wants the best for us. Although He could have directed His wrath at us, He loves us, He is patient, and He never forgets us. He gently leads us up the path. He teaches us and transforms us. We learn His righteousness and faith. He gives us peace in our souls and minds and best of all he gives us peace with Himself. Verses 10-13 say,
“Steadfast love and faithfulness meet;
righteousness and peace kiss each other.
11 Faithfulness springs up from the ground,
and righteousness looks down from the sky.
12 Yes, the Lord will give what is good,
and our land will yield its increase.
13 Righteousness will go before him
and make his footsteps a way.”
Isn’t that glorious? The Lord doesn’t forget the promises we make, even when we do! He remembers us. He cherishes us. Though some may be afraid to bow and give their life to someone else, He makes it worth it. He is awesome. His love is amazing. He would never force us. And He would never ask us to do anything He hadn’t done. His footsteps are there because He went first.
People won’t know unless we tell them. People won’t follow unless we follow first. Let’s love as Jesus loves.