The Holy Spirit of God takes the groanings of your heart and interprets them before the Father — all you need to do is to call on God today.
Alright, thank you very much, and hello again radio friends. How in the world are you? Doing alright? Well, I’m grateful for the privilege of sharing with you once again from the Word of God. The last time we got together, we were talking about this matter of a life with meaning. And now we come to Deuteronomy 6:20 where Moses says something as follows, “When thy son asketh thee in time to come, saying, What mean the testimonies, and the statutes, and the judgments, which the Lord our God hath commanded you? Then thou shalt say unto thy son, we were Pharaoh’s bondmen in Egypt; and the Lord brought us out of Egypt with a mighty hand. And the Lord shewed signs,” that’s our word “miracles,” “miracles and wonders, great and sore, upon Egypt, upon Pharaoh, and upon all his household, before our eyes. And he brought us out from thence, that He might bring us in, to give us the land which He promised unto our fathers. And the Lord commanded us to do all these statutes, to fear the Lord our God, for our good always, that He might preserve us alive, as it is at this day. And it shall be our righteousness, if we observe to do all these commandments before the Lord our God, as He hath commanded us.”
Now this is the answer to the question “What does it all mean?” And as I read that passage, it speaks to me in terms of today’s questions about meaning. What is life about and how can I get meaning in my life? The first step toward a real meaningful life is a step of deliverance, dear friend. We were Pharaoh’s bond’s men and the Lord brought us out. Now, you say, “Well, I don’t have to be delivered from anything.” Well, maybe not but maybe so. You may not be the slave of some desperate habit such as narcotics or alcohol or whatever. You may not be in bondage to some occult belief that fills your days and nights with dread; you may not have the sense of being a slave to anything except if you back off, so to speak, from yourself and just look at yourself objectively, you’ll find that you do pretty regularly follow your own desires.
The bondage that most people are in is bondage to self. Had you thought about that? The bondage that most people experience is a bondage to their own desires. How often have you said, “I know I shouldn’t but I can’t help it?” Or how often have you thought to yourself, “I want this so much and I’m going to do it?” Or the negative also is true, “I don’t want this and I’m not going to do it,” you know. And so we follow our own desires very frequently, do we not? And there is a logical outcome of that.
How often have you had to say to yourself, “Boy, I really messed that up.” Why? Well, just because you followed your desires. “There’s a way that seemeth right unto a man, the end thereof are the ways of death,” the Bible says. “All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way.” Do you recall the phrase, “I have to be me, let me do my own thing?” Popular in the 60s and 70s and still used today by some. “Let me do my own thing. Let me be me. I have to do my own thing. Let me alone.”
Well, that’s human nature talking. And the Bible says it very clearly, “We have turned everyone to his own way.” But what’s the result of going your own way? Getting astray. “All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way.” So doing your own thing very frequently leads you astray from God and from His will. Wouldn’t you agree that that’s so? The real deliverance, then, turns out to be not deliverance from some tremendous force in your life but just deliverance from yourself and your own desires. Free not to do your own thing, but free for the first time in your life to do God’s will.
You see, real freedom is not abandonment of all restraint. If a locomotive could talk and if it were able to say, “I don’t like being on these tracks. I’m gonna get off the tracks and go where I please,” how long will it last? “Why,” you say, “a train that’s off the tracks is no good.” And of course you’re right. To be free in that sense means “stay on the track.” The restraint provided by those two ribbons of steel that stretch out across the landscape provide freedom from the locomotive and the train of cars it pulls to reach its destination. Free.
How would you like it if the pilot of the airplane in which you are riding said, “Oh, today, let’s not bother with the navigational charts, let’s not bother with the weather reports, and let’s not bother with the autopilot that keeps the plane on course. Let’s just do whatever we feel like. Let’s take it up a little and down a little and around a little. Let’s have fun,” would you like that? I don’t think you would. Why? Because you want to get from Chicago to New York or from New York to Washington or whatever it may be and you don’t want somebody just being free with the airplane and turning it whichever way they will.
Freedom, for you, means freedom to get on the airplane and have it stay on course. Well, that’s pretty obvious, isn’t it? But, you see, most people think, “Oh, if I can only do whatever I pleased, then I would be free.” No. The result of doing what you please ends up in being in bondage to yourself and to your sins and to the results of those actions all of which are hard and tragic and unpleasant. “The way,” the Bible says, “the way of transgressors is hard.” And so that’s what we have to face up to.
Somewhere along the line, I need to say, “Oh, God, I don’t want what I want any more. I want what You want.” Jesus our Blessed Lord said it, didn’t He? As He prayed there in the garden of Gethsemane, He said, “Nevertheless not my will but Thine be done. Oh, my father,” He prayed, “if it be possible, that this cup,” that spoke of the suffering of Calvary, “let this cup pass from me; nevertheless not as I will but as Thy, as Thy wilt, Thy will be done.” And He taught us to pray the same type of prayer in what is known as the Lord’s prayer, “Our Father which art in Heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come,” that’s the king-ness of God, the reign of God in your life, “Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in Earth as it is in Heaven.”
That’s the pattern for the praying that you and I are to do. Now, real meaning then in your life comes when you and I are delivered from our own bondage. Bondage to worry. Are you a worrywart? God can deliver you from that. Bondage to dishonesty. Do you tend to trim the truth when you’re under pressure? God can deliver you from that. Bondage to fear. Are you constantly afraid of things and people and dreadful unnamed situations, the what-if syndrome – what if something happens? Are you constantly afraid of things, a genuine gnawing fear that no amount of lecturing by well-intentioned friends and relatives can remove?
I’ve long since learned that lecturing a person doesn’t make him any less afraid are any less sad. It takes the touch of a person — the Lord Jesus Christ. And He can deliver you from your fears, my friend. Oh, yes, He can. Bondage to resentment and hatred and unforgiveness. Somebody has hurt you dreadfully either recently or years ago as the case may be and the wound is so deep, the scar is so terrible, and the hurt is so keen, and you say, “I can’t get over it.” And humanly, you may be right. But, oh, Jesus can deliver you from the resentment and the hurt and the unforgiveness and He can give you a forgiving spirit.
The sister of Corrie ten Boom died in a concentration camp in Germany and the man who is responsible for her death – his face, his voice, and his memory were etched in hurt, and you may say almost in hatred in the heart of Corrie ten Boom. A horrible, sinful, cruel, ruthless man he was, and he had caused the death of her dear sister. And day by day she remembered all that happened in those dreadful days. And then one day as Corrie ten Boom was ministering the word of God in Germany, after the meeting, a man strode up to her and held out his hand and he said, “I’m a Christian. I have now received Jesus Christ as my savior. And my name is,” and he gave her his name and she recognized the voice and the face and the name of that man who had caused the death of her sister.
And as he held out his hand toward her, he said, “Will you forgive me, Corrie ten Boom?” Now, she faced the acid test. Would God deliver her from the resentment and the hatred and the hurt that had been there through the years toward this man who had caused the death of her sister there in the concentration camp? And she sent up a quick prayer to God for help and suddenly she found her heart filled with the love of God and she held out her hand and she said with a smile, “I do forgive you, and because of Jesus, I do love you.” Oh, what a deliverance.
And you, my friend, can have that same experience in your own life — deliverance from the things that you couldn’t handle yourself – dread and doubt and fear and resentment and hatred and unforgiveness and worry and fret — all of these things constitute that which you and I need to be delivered from. And when He does deliver you, my precious friend, you have begun a life that means something. It’ll mean something to you, it will mean something to those who know you best. If you’ve been a worrier, for instance, and now all of a sudden you’re not worrying anymore, your family will be greatly relieved and delighted that they don’t have you around worrying and fretting any longer.
Give the worry to God. Don’t be a victim of the “what if” syndrome. What if something terrible happens? Instead of that, trust your blessed Lord with active faith every moment of every day to keep you and to guide you and to protect you and to use you. Yes, life will be meaningful when God delivers you from the things that have made you a victim to your own self interests and desires. Let Him do it. Now, how do you go about that? The Bible says very simply, “whosoever shall call upon the Lord shall be saved.”
And we read in Jeremiah 33 verse three, “Call unto me and I will answer thee and show thee great and mighty things which thou knowest not”. Catherine Marshall says in one of her books that having exhausted all of her worry potential and not really knowing what to pray for concerning a very serious situation that affected some of her dear ones, she simply prayed very earnestly, “Dear Heavenly Father, please have mercy upon so and so,” and she said the situation began to improve from that very day.
Oh, the Holy Spirit of God takes the groanings of your heart and interprets them before the Father and all you need to do is to call on God today, my friend. Ask Him for His help. Say, “God, this is my problem.” Spell it out to Him. Ask Him to help you and He will. “Call unto me,” He says. Ask God for help specifically in these areas where you need deliverance and then trust Him to do so. And the next time you’re tested along that line, just simply look up and say, “Lord, this is your responsibility now. Keep me now,” and He will.
Dear Father today, keep us delivered people, for Jesus’ sake, Amen.
Till I meet you once again by way of radio, walk with the King today and be a blessing!
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