Refreshing Candor

Of the many things I love about my mom, chief among them may be her candor. Many times I have called to ask her opinion on a matter and she has consistently responded, “Don’t ask my opinion unless you want to hear it. I’m not going to try to figure out what you want to hear. I’ll tell you what I really think.”

In a world where words are carefully parsed, her straightforwardness is refreshing. It is also one of the characteristics of a true friend. Real friends speak the truth to us in love—even if it isn’t what we want to hear. As the proverb says, “Faithful are the wounds of a friend” (Prov. 27:6).

This is one of the reasons Jesus is the greatest of friends. When He encountered the woman at the well (John 4:7-26), He refused to be pulled into a tug-of-war over secondary issues but instead drove to the deepest issues and needs of her heart. He challenged her about the character of the Father and lovingly spoke to her of her broken dreams and deep disappointments.

As we walk with our Lord, may we allow Him to speak candidly to the true condition of our hearts through the Scriptures—that we might turn to Him and find His grace to help us in our times of need.

Father, thank You for sending Your Son to be my Savior and the greatest of friends. Help me to learn from Him how loving honesty can make a difference in helping the hurting people around me.
Jesus always tells us truth.

Tozer Devotional-Encountering the Whole Word of God

Encountering the Whole Word of God

Almost every cult with which we have any acquaintance practices this art of selecting and ignoring. The no-hell cults, for example, habitually stress everything in the Bible that seems to support their position and play down or explain away all the passages that deal with eternal punishment.

But we do well to look closer to home. Proneness to heresy is not confined to the cults. By nature, we are all heretics. We who count ourselves to be in the historic tradition of sound doctrine may in actual practice become heretics after a sort. We may unconsciously select for special attention such Scriptures as comfort and encourage us and pass over the ones that rebuke and warn us. This trap is so easy to fall into that we may be in it before we are aware.

Take, for instance, the “well-marked” Bible. It might be an illuminating experience to peep into one sometimes and note how the owner has underscored almost exclusively the passages that console him or that support his views on doctrine. We habitually love the verses that are easy on us and shy away from the ones that disturb us.

http://www.cmalliance.org/devotions/tozer?id=827

Song of Solomon 3:1 I sought him, but I found him not.

Tell me where you lost the company of a Christ, and I will tell you the most likely place to find Him. Have you lost Christ in the closet by restraining prayer? Then it is there you must seek and find Him. Did you lose Christ by sin? You will find Christ in no other way but by the giving up of the sin, and seeking by the Holy Spirit to mortify the member in which the lust doth dwell. Did you lose Christ by neglecting the Scriptures? You must find Christ in the Scriptures. It is a true proverb, “Look for a thing where you dropped it, it is there.” So look for Christ where you lost Him, for He has not gone away. But it is hard work to go back for Christ. Bunyan tells us, the pilgrim found the piece of the road back to the Arbour of Ease, where he lost his roll, the hardest he had ever travelled. Twenty miles onward is easier than to go one mile back for the lost evidence. Take care, then, when you find your Master, to cling close to Him. But how is it you have lost Him? One would have thought you would never have parted with such a precious friend, whose presence is so sweet, whose words are so comforting, and whose company is so dear to you! How is it that you did not watch Him every moment for fear of losing sight of Him? Yet, since you have let Him go, what a mercy that you are seeking Him, even though you mournfully groan, “O that I knew where I might find Him!” Go on seeking, for it is dangerous to be without thy Lord. Without Christ you are like a sheep without its shepherd; like a tree without water at its roots; like a sere leaf in the tempest-not bound to the tree of life. With thine whole heart seek Him, and He will be found of thee: only give thyself thoroughly up to the search, and verily, thou shalt yet discover Him to thy joy and gladness.

http://www.crosswalkmail.com/ShareArticle.do?perform=view&articleID=gcnttkmmt&siteID=ivgnhzydngnycdfbkqtptyzcvkkcgmythhf&recipID=526889780

Tozer Devotional-We and Our Times are in God’s Hands

We and Our Times are in God‘s Hands

The man of true faith may live in the absolute assurance that his steps are ordered by the Lord. For him, misfortune is outside the bounds of possibility. He cannot be torn from this earth one hour ahead of the time which God has appointed, and he cannot be detained on earth one moment after God is done with him here. He is not a waif of the wide world, a foundling of time and space, but a saint of the Lord and the darling of His particular care.

All this is not mere dreaming, not a comforting creed woven as a garment to warm the shivering hearts of lonely, frightened souls in a dark and unfriendly world. Rather it is of the essence of truth, a fair summation of the teaching of the Bible on the subject and should be received reverently and joyously along with everything else which is taught in the Scriptures of truth.

Here then I doubt no more,

But in His pleasure rest,

Whose wisdom, love and truth, and power

Engage to make me blest.

http://www.cmalliance.org/devotions/tozer?id=780

Tozer Devotional-The Bible’s Purpose

The Bible‘s Purpose

In recent years the Bible has been recommended for many other purposes than the one for which it was written. The peace of mind cults, for instance, manage to find in it oil for the troubled waters of the soul; but to make it work they must pick, choose, misunderstand and misapply quite literally to their heart’s content. Now, the Bible when read honestly and responsibly does bring peace of mind, but only after it has first brought the heart to a repentance that is often anything but peaceful. When the entire life has been morally transformed and the heart purified from sin, then the seeker can know real and legitimate peace. Any manipulation of the Scriptures to make them speak peace to the natural man is evil and can only lead to ruin.

A few years ago it was fairly popular practice for Bible teachers to claim to find in the Scriptures confirmation of almost every new discovery made by science. Apparently no one noticed that the scientist had to find it before the Bible teacher could, and it never seemed to occur to anyone to wonder why, if it was there in the Bible in such plain sight, it took several thousand years and the help of science before anyone saw it.

Now, I believe that everything in the Bible is true, but to attempt to make it a textbook for science is to misunderstand it completely and tragically. The purpose of the Bible is to bring men to Christ, to make them holy and prepare them for heaven. In this it is unique among books, and it always fulfills its purpose when it is read in faith and obedience.

http://www.cmalliance.org/devotions/tozer

Tozer Devotional-Worldly Pollution

Worldly Pollution

What, then, is that world against which we are warned by the apostles? That world whose friendship constitutes spiritual adultery, the love of which stands in opposition to the love of God?

It is the familiar world of sinful human society which swells about and beneath us as the waters of the flood once surged and churned around the ark of Noah. No Christian need fail to recognize it, provided he wants to know what it is and where it is located. Here are a few infallible marks of identification:

1. Unbelief. Wherever men refuse to come under the authority of the inspired Scriptures, there is the world. Religion without the Son of God is worldly religion. To have fellowship with those who live in unbelief is to love the world. The Christian’s communion should be with Christians.

2. Impenitence. The people of the world will readily admit that they are sinners, but their lack of sorrow for sin distinguishes them from the children of God. The Christian mourns over his sin and is comforted. The worldling shrugs off his sin and continues in it.

http://www.cmalliance.org/devotions/tozer?id=742