Why, O LORD, do you make us wander from your ways and harden our hearts so we do not revere you? Return for the sake of your servants, the tribes that are your inheritance. Isaiah 63:17
“Wander from your ways” is powerfully descriptive as we consider how easy it is to move away from a right relationship to God. It doesn’t take effort to drift. You just quit trying. You lose focus. Staying close to God requires effort. We’re not talking about earning our salvation…that is not dependent upon our effort, but upon God’s grace. Maintaining and nurturing the relationship will mean giving ourselves to prayer, the Word, fellowship, and worship.
How many have shipwrecked their faith, not by deliberate rebellion, but by drifting away through inattention? Wandering aimlessly through life, we miss the Lord’s presence and His power to transform. Might that even be a picture of the 21st century church today as we wander away from the firm commitment to daily seek His face?
Oh God, forgive my tendency to wander away from You. I get so caught up in daily activities, that I find myself off doing my own thing and not paying attention to You. Like the hymnist I find myself saying, “prone to wander, Lord I feel it, prone to leave the God I love. Here’s my heart Lord, take and seal it, seal it for thy courts above.”
–By David Butts, author of The Devil Goes to Church (Combating the Everyday Attacks of Satan)
Praise Jesus, who welcomes the weary. Thank him for lifted burdens (Mt. 11:25-30). Confess that the way you fill your days often ignores Jesus’ offer of rest. Commit to enjoying this rest yourself and sharing it with others. Ask God for a specific way you can eliminate something from your schedule in order to create time for resting in the Lord.
Pray that Christians will multiply God’s infinite mercy by befriending people with disabilities, helping released prisoners find work, and sheltering refugees.
“No time is so well spent in every day as that which we spend upon our knees.” J. C. Ryle
–Prayer Points taken from Patterns for Prayer by Alvin VanderGriend (Click on the blue title for more information about this resource).