Under God's Hand, Part 2

Joseph was a good example of a man who kept himself under God's control. Other Bible characters were as faithful to God as he was. David, although he fell into sexual sin, repented sincerely when faced with his error. Abraham had his weaknesses, too, but he followed God's plan for his life. Joshua and Caleb were the only Israelites who left Egypt who were able to enter the Promised Land because they were faithful to bring an honest report of their trip into Canaan. They believed God would lead them as He had promised.

Keeping ourselves under God's hand involves adhering to faithfulness in certain areas of our lives.

Of course, we will never make it to heaven without God's grace-filled plan of salvation. However, He wants us to be faithful to Him, too. We can't expect God to keep His part of the covenant with us, if we fail to keep ours.

The covenant begins with accepting Christ as our Savior. "‘I am the way and the truth and the life,'" Jesus said. "‘No one comes to the Father except through me" (John 14:6). He didn't say He was "a way" or "a truth"--He used the specific article "the." There is no other way to God except through believing that Jesus, His Son, died to pay for our sin and rose again.

Another area in which we can hold ourselves faithful to God is through worship. Worship is adoration of God and His great salvation plan. "God is love" (1 John 4:16), and He showed His love by making a way for sinful people to be made right with Him. Worship keeps us ever conscious of His love for us.

Prayer is talking to God. He is delighted when we ask him for His blessings. When we see how He answers prayer, we understand our weakness in handling our affairs and His all-powerful ability to meet our needs. Through faithfulness in prayer, we speak to God and God speaks directly to our hearts and minds--a heart-to-heart conversation.

Reading the Bible is vital. God instructs us through words He impressed men of God to write (2 Timothy 3:16). In the Bible we read the stories of men and women who were as weak as we are, yet, through God's help, He brought them to places of great spiritual strength--and we are encouraged. God instructs us through reading His Word; however, obeying those instructions is as important as reading them. Understanding God's orders and not obeying them is fruitless.

Memorizing Scripture is important, too. When we have God's Word in our hearts and minds, He can speak to us or speak through us when we may not have instant access to reading Scripture. When we have memorized a Bible portion, we take it with us into our schools, workplaces, shopping trips, or our visits with a neighbor who may need to hear a word from God.

When we recognize God's hand in even the smallest details of our lives, we are constantly reminded that God loves us.

In a gorgeous sunset, a perfect rose, and the scents of spring we acknowledge the hand of the God who loves us enough to bless us. The Psalmist recognized God's hand in a night sky when he wrote, "The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands" (Psalm 19:1).

God not only is willing to bless us with His care, but also wants to do so. He will bless us as we faithfully keep ourselves under His hand.