Posted by: mikenicholsblog | September 16, 2012

God alone

A few days ago in chatting with a friend who climbs mountains (can you imagine?!), I asked him the ultimate question. “Are you going to climb Mt. Everest?” He climbs mountains to raise money for disadvantaged children, but Everest carried no allure. I understood why when he told me that it costs $150,000 to make the climb, and 25% of the climbers die. Now, I have no idea how accurate the statistics are, but those numbers were staggering to me. Why would anyone risk death and spending a fortune to climb a mountain? There are just a select few with the courage to test the mountain.

Correspondingly, I have been meditating on some verses over the past week that I might also characterize as a place rarely visited/tested. It is not a land with grass and snow, and mountain peaks. It doesn’t cost real money, and doesn’t carry with it a risk of physical death. I believe it to be a place available to all who know God, through Christ as their Savior, and all who venture there find it to be filled with comfort and security, even in the most trying of times.  Where/what is this place, and why would a place like this be so rarely visited?

When you hear the verses quoted or mentioned, I would venture you find it easy to say, “Yes, I believe them.” However, is it a place that you visit often?

Psalm 62:1-2
My soul finds rest in God alone; my salvation comes from him. He alone is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I will never be shaken.

David was at a rough patch in his life. Some even feel it could have been after his son Absalom tried to take his throne from him (imagine that pain).  Humanly speaking, he was in a desperate place. However, when you read the verses above, there is a sense of safety, a voice of confidence and firm resolve. He had no doubts that God was the solid rock under his feet, and a fortress to protect him. He found his rest in God alone.  It was not God plus his own strength, or God plus his army … it was God alone. David certainly had his failures, but at this specific moment he realized something that every Christ follower should internalize; that peace comes when we learn to stop depending on ourselves, and trusting Him for every (I mean, every) area of our lives. Now you see why I view these verses as a place rarely visited. We all want more of God plus <fill in the blank>, rather than God alone.

For you and for me, David’s words can ring true. In meditating on these verses, I have found that they slow me down, cause me to release issues to Him and generally gain a sense of spiritual balance. Charles Swindoll, in his book entitled Jesus: The Greatest Life of All, caught the essence of what I am trying to convey. “To enter our Sabbath rest, we must put an end to self-reliance-trusting our own abilities to overcome difficulties, rise above challenges, escape tragedies, or achieve personal greatness. We must cease striving and trust God to provide what He thinks is best and in whatever time He chooses to make it available.”  Well said!

My soul finds rest in God alone.  It’s a place of safety, comfort and protection. Would you consider visiting that place for even just a day? It takes incredible courage to climb Everest to gain what is essentially a temporal thrill. Finding rest in God alone is more than a momentary thrill; it’s a place of great and lasting peace.  Make sure it’s on your bucket list!

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