Saturday, June 09, 2007

G.P.S...God's Positioning System

One of the hottest new forms of technology on the market today is the little gadget commonly referred to as a GPS. It stands for Global Positioning System. It is used in the scientific world, in space technology, and by ordinary folks like you and me. It helps people find where they want to go. It helps rescuers find lost people. It helps fishermen, hikers, mountain climbers, and pilots to find their way to their destination. 24 hours a day, a system of 24 satellites sends signals to the little device, triangulating the precise location of it. There are endless possibilities for use in the future. It is anticipated that it will even help the blind to find their way. It may be used to track endangered species of animals and perhaps even monitor the location of children and the elderly.
Long before scientists developed this unique tool for navigation, God gave us His own unique tool for spiritual navigation. We might call it a “God’s Positioning System”. It helps believers find their way through life with confidence. It helps them to know what God wants them to do each and every day. While many people sometimes struggle with knowing God’s will for their life, that struggle is unnecessary if they will just rely on God’s Positioning System.
The Word of God
While the skeptical world tends to make light of the validity of the Bible, in reality, it is the most accurate point of reference for the Christian. Historians and archeologists are amazed at the accuracy that has been passed down from generation to generation. Scribes painstakingly copied the sacred text, counting each individual letter, to make sure that nothing was omitted or added to the text. It was then counted a second time by a master scribe who compared his count to the first. In this way, copies of the Bible and Torah, have passed down to today virtually intact. God’s Positioning System, the Bible, can be counted on! Today, when we read the words in the Bible, we often fail to appreciate the gift we have been given. The Bible not only is an accurate historical record, but a vital tool for everyday living. It gives us spiritual insight and wisdom and reveals divine truths that help us find our way. When we read text books in our schools today, we often discover that history is being conveniently rewritten to push a particular point of view. We call these authors ‘revisionists’ as they try to eliminate from our history books the spiritual and Godly influences by the founding fathers of the United States. The Islamic world wants to ‘revise’ the history of the Jewish holocaust. Changing it in the books does not make the reality go away, but it does change what people tend to believe. That is why the accuracy of the Bible is so very important. The Bible is a unique collection of 66 books written by numerous authors all declaring the same truths over and over again. Minor discrepancies are often pointed to by the skeptics who forget that each story is told from a different perspective. Just as a car accident is seen differently from an adult or child or passenger or bystander perspective, so the Bible gives us different points of view. Each gospel, Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, tells the story from a persons perspective, yet together we see a cohesive picture that is astounding.
The Bible can be counted on to guide our daily lives. It is a tangible GPS for every believer. It is a map for those who are lost. It is a voice to those who will listen, telling us what God wants us to know today. It requires no satellites to beam its message. It never fails to speak to those who long to hear its words of truth. It will give clear direction to a confused soul. After reading it for the past fifty years, I continue to discover new paths to walk and the picture of my final destination becomes clearer and clearer.
The Holy Spirit
The authorship of the Bible was not just men doing their ‘thing’. It was a divinely inspired creation. Men wrote on paper and papyrus what the Holy Spirit spoke into their hearts. In a GPS there is a lovely voice that speaks out the directions. “Turn right in 500 100 100 feet.” The Holy Spirit is like that too. God sent Him, not just to be with us but to be ‘in’ us… to tell us what we need to know… to reveal truth, to edify, encourage and teach. He taught the disciples as He recalled to their minds all the things Jesus had taught them as He walked with them for three years. He helped them piece it all together. “Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit” in Acts 4:8 was enabled to speak boldly about Jesus, and people were amazed that these “ignorant and unschooled men” could declare like seasoned orators. They realized these men had been with Jesus. In Acts 5:32 Peter declared: “And we are His witnesses to these things, and so also is the Holy Spirit whom God has given to those who obey Him.” He knew the source of power and truth.
Today, Christians have that same source of power and truth available to them. The Holy Spirit is our GPS. The Holy Spirit is God. He is part of the trinity. He does not change. He is here to help you today. He wants you to get into the Word of God so He can teach you what you need to know. He wants to reveal Jesus to you. He will make Him so real in your life, if you let Him. Believers tend to rely on everything but the Holy Spirit. They rely on what the pastor says or the Sunday school teacher, or their friends or co-workers. They even tend to rely on Hollywood movies and documentaries more than they do on the Holy Spirit.
The early church counted on the Holy Spirit to assist them in their task of telling the world. They valued the Spirit in choosing deacons, they chose “men of good reputation, full of the Holy Spirit and wisdom.” (Acts 6:3) Stephen the first martyr, was one of those chosen. Another was Philip who shared the message with an Ethiopian, baptized him and…. “ when they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught Philip away, so that the eunuch saw him no more; and he went on his way rejoicing.” Philip found himself some 20 miles away after this incident. Strange things sometimes happen when the Spirit is given free reign. Our GPS knows things we do not know. He knows the road we must take. He knows what lays ahead in the future. He knows the best way to accomplish a task. He knows how to meet the need perfectly. He knows how to reveal the truth. ““But when the Helper comes, whom I shall send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify of Me.” (John 15:26) We have that same ‘Helper’ today. He still comes to help us. He knows truth for He is Truth. When we are lacking in guidance, when we don’t know the will of God, when we face circumstances we don’t understand, He is there. When we share our faith with the lost, He gives us the words to say. When we need to hear from God, He is our GPS in the still of the night, speaking to our souls, giving us what we need to hear. He makes the words of the Bible jump from the pages into our hearts.
Its unfortunate today that many Christians try to find their own way… and they are like men lost in a blizzard...fading fast. Our independent streak keeps us from consulting our heavenly GPS. Pride tells us we can do it all by ourselves. Unfortunately frozen zombies never arrive at their proper destination. Pilots today have learned to land huge aircraft in a blind fog because they have learned to trust their navigational equipment. Are we so foolish to think we can fly through life without our Godly Positioning System working? When we trust in what we can do, we short-change ourselves. When we trust in what God has to offer, we learn that He always knows what is best. When we think we need more ‘stuff’ in our closets, He knows when to refocus our priorities. When we think we know how to figure it all out, somehow He always unravels our ‘ideas’ and shows us a better way. When we begin to rely on our own resources, He sometimes jerks the ‘resources’ from under us and then proceeds to ‘open the windows of heaven.’ When we put Him in charge of it all, life becomes a trail of miracles. Once you walk that trail, you will never want to go back to doing things ‘your’ way ever again.
The Goal
The GPS of God teaches us that we are to be filled with the Holy Spirit, walk in the Spirit, yield to the Spirit, be taught by the Spirit, and pray in the Spirit. Yet how often do we ‘grieve’ the Holy Spirit. Every time we fail to trust Him, every time we turn away and fail to obey His voice, we grieve Him. It’s not always easy to go against what sometimes appears the proper thing to do, when the Spirit directs otherwise. But God’s way is always best. He sees the whole picture. We see just a little bit. Trust puts your hand in His and lets Him lead. It is like a father-child relationship. When Father guides us, when we hold His hand, He never lets us stumble or fall.
Do you know where you are going? Do you know how to get there? What are you counting on to find your way? Plug in your GPS to the Power Source, and let Him track your life. In an electronic GPS, it takes timing and distance to determine location. An atomic clock in the satellite determines the timing. Your distance from the satellite is the second factor. With God, His timing is always perfect and accurate. No matter how far you are from Him, there is no distance with God. He knows just how to triangulate your life. Just because you feel lost, does not mean you are. If He knows where you are, you are never lost. Even Jonah was not lost in the belly of the whale. The moment Jonah prayed, his GPS kicked in and God began to guide him.
Are you feeling a little lost? God knows where you are. He knows your future. He know your past. Nothing is hidden from Him. Let Him guide your life today and tomorrow. Let God be your GPS for life through the Word and the Holy Spirit. He will never let you down. You will arrive at your final destination safely.
J. Johnson

1 comment:

Pastor Ken said...

Excellent words of direction and encouragement for the believer and the lost.