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The Countryside


And he who believes in (has faith in, clings to, relies on) the Son has (now possesses) eternal life. But whoever disobeys (is unbelieving toward, refuses to trust in, disregards, is not subject to) the Son will never see (experience) life, but [instead] the wrath of God abides on him. [God’s displeasure remains on him; His indignation hangs over him continually.] ~ John 3:36 (AMPC)

Simple belief makes us happy, calms our soul, quiets our nerves, and cures us of ill. This is because true and active, legitimate believing happens only in the presence of God. Prior, in this chapter, Jesus and His disciples “went into the land” or the countryside (John 3:22). Here, He remained with His followers, and baptized them. Often, Jesus went off into the countryside, alone to the mountain, to pray. Likewise, we ~ made in God’s image ~ need to set apart time to be alone with God, to be immersed in nature, solitude and prayer. Being too distracted runs us dry. Alternately, God’s presence is a life-force for us—like sun, like light, like air. If Jesus needed time alone with God in the country, certainly we do.


Put the world in its proper place and extol God.


The Vine and the Branches (John 15) shows how life actually works. We desperately need the anointing of God like a tree needs sap or a lightbulb needs current. God alone is the energy of life. He holds in His palm the will to live. But like water in a well, we have to be smart enough to walk up to Him and request it. That exchange of our decay for His renewal only comes from spending time with God, electively. If you are having troubles with your faith, with the maintenance of belief…if cynicism and hard-heartedness is creeping in like a news reel...if a lack of zest is commonplace to your week—spend time alone with God. This becomes absolutely vital for without it our existence drains like a battery with no charge.


This is the fact of how we are designed. We don’t go very long without requiring a reconnect. Our souls need GOD—undivided in our attentions, first in our affections, with only His shoulder to lean against.


Look into His eyes when you pray and

do not deflect His love.


And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil. For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his works should be exposed. But whoever does what is true comes to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that his works have been carried out in God. ~ John 3:19-21 (ESV)

The one who comes to the Light and spends this time simply being in relationship with God automatically finds belief—a source which in itself overcomes the world’s stain of doubt, delusion, and distraction. One who is determined to trust in Jesus over the world’s hustle and bustle, concrete, and senseless intelligence will find the love of God (which makes sense to us). With this love comes Power to overcome the world after Jesus’ footprint on the many grains of sand.


In 3:18 (AMPC), John’s words communicate that no saint experiences rejection.


He who believes in Him [who clings to, trusts in, relies on Him] is not judged [he who trusts in Him never comes up for judgment; for him there is no rejection, no condemnation—he incurs no damnation]; but he who does not believe (cleave to, rely on, trust in Him) is judged already [he has already been convicted and has already received his sentence] because he has not believed in and trusted in the name of the only begotten Son of God. [He is condemned for refusing to let his trust rest in Christ’s name.]

“There is no rejection…” from God for those who are in Christ Jesus. Further, it is impossible for someone God accepts to be rejected by the world or anyone in it. On the contrary. Your Keeper deflects unholy alliances from you—to keep you holy, to keep you clean, to keep you healthy, to keep you on track. Not one hair of your head is ever uncounted—so why on earth would you not trust God with your paycheck, your relationships, where you go on this earth, what you do, and what is coming next?


Saint, march. Confidently.


Go...in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you've imagined. ~ Thoreau

But first, go into the countryside and find your God.


God bless you!

__________________________


Scripture quotations taken from the Amplified® Bible (AMPC), Copyright © 1954, 1958, 1962, 1964, 1965, 1987 by The Lockman Foundation Used by permission. www.lockman.org.


Scripture quotations are from the ESV® Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®), Copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved. May not copy or download more than 500 consecutive verses of the ESV Bible or more than one half of any book of the ESV Bible.


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