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DAILY DEVOTIONS
 

  In more than three decades of my Christian life, I have been blest by 2 types of Daily devos' (matter not exceeding 500 words) in universal Christian literature. Not only those Devos' which have a different theme everyday but also the ones which revolve around a certain theme over a period of time, say a fortnight, have richly edified me. In fact, both styles have their own inherent advantages. If the former style caters to the varying spiritual needs of a christian from day-to-day, the latter aims 'to ground' a child of God in a certain subject in order he derives the full benefits of the deep insightful study of a certain topic, spread over a fixed span of time.

In my Daily devo page, I have consciously tried to go in for 'a blend of both the styles' whereby within a constant theme, I would be aiming to focus on different facets of it which admittedly is a closer imitation of the 'Constant theme' style than the 'Varying topics' one.

Having dwelt on the topic of Christian journey in the previous month, now in the month of Febraury, I intend to focus on a monumental piece of Jewish history….the Conquest of Canaan, with its particular relevance to modern day breed of Christian spiritual warriors.

Once again, let me wish you a happy and an edifying read…

Suresh Manoharan




February 11th

Eyes on the Guide



After three days the officers went throughout the camp, giving orders to the people: "When you see the ark of the covenant of the LORD your God, and the priests, who are Levites, carrying it, you are to move out from your positions and follow it. Then you will know which way to go, since you have never been this way before. But keep a distance of about a thousand yards between you and the ark; do not go near it."- Joshua 3:2-4
 
  Well, the awe-inspiring account of the crossing of River Jordan by the children of Israel under the leadership of Joshua holds out a few valuable lessons for us. If yesterday’s lesson centered on we doing our part in improbable situations, leaving the rest to him, today’s lesson, is all about keeping eyes focused on our Great Guide in emergency situations.

In any high-risk adventure sport like rafting down the rapids for instance, it is important to keep an eye on the guide at all times, not only for the purpose of listening and cleaving to his instructions but also for letting that sheer feeling of security which his visible presence would generate, ‘sink in’, what with unseen danger lurking at every maneuverable corner. In that nitty-gritty situation, its important, that one ought not to panic; in order the wrong moves which panic can lead to, (probably leading to an ill-afforded capsize), be nipped in the bud.

Coming to the Biblical realm, it is so reassuring to know that every verse in it has been put in place with a purpose to convey both a contextual as well as a deeper spiritual meaning. Take the instruction to the people of Israel to maintain a distance of nearly a mile from the sacred ark, for instance.

Contextually, these instructions refer exclusively to the advance into the river. Had they crowded too near the ark, the view would have been intercepted, and this intervening space, therefore, was ordered, that the ark which symbolized their Great Guide’s presence might be distinctly visible to all parts of the camp, generating forthwith that feeling of security all around.

That feeling of security was what evaporated from Peter’s heart when his gaze shifted from (seeing) Jesus to the raging waves lashing at his feet, whilst walking on water (Matt 14:22-33), leading to all too well known (now) desperate call for help.

God wanted his people eyes to be transfixed on the ark alone which symbolized Him with all his protective care in order their gaze would not wander off to the nearby surging waters with its latent potential to trigger a mass panic reaction.

Dear Friends, whilst going through a tough, faith-defining, crossing ‘River Jordan’ situation, how paramount it is to ‘walk straight’ with our spiritual eyes firmly fixed on Him, in order we do not get distracted by the turbulent ‘waves’ lashing at us from several directions, with their innate capacity to set-off a faith-weakening alarm in us. Remember the other side of the shore, is not too faraway…

Prayer:

Father, how secure we feel, when we have our eyes firmly fixed on thee and not on our surrounding problems’, for no problem is greater than thy redeeming power. We praise thee in Jesus’ name. Amen.
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