July 5, 2008
July 4th is a time for us to be thankful that we are a free nation. A time to stop and reflect on how our nation was built on godly principles by godly men. We have freedoms in our country that other countries do not have. We have been blessed. But, although we were built on godly principles, we, as a nation, have gotten away from God. So many people have turned from God and sinned and lived wicked lives. Even some of God’s people are not living godly lives and experiencing changed behaviors by being obedient to Him. We get so caught up in everything around us that at times we are not recognized as being different from the world.
This morning God directed me to the old testament to read about the temple that Solomon built and then to the book of Ezra. In 2 Chronicles 7 we read about the dedication of the temple after it had been built. Then God appeared to Solomon and told him in verse 14: “If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.” First God says to humble ourselves by admitting our sin. Next pray to Him and ask forgiveness. Then seek Him continually and then turn from sinful behavior. To truly repent we must change our behavior.
In the book of Ezra we read about a man who spent his whole life dedicated to serving God and God’s people. He had a great knowledge of God’s Word and taught the people what His Word said. He believed God and obeyed what He told him. The people had gotten away from God, just as our nation has. Ezra was deeply grieved over their disobedience and fell in humility before God and prayed for the nation. His humble confession led to a national revival.
Oh that we would all turn from our wicked ways and humble ourselves for our own disobedience and cry out to God for our nation. If Christians will pray and seek God continually we can make a difference. God is watching and He is listening!