It is Well with my Soul BYU Vocal Point

Friday, September 25, 2015

Captivity : Thoughts on Ezekiel



 
The depths of God’s holy rage against his sinful, impenitent people, are terrifying.  The suffering he inflicted on them is unimaginable.  And once he was spent, he was once more willing to forgive should they humble themselves.  “The Lord will judge his people. It is a terrible thing to fall into the hands of the Almighty God.” (Heb. 10:31)

'The book of Ezekiel details all of the suffering God planned to bring about to his people for their disobedience and betrayal...They  had fallen so far into idolatry that they were even burning their babies alive as a sacrifice to Molech -- a pagan god.  God had had enough...he now planned to destroy them...to bring them to captivity and to those who did not go into captivity he brought famine so severe that his people were cooking and eating their babies.
 
I never ever want to anger him…not even slightly….and I know that the blood of his beloved Son protects me…he absorbed God’s rage by his suffering at Calvary.  I’m so very grateful to Jesus for his death which made it possible for me to be God’s beloved—secure from his wrath. But it is not only God’s wrath that bids me obey.  I never want to be responsible for God’s pain.

  God has been bringing to mind, like flotsam in a pond floating to the surface, memories of past sin.  There are sins committed in my childhood which I have dealt with…but more and more are rising.   I deserve God’s wrath.  I deserve the punishments he poured on Israel.  I quake with horror at the thoughts of past dishonesty and other things too heinous to mention here.  I have prayed and asked God to bring to mind things that I need to seek forgiveness for.  And he is doing that…but only one or two memories of unholy behavior and words at a time. I am grateful not to see the full story of my sins…I would be swept away by the sorrow and regret.

I am so thankful for God’s willingness to restore me to himself.    It was a horrible price that he paid in order to call me daughter….or his bride.  It was not only God’s anger that is evident in Ezekiel…but his heartbroken sadness at the betrayal of his children …this is hard for me to read.  I know that God’s heart broke when I spurned him and tried to rescue myself from mental illness. The anger I felt toward him –wrongfully blaming him for the disaster that was my life is a horrible thought to me now.  I rejected my only Hope.  I turned my back on his Peace.  I was entirely cold to his Love.  I lost every ounce of my Faith…. all but one ounce.  God would not put out the smoking wick –he fanned it into flame over a period of years…until I was able and ready to be his child once more… I never stopped being his child -- once God’s; always God’s—I just did not acknowledge him as FATHER.  The Lover of my soul…

I’m feeling grateful today for a God who has every right and the complete power to squash me like a bug---but who instead clothes me in white and waits to welcome me in the home he has prepared for me.
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