September 1, Friday

The AMI QT Devotionals from August 28-September 3 are provided by Hee Jung Lee. Hee Jung, a graduate of Biblical Theological Seminary, serves at Catalyst Agape Church (New Jersey) along with her husband Pastor Sam Lee. They have four beautiful daughters.

DEVOTIONAL THOUGHTS FOR TODAY

Just a glimpse

Matthew 5:8

Blessed are the pure in heart for they will see God.

Jonah 1:1

Now the word of the Lord came to Jonah the son of Amittai, saying, “Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and call out against it, for their evil has come up before me.” But Jonah rose to flee to Tarshish from the presence of the Lord. He went down to Joppa and found a ship going to Tarshish. So he paid the fare and went down into it, to go with them to Tarshish, away from the presence of the Lord. …

Very recently, my family—along with many friends— watched a play called “Jonah,” at Sight and Sound Theater in Pennsylvania. Now Jonah is not necessarily a Bible figure that I personally admired, because he did not come across as one who was after God’s heart, like David, Daniel, and Nehemiah. However, as I watched the play, I began to relate with this character more than I had when reading through the book of Jonah.

In the play, the story goes that Jonah had not heard from the Lord in 17 years. He was a prophet of that time, which means that God’s people relied on him as a messenger of God—to be God’s voice for them. To their dismay, the Lord had not given him a word for a long period. God was silent. So, Jonah in his earnest desire to hear from the Lord seeks Him every day, devoting himself to God in his room. Then one day, the moment came when, finally, the Lord speaks to Jonah. In his initial moment of encounter with the Lord (as highlighted in the play), he is ecstatic beyond words and marvelously delighted (although he eventually realizes what God is asking of him to do).

In a similar way, we should live in such singular pursuit of God, longing to experience and see God. Just one glimpse of God’s glory or one word from Him is like a refreshing drop of water to a thirsty soul. It refreshes life in us and revives us to purposefulness; it deeply satisfies, taking away restlessness and discontentment. Someone asked me recently at a meeting if I am always consumed with wanting an encounter with God; and if I am honest with myself, the answer is probably yes! This is not because I believe that God is far, by any means. I know that His very Spirit lives in me, but there is an unrelenting hunger and cry to have the eyes to see God. There should be a cry in our souls that we will be purified in order that all of Christ will shine and be so evident. This is the true blessedness of life: to have the purity of heart to see God ever so present and actively engaging among us.

Prayer: Dear Jesus, how lovely is Your dwelling place, O Lord! I love Your presence and You are everything that my soul really needs. Thank You for loving me so richly. Please purify every part of me in order that Christ might shine through me, bringing myself and others into deeper encounters with You. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Bible Reading for today: Isaiah 21


Lunch Break Study

Read John 1:14: The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.

Mark 4:18: And others are the ones sown among thorns. They are those who hear the word, 19 but the cares of the world and the deceitfulness of riches and the desires for other things enter in and choke the word, and it proves unfruitful.

Questions to consider

  1. Recall the last moments that you encountered God through His Word, prayer, presence, or experience.
  2. What are some things in your heart that may be keeping you from being able to see God?
  3. What are the things and desires that has been consuming you lately?

Notes

  1. Every relationship has a history that is shared, though some may be longer than others. It is helpful to call to mind key moments that you have shared with the Lord as it enriches your relationship.
  2. Ask the Holy Spirit to show you any impurities in your heart that prevent you from seeing God (i.e., unbelief, unforgiveness, cynicism, etc.), and ask Him to cleanse you.
  3. If God is not on the forefront of our longings, then this means that there are competing things. Ask the Lord to show you the things that may be competing for your passion and heart. Read Matthew 22:37.

Evening Reflection

This morning, we began by reflecting on desiring purity of heart in order to see more of God in our lives. In the light of this sharing, how were you able to see God today?

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