Job 33:26-28
It seems to me that God is too often presented in a way that causes people to not really get the whole picture. I think people call upon God because of what they can get from Him, and not because they realize they need Him. Don’t get me wrong. God has a lot to give us. We need forgiveness, grace, justification, salvation, love, provision, and more than we could ever ask or think. What I’m referring to is how people, myself included, can call upon Him in such a way where we want the bad feelings to go away and we want to feel good. And that is indeed part of what God does. But that isn’t the end. It isn’t the point. These verses in Job are a great description of what it looks like when someone gets it. Man realizes his need for God, that without God he perishes. He rejoices in God’s salvation. He sings it before others and shouts, “I once was lost but now I’m found! I was blind but now I see!” He understands he deserved destruction but it wasn’t repaid to him. Instead, his life shall look upon light instead of darkness. That is the reality of our need for Him and the basis of our relationship with Him. That should be our response to this reality. Is that how you see it? Take a moment and reexamine your relationship with Jesus. What is it based on; what you get, or what you need?

Zechariah 9:16-17
Feeling safe after feeling in danger is one of the coolest feelings. It could be your bank account approaching zero with bills to pay, and suddenly someone gives you some money out of nowhere. The sense of relief is amazing. It could be you are spinning out on an icy road with other cars, telephone poles, and a ditch close by. When that car stops and no one is hurt (including the car), it’s an amazing rush. How much more so when we realize God has saved us. We are His flock, his people. We are of value to Him. How much value? How much are we worth to God? We are worth His Son Jesus. More than that, God wants to use us to save others. We are like the jewels of a crown. I once saw the crown jewels of England. Those are sparkly. They get ones attention. They declare and demonstrate royalty. That’s how God sees His people. That’s how He sees you if you are in Jesus. If you aren’t in Jesus, you can be.

Revelation 8:1
When something dramatic happens it usually has the effect of causing people to be quiet and it focuses their attention on what is happening. If you have ever been to any kind of big concert, play, show, something, it’s likely you have experienced that John saw here. There are millions of being present. They have been singing praises to God non stop. The sound must have been amazing. Then, it suddenly stops. It’s silent. Not for a few seconds, not for a minute, but for half an hour. Whether you are with a small group of people or you are in the midst of a huge crowd of people, total silence is a little unnerving. The silence seems loud. Your ears are actually straining to hear something. That’s actually a great thing. There are times to pray, and there are times to praise. But there are also times to be silent before the Lord. To be in awe of what it is He has done, is doing, and is about to do, as is the case here in Revelation 8. Take some time right now and try to sit silently before the Lord. Just try one minute. Think about Him and nothing else. It’s hard, I know. But it’s also very cool. I think you’ll find yourself that much more amazed by the Lord and His heart for and toward you.