Remember also your Creator in the days of your youth, before the evil days come and the years draw near when you will say, “I have no delight in them.”
How do you choose intimacy with God over isolation from God?
First, realize that true fulfillment is impossible apart from God. Nothing will block intimacy more than divided affections. For example, if I am trying to build an intimate relationship with my wife, Amy, and yet I’m carrying on with some other woman at the same time, will that affect my intimacy with my wife? Of course it will. The truth is, we build our life around one thing, not many things. Jesus said that in Matthew 6:24: “No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and wealth.” The fact is, if you are under the illusion that a certain position, a certain amount of possessions, or certain amount of prestige or pleasure will really provide the fulfillment you need in life, you can’t be intimate with God and serving Him at the same time you are pursing those other things. You are going to build your life around whatever you think is going to satisfy your deepest needs, and that means if you want to have intimacy with God, you have to come to the place where you realize you can’t be fulfilled any other way.
Second, honestly evaluate your relationship with God. What is the center of your affections? What are you building your life around: the temporary or the eternal? A good way to evaluate your heart is to ask yourself, “How would I respond if suddenly I lost all my material possessions, my most important relationships, my health? Would my life spin out of control?” There was a person who actually experienced all of that in a very short amount of time. His name was Job, and we find his story in the Old Testament. Obviously, Job was heartbroken after he lost his children in a freak windstorm, after all his possessions were taken from him, and after he began to lose his health, but it didn’t undo his life. Job 1:20-22 says, “Job arose and tore his robe and shaved his head, and he fell to the ground and worshiped. He said, ‘Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I shall return there. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away. Blessed be the name of the Lord.’ Through all this Job did not sin nor did he blame God.” Job’s life was built around something more than what could be taken away from him. Is yours?
What a contrast Job is to Solomon. In the twelfth chapter of Ecclesiastes, we see an old man whose life was beginning to unravel. Solomon’s health was breaking down. Not only that, his power as king had been diminished. His wealth had been passed on to another. Even his wisdom was being called into question. As he came to the end of his life, Solomon said, “Remember also your Creator in the days of your youth, before the evil days come and the years draw near when you will say, ‘I have no delight in them’” (v. 1). In other words, “Don’t make the same mistake I did. Remember your Creator in the days of your youth.”
Today’s devotion is excerpted from “Choosing Companionship over Loneliness” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2019.
Scripture quotations are taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.