March - A New Beginning
When I started this blog it was March and now we are in April. All I can say is life happens. So enjoy your read as we hold on to March a little longer.
You may have heard the weather proverb, “If March comes in like a lion, it will go out like a lamb,” which means that if the month starts off stormy, it will end with mild weather. This year March has been a very confusing month. It started out very mild, spring like weather. The daffodils looked so beautiful in our field, hundreds of them all over. It felt like spring was here. Dandelions and little purple flowers danced in the breeze on our front yard. The birds were singing, and gentle winds blew across our faces. So I ask you how will March end now. It did not start out like a lion but a lamb. So will it end like a lion? On March 19 the day before spring as I was typing this blog it felt like the artic outside. The temperature was 23 degrees but it felt like 13 degrees and it was snowing. March 20th will be spring and our high will be 51 with a low of 28. Prayerfully it will soon feel like spring again.
March is said to be the start of new beginnings. With every sunset there is an opportunity to reset. And every sunrise begins with new eyes. The start of something new brings the hope of something great. Anything is possible if we allow God to guide us there, and you will know it’s time to start something, knowing and trusting He has you in the palm of His hand. Don’t be afraid of new beginnings because in life there is always a beginning, middle and an end. The good news is they are often followed by a new beginning.
I would like to challenge you in your journey with God to a new (or renewed) beginning in knowing Him. No matter what your relationship with God is, now, you can always strive to know Him better.
Ellen White tells us, “To know God is the most wonderful knowledge that men can have. There is much wisdom with worldly men; but with all their wisdom, they behold not the beauty and majesty, the justice and wisdom, the goodness and holiness of the Creator of all the worlds.”
She wrote in another place, “We need not know fanciful teachings regarding the personality of God. What God desire us to know of Him is revealed in His word and His works. The beautiful things of nature reveal His Character and His power as Creator. As we lay hold upon the truth of God, its influence must affect us. It must elevate us. It must remove from us every imperfection.”
In the Desire of Ages on page 22 an important truth is expressed: “To know God is to love Him.” Jeremiah 24:7 quotes the Lord saying, “I will give them a heart to know Me, that I Am the Lord. They will be My people, and I will be their God, for they will return to Me with all their heart.”
“A knowledge of God is the foundation of all true education and of all true service. It is the only real safeguard against temptation. It is this alone that can make us like God in character.” – The Ministry of Healing p.35
“When we know God as it is our privilege to know Him, our life will be a life of continual obedience. Through an appreciation of the character of Christ, through communion with God, sin will become hateful to us.” – Desire of Ages 668.3
But, how do we get to know Him?
Who’s your best friend? Is it your old college roommate, or a buddy from high school? Maybe you’re close with your cousin or uncle, or someone you grew up with. Whoever they are, think about them for a minute. When you first met, did you tell them everything about yourself? Probably not. So, how did you get to know each other? By talking, calling, texting, telling stories, working on a project together, playing games, and so on – simply spending time together. Because you spent loads of time together intentionally, a friendship developed as you grew to know each other. Is that, also, how it works with Jesus? Sure, you’ll spend time with Jesus differently than how you spend it with your “earthly” friends. It might even take some getting used to. But then your relationship will grow. You’ll talk—through prayer. You’ll learn stories—through the Bible. You’ll meet up in worship. Soon you’ll become so close you can’t wait to introduce him to your other friends.
Since we can’t physically see Jesus or hug Him or laugh with Him, we go to the stories that tell us who He was and what He was like. Think about your great-grandparent. You may not have gotten the chance to meet them in your life, but maybe your parents or grandparents tell stories of them. Maybe anytime someone spills sauce at the dinner table they laugh and say, “Doesn’t that remind you of Grandma?” Her memory is alive through the stories of your family members. With Jesus it’s similar, but even better. He’s still alive! He’s with us 24/7 through His Spirit, no matter where we are. That’s what the Bible teaches us. It tells of His life, death, and resurrection, and His love that motivated Him to become one of us, and be victorious over sin and death – for us!
There are so many miraculous stories of Jesus’s 33 years on earth. Tucked into those stories are the reports and descriptions that help us really get to know Him. They show us His personality, His compassion, His priorities. And He also showed us the Father. The Bible records Jesus talking about how much the Father values our lives, how He notices when each little sparrow falls to the ground, yet we “are of more value than many sparrows” Matthew 10:31. All throughout the Bible, even before Jesus’ earthly ministry, we read about God’s character and His will. We see how He lovingly created mankind, while he spoke everything else into existence, He got down in the dirt and formed man and breathed into his nostrils so that he became a living being, made in His image and likeness with the ability to related to Him in love.
Let me end with a few words from scripture about the importance of knowing God.
John 17:3 – “And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.”
Jeremiah 24:7 – “And I will give them an heart to know me, that I am the LORD: and they shall be my people, and I will be their God: for they shall return unto me with their whole heart.”
Jeremiah 9:24 – “But let him that glorieth glory in this, That he understandeth and knoweth me, That I am the LORD which exercise lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth: For in these things I delight, saith the LORD.”
P.S March went out like a lion!