“And there is none that calls upon Your Name, that stirs himself to take hold of You. . .”

Isaiah 64:7a

For it to happen, it must be intentional, intensive and incessant.

How sad are Isaiah’s words in today’s Manna, even though uttered and written over 2,700 years ago.  Even though directed toward his countrymen of Judah, things have not changed—for it would seem that “there are still none that call upon God’s Name or any that stir themselves to take hold of Him.”

It’s easy to think we’re one that does; but, do we really “call upon His Name” as a dying, desperate man would to a physician passing by?  Or, do we really “stir ourselves up to take hold of Him” like one whose resources are depleted and knows He’s our only Hope?

Let’s face it:

Few of us “travail in prayer” like a woman agonizing in childbirth pains.  No, our prayers are too often “short and sweet”. . .little ditties that sound good to the listening ear, but do nothing to move the heart (ours or His).  And, then we wonder why we never see any answered prayers.

Likewise, how many of us “stir ourselves up to take hold of God?”  We get all stirred up over things that don’t matter; yet, when it comes to “knowing Him and the Power of His Resurrection” (Phil. 3:10a), we’re too comfortable, complacent, callused and carnal.  And, if the truth be known, we’re also too cowardice—for who of us wants to really enter into “the fellowship of His sufferings, being made conformable to His death” (Phil. 3:10b)?

We know the answer, don’t we?

But, oh, dear Pilgrim, if we are to ever see “the Fire fall and the Glory fill” (II Chron. 7:1-3), we must make “calling upon His Name” our #1 priority and passion.  We cannot be content with bedtime “Now I lay me down to sleep” prayers or short, muffled prayers over a meal.  Instead, we must pray “fervent, effectual prayers” if we are to see God move in our midst (James 5:16).

And, this must be coupled with “stirring ourselves up to take hold of God.”  Just as a bed of coals will grow cold and finally go out without stirring, so will our passion for Christ and His Work grow colder and colder unless we “stir ourselves up.”  We can’t wait for the preacher to do it.  We can’t wait for the singer to do it.  We can’t wait for the television evangelist or Bible teacher to do it.

We must do it to ourselves!

We must allow the Holy Spirit to point out those areas of our lives (thoughts, words and deeds) that are displeasing to Him.  Then, we must get on our faces before Him and allow Him to convict us of our coldness and indifference until we hate those sins as much as He does.  Only then will we desperately want “to get hold of God” and feel like we can’t live unless we know He’s got hold of us!  May God forgive us for dry eyes that spring from dry hearts!  Help us, O Lord!  Rekindle within us those revival fires that once burned white hot.  “Create in us a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within us” (Ps. 51:10).

By Tom Smith Morning Manna Dated November 8, 2010

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