A Heart Like Enoch!

2 Chron 16v9

A few years ago, buried in a rambling geneology in Genesis 5, I discovered Enoch.

Enoch lived sixty-five years and became the father of Methuselah, and he had other sons and daughters.  So all the days of Enoch were three hundred and sixty-five years….

This is pretty much the standard pattern for a biblical genealogy:

  • The name of the father
  • The number of years they lived before the birth of their first born son.
  • The name of their first born son
  • The total number of years they lived.

Job done and on it goes – each record ending with the dismal words:

“And he died.”

Deep joy.

But wait a minute.  There’s something different about Enoch’s account…have you ever noticed it?  It’s in verse 24:

Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him.

Excuse me, can you say that again?

Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him.

There’s nothing here about anyone dying.  Enoch simply “was not”.  He was here one moment, gone the next!  The footnotes in my bible suggest that Enoch did not taste death, but went straight to heaven to be with God!  Wow!

So what did he do differently?  Well, the only clue that we’re given is that “He walked with God.”

We were created to walk and talk with God, just as Adam and Eve did before the fall.

I felt so stirred when I read this!

Enoch must have pleased God’s heart so much, that he just kind of by-passed death.  I cant say I fully understand what happened to Enoch – and I don’t think I’m meant to.  Because that’s not the point of the story.  I think the main lesson to be learned, is that God really wants our company.

My relationship with God is meant to be the MAIN THING in my life.  It’s not some kind of added extra –   Oh Hi, I’m Angie, I’ve got red hair and green eyes and I’m married to Nathan…oh and I’m a Christian – no way!   That’s settling for something far less than what’s on offer.

God is there to be experienced!  We can walk and talk with Him…like Enoch did.  We can encounter the Living God.  What are we waiting for?   Like David, I want my heart’s cry to be this:

One thing I have asked from the Lord, that I shall seek; that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord, and to meditate in His temple – Psalm 27:4

God is after our hearts.  I believe in these dark days, He is calling us to come up higher – to climb the mountain of His presence.  And where else would I rather be, when one day in His courts is better than a thousand elsewhere…?

Chronicles 16:9 says that “The eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the earth, seeking those whose hearts are fully committed to Him.

The pure in heart shall see God.  Those whose have a heart like Enoch!

 

 

 

 

Forget-Me-Not

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There are so many things to remember these days!

“Have you got your key?”

“Mum, did you remember to pay for my school trip?”

“Did you remember there’s a meeting this evening?”

“Don’t forget your P.E. Kit!”

“I must remember to take those library books back on Tuesday.”

“Don’t forget your packed lunch bag!”

Sound familiar?

Just last week, I fell prey to absent-mindedness on a number of occasions!  On Monday I filled in some important forms for my daughter’s new school.  I put them by the front door so that I wouldn’t forget them the next day…and then on Tuesday, I managed to leave the house without them! On Wednesday, I popped into the shop and bought a few groceries…but came home without the milk.  On Friday, I took my car into the garage, walked all the way back home, only to discover that I’d forgotten to take my door key off the car key-ring.

You know that old saying:  “You’d forget your head if it wasn’t screwed on”…well, that pretty much sums me up!

And here we are again, heading towards November – the month of remembrance.  Soon we’ll be buying red poppies and taking part in two minute silences.  Lest we forget…

A few days ago, I stumbled across an interesting verse in the book of Judges:

The sons of Israel did what was evil in the sight of God, and forgot the Lord their God and served the Baals and the Asheroth.” (Judges 3: 7)

Hang on a minute…back up the truck….I thought doing evil in the sight of God would entail murder or betrayal or deepest, darkest deception.  What did the sons of Israel do that was so offensive to God?  They forgot Him.

God has always wanted a people who will love Him and serve Him with wholehearted devotion.  And the truth is, He’s worthy of nothing less.

“Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart and with all thy soul and with all thy mind…”

But the Sons of Israel ‘forgot’ Him.  They forgot the God who had brought them up out of Egypt.  Split open the Red Sea so they could walk though on dry land.  Provided Manna from heaven and water from a rock.  Who knows what distractions may have lured their affections away?  But I would hazard a guess that it was a gradual slide.  Perhaps they gradually stopped talking about Him quite so often – stopped remembering the miracles.  Perhaps they stopped being thankful.  Perhaps they got too busy trying to pay the bills.  But somehow, their hearts drifted away from their first love.  And it wasn’t long before they were serving Baal and Asheroth – worshipping idols.  How tragic.

The word ‘remember’ comes from the Latin root ‘mem’, which means ‘call to mind’ or ‘be mindful of’. So many words that we use in our everyday language stem from this root:  Memento, memoir, memorandum, memorabilia.  All of these things are designed to prompt our memory.  They remind us of important things, or preserve special memories.  But what can we do to remind ourselves of the One who is more important than any other treasure?

David had the right idea – In Psalm 103, we see an example of him “calling to mind” the goodness of the Lord:

“Bless the Lord, O my soul,

And  forget none of His benefits,

Who pardons all your iniquities,

Who heals all your diseases,

Who redeems your life from the pit,

Who crowns you with loving-kindness and compassion,

Who satisfies your years with good things,

So that your youth is renewed like the eagle.”

It seems to me that remembering the Lord is not some hit and miss thing, like it so often is with things like milk and car keys.  We must choose to remember.  We need to keep calling to mind the goodness of our God.  We need to constantly remind ourselves of His past mercies and all of His faithfulness.  It’s a deliberate thing.

Jesus made this clear to us on the night before he died.

And when He had taken some bread and given thanks, He broke it and gave it to them saying: “this is my body which is given for you, do this in remembrance of Me.” (Luke 22:19).

If there’s only one truth that we choose to remember in this lifetime, surely it should be this one:  That Jesus Christ, the Son of the Most High God, laid down His life, so that we might live.  Let’s never forget.