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Unconditional Surrender!
Christian Devotional by Pastor Cecil Thompson

Cecil Thompson

Habakkuk 3:17-19

"Though the fig tree may not blossom, nor fruit be on the vines; though the labor of the olive may fail, and the fields yield no food; though the flock may be cut off from the fold, and there be no herd in the stalls—yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will joy in the God of my salvation. The LORD God is my strength; He will make my feet like deer’s feet, and He will make me walk on my high hills."

Several years ago there was a commercial on television, extolling the qualities of a particular brand of margarine. It supposedly was so much like butter that it could even fool "Mother Nature." The announcer offered a woman (supposedly "Mother Nature") a muffin spread with this margarine. She was so pleased with her pure butter. When he informed her that it was not butter, there was a flash of lightning, a clap of thunder and a scowl on the woman's face. She snarled out, "It's not nice to fool Mother Nature."

That commercial always bugged me. Where in the world did we develop the concept of "Mother Nature"? It is certainly not from God's Word. As we see in today's Scripture, our Lord was the creative force of the heavens and earth, not some humanly contrived "Mother Nature."

It seems that mankind has always tried to bargain with God, explain God away, ignore God or basically in one way or another rebel against God. It is amazing that the One who created all things---including us---loves us enough to put up with our nonsense as long as He does.

In 1944, the latter days of WWII, a young couple fell in love. He was an airman and knew that he may soon be leaving for an overseas assignment. They determined that they would be married and have as much time together as possible. Almost immediately, he was shipped out to Europe as a co-pilot on a B-24. On his very first mission, he was shot down over German territory and spent the next year in a Prisoner of War camp.

Back home, his new bride received word that he was missing in action. The grieving wife reported that she prayed and made a bargain with God. If He spared her husband, she would serve Him the rest of her life. She told a reporter that she had kept that vow and attended church each week as a result.

That may sound good, but it is bad reasoning. It is good for us to remember the three Hebrews (Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego) standing between an enraged king and a super-heated furnace. All they had to do was bow down and worship the image of King Nebuchadnezzar and they would go free. No way!

They had faith that their Lord could save them even in such a "hot spot," but even if He didn't, yet they would still trust Him, and not bow down to the image.

That is the kind of love, trust and faith that God finds pleasing in His sight---unconditional love. A love of God with no strings attached. We are to serve Him without reservations or conditions.

As we read today's Scripture, we see that the Lord is faithful---even when His people stray away from Him. It has been said that He is the God of the second chance. One thing is certain---the Lord will be [our] rock and strong defense when we place our complete trust in Him!

We may not know what lies ahead for us, but we know that the Lord will be with us at all times! We can relax and trust Him to care for all of our troubles, not "IF" He does what we desire Him to do, (that is dictating to God); but even though we cannot see what the outcome will be, "YET" we will place all of our confidence in Him. He will do right!

Blessings dear hearts. Walk with God today, trust Him completely and be a blessing.

--- Pastor Cecil


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