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Knowing God

“My fl esh and my heart faileth; but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion forever.” (Psalm 73:25, KJV)God is the only happiness there is. He gave our ancestors, Adam and Eve, the choice to believe this or disbelieve it. They chose to disbelieve God and the result is as C. S. Lewis has written: “What Satan put into the heads of our remote ancestors was the idea that they could ‘be like gods’– could set up own their own as if they had created themselves – be their own masters – invent some sort of happiness for themselves outside God, apart from God. And out of that hopeless attempt has come nearly all that we call human history – money, poverty, ambition, war, prostitution, classes, empires, slavery – the long terrible story of man trying to fi nd something other than God which will make him happy.” God is the only happiness there ever will be. Asaph, the composer of Psalm 73, traveled through a dark and bitter experience on the way to discovering that God was his happiness and preferred portion. Bruised by the apparent unfairness of God in allowing the prosperity of the enemies of God and the suffering of the godly, Asaph did the wisest thing any of us can do. He humbled himself and sought help from God. He was shown truth beyond this life, the end of the wicked contrasted to the end of the righteous. He came to view God as his portion, his life, his everything forever. He came to the realization that God is the only happiness there is or ever will be. And God invites all of us to believe this. Pastor Jonathan Edwards (1703-1758) encourages us by reminding believers that although it is just a little of God that we may enjoy in our brief, uncertain pilgrimage in this dark world, God has promised us that hereafter we shall fully enjoy Him forever. And these promises are more precious to us than the most valuable earthly jewels. God is the only happiness there is and He has chosen every true believer to enjoy Him forever. Winston Churchill’s mother was an American by birth, Lady Randolph Churchill. She chose to be a central fi gure in fashionable society and saw little of her son during his childhood years. In his memoirs Churchill wrote about his mother, ‘She shone for me like the Evening Star. I loved her dearly – but at a distance.’ God, the only happiness there is and our affectionate and attentive heav-enly Father, never requires us to love Him from a distance. He is our portion, our happiness, our hope. We can draw as near to Him as we desire to be.

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