When God Speaks – Part 3

tree of knowledge

 

The third place we find God speaking to his children is in Genesis 3 beginning at verse 9. Here he is calling out to Adam, “Where are you?”  Knowing full well where Adam was located, he wanted Adam to attest to the facts, giving voice to his new reality: I heard you in the garden; I was afraid; I was naked; I hid.

 

And then the interchange between God and man is fascinating to watch unfold. Through the use of questions, God inquires of Adam’s heart. Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree I commanded you not to eat from? And to the woman: What is this you have done? Following their answers, God spells out the consequences with specificity and clarity.

 

The bottom line is that the very first man and woman to walk planet earth chose early on to listen to their tempter’s and one another’s voice rather than God’s voice. God spoke with incredible clarity. There was no mincing words from God to his children, either on the front end of direction or the back end of judgment.

 

Speaking out that which has defiled your heart and tempted your will against the clear voice and commandments of the Lord leads us into sin. We don’t generally like the word sin today; it simply seems too harsh in a non-judgmental world. But, the fact of the matter is “we all sin and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). No one is exempt, for no one since Adam and Eve is living a sinless existence.

 

Therefore, what will be your response to your propensity to sin, even today? Will you own your fear, nakedness, and desire to hide from the ever-present reality of God? Will you choose to give voice to your disobedience and your succumbing to the tempter’s voice instead? Because of the Second Adam, Jesus Christ, we no longer have to fear the harsh retribution of God. In Christ, our sins are forgiven, tossed on the dung heap, and remembered no more.

 

May your prayers today be as simple as, “Lord, have mercy on me, a sinner…” and “Create in me a pure heart, O God” so that you can be “forgiven and set free to forgive another” – in Jesus’ name and for his glory. Amen.

 

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Steve Macchia

Founder & President

The Rev. Dr. Stephen A. Macchia is founder and president of Leadership Transformations, Inc. (LTI), a ministry serving the spiritual formation, discernment, and renewal of leaders and learners since 2003. For more than 20 years he has been the Director of the Pierce Center for Disciple-Building at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, where he also serves as an adjunct faculty member in the Doctor of Ministry Program. From 1989-2003 he was the president of Vision New England, the largest regional church renewal association in the country. Earlier in his ministry life, Steve was a member of the pastoral staff of Grace Chapel in Lexington, Massachusetts for 11 years. He is the author or co-author of 17 books, including The Discerning Life (Zondervan Reflective), and Crafting a Rule of Life, Becoming A Healthy Church (LTI), and Broken and Whole (IVP).  He and his wife Ruth live in the Boston (MA) area and are the proud parents of two married children and grandparents to three adorable grandchildren. Steve’s personal website is www.SteveMacchia.com.

My soul comes alive singing the great hymns of the church and enjoying the beauty of God’s creation. I’m in awe of God for fulfilling the dream for LTI that he birthed in my heart, for the team he has assembled, and the transformational impact experienced in the leaders and teams we serve.

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Mitzi Mak

Selah-West Faculty

Mitzi started her professional life as a high school social studies teacher. She and her husband Jerry then served cross-culturally for ten+ years, living abroad first in India and then Kurdistan, N. Iraq. In addition to being a Spiritual Director, she now serves as a Formation and Care pastor in her local church in Houston, TX. She has graduated from LTI’s Selah Spiritual Direction training as well as LTI’s Emmaus Formational Leadership Program.

Mitzi enjoys engaging conversation, reading fiction, doing jigsaw/crossword puzzles, ocean gazing and exploring the world with Jerry through food and travel.

God has two main callings in Mitzi’s life: to care for those who care for others and to be a guide in helping others have a healthy relationship with the Trinity – recognizing God’s loving presence and activity in their lives and how to faithfully respond.

Selah was a transformative experience for me – allowing the contemplative within to emerge and to beautifully co-exist with my extraverted personality.