Practical Christianity

Zephaniah 3 / Psalm 20

By Sarah Mack

Before we begin to dive into the meat, in verse 2 of Zephaniah 3 the Word of God says to “trust in the lord” Ah ha moment! Maybe easier said than done! And to “draw near to [our] God.” First, put all those things that you’ve been holding onto in His hands and release it. Allow Him to take it all and trust Him. Now hold your hands up in representation that you are open and free to receive from Him. Now listen for His promptings, rest and feel his presence. In this next portion we’ll look at some practical examples that are given for those who are saved as well as those trying to understand what being a Christian means.

What does the Lord want to do in people’s lives? The lord wants to give people purified lips (vs. 9) he purifies our language, or hearts and our minds. Oh how little we have to do with salvation. It’s truly a gift! If we haven’t taken his free gift, ask Jesus to purify your lips and give you a new heart. He will do the work in you and unite you to the body of believers.

How are we to serve? God’s divine order is for his servants to (vs. 9) “serve Him shoulder to shoulder.” I believe this is in sacrifice, in worship, in doing life. I imagine soldiers of the King shoulder to shoulder, back to back; people in a human barricade, people advancing against the enemy. Are we not stronger together? More able to fight not only to protect ourselves, but to fight for gaining kingdom ground together? I believe this is why the enemy wants us fighting each other. If he can get us to be offended, angry, and even just distanced then the enemy makes an easy target of us. We give him ground to attack and conquer. Lord forgive us for allowing this! Help us to live shoulder to shoulder Christianity!

What place does pride have in Kingdom people? The proud will be removed. “For then I will remove from your midst Your proud, exulting ones,” (vs. 11). Our pride WILL be moved. It’s either now or later. Do we want it to be in surrender to Him for His glory now or removal at the judgement when we’re sent away from His presence? This isn’t a condemnation on any one of us because we all have pride and the Lord is working on it in different levels for each of us. I need the lord more today than I did yesterday and I’m more aware of my need now.

The refiner creates a new heart. “But I will leave among you A humble and lowly people, And they will take refuge in the name of the Lord” (vs. 12). This is the result of something created in us by the Spirit that isn’t natural on our own. Humility and obedience go hand in hand. I don't know about you, but I need more of this lowly selflessness. We need you Jesus! Forgive us, heal us, send your spirit to comfort and breathe life in us.

Victory in the Lord (vs. 14, 15, 17). “Shout for joy, Shout in triumph, Rejoice... with all your heart, “The Lord has taken away His judgments against you, He has cleared away your enemies” “The Lord your God is in your midst, A victorious warrior.... He will rejoice over you with shouts of joy.” Notice that not only do we find joy in the Lord, but He also finds joy in us. We are His children! Do we allow the realization that the creator finds joy in us to sink in? How many times have you thought the lord is angry at me or I've failed? Yes, there is anger for the wicked, and even consequences for sin, but for those that humble themselves and walk with Him in his forgiveness: He Delights in YOU! Let us live not in condemnation of ourselves or others, but in shoulder to shoulder victory because we are Christian warriors!

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