Some Days Are Like That

A Stormy Day.

1 Samuel 30:6

New International Version

 David was greatly distressed because the men were talking of stoning him; each one was bitter in spirit because of his sons and daughters. But David found strength in the Lord his God.

For Meditation

His day started with an unusual rejection on the battleground at Aphek. The giant killer of Israel was going to fight his people alongside their archenemies, the Philistines. Was it a joke or what? But the Philistine lords would not have it. What if he turned on them and became a hero to Israel a second time?

Three days and nights of trekking back home, and David’s men reached Ziklag to the surprise of their lives – smoldering houses and ashes to welcome them. The men erupted with grief and deep sorrow. The Amalekites had made a sneak attack on the small town and taken their families captive (30:3-5), and you thought that was all of David’s problems.

Have you had your trusted friends or family members turn on you in your distress? David did not see that coming. He was hurting like all of his men for their families. He shared in their loss and pain, so why threaten to stone him? But humans will always be human. We must always find somebody to blame, and this time, David was the scapegoat.

“But David found strength in the Lord” (6).

Any wonder God calls him a man after His heart? Who else could he turn to but God Almighty?

“God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble” (Psalm 46:1).

He says,

Be still and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations; I will be exalted in all the earth” (10).

As you begin your week today, know that some days could be very trying and challenging—one trouble after the other. That most devastating blow may come when your colleague betrays you. Hang on, my friend! Just turn to the Lord Jesus Christ for comfort and encouragement. He will deliver you and give you victory for the Father’s glory. Amen!

Living Sacrificed

Romans 12:1-2

New International Version

Therefore, I urge you, brothers, and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.

For Meditation

Living as a holy sacrifice on the altar of God in response to all He has done for you—that is the proper and acceptable way for you to worship God through Christ Jesus (Romans 12:1).

How then can you, a true child of God, conform any longer to the practices and behaviors of this wicked world? Why is it difficult for you to allow the Holy Spirit to transform your life by renewing your mind about every issue of life? What should happen when your traditions and growing experiences come against the word of God?

Do this, and you will see how your perspective will change from worldly (temporal) to heavenly (eternal) settings (Colossians 3:1-3).

Think about it.

Shalom and pleasant weekend.

Living Crucified

Living Crucified

Galatians 2:20

New International Version

 I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

For Meditation

Jesus lived for the glory of the Father on earth. He did not seek applause, congratulations, or adoration from the crowds for Himself.

You, who “no longer live, but Christ Jesus lives in [you],” do you seek or live for them?

Think about it.

PRAYER:

Father, help me be humbled and remove myself from seeking attention, that you may increase before all people, everywhere I go. I pray this in the exalted name of Christ Jesus, my Risen Savior, and Lord. Amen!

WHEN GOD IS IN IT

Nehemiah 6:16

New International Version

When all our enemies heard about this, all the surrounding nations were afraid and lost their self-confidence, because they realized that this work had been done with the help of our God.

For Meditation

There is no project started and directed by God that does not face opposition. However, when we put our faith in the able hand of the Almighty, there is no person, power, system, or obstacle to stop the people of God. Nothing can stop the Spirit-filled, Spirit-led saint from accomplishing their divine calling or task.

Nehemiah faced tremendous opposition in the project to rebuild the Jerusalem wall from Sanballat and Tobiah. Although armed with their powerful weapons of mockery, intimidation, devious schemes, and political intrigues, they could not stop the project.

Think about it. The builders were a tired bunch of returnees from seventy years of the Babylonian exile. However, they overcame every challenge to complete the gigantic project in a record time of fifty-two days because God Almighty was in it.

Do not miss the power of prayer in the project, though. Repeatedly, Nehemiah threw himself into the hand of God in prayer. Burdened by the work and with faith to launch it, Nehemiah received such grace from God every time he lifted a passionate plea to Him in the face of opposition. In the same way, heaven will open up to you every time you raise your voice in prayer to the Lord about anything.

All God requires is an available instrument vessel with resilient faith and determination to glorify Him. There may be battles along the way and discouragement to overcome. The good news is that Christ Jesus has won the victory on Calvary, as confirmed by the empty grace displayed to the world.

In all your struggles and opposition, remember Paul’s words: “If God is for us, who can be against us (Rm. 8:31). None! “In all these things, we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us” (37). Two things are true, according to Gamaliel. If our purpose or activity is of human origin, it will fail.If it is from God, no one can stop us. They will only pitch themselves against God.

Shalom

Lost It All?

Luke 8:43-44

New King James Version

Now a woman, having a flow of blood for twelve years, who had spent all her livelihood on physicians and could not be healed by any, came from behind and touched the border of His garment. And immediately her flow of blood stopped.

For Meditation

Who would have known about her and the mighty hand of God in her life? How would you have seen God’s glory so bright in her face if Jesus had not stopped to unveil her story? All the miracleshealings, deliverances, fresh eyes to see, strengthened legs to walk, and restored life from the dead—they were all done to reveal the glory of the Father in Jesus. 

Could those Jesus forbid to tell anybody about the miracle He wrought in their lives keep them secret? How then could she slip away incognito after such great healing by the Lord? 

For twelve years, she had suffered from severe hemorrhaging. Twelve years of spending all of her money on doctors without a cure! Conscious of her frail body and her outcast status in the culture, she lived in seclusion. Hope had long died, and all she lived for was death—until the Master came to town. (Luke 8:40). 

Jairus was the first to engage Jesus for a house call for his twelve-year-old dying daughter (41-42). The journey to his house allowed the woman with the terminal bleeding condition to exercise her faith in Jesus and her last hope on earth. 

“If only I could touch the hem of His garment!”

Faith carries grace so magnificently to reveal the glory of Jesus in the life of the devastated soul. 

“If you are willing, you can make me clean.” 

“But say the word, and my servant will be healed.” 

“Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!” 

You know them all! You remember the supernatural power that worked in those people to reveal the glory of the Father in the face of Jesus. They all announced their joy publicly for our encouragement. His sovereignty ruled in every case for His glory.

So, never say God is too lofty to approach in prayer about your situation. Don’t believe the lie that says your sin is beyond His mercy and grace. Just reach out and touch Jesus in prayer today. And, get ready to shout His praise—declaring the glory of Jesus wherever you go, as a memorial and to His holy name. Amen!

Anxieux à propos de quelque chose ?

Juges 7:9-11 LSG

Si tu crains de descendre, descends au camp… tu écouteras ce qu’ils diront… [et] tes mains seront fortifiées. “

Pour méditation

Gédéon est un personnage biblique intéressant.

Cet homme avait peur. Il n’avait aucune confiance en lui et luttait avec sa commission. Lorsque Dieu l’a encouragé, Gédéon lui a donné une longue liste de raisons pour lesquelles il ne pouvait pas diriger Israël contre les Madianites. Il s’est déplacé sous le couvert de la nuit pour démolir l’autel de Baal de son père. Il a demandé un signe dans son célèbre décor de toison (Juges 6:11-40). Dieu étourdit Gédéon en passant son armée au crible et en la réduisant à trois cents hommes contre les Madianites (7:1-8). Après tout cela, Gédéon était anxieux la nuit précédant la guerre.

Dieu l’a tendrement poussé à continuer avec le dernier signe qui a scellé la foi de Gédéon (9-17). Il a envoyé Gédéon écouter la conversation de deux soldats madianites (9-11). Gédéon entendit le rêve de l’un d’eux et son interprétation qui assura à Gédéon une victoire éclatante.

N’oubliez jamais cela, mon ami. Dieu connaît vos moments d’angoisse, les moments où votre foi est mise à l’épreuve et où votre confiance faiblit ; ces moments où vos genoux se cognent et où les nuages vous empêchent de voir l’avenir. Dans ces moments-là, Dieu se tient aux côtés de ses enfants pour les rassurer et les encourager. Sa voix est plus douce, sa présence plus forte. Vous pouvez être sûr de cela, mon ami, en tant que son enfant fidèle.

Vous êtes peut-être comme Gédéon ce matin, incertain et anxieux à propos de beaucoup de choses. Faites confiance au Seigneur pour vous enseigner à travers cela, si vous vous tournez et confiez tout à Lui. Il dit dans Philippiens 4:6-7 : “Ne vous inquiétez de rien, mais en toute chose, faites connaître vos besoins à Dieu par des prières et les supplications, avec actions de grâces. Et la paix de Dieu, qui surpasse toute intelligence, gardera vos cœurs et vos pensées en Jésus-Christ.”

Vos moments d’anxiété pourraient conduire à une plus grande révélation de Dieu et de sa main providentielle dans votre vie. Alors, soyez prêts pour la surprise de votre vie lorsque Dieu agira cette semaine.

Shalom et bonjour

Anxious about Anything?

Judges 7:9-11 

New International Version (NIV)

If you are afraid to attack, go down to the camp … and listen to what they are saying … [and] be encouraged.”

For Meditation

Gideon is an interesting Bible character.

The man was afraid. He had zero self-confidence and struggled with his commission. When God encouraged him, Gideon gave God a long list of reasons he couldn’t lead Israel against the Midianites. He moved under cover of darkness to tear down his father’s altar to Baal. He asked for a sign in his famous fleece setting (Judges 6:11-40). God stunned Gideon by sifting his army and reducing them to three hundred men against the Midianites (7:1-8). After all this, Gideon was anxious the night before the war.

God tenderly prodded him on with the last sign that sealed Gideon’s faith (9-17). He sent Gideon to eavesdrop on a conversation of two Midianite soldiers (9-11). Gideon heard the dream of one of them and its interpretation that assured Gideon of a stunning victory.

Never forget this, my friend. God knows your anxious moments, the times when your faith gets tested, and your confidence wanes; those times when your knees are knocking and the clouds of doom have stunted your vision. God stands by His children at such times to assure and encourage them. His voice is sweeter—His Presence, overwhelming. This much, my friend, you can be sure of as His faithful child.

You may be like Gideon this morning—unsure and anxious about a lot of things. Trust the Lord to teach you through it if you turn and commit everything to Him. He says in Philippians 4:6-7: “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your request to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.”

Your anxious moments could lead to a greater revelation of God and His providential hand in your life. So, be ready for the surprise of your life when God moves this week.

The Apple of His Eyes

Psalm 17:8

New International Version

Keep me as the apple of your eye;
    hide me in the shadow of your wings.

For Your Encouragement

As Joseph was to Jacob, so I pray you will be to God this morning.

Jacob loved Joseph, the son of his beloved wife Rachel, more than any of his other sons (Genesis 37:3). He waited for this firstborn of Rachel for days on end, and finally, in his old age, Joseph was born (30:22-27). What a day that was! What a delight to Jacob’s heart. Finally, God had visited his beloved and given him a son to brighten his days on earth.

But now, his beloved wife was no more – a victim of a heart that would not detach from the gods of her father’s house—Rachel died while giving birth to her second son, Benjamin (31:34; 35:18). Who then could tear Joseph from the love of his father? To celebrate this extraordinary love for Joseph, Jacob made an ornate robe for him – a coat of many colors (37:3).

The other children hated Joseph for this preferential treatment, but how could he help it? He did not ask for it. He did not work for it either, and of course, Joseph could not pay for his father’s love. Jacob freely showered it on him. It was all grace.

That’s it for you and me, my friend – we who have received salvation from the Lord Jesus Christ. Our heavenly Father loves us so much that He has made a special covering of righteousness to adorn our lives—the garment of righteousness of His Son, Jesus Christ (1 Corinthians 1;30; Zechariah 3:4). The world may hate us for it, but we cannot help it. Though we did not deserve His love, God showered it on us (Romans 5:8). There was nothing we could have done to warrant it, and no work of ours could buy His love. It is all grace (Ephesians 2:8-9). How amazing it sounds!

Now you are the apple of God’s eye (Psalm 17:8), and nothing can separate you from His love—nothing! Not “trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword” (Romans 8:35).

The point we don’t have to miss about Joseph is that he honored his father’s love by living close to him enough to know the God of Abraham, Isaac, and, of course, Jacob—and he lived. The rest of his story flows from here.

So, as you celebrate the love of God for you through Christ Jesus, determine in your heart to honor that love by your distinguished life in Him, wearing His garment of righteousness with reverence and awe.

As for the hatred of the world and all satanic forces contending against you, do not worry. God will hide you under His mighty wings (Psalm 91:1-4).

Enjoy all His goodness and love; and may grace carry you with the joy of the Lord filling your heart. Amen.