Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Stilling Ourselves in the Presence of Almighty God

I say to myself, "The LORD is my portion; therefore I will wait for him." 
Lamentations 3:24
Activity, activity, activity.  Our lives are filled with activity.  What are we striving to gain when we fill our lives with so much activity that we wear ourselves out?  God is calling out for us to still ourselves in His presence.  Our busyness and the things which we strive to gain through our busyness, draw our attention away from Almighty God.  It is time for us to step back and rest in the presence of our Savior and LORD. 

When we rest in the presence of God, we are able recognize and accept His sovereignty.  Deuteronomy 4:35 - You were shown these things so that you might know that the LORD is God; besides him there is no other.  We are able to focus on His character and His past faithfulness, which helps us to place our hope in His future faithfulness.  Deuteronomy 7:9 - Know therefore that the LORD your God is God; he is the faithful God, keeping his covenant of love to a thousand generations of those who love him and keep his commandments. 

Stilling ourselves in the presence of our Savior and LORD allows us to reflect on how thankful we are to our Heavenly Father.  Our hearts should be filled with gratitude because our LORD has set us free.  We are free from the bondage of sin.  We have been given the gift of eternal life.  God sent Jesus to die to for us, "while we were still sinner."  God loved us before we turned to Him.  Romans 5:8 - But God demonstrates his own love for us in this:  While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.  Our hearts should be overflowing with gratitude for the precious gift given to us by Almighty God.

Let's never forget to worship our Heavenly Father with a heart of gratitude. 
In the Book of Genesis, we see that when Adam and Eve accepted the sovereignty of Almighty God they experienced no worry, no selfishness, and no shame.  No violence, lies, or discord surrounded their lives.  They were in an obedient, grateful relationship with God and His authority over their lives.  God showered them with His blessings and His favor.  There came a time when they began to question God's authority and stepped out in disobedience to His sovereignty.  Because of their disobedience, they had to work harder in every area of their lives.  Our LORD honors humility.  James 4:6 - But he gives us more grace.  That is why Scripture says:  "God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble."  Humbly sit still in the presence of Almighty God.  Let's humbly submit to the boundaries our sovereign LORD has placed over our lives.  Priscilla Shirer states in her Bible study titled Breathe, "When God is honored, when His authority is kept in proper perspective, all the blessing and favor He intends to give His children become a part of their experience."  Humble yourselves, therefore, under God's mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time - 1 Peter 5:6

Still yourself in the presence of God.  Set aside space and time in your life to foster a holy intimacy with your Savior and LORD.  We will never regret spending time in the presence of Almighty God.

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for Your saving grace.  I pray that we will still ourselves in Your presence.  Refresh us precious LORD.  In Jesus Name I Pray.....Amen.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Teaching the Next Generation

After that whole generation had been gathered to their ancestors, another generation grew up who knew neither the LORD nor what he had done for Israel.  Judges 2:1


It is alarming to think that there may come a day when a generation of people will not know Jesus Christ or even have heard His name.  Our nation has strayed far from God.  We may blame this on many things, but we as Christians have failed to teach the younger generation to love God.  We have failed to teach God’s Word.  Christian families must rise up and teach their children to love and follow Almighty God.  Churches have the responsibility to teach God’s Holy Word instead of offering entertainment.

Someone will teach the younger generation.  If we do not take upon ourselves our God given responsibility of teaching our children in the ways of the LORD, the world will.  The world will teach them that forms of ungodliness are acceptable.  The world will teach them that the ways of God are too strict and unacceptable today.  The world will teach them, as they walk straight into the fiery pit of hell. 

As Christians living in an ungodly world, we must teach the younger generation to love God and to live each day by the guidelines and principles found in His Holy Word.  We have to teach His Word, not our opinions or what we believe or feel.  God’s Word is filled with eternal truths that our children and grandchildren need to hear from someone who loves them dearly.  How often do you read and share God’s Word with those you love, with those in your sphere of influence?  If you want your children to follow God, you must make God a part of your everyday life.  You must teach your children diligently to see God in all aspects of life, not just those that are church related.  Deuteronomy 6:5-7 – Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.  These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts.  Impress them on your children.  Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. 


Believing in Jesus Christ as our Savior and LORD is the only way to Heaven.  He alone died for our sins and will make us right before God.  Living this way may not be popular, but it is true and right.  The world will teach our children that there are many ways to Heaven, just choose one.  Rise up parents, rise up churches.  Let’s get back to teaching God’s Holy Word and the truth found in Scripture.  John 14:6 – Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through me.”


Let’s choose today to teach and share God’s Word.  Let’s teach this generation the importance of prayer.  Let’s raise up a generation to be spiritual warriors for Almighty God. 


Dear Heavenly Father, forgive us for neglecting to teach the younger generation about You.  Help us teach Your Holy Word.  Empower us to teach our children and grandchildren to love You LORD and to follow Your ways. 





Tuesday, May 12, 2015

The Multiplication Factor

Remember this:  Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously.  2 Corinthians 9:6


We often feel as if we don't have much to give God, to offer to our Heavenly Father.  God is not looking at the amount we have to give, to offer.  He is looking at our heart, our willingness to give what we possess.  When we give all we have, God will multiply our gift and He will receive all honor, glory, and praise.  Are you willing to freely give to God today? 


We read in John 6 about a young boy who gave to Jesus five small barely loaves and two small fish.  When placed in the hands of Jesus Christ, these five loaves of bread and two small fish fed the five thousand.  The boy willingly gave what little he had that day.  Are you willing to give what little you have and allow God to take what you consider a little gift and turn it into something great? 


The task of feeding the five thousand seemed impossible with such a small amount of food, but God did the impossible.  He took the small gift and multiplied the food so that the five thousand were feed and there were also twelve basketfuls of broken pieces of bread and fish left over.  God desires for us to give willingly and allow Him to provide the results.  We are called to be obedient to our LORD, not successful. 


What we give to our Savior and LORD may seem insufficient, but in His hands it is more than enough.  Jesus can use and multiply whatever we give Him.  Choose today to give your talent, time, and your treasure to Almighty God and watch and see the multiplication miracle take place as the Gospel Message is shared and lost souls are saved. 


God calls us to give generously.  We are called to respond to the needs of others.  Are we willing to give without a grudging heart and allow Him to multiply whatever it is we give and meet the needs of others.  Deuteronomy 15:10 - Give generously to them and do so without a grudging heart; then because of this the LORD your God will bless you in all your work and in everything you put your hand to. 


When we choose to freely give to our God our time, possessions, and energy, we will be blessed.  Everything we have was given to us by our God to be used to help others.  Whether a little or a lot, freely give it back to God.  Proverbs 11:24-25 - One person gives freely; yet gains even more; another withholds unduly, but comes to poverty.  A generous person will prosper; whoever refreshes others will be refreshed. 


God desires for us to freely give.  Let's choose today to give whatever we have to our God and allow Him to multiply our gift to be used for His eternal glory. 


Dear Heavenly Father, help us to truly understand that what we have belongs to You.  Whether we have a little or a lot, place a desire in us to give generously.  Multiply our gift and allow us to see You perform miracles.  In Jesus Name I Pray.....Amen.




Monday, May 4, 2015

Lessons from the Life of Noah

This is the account of Noah and his family.  Noah was a righteous man, blameless among the people of his time, and he walked faithfully with God.  Genesis 6:9


God's Word is filled with men and women of faith.  We can take a look at their lives and glean how we can live a life that will bring honor and glory to our Savior and LORD.  They leave us an example that we can find encouraging and applicable as we journey towards our Heavenly Home.  Just as their lives had an eternal impact, so will our lives have an eternal impact.  Let's take a look in the Book of Genesis and see what we can learn from Noah.


Noah lived in a time of great wickedness.  Genesis 6:5 - The LORD saw how great the wickedness of the human race had become on the earth, and that every inclination of the thoughts of the human heart was only evil all the time.  The earth Almighty God had created was no longer the perfect paradise that God intended.  I think we can all agree, we too are living in times where there is great corruption and violence.  Our world is filled with wickedness and evil. 


Reading in Genesis 6, we see only one man and his family who worshiped God.  That man was Noah.  The study of Scripture reveals that Noah was a man of patience, consistency, and obedience.  Genesis 6:9 tells us that Noah "walked faithfully with God."   Even surrounded by wickedness, Noah walked step by step in faith as a living example to his generation.  Like Noah, you and I live in a world surrounded by evil and unbelief.  Are we walking faithfully with our Savior and LORD or have we allowed this evil world to influence us?  Choose today to be a godly influence in this world.  You will stand out, as Noah did, and Almighty God will receive all the honor, glory, and praise. 


Genesis 6:9 tells us that Noah was "blameless among the people of his time."  Noah was a man of integrity.  He refused to enter into the excesses of his contemporaries.  As children of Almighty God, we must be people of integrity.


Scripture also reveals to us that Noah was obedient to Almighty God.  When God revealed to Noah what He was going to do (Genesis 6:13 – So God said to Noah, “I am going to put an end to all people, for the earth is filled with violence because of them.  I am surely gong to destroy both them and the earth.”) and gave instructions to Noah in regards to building the ark, Noah was obedient.  Genesis 6:22 - Noah did everything just as God commanded Him.  He may not have fully understood - an ark had never been built before, rain had never fallen upon the earth, but Noah chose to obey God.  There will be times when God does not give us the whole picture.  We are still called to step out in obedience just as Noah did. 


Noah's obedience to God didn't benefit just him.  It also saved his family.  Genesis 7:1 - Go into the ark, you and your whole family, because I have found you righteous in this generation.  When we live a life of obedience to Almighty God, it always has potential to positively impact others. 


Let's choose today to follow Noah's example.  Be faithful to your Savior and LORD and the calling He has placed upon your life.  Live a life of integrity.  And be obedient to Almighty God.


Dear Heavenly Father, I pray we strive to live lives that will bring You honor, glory, and praise.  Empower us LORD to be faithful and obedient.  In Jesus Name I Pray.....Amen.