Archive for April, 2016
The earth is to keep silent before the Lord in terms of respect. No boasting. No foolish accusations against God. No murmuring nor complaints.
We would be respectful in the presence of a powerful person; how much more should we show honor and respect to God.
This is the account of the heavens and the earth when they were created. When the Lord God made the earth and the heavens — (Genesis 2:4)
God is creator, not created. He made this world a perfect creation. Sin ruined it. God will make it right someday.
“He who heeds discipline shows the way to life, but whoever ignores correction leads others astray.” (Proverbs 10:17)
Are you open to correction? Do you allow others to point out your failings? Can you be honest enough to admit a need for change when you see things in the Bible that challenge you?
Pretending to be perfect will never get you where you are going. You won’t just hurt yourself; you’ll hurt others as well.
Make it your goal to be ever improving, always open to change, constantly listening to the things God wants to show you.
“I tell you the truth, if anyone says to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea, and does not doubt in his heart but believes that what he says will happen, it will be done for him. (Mark 11:23)
Believe. Do not doubt. Ask. Receive.
“Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God.” (Colossians 3:16)
Does God’s word live in you? Does your speech reflect what is written in the Bible? Do spiritual phrases and terms occur naturally in you speech?
If not, let me encourage you to spend more time reading and reflecting on Scripture, letting its thoughts and ideas permeate your life.
God does see and know what is happening in our lives. He cares. And he will act for our good.
There are times when your entire world is turned upside down. Times when the pain is unbearable and the future seems unfathomable. When God did not answer your prayer and you wonder if he even heard your cries. Events that change your life forever. The things that make tomorrow an impossible dream. And one of the worst of these is the death of a child. It does not seem to matter if they die in the womb or as adults in an accident. Death strikes at any age. And parents have to bury children.
Nothing will ever be the same. Questions fill your every waking hour. How will I ever go on? How can I face tomorrow… and the day after that … and the day after that? Why did my child die? Why are other children spared? Where was God? Where is my child? What did I do to deserve this? So many questions and so few answers. Having dealt with far too many families in situations like this, I have learned that I do not have the wisdom to give answers.
But I do think I know where there is an answer. God speaks into our lives through a story in the Bible. It is the story of when King David and Bathsheba lost their infant child. David fasted, prayed, and pleaded with God to heal his sick child. Probably begging God not to hold his sin of adultery against the child. But the baby died. So David got up, cleaned up, and ate. He went on with life. When asked how that was possible, he said that the baby was not coming back to him… but that he could go to where his child was.
So here are three things that are certain.
- You are not the only one to experience this. It is a world where death happens and evil exists. God does not always do what we want. I do not know why because I am not God. And that is a good thing because there has to be someone bigger and stronger than me in control. So God’s people chose to believe in spite of the pain.
- Life goes on. You may want it to stop. You may even wish that it would, but it will not. So those of us in God’s family keep on living. One foot in front of the other, one day at a time … because we believe.
- This is not the end. Christians know that we will see our children again. Death is not the end. It is only final for the short time we are on this earth. It is not final forever.
So if you have wondered where answers are when there seem to be no answers… listen to God. If you want to live through the darkest night imaginable… hold on to faith in God. If you want to live forever with your children… believe in Jesus.
“We will not hide them from their children; we will tell the next generation the praiseworthy deeds of the LORD, his power, and the wonders he has done.” (Psalms 78:4)
We are responsible for letting our children and grandchildren know the great things that God has done. We shouldn’t put that on the preacher, the Sunday school teacher, or anyone else. We need to speak to our families about our faith.
He replied, “My mother and brothers are those who hear God’s word and put it into practice.” (Luke 8:21)
Christians really are part of a big family. You have parents, kids, siblings in the family of God. So love each other as family. Serve, help, and do life together. As family.
“Shout and be glad, O Daughter of Zion. For I am coming, and I will live among you,” declares the LORD. (Zechariah 2:10)
What a wondrous thing, to have the living God live in your midst. This was an exciting promise for God’s people.
Today we have an even more exciting promise… when by faith we are baptized into Christ, God comes to live in our hearts. Shout and be glad!