Archive for September, 2016
…so she said to Abram, “The Lord has kept me from having children. Go, sleep with my maidservant, perhaps I can build a family through her.” Abram agreed to what Sarai said. (Genesis 16:2)
It is difficult to wait on the Lord. And easy to get impatient and decide we can make a better plan than God. Do not. Trust God. His plans are better than yours.
“Son of man, these men have set up idols in their hearts and put wicked stumbling blocks before their faces.” (Ezekiel 14:3)
In Western society, few people openly set up idols to worship. Few bow before statues of stone or metal. But many have idols in their hearts, things that they secretly treasure more than God himself.
Things like family. Or a job. Patriotism. Political ideals. Money. Possessions. Fame. Power.
So many idols can be set up, most of which we don’t even recognize as idols. Make sure that God gets your whole heart, that nothing has been set up there to keep him from being your all in all.
Of course, the truth is that we are all sinners. But Jesus did come to find those who realize they need him. Sinners, not those who mistakenly believe they have it all together and depend on their own actions.
“So I commend the enjoyment of life, because nothing is better for a man under the sun than to eat and drink and be glad. Then joy will accompany him in his work all the days of the life God has given him under the sun.” (Ecclesiastes 8:15)
Sometimes Christians are afraid to enjoy themselves, as if having fun were somehow sinful. God made this world and gave us this life for us to enjoy. Eat! Drink! Be glad!
False pride comes from Satan. Do not brag on how big your church is. You will think it is something you are doing and not give God the glory that is his.
“But I will leave within you the meek and humble, who trust in the name of the LORD.” (Zephaniah 3:12)
Magazines regularly publish lists of the most powerful people, the most influential women, the most important men. Rest assured that God has a very different list. It’s filled with the names of the meek and the humble; it contains the names of those that trust in the Lord.
Instead, they had some points of dispute with him about their own religion and about a dead man named Jesus who Paul claimed was alive. (Acts 25:19)
This is the crux of the matter. Jesus died and we believe he is alive. That is message we proclaim to our friends and family. Jesus died and now he is alive.
“The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective. Elijah was a man just like us. He prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the land for three and a half years. Again he prayed, and the heavens gave rain, and the earth produced its crops.” (James 5:16–18)
Prayer works. Believe it!
They were delighted to hear this and promised to give him money. So he watched for an opportunity to hand him over. (Mark 14:11)
It is hard enough to avoid Satan’s traps to tempt us. It is a real danger sign when you find yourself looking for opportunities to sin. Be careful. Judas was not. Learn from his mistake.
“Whether it is favorable or unfavorable, we will obey the LORD our God, to whom we are sending you, so that it will go well with us, for we will obey the LORD our God.” (Jeremiah 42:6)
So many times when we pray to God, we say, “He hasn’t answered our prayer,” if we don’t get what we want. We need to recognize that God may say Yes or he may say No, and we have to be willing to accept either answer.