Saturday, August 31, 2019

He Remains the Same...

"In the beginning you laid the foundations of the earth, and the heavens are the work of your hands. They will perish, but you remain; they will all wear out like a garment. Like clothing you will change them and they will be discarded. But you remain the same, and your years will never end." -- Psalm 102:25-27
It's sad to watch age take its toll on loved ones. As the years pass their strength of body and clarity of mind slowly slip away. Ability gives way to disability. The aging process wears out everything and everyone, so what can we depend on or to whom can we turn? 
It has been said there are two things that everyone must face: Taxes and death. Along with this the Psalmist tells us, while the foundations of the earth and the heavens are God's work, they too will perish. Yet, we are encouraged with the fact that the Lord remains the same and his years will never end. He is dependable. 
You can be discouraged by the changes in life that rob your energy and strength. Or you can lean on someone who remains the same throughout this life into the next. Why not turn to the Lord from day to day and find strength for your journey?

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Friday, August 30, 2019

Maker and Keeper...

"Come, let us bow down in worship, let us kneel before the LORD our Maker; for he is our God and we are the people of his pasture, the flock under his care." -- Psalm 95:6-7

I remember the various occasions that we purchased a new car. When we received the keys a long process came to an end. The designer and the assembly line workers had finished their jobs. They were all part of making the vehicle. Now it was up to us to keep the car in good road worthy condition. They were the makers and my wife and I became the keepers.
The psalmist saw things in a very different light when he considered himself and the Lord. We have one Creator and Shepherd. As Paul put it in Acts 17:28, "For in him we live and move and have our being." or as we read in the Augsburg Confession, "God... the maker and preserver of all things" The Lord is both our maker and keeper.
Do you often find yourself thinking that once you left the womb you were on your own? Yes, the Lord calls us to a great deal of accountability, but remember, "The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not be in want" (Psalm 23:1)  If that is so, Why not worship and trust Him today, not only as your Maker, but your Keeper?


Thursday, August 29, 2019

Our Dwelling Place...

"Lord, you have been our dwelling place throughout all generations. Before the mountains were born or you brought forth the earth and the world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God." -- Psalm 90:1-2 
While growing up our family lived in six different places. Since high school I have lived in ten different locations. Some of those living quarters are no longer standing and some have drastically changed. One might fairly ask, "Where is my dwelling place?"
Moses shared a similar experience. He moved all over the Middle East during his lifetime. He lived in the Pharaoh's court as well as in a tent. After the Exodus he moved more times than anyone could count. But, Moses was always secure and settled because the Lord was always his "Dwelling Place".
It doesn't matter how many times you've moved or how much change has been experienced, my friend. Your God who has been the same from before the mountains were born. From age to age and from place to place, you can be secure and settled in life, when the Lord is your "Dwelling Place"


Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Undivided...

"Teach me your way, O LORD, and I will walk in your truth; give me an undivided heart, that I may fear your name." -- Psalm 86:11
Some of the most notorious criminals in history have been "double agent" spies. They spy for two countries but they are loyal to neither one. These people play two ends to the middle and ultimately do more harm than good. They have divided hearts.
The psalmist asked to be taught the ways of the Lord so he would walk in God's truth. Yet, he knew that knowledge is only as good as the hearts devotion. As a spy has more than knowledge than most, if the heart is divided, the value of that knowledge is lost. Therefore, psalmist prayed for an "undivided heart".
To whom do you devote your heart my friend? Jesus taught that you can't serve two masters (Matthew 6:24) and James noted that your prayers should be made without doubt (James 1:6). As much as you desire to walk in the ways of the Lord, don't forget your heart, for it's the wellspring of life (Proverbs 4:23).


Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Never turn back...

"But my people would not listen to me; Israel would not submit to me. So I gave them over to their stubborn hearts to follow their own devices." -- Psalm 81:11-12
I remember the day I bought my first motorcycle. The guy who owned the dealership gave me wise counsel for riding. His last words were, "The day you become so sure of yourself that you lose all caution, sell the bike". That day came, and I didn't sell the bike. Instead I went to the hospital with broken bones. Turning your back on wise counsel can be painful.
The Lord gave commands and counsel for the welfare of his people. Yet, they made a choice time and again to ignore him. Over time, after Israel refused to submit to him, the Lord "gave them over to their stubborn hearts to follow their own devices." As a result, the pages of the Old Testament record seasons of great oppression, hardship and national devastation. Turning your back on wise counsel can be very painful.
Do you ever find yourself thinking that you have a better idea than God? Have you questioned his commands and counsel, thinking that they were archaic and irrelevant for today? God's Word is timeless and is best received by submissive hearts. Those who do not listen will have a hard road to travel. Turning your back on wise counsel can be very painful.


Monday, August 26, 2019

The Name...

"Help us, O God our Savior, for the glory of your name; deliver us and forgive our sins for your name’s sake." -- Psalm 79:9
Years ago many people were highly driven by their "family name". Children were told to live up to the family name and were expected to honor it on the sports field or battle field. Family members were considered responsible for their heritage and were instructed to never bring it disgrace. The name was everything.
The psalmist cried out for help and deliverance. What was his greatest concern? Was he focused on his personal safety and future? Or was his city and nation the key to his prayer? His request was centered on the most significant issue... "the glory of your name". Even his cry for forgiveness was made for the sake of God's name. The name was everything.
May we remember whose children we are and whose name we have inherited? May we live up to his name and honor it in all that we do? In our goals and prayers, may they all be for the glory of his name. The day is coming when all God's servants "will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads". (Revelation 22:4) The name is everything.

Sunday, August 25, 2019

God alone...

"No one from the east or the west or from the desert can exalt a man. But it is God who judges: He brings one down, he exalts another." -- Psalm 75:6-7
Stars come and go without public elections or political power struggles. Our Solar System is just one member of a vast Milky Way galaxy with 200 to 400 billion stars. But how many galaxies are there in the entire Universe? A recent German supercomputer simulation put that number at 500 billion. Who determines the size or placement of one star or another?  God alone is in control.
The Psalmist says in Psalm 147:4, "He determines the number of the stars and calls them each by name." and we are told in Isaiah 40:26, "He who brings out the starry host one by one, and calls them each by name. Because of his great power and mighty strength, not one of them is missing." Since God rules every corner of the universe, why should we find it hard to believe that he rules in the affairs of men? Just when men have deceived themselves into believing that they control their world, this truth knocks at the door, "But it is God who judges: He brings one down, he exalts another". God alone is in control.
John the Baptist said in John 3:27, “A man can receive only what is given him from heaven." Be wise my friend and look to the Lord for your promotion in life. Be assured as well, that though your world may seem to be in complete disarray, there is order in the universe. Trust in this great truth: God alone is in control.


Saturday, August 24, 2019

Faith and Hope ...

"Then I thought, “To this I will appeal: the years of the right hand of the Most High.” I will remember the deeds of the LORD; yes, I will remember your miracles of long ago. I will meditate on all your works and consider all your mighty deeds." -- Psalm 77:10-12 
Nostalgia can be a mixed bag of memories. The good old days may bring pleasant thoughts for reflection. Then again, if the "good old" days were really that good, we might feel discouraged about the present "not so good" days. The best memories are those that restore faith and hope.
Such was the case for the psalmist.  As he said earlier, "When I was in distress, I sought the Lord". In the midst of discouraging circumstances, he took time to remember God's faithfulness and miracles of long ago. He knew that a God who never changes would be as quick to perform "mighty deeds" today as yesterday. This kind of reflection restored his faith and hope.
Nostalgia is a very good medicine when we remember the deeds of the Lord. Jeremiah said it best in Lamentations 3:23, "Great is your faithfulness". Since we have a Savior who is the "same yesterday, today and forever" (Hebrews 13:8), we have every reason to be daily restored in faith and hope.

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Friday, August 23, 2019

Our Portion...

"Yet I am always with you; you hold me by my right hand. You guide me with your counsel, and afterward you will take me into glory. Whom have I in heaven but you?  And earth has nothing I desire besides you. My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever." -- Psalm 73:23-26 
How many people languish over the wealth and success of others? They live in a world of "shoulda, coulda, woulda". Envy floods their hearts when they see the lifestyle of the rich and famous and they wonder where they went wrong. Yet, in the face of eternity, all the wealth and success in life will never amount to anything. The greatest eternal value is being personally held in the right hand of God.
This psalm comes from a struggling soul who had great difficulty dealing with the abundance of the wicked. Why live righteously and have nothing to show for such a choice? But, when he looked within the sanctuary and within his soul, the truth came to light. The psalmist was wealthier than any one on earth, since the Lord was his "portion forever".
What drives your life my friend? What do you define as success and what do you value the most? "Stuff" will come and go throughout the years, but when you walk with the Lord, he holds you by his right hand. Step back and take inventory. What is your most precious possession? When the Lord is your portion, earth will have nothing you desire besides him, for he is the strength of your heart. With the Lord, you have wealth and success beyond imagination!


Thursday, August 22, 2019

Poor and needy...

"Yet I am poor and needy; come quickly to me, O God. You are my help and my deliverer; O LORD, do not delay." -- Psalm 70:5 
We live in world that applauds achievement by sweat and blood. The Marines are always looking for "A Few Good Men" and Olympic coaches drive their athletes with "you can do it". The idea is centered on never admitting personal weakness and living strong. For most people it's unacceptable to say "I am poor and needy".
I have always appreciated the writings of David for a number of reasons. One significant aspect of the Psalms is his complete honesty and transparency. David was a strong warrior and powerful King, but he never hesitated to express his need for God's help and deliverance. When he was hurting and in trouble, an open heart cried out, "I am poor and needy".
Do you ever free too proud and independent to acknowledge your need? Have you been led to believe that you can go it alone? Is personal strength enough for the battle? Or are you willing to be honest with yourself and the Lord with a simple prayer... "I am poor and needy; come quickly to me, O God."


Wednesday, August 21, 2019

A little sin...

"If I had cherished sin in my heart, the Lord would not have listened; but God has surely listened and heard my voice in prayer. Praise be to God, who has not rejected my prayer or withheld his love from me!" -- Psalm 66:18-20
A few years ago I installed a surround sound system in our living room. I must make it clear that I am not well experienced in wiring audio equipment and things just didn't go very well. I thought that using a staple gun would move things right along, but I failed to understand that the staples would short out the signal. After all the work was done there was the most beautiful silence you can imagine. A little staple in the wrong place can really block sweet music.
In the same way, small things can neutralize our spiritual lives in  many ways. We may spend days, months and years building a great spiritual surround sound system in ministry. Everything can be well placed and look just great, but when we seek the Lord's blessing, all we find is silence. What could be the problem you might ask? Well, a little sin can really block sweet music from the Lord.
David knew that, "If I had cherished sin in my heart, the Lord would not have listened". Do we have the same conviction? May we be far more careful to maintain an unhindered communication with our Lord? David also prayed another prayer in Psalm 139:23-24 "Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting." Remember, a little sin can block the sweetest music of God's blessing.


Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Strength ...

"But I will sing of your strength, in the morning I will sing of your love; for you are my fortress, my refuge in times of trouble. O my Strength, I sing praise to you; you, O God, are my fortress, my loving God." - Psalm 59:16-17
There was a time that I lifted weights for strength training. I would rise early and work out like so many others that I knew and read about. Each morning brought another routine that added to the strength building program. While there are a great number who follow this pattern of life, there are fewer who rise early to seek their deeper Strength.
No matter where David found himself, he rose early to sing of his deeper Strength... the Lord. He even named the Lord "my Strength" as he sang praise to him. As a result of rising every day to seek his Strength, David grew stronger. But, his was not strength from within; it was strength from above.
Where does your strength come from today? Are you growing stronger every day as you rise to seek your "Strength"? In the face of great spiritual battles, we all need Strength from above. As Paul wrote in Ephesians 6:10, "Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power."
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Monday, August 19, 2019

Lasting rest ...

"I said, "Oh, that I had the wings of a dove! I would fly away and be at rest - I would flee far away and stay in the desert; Selah... But I call to God, and the LORD saves me." - Psalm 55:6,7,16 
What an experience it is to lift off the runway on a rainy day and rise above the clouds into the sunshine. When everything seems so dreary and life seems to weigh you down, the gray clouds slip away and you seem to float on into a new day. How often would we "fly away and be at rest"?
David wrote this psalm during troubling times in his life. In the midst of great turmoil and rejection he desired the wings of a dove. Then, he would fly away and be at rest from all his problems. But as he continues to write, David settles upon the true rest that comes on the wings of prayer; "But I call to God, and the LORD saves me." True and lasting rest is only found in the LORD.
Whatever your situation my friend, there is no desert that will give you the rest you seek. Look east, west, north, or south, but in every direction you turn there will only be a dry and barren land. Rise up on the wings of prayer and find refreshing and lasting rest in the LORD.

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Sunday, August 18, 2019

Rewarding Fear ...

"Who, then, is the man that fears the LORD? He will instruct him in the way chosen for him...  The LORD confides in those who fear him; he makes his covenant known to them." - Psalm 25:12, 14
I feared my junior high school vice principle. I wasn't afraid of him, but I feared and respected his authority. He commanded the respect of all the students; therefore there was peace and order wherever he walked. Having fear of those in authority can be overbearing or it can be reassuring. When the authority is reassuring, our fear will be rewarding.
David knew the Lord as his Shepherd, but he feared him as the LORD. He respected God as the one who was in charge and who had the wisdom and power for the job. David was reassured that when he lived in reverence of the LORD, he would find lifelong direction and daily insight from him as a result. Since the authority of David's Shepherd was reassuring, his fear was rewarding.
How do you walk before the Lord from day to day? Do you approach him frivolously or do you fear Him with the respect and reverence that he deserves? Do you serve him with confidence in his wisdom and power? When you find his authority reassuring, your fear will be rewarding.

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Saturday, August 17, 2019

Our Ever-Present Help ...

"God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble." - Psalm 46:1 
I left the house the other day without my cell phone. I immediately returned to retrieve the little "necessity". Most of us have grown attached to these little guys for a variety of reasons. We feel like the officers on Star Trek, who were always in touch with the Starship through their communicators. When we have our trusty cell phone by our side, we know that help is always near.
While we are centuries away from the writing of this Psalm, we are still in need of a refuge, strength and help in trouble. The modern development of cell phones may be a great comfort when traveling, but it will never compare to the presence of God. He is far more than a resource who provides or delegates, HE is our refuge, strength and help himself. When we walk with the Lord, we know that help is always near.
Are you feeling alone today? Are there overwhelming fears that fill your heart? Do you feel like your communicator is out of range with no signal bars on the screen? Then I recommend that you "Be still and know that He is God" and gain a fresh sense that "God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble."

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Friday, August 16, 2019

Heroes ...

"Blessed is he who has regard for the weak; the LORD delivers him in times of trouble. The LORD will protect him and preserve his life; he will bless him in the land and not surrender him to the desire of his foes." - Psalm 41: 1-2
As children, we read the stories of heroes; those who came to the rescue of the downtrodden and abused. They would arrive just in time to deliver from the most terrible treatment and become the heroes of the day. TV programs followed suit for some years with weekly adventures of individuals who could be contacted when no one else would help. While we love to read about heroes, is it possible that we could be someone's hero someday?
David wrote about heroes when he said, "Blessed is he who has regard for the weak". Even the Lord is interested in those who, in his name, will reach out to help those in need. Jesus put it in these words, "Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy" (Matthew 5:7) Yes, if you are willing to hear and follow the Lord's call, you too can be a hero.
Has the Lord put someone in your circle of life that is weak and in need? Is there some little way that you can show them mercy and kindness? God honors those who have regard for the weak. Mercy is a key that often opens the door of the soul to the gospel. Be someone's hero today.

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Thursday, August 15, 2019

Discipline ...

"O LORD, do not rebuke me in your anger or discipline me in your wrath. For your arrows have pierced me, and your hand has come down upon me. Because of your wrath there is no health in my body; my bones have no soundness because of my sin. My guilt has overwhelmed me like a burden too heavy to bear... O LORD, do not forsake me; be not far from me, O my God. Come quickly to help me, O Lord my Savior." - Psalm 38:1-4, 21-22 
Discipline is always difficult. Whether we are corrected by our parents, school teachers or the local authorities, the process is still painful at best. The ideal hope is for a learning process that will lead to the correction of bad behavior. Discipline should ultimately be a help that will deliver us.
David knew that he was suffering from the corrective hand of God. He had lost health and soundness due to his sin. He was a Godly man, not just because he most often lived for God, but because he also acknowledged his sin whenever he failed God. David was overwhelmed with his guilt and sought the Lord for help and deliverance. 
Are you willing to acknowledge your sin when God comes knocking at your door? When suffering comes your way is it possible that the Lord is working to purge you of habits that will destroy you? Why continue day by day with guilt that weighs you down? The Lord will never forsake you, so cry out to him in repentance and ask that he comes quickly to help you with his grace and deliverance.

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Wednesday, August 14, 2019

The "one two punch"...

"I sought the LORD, and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears. Those who look to him are radiant; their faces are never covered with shame. This poor man called, and the LORD heard him; he saved him out of all his troubles." - Psalm 34:4-6
The "one two punch" is defined as a combination of two blows delivered in rapid succession in boxing, especially a left lead followed by a right cross. When troubles come our way, we often face a "one two punch" from the outer circumstances and the fears within. We need to seek the Lord who delivers us from fear and saves us from troubles by his "one two punch".
David was in a serious mess as he faced a formidable enemy with nowhere to turn. He saw his life slipping away ever so quickly, so he sought the Lord. He asked for deliverance from his fears and to be saved from his troubles. David knew how overwhelming his fears were and how quickly they would sap him of strength, so this was his first request. Once free of his fears he prayed with great confidence to be saved from his troubles. God answered David's prayers with his "one two punch".
Never ignore the fears that haunt you my friend. Troubles come your way and fears follow close behind. Because fears will cripple and discourage you to the point of giving up, seek the Lord for his deliverance. Then bring your situation to his throne of grace to be saved from your troubles. Never be discouraged by the fears and troubles of life, just look to the Lord for his "one two punch".


Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Our hiding place...

"Therefore let everyone who is godly pray to you while you may be found; surely when the mighty waters rise, they will not reach him. You are my hiding place; you will protect me from trouble and surround me with songs of deliverance. Selah" - Psalm 32:6-7 
We had a pretty wet spring this year. On some days the rain came down in torrents. Nearby communities were flooded over and over again. We have lived in three places over the years where flooding has taken homes and lives. Every time such storms come, anxiety runs high. When the mighty waters rise, we need a hiding place.
Early in this psalm David reflects on a forgiven life that is restored to fellowship with God. He builds up to the comforting result of finding security in God's unfailing love. There is no storm or trouble that will overcome the child of God when they rest in him. When the mighty waters rise, they will not reach him. He will always be protected because the Lord is his hiding place.
Where is your protection from the floods today? Will the troubles of life take your song away? Pray, while the Lord may be found and see that he will protect you and surround you with songs of deliverance. When the waters rise, find rest in the One who is your hiding place.


Monday, August 12, 2019

The Lord "IS" ...

"The LORD is my shepherd..." - Psalm 23:1
As a pastor I have performed funerals beyond number. Whether the loved one was a devout believer or rarely attended church, this passage is the reading of choice. In the hours of death, these words are of great comfort for those who grieve. But, the ultimate question concerning the departed is; was the LORD their Shepherd in life?
David expressed his life relationship with the LORD as his Shepherd. The entire psalm takes one through a daily faith walk. It all begins with the present tense of "is". The Lord "is" to be the Shepherd we follow in life, if he "will" be the Shepherd who receives us in eternity. Everyone wants a Shepherd in death, but is he their Shepherd in life?
Will you need the shepherd care of the Lord sometime in the future? Will you request this wonderful Psalm to be read during your last hours of life? Every comfort for your tomorrows begin with the "is" of today. The Lord will be your Shepherd in death, only if he "is" your Shepherd in life. 




Sunday, August 11, 2019

The LORD is Still on His Throne!

""When the foundations are being destroyed, what can the righteous do?” The LORD is in his holy temple; the LORD is on his heavenly throne. He observes the sons of men; his eyes examine them." - Psalm 11:3-4

When I attended college, I lived in a college owned apartment for a year. It was very old and scheduled to be demolished. When you stood across the street, you could see the two ends of the building sag down like the leaning tower of Pisa. Yet, we never lived in fear because we were assured that the building was safe. The foundation was weak, but the word of the college was sure.
David knew that although the foundations in life may be destroyed, the LORD is on his throne. The enemies may be many, but the LORD watches over the righteous. He sits on his throne observing our every step, ready to redeem and strong to save. Life may shift and sag like a leaning tower, but the throne of God remains sure and secure.
Are your foundations cracking and shifting beneath you? Do you feel unsettled in the constant changes of life? Then turn to the throne in heaven and be encouraged with this invitation...  "Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need." (Hebrews 4:16) Your foundations may be weak, but the foundations of heaven are strong.

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Saturday, August 10, 2019

The Perfect Duet ...

"May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer." - Psalm 19:14
What makes a beautiful song? Every song is made up of both words and music. Some songs have very thought provoking words, but a lifeless tune. Other songs have a haunting melody, but the words are empty in meaning. The song that has timeless quality is one that has just the right combination of words and music... the perfect duet.
David was a man of insightful words, as well as a gifted musician. He understood the importance of both qualities being in tune with each other. He also realized that his words and the meditations of his heart needed to complement each other to be pleasing the sight of the Lord. Just like a good song, the life that has the right combination of words and heart is... the perfect duet.
How is your life-song today?  Do your carefully chosen words come from a well guarded heart? Do the meditations of your heart fully compliment the words that you speak? When the Lord looks upon your life is he pleased with the words of your mouth and music of your heart? Does he see... the perfect duet?
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A QUOTE FOR THE DAY

"We cannot measure spiritual force by rules of philosophy or definitions of 
theology any more than by a carpenter's rule or chemist's scales.  It is "with the heart man believeth unto righteousness."  And yet, the character of a man's thoughts has much to do with success or failure in the spiritual life. He is influenced by what he thinks."

 -- T. Henry Howard in Fuel for Sacred Flame

Friday, August 9, 2019

Don't rust out...

"LORD, who may dwell in your sanctuary? Who may live on your holy hill? He whose walk is blameless and who does what is righteous, who speaks the truth from his heart and has no slander on his tongue, who does his neighbor no wrong and casts no slur on his fellowman, who despises a vile man but honors those who fear the LORD, who keeps his oath even when it hurts, who lends his money without usury and does not accept a bribe against the innocent. He who does these things will never be shaken." - Psalm 15
Our first car was a 1979 Dodge Aspen, with a 3.7 L slant six engine. That car ran like a top for over 100,000 miles because the engine was unbeatable. There was one problem; the body of the car rusted out underneath us. The quality of the engine was outstanding, but the quality of the body was substandard. It was all about integrity; the engine had it, but the body didn't.
The spiritual life is like a car... it's built to travel, not to sit in the garage. When the Lord saves us and seals us with the Holy Spirit, our future is secure, but our journey is just beginning. We enjoy transformed hearts that possess and are driven by a Holy God. Psalm 15 is a guide book that will help produce a body of equal quality. It's all about integrity; when the heart has it, so can the body.
How do you begin each day? Do you have a plan of action that will keep your body from rusting out from underneath the Spirit led heart? This Psalm provides a number of areas to evaluate on a daily basis. The promise is simple... "He who does these things will never be shaken". Be a person of integrity, both heart and body. 


Thursday, August 8, 2019

Neverland...

"The LORD is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble. Those who know your name will trust in you, for you, LORD, have never forsaken those who seek you." - Psalm 9:9-10

In 1904, the play Peter Pan debuted and in 1911 the children's book Peter and Wendy was published. The stories tell of a girl named Wendy and her brothers flying off with Peter Pan to a land of fun and adventure. Author J. M. Barrie wrote of a fictional island named "Neverland" where children could fly away from the harsh realities of  life. Such stories pique the imagination in a world of constant change and abounding troubles. Could there ever be a real place to fly called Neverland?
David often wrote about troubles, dangers and injustice. His life was filled with oppression as he cried out, "O LORD, see how my enemies persecute me! Have mercy and lift me up from the gates of death" (vs. 13) Still, David always had reason to hope in the darkest time because he found refuge in the Lord. He learned that the Lord NEVER forsakes those who seek him. The Lord said it in Deuteronomy 31:6 and again in Hebrews 13:5... “NEVER will I leave you; NEVER will I forsake you.” David found a real place to fly called Neverland.
Do you feel trapped in a world of stress, pressure and unending difficulties? Where do you go to find relief? Have you found someone who will always be there for you, whatever the circumstances? If not, let me take your hand and we'll fly away to "a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble." We'll fly away to the Lord, who NEVER forsakes those who seek him, because he said he will NEVER leave you, he will NEVER forsake you. Yes my friend, there really is place called Neverland.

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

Need Help?

"O LORD, do not rebuke me in your anger or discipline me in your wrath. Be merciful to me, LORD, for I am faint; O LORD, heal me, for my bones are in agony. My soul is in anguish. How long, O LORD, how long? Turn, O LORD, and deliver me; save me because of your unfailing love." - Psalm 6:1-4

Why do we answer the question "How are you" with a perpetual "I'm fine"? Especially when we're not "fine"? Maybe because we don't like complainers, so we don't complain. Or maybe because we don't think other people really want to know how we really are. Then again, we may just be working on the blue ribbon for martyrdom with the determination of... "I can make it on my own".
Transparency may not be the best approach with some people in your life, but it's definitely the best in your relationship with God. What made David a man after God's own heart? One reason is found in the fact that he was an open book in his prayer life. He never held back his fears, pains, weakness or anguish. He even brought his complaints to the Lord with an honest confession... "I can't make it on my own."
Even though the Lord already knows how you are, he still wants you to tell him all about it. He looks for us to be wide open about our needs and feelings. He wants us to lean on him for the healing, strength and courage for every moment of the day. Will you choose to be a "Macho, Macho Man" (or woman) today? Or will you be honest with yourself and the Lord by asking for help with that really hard confession... "I can't make it on my own" 

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