Saturday, November 24, 2012

Do Not Give Up!

Psalm 126:6  He who goes out weeping,
bearing the seed for sowing,
shall come home with shouts of joy,
bringing his sheaves with him.  (ESV)

There is a time for sowing and a time for reaping. When it is time to sow, you must go out and sow (Prov. 20:4) whether you feel like it or not (v. 5). Here the Psalmist recalls a time of great rejoicing (v. 2), when the Lord had brought a great deliverance/victory to His people (v. 1, 3). But now the people find themselves in need of God's restoring again (v. 4). But they must "sow in tears" if they are to "reap with shouts of joy" (v. 5).

I always say that we must continue to cling to & trust in God through the trials if we want to come out of it with a stronger faith on the other end. If we abandon God during our trial we will be blind to His work in delivering us as well as the work in our hearts in the midst of it. We must continue to do the acts of faith, continue to live the life of a follower of Jesus even when it seems like God does not hear us, doesn't care, will never deliver us. Pray, continue in fellowship, worship the King, receive solid Biblical teaching, allow others to bear your burdens, continue in devotions, meditation, fasting.

Brad, you must continue to sow if you want to see the harvest. Do not give up. You will not be like the sluggard who seeks at harvest and has nothing because he failed to plow in autumn (Prov. 20:4).

"Sow for yourselves righteousness;
reap steadfast love;
break up your fallow ground,

for it is time to seek the LORD,
that he may come and rain righteousness upon you." (Hos. 10:12)

Lord Jesus, have mercy on me, help me, strengthen me to be faithful when its hard. Holy Spirit grant me a gift of faith - for this is hard for me. Lord Jesus pour out Your righteousness upon me. "Dear God, perform Your work in me. Do Your work through me."* I am desperately in need of Your strength, Your grace!

In Jesus' name - Amen,

*from Love & Respect, by Emerson Eggerichs

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

RE: Trust

Psalm 124:6-7  Blessed be the LORD,
  who has not given us
  as prey to their teeth!
We have escaped like a bird
  from the snare of the fowlers;
the snare is broken,
  and we have escaped!  (ESV)

What vivid imagery: if God had not delivered us, these enemies would be tearing us apart - sinking their teeth into our flesh. It is an image of narrow escape at the last minute - like a bird caught in a trap who manages to break free just in time. Oh the feeling of freedom (joy and triumph) as he flies away!

Once again it is as sovereign creator God, that He is able to deliver us. He is powerful, all powerful. I am limited, weak, finite. The truth is I am bothered by this. I want to have all I need to deliver myself. I feel more secure this way. I don't want to have to trust someone else. On the other side of the coin - oh the feeling of relief when I realize I don't have to do it all on my own (be all), especially when I know that ultimately I can't. I can't control everything.

God, help me to embrace this joy of release - the peace of dependence on another. Holy Spirit imprint an understanding of the character of God upon the retina of my brain that I might not forget Your loving kindness toward me (hesed). The truth is that I probably have more trouble believing that "You will" more so than "You can." I ask You to receive me, loving Father, just as I am. I thank You Jesus, my friend, my Lord, my brother for demonstrating so clearly and tangibly - How great the Fathers love for us!

In Jesus' name - Amen,