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Deliver Me

“Deliver me, O Lord, from my enemies; in You I take shelter. Teach me to do Your will, for You are my God; Your Spirit is good. Lead me in the land of uprightness.” - Psalm 143:9-10

For a guy who was “a man after God’s own heart”, David had a lot of enemies. Because he had a closeness with God, you would think he wouldn’t have any problems.  After all, he was the king of Israel.  But the truth is that he did have lots of conflict.  Much what David agonized over is recorded in the Book of Psalm. 

Over and over in the scriptures, we read that God is a refuge and a shelter for His people, and even though David had people in his life that didn’t get him or understand what he was all about, he knew that the Lord was the one Person he could run to Who really did know David’s heart.

While in the presence of God, David asked for guidance.  He wanted to know God’s will for his life in the face of all his detractors. From this my heart learns a lesson.  While we can’t always control what others say about us or do to us, we can decide where we focus our thoughts. David didn’t try and change who his enemies were, but he did want to make sure his conduct was right before his God.

It could be that today you are feeling much like David did when he wrote Psalm 143. There are people around you who don’t get you. They don’t like the way you part your hair or the methods you use to raise you kids or the way you do your work. You could spend all of your time and energy changing what they think of you or you could choose rather to ask God to teach you His will for your life.

Ask God today to “lead you in the land of uprightness.” Why? Because God’s opinion of you is the only one that really matters. Asking how you can please the Lord in this situation should be your ultimate focus.

In Christ,

Pastor Bob


Get Moving For Jesus

And it shall come to pass, as soon as the soles of the feet of the priests who bear the ark of the Lord, the Lord of all the earth, shall rest in the waters of the Jordan, that the waters of the Jordan shall be cut off, the waters that come down from upstream, and they shall stand as heap.” Joshua 3:13

In the book of Joshua, God commands Joshua to lead the Israelites into the Promised Land.  In this verse, we see that God said the waters of the Jordan wouldn’t part unless the sole of the feet of the priests first stepped into the water. In the same way, God often calls us to step out in faith and then He works in miraculous ways. We have to get our feet wet if we want to see rivers part.

The Lord was teaching the Israelites an important lesson about trusting Him. As much as it’s difficult to steer a parked car, it’s hard to be used by the Lord if you are not stepping out in faith. Now, the Lord did a great miracle for the Israelites when they came out of Egypt. Exodus 14 tells us that the Lord “opened up a path through the sea, with walls of water on each side; and a strong east wind blew all that night, drying the sea bottom”.

The events in the Book of Joshua occur one generation later after God parted the Red Sea and the same God who performed a mighty miracle at exactly the right time for Moses is ready to do the same for Joshua, in order to demonstrate His great power and love for His people.

If you are young, you must be careful not to ride the coat tails of your parent’s faith. God has done miracles for them, but the same God wants to show you His power too. Saying, “my mother is a great woman of faith” or “my dad has led many to Christ” doesn’t cut it. What does God want to do with your life?

Are you trusting in God’s power today? Like the priests in the water, the trusting Christian finds the words of Jesus simple and easy to accept and readily embraces those words.  He or she chooses to follow the teaching and example of Jesus as the standard for their lives. They have reconciled within their own heart the fact that they cannot approach God merely by intellect.

The priests were asked to step in the waters by faith, not knowing what dangers and enemies might be on the other side of the river but they were willing to step out in faith and watch God work. So often, because we can’t explain the miraculous, the impossible, the unexplainable, we miss out on all the great and wonderful and glorious things God wants to do in our lives.

Joshua and the Israelites had to trust God and step out in faith.  Sometimes you have to expect a miracle just as Joshua did to get moving for the Lord.  How do you approach the understanding of miracles?  If you expect a miracle from God every day of your life, what positive affect could that have on your life? How can you step out in faith today to get moving for Jesus?

 

Yours in Christ,

Pastor Bob

Hold on to Jesus

And they went to tell His disciples, behold, Jesus met them, saying, “Rejoice!” So they came and held Him by the feet and worshipped Him. Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid. Go and tell My brethren to go to Galilee, and there they will see Me.”  Matthew 28:9-10

After Jesus was resurrected, the women came to anoint His body for burial, but an angel told them “He is not here, He has risen. Hurry, go tell the others.”

So there was an urgency in the message they were given. I have sensed the same preoccupation with telling others the good news about Jesus.  After all, it really is good news.  Because He lives, you can be born again. Through Jesus you can know your Creator in a personal way.  By putting your faith in Him for salvation you can have a real hope of heaven, and He will help you live your life today by equipping you with the power of the Holy Spirit so you have all you need to serve and minister to others.

But what is the urgency about? Well, everyday around us people are dying without knowing that Jesus loves them and that their sins can be forgiven.  That preoccupies my thinking and serving. But in Matthew 28:9-10, the bible says that the women rushed from the tomb with the good news, no doubt excited to tell the other disciples but along the way they stopped.  Why? Because Jesus met them and they held Him by the feet and worshipped Him.

This teaches me that the best approach to the ministry is where there is an urgency and obedience to tell people about Jesus, but it must be balanced by holding on to His feet and worshipping Him.  After all, the good news is all about Jesus!

There is a lot of running around in ministry in a good sense.  It’s the right thing not to loiter while people die without the hope of heaven.  There is an urgency to tell people “He is risen.” There are the strongholds of the enemy that must be torn down by prayer and God’s Word. There are depressed people to encourage, the sick to visit.

The trick is to do it all and still hold on to the feet of Jesus. You can be successful. You can do the work of the evangelist.  You can be a great mom or dad or college student, just don’t let go of your grip on Jesus.  The women found Jesus on the road they traveled.  That’s where He chose to engage them.  He will meet us in the same way if we still stop and worship Him today.

Yours in Christ,

Pastor Bob

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