Hi y’all! I didn’t mean to take a little blogging break. We had our gospel meeting last week, and I didn’t have any extra time to write. Then, with the horrible events in Boston and Texas, nothing I would have posted would have been that important.
We live in a fallen world, and there will always be evil. Things happen that we don’t understand. While our hearts are heavy, we know we have a Heavenly Father who will never leave us if we cling to Him. Our job is to be a light to this dark world.
This verse gives me so much comfort. I repeat it to myself frequently on stormy days, and I thought of it again several times last week.
“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.” John 14:27
I am thankful for God and His love, goodness, and peace!
“For God alone, O my soul, wait in silence,
for my hope is from him.
He only is my rock and my salvation,
my fortress; I shall not be shaken.
On God rests my salvation and my glory;
my mighty rock, my refuge is God.
Trust in him at all times, O people;
pour out your heart before him;
God is a refuge for us. Selah ” (Psalm 62:5-8 ESV)
I guess you could say these verses of mine weren’t favorites of mine until yesterday. I had another verse in mind, but found this passage instead when I was searching for verses with the word trust. There’s so much darkness in the world today. I need the reminder to put my trust in Him. No recession or tax increase or immorality or loss of liberty can shake our foundation when we trust in the Lord. I would rather trust in Him than things of this world!
And they were to stand every morning, thanking and praising the Lord, and likewise at evening, (1 Chronicles 23:30 ESV)
I will praise the name of God with a song;
I will magnify him with thanksgiving. (Psalm 69:30 ESV)
Oh come, let us sing to the Lord;
let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation!
Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving;
let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise!
For the Lord is a great God,
and a great King above all gods. (Psalm 95:1-3 ESV)
do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. (Philippians 4:6 ESV)
First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, (1 Timothy 2:1 ESV)
We can’t separate our gratitude from God, because He is the source of all our blessings!
“But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons. And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!” So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then an heir through God”(Galatians 4:4-7 ESV)
Adoption is a subject that is still often on my mind. I don’t talk much about it because it seems such a long way in our future. Sometimes I stop what I’m doing and say a quick prayer for birth mothers and agencies, and children waiting for a home.
Adoption is close to my heart because of M, but I also am adopted. As a Christian, I am a child of God. And that’s a wonderful thing!
Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. (Philippians 2:4-8 ESV)
As Christians, we have to have the attitude of a servant. We are all servants. Having the mindset of looking out for the best interests of others rather than ourselves is how we can follow Christ’s example. I want to be a better servant of Christ today!
Have a wonderful Wednesday!
“Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.” (Hebrews 12:1, 2 ESV)
To me, these two verses lay out our greatest and most important challenge as Christians. The “great cloud of witnesses” refers to all the faithful men and women listed in chapter 11 which has come to be known as “the hall of faith”. These faithful people served God and endured to the end. That’s what we are challenged to do.
I have so many things I want to accomplish in this life. Goals are great to have, but if I don’t have this as my main goal, I am missing the point. These verses make me want to get to work and run with endurance!
O Lord, our Lord,
how majestic is your name in all the earth!
You have set your glory above the heavens.
Out of the mouth of babies and infants,
you have established strength because of your foes,
to still the enemy and the avenger.
When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars, which you have set in place,
what is man that you are mindful of him,
and the son of man that you care for him? (Psalm 8:1-4 ESV)
Reasons why this is one of my favorite passages:
1. It asks and answers the question “what is man that you are mindful of him.” We don’t deserve God’s grace and care, and yet He has our best interests at heart. This is an incredible thing!
2. It reminds us that we can see that God exists because of His wonderful creation.
3. It praises God.
“And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.” 1 Corinthians 13:13
Abide - Faith - Hope - and now… Love.
How do I even begin to write a post that does love justice? I know I won’t be able to because Biblical love is too amazing for me to fully comprehend. Love is the reason for everything. Love is the greatest.
The entire chapter of 1 Corinthians 13 provides a description of the characteristics of love. In the King James version, the word “charity” is used in place of love. This word is the word agape or ” ” in Greek. It’s the type of love that we have for our brothers and sisters in Christ and the type of love God has for us. According to 1 Corinthians 13 this type of love is kind, patient, everlasting, and unfailing . It’s not boastful or envious.
Agape love is sacrificial. John 15:13 tells us “Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.” (ESV). Romans 5:8 says, “but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Because God loves us, He provided a way of salvation for us. He sent His only Son as the perfect sacrifice for our sins. This type of sacrificial love is so amazing to me! Nothing can separate us from God’s love (Romans 8).
God loves us, and we are supposed to love our brethren in the same way. Mark 12:30-31 states, “ And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”
Christians and love go hand in hand. I truly believe love should be one of the defining characteristics of our lives. Love really is the greatest, and I’m thankful for Biblical love!
“Make me to know your ways, O Lord;
teach me your paths.
Lead me in your truth and teach me,
for you are the God of my salvation;
for you I wait all the day long.”
(Psalm 25:4, 5 ESV)
“who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.” (2 Corinthians 1:4 ESV)
“do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.”(Philippians 4:6-8 ESV)
“Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you.” (1 Peter 5:6, 7 ESV)
“And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.” 1 Corinthians 13:13
“I hope it doesn’t rain today.” - ”I hope Alabama wins the softball college world series tonight.” - ”I hope my favorite store puts that dress on sale.” – “I hope we get to go on vacation this year.” – These are all examples of how most people use the word hope. Yet, hope is something much deeper than a friviolous wish. In Romans 8:24-25, the Bible indicates that hope in these earthly things is not true hope.
24 For we were saved in this hope, but hope that is seen is not hope; for why does one still hope for what he sees? 25 But if we hope for what we do not see, we eagerly wait for it with perseverance. (NKJV
The Greek Lexicon has a definition for the word hope in the verse 1 Corinthians 13:13 that says hope is “joyful and confident expectation of eternal salvation.” Biblical hope is something that we can expect to happen. To me, hope is a Biblical concept that gives me confidence like no other.
Romans 5:1-5 explains the concept of hope:
Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have[a]peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, 2 through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. 3 And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; 4 and perseverance, character; and character, hope. 5 Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us. (NKJV)
Hope is something we rejoice in and something that grows in us. We have access to hope through Christ. So what do we have hope in? Eternal life and salvation (1 Thessalonians 5:8. Titus 1:2, Titus 2:7).
Today, I am thankful for Biblical hope and the confidence it gives to the Christian. It’s not something we are confident in because of what we have done but because of what He has done for us!