“We are merely moving shadows, and all our busy rushing ends in nothing. We heap up wealth, not knowing who will spend it. And so, Lord, where do I put my hope? My only hope is in you.”Psalms 39:6-7
This is real love—not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins. (1 John 4:10 NLT)
Very nice piece from the “Answers in Genisis” folks. I know that I was never presented the Biblical account as an option in school, even grade school. It’s little wonder that evolution is what most folks default to when the idea of the age of the earth or any thing else alongside this line comes up. We have to do a better job of teaching this concept to the world, starting with our families.
Luke 5:16 And he withdrew himself into the wilderness, and prayed.
As most of you know, I enjoy doing leather work. There is some thing about it that just allows me to clear my head and all my aggravations just seem to leave. In fact, I often find that as I work on a project I’m able to focus more on the things of God. Perhaps the concentration I put into the project clears out the “cob webs” just enough to allow the Word to really penetrate; I can’t really explain it much clearer than that. But I do know that much of the most profitable meditation time for me comes when I’m tooling a belt, for example.
Jesus set the example for us in His words and deeds: We need to get away from the “multitudes” of life, what ever they may be for each of us, and have alone time with God. Christ often went into the wilderness to pray. I know a preacher that gets some of his best alone time on his riding mower. And I have some of mine at my leather work bench. We are all different, with different situations, likes, dislikes, hobbies, etc. But we all need to find our “prayer closet” to get into and away from every one and every thing that might distract us. That intimate time with God is vital, no matter where your’s occurs at, to our spiritual life and walk of faith.
Matthew 6:6 But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.
The last few weeks, months, really, have been very hectic for me. I’ve had a lot on my plate and my mind. Just to name a few things, we had the stress and anxiety of our daughter’s wedding, I got sick, pneumonia, just before the “big event”, and announcing my call to preach, among other things, all added, shall I say, a little extra to my acid reflux.
Over the past few weeks I had been putting so much thought and time into other things I let “my” time with God kind of slide onto the back burner. This week He gently reminded me of this. And I’m so thankful He did!
Sometimes we can get so busy with “stuff”, even good thing like praying for others and trying to be a help to someone, that we neglect our own spiritual health. The Lord showed me that I had allowed this to happen and that I was suffering for it.
While we always want to be a help, to edify when we can and to intercede for others, we have to remember that we need our time every day in our prayer closet just for ourselves. As Pastor Danny said, nothing can take the place of the fellowship we have one-on-one with our Lord. And it is imperative that we not neglect that daily time.
2 Timothy 3:16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:
Earlier today I was forwarded an email that contained a prayer request for a lady’s brother. I was asked to add the man to our prayer list. (Click this link to see it http://is.gd/fCVyR.)
What I normally do is to copy and paste the information into a new note. Then I edit it as needed, spell check it and then copy the final draft into a new email that I send blind carbon copy to all those on the list. Then it gets made into a post and put on our church blog. Normally, this goes smoothly but today I goofed it all up. The result was that the post was right but the emails were wrong: It appeared that I was requesting prayer for my brother (and I don’t even have one).
Anytime we get any information from any human source (news programs, the Internet, email, phone, even in person) it is subject to be incorrect. Scripture isn’t like that though. The verse referenced today says that all Scripture is inspired but it is really much more than that! The original Greek wording translates out more literally “breathed out by God”.
I’m so glad that in a fallen world where most everything can be questioned or suspect we have the infallible Word of God to guide us in all points of our lives! Take a few minutes today or this weekend and think about the Bible, God’s inspired Word, breathed out by Him, to us. And then thank Him for providing you with a Source you know is all true, completely correct, and for your benefit.
Galatians 5:17 For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would.
This afternoon one of our dogs went missing, after someone opened the gate on our fence, for several hours. I looked for him as best I could but my physical limitations and being sick really limited what I do as far as searching goes. After two hours of driving the neighborhood, walking as much as I could and hollering for the dog I was exhausted. I came home and began to pray at that point.
I knew that what I was asking, for God to deliver Jack home safely, was just a raindrop in the ocean compared to His power. After all, my God spoke the universe into existence, created all things and has moved mightily in my own life; this prayer was a pittance to Him compared to many that He has already answered.
Time drug on slowly. An hour later my wife came home and began to search the neighborhood. As she searched I moved inside the house to continue to pray. Another hour or more passed and I realized something: My flesh was warring against my spirit. My head kept trying to say it was hopeless, it had been too long, Jack wasn’t coming home. But my faith kept saying trust in God. It was a very real battle and I can’t really explain to you how it felt to know it was going on as it was.
Thank God after over four hours of being gone a neighbor several homes away, who I don’t know, brought a still-damp Jack home. He had fallen into her pool and had been treading water for God only knows how long. She said she went out to put chemicals in her pool and found him, got him out, dried him off and brought him to his address on the tags. She added she’d never have seen him if it weren’t for adding this chemicals and she hadn’t planned to do it today but for some reason did. I told her the reason was that she was used to answer my prayer.
I said all that to say this: Even though we are redeemed through the blood of Christ we are still going to have fights with our flesh. Though we are not of the flesh any longer we are still in the flesh. And as long as we live in this fleshly body we will have to fight against it, for it is still part of a fallen creation. So don’t let the battles drag you down; that’s what the devil would love. No, instead rejoice! The war is already won and as long as we keep up the fight one day we’ll experience the total victory!