Which Path Will You Take?

Father, thank you so much for the wonderful day yesterday. It was a blessing have Daniel and Renita sharing their talents in ministry. Once again we were shown that Your Word is not stagnant and dead but is truly vibrant and living! The Bible is just as applicable today as it ever has been.

2 Peter 2:4-22 (<<click here)

Most assuredly, Lord, You are a God of Love and you have done marvelous things and sacrificed greatly so that we can be victorious over the sin that wants to trip us up and take us down. All praise to You, our Lord and Savior!

Yes, You are the personification of love itself and we know that, as Peter earlier proclaimed, “Love covers a multitude of sins.” 1 Peter 4:8  You are love but You are also holy and just. While we still have breath and until we stand before You at the great judgment, there is always the possibility of forgiveness for our disobedience against you. But once we pass that point of no return our lot is cast. We will have chosen where we stand. If we’ve accepted Christ’s forgiveness and love, and repented of our sins, then we will join him for all eternity. But…if we rejected Christ’s forgiveness and not repented of our sins, then we will be eternally separated from him. We will bring God’s judgment upon ourselves.

2 Peter 2 clearly shows that You extend forgiveness to all but it also shows your judgment if we turn our backs on You. It is totally our choice.

Lord, help us to respond to Your love. Help us to generously share Your love. Help us to diligently proclaim Your love so that all may hear and turn to You. Amen!

Mar 20th, Mon, 6:30 am

Lead, Kindly Light

Father, it has happened literally hundreds of times over the past couple of years but every day I am amazed when You wake me. It is never with a jolt, leaving my heart pounding, but it always seems that I just open my eyes, glance at the clock and it is time for me to rise. And it’s not like I need up the same time of day…but You are faithful and You love me with a strong, consistent love. Thank You, Father.

I’m sure it comes as no surprise but I love music – all kinds of music! But one of my favorites has been a part of my life for my entire life and that is hymns. From the first time my mother carried me in her arms to church, hymns have touched me.

This morning after waking, before I even made it down the hall, a hymn popped into my mind – Lead, Kindly Light. The title itself was prompted by thoughts of You, Lord, for You are surely my patient, gentle guide through each and every day.

I’ve read where this song, written in 1833 by John Henry Newman, has been appropriately sung by many in dire circumstances and rightly so. But it is also a beautiful song that gives comfort along any part of life’s journey. The first verse reads,

Lead, kindly Light, amid the encircling gloom, lead Thou me on!
The night is dark, and I am far from home; lead Thou me on!
Keep Thou my feet; I do not ask to see
The distant scene; one step enough for me.

To me, it speaks of peace. I don’t need to see far ahead as my life moves continually onward for, Lord, one step [is] enough for me.” Lord, there is great comfort with You by my side throughout each stop of our journey together.

Mar 19th, Sun, 7:12 am

Beware the Charlatans

Father, I am grateful for Your love and forgiveness, for Your mercy and grace. And those words and the reality of those words are not just concepts to be tossed about. I have experienced them and continue to experience them. I surely don’t deserve it but You day after day lavishly bless me with these things and so much more. Praise Your Holy Name! Amen!

2 Peter 2:1-3 (<<click here)

Lord, another reason that we must be diligent in reading Your word and speaking with – and listening to – You is to assure that we are not led astray. Most definitely those who proclaim Your word are not infallible, we have our struggles, we make mistakes. Because of this, Your people must be discerning. We should pray for and lift up Your servants.

But another reason we should pray for discernment is that for millennia there have been charlatans who have not been driven by desires to further Your Kingdom but instead are all about fulfilling their own agendas of power or prosperity – some, at their core, have as their goal to undermine Your Kingdom. They are all about discrediting Your Church and Your name.

I’m sure some started with their hearts in the right place but those first tastes of power and control moved things from their hearts to their heads. They were in charge. They deserved their portion of the “profits.” They, little by little, came to see themselves living above the Law.

Lord, first of all, may we all be diligent in keeping ourselves true to You – striving to immerse ourselves in the Bible and spending quality time in Your presence. Then may we fervently pray for those who lead us. May we pray for their purity of heart. May we not hesitate to come to them if realignment is necessary for their lives. May we do so in Your love but may we not shy from the responsibility. And Lord, if they will not change may we not hesitate to remove ourselves from their influence of our lives.

Help us to seek Your face and to live pure and holy lives in Your power and strength. Amen.

Mar 17th, Fri, 6:33 am

Chased in My Dreams

This is my day for getting things done, Father. I would ask that You would place Your hand upon my shoulder. Direct my thoughts and actions to what You would have me do. Amen.

I’m not exactly sure what triggers them but quite regularly I have very realistic dreams…and last night was one of those nights. Something I ate may have caused me to dream but I have no idea what caused me to dream what I dreamed.

I guess it could be considered a “horror” type story line in that I was trying to escape from others trying to get me. One scene involved Karen and me in a fairly large, dimly lit room where we were sitting at a table with lots of other people sitting at tables.

Suddenly I jumped up and told Karen that we needed to get out of there. Others in the group were deceptively dressed in white attire and I heard voices saying, “We are dark, we need to get the light!” It was very obvious that they wanted me “dark” and not “light.” And then even more alarming was the fact that Karen was after me, too!

Now, it sounds quite silly but lying in my bed in the darkness of night, I couldn’t shake the feeling of foreboding. And to be honest, I looked over at Karen’s sleeping body more than once. It actually came to the point where I needed to pray about it because that was all I could think about!

Lord, as my fears began to diminish, I began to think of how in reality I am in a contest of sorts where I am a representative of “Light” (You) in a very legitimate battle against the “dark.” I don’t necessarily have people trying to convert me to the dark but my world sure does put forth a lot of effort and many of those things, as I’ve referred to many times, are not “flesh and blood enemies” but we are “fighting against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.” Ephesians 6:12

Lord, today and in the days ahead help me. Sometimes I am weak. And even when I am strong, they can still get me. Help me to stand with my hand in Yours. That’s the only place where I am sure to be victorious!

Mar 16th, Thurs, 7:01 am

The Importance of His Word

Father, I may have a general idea of what this day may hold but only You know the specifics. Whatever this day brings may I follow Your lead. May the relationship I have with You show through and may those around me know I am Yours. Amen.

2 Peter 1:16-21 (<<click here)

The Bible…Scripture…Your Holy Word. Lord, has there ever been a time when it has not been a point of contention? There have been so many attempts to discredit it from so many angles. It is not a collection of “clever stories.” It is not a bunch of fables and fairytales. For many, because they feel that parts are unbelievable they discard the entirety as unreliable. Others instead just pick and choose what the will or will not believe and adhere to.

I myself believe in You with all my being and so believe what You have said with the same fervency. Peter very strongly asserts that Your word is undeniable. He experienced You, Lord, first hand and with Peter and James on the mountain heard the Father’s voice proclaim, “This is my dearly loved Son, who brings me great joy.” (Matthew 17:5; Mark 9:7; Luke 9:35) He goes on to assert, “Because of that experience, we have even greater confidence in the message proclaimed by the prophets.” 2 Peter 1:19a

Your words, Lord, “are like a lamp shining in a dark place—until”…You “the Morning Star shines in [our] hearts.” And Scripture is very clear that we “must realize that no prophecy in Scripture ever came from the prophet’s own understanding, or from human initiative. No, those prophets were moved by the Holy Spirit, and they spoke from God.” vs.19b-21

I love how you bring so many things together to show me the truth of who You are. In my reading of my devotional Our Daily Bread for this day, the closing Insight for this day had this to say,

The truth of God’s intimate care for us is grounded in God’s self-revelation, the Bible. In the Discovery Series booklet, How Can I Know God through His Book? David Egner writes, “Although the Bible was written by men like Moses and Luke and Paul, it is the self-revelation of God. He is the Author behind the authors. And what He says reflects who He is. To know God we have to read His book;…to see Him on every page, above every event, in every place and circumstance, and overseeing the choice of every person who makes his way into the sacred pages of biblical history.”

Lord, may I cherish and honor Your word and live out its precepts every day. Amen

Mar 15th, Wed, 6:57 am

Doing it right for once.