Tag Archives: faithful

Grow

A full weekend but a good weekend! Thank You, Father, for Your watching over us in our travels. Thank You for Your presence. Thank You for the love You have given us and the love we have for each other. I pray for Your guiding hand throughout the up-and-coming week. Amen.

Revelation 2:19 (<<click green)

One of the most important aspects of our relationship with You, Lord, is that we are to grow. We should be having “constant improvement” in the areas of love…faith…service, and…patient endurance.”

My study Bible* reminds me that, “Because the times are critical, we must spend our days wisely and faithfully.” Lord, do I do that? In a recent sermon, I reminded my congregations that You have given every one of us exactly 86,400 seconds to use at our discretion. Do we use them “wisely and faithfully”?

I realize that we all need down time but It can be easy to accomplish nothing with the time we have. Others can run from sun up to sundown busying themselves with all kinds of things. But if we are not seeking “constant improvement” in the areas of “love…faith…service, and…patient endurance” what good is it all?

Lord, help me today to examine what I do and how I do it. May the many aspects of my life be pleasing in Your sight. Help me to conscientiously be moving forward in my relationship with You. “Because the times are critical” may I be constantly be seeking Your directive in every facet of my life. Amen.

*Life Application Study Bible New Living Translation

July 17th, Mon, 6:52 am

No Wedges

Father, I am grateful that I have You in my life. You are loving, correcting, forgiving, supporting, patient, and kind. That list could go on and on. You are there for me in absolutely every aspect of my life. I never have to seek You out for You are always with me. I am truly blessed!

Revelation 2:12-16 (<<click green)

This passage, Lord, has a timely message for all believers not just when it was written but throughout every age. The world offers so many enticements and we are tempted to experience every one of them. Those around us, who are of the world, go on and on about how wonderful and fulfilling they all are but…it is a lie.

The Apostle John states in 1 John 2:15-17,

Do not love this world nor the things it offers you… For the world offers only a craving for physical pleasure, a craving for everything we see, and pride in our achievements and possessions. These are not from the Father, but are from this world.And this world is fading away, along with everything that people crave. But anyone who does what pleases God will live forever.

Lord, You said that the city of Pergamum was a “city where Satan has his throne.” The city was the center of worship for not just one but four “gods” and was full of all kinds of enticements. Like our world, one could probably not turn a single corner without finding some kind of lure that would lead them away from You, Lord.

You have called us to love our neighbors as ourselves (Leviticus 19:18, Matthew 22:39) but that does not mean we are to do what they do. We are to love them in spite of their actions…the same as You do for us.

Lord, help me to stand up against the enticements that this world offers and to see them for what they are…empty…and deadly – for they just want to drive a wedge between You and me. Enable me to remain faithful to You. Only with Your help can I succeed. Amen.

July 9th, Sun, 6:23 am

Life…but a Prelude to Eternity

Good evening, Father. Sleeping in a little this morning makes for a time of writing tonight. Thank You for Your guiding hand in all that was accomplished today – most everything is ready for Sunday. Thank You, too, for bringing everything together to be able to enjoy a drum and bugle corps rehearsal at the local football stadium tonight. It was a lot of fun!

Revelation 2:10-11 (<<click green)

Lord, reading through this verse again makes me think of death. Many in our world have this mindset that death is the end. We have to live this life to the fullest because it’s the only one we get. But the older I get and the more time I spend with You, I realize that this life is but a prelude and a short one at that.

Death…it is inevitable. We cannot avoid it. Most of us will not know when it will arrive but we know it undoubtedly will. And though we know these things, will we be ready? Verse 10 states that “…if [we] remain faithful even when facing death, [You] will give [us] the crown of life.”

Verse 11 then goes on to say that, “Anyone with ears to hear must listen to the Spirit and understand what he is saying to the churches. Whoever is victorious will not be harmed by the second death.”

What is this “second death”? It is an eternal separation from God.

Each person will have their chance to accept Your generous offer of forgiveness. Scripture seems pretty clear that our opportunity to do so lies in this lifetime alone. Hebrews 9:27 states that “each person is destined to die once and after that comes judgment…” Then we will stand before You. We will have no other choice. Romans 14:11 states, “‘As surely as I live,’ says the Lord, ‘every knee will bend to me, and every tongue will declare allegiance to God.’”

Lord, may I be diligent in declaring Your Word to those in my realm of influence. Time is short. Our prelude to eternity will only last so long. And then we all will stand before You and we all will be called upon to give an answer of what we did with You. Enable me to be faithful to the end of my days. Amen.

July 6th, Thurs, 9:35 am

Ready to Suffer?

Father, what will this day hold? Only You know. The plan is getting things done here at home, lunch with Karen, have my phone checked out, and an 8-hour closing shift at Kohl’s before heading back home. Yes, that is the plan but only You know for sure and You know the particulars. Father, my day is Yours. May I be faithful and true to You in whatever circumstances I find myself. Amen.

1 Peter 4:1-3 (<<click here)

Lord, as I read this passage I have to honestly ask myself if I am “ready to suffer.” You suffered physical pain. The pain You suffered wasn’t punishment for wrongdoing – though that was the intent of the religious leaders of Your day. All of humanity was in debt to sin – we all owed but none, not one of us, could pay. The wages of our sin was death (Romans 6:23) – but You took on our debt and You paid it in full by Your suffering and death. When we accept Your gift of salvation that debt is eradicated and we are reconciled in our relationship with You.

You created us knowing You would have to suffer but in all honesty am I “ready to suffer” for You? I am no different than anyone else; I don’t seek out pain. If I have anything to say about it, I avoid pain and suffering. But just as truly, I believe I would take a bullet for a loved one, I would suffer for You, Lord. Because of all You’ve done for me, it’s the least I can do. Because You love me the way You do, I must stand for You. I pray for Your strength and wisdom and courage. Only You know the particulars of what my life holds. My life is Yours. May I be faithful and true to You in whatever circumstances I find myself. Amen.

Feb 1st, Wed, 6:14 am

We Can’t Know the Future

I am so grateful for Your presence in worship yesterday, Father. You multiplied what was given several times over! It was surely a privilege to be Your mouthpiece.

One of the concepts mentioned yesterday, Lord, as we studied the life of Joseph in Genesis was the fact that all-in-all we cannot see what lies ahead in our lives. We are to trust in Your guiding hand on our shoulders but no matter how much we would like to, we cannot see what our future holds.

Joseph had his heart set on You. His father loved him more than his many brothers and doted on him. Josephs own dreams seemed to point to a day when they all would bow before him. His brothers so greatly despised him that they refrained from killing but did end up selling him into slavery. God blessed him in these circumstances and he rose to prominence in his master’s home. Because of a false accusation he was thrown in to prison but once again God blessed him and he rose to prominence under the leadership of the prison warden. He thought he found a way out when he helped one of Pharaoh’s servants understand that he would find favor in Pharaoh’s eyes once more but was forgotten and left to continue to rot in jail.

Time and again he would work his way to the top only to be pushed back to the bottom. It would have been easy to become bitter or to have simply given up…but he didn’t. He clung to You, Lord. His destiny was in Your hands. He remained faithful to You and You brought him through and used him to literally save the lives of thousands of people from the surety of starvation.

Could Joseph see where his life was headed? No, he just continued to trust You, Lord. He was greatly rewarded for his faithfulness. He was given power and wealth. He was reunited with his family – holding no animosity toward his brothers – for he saw God’s saving hand through it all. But…he didn’t know any of it was coming to him.

As we watched his life unfold, his faith in God was unwavering. Through all the ups and downs, he held on to You. If he had ended his days serving the warden in the jail, with none of his hopes and dreams fulfilled, I believe he would have remained faithful to God.

Lord, we really have no idea what our future holds but, without a doubt, we can trust You to bring us through and with our faith placed in You we can be content in whatever circumstances we find ourselves. May I find peace in You. May I be used by You. Amen

Jan 23rd, Mon, 6:41 am