Posts Tagged ‘God’

God Is a Rock

June 8, 2014

God Is A Rock

 

2 Samuel 22:2-3: The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my savior; my God is my rock, in whom I find protection. He is my shield, the strength of my salvation, and my stronghold, my high tower, my savior, the one who saves me from violence.

 

Have you ever come upon a huge rock – in the forest, by a lake, or in your back yard? How do you feel when you stand on that rock? Doesn’t it give you a feeling of solidity – like no one could knock you off?

 

The Bible calls God our rock because like a rock, we feel strong when we stand on him. A rock seems powerful, centered, unmovable. No matter how much blasting and hitting someone might do, that rock won’t budge.

 

God is our rock. When we stand on him, we find stability, security, strength. He won’t move. He’s powerful, and like a rock, no one could overcome him.

 

God is your rock in three ways:

 

1. He provides stability and strength. You won’t be defeated or overwhelmed when you’re standing on him.

 

2. He shelters you in the storm. Ever sit under a ledge of rock in a rainstorm? It’s comfortable, dry, safe. God is like that. He gives us safety in the storm.

 

3. He cannot be moved by others. Real rocks can be dislodged or broken up. But not God. He’s a rock the size of the universe.

 

Stand on the rock today. Feel its power. Feel its safety. You can be sure no one will be able to knock you off this rock!

 

Prayer: Father, you are my rock and I will stand on you forever. Amen.

God Honors Kindness

May 29, 2014

God Honors Kindness

 

2 Samuel 9:7: But David said, “Don’t be afraid! I’ve asked you to come so that I can be kind to you because of my vow to your father, Jonathan.”

 

The new guy rolled into the office in a wheelchair. Several employees simply avoided him. But Cal walked over and introduced himself. “I’m Cal Thurston,” he said. “What’s your name?”

 

The crippled man held out a bony, gnarled hand. “I’m Steve.”

 

Soon they were good friends. Cal wheeled Steve wherever he needed to go, and Steve felt like a king.

 

A similar thing happened long ago in Israel. David could have killed Mephibosheth. After all, he was an enemy. King Saul fought against David every step of his life after David became famous. But David had sworn to his best friend, Jonathan, that he would take care of his children.

 

Mephibosheth was crippled. He certainly couldn’t lead a troop against David’s army. He might try to rally the people behind him in the name of Jonathan and King Saul. But he had no interest in that. He simply wanted to survive.

 

David showed kindness to Mephibosheth. He gave the young man a place at his table. He honored the youth with friendship and grace. God ultimately rewarded David for his kindness, too.

 

God loves kindness. Who can you be kind to today?  

 

Prayer: Father, teach me to be a kind person to everyone. Amen.

A Throne Forever

May 27, 2014

Your Throne Forever

 

2 Samuel 7:16: “Your dynasty and your kingdom will continue for all time before me, and your throne will be secure forever.'”

 

 

God made a tremendous promise to King David. He told him that his kingdom would never end, it would be the final and great kingdom of the world.

 

When you read the Bible, though, you find that King David’s line did end. When Israel was taken into slavery by Babylon, no king would ever sit on David’s throne again. Other nations would rule over Israel for centuries.

 

Was God’s promise wrong? Did God make a mistake?

 

Actually, God saw things from a different perspective. He knows the end from the beginning, and a few centuries without a king was no problem. Why? Because the kingdom God had spoken about was Jesus’ kingdom. Jesus, a descendant of David through both Joseph and Mary, will one day reign on King David’s throne. His kingdom will never have an end.

 

Many times in the Bible, things do not look quite right if we study them from a human perspective. But when we see the meaning and truth as God sees it, we discover that God was right all along.

 

When you think you’ve found a contradiction or problem in the Bible, don’t despair. Sometimes the answer isn’t right on the surface. You have to dig deep to see what God really meant.

 

Prayer: Jesus, may I always trust your word as the truth. Amen.

Bathed in God’s Glory

May 18, 2014

God In His Temple

 

Exodus 40:38: The cloud of the LORD rested on the Tabernacle during the day, and at night there was fire in the cloud so all the people of Israel could see it.

 

Moses often talked with God in the tent of meeting. He spoke face to face with God, the Bible says, though he did not see the physical face of God(he couldn’t). The Bible means they spoke directly, straightforwardly, without deception.

 

When Moses came out of a session talking to God, his face glowed. Why did that happen? Because it was like what happens to us when we are close to a fire. Our face and body get warm. In the firelight, our faces might appear to glow.

 

The glow Moses had stuck with him, though. So when he came out of the temple, everyone looked away from his face. It was bright, like the sun.

 

Why did this happen? Because spending time in the presence of God is like sitting by a hot fire. You come away joyful, filled with the Spirit. In some ways, you might even glow. God’s presence like that does many things. It warms us, making us feel secure and protected. It cleanses us, so that we become clean in his eyes. It comforts us in the coldness of the night, so that we know we’re not alone.

 

Those were all reasons that Moses became such a powerful leader of Israel. The presence and nearness of God made him feel strong and never alone. One day we will all bask in the presence of God, seeing him face to face. His love, comfort and care will keep us warm and happy through all eternity.

 

Prayer: Lord, let me draw near to you to live in your presence and warmth. Amen.

Who God Really Is

May 14, 2014

Who God Really Is

 

Exodus 34:6: He passed in front of Moses, and said, “I am the LORD, I am the LORD, the merciful and gracious God. I am slow to anger and rich in unfailing love and faithfulness.”

 

Who is God really? The big guy in charge of the world? Someone who demands that we worship and love him, or he’ll send us to hell? An all-powerful person who supposedly can do anything, but mostly doesn’t?

           

We all have many ideas about who God is and what he is like. One of the best pictures is found here in Exodus 34. Here, God told Moses exactly what he was like. What was that?

 

Compassionate. God understands where we hurt and he feels that hurt with us. He wants only to help us and make us feel safe in the world.

 

Gracious. God has many gifts. He owns the whole world. And his grace means he wants to give those gifts to all of us. He wants to make eternity in heaven one huge Christmas celebration.

 

Slow to anger. You may think God gets angry easily, but he really doesn’t. If he ever got truly angry with us, where would we be? But God is slow to anger. He is constantly patient, giving us the time and opportunity to change.

 

Abounding in lovingkindness. God is full of love. 1 John 4:16 says he is love itself. “God is love.” He wants to pour out h is love on each of us.

 

Does that give you a better picture of who God is?

 

Prayer: Lord, I praise you that you are the greatest of all, and I trust you. Amen.

God’s Glory

May 8, 2014

God’s Glory

 

Exodus 24:17: The Israelites at the foot of the mountain saw an awesome sight. The awesome glory of the LORD on the mountaintop looked like a devouring fire.

 

What would it look like if God suddenly appeared on the street, or in your classroom, or at the front of the church? What do you think it would be?

 

A ball of fire?

 

A thick cloud or fog?

 

A giant face?

 

A bolt of lightning?

 

A planet?

 

God did appear to people long ago. Not himself, but his glory. What is his glory? It’s the aspect of God that makes him most impressive, most powerful, most beautiful in our eyes. In Israel’s day, his glory was like the verse above describes – a consuming fire on top of the mountain. That’s a fire that burns up everything in its path. It’s totally awesome and inspiring. No one can stand before it.

 

One day, the book of Revelation (Rev. 22:4) says we will see God’s face. No one has any idea what that will look like. But it will be an awesome moment, don’t you think?

 

Something to look forward to in heaven!

 

Prayer: Lord, I’d like to see you, but let others see you in my life. Amen.

Trouble

May 1, 2014

Trouble!

 

Exodus 5:22: So Moses went back to the LORD and protested, “Why have you mistreated your own people like this? Why did you send me?”

 

Trouble happens to everyone. Sooner or later, trouble will invade your life. Work, school, church, your family, your friends. Trouble finds us all.

 

In Moses’ day, God had commanded the leader to barter with Pharaoh(the king of Egypt) and lead the Jews out of slavery. Moses, after trying to get out of the whole thing, finally went along with God. When Moses appeared before Pharaoh, things got worse. Pharaoh told Moses to get out of his palace, and then he ordered that the Jews make bricks without straw. This was a dire problem, because without straw the bricks were much harder to make through holding the clay together.

 

When Moses got back to the Jewish leaders, they screamed at him. How could he do this to them? What was he thinking?

 

Moses ran into his tent and asked God to fire him. “How could you do this to ME?” he cried.

 

In the end, though, God showed Moses he was completely in charge. He made it possible for the Jews to escape from Egypt, but only after more trouble resulted.

 

Having troubles is not always a bad thing. God sometimes sends them for one reason: so we’ll run to God and ask for his help. Do you have trouble today? Maybe you need to go to God and get some divine help!

 

Prayer: Father, let me never forget that you are there to help me. Amen.

Who is WITH you?

April 27, 2014

 

Who is WITH you?

 

Genesis 39:2: The LORD was with Joseph and blessed him greatly as he served in the home of his Egyptian master.

 

Joseph in the Book of Genesis made some big mistakes as a boy. Number one, his father loved him more than his other brothers, and Joseph let everyone know about it. He even wore a special coat, showing how important he was. Joseph also dreamed great dreams that made him look like a god and his brothers like slaves. That just made everyone angry. Eventually, Joseph’s brothers came up with a plot and sold Joseph into slavery.

 

As you read the rest of the story of Joseph, you’ll be amazed. Every time someone threw a curve to Joseph and got him into trouble, Joseph seemed to make the most of it. He ended up on top even though it seemed everyone was trying to put him down.

           

Why did this happen? The Bible reveals one basic reason: God was with him.

 

Do you sense that God is with you? How can you tell? Several ways. One, you’ll defeat temptation more than you’ll give in to it. Two, you’ll experience joy and peace in your heart. Three, you’ll see some success in life, and you’ll know it’s not just because of you. It’s because God opened the door and led you through.

 

If you’re a Christian, God is with you. He will lead, help and encourage you every step of the way. So trust him.

 

Prayer: Father, I praise you that you’re with me. Keep me thinking about it. Amen.

God Provided

April 22, 2014

God Provided the Sacrifice

 

Genesis 22:8: “God will provide a lamb, my son,” Abraham answered. And they both went on together.

 

Imagine this situation. One day your old father comes into your room. “Come with me,” he says. “God has asked me to do something important.”

 

He takes you out to a high hill. There, he ignites a fire and soon flames shoot up from the wood. Then he asks for your hands. You stick them out. He ties them up, and then ties up your feet. “What are you doing?” you ask.

 

“God wants me to sacrifice you on the fire to prove I really love him,” your dad says.

 

You are terrified. Your dad helps you up. He’s about to throw you on the flames, when God stops him. “Here,” God says, “here’s a loaf of bread you can put into the fire. But now I know you really believe.”

 

Crazy – right? But it actually happened. God told Abraham to sacrifice his son to prove his faith. At the last minute, God provided a ram to use instead.

 

God has also provided the perfect sacrifice for everyone. No one ever need fear that God will ask this again. Jesus was the sacrifice, and when we believe in him we prove our faith. Have you proven yours by believing in Jesus? If not, do so today!

 

Prayer: Father, thank you that Jesus died for me. I do believe. Amen.

Out of Money

April 21, 2014

Out of Money

 

what can I do now

the money is gone

the accounts are empty

I have some gold

some silver in the

safe deposit box

it will not last long

I can’t get a job

I’ve applied everywhere

the recession remains

the market is empty

we eat we drink we sleep

but how long can it last

if I can’t pay the mortgage

if I can’t pay for groceries

if we really come to bottom

dead bottom

nowhere to look to but up

where will You and I be

when we reach that passageway

my parents are gone

the inheritance is spent
no one to go to

am I one of those who must

go to the church and beg

for a few cans of food

please I need You to say something

give me some assurance

give me something strong

and hard

and sure

to hold onto

yet I feel You say nothing

why are You so often silent

why do You look at us

know all we do

all we say

and You remain unmoved

seemingly uncaring

like David said

how long O Lord

will You forget me forever

You are love

it says in 1 John

twice

where is it in my days

where can I grasp it

my children look up to me

I’m hungry Daddy

I need some new clothes Daddy

I love you Daddy

but I hurt so bad

we have never been in this place

no money at all

I feel broken and forsaken

and deserted

all those things

You said you would never

forsake or desert me

You would never

do the things the world does

to the lost

You would never do to me your child

or any of Your children

the things I have seen

families taken to the end

believers murdered in Iran

and North Korea

I know

I know You say You are with us

to the end

but the world teems with

broken forsaken hurting Christians

what am I to do then

after the last check is written

the last dime cast to the cashier

the last hope dying

before my eyes

I’m sorry to complain

I don’t do it much

but sometimes I just

have to blurt it out

this is serious

where are You God

where the heck are You