YOU MAY HAVE A BLIND SPOT IF – – (Part 2)


Proverbs 27:6 – “Faithful are the wounds of a friend, but deceitful are the kisses of an enemy.” NASB

Yesterday I asked regarding blind spots and our Christian walk – “Are You Consistent?”  Today I want to ask more questions beginning with the following:

ARE YOU SELF-CONTROLLED?

Romans 8:28 (Phillips) – “Moreover we know that to those who love God, who are called according to His Plan, everything that happens fits into a pattern for good.”

This verse does not say that everything that happens is good.  It says that it will ultimately work for the good. Its focus is on the finished product not the process and incidents along the way.  One of the greatest pieces of evidence, of our walk in the Holy Spirit, is the Fruit of the Spirit in our lives and those include self-control and temperance.  Have you ever asked yourself why it is a mark of distinction to manifest a controlled life?  What is self-control? What happens when self-control is taken to the extreme?

Self-control referenced in the Bible is the quality of abiding or resting in the Lord.  When our entire world is being torn apart, tensions and trials are raging, and men’s hearts are failing them for fear of what they see or perceive is happening or going to the Holy Spirit enables the believer to demonstrate a sense of peace and tranquility that surpasses human understanding.  It is trust in God’s Promises and Resting in them. 

One of the reasons a leader or anyone needs to exhibit self-control is Stability.  People are looking for and longing for Stability and Reality in life.  When the storms of life rage we need stability and that will come with self-control or Spirit Control.

Remember Peter’s reminder of Jesus’ words in 1 Peter 5:7where we are counseled to ‘cast all our cares or anxieties upon Him because He cares for us.’  Jesus said in Mathew 11:28-20 that we can come to Him, and He will give us rest.  As believers, we need to overwhelm the world with our calmness and tranquility during turmoil.

DO YOU THINK INDEPENDENTLY?

Palms 1:1 –“How blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the path of sinners, nor sit in the seat of scoffers!”

People who study such matters tell us that the real key as to whether a person conforms to the pressure of the group or resists peer pressure is whether it comes from that person’s inner personal convictions or from the external mores of his peer group.  An individual with a strong healthy self-image and confidence in God will more readily resist negative peer pressure than one who does not have those attributes.  It takes strength to say NO! 

There are two groups who cannot or do not think for themselves.  The Classic Conformist and the Classic Non-Conformist.  Some people have a convoy mentality. Their life is lived by simply following the directions of the crowd and we all know how dangerous that can be. 

In Psalms 1 three words need to be considered, “Walk, Stand, Sit”.  This demonstrates a progression away from godly principles.  The Psalmist indicates that walking, standing, and sitting are deliberate choices.  Once we have broken the first barrier of walking it is easier to feel comfortable standing with sinners and once, we accept their mindset we can easily and comfortably sit with them.

May God be with you as you go through your day!

YOU MAY HAVE A BLIND SPOT IF…


Proverbs 27:6 – “Faithful are the wounds of a friend, but deceitful are the kisses of an enemy.” NASB

Have you ever taken a trip with six or seven people in a small car?  Even a short trip can seem like an endless journey when you are packed in like sardines.  I recall a friend telling of taking a trip in a small economy car with his family – six of them packed into that small vehicle. 

He related the trip saying that he was unable to see through the back glass using the rearview mirror.  They were so packed in, and it was an exercise in futility to try to get the children to all move in unison.  He had to completely trust his son to advise him when it was safe to change lanes and his son realizing how difficult it was for the dad to trust him said, “Dad, you have to believe me.  This is a real lesson in trust.” 

The boy was the dad’s eyes. He was able to fill in the blind spots because he could see things from a better perspective.  All of us have Blind Spots and need someone else to help us find them.

Our family and friends often see things in our lives from a clearer or different perspective than we do.  We sometimes become aware of our blind spots as we see those same things in others.  This was possibly the situation when Nathan the prophet went to David the king to point out his blind spot.  Nathan used the approach of relating a supposed real incident to David and enable David to see for himself what his blind spot was.

One would think that Nathan’s story would have been unnecessary.  How could a man cause the death of another without realizing the depravity of his own heart?  Sadly, that is where David was.  Maybe it was out of a sense of entitlement, I do not know, but in the story of David taking Uriah’s wife Bathsheba, and having Uriah killed in battle is a horrific story of how a man like David can descend into the trap of sin. 

Nathan used a third-person story to get David’s attention and told of a rich man who had many sheep and a poor man who had only one.  When Nathan told David how the rich man had stolen the poor man’s singular sheep David was furious and declared that the guilty party should be put to death.  At that point, Nathan pointed his finger in David’s face and said, “You are the man!”  David immediately recognized his blind spot and sin and cried out in repentance. 

In saying this I must ask several questions as we seek to deal with our own blind spots and move forward into what God would have us become.

ARE YOU CONSISTENT?

James 1:8 tells us that a ‘double-minded’ man is unstable in all his ways.  I am reminded of an account a preacher told me years ago. It was a time when God taught him the importance of consistency. 

I heard a man relate an experience that hammered home this truth.  He was rushing home after having dropped off some of their children at school and in the back seat was his youngest son.  He was anxious to get home to attend to other things and began speeding down the highway.  The child spoke up and said, “Dad you are going 75 miles an hour!”  It took him by surprise because he didn’t think the child could read the speedometer but trying to conceal his surprise he said, “So what?”  The little boy said, “But the speed limit is 55”  

At that moment, the Holy Spirit began to minister to his heart, and he realized that it was in his heart that he could do wrong so long as he did not get caught and it was okay.  He was, by his actions, teaching his child a double standard, and conviction gripped him.  He was teaching his son that it was okay to say one thing and yet do another.

For most adults speeding is not a big deal but for a young child in the developmental stages of life it is breaking the law and therefore wrong – CUT and DRIED!  It is a double standard and if we can do it there why not everywhere?

I have more questions to pose but will stop there and pray that God will grant you a great day and help you to be CONSISTENT!  

I pray the rich and bountiful Blessings upon you today!

RIGHTLY HANDLING STRESS and PRESSURE LEADS TO PEACE – – (Part 2)


Psalms 46 – – Please read.

Philippians 4:6-7 – “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7 And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” NASB

Picking up where we left off yesterday, I have found that Psalms 46 contains a powerful message for daily living.  It was born in the context of extreme stress and pressure. It is a healing balm for all who are bowed down under the load of the cares of life. 

In church history, it is reported that Martin Luther, a man constantly under pressure and satanic attack, found Psalms 46 to be an incredibly powerful source of comfort and peace and penned the words of a hymn: “A Mighty Fortress Is Our God, A Bulwark Never Failing.”

In the first verse of the Psalm, we find the theme of the Psalm – “God is our instant help when we are in a tight squeeze.”  The word trouble in Hebrew means ‘to be restricted, to be tied up in a narrow and cramped place.’  That calls to mind the old expression – “Between a rock and a hard place.”

Stress means that I am being pressed and pressured.  I am being squeezed.  When stress is doing a number on us is when we need to heed the words of the Psalmist that “God is our refuge and strength.”  It is when you are stressed, pressured, and squeezed that you need to recognize the weakness of your humanity and the infiniteness of His Power!  It is in the midst of our troubles that God is building a tent of refuge where He can bring us in out of the storm and refresh our spirits.

This Psalm notes three specific situations and offers to console in those times:

  • Natural Calamities – – [vv. 1-3]

When these come the reaction is “I will not fear!”

  • Civil Disturbances – – [vv. 4-7]

The city is under attack.  The reaction is – “God is in the midst of her, she will not be moved.”

  • Post Battle Fatigue – – [vv. 8-11]

‘Cease striving and know that I am God” Therefore the reaction is “I will not strive!”

This is about conquering fear and even if the earth should change mountains should quake, and fire should roar out of control – – God is our bridge over troubled waters!  He should be but too often we do not recognize this aspect of His promise and power and crumble under the stress and pressure.

Isaiah 41:10 – “Do not fear, for I am with you; do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God.”

2 Timothy 1:7 – “For God has not given us the Spirit of Timidity (fear), but of power and love and discipline (sound mind).”

Joshua 1:9 – “Be strong and very courageous.”

Psalms 27:1 – “The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall, I fear?  The Lord is the defense (strength) of my life; whom shall I dread?”

Psalms 27:10 – “For my father and my mother have forsaken me, but the Lord will take me up.”

Elvis Presley popularized the term “All Shook Up.”  Elvis grew up dirt poor in a little Mississippi town.  He had little encouragement and no special skill as far as the workplace was concerned.  At the age of 18, making $14 per week as a truck driver he decided to make a record and you know the rest of the story.  He became the best-paid male entertainer in American history.  Elvis said shortly before he died that he would give $1 Million for one week of normal life and peace.  Money will not relieve stress.  Fame will not cure the pressures of stress.  The only cure is GOD!  

Therefore, as you enter this day, I pray that God will help you to cease striving and relax in Him.  May God be with you as you go through your day!

RIGHTLY HANDLING STRESS and PRESSURE LEADS TO PEACE…


Psalms 46 – – Please read.

Philippians 4:6-7 – “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7 And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” NASB

I would venture to say that more people are suffering under the heavy burden of stress and pressure today than in any other generation.  Increasingly people are facing physical, emotional, and spiritual disorders in their lives because of the unbelievably face paced, pressure-packed way of living that is the norm in our present world.  Stress and Pressure are two common, constant companions of many in the church and the world. 

Several years ago, I saw something in a Children’s Book that was too close to reality for comfort but hilarious at the same time.  The book was by Judith Viorst entitled, “Alexander And The Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day.”  The account was:

“Alexander [7 or 8] had one of those days!  Nothing goes right.  He has back-to-back-to-back disappointments and tragedies like no one can believe.  His day is one continuous predicament after another.  In short, he cannot win for losing!  When he awoke in the morning, he found that he had gone to sleep with gum in his mouth and now it was in his hair.  When he got out of bed he tripped on his skateboard and by mistake dropped his sweater in the sink while the water was running.  So, he declared, “I can tell it is going to be a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day!”

After a terrible day at school, a horrible visit to the dentist, and a no-good stop at the shoe store, Alexander slumped in his chair at the dinner table and his troubles continue to mount.  He looked at the offering of food and there were lima beans and he hated lima beans, there was kissing on television, and he hated kissing, his bath was too hot, he got soap in his eyes, his marble went down the tub drain, and he had to wear his railroad train pajamas to be, and he hated those pajamas.  His Mickey Mouse night light burned out and he bit his tongue getting into bed.  The cat wanted to sleep with his brother not him, so he once again concludes – “This has been a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day!” 

Most of us have been there!  Humans are really strange creatures.  Have you ever wondered why we run or hurry about when we get lost?  Instead of regrouping and finding our way our senses tend to run in all directions, and we hurry, worry, and bury!  What we need to do is Stop and allow the Holy Spirit to take control and restore order to our lives.  We need to relearn that GOD is GOD!

Stress is a result of taking more on ourselves than God intended.  In a sense, we play God in the matter.  Dr. Thomas Homes of Washington University has done research into the problem of stress and published his findings in terms of “Life Changing Units.”  He gave them on a scale of 100 points.  Death of a spouse = 100 units.  Divorce = 73 units.  Pregnancy = 40 units.  Remodeling a home = 25 units, and Christmas = 12 units.  The conclusion was that from a strictly human viewpoint, no person in his own strength could handle 300 or more units in a 12-month period without suffering physically or emotionally and I add spiritually during the next 2 years!

In truth, if we are crippled by stress, we cannot be very useful to God, ourselves, or anyone else.  If we are crippled by stress, we cannot enjoy the simple pleasures of life.  Therefore, it is imperative that we learn “God’s Secrets of Handling Stress.”  You cannot avoid stress totally, but you can avoid being crippled by it.  As Paul says in Philippians 4:6 – “Be anxious for nothing….”  The converse of that is “Be content and at peace in everything.” 

I want to deal more with this briefly tomorrow but until then may God help you to rise above the chains of stress and rejoice! 

I pray that God’s Blessings and Peace will cover you like a glove as you go through your day!

ALERT:  WE NEED TO BE REMINDED OF GOD’S PROMISE(s)…


Isaiah 54:17 – “No weapon formed against you shall prosper, And every tongue which rises against you in judgment You shall condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD, And their righteousness is from Me,” Says the LORD.” NKJV

We live in a time that I believe qualifies for the biblical “Perilous Times” or “Last Days.”  It is, therefore, important to know from whence comes our help in the time of trouble.  In order to maintain our faith and our boldness, we have to believe that God is not only on our side but that He has committed Himself to defend and protect us.  If we do not have those things, then it is easy to see how one could lose heart and grow faint in their walk and labor for His Kingdom and opposing evil in the world.

This message is two-fold – – It has a definite Spiritual Side, but I admit that there is a Political or Survival Side to it too.  We are entering into a time, like never before.  We are entering an era when those of the Christian Faith are being attacked and will be attacked in the most vicious ways even to the point of facing or succumbing to death in the natural. 

We may, and many will be, called upon to face down kings as did the prophets of old in the Bible, and patriarchs in the New Testament.  We will find that even those of our own household, denomination, lifelong friends, business associates, and others will turn on us for our spiritual and even political stances for God and against evil.  It will not be pretty but as Elder Burton McCafferty used to say, “God can pull you through anything as long as you can stand the pull.”

The comfort that we have is one that was demonstrated time and again in the Bible by men and women of God who stood against insurmountable odds and almost unanimous opposition only to find that God came on the scene and fought their battle for them in a supernatural way.  Listen to what Isaiah says and take heart:

No Weapon Formed Against Us Shall Prosper.

It did not say some of the weapons but that No Weapon used against us will prosper.  Not a single one will be able to prosper if you are walking in the Light as He is in the Light.  If you are “seeking first the Kingdom of God and His Righteousness,” you can believe and expect that this passage will become reality in your life.  (Warning:  If you go off on your own without the direction of the Holy Spirit and the backing of God’s Word – BEWARE!)

Every Tongue That Rises Against Us In Judgement We Will Condemn.

Not only will God defend you but enable you to condemn the false tongues and accusations that come your way.  He will make you wise as serpents while being harmless as doves.  He will give you what to say in the very hour you need to say it.

The Promise is That This is the Heritage of the Servants of the Lord.

The reason for that, God says, is “Their Righteousness is from Me, says the LORD.’  If we walk in the righteousness of God and obedience to Him, we will find “divine protection” as we could never have dreamed of.

The truth is even if they “kill us” they have done nothing because it will simply be an early promotion to our Eternal Destiny in the Presence of the King of kings and Lord of lords!  Therefore, take heart, and refuse to live in fear of what is coming upon the earth. I fully believe that we are to work while it is yet day and do everything that we can to oppose evil and stand for God.  I believe that action may cost us our freedom, our possessions, and even our lives but we can face it knowing that even if they were to kill us, They Have Accomplished Nothing!

Therefore,I take this opportunity to remind you that you are “protected” with Divine Protection that is more sure and powerful than anything that Earth can produce.

May the Lord guide you as you go through this day in Him and bless you abundantly!

OUR GOD, IS THE GOD WHO IS UNCHANGING…


Malachi 3:6 – “For I am the LORD, I do not change;” NKJV

In violation of my normal policy of not using a portion of Scripture to make a point, I do so here.  I do so because I sense in my spirit that it is a needed word for many today.  There are times in life when many, if not most of us, wonder if the above statement is true or true in every case but ours. 

I know that would fall into the category of “self-pity,” but it is reality.  In those times we begin to listen to the voice of the enemy of our souls telling us that we have done too much, violated God’s plan, principles, precepts, or laws, and have been abandoned by God.  In our hearts we know it is a lie but if the situation persists long enough, we sometimes begin to listen and if we ever listen to the diabolical one, we are in trouble spiritually.  It opens the door to doubt, fear, and even reaction or action that leads us away from God and into the trap of the devil.

I am convinced that it would be a good thing to daily remind ourselves of the truth listed in the above verse that God Does Not Change!  We know that everything around us changes but God is the one constant in all existence that is absolutely constant!  He is Love and that Never changes.  He is Grace and that Never changes.  He is our Healer and that Never changes.  He is our Provider and that Never changes.  He is Everything That We Need and that Never Changes!  He is the “I AM THAT I AM.”  Therefore, no matter what you need HE IS.  No matter what struggle you face, are facing, or will face, He is the Solution!  He Does Not Change! 

His Word is absolutely sure!  He never lies or misrepresents anything!  He never distorts, twists, or confuses His children!  We become confused, distort what He has said, and twist His words but He did not do that, we did.  The reason we did is either because we listened to the devil, or we listened to our own selfish desires.  Either way, we stray from His designed path and to the ultimate victory, He has prepared.

As a human being, no matter how hard I try, I will fail.  I wish that were not true, but I have proven it too many times in my life.  That is not an excuse or even a feeble attempt at justification it is a fact.  I need Him more and more every day and so do you.  The one thing in life I am absolutely 100% sure of is that God Does Not Change! 

In that truth, I am also confident that “He is able to keep that which I have committed to Him against that day.”  I am also confident that “He will never leave me nor forsake me and will be with me to the end of the world.”  I am confident that He has ascended to the Right Hand of the Father to make intercession for me and is or has prepared a place for me to spend eternity with Him and will return for me one day.  It does not matter if that is via the natural process of physical death or through His supernatural appearance to take me home.  It does not matter I know that it is a fact and Does Not Change! 

Therefore, no matter what struggle you are facing today know that you have a loving God that “Does Not Change.”  He is touched by the feeling of your infirmities and is fully aware of your situation and cares and in His time and in His way, He will say Enough, and complete and total victory will be yours!  Whatever you do – Do Not Cast Away Your Confidence in Him!

May God bless you as you go through your day and week in Jesus!

WE MUST NOT BECOME ANOTHER SODOM…


Genesis 18:26-33 – So the LORD said, “If I find in Sodom fifty righteous within the city, then I will spare all the place for their sakes.” 27 Then Abraham answered and said, “Indeed now, I who am but dust and ashes have taken it upon myself to speak to the Lord: 28 Suppose there were five less than the fifty righteous; would You destroy all of the city for lack of five?” So He said, “If I find there forty-five, I will not destroy it.” 29 And he spoke to Him yet again and said, “Suppose there should be forty found there?” So He said, “I will not do it for the sake of forty.” 30 Then he said, “Let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak: Suppose thirty should be found there?” So He said, “I will not do it if I find thirty there.”  31 And he said, “Indeed now, I have taken it upon myself to speak to the Lord: Suppose twenty should be found there?” So He said, “I will not destroy it for the sake of twenty.” 32 Then he said, “Let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak but once more: Suppose ten should be found there?” And He said, “I will not destroy it for the sake of ten.” 33 So the LORD went His way as soon as He had finished speaking with Abraham; and Abraham returned to his place. “NKJV

Abraham asked God to spare the city for the sake of the righteous dwelling there.  He started with fifty and worked his way down to ten.  God agreed to spare the city if Ten Righteous could be found.  Abraham probably felt confident that this would not be a problem, but it was.  Even the members of Lot’s family rejected the Lord and as a result, only four people left the city, and Lot’s wife disobeyed and did not make the journey leaving only Tree – Lot and his two daughters.  What an indictment on any city!

I pray that America will not become another Sodom!  You can question my conviction regarding this, but I stand on the precepts of God’s Word.  Whenever God says that He hates and judges a particular sin, who am I to question that?  When the moral fiber demanded by God, is violated by a nation, a people, a family, or an individual there is a price to be paid.  It is my sincere prayer and concern that America will not reach, the point of debauchery and depravity that we become another Sodom, and Ten Righteous cannot be found in this nation or whatever number God should allow to be the cut off for staying the hand of judgment.

I do not mean to be self-serving, presumptuous, or self-righteous in what I am saying for I believe that God would find many more than Ten, but a little leaven leavens the whole lump and when we justify sin and make excuse for it, we tread dangerously on the precipice of judgment.  When a nation begins to legislate contrary to the revealed written Word of God it places its people in a perilous position and we are headed in that direction rapidly.

God has a standard that can only be met through the Blood of Jesus.  We could never hit the mark without the forgiveness and cleansing afforded in the Atonement.  In our flesh we all sin and fall short of the Glory of the Lord.  It is only as we allow the Blood to be applied to our lives and have our hearts Gen 18:32-33 – “Then he said, “Let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak but once more: Suppose ten should be found there?” And He said, “I will not destroy it for the sake of ten.” 33 So the LORD went His way as soon as He had finished speaking with Abraham; and Abraham returned to his place.” NKJV

We are all probably familiar with the account where Abraham interceded for Sodom and petitioned transformed through the new birth that we are able to live as Righteous before the Lord.  Then, it is not our righteousness for that is but filthy rags – it is His righteousness that presents us acceptable before the Throne of God.

Therefore, I would ask everyone to join me in continual intercession for this nation!  I believe that God has a purpose yet for America and if we continue down the path, we are on destruction will be the end.  The world needs an America that honors God, and His Word, and walks with a moral compass that is founded and grounded in God Himself.

May God bless you as you walk before Him with an honest heart and receive His mercy and grace daily!  Blessings abundantly!

WHO SAID THAT YOU HAVE TO FALL?


Jude 24-25 – “To him who is able to keep you from falling and to present you before his glorious presence without fault and with great joy- 25 to the only God our Savior be glory, majesty, power, and authority, through Jesus Christ our Lord, before all ages, now and forevermore! Amen.” NIV

In 2011, I had hip replacement surgery, and the next day after surgery they got me up to walk.  It was painful and difficult but something that had to be done.  There were two people near me at all times to ensure that I did not fall, and they also provided a walker to help me stabilize myself so that I could gingerly move across the floor.  They placed a strap around my waist and when I asked what that was for, they said, “So you won’t wind up on the floor.  It is to enable us to keep you from falling.”

I have thought about that since that time I realized that in a real sense that is what the Holy Spirit does in our lives to enable us to “Walk The Christian Walk” without stumbling or falling.  He wraps the Word of God around us and stands ever so near to ensure that if our footsteps are unstable or our ability to traverse the particular path before us is difficult, He upholds us to keep us from stumbling to prevent our fall.  Adam and Eve fell in the Garden due to disobedience but if you and I set our hearts to walk according to the Word of God and are sensitive to the direction of the Holy Spirit we Will Not Fall! 

God is not only able to keep us from falling but keeps us from falling. In a real sense, He presents us before the Father daily. One He will present us ultimately and finally before Him so that we can enter into the Eternal Joys of the Lord!  We should live every moment of every day with great rejoicing in that reality.  We should always be conscious that in our own strength, ability, and nature we would fail miserably and continue to be Mark Missers coming short of the Glory of God.  Yet, through Christ Jesus our Lord and the ministry of the Holy Spirit, we can go through this life without Falling!

While I do not want you to think of Him as a crutch, I do want you to think of Him as your ultimate support.  A crutch could become an excuse or a justification for not rising to the level of maturity that God desires, and we need but a support system is designed to enable us to do just that.

Therefore, if you are struggling to live the Christian Life maybe you are attempting to go it alone without the aid of the Word of God and the Spirit of God.  Instead of trying to go in your own willpower and strength “cast all your cares upon Him for He cares for you.” 

May the Lord bless you as you go through this day and week in Him.

WHAT HAVE WE TO BE THANKFUL FOR? – – Part Two…


1 Thessalonians 5:18 – In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Jesus Christ concerning you.”

Ephesians 5:20 – “Giving thanks always for all men to God the Father in the name of our LORD Jesus Christ.”

Colossians 3:17 – “And whatever you do in word or deed, do it in the name of our LORD Jesus Christ, giving thanks through him to God the Father.”

Now, shall we move to the second thing on my list of what we have to be thankful for? 

THE WORD OF GOD AND ALL ITS PROVISIONS.

We must never forget that the Word of God, the Bible is loaded with benefits, provisions, instructions, protections, and privileges that equip each believer for life.  Tragically, too often we allow ourselves to be robbed of what the Father has already provided for us.

Psalm 103:1-5 – “BLESS the LORD, O my soul; and all that is within me, bless his holy name.2 Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits,3 Who forgives all your iniquities, who heals all your diseases.4 Who redeems your life from destruction, who crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies,5 Who satisfies your mouth with good things, so that your youth is renewed like the eagles.”

God’s Word provides for life here and hereafter.  It is not just a Word it is the Inspired Word of God.  It is God-breathed.  It is as good as God Himself.

2 Timothy 3:16 –All scripture, written by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction and for instruction in righteousness”

2 Peter 1:21 – “For the prophecy did not come by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke when they were inspired by the Holy Spirit.”

It is the Infallible Word of God as Hebrews 13:8 declares, Jesus is the same eternally and Jesus is the Word!  It is the Indestructible Word of God.  In Matthew 24:35 we read, “Even heaven and earth will pass away, but my words shall not pass away.”  In Isaiah 40:8 we are advised, “Even heaven and earth will pass away, but my words shall not pass away.” Then in 1 Peter 1:25 we find, “But the word of our God endures forever. And this is the very word which has been preached to you.”    It is Infallible and Indestructible. 

We must also remember that it is Indispensable.  It is as vital to our spirit man as food is to the natural body.  Through the pages of God’s Word, we find provision for Salvation, Healing, Deliverance, Blessing, Guidance, and Protection.  We are to “Forget None of His Benefits.”  We should be thankful for such a word that has been provided for us.

FOR THE PROMISE OF JESUS’ RETURNING

I am going to possibly overload you with scripture to prove my point so get ready.

John 14:1-3 – “LET not your heart be troubled; believe in God, and believe in me also.2 In my Father’s house there are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going to prepare a place for you.3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and take you to me, so that where I am, you may be also.”

1 Thessalonians 4:15-18 – “For our LORD himself shall descend from heaven with a shout and the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet of God, and those who died in Christ will rise first.17 Then we, who are alive, and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet our LORD in the air: and so shall we ever be with our LORD.18 Wherefore comfort one another with these words.”

1 Corinthians 15:51:52 – “Behold, I tell you a mystery; We shall not all die, but we shall all be changed,52 In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.”

Philippians 3:20-21 – “But our labors are in heavenly things, from whence we look for our Savior, our LORD Jesus Christ,21 Who shall transform our poor body, to the likeness of his glorious body, according to his mighty power, whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself.”

This Promise is to those who are Born Again.  This Promise is to those who are Faithful.  The Blessed Hope is something to be incredibly Thankful for. We are not left comfortless, abandoned as orphans, but He is Coming Back!

Regardless of how the economy is, God is still God.

Regardless of how vile and sinful mankind may become, God is still God.

Regardless of the situation of the world, God is still God.

We have Hope in Christ!

We have much to be thankful for and more than we will ever thank Him for.  He brought Salvation to us because He Loves us.  He has given us His Word, to guide us.  He is coming back for us so that we can spend Eternity with Him. 

What Have We To Be Thankful For?  EVERYTHING!

God bless you as you enjoy your Thanksgiving weekend.  Have a Great Day!

WHAT HAVE WE TO BE THANKFUL FOR?


1 Thessalonians 5:18 – “In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Jesus Christ concerning you.”

Ephesians 5:20 – “Giving thanks always for all men to God the Father in the name of our LORD Jesus Christ.”

Colossians 3:17 – “And whatever you do in word or deed, do it in the name of our LORD Jesus Christ, giving thanks through him to God the Father.”

It would be an understatement to say that as Americans and as Christians, we are Blessed!  Things may be difficult now and from time to time, but we are Blessed!  The problem is that too few give consideration to our blessings and truly count their blessings.  That is what this devotional is designed to address and answer the title question, “What Have We To Be Thankful For?”

The Bible in 2 Timothy 3:1-5 and other places identifies a time in the Last Days when people would be unthankful, and ungrateful toward God and their fellow man.  It speaks of a time when people would be more interested in themselves, pleasure, possessions, and power than God and the things of God. 

It speaks of a time when people would be so filled with the desire to satisfy their ambitions, reach their goals, and fulfill the desires of their hearts they would have little time or interest in God and the things of God.  No time for Him, His Word, or His Worship.  It speaks of a time when churches and professing Christians would have a form of godliness but without power.

Unfortunately, too many times God has blessed His people with prosperity, and they prospered to the place where they forgot the source of their blessings.  It is a shame that too many only find time to express gratitude at Thanksgiving each year.  Once a year in November give lip service to blessings.  We must never forget that we are Blessed!

Now, to the question – “What Do We Have To Be Thankful For?”  Obviously, time would not permit, nor could the libraries of the world contain all that we have to be thankful for, individually or collectively.  Not to overuse this, but We Are Blessed!  We are a very Blessed People!

I would like to mention three (3) major things that we have to be thankful for and hope it resonates with you.

FOR THE LOVE THAT BROUGHT REDEMPTION

John 3:16 is such a familiar passage that too often it is quoted without actually thinking about what is promised and provided.  “For God – Who?  God the Creator of all things.  God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that WHOSOEVER believes on Him SHOULD NOT perish but have everlasting life.”  (Emphasis mine).  Notice it is whosoever believes and that they should not perish.  Believing alone is insufficient to enter in, it requires repentance of sin and confession that Jesus is the Christ.

Let’s walk through the condition of man from the Garden to the coming of Jesus.  Man began in innocence but through rebellion and disobedience fell and darkness fell on the race.  God gave the Law of Moses; the Torah and man could not fulfill it revealing the need for a Savior. 

Romans 3:23 – “For all have sinned and are short of the glory of God”

Galatians 3:22 – “But the scripture has included everything under sin, that the promise by the faith of Jesus Christ might be given to those who believe.”

God made man aware that the only provision was a sinless substitute to buy us back from the authority of the devil and made that provision in Jesus.  Man was hopelessly and helplessly lost.  He was doomed eternally, but Jesus came to give life!

Hebrews 9:23 – “It is necessary, therefore, that the patterns of things which are heavenly should be purified with these; but the heavenly things themselves, with sacrifices better than these.”

Matthew 26:28 – “It is necessary, therefore, that the patterns of things which are heavenly should be purified with these; but the heavenly things themselves, with sacrifices better than these.”

God, in the abundance and overflow of His Love, was willing to give the one thing that was required for our salvation.  He was willing to do what was necessary to give people who had turned against him the opportunity for restoration and regeneration.  John 3:16 became a reality and the door to salvation was opened.

God gave His Son, not just any son but the Only Begotten of the Father, the Lamb of God.  Jesus came freely and willingly to be our substitute and pay our debt. The Way of Redemption, the Only Was now open. The Door had come!

What Have We to Be Thankful For?   Jesus!  Salvation!  Love!

I will pause here and take this to the second reason in the next devotional.

God bless you and may your Thanksgiving be Awesome!  Have a Great Day and a Great Week!