Friday, July 21, 2017

Who Has Hardened Himself?

Scripture:

Job 9:4  "He is wise in heart, and mighty in strength: Who hath hardened himself against him, and prospered?"

Observation:

Job answered his friend who was giving him advice about why he was in the condition he was in.  He gives us his outlook on God.  He tells us God is wise in heart and mighty in strength.  He goes on to ask the question, "Who hath hardened himself against him, and prospered?"  He knew there was no sense hardening yourself toward God who is all-powerful.

Application:

Sometimes God doesn't do what we want Him to.  Sometimes God does things that don't make sense to us, or even hurt us.  We need to learn to be more like Job who realized it was useless to harden ourselves toward an almighty God.  Rather than harden ourselves when things go bad, we need to soften our hearts and learn of Him.  Rather than getting offended by God when things don't go as planned, we need to submit ourselves to Him and trust Him.

Prayer:

Father, teach me to follow You well.  Help me to never get a hard heart toward You or anyone else.  let my heart stay soft in Your hands.  Teach me to stay tender-hearted.

Yours,
Jeff

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Small Beginnings

Scripture:

Job 8:7  "And though thy beginning was small, Yet thy latter end would greatly increase".

Observation:

This was Bildad's impression of following the Lord and how He works with His people.  He was trying to figure out what was going on in his friend's life that caused God to be mad at him.  He understood God to always bless and prosper His people and therefore, he couldn't figure out why his friend was in such a dilemma.

Application:

Bildad's perception of the Lord was that His blessings cause his people to greatly increase, no matter how small their beginnings are.  We must believe that God has good plans for us.  This is rooted in His love for us.  We must believe that in serving Him, there will be blessings that follow and that we will be prosperous.

Prayer:

Lord God, help me to see You correctly.   Help me to know that You have great and wonderful plans for my life.  You are incredible and You have demonstrated Your love for me over and over again.  Help me to be more confident in my walk with You.

Yours,
Jeff

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

When it's good and when it's bad

Scripture:

Job 1:21  "and he said, 'Naked came I out of my mother's womb, and naked shall I return thither: Jehovah gave and Jehovah hath taken away; blessed be the name of Jehovah'".

Observation:

Job was incredibly blessed by God.  He had great money, children, and cattle.  When he lost everything, he felt like God had given it and God had taken it away and then he blessed the name of the Lord.  He realized that God wasn't just to be praised when everything was going well, but that He was to be praised when everything was going bad in our eyes.

Application:

We need God to bring us into the place in Him where we bless Him in the good times and bless Him in the bad times.  We must learn that God is in control, whether we are personally going through good or difficult times.  Our praise can't be conditional.  He is worthy, whether I'm seeing blessing or things are falling apart.

Prayer:

Father, You are worthy of my praise.  You are awesome and I love You with all my heart.  Help me not to be a conditional worshiper, but one who worships at all times.  I want Your praise to be continually in my mouth because You are worthy.

Yours,
Jeff

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Contentment

Scripture:

Philippians 4:11 "Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatever state I am, therein to be content".

Observation:

Paul was talking about finances and thanking them for their giving, but his overall view on life was that he had learned to be content with a little and content with a lot.

Application:

We are always striving for more and better.  Our society doesn't allow us to be content where we are.  It pushes us to have more, be more, accomplish more.  We are pushed to believe that bigger is better and we should never be satisfied.  Somewhere there is a balance where we don't settle for terrible situations, but we are content where God has us at the time.

Prayer:

Father, teach me to be content.  Help me in this area.  Show me how to walk in contentment and to get off the bigger is better treadmill.  I know there is great peace and joy in being content.  Help me find it.

Yours,
Jeff

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Mordecai's BLessing

Scripture:

Esther 8:15  "And Mordecai went forth from the presence of the king in royal apparel of blue and white, and with a great crown of gold, and with a robe of fine linen and purple: and the city of Shushan shouted and was glad".

Observation:

Mordecai had been faithful to the Lord and served Him well all the days of his life.  He had stepped out and done some things to rescue his people.  This had his life on the line.  He remained faithful to God and when it was all said and done, Mordecai was blessed beyond measure and those that were trying to kill him and his people, were killed.

Application:

When life seems unfair and like God isn't answering your prayers, know that God does hear and He will overturn everything that was coming against you when you have been faithful to Him.  God can turn your situation around so fast you get dizzy.  He can bless you so strong you won't be able to comprehend it in a moment's time.  Remain faithful to the Lord and watch Him take care of His child.

Prayer:

Father, teach me to walk in faithfulness to You and to speak up when You want me to concerning the things that are on Your heart.  Help me to accurately represent You and Your ways well.  Show me Your ways and Your heart.  I want to know You.

Your Son,
Jeff

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Love Surpasses Knowledge

Scripture:

Ephesians 3:19  "and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God".

Observation:

Paul wants the Ephesians, and us, to know Christ's love and the depths of it.  He wants us to have confidence in the love of God, which surpasses knowledge.  When we know His love, it says we can then be filled with all the fullness of God.

Application:

I want to be filled with all the fullness of God.  I want all of Him possible.  I want to know His love deeply and for that love to flow through my life.  Power flows through love.  It was Christ's compassion for people that brought their healing, deliverance, etc.  Love trumps knowledge every time.

Prayer:

Father, let my life be filled with your love.  Help me to walk in the love of Christ.  This weekend as I go to minister to young people, fill me with Your love for them.  Let Your Spirit flow without measure.  Let us be filled with all the fullness of God.  I want Your fullness in my life.

Your Son,
Jeff

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Remember me O God

Scripture:

Nehemiah 13:30-31 "Thus I cleansed them from everything foreign, and I established the duties of the priests and Levites, each in his work; and I provided for the wood offering at appointed times, and for the firstfruits.  Remember me, O my God for good".

Observation:

Nehemiah understood that God doesn't only look at the heart, but looks at what we did, or did not do, with our lives.  At the end of this book, he says that he had cleansed the people from everything not of God and provided for the sacrifices.  He had done everything he knew to do, then he asked God to remember him for doing it.

Application:

God doesn't forget, but we should be living our lives in obedience to Him and in doing what He wants us to do.  We don't have to question if God will remember us for doing right, but we should be focused on doing right so He has something to remember.  Are we living our lives so that we can say, "Remember me, O God for good"?

Prayer:

Father, help me to live my life with no regrets.  Help me to live in a way that pleases You above all else.  Teach me to follow Your ways.  Let my life be remembered for the good things I have done.

Yours,
Jeff