God Keeps His Promises

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God Keeps His Promises

God, through His word, has made many promises. Some of His promises are for the whole world, some are for Israel, some are for the nations, some are specific for those who reject Him, some are specific for those who believe.

All, ALL, of His promises have been or will be fulfilled.

We rejoice that Almighty God has made promises we rely on.

When we praise God that His promises will be realized, those promises include hard times and judgment.

I see in my own life that rejoicing about His judgment is harder than rejoicing about His blessings.

Yet, both judgment and blessing are part of His glorious plan to sanctify us, and to have Jesus Christ reign over all.

I am determined to praise Him no matter what.

He is worthy to be praised. (Psalm 18:3)

God’s Light in a Dark World

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God’s Light in a Dark World

The world is increasingly dark. We rejoice that the Lord is the same yesterday, today, and forever, and that His light shines in the darkness. We rejoice that we, believers, have been rescued from darkness to receive light and life in Him, and to walk in His light.

God is Light and Life

God is Light, and in Him there is no darkness at all. (1 John 1:5)

I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of life. (John 8:12

It is the Spirit who gives life. (John 6:63)

Believers, Christ-followers, are light

He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son. (Colossians 1:13)

You are the light of the world.  (Matthew 5:14

God gives us light

Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path. (Psalm 119:105

You light my lamp; The Lord my God illumines my darkness.  (Psalm 18:28

In Your light we see light.  (Psalm 36:9

Children of Light have responsibilities

You are Light in the Lord; walk as children of Light (for the fruit of the Light consists in all goodness and righteousness and truth).  (Ephesians 5:8–9

Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven. (Matthew 5:16

Press on!

The darker it gets, the more it matters that we walk as children of light.

Remember we are God’s beloved children, walking in His light and with His resources. 

Press on!

Prepare to Praise

Prepare to Praise!

You may—or may not—be pleased with the election results at federal, state, or local levels.

Either way, praise God!

Determine now to praise Him, He who is worthy of all praise.

God is Sovereign

Remember, God is sovereign over the affairs of men. 

The Most High is ruler over the realm of mankind and bestows it on whomever He wishes. (Daniel 4:25

He does according to His will in the host of heaven and among the inhabitants of earth; and no one can ward off His hand or say to Him, ‘What have You done?’  (Daniel 4:35

Determine Now to Praise Him

God told Habakkuk He was bringing the Chaldeans to judge Israel. In advance, Habakkuk reviewed the upcoming invasion and vowed to praise Almighty God in the wake of the disaster.

Yet I will exult in the Lord, I will rejoice in the God of my salvation. (Habakkuk 3:18

If you’re happy with the election outcome, praise God. If you are devastated, praise God.

Aids to Praise 

You might recite one or more of the Psalms that focus on praise, such as Psalm 8, 65, 75, 100, 111, or 146

You might pick one or more posts from the two Praise series on this site. (Praise A to Z, Volume 1 and Volume 2).

We are responsible

Now, even more than ever, we have opportunities and responsibilities to honor God. Decide to live as God’s beloved children.

Prayer

Almighty God, You are all-wise, all-holy, all-powerful. We praise You that You are at work in this world, fulfilling Your righteous plan. Help us walk in a manner worthy of You. 

Second Wind

Second Wind

We are exhorted to keep going, press on, finish the race. 

We have a calling, a purpose in this world. We have a course God set for us. 

We are not to grow weary.

This is challenging!

But, think about it. God knows us better than we know ourselves. He has a purpose for our lives. God ordained the work He has for us. What we do, or don’t do, matters.

And! He accomplishes His purpose in our lives.

How to Get a Second Wind

How do we get a second wind in our lives? How do we get renewed energy to finish our race?

Remember whose we are and who we are

Almighty God, Creator and Ruler of everything, chose us, justified us, is sanctifying us, and will bring us to glory.

We are God’s beloved.

Sovereign God is in control and promises to bring good out of everything in our lives.

Determine

Determine to finish the course God set out for us, setting our faces like flint to reach our God-given goals.

Determine in each day, each moment, to please God.

Determine to live this life in hope, in joy, in the light of guaranteed eternal life.

Pray

Father, things are hard. And the problems we are facing have gone on a long time. Please renew our energy and our determination to live with joy and faithfulness. 

My Favorite Place

My Favorite Place

Beyond the roaring river there was a magical place with fresh, fir-scented air, enriched oxygen, and a forest separate from the world. 

It was so magical the Forest Service didn’t have it on their maps.

My mother’s first husband, Laban, fished that river and found a location where the raucous river bent around a point. When he asked the Forest Service about a lease for that spot, they could not identify it. He bet them: If they could pinpoint it, they would give him a 99-year lease. 

And so it was. 

When the surveyors had worked that stretch of the river, they stopped where a creek flowed into the river. When they started their work again, they began where a creek flowed into the river. But they weren’t the same creek. One creek was upstream, and the other creek was downstream. That entire beautiful stretch was missing from their map.

Years later, after Laban’s death, Mom’s remarriage, and my arrival, Dinner Bell Cottage became my favorite place on earth. 

We arrived on a dusty dirt road to a pull off by a footbridge formed over two big, long tree trunks spanning the river. On the far side was a path leading to Dinner Bell Cottage, which got its name from a dinner bell brought to Oregon by Laban’s pioneer family.

The cabin didn’t have electricity or running water. Heat came from a wood stove and the river rock fireplace. Light came from the sun, or oil lanterns, or Coleman lanterns. Water came from the river. Noise from the little traffic on the road was drowned by the river’s voice. Dust from the dirt road didn’t dare enter. 

I would often return to the footbridge and just stand there, watching and listening and feeling the water crash on the rocks.  

When I went to bed, I soaked in the sounds: the roar of the river, the hiss of the Coleman lantern, the crackle of the fire, and the murmur of my parents talking.

All was well.

Increasing Trust

Increasing Trust

God has individual learning plans for each of His children. We, believers, know that He is working on us and in us, and that He will keep causing our growth until the day of Christ.

God … is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure.  (Philippians 2:13

He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus. (Philippians 1:6

These are promises from Almighty God who cannot lie.

His development plan for me

The focus of His (current) development plan for me has been trusting Him in this difficult time.

He made me aware that my trust in Him wasn’t sufficient for today. 

The symptoms of my lack of trust were my agitation, stress, anxiety, and sleep issues. I would pray for the outcomes I wanted. I would pray: “Yet not my will, but Yours be done.” But then, pray for what I longed for.

I needed to trust more. I needed to choose to trust Him.

So—I declare that:

I believe God is faithful to His word; I believe God can be believed.

I trust in Almighty, Sovereign God who is in total control. Even though it looks like a total mess to me, I am persuaded that God is ruling over all.

I trust that He has a glorious, holy plan and that He is working to fulfill that plan. I am confident that He is bringing about an eternal, blessed end.

I trust Him to be doing what is right in this dark time and always.

I trust that He has work for me to do.

I trust that, at the right time, He will bring me home to heaven.

And repeat!

I know I haven’t arrived, but I am making progress, thanks to God. 

Prayer

Father, thank You for testing my trust and showing me my need. Thank You that You are continually working in me to make me more like Your beloved Son. Thank You for hope, for joy in the midst of these issues. Thank You for giving me the desire to trust You more and more.

Promises for Today

Promises for time and eternity

All Scripture is inspired by God, who cannot lie. (2 Timothy 3:16, Titus 1:2)  

All promises in Scripture are guaranteed by Almighty God. (Hebrews 6:17-18, 2 Corinthians 1:20)

A number of His promises concern eternity; other promises are for us, believers, today. 

Four promises for today

We have access to God

In the Old Testament, God restricted access to Himself. (Exodus 19:12, Hebrews 9:6-8)

Today, our enormous privilege, bought by Christ with His blood, is to draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need. (Hebrews 4:16

This colossal promise cannot be overstated. 

Father, please help us, with gratitude, come to You. 

We are prayed for

We pray to the Father, receiving mercy and grace in time of need. (John 15:7)

Christ, our High Priest, continually intercedes for us. (Romans 8:34)  (See Jesus is Praying for You)

Holy Spirit, who dwells in us, prays for us. (Romans 8:26) (See The Holy Spirit is Praying for You)

We are helped

Those who have received Christ as Lord and Savior are given a Helper, the Spirit of Truth, who is with us and in us. (John 14:16–17

The Holy Spirit teaches us, guides us, and empowers us. (John 14:26–27, John 16:13, Acts 1:8)

We are loved

Nothing, nothingwill be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.  (Romans 8:35–39

He promised He would never leave us or forsake us. (Hebrews 13:5)

He promised:  I am with you always, even to the end of the age. (Matthew 28:20

Be grateful

There are many more promises for us today, thank God! 

Let’s be grateful for His unchangeable, infallible word, and strive to live believing Him. 

The Last Word

The Last Word

Two young kids: “’Tis too.” “Tis not.” “Tis too.” “Tis not.”

Each wanted the last word. 

The desire to have the last word continues throughout life, usually more subtly. 

Psychologists posit reasons for this, and enumerate the personality types most likely to engage in it.

But we know … it comes from sin.

Rejection, rebellion, and blasphemy are forms of the unrighteous striving to have the last word. 

But, thank God, He has the last word!

As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to Me, and every tongue shall give praise to God. (Romans 14:11

At the name of Jesus every knee will bow, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and … every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. (Philippians 2:10–11

So there!

Hallelujah!

Maranatha! Lord, Come!

We Have An Aroma

We have an aroma

As believers, God manifests through us the sweet aroma of the knowledge of Christ in every place. (2 Corinthians 2:14)

As we joyfully serve Him, we are a fragrant aroma, an acceptable sacrifice, well-pleasing to God.  (Philippians 4:18

We are a fragrance

For we are a fragrance of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing; to the one an aroma from death to death, to the other an aroma from life to life. (2 Corinthians 2:15–16

Our sweet aroma and the fragrance of our witness of Christ pleases God

For some, the fragrance of Christ in us will be a step towards their salvation.

For some, the fragrance of Christ in us will speak to them of their sin and eternal peril.

We shouldn’t be surprised that the world hates us

We shouldn’t be surprised at rejection, hate, and persecution.

If the world hates you, you know that it has hated Me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, because of this the world hates you.  (John 15:18–19

Strive to:

Manifest the knowledge of Christ.

Joyfully serve Him.

Be a fragrance that is well-pleasing to God.

Praise Him!

Lies!

Lies

Lies and accusations of lying are falling like heavy rain

I don’t think any segment of our current lives is free from this plague, which demands our deliberation and discernment.

Be alert! Be careful!

Is it a lie?

Not all false statements are lies, which require an intent to deceive. Mistakes can be a problem, but they do not have the motive of deception. (See Mistake or Lie). Puffery and hyperbole can cause difficulty, but are generally expected in, say, advertising.

If we accuse someone of lying, we are judging the person’s character. Be careful! (See, for example, Matthew 5:22.) 

Lies are from Satan 

You are of your father the devil, and you want to do the desires of your father. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth because there is no truth in him. Whenever he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies. (John 8:44

But we, believers, have laid aside our old selves with its evil practices. (Colossians 3:9)

God hates lies and false accusations

There are six things which the Lord hates, yes, seven which are an abomination to Him: Haughty eyes, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that run rapidly to evil, a false witness who utters lies, and one who spreads strife among brothers.  (Proverbs 6:16–19

A false witness will not go unpunished, and he who tells lies will not escape.  (Proverbs 19:5)

Our responsibility

In this world, we face spiritual lies, secular lies, and mistakes.

Spiritually, we have the word of God, and the Holy Spirit, dwelling within us, guides us to all truth. We must know the Bible and be discerning.

From a secular point of view, we need to have our “lie meter” up and running, and we must be committed to the truth. We also must humbly realize that we cannot know everything about anything. 

Christ is the way, the truth and the life (John 14:6). Let’s continue to strive to walk in a manner worthy of Him. (Ephesians 4:1, Colossians 1:10, 1 Thessalonians 2:12)