- First, we cleave to God's Word. "I hate double-minded people, but I love Your law. You are my refuge and my shield; I have put my hope in Your word."
- Then, having clung ferociously to His word, we come against the deceivers, the deception, and the temptation to deceive. "Away from me, you evildoers, that I may keep the commands of my God."
- And when our strength flags, as it inevitably will, we cry out to Him: "Sustain me, my God, according to Your promise, and I will live…uphold me, and I will be delivered."
Saturday, November 28, 2020
Friday, November 27, 2020
Thursday, November 26, 2020
THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 26, 2020
“Your word, Lord, is eternal;
it stands firm in the heavens.
Your faithfulness continues through all generations;
you established the earth, and it endures.
Your laws endure to this day,
for all things serve you.” (Psalm 119:89-91)
On this Thanksgiving Day, we pause to give thanks for God’s faithfulness to us over this trying and tumultuous year. Like Daniel’s friends Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, we found ourselves cast into the fire of COVID-19’s dangers and major economic and social repercussions. We have regrettably become disconnected from family and friends out of caution. Our hearts hurt in grappling with the losses that we have faced.
Yet, God has remained faithful and steadfast. His love has not faded, and His Word stands firm. As this year has demonstrated, our trust in smaller things can quickly fail us, but God will not. In our toughest moments, we cling to His sovereignty and recognize how much we need Him and His presence.
Daniel and his friends provided outstanding examples of trusting God through the trials of life. Instead of looking for the “easy out” of bowing to Babylon’s pressures, they instead maintained their commitment to God. Please meditate on this bold declaration of trust: “If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to deliver us from it, and he will deliver us from Your Majesty’s hand. But even if he does not, we want you to know, Your Majesty, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up.” (Daniel 3:17,18)
God did indeed deliver them from the furnace, sending the pre-incarnate Jesus into the fire to rescue these faithful servants. Importantly, we see their heart: that their trust lay in God Himself, not their circumstances.
Which fires has God brought you through this year? Have you recorded these examples in a journal or at least shared with family and friends? How have you become more convinced of God’s faithfulness this year?
Lord God, thank You for Your tremendous faithfulness to us. Help us to grow in trust and to look to Your character in times of fiery trials. Preserve our dear family and friends during these days of COVID-19 and many other struggles, from economic loss to loneliness. Bring healing to our relationships and to our country. Help us to carry a spirit of thanksgiving forward from today. In Jesus’s mighty Name, amen.
Wednesday, November 25, 2020
Tuesday, November 24, 2020
2020. I'd say this year has been a rollercoaster, and while there have been ups and downs, there sure have been a lot of downs! Don't get me wrong, there are gifts to experience on a daily basis, and I have been able to enjoy numerous blessings this year including expanding our home projects and my husband getting a new job that we've been praying for for years.
We're now in November. Personally, I'm getting continually tired... My work situation is draining me as I hear "covid positive" on a regular basis and have to make notifications, put safeguards in place, and counsel staff and residents through this scary time. Weary is truly how I have felt over the past few weeks. Many of us have pushed through this year and excessively exerted ourselves. How do we seek comfort in our suffering? In our times of weariness?
In Psalm 119 (which is a super long Psalm!) the psalmist suggests that we can be comforted in our suffering, and that God's promise is what preserves us: keeps us safe, protects us, guards us, and keeps us from decaying. God's promises are numerous. He promises to be gracious, to be with us, to fight for us, to strengthen us, to give us peace, to love us with unfailing love, to use all things for good. And it doesn't end there. The more of the Bible that we read, the more promises we discover. Our bitter hearts become softened.
Comfort from God doesn't take away the challenges we are facing, but it can change our attitude and perspective as we go through the trials. God's Word has revived me. His promises are so much more than I deserve. As we prepare to enter the season of Advent, we can reflect on God sending His son into our world as a baby. This amazing gift to us is the fulfillment of so many promises, most importantly, the gift of eternal life outside of this broken world. A thrill of hope… And if that isn't reason to rejoice, I don't know what is!