Friday, September 30, 2016

The Lord Is My Shepherd....

Psalm 23 is one of the most well-known and beloved of the Psalms. In verse 4, David says, “Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.” 

The rod was the stick the shepherd used to whack the sheep on the flank, and the staff was a walking stick with a hooked end, used to pull the sheep back. It’s was the shepherd’s job to protect the defenseless sheep from predators and keep them from getting lost.  

Sheep can be stubborn and are prone to want to wander and go its own way, so it's necessary for the shepherd to take the rod and wack it on the flanks to get it back into the flock.  Sometimes God has to give us a whack. 

If you are a child of God, He won’t let you get away with wandering and disobedience. God chastens those He loves. His rod will correct you and His staff will pull you out of danger, and bring you back to the safety of your loving Shepherd. 

Psalm 78:52
But He led forth His own people like sheep And guided them in the wilderness like a flock;

Isaiah 40:11
Like a shepherd He will tend His flock, In His arm He will gather the lambs And carry them in His bosom; He will gently lead the nursing ewes.

John 10:11
I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down His life for the sheep.
Philippians 4:19

And my God will supply all your needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus.
1 Peter 2:25
For you were like sheep going astray, but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Set Your Course On God's Promises

Do not be afraid. God will not allow you the enemy to swallow you up. You are a child of the Living God. He will deliver you, honor you, and will be glorified through you.  God is faithful. Even your enemies will see His power. 

He will keep you in sickness, and in death. He will be your comfort. He will walk you through the valley, and you will fear no shadow. Hold on to His promises. 

Like a compass on a ship set your course and find your way by the promises of God. They will lead you, comfort you, and guide you through the most treacherous path. They will give you direction and wisdom and open up your own understanding to His inerrant Word. 

Study God’s Word. It abounds with nuggets of courage. It will strengthen you and help you, and fill you with everlasting life and peace.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

The Burden-Bearer

My Child, do not share your burdens with all who come to you professing concern. I, myself. Am the great burden-bearer. You need not look to another. I will lead you and guide you in wisdom from above.

All things will be as I plan them if you allow Me the freedom to shape circumstances and lead you to the right decisions.

I am merciful and kind. I love you beyond measure. I intend to do you good; and I will bring to you those who can truly help, if you leave all in My hands.

I want you to prosper and be in health. I want you to know Me more intimately. If difficulties come, it is by My order and for your benefit. Others would say you have trouble. I would say you have a test. Count in all joy. 

 "because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance." James 1:3

" For you, God, tested us; you refined us like silver." 66:10

" Even so we speak, not as pleasing men, but God who tests our hearts." 1 Thessalonians 2:4

" Until the time that his word came to pass, The word of the Lord tested him." Psalm 105:19

""So be truly glad. There is wonderful joy ahead, even though you have to endure many trials for a little while. These trials will show that your Faith is Genuine. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold—though your Faith is far more precious than mere gold. So when your Faith remains strong through many trials, it will bring you much Praise and Glory and Honor on the Day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the Whole World." 1 Peter 1:6-7

"Fire tests the purity of silver & gold, but the Lord  tests the heart."  Proverbs 17:3

"All things work together for those who love God and are called according to His purpose." Romans 8:28

Come Away My Beloved
Frances J. Roberts

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Vessels of Living Water

If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me,  as the Scripture has said,, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.  John 7:37-38

God desires that our lives be a vessel to contain the Spirit of God, and that we would then pour out God’s Spirit to t a thirsty world around us.

Yet, often we act as sponges, soaking all we can get, but don’t have any overflow. There is nothing left for those around us.

God is not just interested in what He can do in you, but what He can do through you. 
Paul wrote, “The fruit of the Spirit is love’(Galatians 5:22) The world hungers after true, divine, agape love. That’s what the world needs to see in us. When your life overflows with the Spirit of God, that is what flows out of you. It pours forth like torrents of living water, blessing all those that are around you because of what God has done in you and is now doing through you.

Monday, September 26, 2016

The Greatest of These

These are the planks upon which Christianity stands:

Faith – When everything else falls apart, faith sustains us – faith that God loves us, faith that God is in control.

Hope – Hope is the anticipation of a good ending. When everything around us looks bleak and hopeless, 
how is it that Christians can have such a joyful outlook and hope for the future” It’s because we have the guidebook. We know the end of the story.

Love – The heart of the Christian gospel is love. We are called to love God supremely and to love our neighbor as we love ourselves. That is the essence of the Christian message. God wants us to know and to offer the agape love as Paul describes it. “Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all thins, endures all things. Love never fails”(1 Corinthians 13:4-8)

These are the three planks upon which Christianity rests. Though every else may cease, these three will abide. In fact, heaven and earth may pass away, but these will remain; faith, hope, and love. But the greatest of these is love. 

Father, we ask  for faith, that we would believe You. We ask for hope, that we would wait for Your promises. And we ask for love, that we might give to others what You have given us. 

In Jesus’ Name, Amen. 

Pastor Chuck Smith 
Wisdom for Today