“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28.
Verse chosen from today’s Bible reading; 1 Samuel 28-29, Psalm 109, and Matthew 11.
Talk about a description of life on this earth!
“Weary and burdened?” Who isn’t there or has been there? Not there now? Wait a while!
When we get weary. When we get burdened. Where do we turn? Not God? We have a counterfeit god. Plain and simple.
Jesus invited the folks with weariness and woes to come to Him. How is that done? I identify me…needy. I identify Him…….the Comforter. I turn my problem(s) over to Him. I involve Him in their solutions. I let go and let God!
I am never going to function as He wants apart from Him. When I separate (intentionally or unintentionally) from Him, I will soon be overwhelmed one way or the other.
Once you’ve been connected to God, it is very discomforting to bring on other gods. They are NOT Him. They are limited. They are terminal.
“Good Scripture for every reader. We need You 24/7. Forgive me for chasing (and trusting) counterfeit gods. It’s a mistake. I know better. I need You in all seasons. You are my only God. Guide me, O thou great Jehovah.”
He’s telling you to “come to Him.” Do it!
“Anyone who loves their father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves their son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.” Matthew 10:37.
Verse chosen from today’s Bible reading; 1 Samuel 27, Psalm 141, 1 Chronicles 9, and Matthew 10.
This verse does NOT say that we shouldn’t love our families!
Most of us do love our families. This verse says that we should love God MORE than our families.
If it comes down to choosing one or the other, it needs to be God.
What does God want me to do? I believe that often the “right” thing will please both God and family.
This God/family thing, however, can be a real struggle for young believers in a godless family. The godless can be nice folks but without God there will be instances in which their ways are not God’s Ways.
I must be so filled with His Holy Spirit that I will always know what He wants me to do. I will make Godly choices.
I am currently struggling to reveal Him to others. I know what I want to do, and I think that He wants me to do it, but will I move on it? I must love Him with all my heart and see where that leads me. Fearing others is living without Him in charge.
“Lord, I thank You for Your Word. I thank You for today’s gut check on my loyalties. I play it safe, way too often. I love my security. I don’t want to rock any boats. The result is inactivity where there could have been Godly activity. Forgive me, Father. I love You.”
Is God first in your life?
“You, God, are my God, earnestly I seek you; I thirst for you, my whole being longs for you, in a dry and parched land where there is no water.” Psalm 63:1.
Verse chosen from today’s Bible reading; 1 Samuel 25-26, Psalm 63, and Matthew 9.
How hard am I chasing God?
If God is my God, then I need to be chasing Him with fervor.
I want to know Him better. I want to know what He’s all about. I want to make sure that I am doing what He wants, because His Ways are the best ways.
Our relationship must not be casual. I fear that often it is. I tune Him in and out. I move on to other gods, often without realizing it.
I often write about rightly representing God. I can’t do that unless my relationship to Him in tight.
It is said that “apart from Him I can do nothing.” For me, apart from Him I can do plenty, none of which is ultimately a good thing. The whisperer (Satan) encourages independent thinking. He tells me that I can handle things. He tells me that my chosen ways are good. All lies! And how often do I act on them.
My pursuit of God must be ongoing. It needs to be at the thirst-and-water level.
“Lord, I love You. Help me to tighten my connection to You. May it be ongoing and not occasional. I need You every second. Please stir my thirst for You. Parch me when I am away from You, so that I will realize my need of You. Direct my path, I beg.”
Are you thirsty for Him?
“May the Lord judge between you and me. And may the Lord avenge the wrongs you have done to me, but my hand will not touch you.” 1 Samuel 24:12.
Verse chosen from today’s Bible reading; 1 Samuel 24, 1 Chronicles 8, Psalms 57-58, and Matthew 8.
Great role model activity by David.
Saul was clearly out to get David, but God protected David.
David had several opportunities to finish off Saul but refused to do it because Saul was God’s anointed king.
David’s restraint was remarkable.
How easy it is to get back at somebody. They do something to you and you bide your time waiting for an opportunity to give them what they deserve.
But this isn’t God’s Way. God expects us to love our enemies. Obviously, we can’t do that in our own strength. We need Him running our lives.
I believe that many of us drive in an ungodly manner. Someone cuts us off? Time for the horn! Someone doesn’t use their signal? Time to say/think unhappy thoughts!
O how we need Him!
“Lord, take me over. I want every word/deed to please You. Forgive me for taking revenge in whatever form it takes. I need to honor You in all that I do. Help me, I beg.”
Are you vengeful?
“And Saul’s son Jonathan went to David at Horesh and helped him find strength in God.” 1 Samuel 23:16.
Verse chosen from today’s Bible reading; 1 Samuel 23, Psalm 31 & 54, and Matthew 7.
We are blessed if we have someone in our lives who regularly gives us encouragement.
I’m not talking about superficial encouragement but actual, realistic encouragement.
Jonathan knew two things; his father’s hatred toward David was senseless, and David would be the king because God had promised it. Jonathan reminded David and encouraged him to keep going.
To be a good encourager, I must care for the other person’s well-being. If I have a casual relationship with a person, my encouragement will be shallow and will be received the same way.
If I am full of God, I will be able to encourage others in a Godly way. I will have His Words. Those Words will be timely and appropriate.
“Lord, fill me with You. Give me, please, Your Words so that I will have them to use in every conversation I am in today. Help me, Lord, I beg.”
Are you encouraging anyone?
“For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.” Matthew 6:14-15.
Verses chosen from today’s Bible reading; 1 Samuel 22, Psalm 17 & 35, Matthew 6.
This is to-the-point tough!
We really live in a dream world if we continue to be unforgiving and yet expect God to be forgiving.
It reveals that we do NOT understand what God has done for us. We minimize it because we’re, well, good folks. We just needed a little forgiveness. Really!
We were born sinners and have sinned our way through every day we’ve lived. Look at the Ten Commandments and consider your violations. Remember that to look in lust is to commit adultery in our hearts. Remember that to hate someone is to murder them in your hearts. Remember that God is to have first place in our lives. And the list goes on and on…..
We are serious sinners. AND YET God has forgiven us completely. And we hesitate to forgive those in our midst?
“Lord, I am a sinner. I beg for Your forgiveness. I beg for a cleaned-up life. Forgive me for not being forgiving. For holding onto dislike. For behaving poorly in the midst of those I disagree with. O Lord, I need You badly. Help me now, to live in a way that pleases You.”
Got anyone you need to forgive?
“If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that?” Matthew 5:46.
Verse chosen from today’s Bible reading; 1 Samuel 20-21, Psalm 34, and Matthew 5.
Some folks are easy to like, while others are easy to dislike.
Today’s verse challenges us to like the unlikeable.
What makes some people hard to like is because we assume that we may not get a positive response from them if we like them. We want a reward for being nice!
How often do we talk negatively about those we dislike? Think how far that attitude is from what God wants from us.
The quick cure (for us) regarding those we dislike, is to start praying for them. That move has helped me regarding politicians.
My life needs to be fully aligned with Him. I cannot digress into any form of godlessness. To pull this off, my relationship to Him must be ongoing. There are no vacations.
“Lord, forgive me for disliking people. Forgive me for telling tales about people that are hurtful. Fill me so much with You that what goes through my head and comes out my mouth pleases You. Fill me with Your Holy Spirit I beg, right now. I love You, Lord.”
Disliking people is a form of godlessness.