Time & Money

Monday, July 14, 2008  Noon

Dear Diary,

Time is my enemy. There just isn’t enough of it. I thought to myself, “If only I had time alone and time to study and meditate on God’s Word, then I could write down my thoughts uninterrupted.” I said, “If only I had money to where I could stay home, I could write.” But then it hit me. If I had time to kill and money to burn I would most likely be a dry well and have nothing to say. Then the Lord revealed to me that it is out of pressure that peace comes. It is out of poverty that true wealth comes which shall never fade or be stolen. It is out of suffering that healing comes. It is out of struggle that goodness springs forth. It is out of storms that calm comes. So, having time and money is not the answer. I must seek the LORD in the midst of all my busyness and distractions. For out of life’s trials godliness comes.

Thought for Today: “My times are in thy hand:…” (Psalm 31:15).

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With Your Whole Heart

Monday, July 14, 2008  5:00 a. m.

Dear Diary,

How many people do you know that seek the Lord with their whole heart? There are very few. Asaph, David’s musician, wrote Psalm 73. It is called “A Psalm of Asaph”. Asaph looked at the wicked and became envious of their prosperity. He was trying to do the right thing, but he was ready to slip, (v. 2) because he saw that the ungodly prospered. He felt that he had cleansed his heart in vain (v.12). But in Psalm 73:17 Asaph said, “Until I went into the sanctuary of God, then understood I their end.” He realized that the wicked will die and be thrown into hell. It became clear to him that in a moment they shall see utter destruction. Then Asaph realized how foolish he was to envy the wicked. He acknowledged how God is continually with him and guides him with His counsel. Never envy the wicked, for their destruction is sure. But “…love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.” (Matthew 22:37).

Thought for Today: Asaph said, “Whom have I in heaven but thee? and there is none upon earth that I desire beside thee.” (Psalm 73:25).

We All Want Fed

Tuesday, April 15, 2008   6:40 a.m.

Dear Diary,

I just drove to four different gas stations in search of a particular donut. No amount of gas or distance would stop me. I wanted that donut, and I was willing to go to all lengths  to get it. It reminds me of when people followed Jesus around for miles enduring all kinds of hardships; and for what? Jesus could see their heart and said, “…Verily, verily, I say unto you, Ye seek me not because ye saw the miracles, but because ye did eat of the loaves, and were filled.” (John 6:26). I can truly relate to this. To what lengths are you willing to go to in order to be fed? Do you go to those same lengths in order to hear the Word of God as you do for food? I sometimes wonder how many people would attend church if there were no church dinners. So often we put food before God. I’m guilty of this myself. But God sees our heart and our motives. Our motives will be judged just as much as our actions. May we not let food take the place of God, nor pride take the place of actions. May we put God before all these.

Thought for Today: “Labour not for the meat which perisheth, but for that meat which endureth unto everlasting life…” (John 6:27).

One Man

Friday, March 28, 2008  7:10 a.m.

Dear Diary,

It seems that God chooses one man, or woman, to do His purposes. He puts it in the heart of one man; and that one man, through God’s help, changes the world. “For the eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show himself strong in the behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward him.” (II Chronicles 16:9). God is always looking for that “one man.” The majority of us are not that man. We are not single minded toward God. We want our own pleasures, our own way, our own purposes. If God could find that one man in whom the Spirit of God abides, in truth, He could do wonderful and mighty things. My mind is drawn to Gideon, Nehemiah, David, Jeremiah, Daniel and many others. They each were one man who allowed God to show himself strong in them. They had a heart that was perfect toward God. Be that Man!

Thought for Today: “For his eyes are upon the ways of man, and he seeth all his goings.” (Job 34:21).

The Law of Sin and Death

Monday, March 4, 2008   6:45 a.m.

Dear Diary,

In Pastor’s sermon yesterday I learned something new. Well, I guess I knew it all my life, but it just became clearer to me. When Jesus Christ died on the cross He broke the law of sin and death. Certain laws were established in the beginning of time. Just like the law of gravity, there was a law established in the beginning that said: If sin entered man, that man belonged to Satan; and because of that sin man must die. That was The LAW. Satan held the keys to sin and death. But when Jesus died on the cross, who had committed no sin, The LAW was broken and Satan’s keys were taken away. Because of Christ’s sinless death we no longer belong to Satan. “For ye are brought with a price…” (I Corinthians 6:20) and that price was Christ’s own blood. Satan lost his hold on us. Amen! I’ve never seen it as a LAW that had to be broken before. I came home from Church and watched C. S. Lewis’, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. It shows this LAW broken by Christ so plainly.

Thought for Today: Jesus says, “I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for ever more, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death.” (Revelation 1:18).

The Rebuilder

Saturday, February 2, 2008   3:30 a.m.

Dear Diary,

Nehemiah was the king’s cup bearer. One day when his countenance was sad, the king asked him what was wrong. Nehemiah was never sad in the presence of the king before. Wouldn’t that be a wonderful testimony to have never been seen as sad before? Nehemiah told the king that he was sad because Jerusalem, the city of his father’s, laid in waste and was consumed with fire. The king told Nehemiah to go and repair the walls of Jerusalem. The king even gave him letters to give to the governors and to the keepers of the King’s forest requesting them to give him timber in order to rebuild the walls. In other words, God sent Nehemiah out with authority. When he arrived at Jerusalem he went out by night to view the ruins of the walls. I can just visualize him alone, riding his horse slowly through the city with only the sound of the clip clop of his horses’ hoofs. His heart was rent when he viewed the extent of it all. He told no man what the LORD had laid upon his heart. He went out by night to the gate of the valley before the dragon well. Then he went to the dung gate. Next, he went to the fountain gate, and then up to the pool of Siloah, which used to be beside King Solomon’s garden. But it was in such ruin that there was no place for his horse to pass. Sorrow gripped his heart as he sat on the hill and viewed the destruction. But God encouraged Nehemiah and told him to rebuild the walls. God is a healer of broken hearts. He is a repairer of broken dreams. He is a rebuilder of lives. If your life is in ruin allow God to rebuild it. (Nehemiah 1:1 – 3:20)

Thought for Today: “And I will restore to you the years that the locust hath eaten, the cankerworm, and the caterpillar, and the palmerworm, my great army which I sent among you.” (Joel 2:25).

Jesus Expounded

Sunday, January 27, 2008   4:00 a.m.

Dear Diary,

Luke 24:13-45 talks about the Road to Emmaus. Verse 27 says, “And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all scripture the things concerning himself.” (Luke 24:27). I wonder what things Jesus would have expounded about himself? It had to have been from the Old Testament because the New Testament hadn’t been written yet. I started thinking about what Moses said about Jesus. Numbers 21:9 says, “Moses made a serpent of brass, and put it upon a pole, and it came to pass, that if a serpent had bitten any man, when he beheld the serpent of brass, he lived.” The brass serpent was a “Type of Christ” who was made sin for us. Then Jesus most likely reminded the disciples of the first Passover where an innocent lamb had to be sacrificed and how Jesus Christ was the Lamb of God. Then, of course, He would have told them about Isaiah 53:3-12, and the prophecy of how Christ was to suffer and die. How inspiring it would have been to have walked with those disciples on the Road to Emmaus and been able to listen to Jesus expounding all the scriptures about Himself.

Thought for Today: “And they said one to another, Did not our heart burn within us, while he talked with us by the way, and while he opened to us the scriptures?” (Luke 24:32).

Believe, Go and Do

Monday, January 21, 2008  4:20 a.m.

Dear Diary,

John 9:1-7 tells us how Jesus put clay on a blind man’s eyes. “…he spat on the ground, and made clay of the spittle, and he anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay.” (John 9:6). Then Jesus told the blind man, “…Go, wash in the pool of Siloam.., (which is by interpretation, Sent.)” (John (9:7). Jesus could have just said, “Open your eyes,” and the blind man would have been able to see. But, instead He said, “Go!” Jesus did not lead the blind man to the pool of Siloam. He, himself, had to believe, go and do. This was a trial of believing and a test of obedience. The blind man had to struggle to find his way to the pool of Siloam. He couldn’t just walk there because he was still blind. But his “going” demonstrated his belief and obedience. Had he not gone he would have remained  blind. But John 9:7 says, “…He went his way therefore, and washed, and came seeing.” Things don’t just happen, we must first believe, go and do. It is through the “doing” that we are given. Jesus says, “…Go thy way; and as thou hast believed, so be it done unto thee.” (Matthew 8:13). Lord, may we believe, go and do.

Thought for Today: “…According to your faith be it unto you.” (Matthew 9:29).

Not Even a Cup of Tea?

Wednesday, January 9, 2008  4:00 a.m.

Dear Diary,

William Penn, who lived from 1644-1718, wrote, “Though some men should not find it relish’d high enough for their finer wits, or warmer pallats, it will not perhaps be useless to those of lower flights.” Somehow I feel that my thoughts are those of lower flights. They are not high and lofty, but small and simple. Still, I pray that they will touch someone’s heart. Yet, sometimes as I’m flying low my heart becomes disquieted within me. Then the Lord comes softly and whispers in my ear, “Child, why art thou disquieted? Is not there blue skies after the rain, and even a rainbow to make you smile again? Is not there a flower blowing in the wind with a heavenly fragrance that you can sniff in? Is not there a bird singing somewhere to lift you spirit till you don’t have a care? Hast thou no pleasure or time to feel free, not even a cup of tea?” As I gather up all the pleasant things God has given, my soul is lifted once again and my fight soars.

Thought for Today: “He sets on high those that are low, And those who mourn are lifted to safety.” (Job 5:11).

Drink It In

Friday, January 4, 2008   3:00 a.m.

Dear Diary,

I drove the car feeling empty. My soul longed to be filled with the joy of scripture. I turned on my Bible CD. It started in book of Matthew. That was okay, but it was not what my ears longed to hear. Quickly I removed that CD and put in the CD of the book of John. However, it started at the end of Luke. Frantically, I fast forwarded it to John 1:1. “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God.” I drank it in as if it were a cold drink of water satisfying my thirsty soul. I breathed a sigh of relief as one sighs after his thirst is quenched. My soul was fainting until it was revived by God’s life giving Word. That God-shaped hole in my soul was dry and only God could fill it. Finally, my soul was satisfied as I drank in the refreshing, soothing scripture.

Thought for Today: “Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.” (Matthew 5:6).