“But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.”
Today, if I should find myself sitting alone feeding on pity, please snatch me back up into the light and remind me that hope is not lost if I will just believe.
The king extended to Esther the gold scepter … and Esther approached and touched the end of the scepter. [Esth 5:2]
“When he cries out to me, I will hear, for I am gracious.”
And we have come to know and to believe the love that God has in us. God is love, and the one who resides in love resides in God, and God resides in him. By this love is perfected with us, so that we may have confidence in the day of judgment, because just as Jesus is, so also are we in this world. There is no fear in love, but perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears punishment has not been perfected in love. We love because he loved us first.
Let us draw near with a sincere heart in the assurance that faith brings, because we have had our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed in pure water. Through him we both have access in one Spirit to the Father. We have boldness and confident access to God because of Christ’s faithfulness.
Let us confidently approach the throne of grace to receive mercy and find grace whenever we need help.
[Exod 22:27, 1 John 4:16-19, Heb 10:22, Eph 2:18, Eph 3:12, Heb 4:16]
~ Samuel Bagster ~
THERE IS NO PLACE so desolate that you cannot find Me there. When Hagar fled from her mistress, Sarah, into the wilderness, she thought she was utterly alone and forsaken. But Hagar encountered Me in that desolate place. There she addressed Me as the Living One who sees me. Through that encounter with My Presence, she gained courage to return to her mistress.
No set of circumstances could ever isolate you from My loving Presence. Not only do I see you always; I see you as a redeemed saint, gloriously radiant in My righteousness. That is why I take great delight in you and rejoice over you with singing!
[GENESIS 16:13–14 AMP; PSALM 139:7–10; ZEPHANIAH 3:17]
~ Sarah Young ~
“He will swallow up death in victory; and the Lord God will wipe away tears from off all faces.”
“O Death, where is thy sting? O Grave, where is thy victory?”
“God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes.”
IN THIS marvellous chapter, Isaiah sings a Song of Hope, as he sees the return of the Hebrew people from captivity, and the overthrow of their foes. The Apostle Paul takes up this thought in 1 Cor. 15. He shows that death is the penalty of sin, and it is by the demands of the law that sin is stirred to activity. But Christ has satisfied and met the claims of the law, and gives power by which we are enabled to obey it; therefore the strength of sin is broken, and the sting of death is gone.
The Christian need not dread to die. For him there is no uncertainty about the future. There is no fear of what may come after death, for the condemnation of the law has been met and borne. We may apostrophise death in these exultant words. The viper has been deprived of its fangs! the prison-house cannot hold its inmates! Bunyan describes Satan as exhorting Captain Sepulchre to be sure to hold Christ, but the injunction was useless. No bars or bolts, no seal or sentry would suffice.
Notice that we are to “Put on” incorruption and immortality (1Co 15:53-54). It is as though the new body will be put on over the old, and as this takes place, all the elements of the old body will be swallowed up and absorbed. when the Holy Spirit completes his work in our souls, there will be no trace of the old rags left in the shining robes in which we shall be arrayed as we go forth to meet the welcome of our Lord. Death to those who believe in Christ is now only a Home-going; the falling asleep to open the eyes in the City of God; the loosening of the anchor, to float down stream in the full tide. “There shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain.”
O God, whensoever Thy ways in nature or in the soul are hard to be understood, then may our quiet confidence, our patient trust, our loving faith in Thee be great, and as children knowing that they are loved, cared for, guarded, kept, may we with a quiet mind at all times put our trust in the unseen God. So may we face life without fear, and death without fainting. AMEN!
~ F.B. Meyer ~
And He put all things under His feet, and gave Him to be head over all things to the church.
The Creator of the Universe
Tapping the collective shoulder of humanity, God points to the Son—his Son—and says, “Behold the center of it all.”
God raised him [Christ] from death and set him on a throne in deep heaven, in charge of running the universe, everything from galaxies to governments, no name and no power exempt from his rule. And not just for the time being, but forever. He is in charge of it all, has the final word on everything. At the center of all this, Christ rules the church. (Ephesians 1:20–22)
When God looks at the center of the universe, he doesn’t look at you. When heaven’s stagehands direct the spotlight toward the star of the show, I need no sunglasses. No light falls on me.
Lesser orbs, that’s us. Appreciated. Valued. Loved dearly. But central? Essential? Pivotal? Nope. Sorry… The world does not revolve around us. Our comfort is not God’s priority. If it is, something’s gone awry. If we are the marquee event, how do we explain flat-earth challenges like death, disease, slumping economies, or rumbling earthquakes? If God exists to please us, then shouldn’t we always be pleased?
Could a Copernican shift be in order? Perhaps our place is not at the center of the universe. God does not exist to make a big deal out of us. We exist to make a big deal out of him. It’s not about you. It’s not about me. It’s all about him.
[It’s Not About Me]
~ Max Lucado ~
A sluggard does not plow in season; so at harvest time he looks but finds nothing.
Don't forget to plan and prepare for the important things in life, especially when they involve your family. If you're not saving money every month, you may not have enough money in your retirement years. Yet, more importantly, if you're not investing the time to teach, play with, love or care for your kids now, you won't have loving and unbreakable relationships in the years to come. What are you waiting for?
WORKING FOR THE LORD
I pray that as you work, you will work with all your heart as if serving the Lord. May you work diligently and be steadfast, even when no one is looking. I pray that you will not be satisfied with mediocre performances, but that you will strive to show excellence worthy of the name of Christ. May you understand that your reward comes from Him, and that His reward is greater than any earthly reward for your work. May God place His seal of approval on you today.
In Jesus' Name, Amen.
I DESIGNED YOU TO BE FILLED with heavenly contents: My Love, Joy, and Peace. I am eager to pour out My abundance upon and within you, but this takes time—focused time with Me. Come to Me and linger in My Presence. As you wait with Me, My very Life streams into you, filling you up with heavenly substance.
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience.
“In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.”
Before You Turn Out the Light:
Do not rush these moments with Me—I am filling you with everything you need.
~ Sarah Young ~