Monday, May 19, 2014

We are Being Chased!

Psalm 23:6 (NKJV) Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me All the days of my life; And I will dwell in the house of the LORD Forever.

I love this Bible verse. It was originally written in Hebrew and then translated to English. The word, "follow", in this verse comes from a Hebrew word pronounced, Raw-daf. It actually means to pursue or chase down much like a hunter goes after game (1).

So how do we get goodness and mercy to chase us down?

The Bible says in Hebrews 12:1, "... let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us." Our job is to run the race God has planned for us. But this verse makes an important point. We need to lay aside our personal sins and burdens.

Our Father can take care of our challenges when we take care of His challenges. We have been empowered by the Holy Spirit for His purposes. He takes care of us like a loving father takes care of his children. That means, He provides all of our needs, encourages us, and strengthens us to overcome sin. As long as we remain in His grace, He is free to take care of our burdens and purge our conscience of dead works (2).

When we let God handle our affairs, and put our efforts into His; we will be overcome with goodness and mercy!

His will for every person is unique. Whatever His will is, it will be a way for His fruit to overflow through us into a world that desperately needs it.

Be blessed!
(1) Strong’s Greek and Hebrew Dictionary, copyright 1890 by James Strong, MADISON, NJ. Strong’s number, H7291.
(2) Hebrews 9:14, "how much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?" 

Monday, May 05, 2014

Fighting our own Battles.

Isaiah 30:15 (NLT) This is what the Sovereign LORD, the Holy One of Israel, says: “Only in returning to me and resting in me will you be saved. In quietness and confidence is your strength..."

The Scripture tells us we have the power to tread upon our enemy (Luke 10:19). It also says, we have been provided armor for battle (Ephesians 6:11-18). So if we are supposed to rest in Him, why do we have all this power?

We have been given power to do His will, and we can rely on Him to protect us. God loves us more than we can grasp (Ephesians 3:19). We are His children. He is the only perfect Father we could have. It could be you are fortunate enough to have a great earthly father, but no father on earth could love you like your heavenly Father. And He wants to protect his children.

So how do we activate this protection?

I spent so much of my Christian walk trying to take care of my own problems and getting nowhere. I believed sin must be the problem. I tried to eliminate sin in my life. The harder I tried---the harder it became. I could get one sin under control only to realize I had another sin to deal with.

I found myself in more bondage than before I received the gift of salvation. Now I had twice the trouble. I had life challenges to deal with plus the bondage of sin. It was not working and I was getting depressed.

Isaiah 30:18 says, "So the LORD must wait for you to come to him so he can show you his love and compassion. For the LORD is a faithful God. Blessed are those who wait for his help" (NLT).

I take my personal battles to God. In quiet confidence, I wait for Him to take care of them. I don't work for it by trying to eliminate sin in my life---God takes care of that too. Instead, I take my entire God given strength and use it to fulfill His purpose. Whether His purpose is as simple as praying for others, or full blown ministry, this is the kind of thing the armor is meant for (Eph. 6:18).

Be blessed---mighty warrior!