What God Has Been Teaching Me Lately LIII (53)…
Greetings My Friends~
As a simple pilgrim following Jesus through the rainforests and deserts of this earthly life, I would like to humbly share some of what God has been bubbling up in my mind/heart lately.
I pray that these thoughts are cushions in your shoes, balm to your burns, umbrellas for the rain, and shade to the scorching heat as you too follow the Lord Jesus each day.
(please click on the Bible books/chapters/verses below to read the actual Scripture passages)
Psalm 119:62: The writer set his alarm, not for work, but worship–
to praise the LORD for His Word!
Forgive us Savior for not wanting You like this…
Comparing Is Not Caring
Saul’s madness began as he compared himself with David–
Saul was jealous that the LORD helped David have greater military success.
If the Lord Jesus just saved His people
from spending a little extra time at the spiritual DMV after we die,
His grace is nice but isn’t amazing.
But if the Lord Jesus has saved us from eternal fire & suffering,
that’s an awesome benefit (Psalm 103:4) worthy of our praise.
Belief in hell matters.
Only Like/Approve Of Parts of the Bible?
A. What would happen if you covered up a part that you didn’t like of a loved one’s face?
We do it to God when we ignore/twist/disagree with parts of Bible.
B. All Scripture is God-breathed (2 Timothy 3:16),
so when we ignore/twist/disagree with portions of the Bible,
we accuse God of halitosis & distance ourself from Him.
C. If we dont believe, agree with & submit to the Old Testament, can we do so to the New Testament? (John 5:46-47)
All the Bible is God’s Truth.
Mr. Potato Head God–Are You Building Your Own?
A. The One True God of all time is Father–He disciplines/grounds/restricts His children when we sin (Hebrews 12).
The cultural false-god of modern times is grandpa–he merely laughs at our sin & let us do what we want.
Which do you follow?
B. If we only want God to give us candy, pat our heads & smile, and spoil us today (stuff/blessings),
we see Him as grandpa.
If we desire God to focus on refining our character to be more like Jesus, in order to glorify Himself, even though that means He will lead us into testing and suffering, we see Him as Father.
Which do you follow?
Full-Truth or half-truth?
A. LORD, please help us to distinguish sand (lies/half-truth)
from Your Rock (full Truth)
since sand is actually tiny bits of rock.
Help us build on only Your Word, Your rock (Luke 6:46-49).
B. Jesus alone is Truth (John 14:6)—
God attracts us to the Bible’s hard Truth because in it alone is Jesus Himself.
If we want Him, we must go thru it…
C. Half-truths may attract people to church; only full Truth attracts to Christ Jesus.
Truth alone sets us free (John 8:32); jangling keys attract inmates desiring freedom…
Mo Money Mo Problems
Paul had to learn to be content with plenty (Phillippians 4:12)
because there’s dissatisfaction in our hearts even with much earthly blessing,
a soul-hole only Christ can fill.
Prominence Does Not Equal Importance;
Fame Does Not Equal Faithfulness
You can be a brave and famous leader and still be a spiritual prostitute,
wickedly unfaithful to God (1 Chronicles 5:24-25).
Help us, LORD…
In The Storm
A. Help us, LORD, to cry out to You in the battle and to trust You in the battle,
not just before or after it (1 Chronicles 5:19-20).
B. Yesterday’s exercise with the Lord can lead directly to tomorrow’s soreness.
May we praise Him in both, trusting Him to build us up in all things.
C. 2 Kings 15:1-5: Though Azariah was a godly king, the LORD afflicted him with leprosy all his life.
God’s ways arent ours; He is good no matter what.
God Ain’t Playin’
Some of our church services “do more harm than good”–
e.g. taking communion flippantly/without reflection/out of habit.
Help us Lord!
What Is Love?
A. Many think–“Loving pastors tell me what makes me smile.”
Loving pastors tell me what God has said, whether it makes me smile or not.
B. Many want more stories & less explaining of the Bible
so that a sermon is a pleasant devotion not a powerful declaration.
We play with the wrapper & throw out the present.
C. Illustrations/stories can be helpful in a sermon,
but many want more of that & less of the Bible.
We eat the bottle & leave the medicine on the counter.
D. Many only want the Bible to address our practical needs (improve our manners)–
e.g. picking kitchen cabinets in a new house.
We must do foundation work first or our entire house falls–cabinets & all.
E. Heavenly Father, please help us to be like the Lord Jesus,
Who loves sinners and gives Your message (even though it makes them angry)–
that we are dead until He gives us life, we are lost until He finds us.
God help us not be like Jonah,
who gave Your message but didnt love Ninevah;
help us also not to be like those who love Ninevah but don’t give Your message…
The Giver not the gifts
I dare not lean my weight on what God gives, but throw my all alone on Who He is.
Sin Needs A Savior, not a smooth talker
No less than the LORD as “Mighty Warrior” can save us (Zephaniah 3:17)–not diplomat or negotiator.
That is the nature of our bondage & rebellion.