Thursday, October 31, 2013
Saturday, October 26, 2013
S -Acts 26:1-2 NASB
Agrippa said to Paul, "You are permitted to speak for yourself." Then Paul stretched out his hand and proceeded to make his defense: "In regard to all the things of which I am accused by the Jews, I consider myself fortunate, King Agrippa, that I am about to make my defense before you today;
O - Paul's long imprisonment even before having a real trial and sentence placed upon him is inspiring because it shows the great faith he had in God's plan for his life. He followed the Holy Spirits direction on each leg of his journeys; on this leg of the journey in his own defense Paul would be able to give his testimony and preach the Gospel to two major influential regional leaders Fetus and Agrippa. Both men were familiar with and curious about the new followers of Jesus and the Way. Paul could have been upset that he was unjustly imprisoned, instead he presented himself humbly and peaceful not only his defense but a rich testimony to those he presented his defense. A testimony of Jesus, and Gods plan for all of his people.
A - The application for me is to recognize that I have the intense passion that Paul had but I must grow in wisdom, discernment , and self control to know when to speak passionately, when to humble myself and wait for someone to ask me to speak. You see Paul here waited for Agrippa to say "you are permitted to speak for yourself". Paul didn't demand it, he waited for the invitation. I too often begin my defense or testimony (or some may say tirade) before the time is right or before I have the invitation to speak. I need to apply the fruit of the spirit, gentleness and self control to know when the right time to speak is, and to seek words that clearly communicates the truth, my convictions, but not in a way that creates an offense that would be a barrier to others receiving God's truth.
P- Dear heavenly Father, thank you for this day , your word, and your example through you Apostle Paul as to how I need to change. I pray Lord you Holy Spirit would continue to reveal untruth in my life and replace it with your truth. I pray for courage to speak and wisdom to choose words that represent who you are in me . I pray all this in Jesus name, Amen.
Thursday, October 17, 2013
S -Job 2 NASB
9 Then his wife said to him, “Do you still hold fast your integrity? Curse God and die!” 10 But he said to her, “You speak as one of the foolish women speaks. Shall we indeed accept good from God and not accept adversity?” In all this Job did not sin with his lips.
O - What a powerful conviction, trust, and understanding Job had as to who he was, who God was and what the relationship really between the two. God in His wisdom knew this about Job and allowed Satan to test him. It was not in a small way that Satan tested him either; after many years of abundance and blessings for him and his family Job's children where all struck down and Job's own flesh was greatly afflicted causing what must have been both extreme emotional and physical despair. But in all that He is able to respond to His own wife's recommendation to curse God and die, with an attitude of understanding of who He was, and who God is. Much like Paul later declares in the new testament, Job declares essentially that in His understanding, that in all things (good and bad) He has learned that God is on the throne and we are to accept willfully all that God has given us.
A - The application for me is to recognize that I have experienced both seasons of rich blessing from the Lord, as well as seasons of adversity in which my own mind begins to question if I like following a God that would allow such adversity in my life. In the end of all the adverse seasons I can always see his intentions and blessings that resulted from the season of adversity. These can be crucible seasons in which things in my life are ground down and discarded, my soul is correct and strengthened, for the seasons to come. I see these seasons in the life of Joseph (what a great name!) He had numerous seasons of adversity shaping him for the season in which he would lead his people , and the nation of Egypt as the Pharaoh's right hand man.
P - Dear heavenly Father , thank you for today's lesson, may it be sealed to my heart. Help me Lord to remember to have the attitude of Job, to accept both seasons of blessings and seasons of adversity with the same gratefulness and same submission to your will. I pray all of this in Jesus name, Amen.
Friday, October 11, 2013
S - nehemiah 6 NASB
10 When I entered the house of Shemaiah the son of Delaiah, son of Mehetabel, who was [h]confined at home, he said, “Let us meet together in the house of God, within the temple, and let us close the doors of the temple, for they are coming to kill you, and they are coming to kill you at night.” 11 But I said, “Should a man like me flee? And could one such as I go into the temple [i]to save his life? I will not go in.” 12 Then I perceived [j]that surely God had not sent him, but he uttered his prophecy against me because Tobiah and Sanballat had hired him. 13 He was hired for this reason, that I might become frightened and act accordingly and sin, so that they might have an evil report in order that they could reproach me. 14 Remember, O my God, Tobiah and Sanballat according to these works of theirs, and also Noadiah the prophetess and the rest of the prophets who were trying to frighten me.
O - I love this story of Nehemiah and the rebuilding of the gates of Jerusalem amidst great external pressure. A mentor of mine likened this story to the work I do in shipyards and today once again God is showing me His lessons for my life through scripture. Here we see Nehemiah who see's his enemies are conspiring against him and rather than become afraid he strengthens himself in the Lord , who has sent him on a mission to Jerusalem and made every way possible so far. He used his spiritual discernment on whom to trust and what to do.
A - There is so much more to unpack here that I feel like this is just the beginning. I know for me I feel like I am purposely place in an environment where there is both great opportunity and great resistance. I will be encouraged by Nehemiah today to understand my calling and my source of wisdom and strength as God, and God alone. I must confidently keep stepping forward.
P - Dear heavenly Father, thank you for this day , your word, your calling and your strength. I pray you continue to fill me with courage to be a man of God like Nehemiah and stand firm in what you are calling me to do. I pray all of this in Jesus name, Amen.
Wednesday, October 9, 2013
S-Psalm 133 NASB
For brothers to dwell together in unity!
2 It is like the precious oil upon the head,
Coming down upon the beard,
Even Aaron’s beard,
Coming down upon the edge of his robes.
3 It is like the dew of Hermon
Coming down upon the mountains of Zion;
For there the Lord commanded the blessing—life forever.
Tuesday, October 8, 2013
S - Psalm 131 NASB
Nor do I [b]involve myself in great matters,
Or in things too [c]difficult for me.
2 Surely I have composed and quieted my soul;
Like a weaned child rests [d]against his mother,
My soul is like a weaned child [e]within me.
3 O Israel, hope in the Lord
From this time forth and forever.
Thursday, October 3, 2013
8 And his [f]master praised the unrighteous manager because he had acted shrewdly; for the sons of this age are more shrewd in relation to their own [g]kind than the sons of light. 9 And I say to you, make friends for yourselves by means of the [h]wealth of unrighteousness, so that when it fails, they will receive you into the eternal dwellings.