Tuesday, 30 October 2018
I cry to you, O Lord;
I say,” You are my refuge,
my portion in the land of the living.” Psalm 142.5
Indeed, the Lord is my refuge. He is the place where I take shelter. I come to Him; I hide in Him. He also strengthens me. I find myself in Him. I am not weak when I am in Him. I may seek Him in a weakened state but, as I press in to Him, my weakness leaves me. I fold into His arms of comfort and strength and my weakness goes. It is replaced by the surest declaration of His sovereignty. His mercy and grace covers me. His love consumes me. Most certainly He is my refuge.
He is also my portion in the land of the living. He sustains me. He preserves my life. The trappings that I gather for myself will not sustain me nor lead me through. God alone can do that.
My flesh and my heart may fail,
but God is the strength of my heart
and my portion forever. Psalm 73.26
I delight in You. You are the source, the origin of all things. You are also the sustainer – the force that animates me and keeps me going, the power that enables me.
I rejoice in You. I thank You for this new day and for the life You have vested in me. I look to go forward in You, upheld by You, guided by You, and filled with Your wonderful gifts.
I am motivated by You. Gracious, loving, caring God, let me show You to the world. Be in my thoughts, my words and my deeds.
Take my day and make it Yours,
In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.
Sunday, 28 October 2018
All the days ordained for me
were written in your book
before one of them came to be. Psalm 139.16
What dos this tell me? Firstly, that my life span and scope, maybe, were determined before the very first day of my life. Sure, I have choice and the choices I make will affect the content of my days. But our all-knowing God is aware of this beforehand, and He makes the most of all that I do, working for good in all things.
This does not permit me to be lax and sloppy, but neither does it warrant that I live in self-blame. I release my faults to God in confession and repentance, and seek His way through.
Secondly, these words tell me that I am in God’s precious book. I might see this as the heavenly register of God’s decisions. O yes, please. God cares so much for me. I delight that He has made decisions regarding me, and I look to live in the fullness of His ways.
Your word today reminds me of Your care for me. Each one of my days is contained in Your book. O, Hallelujah! Praise Your name.
I lay before You the wrong, the foolish, and the misdirected decisions I have made in and with my life. I ask Your forgiveness.
I look to go forward only in Your way. I seek Your guidance and direction. Lead me this day and each day to come. Let my ways be set in Your way. Meld my will in obedience to Your will. Unite my spirit with Your Holy Spirit.
Lord God, precious Saviour, hear my love for You. Receive me today and make me Yours. Lead me into God-ordained situations throughout this day. Know my desire to serve You. Take me and use me, in Jesus’ name I ask. Amen.
Friday, 26 October 2018
“You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit that will last.” John 15.16a
I remember clearly the time when God got hold of me. I see it now as His ambushing me. He took me by surprise, drawing me to Him in intimate and lasting relationship.
Jesus says He chose me to go and bear fruit – good fruit, fruit that will last. In those early days of growing relationship with the Holy Trinity, I had no idea of what lay ahead. When I went to Bible College it was with the sole idea of wanting to know God more and to get close to Him – or so I thought! It was sometime into studies that I had the novel idea that God might use me.
I believe God is using me, and it is the most wonderful thing. I use the present tense because our relationship continues and our working partnership goes on. I hope that good fruit has come forth over the years, fruit that will last.
I am well aware that it is not I who works, but God works in and through me. As I let go and release myself to Him, so He is free to work as He pleases in me.
I feel great contentment in my relationship and work with Him. I am not necessarily satisfied, but I am content. In this I think I connect with Paul.
I still call out for more. After this year’s adventure – removal of a brain tumour and the recovery I seem to have made – I think I can look forward to more life and work in this world. But I must not anticipate! God is in charge and my cry is, “Not my will but Yours be done.”
I look forward, whilst I enjoy each day as it comes, and to the fullest measure. Yesterday is history. Tomorrow is yet to come, and I don’t know what it might bring. But today is here. It is now, and Jesus exhorts me to live in today. I know He is with me, so, together, we will journey through the day, working in partnership and enjoying each other.
I thank you for choosing me. I cherish the relationship that we share. I thank you for my Lord Jesus, my friend, co-worker and constant companion. I thank You for the day ahead and pray that many blessings will flow. Amen.
Wednesday, 24 October 2018
Unless the LORD builds the house,
the builders labour in vain.
Unless the LORD watches over the city,
the watchmen stand guard in vain. Psalm 127.1
I want the Lord to build my house. I pray that He would lay each block in place. I look to be founded on Him, the firmest foundation.
I pray He will raise up in my life a superstructure of praise and joy, and full acknowledgement to Him. I rejoice in my Lord.
I place myself under His covering. May He watch over me as He gives the keenest watch to that which is precious to Him.
I would seek to live in “the house of the Lord forever”.
I come before You with praise and thanksgiving. I rejoice that You are my Lord. I submit myself fully to Your will. I pray that Your full plan and every purpose will be achieved in my life.
I open myself to You. I ask You to take me, and make me yours. Please show me where I need to bring myself to order. Re-align me where I might get out of alignment. Have Your full and perfect way in me.
I ask You to build my house. Build the house of my life, my living, my family and all relationships, my ministry, my health.
Lord, all that I am and all that I do I commit to You. My life is Yours. Please take me and do what You will and purpose in me, in Jesus’ name I ask. Amen.
Monday, 22 October 2018
Those who trust in the LORD are like Mount Zion,
which cannot be shaken but endures forever.
As the mountains surround Jerusalem,
so the LORD surrounds his people
both now and forevermore. Psalm 125.1,2
What wonderful words of affirming security these are. Mountains surrounding a city give strength and protection, a sense of permanence and immovability.
And this is how it is for God’s people. He is there – permanent, immovable. He is our strength, our security, our refuge. He surrounds us. He is there for us, with us, at all times and we will not be shaken for as long as we put our trust in Him.
This is our position now, and for all time. Praise God!
Lord God, Mighty One, Wonderful Provider,
I press in to You. I place my trust in You and prayerfully ask that You will increase the measure of trust I have in You, and also enable me to demonstrate this trust to all I come in contact with.
I rest in You, most gracious Lord. I receive sustenance and strength from You. I am eased and comforted by You. I know that I will not be shaken if I trust in You. I choose to do this. I go forward knowing that You surround me at all times. You are my refuge and my strength. I sink in to You. I ask You to receive me. Touch me with Your love. Fill me with Your power and wonderful giftings. Lead me in Your holy way, and let the fullness of Your presence outflow in all that I do.
I want to work for You. O how I desire this. But I seek Your clear guidance. I ask You to show me the way and then lead me in that way.
I trust You.
I praise Your name. Hallelujah! Amen.
Saturday, 20 October 2018
Accept, O Lord, the willing praise of my mouth, and teach me your laws.
The praise of my mouth is genuine. I delight in the Lord and I pray that He would accept the praise of my mouth.
I want to please the Lord. I want also to serve Him and to serve His people. I seek to know His Word, to understand His law and precepts, and to live and work in them. I seek the help of the Lord in this. I echo the words of the psalmist, and I say:
Teach me, O Lord, to follow your decrees;
give me understanding,
direct me in the path of your commands,
for there I find delight.
Turn my heart towards your statutes
and not towards selfish gain.
Turn my eyes away from worthless things,
preserve my life according to your word.
I earnestly cry out to You for these things. I so want to know You deeply and intimately. I want to dwell in Your Word and be filled with it. I yearn to serve You and to minister to Your people. Hear these my requests, and answer me.
Fulfil your promise to your servant,
so that You may be feared.
Take away the disgrace I dread,
for your laws are good.
How I long for your precepts!
Preserve my life in your righteousness.
Lord God, I love You.
Please may I serve You? Amen.
Thursday, 18 October 2018
Praise the Lord, all you nations;
extol him, all you peoples.
For great is his love toward us,
and the faithfulness of the Lord
Praise the Lord Psalm 117
Psalm 117 is the shortest psalm in the Psalter, and the shortest chapter in the Bible. It is an extended Hallelujah!
The NIV study notes remind of the great truth that the destiny of all peoples is involved in what God was doing in and for His people Israel.
This is true today. The politically-correct, anti-discriminative world is fast disintegrating. The world is marshalling its forces against God’s people. God will not be without response. Being aware, I shall pray for this world situation but I have no clear knowledge of the outcome. Can prayer bring God’s intervention to avert global disharmony? Or are we truly in that time when the world will literally fall into disorder and chaos?
I’m not going to anguish about this, but surrender it to God in prayer. And my God is faithful. His faithfulness endures forever, and it is partnered by His great love.
Everyone is exhorted to praise the Lord. All the peoples are to extol Him. Do I see this happening? Not yet! But I can praise and extol Him. I can believe (even though I feel this is not yet the case) that His whole church will praise and extol him. And I can pray for and anticipate that day when the whole world – all the nations – will praise the Lord, and all peoples will extol Him.
How good it is to be a child of God, to be loved – greatly, consumingly – by this great, great love and to live in the cover of the faithfulness of the Almighty – forever.
I thank You and I lift Your name. I praise You to the highest heavens. I extol Your great and glorious being. I thank You for Your love and faithfulness.
Precious Lord, I commit myself to You again this day. I look to You for direction and leading. My present and my future are in Your hands. I rejoice! Great is my God.
Lord, I pray for Your chosen people, the Jews. I pray peace and enlightenment for them. I pray a way forward from present fears and adversities,
I pray for all the nations of the earth. I pray that Your time is soon to reclaim the whole world for Yourself.
Lord, mighty God, You are supreme. You are Alpha and Omega. All things are Yours and all respond to Your working.
Take this world, my loving Father, and love it. Love it in Your own unique way. Draw it to You. Draw me to You, in Jesus’ name I ask. Amen.
Wednesday, 17 October 2018
I believe I am finally in the home straight with respect to my chemotherapy treatment. I am feeling better – but I’m still looking to the day when I will feel really great! I thank all those who have prayed for me, and those who continue to pray for me. God bless you, your prayers are greatly appreciated.
Now for some words of truth and thanks to our Heavenly Father.
Know that the LORD is God.
It is he who made us and we are his;
we are his people, the sheep of his pasture. Psalm 100.3
Let me face reality. God made me. I am His. As a shepherd cares for his sheep, so the Lord cares for me. In the times in which this psalm was first written, much of the work of the common folk was pastoral. The role of the shepherd was greatly significant. The shepherd was totally committed to his flock, looking to their every need, never leaving them.
The Lord looks after His people in this total way, but there is more. My Lord and Saviour is Almighty God. He can do all things. Nothing is impossible to Him. This is my Lord. This is my God. This is my shepherd.
I sometimes feel that I’m living in the wrong place. My God can do ANYTHING! – and this is where I need to live.
Your Word is full of Your might, Your power, Your love and Your grace. Yet I seem to get only occasional glimpses of it.
Please, Lord, I want to live in the fullness of Your power. Would You lift me up to live in greater awareness of You, in the fullness of Christ in me, and in abundant anointing and Holy Spirit power? I seek this, Lord, and I ask for it. Your Word says to ask and you will receive.
Wonderful Lord, Holy Father, all things are possible with You and in You and through You. I can do all things. I ask for this. I look for this. Hallelujah! Praise Your wonderful, glorious, marvellous name.
I love You. Amen.
Saturday, 13 October 2018
O God, do not keep silent;
be not quiet, O God, be not still. Psalm 83.1
The psalmist is crying out to God, he is entreating God to be active. God’s precious and cherished people are being threatened. The nations have conspired against God’s people.
“Come,” they say, “let us destroy them as a nation, that the name of Israel be remembered no more.”(v4)
The psalmist sees the nations conspiring against Israel as with one mind. He exhorts God to act, and to act against them:
Make them like tumbleweed, O my God,
like chaff before the wind.
As fire consumes the forest
or a flame sets the mountains ablaze,
so pursue them with your tempest
and terrify them with your storm. (vv 13,14)
I see direct parallels in the world today. It is as if the nations are conspiring against Israel, God’s chosen people. The world does not seem to be aware that it is challenging Almighty God. And the deceits of many human initiatives would appear to be growing and gaining power. Have people’s minds – sane, intelligent folk of the western world – been deceived? It would seem so! Yet God is greater. The psalmist entreated Him all those years ago for the situation of his day. I entreat the same faithful, unwavering God in the troubled times I live in.
Lord God, Mighty Redeemer,
My concern is similar to that of the psalmist. Your chosen land of Israel is under attack, seemingly by most of the world. And, the majority would appear to be deeply deceived. I cry out to You, Lord God, to expose the deception and bring a true awareness to world leaders who are acting so foolishly at this present time. All over the world the actions of society seem to be getting more out of hand. I entreat You to act and be not still, and I ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen.
Friday, 12 October 2018
O God, you are my God,
earnestly I seek you;
my soul thirsts for you,
in a dry and weary land
where there is no water. Psalm 63.1
Again I find myself echoing the words of the psalmist. I cry out for God. I am hungry and thirsty for Him. He alone is the way for me. The land in which I am living seems to be getting spiritually drier and more weary. The living water is being ignored and rejected in these days of Mammon.
I cry out for God – for myself and for this nation. And even beyond. The world needs saving. The Saviour has come. The light came into the world and was not received by the world.
God’s will is not dependent upon the world’s reception. God’s will is clear throughout His Holy Scriptures. He passionately loves mankind. He is sure to save. I rejoice in this. I cry out to my great God in my own behalf and for the whole of humanity.
You are my God. I rejoice in knowing that I am Yours and that You are there for me.
I earnestly seek You. You are my daily bread and the water of my life. I cannot exist without You. Hear my prayer and be with me today.
I pray also for the rest of humanity. Many know You, but many do not.
Dear Lord, please do not delay. Wrap Your arms around this world, and bring rescue, forgiveness, salvation and safety. The world needs You but does not know it. I cry out on behalf of the world. Hear my cry. Answer my prayer.
Great God, lead me forward into this day. Direct my steps. Let all I do be pleasing to You, in Jesus’ name I ask. Amen.
Tuesday, 9 October 2018
The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit;
a broken and contrite heart,
O God, you will not despise. Psalm 51.17
NIV Study Bible notes: What pleases God more than sacrifices is a humble heart that looks to him when troubles crush and penitently pleads for mercy when sin has been committed.
This beautiful psalm is David’s humble prayer for forgiveness and cleansing. David had committed the gross sin of adultery with Bathsheba, following which he had arranged the murder of Uriah. (2 Sam. 12) He had sinned greatly against God: Then David said to Nathan, “I have sinned against the LORD.” His penitence is genuine. In despair of his own foolish action, he offers God a broken spirit and contrite heart.
I thank You for the amazing person of David. He did many foolish things, committing grievous sin against You. He also did many fine, valiant and honourable deeds. He was truly a mixture in character. But You loved him. He is called a man after Your own heart. Dear Lord, what a wonderful way to be seen. To be close to Your heart suggests to me that David was “of the right heart.” He himself commends a broken and contrite heart as being true to You. His words indicate that he is so.
Lord, may I always offer You a contrite spirit. May my heart always be open to You, broken and contrite in manner, yielding and ready to be taken by you and moulded to Your way.
I offer You my heart. This is me, Lord. The most of me I can give You is my heart, for the rest of me comes with it.
Take me, I’m Yours. Amen.
Sunday, 7 October 2018
My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. Where can I go and meet with God? Psalm 42.2
I join the psalmist and cry out with him in the first half of this verse. My soul indeed cries out, I thirst for God, for the living God. My God is not an inanimate object. He is alive. He is life. He gives life. I thirst for the life that only God can give me. Yes, I feel alive in Him, but I want more. I am eager for more, wonderful, miracle-working life power from God to flow into, and out from, my life. I am totally caught up in Him. He is the way, the only way for me. And I want to go His way one hundred percent.
The second part of this verse suggests that the psalmist is presently prevented from being at the temple to meet with God. I rejoice that the temple is not a distant place for me, a place where I might sometimes find difficulty attending. No, this does not apply to me. For the temple, now, is within me. Through the precious sacrifice of Jesus, the veil of the temple was torn and the way opened up for me to enter God’s presence directly. The temple, where I might enter the presence of my almighty and wonderful God is not a fixed building, but is the sweetness of my heart. Jesus allows me to become the temple of the Holy Spirit. I can meet God anytime, within my own being.
This is not something to be abused, but rather treasured and honoured. The God od all creation, God of gods and Lord of lords meets with me in the intimacy of my own heart. I need no intermediary. O, praise God, that I can live in such wonderful relationship with Him.
I thank You for this wonderful reminder of your closeness to me. I am able to meet You at any time. Indeed, I am with You at this very moment. Right now, the neighbours are chatting just an arm’s length away, but they are not intruding. I am with You. Dear, sweet Lord this is the third experience I have had of this nature in just over a week. Are You drawing me closer to You? I hope so. Something is happening in our relationship. I pray – I ask You for a more constant awareness of Your presence, a growing knowing in me that I live with You each second of each day.
Precious, precious Lord. Holy One of all. Take me. Lead me. Fill me, and fulfil me, in Jesus’ name I ask. Amen.
Friday, 5 October 2018
I waited patiently for the Lord;
he turned to me and heard my cry. Psalm 40.1
Have there been times when I have been impatient with God? I’m sure there have!
Are there times when I wait for Him and He seems not to be there? Perhaps, but I’m feeling more and more strongly that the fault is with me and not with Him.
These words bring re-assurance to me. I will wait. But if I wait with patience, with forbearance, He will turn to me and hear my cry. I don’t see this as God playing silly games. I do see it as a growing of me, a growing in me. I am prepared to wait. I do so in the assurance that He will come. The waiting takes me into the stillness and the rest of God. God’s rest is so important. I will enter into it by being still before Him. As I am still, and as I enter His rest, so I will meet with Him, I will see Him as He turns to me and I will know that He hears all that I say to Him. Praise God!
I thank You that You’re with me right now. In this present stillness I feel Your rest. I am in that rest with You. This is a most wonderful place to be. Certainly, life is going on all around me, but I am at rest, at peace, with You.
I am reminded of last week when You met with me in the shopping centre.
Lord God, I rejoice. I feel as if I am moving closer to You. I praise You. I thank You.
I will wait patiently for You. I shall practice the waiting. I shall practice being still, and entering Your rest. I will look for, and see, You turn, and I will know that You hear me.
Thank You, dear Lord.
Lead me through this day. I surrender to You.
Precious Lord. Amen.
Wednesday, 3 October 2018
If the Lord delights in a man’s way,
he makes his steps firm;
though he stumble, he will not fall,
for the Lord upholds him with his hand. Psalm 37.23,24
Psalm 37 is a wonderful song of encouragement. It’s theme of contrast between the wicked and the righteous gives much insight and hope to those who struggle to do good in the Lord. Godly wisdom pervades the whole of the psalm. It exhorts us not to fret or be envious of evil men and their apparent success, for it will not last.
I have seen a wicked and ruthless man
flourishing like a green tree in its native soil,
but he soon passed away and was no more;
though I looked for him, he could not be found. (vv 35,36)
More than this, there is great encouragement for the righteous – for all of us who aspire to be good and Godly in the Lord.
Trust in the Lord and do good;
dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.(v3)
Trust in the Lord is Godly fear in right outworking. God is good and anyone trusting in Him will know and experience the goodness that is God.
The phrase dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture encourages me to receive what comes to me from the good (and Godly) provision in life. I am not to shun the benefits that might come my way, but accept them and enjoy them.
I love you. I desire the closest relationship with You, and the fullest measure of You in me. I yearn to show this to others, to share it with them and to bring them into real, deep and sweet relationship with You.
I determine not to be swayed by what I see of the world around me, nor to be influenced by its ways and apparent successes.
I wait upon You. I will be still, my gracious Lord, and wait upon You.
I trust You, Lord. I surrender completely to You. Have Your way in me, in Jesus’ name I ask. Amen.
Monday, 1 October 2018
My whole being will exclaim,
“Who is like you, O LORD?
You rescue the poor from those
too strong for them,
the poor and needy from those
who rob them.” Psalm 35.10
There is no one like my God. He is the Father to the fatherless. He is the husband of widows. He is strength to the weak, and riches to the poor. He is all these things. He rescues, He strengthens, He upholds, He sustains. And this is wonderful. I rejoice. I call out in riotous exclamations of joy and wonder.
But I love Him for who He is. All that He does is most wonderful, but it is who He is that captivates me. He is my Father, Friend and Lover. I rejoice in this. I love Him.
I thank You for all the wonderful things that You do. I rejoice that You are there at all times for those who need You. I am inspired by the wonder and majesty of Your Creation.
But, most of all, I love You. I see depth, promise and a great appreciation in Your love. I thank You that You love me, and also that You enable me to love.
Lord, please grant that I might love, more and more, as You do. Please touch my heart with Your heart. Fill me with insight to see people as You see them. Show me how You would have me connect with them.
Lord, please grant that I might love, more and more, as You do. Please touch my heart with Your heart. Fill me with insight to see people as You see them. Show me how You would have me connect with them.
I love You. Dear, gracious, sweet Lord I love You, but I do not want to contain this love to myself. I want to share it freely, outrageously.
Allow me, Lord. Give me opportunities. Open doors for me. Let me share Your love, in Jesus’ name I ask. Amen.