Only A Stand-By God?
Judges 11:7 – Jephthah said to them, “Didn’t you hate me and drive me from my father’s house? Why do you come to me now, when you are in trouble?’
My Musing – This is the way we sometimes treat God. We have little use (or no time) for Him when things are going good. But, once the trouble starts or we need something we go to Him asking for His help.
My Advice – Keep God close in good times and in bad times. Never be in a position where He would be justified in saying to you “why do you come to me now, when you are in trouble?”
Not A One
Joshua 21:45 – Not one of all the Lord’s good promises to the house of Israel failed; everyone was fulfilled. (NIV 1978)
My Musing – God is trustworthy. He will keep all of His good promises. There are also promises that are not so good for those who disobey. But God is merciful to those who ask His forgiveness. There may be consequences to sin, but there will also be mercy and forgiveness.
My Advice – Do not be discouraged when God’s answers to prayer seem slow in coming. God is faithful and will keep His promises. Only He knows when the time is right. So be patient. Also, be encouraged even when you experience the consequences of sins you have confessed, that God is merciful. He has forgiven and the consequences could have been much worse if unconfessed.
When God Seems Distant
Deuteronomy 4:29 – But if you seek the Lord your God, you will find Him if you look for Him with all your heart and with all your soul. (NIV 1978)
My Musing – When we cannot seem to find God, it is not because He is distant or making things difficult. We may simply have not sought Him as earnestly and as diligently as we should.
My Advice – God will seem distant to you at times. It will never be because He has moved away from you. Perhaps you have moved away from Him? Or perhaps you are not sincere enough in your seeking (seeking with wrong motives or a wrong attitude)? At such a time it is good to assess your relationship. Like the prodigal son’s father, He will be looking for your return.
Step 6: Pray On All Occasions
And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. (Ephesians 6:18)
A: Discovering the Truth
B. Exploring the Truth
The truth is, we would never dream of imposing upon someone with stature, such as the President of the United States, with urgent personal requests or patronizing platitudes that do little more than burn up oxygen and squander his or her valuable time, even if we did have a personal relationship with them. Yet much too often this is all that our prayer life consists of. We are passionate when the communication is important to us (urgent requests) and passionless when it is not (dry recitations). What kind of relationship is it when it is one-way? Continue reading “Pray On All Occasions”
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 – Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. (NIV 1984)
In the middle of a forest, there was a hunter who was suddenly confronted by a huge, mean bear. In his fear, all attempts to shoot the bear were unsuccessful. Continue reading “Giving Thanks”
Genesis 32:7, 9 – In great fear and distress Jacob divided the people. Then Jacob prayed. (NIV 1978)
My Musing – How typical of us when we encounter danger or difficulties. Our first reaction, Like Jacob, is to take matters into our hands, by planning and taking action to solve the problem or get out of the situation. Then, almost as an afterthought we bring God into it and ask Him to deliver us. At the very least, this is backwards.
My Advice – Always make it your first priority to seek out God in prayer whenever you face a problem or danger. Do what you can that seems prudent and consistent with God’s Word in the situation, but do not be afraid to wait on God for a solution before taking action. Because sometimes, our actions make matters worse rather than better.
I Got This One God
Genesis 15:6, 8 – Abram believed the Lord, and He credited it to him as righteousness. But Abram said, “O, Sovereign Lord, how can I know?” (NIV 1978)
My Musing – Abram believed that God could do the “impossible” (give him countless offspring when he was so old), but doubted He would deliver on the easy things (give him possession of the land). God is a God of the possible and the impossible, we should not doubt Him.
My Advice – Do not be reluctant to take both your hard and easy problems to God. We sometimes have a tendency to “do it ourselves” on the small stuff, reserving the big stuff for God. Often, the small things turn into big things that might have been avoided if we went to God at the outset.