Lord You Promised

By , January 15, 2018

“For the eyes of the Lord range throughout the earth
to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him.”
2 Chronicles 16:9 (NIV)

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“Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power.” Ephesians 6:10 (NIV)

When I was a typical skinny teenager my older brother bought me a muscle building set for my 14th birthday. I worked out vigorously for 3-4 months but the desired muscles did not come as I had anticipated. I was still as skinny as ever!

Now as a much older person I still seek to have great strength but in a very different way. My concern is no longer to be physically strong but rather to have the strength that the Lord gives to His people in response to their disciplining themselves as described in Ephesians 6:11-18.

In our first verse today we have a promise from the Lord that says He is searching the whole earth to find people to strengthen. God has given His children this promise of help to encourage them in the daily grind of life.

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Where Can I Hide?

By , January 14, 2018

“She gave this name to the Lord who spoke to her:
‘You are the God who sees me, ‘ for she said,
‘I have now seen the One who sees me.’”
Genesis 16:13 (NIV)

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One of the things depressed and suffering people often do is to seek a place to hide from everyone. People in pain will seek a place of solitude to suffer alone. The person may put a sign on their hospital room’s door that reads, “No Visitors”. Or they will not answer the phone when it rings.

Hagar, the person in our verse today, was hiding from the woman who afflicted her. She sought a lonely place to be by herself as she suffered rejection and cruelty from Sarah her mistress.

Hagar found comfort in her solitude when the Lord came to her and spoke to her about her problem. She was a child of God and no child of God can hide from Him. He sees everyone and comes to His children to talk with them and offer encouragement as He did with Hagar.

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The Ministry Of Tears

By , January 13, 2018

“Jesus wept.”
John 11:35

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It was 35 years ago last Christmas Eve. That day an elderly saint of God had called me to her home for an urgent visit. I knew she was soon going to heaven but I did not realize her departure was as close as it proved to be.

She and her husband lived in a gracious bungalow in Port Credit as it was then known. They had bought the home 50 years earlier and had quite a large lot. They were childless.

The house was unusually quiet and the interior was only dimly lit. I sat with her in the living room full of beautiful furniture and she told me her life story. She had married someone who was not a believer. He had made their marriage a miserable affair, but the amazing grace we sing about kept her in the relationship.

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Heaven’s Library

By , January 12, 2018

“Then those who feared the Lord talked with each other,
and the Lord listened and heard.
A scroll of remembrance was written in his presence
concerning those who feared the Lord and honored his name.”
Malachi 3:16 (NIV)

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When the Bible speaks about “the fear of the Lord” we all recognize that the term “fear” does not mean firstly to be afraid, or terrified of God. Fear in the biblical sense is more the notion of respect or honor.

The fear of the Lord is that attitude of heart and mind that recognizes the glory and majesty of God and responds with appropriate humility and subjection.

In passages like Isaiah 6, Mark 4:41, Luke 5:26; Revelation 1:17, we see how the vision of the Lord or the demonstration of His power brought the appropriate reaction of fear from those who witnessed the event. So in some sense we should have a “healthy fear” of God.

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Amazed At Jesus

By , January 11, 2018

“When his parents saw him, they were astonished.”
Luke 2:48 (NIV)

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“All the people were astonished and said, ‘Could this be the Son of David?'” Matthew 12:23 (NIV)

There is no doubt that the people who encountered our Lord while He was among us were remarkably affected by His words and actions. Jesus made a very deep and lasting impression on all who met Him.

There was a small but growing group of people who learned to be jealous of His popularity with the common people. A segment of the population became hateful of His wisdom and remarkable teaching. Jesus was able to give clear and compelling answers to their trick questions—designed to trap Him.

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