A firm foundation

Isaiah 28:16 NLT – Therefore, this is what the Sovereign LORD says: “Look! I am placing a foundation stone in Jerusalem, a firm and tested stone. It is a precious cornerstone that is safe to build on. Whoever believes need never be shaken.

This foundation that Isaiah was talking about is the coming Messiah – the Christ. Fast forward 2700 plus years, we now have faith in Jesus Christ. He is our firm foundation that does not change. Our lives and circumstances change. But Jesus does not. Hebrews 13:8 tells us that He is the same yesterday, today and forever. It makes sense to build our lives on the eternal, unchanging, unshakeable foundation that is Jesus.

Prayer

Thank You Jesus that I can build my life on You. You are my solid foundation that does not change. Help me to remain anchored firmly to You each and every day. Amen.

Four ways to get wisdom

Proverbs 1:1-7 NLT These are the proverbs of Solomon, David’s son, king of Israel. [2] Their purpose is to teach people wisdom and discipline, to help them understand the insights of the wise. [3] Their purpose is to teach people to live disciplined and successful lives, to help them do what is right, just, and fair. [4] These proverbs will give insight to the simple, knowledge and discernment to the young. [5] Let the wise listen to these proverbs and become even wiser. Let those with understanding receive guidance [6] by exploring the meaning in these proverbs and parables, the words of the wise and their riddles. [7] Fear of the LORD is the foundation of true knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and discipline.

If you want wisdom from God there are a number of ways to get it.

1. Read Proverbs – the first few verses of the Book of Proverbs tell us their purpose – to give wisdom and understanding. Read a chapter of Proverbs a day to become wise. Read whatever chapter the date it is today. Then do the next one tomorrow.

2. Ask for wisdom – The best way to receive wisdom is ask God. James 1:5 says, “If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking.” God wants to give you wisdom and it is just a prayer away.

3. Spend time – to become wise we need to spend time with wise people. Wisdom has a way of rubbing off Proverbs 13:20 NIV reminds us to “Walk with the wise and become wise, for a companion of fools suffers harm.”

4. Fear God – the last verse in the passage above tells us that the “Fear of the Lord is the beginning on wisdom”. Having a reverentual fear of God puts God in the right place and us in our. We need to remember that His ways are above our ways and His thoughts are above our thoughts (Isaiah 55:8).

Prayer

Dear God, I ask for wisdom today. I seek understanding from You. I pray that as I read Your Word in Proverbs that I will grow wiser. Help me to spend time with the right people so their wisdom will impact me too. Help me to understand Your ways and thoughts are above mine. Amen.‭‭

Generosity from God

I was reading 2 Corinthians for my devotions this morning and something in chapter 9 reminded me of how God’s blessings not only bless us, but it flows on to others.

2 Corinthians 9:10-14 NLT – For God is the one who provides seed for the farmer and then bread to eat. In the same way, he will provide and increase your resources and then produce a great harvest of generosity in you. [11] Yes, you will be enriched in every way so that you can always be generous. And when we take your gifts to those who need them, they will thank God. [12] So two good things will result from this ministry of giving-the needs of the believers in Jerusalem will be met, and they will joyfully express their thanks to God. [13] As a result of your ministry, they will give glory to God. For your generosity to them and to all believers will prove that you are obedient to the Good News of Christ. [14] And they will pray for you with deep affection because of the overflowing grace God has given to you. [15] Thank God for this gift too wonderful for words!

Seven things jumped out at me today…

1. God provides the seed. Which in turn provides more seeds, which provides more seeds.

2. God’s provision helps us to be generous. 

3. When we are generous peoples needs are met.

4. When we are generous people praise God.

5. Our generosity proves we are obedient to the message of Christ.

6. People will pray for us with deep affection because or our generosity.

7. We need to be thankful to God because of His blessing that blesses us in so many ways.

It is amazing how God blesses us in so many ways. He provides for us, but in that provision there are many more blessings. Not only are we provided for, but when we extend His generosity to others the blessings are mulitplied. 

We receive more seed, people see the genuineness of our faith, people praise God and we get to be a part of God’s plan to bless those around us.

Dear God, thanks You for Your many belssings to us. I pray that we will take these blessings and be generous with them. Thank You that we are blessed to be a blessing. Amen.

Power from on high

Isaiah 40:28-31 NLT is one of my favourite passages on Scripture. It says…

[28] Have you never heard? Have you never understood? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of all the earth. He never grows weak or weary. No one can measure the depths of his understanding. [29] He gives power to the weak and strength to the powerless. [30] Even youths will become weak and tired, and young men will fall in exhaustion. [31] But those who trust in the LORD will find new strength. They will soar high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint.

There are four things I love about this passage. Four simple, but profound thoughts.

1. God is the all wise, all powerful, eternal Creator, whom no-one can fully understand.
2. He never grows tired and weary like human beings do.
3. He gives power and strength to the weary and weak from His unlimited resources.
4. He promises to help us soar like eagles and not grow weary.

Understanding that our all powerful Creator empowers us is a key to being effective in this life of following Christ. His power enables us to do all He created us to do.

God Bless,
Dave

True contentment and support

Philippians 4:10-14 NLT – How I praise the Lord that you are concerned about me again. I know you have always been concerned for me, but you didn’t have the chance to help me. [11] Not that I was ever in need, for I have learned how to be content with whatever I have. [12] I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little. [13] For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength. [14] Even so, you have done well to share with me in my present difficulty.

There are two things in this passage I like…

1. Contentment – Paul understood true contentment. He knew what it was to have a lot and a full stomach. He also knew what it was to be in lack and hungry. He learned with all he had been through to understand that whether full or empty, in abundance or lack, that God is in control and He supplies our needs. Paul know he could do all through Christ.

2. Support – In this passage we see God supplied for Paul’s missionary journeys through the church in Philippi. Paul says they were the only ones who supported him all the way though. He was truly grateful and made mention of it in his letter as a reward for their kindness. It struck me today that I was reading about their kindness nearly 2000 years later!

These points make me think of God’s provision in my life and I that need to be grateful in the good times and the bad. It also reminded me of the importance of supporting those who travel preaching the Gospel and planting churches.

God Bless,

Dave

Judgement and reward

2 Corinthians 5:10 NLT – For we must all stand before Christ to be judged. We will each receive whatever we deserve for the good or evil we have done in this earthly body.

Paul is talking about our new heavenly bodies in this section (v1-10). He says our earthly bodies groan and sigh and age, but one day we will have our new heavenly bodies. He uses the analogy of leaving this earthly tent behind. In verse 10 he finishes with a sobering thought – standing before Christ to be judged. This is to be judged for what we have done for Christ as Christians. What we have done with what we know. It reminds us to be about Kingdom business is this life and to make our lives count. Let us make today count for His Kingdom.

Dear God, I pray today I can be about Your Kingdom business. I pray that whatever I do and say will bring glory to You and expand Your Kingdom today. I pray that when I stand before You in judgement I will hear the words “Well done good and faithful servant”. Amen.

Speak of God’s goodness

Isaiah 63:7 NLT says, “I will tell of the LORD’s unfailing love. I will praise the LORD for all he has done. I will rejoice in his great goodness to Israel, which he has granted according to his mercy and love.”

A large part of our testimonies as Christians is telling people about the blessings we have received from God. We can talk about His unfailing love for us, all He has done for us in Christ, and His mercy in not giving us what we deserved. Just like the people in the Old Testament praised God for His blessings to Israel, we need to speak of His blessings towards us.

Dear God, help me to speak of Your wonderful blessings to us. Help me to proclaim Your greatness to the those around me today. Amen

Protection and comfort


Psalm 23:1-4 NLT[1] The LORD is my shepherd; I have all that I need. [2] He lets me rest in green meadows; he leads me beside peaceful streams. [3] He renews my strength. He guides me along right paths, bringing honor to his name. [4] Even when I walk through the darkest valley, I will not be afraid, for you are close beside me. Your rod and your staff protect and comfort me.

God promises to be with us always. He says He will protect and comfort us. If we think about protection it is like God surrounding to keep us safe from harm. Comfort is when we feel bad and we need help to feel better. I like the imagery of God leading us by still waters. It is both a safe place and a comfortable place to be.

Dear God, thank You that I am both protected and comforted by You. Thank You also that You lead me by still waters that restore my soul. Amen.

Connected forever

Romans 8:38-39 NLT says, “And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow-not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. [39] No power in the sky above or in the earth below-indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Once we are connected with Jesus Christ as our Lord and Saviour, NOTHING can separate us from God’s love. It is an eternal bond that cannot be broken. We are adopted as God’s children (John 1:12). We are co-heirs with Christ (Romans 8:17). Jesus had prepared a place for us and He is coming back for us (John 14:2-3). Our salvation is finished (John 19:30).

Dear God, thank You that nothing can separate me from Your love. I thank You for all that Jesus has done in saving me. I thank You that there is a place prepared for me in heaven and that one day Jesus is coming back for me. Amen.

Honesty before God

Proverbs 11:3-5 NLT says, “Honesty guides good people; dishonesty destroys treacherous people. [4] Riches won’t help on the day of judgment, but right living can save you from death. [5] The godly are directed by honesty; the wicked fall beneath their load of sin.”

Honesty directs our way and keeps us in a right place before God. Dishonesty destroys people and their sin is like a heavy load on their back. We will all stand before God to give account – both the honest people and the dishonest. Let us purpose in our hearts to be honest before God.

Dear God, help me to be an honest person. Help me to walk in Your ways and be obedient to You. Amen.