Genesis 16, Nehemiah 5, Matthew 15, Acts 15

Scripture

“You are the God who sees me,” for she said, “I have now seen the One who sees me.” Genesis 16:13 (NIV)

Observation

heart (blame)

You are the God who sees me … an excerpt of Hagar’s conversation with an angel in the desert as she flees Abram and Sarai. (Sarai blames God because she can’t have children; then blames Abram for getting Hagar pregnant after she told him to take Hagar as a wife. It’s easy to blame when things don’t go as imagined.)

In Nehemiah, he wants God to remember him and all that he had done. (Economic crisis and complaints against their own countrymen who took advantage of the poor. Doesn’t complaining seem justified under the circumstances?)

In Matthew, Jesus explains that the things that come out of the mouth come from the heart. (The Pharisees looked for anything out of place and criticized the disciples for breaking traditions. Pride often gets in the way.)

And in Acts (15:8), Peter says, “God, who knows the heart, showed that he accepted them by giving the Holy Spirit to them, just as he did us.” (There was some disagreement on salvation of men who weren’t circumcised. That’s the way it is.)

Application

I noticed a recurrence of blame and criticism throughout these chapters. All kinds of fault finding and finger pointing speaking to me. A bit convicting. So I tried to focus on something else: heart.  I am not surprised that while I looked for a connection that I could try to distance myself from, God still finds me, sees me, speaks to me.  (Oh, the words I’ve spoken, thoughts I’ve had, and blame I’ve placed on others–these things taking root in my own heart. Sometimes things don’t go my way, or seem completely unfair, or attack my pride, or challenge my thinking.)

Prayer

Father, you are the God who sees me. You see into my heart and know my innermost thoughts. There is no hiding from you. (Lord, when I’m tempted to blame others for my unhappiness, help me to stop short of it. Please bring it to my attention, so that I can choose forgiveness or hold myself accountable. Help me to stop any bitterness from taking root in me.)

Courtney (66books365)

4 Comments

Filed under Genesis, M'Cheyne Bible reading plan, Old Testament

4 responses to “Genesis 16, Nehemiah 5, Matthew 15, Acts 15

  1. Courtney,

    How many books have you read so far? I am going to watch you and seen how your doing. 66 books is alot to read. I was looking for blogs with happiness in it and you showed up? I love your prayer to God! He is awesome isn’t he! I pray for you today and for the people who are displaced due to the hurricane in Haiti. God Bless you Mona!

  2. Courtney, I like how you tie all the passages together with “heart”. Great thoughts!

  3. You have written with a humbled heart. I am blessed by knowing that I am not alone in feelings that are not always stellar. God sees all of it and loves us anyway. Praises to his unconditional love.

  4. Sue

    Mona – I went to your blog and I tried to post a comment on one of your posts but something got messed up and I don’t think it worked. Anyway, hope you come visit our blog again!! We are reading through the Bible in one year. There is a set of contributors already scheduled for the year but our hope is that others do the reading along with us – and comment along! Again, hope you stop by again some time! Sue

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