“When the Lord your God destroys the nations whose land he is giving you, you will take over their land and settle in their towns and homes. Then you must set apart three cities of refuge in the land the Lord your God is giving you…And if the Lord your God enlarges your territory, as he swore to your ancestors, and gives you all the land he promised them, you must designate three additional cities of refuge. (He will give you this land if you are careful to obey all the commands I have given you – if you always love the Lord your God and walk in his ways.)” Duet. 19:1-9 NLT
Many who came to these cities were literally running for their lives and God gave them a place to go. Where/who do I run to? I hope that I am running to the Lord. He is my shield and hiding place. But, when I run to other things he is always there welcoming me back with open arms. I think on the picture of the sparrow safe in the Lord’s hands. That is where I want to be and know that I am.
“When you go out to fight your enemies and you face horses and chariots and an army greater than your own, do not be afraid. The Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, is with you! When you prepare for battle, the priest must come forward to speak to the troops. He will say to them, ‘Listen to me, all you men of Israel! Do not be afraid as you go out and fight your enemies today! Do not lose heart or panic or trouble before them. For the Lord your God is going with you! He will fight for you against your enemies, and he will give you victory!” Deut. 20:1-4 NLT
Like the Israelites, I sometimes feel overwhelmed and defeated. God told them that he was always with them & already reuscued them from potential danger. It comforts me to know that he is not just with me, but he goes before me. Paul understood this. He continued ministering to others even when he was a shipwrecked prisoner.
“In that region there was an estate of the leading citizen of the island, whose name was Publius, who received us and entertained us courteously for three days. And it happened that the father of Publius lay sick of a fever and dysentery. Paul went in to him and prayed, and he laid his hands on him and healed him. So when this was done, the rest of the island who had diseases also came and were healed. They also honored us in many ways; and when we departed, they provided such things as were necessary.” Acts 28:7-9 NLT
Dear Father, I am so grateful that I can run to you. Thank you for your patience and mercy. Your are my safe place. I pray that I can share with others from the confident trust I have in you. Amen.
“For the next two years, Paul lived in Rome at his own expense. He welcomed all who visited him, boldly proclaiming the Kingdom of God and teaching about the Lord Jesus Christ. And no one tried to stop him.” Acts 28:30 NLT
Filed under 66 Books, Acts, Bible in a year reading plan, Deuteronomy, New Testament, Old Testament
Tagged as 66 books, Bible reading plan, Boldness, Courage, Faith, fear, hard heart, healing, Holy Spirit, miracles, New Testament, Old Testament, refuge, rescue
“Then the Lord said to Moses, “Give the following instructions to the people of Israel. “When you finally settle in the land I am giving you, you will offer special gifts as a pleasing aroma to the Lord. These gifts may take the form of a burnt offering, a sacrifice to fulfill a vow, a voluntary offering, or an offering at any of your annual festivals, and they may be taken from your herds of cattle or your flocks of sheep and goats.” Numbers 15:1-3 NLT
Lord, I desire to offer my life to you in worship. “Let it rise like incense, my whole life a fragrance. Every ounce here broken at Your feet. Every breath an offering. My heart cries, these lungs sing over You. My worthy King of Kings.” -Alabaster Heart, Bethel Music & Kalley Heiligenthal.
“One night the Lord spoke to Paul in a vision and told him, “Don’t be afraid! Speak out! Don’t be silent! For I am with you, and no one will attack and harm you, for many people in this city belong to me.” So Paul stayed there for the next year and a half, teaching the word of God.” Acts 18:9-11 NLT
I went to a Wednesday night service at my church. There was a simplicity to it that drew me in. I sat and listened to God. And I realized how distracted I have been lately. I pray that I stay quiet enough to hear your voice. I pray for more boldness & courage. I am thankful for examples like Paul. Thank you that You are still speaking Lord.
“Lord. you have been our dwelling place in all generations. Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever you have formed the earth and the world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God.” Psalm 90:1&2 ESV
Dear Father, Help me to order my days to seek after you. To do what you have called me to do. Thank you for your faithfulness. Amen.
“So teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom…Satisfy us in the morning with your steadfast love, that we may rejoice and be glad all our days. Let the favor of the Lord God be upon us, and establish the work of our hands upon us; yes, establish the work of our hands!” Psalm 90:12-17 ESV
Filed under 66 Books, Acts, New Testament, Numbers, Psalms
Tagged as 66 books, aroma, Bible in a year, Boldness, Courage, faithfulness, New Testament, offerings, Old Testament, remembering, sacrifice, stillness, worship
“On the eighth day each person being purified must bring two male lambs and a one-year-old female lamb, all with no defects, along with a grain offering of six quarts of above flour moistened with olive oil, and a cup of olive oil. Then the officiating priest will present that person with purification, along with the offerings, before the Lord at the entrance of the Tabernacle. This is the law for any leprous sore and scale, for the leprosy of a garment and of a house, for a swelling and a scab and a bright spot, to teach when it is unclean and when it is clean. This is the law of leprosy.” Leviticus 14:10&11, 54-57 NLT
God told the Israelites how to cleanse healed lepers and how to diagnose leprosy so they could avoid it or treat it. These laws were given for the people’s protection. I wonder if many of God’s laws seemed strange to the Israelites? I know that sometimes they seem strange to me. But, his laws helped the Israelites avoid physical and spiritual sickness.
“The passage of scripture he was reading was this: “He was lead like a sheep to the slaughter. And as a lamb is silent before the shearers, he did not open his mouth. He was humiliated and received no justice. Who can speak of his descendants? For his life was taken from the earth.” The eunuch asked Philip, “Tell me, was the prophet talking about him or someone else?” So beginning with the same Scripture, Philip told him the new good news about Jesus. Then Philip opened his mouth, and beginning at this Scripture, preached Jesus to him. Now as they went down the road, they came to some water. And the eunuch said, “See, here is the water. What hinders me from being baptized?” Then Philip said, “If you believe with all your heart, you may.” And he answers and said, “I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.” Acts 8:32-37 NLT
Philip lead this man to Jesus using the Old Testament. I am reminded of how all of the Bible applies to me today. I can see how purposeful & intentional that the Lord is. He doesn’t waste anything.
“But the believers who were scattered preached the Good News about Jesus wherever they went. Philip, for example, went to the city of Samaria and told the people there about the Messiah. Crowds listened intently to Philip because they eager to hear his message and see the miraculous signs he did. Many evil spirits were cast out, screaming as they left their victims. And many who had been paralyzed or lame were healed. So there was great joy in that city…Then they laid hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit.” Acts 8:4 -17 NLT
Thank you Father for your Holy Spirit. That the same power that lives in Christ, lives in me. Many of these Christians were facing persecution, but that didn’t stop them from sharing the gospel. What things hold me back? Thank you Father for Your word. That it is truth. And I can stand on it when the storms of life come. Amen.
Filed under 66 Books, Acts, Leviticus, New Testament, Old Testament
Tagged as 66 books, baptism, Bible in a year, Holy Spirit, Jesus, Lamb, miracles, New Testament, Old Testament, Simon the Sorcerer
“Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you should labor, and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work…For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested on the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.” Exodus 20:8-11 ESV
My pastor asked this question on Sunday, “Am I working for rest? Or am I working from rest?” More often than not, I am working for rest. But, when I take a Sabbath, I am energized to do the work that God has called me to do. When I quiet my heart and mind before Him, I remember that I’m not in control. I don’t have to frantically live my life and worry that I am falling behind. “Rest. in His strength to do it, Rest in His ways above ours, Rest in Him who is with you, in you & is 100% for you.” (Ann Voskamp)
“And God spoke all these words, saying, “I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery.” Exodus 20:1 ESV
Am I resting in His care for me?
“And he said to them, “I have earnestly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer. For I tell you I will not eat it until it is fulfilled in the kingdom of God.” And he took a cup, and when he had given thanks he said, “Take this, and divide it among yourselves. For I tell you that from now on I will not drink of the fruit of the vine until the Kingdom of God comes.” Luke 22:15-18 ESV
When I take communion, I reflect on what God did for me. That He paid the ultimate sacrifice for my sins, because He loves me that much. It strengthens my faith, knowing that His promises will be fulfilled.
Thank you Father for your faithfulness. Thank you that your law is for my protection, because you know what is best for me. Thank you for your grace and mercy. I love you. Amen.
Filed under Exodus, Luke, New Testament, Old Testament
Tagged as 66 books, Faith, idols, Law vs. Grace, mercy, New Covenant, New Testament, Old Testament, Remembrance, Sabbath rest, sacrifice
“While they were in prison, Pharaoh’s cup-bearer and baker each had a dream one night, and each had its own meaning, When Joseph saw them the next morning, he noticed that they both looked upset. “Why do you look so worried today?” he asked them. And they replied, “We both had dreams last night, but no one can tell us what they mean.” “Interpreting dreams is God’s business,” Joseph replied. “Go ahead and tell me your dreams.” Genesis 40:5-8 NLT
Sometimes I can get so caught up with my struggles that I miss how God might want to use me in someone else’s life. Joseph had a renewed perspective and insight. God put these men in his path. He was able to minister to them while he was waiting for his own breakthrough. Joseph trusted in God and his provision for his life. Do I? God was with Joseph and he showed him favor. God didn’t forget Joseph & he doesn’t forget me.
“What is the price of five sparrows-two copper coins? Yet God does not forget a single one of them. And the very hairs on your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are more valuable to God than a whole flock of sparrows.” Luke 12:6&7 NLT
Why should I worry?
“Can all your worries add a single moment to your life? And if worry can’t accomplish a little thing like that, what’s the use of worrying over bigger things? “Look at the lilies and how they grow.” Luke 12:26&27 NLT
Dear Father, I want to be lead by your Holy Spirit. Thank you for your grace and mercy. Amen.
“I will thank the Lord because he is just; I will sing praise to the name of the Lord Most High.” Psalms 7:17 NLT