Tag Archives: trust

Exodus 15-18; Luke21

The first time I heard this song, What if I gave all by Ray Boltz, likely a new release at the time, it resonated deeply and still does. That penetrating question it asks repeatedly: “What if I gave all?” My daughter just shared with me the song, “Available” by Elevation with a similar message.

Jesus looked up and saw the rich putting their gifts into the offering box, and he saw a poor widow put in two small copper coins.And he said, “Truly, I tell you, this poor widow has put in more than all of them. For they all contributed out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty put in all she had to live on.”

Luke 21:1-4 ESV

My giving to church is often too comfortable. I would likely fall more into the category of the “rich” in this scenario than the poor widow. I live on far more than a dollar a day, and I am tempted to hold too tightly to my time, talents, and treasure. I rarely have to sacrifice a meal let alone my entire bank balance to still give generously to my church and other ministries.

Two convictions weave their way through my thoughts as I read these two passages:

  • I often invest too heavily in temporary treasure
  • I undervalue all that God has done for me

34 “But watch yourselves lest your hearts be weighed down with dissipation and drunkenness and cares of this life, and that day come upon you suddenly like a trap.

Luke 21:34 ESV

I appreciate the clarity the Amplified bible brings to that verse:

“But be on guard, so that your hearts are not weighed down and depressed with the giddiness of debauchery and the nausea of self-indulgence and the worldly worries of life, and then that day [when the Messiah returns] will not come on you suddenly like a trap;

Dissipation is defined as a squandering. The poor widow had nothing to squander. Likely, she was on the alert, looking for the Messiah, definitely not weighed down by earthly possessions. Yet, when God asked her to give all she could have easily replied, “But I have so little already.” Instead she simply said, “Yes.”

The nation of Israel squandered their time post-Egypt. Instead of marveling at how God had preserved them and protected them, they grumbled about not enough water or meat or comfort. After generations of fighting to survive as slaves, they did not know how to shift their thinking and trust God.

“Who is like you, O Lord, among the gods?
    Who is like you, majestic in holiness,
    awesome in glorious deeds, doing wonders?
12 You stretched out your right hand;
    the earth swallowed them.
13 “You have led in your steadfast love the people whom you have redeemed;
    you have guided them by your strength to your holy abode.

Exodus 15:11-13 ESV

They could sing truth, and live a grumbling life. I can do the same. Worship God with outstretched arms on Sunday and worship my own agenda and comfort the rest of the week. What if I gave all? Every day of the week to him? He has saved me from a life of slavery to sin. He has brought me into a life of complete love and forgiveness, and I worry about an increased cost of living. He secured eternal life for me, and I spend my time and energy on temporary trimmings for this life.

What if I gave all?

Lord God, keep trimming away those items that tempt me to look away from you, to find security and comfort in anything aside from you. Continually bring to mind your blessings lest I invest in the wrong things, lest I lose my grateful heart. You are so good. May I hold nothing back as my gratitude overflows in complete trust for your plan. I love you, Lord. Amen.

Erin (6intow)

Advertisement

Leave a comment

Filed under Exodus, Luke, Uncategorized

Genesis 48-49; Luke 15; Psalm 10

Things that are lost become found.

It’s a moving moment, Joseph with his ill father.

11 And Israel said to Joseph, “I never expected to see your face; and behold, God has let me see your offspring also.”

Genesis 48:11, ESV

In Luke, Jesus tells several stories highlighting scenarios of lost being found. The sheep being carried on the shoulders of a man; the woman who searches until a lost coin is found; and the unforgettable story of the prodigal son. Great images of being known and held, a treasure, celebrated.

But what about when all seems lost?

In arrogance the wicked hotly pursue the poor;
    let them be caught in the schemes that they have devised.
For the wicked boasts of the desires of his soul,
    and the one greedy for gain curses and renounces the Lord.
In the pride of his face the wicked does not seek him;
    all his thoughts are, “There is no God.”

Psalm 10:2-4, ESV

The wicked who prospers, lies, sins–who murders, seizes, and ambushes.

Hope is not lost.

Arise, O Lord; O God, lift up your hand;
    forget not the afflicted.
13 Why does the wicked renounce God
    and say in his heart, “You will not call to account”?
14 But you do see, for you note mischief and vexation,
    that you may take it into your hands;
to you the helpless commits himself;
    you have been the helper of the fatherless.
15 Break the arm of the wicked and evildoer;
    call his wickedness to account till you find none.

16 The Lord is king forever and ever;
    the nations perish from his land.
17 O Lord, you hear the desire of the afflicted;
    you will strengthen their heart; you will incline your ear
18 to do justice to the fatherless and the oppressed,
    so that man who is of the earth may strike terror no more.

Psalm 10:12-18, ESV

Lord, you make me resilient. I trust in you.

Courtney (66books365)

Leave a comment

Filed under 5 day reading plan, 66 Books, Bible in a year reading plan

Genesis 17-19; Luke 5; Psalm 3

I want to be strong in the Lord.

Sarah doubted that at her age and stage in life that she could bear a child. And she’d be right, except for the Lord.

13 Then the Lord said to Abraham, “Why did Sarah laugh and say, ‘Will I really have a child, now that I am old?’ 14 Is anything too hard for the Lord? I will return to you at the appointed time next year, and Sarah will have a son.”

Genesis 18:12-14, NIV, emphasis added

I want to run like Lot in the warning and coming destruction, and not look back like his wife did.

23 By the time Lot reached Zoar, the sun had risen over the land. 24 Then the Lord rained down burning sulfur on Sodom and Gomorrah—from the Lord out of the heavens. 25 Thus he overthrew those cities and the entire plain, destroying all those living in the cities—and also the vegetation in the land. 26 But Lot’s wife looked back, and she became a pillar of salt.

Genesis 19:23-26, NIV

I want to trust in the Lord because of what he’s said.

When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.”

Simon answered, “Master, we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything. But because you say so, I will let down the nets.”

When they had done so, they caught such a large number of fish that their nets began to break.

Luke 5:4-6, NIV, emphasis added

Oh to be strong in the Lord, and know that he can do what seems impossible, even through me.

12 While Jesus was in one of the towns, a man came along who was covered with leprosy When he saw Jesus, he fell with his face to the ground and begged him, “Lord, if you are willing, you can make me clean.”

13 Jesus reached out his hand and touched the man. “I am willing,” he said. “Be clean!” And immediately the leprosy left him.

Luke 5:12-13, NIV, emphasis added

When people are watching and failure awaits, I pray that I would be confident in the Lord, like David.

Lord, how many are my foes!
    How many rise up against me!
Many are saying of me,
    “God will not deliver him.”

But you, Lord, are a shield around me,
    my glory, the One who lifts my head high.
I call out to the Lord,
    and he answers me from his holy mountain.

I lie down and sleep;
    I wake again, because the Lord sustains me.
I will not fear though tens of thousands
    assail me on every side.

Psalm 3:1-6, NIV, emphasis added

Lord, I want to be strong and live strong in you. You are the one who equips, who provides, who protects, who sustains. Many other verses come to mind when I think of all that you can do and all that you are. And this gives me confidence as your daughter. Thank you for loving me.

Courtney (66books365)

3 Comments

Filed under 5 day reading plan, 66 Books, Bible in a year reading plan

Gen. 5-8; Luke 2

“After another 40 days, Noah opened the window he had made in the boat and released a raven. The bird flew back and forth until the floodwaters on the earth had dried up. He also released a dove to see if the water had receded and it could find dry ground. But the dove could find no place to land because the water still covered the ground. So it returned to the boat, and Noah held out his hand and drew the dove back inside. After waiting another seven days, Noah released the dove again. This time the dove returned to him in the evening with a fresh olive leaf in its beak. Then Noah knew the floodwaters were almost gone. He waited another seven days and then released the dove again. This time it did not come back. Noah was now 601 years old. On the first day of the new year, ten and a half months after the flood began, the floodwaters had almost dried up from the earth. Noah lifted back the covering of the boat and saw the surface of the ground was drying. Two more months went by, and at last the earth was dry!” Genesis 8:6-14 NLT

Noah had the patience to wait on God’s timing. He didn’t lose hope that the promise would be fulfilled. He seemed to have a calm that God was in control and was protecting his family. Even when the water was gone, God knew it wasn’t safe for them to leave the boat yet. Did 2 more months of waiting make them frustrated and anxious? I can only imagine that I would have been.

“At that time there was a man in Jerusalem named Simeon. He was righteous and devout and was eagerly waiting for the Messiah to come and rescue Israel. The Holy Spirit was upon him and had revealed to him that he would not die until he had seen the Lord’s Messiah.” Luke 2:25&26NLT

“Anna, a prophet, was also there in the Temple. She was the daughter of Phanuel from the tribe of Asher, and she was very old. Her husband died when they had been married only seven years. Then she lived as a widow to the age of eighty-four. She never left the Temple, but stayed there day and night, worshipping God with fasting and prayer. She came along just as Simeon was talking with Mary and Joseph, and she began praising God. She talked about the child to everyone who had been waiting expectantly for God to rescue Jerusalem.” Luke 2:36-38 NLT

Simeon and Anna never lost hope that they would see the Messiah. They saw the promise fulfilled. They must have been overflowing with joy. I want to have a heart posture of surrender. Am I willing to lay down my control to the one who knows what is best for me? Trusting in His promises and plan for my life?

Thank you Father for your faithfulness. I look forward with expectant hope. I desire to be lead by your Holy Spirit. I eagerly await your return. Amen.

Amy(amyctanner)

5 Comments

Filed under 66 Books, Genesis, Luke

Acts 21:1-23:25

Paul was on the move. He was going from place to place, meeting with people. Several times he was warned of danger ahead of him. As he had once been a persecutor, I’m sure he was familiar with what persecution entailed. I can’t imagine … and yet, I can by his words. How his own words stirred up so much anger. I imagine a mob and the surge of harm pushing toward and against him. Guards grabbing at him and carrying him off. None of this was kind or gentle. And later to find that an ambush awaited him … (I wonder what is harder? To know or not know?)

While he is in prison …

The following night the Lord stood near Paul and said, “Take courage! As you have testified about me in Jerusalem, so you must also testify in Rome.”

Acts 23:11, NIV

Take courage.

Immediately I think on what Jesus told the disciples before he left, from John 16:33–how in this world we will have trouble, but to take courage (take heart, be of good cheer, be courageous), because he has overcome the world.

Paul will use the very words that pit him against hatred and speak them as his testimony–the truth.

Lord Jesus, I’m thankful for these words to grasp and tuck in my heart. Help me to take courage and speak truth.

Courtney (66books365)

Leave a comment

Filed under 66 Books, 7-day reading pln, Bible in a year reading plan, Cover to cover