September 7, 2020 – Peace

What is it we’re expecting to happen when Jesus returns?

Kind of a loaded question, I know.

Isaiah 11 is the famous lion and the lamb chapter.  It speaks of Jesus entering into the world and judging the world with righteousness and justice.  Isaiah says that Jesus will take up the cause of the oppressed of the land.

Righteousness will be a belt around his hips; faithfulness will be a belt around his waist.

How will this come to pass?  How will we go from a world that is entirely out of control to a world filled with righteousness?

When Jesus returns, the world will be filled with the knowledge and presence of God.  Isaiah 11 vs. 9 puts it this way:

They will not harm or destroy each other on my entire holy mountain, for the land will  be as full of the knowledge of the Lord as the sea is filled with water.” CSB

Imagine a place where we completely understand and comprehend who God is and what he is all about.  That elusive knowledge that we can only imagine having today when Jesus returns, Jesus will provide us with a complete understanding of God.  

That will be quite a day!

September 6, 2020 – Worry

What I Read Today:

Romans 6; Matthew 6; Isaiah 9-10; Psalm 65; 2 Chronicles 26; Exodus 25

I’m sure that people listening live to Jesus Sermon on the Mount would get a good chuckle out of listening to people in the 21st century complain about worry.  Especially those of us living in the United States.  The things we worry about today would pale in comparison to what people lived with when Jesus lived.

However, worry and anxiety are serious problems today.  Disease, finances, jobs, and family problems can leave a path of destruction in our lives.  

Stress is a silent killer leading to heart disease, high blood pressure, and other problems.

Jesus tells us not to worry.  I know some are having a good chuckle at that.  But if I’m honest, most of the things I’ve allowed myself to worry about have been much ado about nothing.  I’ve let outward circumstances get me so worked up that I ended up not being able to function.  More often than not, the thing I was worrying about passed right on by not leaving a mark.  

We say we trust God.  But we cannot fully trust that God can take our biggest fears and care for them.  We treat our worries like the old paddle ball game.  We hit the ball, but the string keeps pulling them back towards us, allowing us to hit them again.  It works until all of a sudden, we miss the ball, and it falls to the ground.  Instead of letting it go, we pick the ball up and start hitting it once again.

It’s a constant cycle in our lives.

Jesus tells us to cut the cord and let the ball go.  Let God grab ahold of your problem and see how fast your worry and anxiety fall away!

September 5, 2020 – Divorce

What I Read Today:

Romans 5; Matthew 5; Isaiah 7-8; Psalm 64; 2 Chronicles 25; Exodus 24

Divorce is a subject we don’t talk much about today.  Mostly because of guilt.  Divorce has become so prevalent in our society that we simply ignore it.

But it’s not how God intended us to live.

Our society has become so selfish today that we forget the words of Jesus in Matthew 5:31-32:

“It was also said, Whoever divorces his wife must give her a written notice of divorce. But I tell you, everyone who divorces his wife, except in a case of sexual immorality, causes her to commit adultery. And whoever marries a divorced woman commits adultery.” CSB

God intended us to live as a married couple for life.  Man and Woman, caring for one another. That’s the model.  Unfortunately, we’ve become a me-centric society.  Because of that, we fail to understand that the world doesn’t revolve around us. 

We replace our wives for younger women, our husbands with younger men.  Why do we do this?  We do this to fill an inner void inside ourselves with pleasure.  We forget about the price our children pay for our selfishness.  We show our lack of caring about the damage it will do to our spouse.  In the end, our lives are left with regrets.  

Our society can’t heal itself until we return to the fundamental idea that marriage is a lifetime commitment.  

September 4, 2020 – Surviving In Today’s Culture

What I Read Today:

Romans 4; Matthew 4; Isaiah 5-6; Psalm 63; 2 Chronicles 24; Exodus 23

Today two chapters speak a similar message to me.  

In 2 Chronicles 24, we see King Joash early in his kingship.  His trusted advisor is the high priest Jehoida.  Jehoida keeps the young king focused on God.  He screens out the culture around the king so that the king can concentrate on rebuilding the temple and the worship life of his people.

Unfortunately, after Jehoida dies, the king turns to other advisors.  These advisors are not Godly people.  They lead the king into apostasy so evil that he winds up killing a prophet of God Zechariah, the son of Jehoida.

The pull of the world grabbed hold of the King and tore him away from God.  The same draw directed the king towards a world focused on pleasure and power.  In the end, it would become his downfall.

That’s why God told his people in Exodus 23 not to make a treaty with those remaining in the promised land.  It’s why he wanted all trace of their religion and culture removed.  God knew that the culture around us was such a powerful force; it could destroy the faith of almost everyone.  

We live in an anti-god world.  Our world today glamorizes pleasure and violence.  Since it’s impossible to live away from the world, we must fill our minds with God’s things.  We need to make a deliberate time each day to be in God’s Word.  A specific time to spend praying.  We need to fill ourselves with God’s weapons to combat a culture that will continuously be pulling us away from God.  

September 3, 2020 – Resting In God’s Peace

What I Read Today:

Romans 3; Matthew 3; Isaiah 3-4; Psalm 62; 2 Chronicles 23; Exodus 22

With the election coming closer, it seems that politicians on both sides of the aisle are intent on destroying one another.  Sadly, they have amped up their followers to the point where politics is turning into a bloodsport on the streets.

While it’s tempting to become consumed by the hatred we see all around us, Psalm 62 reminds us that God is our source of strength and hope.

Our hope does not come from politicians or who governs us.  Our hope doesn’t come from our job or our relationships.

Our hope comes from the fact that our God has promised you and me that he is walking with us all the way to the finish line of our lives.  Our salvation is secure because of him.  Our life is protected because of him.  No attack of man or Satan will prevent us from seeing our God face to face.  

Remember that today, as you walk through your life!