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  #211  
Old 04-29-2009, 04:02 AM
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Default Apr. 29

April 29, 2009

Drifting Away

READ: Job 1:13-22

Shall we indeed accept good from God, and shall we not accept adversity? —Job 2:10

Imagine relaxing on a rubber raft along the shore, eyes closed, soaking up the sun and listening to the gentle crash of waves. You don’t have a care in the world—until you open your eyes! Suddenly the shore is alarmingly distant.

We tend to drift like that spiritually. It’s subtle yet shocking when we suddenly realize how far we’ve drifted from God. The point of departure begins when Satan steals our affection for our loving Creator by putting a deceitful twist on our experiences and causing us to suspect God instead of trust Him.

Consider Job and his wife. Both had plenty of reasons to be mad at God. Their children were dead, their fortune lost, and Job’s health destroyed. His wife told him, “Curse God and die!” But Job replied, “Shall we indeed accept good from God, and . . . not accept adversity?” (Job 2:9-10).

There are many attitudes that can set us adrift: believing that we need more than God to be happy; placing meaningful relationships above loyalty to God; thinking God should live up to our expectations; resisting His reproofs; turning a deaf ear when His Word is uncomfortable.

If you’re beginning to drift, remember to stay close to the One who is the sole source of satisfaction. — Joe Stowell

Lord, help me to stay close to You
And trust You more each day,
So when the storms of life appear
I will not drift away. —Sper


To avoid drifting away from God, stay anchored to the Rock.
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  #212  
Old 04-29-2009, 07:19 PM
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Originally Posted by HardCory View Post
April 29, 2009

Drifting Away

READ: Job 1:13-22

Shall we indeed accept good from God, and shall we not accept adversity? —Job 2:10

Imagine relaxing on a rubber raft along the shore, eyes closed, soaking up the sun and listening to the gentle crash of waves. You don’t have a care in the world—until you open your eyes! Suddenly the shore is alarmingly distant.

We tend to drift like that spiritually. It’s subtle yet shocking when we suddenly realize how far we’ve drifted from God. The point of departure begins when Satan steals our affection for our loving Creator by putting a deceitful twist on our experiences and causing us to suspect God instead of trust Him.

Consider Job and his wife. Both had plenty of reasons to be mad at God. Their children were dead, their fortune lost, and Job’s health destroyed. His wife told him, “Curse God and die!” But Job replied, “Shall we indeed accept good from God, and . . . not accept adversity?” (Job 2:9-10).

There are many attitudes that can set us adrift: believing that we need more than God to be happy; placing meaningful relationships above loyalty to God; thinking God should live up to our expectations; resisting His reproofs; turning a deaf ear when His Word is uncomfortable.

If you’re beginning to drift, remember to stay close to the One who is the sole source of satisfaction. — Joe Stowell

Lord, help me to stay close to You
And trust You more each day,
So when the storms of life appear
I will not drift away. —Sper


To avoid drifting away from God, stay anchored to the Rock.

This is awesome. When I start to "drift" I look in my life: the people, the things I do daily, and so on, and I think to myself, "What can I change?" We must remember our purpose for living...and that is to Learn about God, and to ultimately serve God.

One of my favorite passages comes from Matthew:
Jesus said to his disciples, "For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will find it"
--Matthew 16:23

Basically, if we want to have a great life, we must spend it serving our Lord. We must ultimately be "Losers".
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  #213  
Old 04-29-2009, 11:29 PM
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This is awesome. When I start to "drift" I look in my life: the people, the things I do daily, and so on, and I think to myself, "What can I change?" We must remember our purpose for living...and that is to Learn about God, and to ultimately serve God.

One of my favorite passages comes from Matthew:
Jesus said to his disciples, "For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will find it"
--Matthew 16:23

Basically, if we want to have a great life, we must spend it serving our Lord. We must ultimately be "Losers".
Times are rough right now, with the economy, and everything else going on in the world its easy to drift away from God, but its times like these we need to draw closer. They way I always look at it, I haven't gone through anything remotely close to what Job endured, in the end its all a test, and I want to pass it.

I enjoy that verse from Matthew, its crazy I read that chapter earlier today in my daily readings, God must be trying to tell me something w/ that verse.
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  #214  
Old 04-29-2009, 11:50 PM
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Originally Posted by HardCory View Post
Times are rough right now, with the economy, and everything else going on in the world its easy to drift away from God, but its times like these we need to draw closer. They way I always look at it, I haven't gone through anything remotely close to what Job endured, in the end its all a test, and I want to pass it.

I enjoy that verse from Matthew, its crazy I read that chapter earlier today in my daily readings, God must be trying to tell me something w/ that verse.
Yeah, I can not imagine going through what Job had to go through...that is insane. However, I believe we are all tested differently, ya know? I sure hope I pass my test also.

And, the Matthew thing--yeah, that's pretty awesome.
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  #215  
Old 04-30-2009, 03:42 AM
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Default Apr. 30

April 30, 2009

I Will Never Leave You

READ: Deuteronomy 31:1-8

I am with you always, even to the end of the age. —Matthew 28:20

One of my earliest memories of hearing good music was when a male quartet rehearsed at our home. I was about 10 years old, and I was especially attentive to my dad, who sang first tenor. One of the quartet’s favorites was titled, “I Am With You.” Even at that tender age, I not only appreciated the music but I “got the message.”

Those words of Jesus to His disciples just before He ascended—“I am with you always”—became precious to me as the quartet sang, “In the sunlight, in the shadow, I am with you where you go.”

One of the first references to God’s unfailing presence was spoken by Moses in Deuteronomy 31:6-8, when he instructed his successor about leading God’s people into the “land of promise.” And Joshua himself heard the same word from the Lord, “As I was with Moses, so I will be with you. I will not leave you nor forsake you” (Josh. 1:5).

That promise is repeated in the New Testament, where the writer of Hebrews gave this assurance: “He Himself has said, ‘I will never leave you nor forsake you’” (13:5).

Wherever you may be today, you are not alone. If you’ve placed your trust in Jesus for your eternal salvation, you can be certain that He will never leave you. — RBC Ministries

Jesus whispers “I am with you”
In the hour of deepest need;
When the way is dark and lonesome,
“I am with you, I will lead.” —Morris


First make sure you are with Him, then you can be sure He’ll be with you.
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  #216  
Old 05-01-2009, 03:01 AM
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May 1, 2009

The Cheat Test

READ: Psalm 119:129-136

Direct my steps by Your Word, and let no iniquity have dominion over me. —Psalm 119:133

Dan Ariely, an economics professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, conducted some tests on human behavior. In one experiment, the participants took an examination in which they would receive money for each correct answer. The participants didn’t know, however, that Ariely was not testing their knowledge but whether they would cheat. He set up the test so that the groups thought it would be easy to get away with cheating.

Prior to taking the exam, one group was asked to write down as many of the Ten Commandments as they could remember. To Ariely’s astonishment, none from this group cheated! But all the other groups did have those who cheated. Recalling a moral benchmark made the difference.

Centuries ago, the psalmist understood the need for a moral benchmark and asked for divine aid in following it. He prayed to the Lord, “Direct my steps by Your Word, and let no iniquity have dominion over me. . . . Teach me Your statutes” (Ps. 119:133-135).

Ariely’s “cheat test” experiment illustrates our need for moral guidance. The Lord has given us His Word as a lamp for our feet and a light for our path (v.105) to direct us in our moral choices. — Dennis Fisher

How precious is the Book divine
By inspiration given!
Bright as a lamp its doctrines shine,
To guide our souls to heaven. —Fawcett


Like a compass, the Bible always points us in the right direction.
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  #217  
Old 05-02-2009, 04:35 PM
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Default May 2

May 2, 2009

The Work Of Our Hands

READ: Psalm 112

The righteous will be in everlasting remembrance. —Psalm 112:6

One reason we’re left here on earth and not taken to heaven immediately after trusting in Christ for salvation is that God has work for us to do. “Man is immortal,” Augustine said, “until his work is done.”

The time of our death is not determined by anyone or anything here on earth. That decision is made in the councils of heaven. When we have done all that God has in mind for us to do, then and only then will He take us home—and not one second before. As Paul put it, “David, after he had served his own generation by the will of God, fell asleep” (Acts 13:36).

In the meantime, until God takes us home, there’s plenty to do. “I must work the works of Him who sent Me while it is day,” Jesus said. “Night is coming when no one can work” (John 9:4). Night is coming when we will once for all close our eyes on this world, or our Lord will return to take us to be with Him. Each day brings that time a little closer.

As long as we have the light of day, we must work—not to conquer, acquire, accumulate, and retire, but to make visible the invisible Christ by touching people with His love. We can then be confident that our “labor is not in vain in the Lord” (1 Cor. 15:58). — David H. Roper

If you rely upon God’s strength
And live a life that’s true,
Then what you do in Jesus’ name
Will be His work through you. —D. De Haan


In God’s eyes, true greatness is serving others.
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  #218  
Old 05-03-2009, 02:49 AM
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May 3, 2009

Eliana Level

READ: Luke 22:7-20

Do this in remembrance of Me. —Luke 22:19

My wife babysits for our young granddaughter Eliana during the school year while her mom teaches. We do many things to make her feel at home. For example, we put pictures of her and her parents on our refrigerator at “Eliana level.” That way she can see them or carry them around with her during the day. We want her to think of her mom and dad often throughout the day.

Why do this? Is there a chance she would forget them? Of course not. But it is comforting for her to have an ongoing remembrance of them.

Now think about this. Before Jesus was crucified, He created a remembrance of Himself. He told His disciples—and us by extension—to “do this [eat the bread and drink from the cup] in remembrance of Me” (Luke 22:19). Is this because we might forget Jesus? Of course not! How could we forget the One who died for our sins? Yet He started this way of remembrance—the Lord’s Supper—as a comforting reminder of His great sacrifice, His presence, His power, and His promises.

Just as Eliana’s photos remind her of her parents’ love, so the celebration of communion provides a valuable reminder of the One who will come again to take us home.

Partake. And remember. — Dave Branon

But drops of grief can ne’er repay
The debt of love I owe;
Here, Lord, I give myself away—
’Tis all that I can do. —Watts


Those who take their sin seriously remember Christ’s cross gratefully.
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  #219  
Old 05-04-2009, 03:28 AM
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May 4, 2009

Connectors

READ: 1 Thessalonians 1:2-10

From you the word of the Lord has sounded forth, not only in Macedonia and Achaia, but also in every place. —1 Thessalonians 1:8

Marketing professionals have known for years that a product recommendation from a friend is among the most effective means of advertising. That’s why many large companies recruit consumers who receive free samples of their products along with the encouragement to recommend them to family and friends. One major US corporation regularly sends coupons and products to 725,000 selected people called “connectors,” who spread the word to others.

The gospel of Jesus Christ is more than a product. It is God’s great plan for bringing people into a living, vital relationship with Him. But the gospel is conveyed most effectively by example and by word of mouth. Paul commended the Christians at Thessalonica for their exemplary living and their effective witness: “From you the word of the Lord has sounded forth . . . . Your faith toward God has gone out, so that we do not need to say anything” (1 Thess. 1:8). Because their lives had been radically changed (v.9), they found it impossible to keep silent about their faith.

A university professor who trains advertising professionals says, “It’s human nature to talk about things that excite us.” God’s grace is all the incentive we need to recommend our Savior to a friend. — David C. McCasland

I’ll tell the world how Jesus saved me
And how He gave me a life brand new;
And I know that if you trust Him
That all He gave me He’ll give to you. —Fox
© 1963, Fox Music Publications.


If you want others to know what Christ will do for them, tell them what He has done for you.
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  #220  
Old 05-05-2009, 03:27 AM
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May 5, 2009

Still Small Voice

READ: 1 Kings 19:11-18

Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth! —Psalm 46:10

When God spoke to Elijah on Mount Horeb, He could have done so in the wind, earthquake, or fire. But He didn’t. He spoke with a “still small voice” (1 Kings 19:12). God asked, “What are you doing here, Elijah?” (v.13), as he hid from Jezebel who had threatened to kill him.

Elijah’s reply revealed what God already knew—the depth of his fear and discouragement. He said, in effect, “Lord, I have been most zealous when others have forsaken You. What do I get for being the only one standing up for You?” (see v.14).

Was Elijah really the only one serving God? No. God had “seven thousand in Israel . . . whose knees have not bowed to Baal” (v.18).

In the depths of our fear or despair, we too may think we’re the only one serving God. That may happen right after the height of a success, as it did for Elijah. Psalm 46:10 reminds us to “be still, and know” that He is God. The sooner we focus on Him and His power, the quicker we will see relief from our fear and self-pity.

Both the clashing cymbals of our failures and the loud trumpeting of our successes can drown out God’s still small voice. It’s time for us to quiet our hearts to listen for Him as we meditate on His Word. — Albert Lee

Keep listening for the “still small voice”
If you are weary on life’s road;
The Lord will make your heart rejoice
If you will let Him take your load. —Hess


To tune in to God’s voice we must tune out this world’s noise.
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