for we have heard for ourselves… John 4:27-42 I remember the first time I saw “The Omen.” It frightened me to the point of sleeplessness and stagnation. I wouldn’t pick up God’s word and when I did I stayed away from The Book of Revelation. It was silly but I was young and far too easily influenced by external interpretations. When we hear or see other people’s experiences we often want to experience them for ourselves and at some point I realized that I had not fully read Revelation for myself yet I was allowing a movie to affect my understanding. I decided that I needed to read Revelation from beginning to end. When I finished reading, the movie that had frightened me so much lost its power. Thank you God for salvation is truly found in the power of your Word.
1 Corinthians 10:1-13 So if you think you are standing, watch out that you do not fall. No testing has overtaken you that is not common to everyone. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tested beyond your strength, but with the testing he will also provide the way out so that you may be able to endure it.
What does Paul really mean when he says; “…and he will not let you be tested beyond your strength?” I know for myself that I have fallen short and compromised on many things. Apparently, according to Paul I am not alone in my shortcomings. The Israelites continually fell short of God’s purpose, which left them wandering for forty years before they reached the land that God promised. The good news is that by this we know that God is faithful, even when his people on the other hand, fall short. Coming up short in our goals, hopes and dreams is not a measure of our strength but perhaps poor planning. Is it any wonder that we ponder and vacillate many forks in the road of our journey, only to find later that we’ve chosen the longer path? The longer path isn’t necessarily the wrong path it is just longer, and the time we spend on the longer path can sometimes frustrate our sense of achievement. The question we always have to be ready to ask ourselves is whether any frustrating situation (or person) is stronger than our faith in God who promises to provide? For all their complaining, the Israelites as a people always held to who they were as God’s people. However, as time would have it, some were lost because they lost faith, but the Word of God remained with those who continued to believe. Through that same Word (Jesus Christ), we come to have faith. Thus our strength is in our faith in God’s Word, which has endured all testing. The good news for us today is that regardless of its size, no struggle in this journey is beyond our ability to endure. Faith the size of a mustard seed is able to move mountains, seas or gale force winds (Matthew 8:26; 17:20), and to fall is to get to a point where we doubt or have no faith. Paul’s statement assures us that we will endure because faith in God through Christ is to have strength, which gives hope and hope does not disappoint us (Romans 5:1-11).
Tuesday-July 26, 2011
Sometimes we put our faith in the wrong people, not realizing that beyond an earthly standpoint they have no power. Furthermore, when we put our faith in someone who’s motive for helping us is inconsistent with God’s purpose for us, I believe eventually that motive does not prevail. It reads in 2 Samuel 3, Abner a servant in the House of Saul (who has died) is becoming quite strong. In other words politically, he is rising very quickly. The problem is that Abner’s loyalty is in the wrong place and is soon accused by Saul’s son of violating his father’s household. We know that God has already anointed David to be King, here we see that God’s protection of his anointed extends well beyond immediate threats. Abner subsequently defects to David but his character is questioned and it’s too late. First and foremost our faith, hope, and trust has to be in God and he who is faithful will guide other faithful people into our lives who also put God first. Let us remember even Christ who desired the daunting task of feeding the five thousand, first looked up to heaven. Will we encounter other people and events intending to do us harm? Yes. But trusting in God first is our assurance that he has already prepared for that. God has already foreseen the collisions (including the ones we create our selves), and is working it out because through Christ and by the power of the Holy Spirit, we too are his anointed, no longer sheep without a shepherd.
Psalm 62:5,7 For God alone my soul waits in silence, for my hope is from him. On God rests my deliverance and my honor; my mighty rock, my refuge is in God.
2 Samuel 3:6-21; Psalm 62; Acts 16:6-15