Often my children remind me just how greatly and simply they understand the principles of the Lord. They are a constant reflection of Christ’s words in Matthew 18:3 – “Unless you become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven”. At 8 & 6 years old, my kids just “get it”.
On the way to church Sunday, my son announced that he was bringing all his money to donate to Jason (an orphan boy the Sunday School classrooms support each year). He’d gathered every dollar in his possession and had his treasure clutched between his tiny fingers, ready to give it all away to a child he’s never met. Instantly, his generous spirit laid bare an overarching principle that I still struggle with well into my 30s. “Ours” is really God’s. He doesn’t need our stuff…but wants to bless our lives through giving. Continue reading
1 Kings 19:11-12 Then He said, “Go out, and stand on the mountain before the Lord.” And behold, the Lord passed by, and a great and strong wind tore into the mountains and broke the rocks in pieces before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind; and after the wind an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake; 12 and after the earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire; and after the fire a still small voice.
1 Samuel 17:8 When Eliab, David’s oldest brother, heard him speaking with the men, he burned with anger at him and asked, “Why have you come down here? And with whom did you leave those few sheep in the wilderness? I know how conceited you are and how wicked your heart is; you came down only to watch the battle.”
One of the most well-known stories in the Bible, the tale of David and Goliath was one of my favorites as a child. To this day I love the trust David displays in the Lord. The unwavering knowledge that since God was with him, nothing could destroy him. He went out to battle ready to face what none other would because he knew firsthand the faithfulness of God. And didn’t doubt Him for a second. What I have never caught before in reading this chapter in 1 Samuel is the reaction of David’s brother. The anger and snide remarks seem to betray loathing for David’s faith in the Lord. Or maybe Eliab’s history with David made him unable to see the mighty call God had on his brother’s life. He took David’s sureness of the Lord’s might as bravado, conceit and wickedness. I wonder how often my familiarity with people in my life taints my view of them. Instead of seeing them as God does, I judge them based on past experiences. Continue reading
James 2:15-17 Suppose a brother or a sister is without clothes and daily food. “If one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.
Yesterday I was taught a valuable lesson about faith in action by my four-year-old. I ran into the grocery store, leaving my kids in the car with my sister – and on my way out noticed a Salvation Army bell-ringer. I haven’t seen one all season…at the malls, grocery stores etc…not a single one. I decided to seize the opportunity to teach my daughter a life lesson about generosity and giving to those less fortunate. Or so I thought. In actuality, God was going to show me something about belief and actions to back it up. Continue reading
2 Corinthians 5:7 For we walk by faith, not by sight.
Thanks again Mom for my “Jesus Calling” devotional. It’s awesome. From today’s reading “If you live your life too safely, you will never know the thrill of seeing Me work through you. — It is so wrong to measure your energy level against the challenges ahead of you. The issue is not your strength, but Mine, which is limitless.”
So often in life, I see obstacles and suddenly, my focus shifts from allowing God to work through me, to figuring out how to conquer the problem myself. I easily forget that regardless of what I see or feel, the Lord has it under control. At no time in the history of the universe has God said “Wow. Didn’t see that coming.”. Continue reading