Remembering God’s Deeds
How often do we consider all the things God does for us? Many times we only talk or think about them when He gives us what we want and life looks good, but what happens when we go through a hard time or when we don’t receive what we ask for in prayer?
Since I gave my life to God, I’ve been on a learning path. I feel how He guides me, consoles me, and yes, sometimes I get scolded too! I can feel His love for me, and I have learned to trust Him.
Most of the years that I have walked with the Lord have been good years, there have been some troubles along the way but nothing major, and so all looked fantastic until four years ago when I learned that my mom had dementia. What I thought would be a slow and lengthy process turned out to be a short and very aggressive one. Once my mom started to show signs of the illness, it took a very short time for her to be bedridden and pass away.
It was the worst time of my life. My mom, my closest friend, my first love, was totally dependent on me… I was not sure that I would know how or even if I would be able to take care of her. Working a full-time job and caring for my mom, I was alone, scared, upset, and very confused; I couldn’t understand why my mom was going through this illness. I had so many questions.
I prayed and pleaded with God to heal her, but nothing was changing. As time passed, I was feeling tired and frustrated. I never stopped praying, reading my Bible, and on the days that I couldn’t pray because I just didn’t have anything left in me, I worshiped with tears streaming down my face.
One morning as I was getting ready to start my day and feeling very bad about myself, I started thinking about the Scripture,
For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing (Romans 7:19 NIV).
Immediately came the answer from God telling me, My grace is sufficient for you. From that moment on I started to learn to let God do what I can’t and just rest and trust that everything will be ok.
I lost my mom a few months ago, but I often think about not only what God did for me while I cared for my mom, but all He has done for me even when I didn’t know Him. I think of all the times He carried me, blessed me, provided for me, loved me and my heart fills with a profound gratitude and a passion to share all the amazing things that God has done for me.
I will consider all your works and meditate on all your mighty deeds (Psalm 77:12).
God Is Our Confidence
By Jessica Van Roekel, cbn.com
“One thing have I asked of the Lord, that I will seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord and to inquire in his temple. For he will hide me in his shelter in the days of trouble; he will conceal me under the cover of his tent; he will lift me high upon a rock” (Psalm 27:4-5 ESV).
At different points in my spiritual journey, I’ve needed to reorient my heart’s confidence in the Lord. Distractions abound and take the form of disappointments and discouragement. I grow weary of trying to work in peace with those who seek to destroy it. Difficult situations stretch on without an end in sight, and I lose sight of God. Friends turn to enemies as they seek to destroy my reputation. It’s in these moments that I reach for the Psalms and remember how God fights for me and fills me with confidence.
The title of Hebrews chapter 11 is called “By Faith” or “The Hall of Faith” and contains many stories of faith in action. Faith is “the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen,” coupled with obedience. Abraham left the land of his ancestors to journey to a new land at the command of God. This journey of his led him into a foreign land filled with unknown enemies. His life serves as a reminder that we are not to look for unending security in this present world but that we are traveling through on our way to God’s city and home for us in heaven.
Yet, the present world is hard, and eternity seems a long way off, so what can we do? By faith, we can believe that God responds to us when we sincerely look to him. He gives us his presence—his very self to us—and his joy becomes interwoven into our lives so that we can face our difficult circumstances with confidence. God’s promises apply to our hearts and can carry us through the hard parts of life.
Through faith, we pursue a deeper relationship with God so that we grow in our desire for his presence, power, and purpose in our lives. Our confidence isn’t in getting what we want in this life but in getting more of God in our lives. He is the reason we can stand in front of our enemies and say, with confidence, “I believe the Lord is with me and because of him I can stand.”
God is our confidence. He is our shield and refuge. In him, we find hope in the face of a hopeless situation. Because of God, we can remain at peace when those around us attack. It is God who hides us when we run toward him instead of away. He is our rock and refuge, an everlasting God who has no beginning and end.
True enduring faith that grows our confidence involves trusting God in every circumstance, even the bone-crushing disappointing ones like an unwanted diagnosis or a friendship gone awry. Confidence grows when we take God at his word and remain loyal to him when things don’t go our way. We can move forward when we choose to make God our refuge and believe that he will lift us up in his way and time.
Love thy neighbour
By: Charles Spurgeon
“Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.” Matthew 19:19
Suggested Further Reading: Romans 12:6-13
Remember that man’s good requires that you should be kind to your fellow creatures. The best way for you to make the world better is to be kind yourself. Are you a preacher? Preach in a surly way, and in a surly tone to your church; a pretty church you will make of it before long! Are you a Sunday-school teacher? Teach your children with a frown on your face; a fine lot they will learn! Are you a master? Do you hold family prayer? Get in a passion with your servants, and say, “Let us pray.” A vast amount of devotion you will develop in such a manner as that. Are you a warder of a gaol, and have prisoners under you? Abuse them and ill-treat them, and then send the chaplain to them. A fine preparation for the reception of the word of God! You have poor around you; you wish to see them elevated, you say. You are always grumbling about the poverty of their dwellings, and the meanness of their tastes. Go and make a great stir at them all—a fine way that would be to improve them! Now, just wash your face of that black frown, and buy a little of the essence of summer somewhere, and put it on your face; and have a smile on your lip, and say, “I love you. I am no cant, but I love you, and as far as I can I will prove my love to you. What can I do for you? Can I help you over a stile? Can I give you any assistance, or speak a kind word to you? Perhaps I could look after your little daughter. Can I fetch the doctor to your wife now she is ill?” All these kind things would be making the world a little better.
For meditation: The effectiveness of what we say and do can depend to a large extent on how we say and do it (1 Corinthians 13:1-3). Faith, virtue, knowledge, temperance, patience and godliness are to be supplemented by brotherly kindness and love (2 Peter 1:5-7).