Trust in the Lord
“And my God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:19 (NASB)
I have always read those wonderful stories about the GREAT saints like George Mueller, etc. Mueller prayed when there was no food on the table for his orphans in England, and miraculously bread, milk, donations, etc. would show up. I have read those stories about countless other well-known Christians. But who am I … a pipsqueak pastor from the Midwest who no one knows and who ministers in obscurity. Could I hope for the same? I wonder, and then remember …
The God of the universe is incredibly caught up in each one of His children. Is that not amazing when you think of the grandeur and the expanse of Creation? We can’t even begin to understand it. In a country sky, we apprehend hundreds of thousands of stars twinkling in the vastness of the dark night, but blessedly, the thought may occur, “He’s huge but He is thinking about me.”
“What is man that You take thought of him?” Psalm 8:4 (NASB)
“Blessed be the Lord, who daily bears our burden, The God who is our salvation.” Psalm 68:19 (NASB)
Well, like others, I have been trying in very real ways to help those who are at the bottom of the ladder in life and it is sometimes costly. I remember one night, seeing my resources dwindle and asking God, “Oh Lord, another $____ for ___________,” thinking that just that much would ease their burden. Within two nights, my parents called and my mother offered to send 20 times what was needed. I had not told them anything. I was stunned.
My parents are of that careful, WWII generation who still keep coin purses and 3% interest savings accounts! This was totally God’s stirring of their hearts to share so much, so spontaneously.
The money has come and gone, now, as there have been many needs for it from a number of places including our own needs, but it carried us in ministry for a number of months and I am humbled and grateful to our God who supplies.
“And it shall be that everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” Acts 2:21 (NASB)
There are so many meanings to those words, but God knows our practical needs, as well as our spiritual needs. God will supply if we depend on him.
If today you are struggling and frightened, turn to Him in prayer and tell Him precisely what you are needing; not that He doesn’t know, but He loves your voice and you and wants you to feel that warm, safe feeling of leaning in on Him.
“… your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things.” Matthew 6:32 (NASB)
“… casting all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you.” 1 Peter 5:7 (NASB)
Cast even the silly stuff, the small stuff, the embarrassing stuff – you’d be surprised how the Great Lord of Hosts will come flying to your aid. In case you doubt, remember this scene from Psalm 18:
“In my distress I called upon the Lord, and cried to my God for help; He heard my voice out of His temple, and my cry for help before Him came into His ears.
Then the earth shook and quaked; and the foundations of the mountains were trembling and were shaken, because He was angry. Smoke went up out of His nostrils, and fire from His mouth devoured; Coals were kindled by it. He bowed the heavens also, and came down with thick darkness under His feet. He rode upon a cherub and flew; and He sped upon the wings of the wind. He made darkness His hiding place, His canopy around Him, darkness of waters, thick clouds of the skies.
From the brightness before Him passed His thick clouds, hailstones and coals of fire. The Lord also thundered in the heavens, and the Most High uttered His voice, hailstones and coals of fire. He sent out His arrows, and scattered them, and lightning flashes in abundance, and routed them. Then the channels of water appeared, and the foundations of the world were laid bare at Your rebuke, O Lord, at the blast of the breath of Your nostrils.
He sent from on high, He took me; He drew me out of many waters. He delivered me from my strong enemy, and from those who hated me, for they were too mighty for me. They confronted me in the day of my calamity, But the Lord was my stay. He brought me forth also into a broad place; He rescued me, because He delighted in me.” Psalm 18:6-19 (NASB) Yes, Jesus loves you!
1 Chronicles 4:9-10 9Jabez was more honorable than his brothers. His mother had named him Jabez, saying, “I gave birth to him in pain.” 10Jabez cried out to the God of Israel, “Oh, that you would bless me and enlarge my territory! Let your hand be with me, and keep me from harm so that I will be free from pain.” And God granted his request.
A book on this passage became a best seller. The author aptly describes all the implications of this passage, of which I will try to make a brief summary. Jabez means pain. Imagine having a name like that! A name was often an indication of destiny. Jabez refused to accept the destiny handed to him in his name. Instead of yielding to that definition, he stood as a man more honorable than his brothers. He held himself to a higher standard.
Reaction to difficulty will make or break a person. If you see it as an excuse to justify self and compromise, it will cripple you. If you see it as a reason to strive to an even greater extent, it can be your prodding to a life above the norm. Jabez chose the latter. He asked God to change his destiny. He asked for the blessing of God to be on his life and for his territory to be enlarged. Territory implied the space of his influence. We need to ask God to increase our ministry for the sake of the Kingdom of God. Do you desire to be even more effective?
He recognized the need for God’s hand to be with him. Then he asked for God to break the destiny of his name. He asked for God to keep him from harm so that he would be free of pain. God granted his request.
Consider: Do you feel trapped by expectations others have placed on you, or your environment, or abilities? If you are asking in line with God’s will, He will help you break those boundaries so you can be all God wants you to be.
Marvelous God – Streams in the Desert – July 17
- 202117 Jul
Assyria was marching against Ethiopia, the people of which are described as tall and smooth. And as the armies advance, God makes no effort to arrest them; it seems as though they will be allowed to work their will. He is still watching them from His dwelling place, the sun still shines on them; but before the harvest, the whole of the proud army of Assyria is smitten as easily as when sprigs are cut off by the pruning hook of the husbandman.
Is not this a marvelous conception of God–being still and watching? His stillness is not acquiescence. His silence is not consent. He is only biding His time, and will arise, in the most opportune moment, and when the designs of the wicked seem on the point of success, to overwhelm them with disaster. As we look out on the evil of the world; as we think of the apparent success of wrong-doing; as we wince beneath the oppression of those that hate us, let us remember these marvelous words about God being still and beholding.
There is another side to this. Jesus beheld His disciples toiling at the oars through the stormy night; and watched though unseen, the successive steps of the anguish of Bethany, when Lazarus slowly passed through the stages of mortal sickness, until he succumbed and was borne to the rocky tomb. But He was only waiting the moment when He could interpose most effectually.
Is He still to thee? He is not unobservant; He is beholding all things; He has His finger on thy pulse, keenly sensitive to all its fluctuations. He will come to save thee when the precise moment has arrived.
–Daily Devotional Commentary
Whatever His questions or His reticences, we may be absolutely sure of an unperplexed and undismayed Saviour.
God is with us
By: Charles Spurgeon
‘If God be for us, who can be against us?’ Romans 8:31
Suggested Further Reading: Psalm 118:1–14
God is for us. But, O my brethren, though this brings in the context, it is impossible for any human speech to bring out the depth of the meaning of how God is for us. He was for us before the worlds were made: he was for us, or else he never would have given his Son; he was for us even when he smote the only-begotten, and laid the full weight of his wrath upon him—he was for us, though he was against him; he was for us when we were ruined in the fall—he loved us notwithstanding all; he was for us when we were against him, and with a high hand were bidding him defiance: he was for us, or else he never would have brought us humbly to seek his face. He has been for us in many struggles; we have had to fight through multitudes of difficulties; we have had temptations from without and within—how could we have held on until now if he had not been with us? He is for us, let me say, with all the infinity of his heart, with all the omnipotence of his love; for us with all his boundless wisdom; arrayed in all the attributes which make him God he is for us—eternally and immutably for us; for us when the blue skies shall be rolled up like a worn out vesture; for us throughout eternity. Here, child of God, is matter enough for thought, even though you had ages to meditate upon it: God is for you; and if God be for you, who can be against you?
For meditation: If we are believers and God is for us, we will actually have no end of enemies trying to oppose us, but we will be able to withstand them (Ephesians 6:10–13). However, it is a big ‘IF’; the opposite is true for unbelievers—if this same almighty God is against us (Romans 1:18; 1 Peter 3:12), whoever or whatever may be for us will be of absolutely no assistance whatsoever to us.