You Have an Inheritance in God
A few months ago, I woke up with the Lord saying that He was teaching me the “love of the Father.” This was very exciting! I’m now listening, waiting, and looking for ways in which I continue to see His love expressed. Everything the Lord does is out of His love for His sons and daughters.
My dad left us when I was three years old. I grew up the middle child of a single mom doing the best she could. I honor her for seeds planted during Bible study with my sister and me at the kitchen table. Through the people the Lord put in my life, He’s teaching me what He is like as Father. And, like an earthly father, the Lord wants us to “graduate” and walk into the higher learning of His kingdom through our one-on-one relationship with Him. Galatians 4:1-2 shows us that we are “heirs” and that God puts “guardians and stewards” over us so we might grow up in all things into Him (Ephesians 4:15) and become mature believers.
My first pastor taught the Word chapter by chapter, verse by verse, and I learned the foundations of Christianity: Yahweh as the only God, Christ as His only Son, and the only way to eternal life; the Scriptures as the explicit, inerrant Word of God.
Later, the Lord led me to a church where I learned of the infilling of the Holy Spirit, His work in our lives, and the healing of old emotional wounds. Now I am seeking to learn the deeper truths of His Word and kingdom. The more time I spend with Him, intimacy with Father God deepens and a knowledge of His love in a more personal way than ever before. I pray we are all faithful in this pursuit.
As His heir, we have an inheritance and Christ wants us to receive all He died to give us.
Because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying out, “Abba, Father!” Therefore you are … a son, then an heir of God through Christ. (Galatians 4:6-7)
Jesus called His Father “Abba” as did the Apostle Paul. There are many names of God, but I find this one to be personal and endearing. It makes me feel like I can reach out and touch Him. Truly, we all can. Strong’s concordance explains that “Abba” is one of the most sacred names of God. Abba: our master and teacher, our creator who brought each one of us into being, imparting to us His likeness and bestowing on us His benefits as any parent would want to. Doesn’t that make you feel special? This Aramaic term reveals a deep, intimate relationship. This is God’s great desire for us. He cares about everything that concerns us and we can be certain of His faithfulness. Earthly fathers aren’t always faithful, but Abba is.
Even with the best dad the world has to offer, the void in our hearts will not be filled without knowing God’s love. Abba desires to fill every void in our hearts with His love and presence. I love it that His arms are always open wide to enfold us.
Lord, we open our hearts to You today and ask that You keep us hungry, make us teachable so we can grow up in You. Teach us Your love, the love that is like no other. Fill us with Your love that we may love others as You do.
Psalms 1:1-3 1Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers. 2But his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law he meditates day and night. 3He is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither. Whatever he does prospers.
The book of Psalms is a collection of songs of praise. Originally they came in five different books. Many of them were penned by David. In them we find expressed the heart cry of man in nearly every situation. No matter what you are going through you can find a psalm that relates to your situation. I turn to them when I am discouraged, for they often begin with complaint and end in praise.
The first psalm warns us not to keep company with evil people. We are told not to listen to their counsel, stand in their way or sit in their seats. The word ‘blessed’ is translated ‘happy’ in some newer renderings. Blessing implies the goodness of God will be with such a person. Look for these beatitudes throughout Scripture. If the Word gives us instruction as to what to do to find God pouring out His goodness on us, we should give careful attention to that instruction. You will be blessed if you avoid bad company. Man has a natural tendency to gravitate toward mocking and complaint. Don’t!
Instead delight in God’s Word. Think on it day and night. If you will take some time each day to be in the company of the Word, and let Him speak to you, you will have a thought to dwell on that will build you up instead of tearing you down. Avoiding the mocking sinner and filling your mind with God’s instruction will cause you to be blessed.
In typical Hebrew style the psalmist expands on what it means to be blessed in a simile. You will be like a tree that bears fruit planted by a stream. You won’t dry out. You will prosper in everything you do. What a picture! What a promise! If you believe it, then you should act on it. Take time each day to delight in the Word of God. Take a thought with you through the day.
Consider: “If I meditate on God’s Word and don’t walk in the counsel of the wicked, whatever I do will prosper.”
Recognized When He Broke the Bread
Julia Prins Vanderveen, Today Devotions
SCRIPTURE READING — LUKE 24:13-35
Then the two told what had happened on the way, and how Jesus was recognized by them when he broke the bread.
There’s a story about a woman who happened to wander into a church on a Sunday morning. She was an atheist, so she wasn’t quite sure why she decided to sit there in a pew, and then when she was offered communion, for some reason she didn’t turn it down. As she heard the words “Take this bread” and ate the piece of bread, it was as if she received a revelation. From that moment on, she followed Jesus and then started a food bank so that she could help feed others.
This story and our reading in Luke today give glimpses of what’s possible even when people aren’t aware of who Jesus is. When we read the story of the men walking on the road to Emmaus, it’s hard not to wonder why Jesus kept them from recognizing him. He could easily have told them earlier who he was and filled them with joy. Yet God’s ways are not our ways. And then somehow, when Jesus “took bread, gave thanks, broke it and began to give it to them,” their eyes were opened.
Can we accept that we can’t control how or when Jesus reveals himself to us, and that it may not depend on our intellectual ability?
Jesus allowed these followers, on the very day of his resurrection, to recognize him first and foremost in the breaking of bread, permitting them to understand and even to taste the truth of who he really was.
A divided heart
By: Charles Spurgeon
“Their heart is divided; now shall they be found faulty.” Hosea 10:2
Suggested Further Reading: 1 Corinthians 1:4-12
If we would provoke the anger of the Most High and bring down trying providences on the churches, we have nothing to do but to be divided in our hearts and all will be accomplished. If we wish that every vial may empty out its ill, and that every vessel may withhold its oil, we have but to cherish our bickerings till they become animosities; we have but to nurse our animosities till they become hatreds, and all the work will be fully completed. And if this be the case in the church at large, it is peculiarly true in those various sections of it which we now call Apostolic Churches. Oh, my brethren, the smallest church in the world is potent for good when it has but one heart and one soul; when pastor, elders, deacons, and members, are bound together by a threefold cord that cannot be broken. Then are they mighty against every attack. But however great their numbers, however enormous their wealth, however splendid may be the talents with which they are gifted, they are powerless for good the moment they become divided amongst themselves. Union is strength. Blessed is the army of the living God, in that day when it goes forth to battle with one mind, and when its soldiers as with the tramp of one man, in undivided march, go onwards towards the attack. But a curse awaits that church which runs to and fro and which, divided in itself, has lost the main stay of its strength with which it should batter against the enemy. Division cuts our bowstrings, snaps our spears, houghs our horses, and burns our chariots in the fire. We are undone the moment the link of love is snapped. Let this perfect bond be once cut in twain and we fall down, and our strength is departed. By union we live, and by disunion we expire.
For meditation: Believers are not to try to create “unity” with those who preach another gospel, but we are urged to maintain the unity that already exists between true believers (Ephesians 4:3; Philippians 1:27). What would somebody have to report about your church (and your own contribution in it)?