Saturday, October 6, 2012

A Re-post From Joe Stowell of Our Daily Bread

Drop Your Hands

Our Daily Bread Radio is hosted by Les Lamborn
You’d think I would have my mother’s fingerprints embedded in my knee from all the times she squeezed my leg in church and whispered in no uncertain terms, “Be still.” Like any boy, I had a bad case of the wiggles in places like church. So for years, when I read, “Be still, and know that I am God” (Ps. 46:10), I thought of it in terms of not being antsy.
But the Hebrew word for still means “to cease striving.” It’s the concept of putting your hands down and letting God intervene in your situation without your interference. This word picture is interesting, since we often use our hands to push things out of our way, to protect ourselves, or to strike back. When we drop our hands, it makes us feel defenseless and vulnerable—unless we can trust that “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble” (v.1), and that “the Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge” (v.7). In other words, stop struggling and wait on God to do His work!
In the face of all of life’s circumstances, we can know the peace of trusting the presence and power of God in the midst of trouble as we wait patiently and prayerfully for His deliverance. So drop your hands, for God’s hands are busy on your behalf!
Be still and know that He is God
For pathways steep and rough;
Not what He brings but who He is
Will always be enough. —Anon.
When we put our problems in God’s hands,
He puts His peace in our hearts.

Friday, October 5, 2012

A Re-post From Daqvid C. McCasland of Our Daily Bread

Least Powerful People

Our Daily Bread Radio is hosted by Les Lamborn
An unusual list called The 100 Least Powerful People in the World appeared in the online publication 24/7 Wall St. Among those selected were corporate executives, sports figures, politicians, and celebrities who shared one common characteristic—­they used to be powerful. Some were victims of circumstances, others made poor business decisions, while others lost their influence because of moral failure.
In 1 Corinthians 10, Paul draws a somber lesson from Old Testament history. The people Moses led from slavery in Egypt toward freedom in the Promised Land kept turning their backs on God who had delivered them (vv.1-5). Idolatry, immorality, and grumbling were among the things that brought them down (vv.6-10). Paul points to their collapse as an example to us, and sounds this warning: “Let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall” (v.12).
Every follower of Jesus can stand firm on God’s promise: “He will see to it that every temptation has a way out, so that it will never be impossible for you to bear it” (v.13 Phillips). All of us have power to influence others in their faith. How tragic to squander it by yielding to a temptation that God has empowered us to resist.
Lord, there are temptations to sin everywhere. Help me
not to give in. Make me sensitive to see the ways out
that You provide. I want my love for You to be real and
to encourage others in their faith journey.
The best way to escape temptation is to run to God.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

A Re-post From Cindy Hess Kasper of Our Daily Bread

Timing Is Everything

Our Daily Bread Radio is hosted by Les Lamborn
It was quite a few months before I realized that what I thought was a coincidental meeting had been good timing on my future husband’s part.
From the balcony of the church, he had seen me, deduced which exit I might be using, raced down two flights of stairs, and arrived seconds before I did. As he casually held the door and struck up a conversation, I was oblivious to the fact that his “impromptu” dinner invitation had been premeditated. It was perfect timing.
Perfect timing is rare—at least where humans are concerned. But God has specific purposes and plans for us, and His timing is always perfect.
We see that timing in the life of these Bible characters: Abraham’s servant prayed for a wife for Isaac. God answered his prayer by bringing the young woman to him (Gen. 24). Joseph was sold as a slave, falsely accused, and thrown into prison. But eventually God used him to preserve many people’s lives during a famine (45:5-8; 50:20). And we marvel at Esther’s courage as Mordecai reminded her, “Who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this?” (Est. 4:14).
Are you disappointed in the pace of God’s plans? “Trust in the Lord” (Ps. 37:3). God will open doors when the timing is perfect.
Have faith in God, the sun will shine
Though dark the clouds may be today;
His heart has planned your path and mine,
Have faith in God, have faith alway. —Agnew
God’s timing is perfect—every time!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

A Repost From Julie Ackerman Link of Our Daily Bread

The High Cost Of Living

Our Daily Bread Radio is hosted by Les Lamborn
When I was young, I thought the cost of living in my parents’ home was too high. Looking back, I laugh at how ridiculous it was to complain. My parents never charged me a cent for living at home. The only “cost” was obedience. I simply had to obey rules like clean up after myself, be polite, tell the truth, and go to church. The rules weren’t difficult, but I still had trouble obeying them. My parents didn’t kick me out for my disobedience, however. They just kept reminding me that the rules were to protect me, not harm me, and sometimes they made the rules stricter to protect me from myself.
The cost of living in the Promised Land was the same: obedience. In his final address to the nation, Moses reminded the people that the blessings God wanted to give them depended on their obedience (Deut. 30:16). Earlier he had told them that a good life would be determined by obedience: “Observe and obey . . . that it may go well with you” (12:28).
Some people think the Bible has too many rules. I wish they could see that God’s commands are for our good; they allow us to live in peace with one another. Obedience is simply the “cost” of being part of God’s family on this glorious globe He created and allows us to call home.
Heavenly Father, may we not see obedience as a
burden but as a privilege. Help us to be grateful
for Jesus, who shows us how to live, and for
the Holy Spirit, who empowers us to obey.
The Bible is not a burden but a guide to joy-filled living.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

A Re-post From C. P. Hia of Our Daily Bread

Be Content

Our Daily Bread Radio is hosted by Les Lamborn
Contentment is hard to attain. Even the apostle Paul, a hero of the faith, had to learn to be content (Phil. 4:11). It was not a natural character trait for him.
For Paul to write that he was content in every situation is truly amazing. At the time of this writing, he was in jail in Rome. Charged with sedition, treason, and other serious crimes, he had appealed to the highest court: Caesar himself. Without other legal recourse and friends in high places, he had to wait for his case to be heard. It seems as if Paul had the right to be an impatient and unhappy person. Instead, he wrote to the Philippians to say that he had learned to be content.
How did he learn this? One step at a time until he could be satisfied even in uncomfortable environments. He learned to accept whatever came his way (v.12) and to receive with thanks whatever help fellow Christians could give (vv.14-18). And most important, he recognized that God was supplying all he needed (v.19).
Contentment is not natural for any of us. The competitive spirit in us drives us to compare, to complain, and to covet. Few of us are in a predicament such as Paul’s, but we all face difficulties in which we can learn to trust God and be content.
O Lord, give me the grace to be
Content with what You give to me.
No, more than that, let me rejoice
In all You send, for it’s Your choice! —Anon.
Contentment is not possessing everything but giving thanks for everything you possess.

Monday, October 1, 2012

A Re-post From Bill Crowder of Our Daily Bread

Quaking Aspens

Our Daily Bread Radio is hosted by Les Lamborn
While I was visiting Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, two trees caught my attention. Though the leaves on the surrounding trees were not moving, the leaves of these trees were fluttering with just the slightest hint of a breeze. I pointed them out to my wife, and she told me they were called quaking aspens. I was struck by the visual effect of those shaking leaves. While all the other trees appeared calm and steady, the quaking aspen leaves shook, even with only the faintest breeze.
Sometimes I feel like a quaking aspen. People around me seem to be moving through life without issues or concerns, apparently steady and secure, while even the slightest issue can unsettle my heart. I see others and marvel at their calm and wonder why my own life can so easily be filled with turbulence. Thankfully, the Scriptures remind me that genuine, steadying calm can be found in the presence of God. Paul wrote, “Now may the Lord of peace Himself give you peace always in every way. The Lord be with you all” (2 Thess. 3:16). Not only does God offer peace, He Himself is the Lord of peace.
When we enter the disturbing, unsettling seasons of life, it is good to know that real peace is available in the God of all peace.
Prince of Peace, teach me to find in You the
calming power of Your presence. Strengthen
me today with Your peace, and grant me the
stability I need in this turmoil-filled world. Amen.
Peace is more than the absence of conflict; peace is the presence of God.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

A Re-post From David H. Roper of Our Daily Bread

Initial Point

Our Daily Bread Radio is hosted by Les Lamborn
If you drive south of our home in Boise, Idaho, you’ll see a volcanic butte that rises out of the sagebrush on the east side of the road. This is the initial point from which the state of Idaho was surveyed.
In 1867, four years after Idaho was organized as a territory, Lafayette Cartee, the Surveyor General of the United States, commissioned Peter Bell to survey the new territory. Bell took a sledge and drove a brass post into a little knob on the summit of that butte, declaring it to be the initial point from which he began his survey.
The survey established the language of land description in Idaho: Townships are designated north and south of the initial point; ranges are designated east and west. With such descriptions, you always know exactly where you are.
We may read many books, but the Word of God is our “initial point,” the fixed reference point. John Wesley read widely, but he always referred to himself as “a man of one book.” Nothing can compare to the Book of books, the Word of God. When we allow the Bible to be our guide in all of life, we can say with the psalmist, “How sweet are Your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth!” (Ps. 119:103).
Dear Lord, we are grateful for Your Book. In it
we learn of You and find guidance and direction
for our lives. Help us to learn to love Your Word
and to eagerly dig into its pages. Amen.
The Bible is like a compass: if followed, you’re going in the right direction.

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