From Wilderness to Harvest

Posted July 31st, 2014 by David Miller

Scripture

Psalm 107:35-37

35 He turns a wilderness into pools of water, And dry land into watersprings.

36 There He makes the hungry dwell, That they may establish a city for a dwelling place,

37 And sow fields and plant vineyards, That they may yield a fruitful harvest.

Observation

Psalm 107 speaks about the seasonality of walking with God. It describes the process every believer experiences of going through different phases of life. Some phases, or "seasons", are likened to a time in the wilderness. In these times, life is typified by struggle, trials, and lack. Other seasons are likened to a time of harvest. In these times, life is typified by blessing, abundance, and stability. Throughout these different seasons, God prevails and is in control. Psalm 107 emphasizes the importance of obedience in the midst of this process. When a believer seeks God, and makes Him the center of their life, God's response is to turn seasons of wilderness into seasons of harvest.

Application

If you are in a season of wilderness in your life right now; take heart. God's desire is to redeem your situation and to turn it around. He wants to bring stability, blessing, and abundance to You. While things may be challenging now - they won't be this way forever. Put your trust in God and obey Him in all things, and He will lead you into a new season that is better than where you are right now.

Prayer

Heavenly Father, thank You that You are in control of all things. You are faithful to guide us from season to season in our lives. Father, in the midst of my wilderness, I choose to trust You. I commit to obey You in all things, even if I am surrounded by temptation and pressures to do things the world's way. I know that if I keep my eyes on You, You will be faithful to lead me out of my trials and onto higher ground. Thank You in advance for Your redeeming power in my life. In Jesus Name, Amen!

Power for a Purpose

Posted July 23rd, 2014 by Dave Madden

Scripture

Isaiah 61:1
The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me to bring good news to the afflicted; He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to captives and freedom to prisoners;

Observation

The Spirit of God is upon me because the Lord has empowered me for a purpose. That purpose is to bring good news to the afflicted, bind up the brokenhearted, and proclaim liberty to captives and freedom to prisoners.

Application

Since the Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, I have the power, privilege, and responsibility to minister to the people that are afflicted, brokenhearted, captive and in prison spiritually. God’s power is for a purpose and that purpose is people, especially those hurting and in need.

Prayer

"Father God, thank You that Your Spirit is upon me today. Send me today to the people that You want to set free and use me to minister to them by the power of Your Spirit. In Jesus' name, amen."

Prone to Wander

Posted July 2nd, 2014 by Dave Madden

Scripture

Hosea 1:2
When the LORD began to speak through Hosea, the LORD said to him, "Go, marry a promiscuous woman and have children with her, for like an adulterous wife this land is guilty of unfaithfulness to the LORD."

Observation

God wanted Hosea to feel and experience what He was feeling and experiencing. God loved His people and was faithfully committed them despite the face that His people were continually being unfaithful to Him. God wanted Hosea to experience what it is like to love someone unconditionally even though they continually do not love you back and they break your heart by going after other lovers.

Application

This is obviously a sobering verse and a terrible judgment against God’s people. Similarly to Hosea, when Jesus arrived on the earth in the New Testament He also described mankind as an ‘adulterous generation’. An adulterous person walks away from their commitment to their spouse and goes after other lovers. Anything or anyone that satisfies us and fulfills us more than God has become an idol. It is important that we guard ourselves from any other lovers so as pleasing other people, fame, fortune, or anything else this world offers.

Prayer

Father God, thank You for loving us even when we stray. You are faithful even when we are faithless. Help us to never leave our first love. Help us to never break Your heart by going after other lovers. You created us. You love us. You are so faithful and good to us. We choose to love you back and by Your grace help us to remain faithful to You all of the days of our lives. Amen.

God’s Word is God Inspired

Posted June 27th, 2014 by Mike Cuccia

Scripture

2 Timothy 3 :16-17
All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.

Observation

The bible does not merely contain the Word of God, but that it is the Word of God. The term Paul uses to describe scripture is "inspiration of God" which literally means "God-breathed". This means the entire bible is derived from God Himself.

Application

God's Word is God inspired. His word is alive and active. To the degree that I adhere to His Word, interact with His Word, and believe His Word, is directly proportional to the degree that I will flourish in my life. His Word is life to my entire being.

Prayer

Lord, thank You for the inspired Word you gave to us for correction, reproof and for instruction in righteousness. I pray that I will conform my life to every Word you speak to me. Thank You for placing Your inspired Word in the bible so that I may know it and You as I read it and that I may become mature and prepared for every good work that You have planned for me.


Authority?

Posted June 20th, 2014 by Jeremy Usry

Scripture

1 Timothy 2:1-4

I urge you, first of all, to pray for all people. Ask God to help them; intercede on their behalf, and give thanks for them. 2 Pray this way for kings and all who are in authority so that we can live peaceful and quiet lives marked by godliness and dignity. 3 This is good and pleases God our Savior, 4 who wants everyone to be saved and to understand the truth.

Observation

This passage is very straightforward. Pray for people who are responsible for you. I particularly think it is interesting that the writer of 1 Timothy points out “kings” first. In our day and age that translates to president, one whom is the representative of the people in our land. Notice it did not say pray for the kings if you agree with everything they say and do. Notice it did not say pray for the kings to make the decisions we want them to make. It clearly says, pray this way for those who are in authority like this; ask God to help them and give thanks for them. And when we take on that attitude, God is pleased!

Application

This is an easy application. It is simply pray for those whom God has placed over you. That list includes: our president, our parents, our supervisors, and our pastors. God has given each of these people authority in our lives.

Prayer

King of Kings I thank You for those whom YOU placed in authority over me. I pray for them right now in the Name of Jesus. I pray Your will help them and speak to them. I pray they will honor You in every decision they make. In Jesus Name Amen!

God is Faithful

Posted June 11th, 2014 by David Miller

Scripture

Being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ - Philippians 1:6

Observation

This well-known Scripture is found in the opening part of Paul's letter to the church in Philippi. This was a group of believers near and dear to the Apostle Paul's heart. The book of Acts shows us that Paul invested a significant amount of time in planting this church, and of all of his epistles, it is by far the most thankful and encouraging in tone.

Philippians 1:6 is part of an opening prayer that Paul offers to God in behalf of the Philippians. Just as Paul was the "father" of this church, so this verse reflects God's heart to all of us as a Father.

Application

Our Heavenly Father wants not only to save us from our sins, but He wants to shape us into mature followers of Christ. It is God's desire that we experience dramatic and supernatural transformation as we grow spiritually. God does not want us to remain stuck in the same old sinful patterns and behaviors that used to define us before Christ came into our lives. However, the process of "sanctification", or spiritual growth, is a challenging one.

Philippians 1:6 speaks of God's patience in working with us to become all that He has called us to be. If you are feeling discouraged or downtrodden today, take heart! This passage contains a promise from God - that He will be faithful to continue to lead you into greater and greater levels of breakthrough and maturity.

Prayer

Heavenly Father, we thank You that You never give up on us. Today, we choose to stand on the promise found in Philippians 1:6. Even if we can't see it right now, we thank You that You are always faithful to carry out and complete a "good work" in our hearts. Thank you that our breakthrough and deliverance is coming soon. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

A Guarantee of Protection

Posted May 16th, 2014 by David Miller

Scripture

Psalm 91:14-16

“Because he has set his love upon Me, therefore I will deliver him;
I will set him on high, because he has known My name.
He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him;
I will be with him in trouble;
I will deliver him and honor him.
With long life I will satisfy him,
And show him My salvation.”

Observation

Today's reading is for many believers one of the most-beloved Psalms. Psalm 91 is a prayer of protection, and it describes in vivid detail how we can rely on God in even the darkest of circumstances. Verses 14-16 describe an amazing promise from God to us - if we set our hearts upon Him, He will protect us from danger.

Application

When we feel threatened, our natural instinct is often to try and take control of our own circumstances. Even the most seasoned believer will struggle to place their trust in God when danger surrounds us on all sides. However, our passage for today reminds us of a very important fact. If we can let go of our instincts of self-protection and place our trust in God to deliver us and to take care of us in the midst of our trial, then we make way for God to move in our situation. The result will be divine protection from the Heavenly Father.

Prayer

Heavenly Father, we cry out today for Your protection and deliverance from the danger that surrounds us. We choose to release our fears to You, and make a deliberate decision to trust You with our circumstances. Thank You that Your protection is promised in Your Word, and that no evil can come against me when I am sheltered underneath the shadow of Your wings. In Jesus' Name, amen.

 

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