Meditation

03/13/2022

The Lord is my light and my salvation—-whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life of whom shall I be afraid? When evil men advance against me to devour my flesh, when my enemies and my foes attack, me, they will stumble and fall. Though an army besiege me, my heart will not fear; though war beak out against me, even then will I be confident. One thing I ask of the Lord, this is what I seek: 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 seek him in his temple. For in the day of trouble he will keep me safe in his dwelling; he will hide me in the shelter of his tabernacle and set me high upon a rock. Then my head will be exalted above the enemies who surround me; at his tabernacle will I sacrifice with shouts of joy; I will sing and make music to the Lord. Hear my voice when I call, o Lord; be merciful to me and answer me. My heart says of you, ‘Seek his face!’ Your face, Lord, I will seek. Do not hide your face from me, do not turn your servant away in anger; you have been my helper. Do not reject me or forsake me, O God my Savior. Though my father and mother forsake me, the Lord will receive me. Teach me your way, O Lord; lead me in a straight path because of my oppressors. Do not turn me over to the desire of my foes, for false witnesses rise up against me, breathing out violence. I am still confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of he living. Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.” (Psalm 27:1-14)

Fear causes as much distress as actual pain. Even the sufferer need not fear if hope is placed fully in God. Confidence in God’s presence is the basic weapon against fear. We can petition God for mercy and protection because we have full confidence in Him and are willing to learn from Him. Confidence gives us patience to wait for God’s timing and not demand immediate response to our petition

The request is for closeness with God, to live in companionship with His purpose, His will, and His protection. The writer is declaring that to be in fellowship with God is to be exalted in one’s position as a human being, to be protected by a strength beyond human nature, and to be forgiven and drawn close to the spirit and right way of living that God provides. In trouble we tend to fear God’s wrath is upon us, but we turn in faith to our Savior for help, and He responds as promised, for He never forsakes His servants and we can always turn to Him and know He hears our problems.

PRAYER FOR THE DAY:

Precious Abba, today we recognize the blessed gift of a relationship with God through Christ Jesus, that no matter what, we can call out and claim this gift when we are in troubles of any kind and He will listen to us. Many times we think we cannot be forgiven for our failures, our sins, our turning away from Him and yet when we turn to Him, He us always there waiting for us; ready to embrace His creation, to listen to us and shower us with His love and forgiveness, if we will only ask sincerely and humbly for His forgiveness. It in these moments, beloved, when He reaches out to us in love and mercy, to forgive us and restore our relationship with Him once again. Let us take this moment, to pause to not simply read the words of this prayer, but to listen to what they are saying, and as they apply the same way to the Gospel accounts of the Last Supper in a new way. Amen

THOUGHT OF THE DAY:

Do our words and actions make people want to find what we have found?”

KNOWING GOD:

After this the word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision: ‘Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your very great reward.’ But Abram said, ‘O Sovereign Lord, what can you give me since I remain childless and the one who will inherit my estate is Eliezer of Damascus?’ And Abram said, ‘You have given me no children: so a servant in my household will be my heir.’ The the word of the Lord came to him: ‘This man will not be your heir, but a son coming from your own body will be your heir.’ He took him outside and said, ‘Look up at the heavens and count the start—-if indeed you can count them.’ Then he said to him, ‘So shall your offspring be.’ Abram believed the Lord, and he credited it to him as righteousness. He also said to him, ‘ I am the Lord, who brought our out of Ur of the Chaldeans to give you this land to take possession of it.’ But Abram said, ‘O Sovereign Lord, how can I know that I will gain possession of it?’ So the Lord said to him, ‘Bring me a heifer, a goat and a ram, each three years old, along with a dove and a young pigeon.’ Abram brought all these to him, cut them in two and arranged the halves opposite each other; the birds, however, he did not cut in half. Then bird of prey came down on the carcasses, but Abram drove them away. As the sun was setting, Abram fell into a deep sleep, and a think and dreaded darkness came over him. When the sun had set and darkness had fallen, a smoking firepot with a blazing torch appeared and passed between the pieces. On that day the Lord make a covenant with Abram and said, ‘To your descendants I give this land, from the river of Egypt to the great river, the Euphrates—-.” (Genesis 15:1-12, 17-18)

Promise for the future rather than accomplishment in the present is the emphasis of biblical history. God’s promises give His people visions and goals on which to center life upon. Promises concern the basic life needs—-family, the future, land, economic security, peace, death. Promise-centered theology is the foundation for faith-based relationship with God. Biblical history narrates God’s faithfulness and human faith. Abram expressed his deepest concerns to God, resulting in a relationship of faith and prayer is genuine dialogue concerning life’s biggest problems. The more Abram opened himself to God, the deeper their relationship developed, a model that ought to be replicated by all Christians! When Abram sought God to explain His promises, what he got in return was a covenant with God for the land, the property, all of their daily needs for today and into the future, for economic security, peace, and even death.

I AM:

Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. All of us who are mature should take such a view of thins. And if on some point you think differently, that too God will make clear to you. Only let us live up to what we have already attained. Join with others in following my example, brothers, and take note of those who live according to the patter we gave you. For , as I have often told you before and now say again, even with tears, many live as enemies of the cross of Christ. Their destiny is destruction, their god is their stomach, and their glory is in their shame. Their mind is on earthly things. But our citizenship is in heaven. Ad we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be lie his glorious body. Therefore, my brothers, you whom I love and long for, my you and crown, that is how you should stand firm in the Lord, dear friends!” (Philippians 3:17-4:1)

The resurrection from the dead here is that which awaits believers who know Christ and share fellowship in His sufferings in this life. In Greek, the verse is an ‘if” clause reading literally, “If somehow I might attain.” The whole “if” clause is a statement of humility, rather than one of uncertainty. Believers resurrection is as certain as the fact Christ was raised. The only possible uncertainty for believers is whether they will have died y the return of Christ (and thereby participate in the resurrection of the dead) of whether they will be still alive when He comes (and thereby receive transformed bodies in association with being caught up to meet Him. Christian citizenship is in heaven, not on earth. As citizens of God’s kingdom, we must daily conduct our lives by the standards of His kingdom. We serve the true King alone, and we await the final coming of His reign over the world.

2ND THOUGHT OF THE DAY:

At that time some pharisees came to Jesus and said to him, ‘Leave this place and go somewhere else. Herod wants to kill you.’ He replied, ‘God tell that fox, I will drive out demons and heal people today and tomorrow, and on the third day I will reach my goal. In any case, I must keep going today and tomorrow and the next day—-for surely no prophet can die outside Jerusalem! ‘I Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing! Look, your house is left to you desolate. I tell you, you will not see me again until your say, ‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of he Lord.’” (Luke 13:31-35)

Facing death, Jesus maintained control of His destiny. The Pharisees wee aware of Jesus’ danger and the possibility of His death. Jesus had known His peril and His destiny for some time. In this passage he described His sacrificial death in line with the fate of Israel’s prophets. Israel’s religious leaders in Jerusalem caused the death of the prophets and would cause His own. He tenderly lamented over the city He loved and had tried to minister to. Jesus wept over those who were unwilling to let Him gather them under his saving wings. Everything was now in place and Jesus knew what was He was walking straight into, but all of His actions had been written in scripture and was God’s will that He must endure on our behalf.

We are half way into Lent, beloved, and His time left on this earth is getting shorter by the day. His love for us drove Him onward from here, because we would not do this for ourselves and He had to take the way of the cross for our sins. Think about this. Would you do this for someone else? Anyone else?

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