I was studying these two verses this morning and why Paul would tell us to be no more like children. In other words, stop being childish! Anyone with children of their own knows just how childish this can be. An immature Christian is either immature because he is newly saved or is not in the Word.  We need to be in the Word so we can grow – it’s just like that baby needing milk. Withhold milk and that baby will become malnourished. Peter exhorted the newborn babes to grow by getting into the Word.

As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby: I Peter 2:2

That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; Ephesians 4:14

If a believer does not get into the Word, he will be easily deceived by cult members. He will be easily deceived into believing that worldliness is OK. He will fall for every wind of doctrine. He will be easily influenced by what his peers believe. His flesh will lead him rather than his spirit. Jesus knew that the flesh would starve the believer and mislead, but the spirit would feed that believer into growth. It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life. (John 6:63)

If we quench the Holy Spirit by not heeding His conviction when He tries to show us our sin, we feed our flesh. When we do not read the word, we cannot build our faith (our strength) and we cannot grow. So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. (Romans 10:17) We saw this earlier when Peter said to desire the word so we can grow. If we are not growing spiritually, then we are feeding our flesh more than our spirit. We are allowing worldliness into our lives more than we are allowing spiritual things into our lives. For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit. (Romans 8:5)

Is it your parents responsibility to feed you now that you are an adult and not living at home? Of course not! Is it your pastor’s responsibility to feed you spiritual food? Watch out what you answer! If you answer yes, then you are still a babe in Christ. You are still the child mentioned in Ephesians 4:14. It is your responsibility to feed yourself spiritually. Yes, we get fed at church but that should not be the only time you eat! Your Pastor doesn’t come to your house to prepare your meals, does he? Can you imagine if you fed your body only three times a week? Your pastor can only feed you when you are at church – that’s only about six hours a week. Are you starving the other 162 hours in the week?

Feed yourself, ladies, so you can feed your children! You’re not just responsible for their physical health but their spiritual health as well. How important is the Word in our lives? Here are a few reasons:

BETH. Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy word. (Psalm 119:9) The word cleanses me.

Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee. (Psalm 119:11) The word keeps me from sinning.

DALETH. My soul cleaveth unto the dust: quicken thou me according to thy word. (Psalm 119:25) The word makes me alive!

My soul melteth for heaviness: strengthen thou me according unto thy word. (Psalm 119:28) The word strengthens me.

VAU. Let thy mercies come also unto me, O LORD, even thy salvation, according to thy word. (Psalm 119:41) The word shows me mercy.

So shall I have wherewith to answer him that reproacheth me: for I trust in thy word. (Psalm 119:42) The word enables me to have the right words to respond to accusations.

This is my comfort in my affliction: for thy word hath quickened me. (Psalm 119:50) The word comforts me.

TETH. Thou hast dealt well with thy servant, O LORD, according unto thy word. (Psalm 119:65) The word convicts me.

Before I was afflicted I went astray: but now have I kept thy word. (Psalm 119:67) The word keeps me from going astray.

They that fear thee will be glad when they see me; because I have hoped in thy word. (Psalm 119:74) The word gives me hope.

Let, I pray thee, thy merciful kindness be for my comfort, according to thy word unto thy servant. (Psalm 119:76) The word comforts me.

LAMED. For ever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven. (Psalm 119:89) The word is settled – never changing.

I have refrained my feet from every evil way, that I might keep thy word. (Psalm 119:101) The word keeps me from evil.

NUN. Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path. (Psalm 119:105) The word gives me direction in a dark world.

Order my steps in thy word: and let not any iniquity have dominion over me. (Psalm 119:133) The word brings order to my walk.

Thy word is very pure: therefore thy servant loveth it. (Psalm 119:140) The word is pure.

Mine eyes prevent the night watches, that I might meditate in thy word. (Psalm 119:148) The word is to be meditated on.

I beheld the transgressors, and was grieved; because they kept not thy word. (Psalm 119:158) The word burdens my heart for the lost.

Thy word is true from the beginning: and every one of thy righteous judgments endureth for ever. (Psalm 119:160) The word is truth and is everlasting.

I rejoice at thy word, as one that findeth great spoil. (Psalm 119:162) The word is precious!

TAU. Let my cry come near before thee, O LORD: give me understanding according to thy word. (Psalm 119:169) The word gives understanding.

Let my supplication come before thee: deliver me according to thy word. (Psalm 119:170) The word delivers me.

My tongue shall speak of thy word: for all thy commandments are righteousness. (Psalm 119:172) The word is righteous.

There are trials that cause us to shed so many tears, you feel as though there could not possibly be any more to shed. When I was going through one of those trials with my husband’s cancer, I needed to encourage myself by writing. I decided I would look up verses with the word “tears” and see what the Lord gives to me.

I noticed that tears are shed for various reasons – but not one tear goes unnoticed by our Heavenly Father.

Thou tellest my wanderings: put thou my tears into thy bottle: are they not in thy book? (Psalm 56:8)

Turn again, and tell Hezekiah the captain of my people, Thus saith the LORD, the God of David thy father, I have heard thy prayer, I have seen thy tears: behold, I will heal thee: on the third day thou shalt go up unto the house of the LORD. (II Kings 20:5)

Go, and say to Hezekiah, Thus saith the LORD, the God of David thy father, I have heard thy prayer, I have seen thy tears: behold, I will add unto thy days fifteen years. (Isaiah 38:5)

Different types of tears:

When friends (or even family) scorn us: My friends scorn me: but mine eye poureth out tears unto God. (Job 16:20)

When we go through personal trial or turmoil: I am weary with my groaning; all the night make I my bed to swim; I water my couch with my tears. (Psalm 6:6)

When we receive deliverance and direction from God: For thou hast delivered my soul from death, mine eyes from tears, and my feet from falling. (Psalm 116:8)

Tears resulting from spiritual warfare and work: Thus saith the LORD; Refrain thy voice from weeping, and thine eyes from tears: for thy work shall be rewarded, saith the LORD; and they shall come again from the land of the enemy. (Jeremiah 31:16)

When family trials overwhelm us and faith is little: And straightway the father of the child cried out, and said with tears, Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief. (Mark 9:24)

When we receive true repentance: And stood at his feet behind him weeping, and began to wash his feet with tears, and did wipe them with the hairs of her head, and kissed his feet, and anointed them with the ointment. (Luke 7:38)

When we receive correction: And he turned to the woman, and said unto Simon, Seest thou this woman? I entered into thine house, thou gavest me no water for my feet: but she hath washed my feet with tears, and wiped them with the hairs of her head. (Luke 7:44)

When we serve God: Serving the Lord with all humility of mind, and with many tears, and temptations, which befell me by the lying in wait of the Jews: (Acts 20:19)

When the man of God preaches and Exhorts the brethren: Therefore watch, and remember, that by the space of three years I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears. (Acst 20:31)

When we suffer affliction and anguish for others: For out of much affliction and anguish of heart I wrote unto you with many tears; not that ye should be grieved, but that ye might know the love which I have more abundantly unto you. (II Corinthians 2:4)

When we remember the brethren: Greatly desiring to see thee, being mindful of thy tears, that I may be filled with joy; (II Timothy 1:4)

The end of them all: And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. (Revelations 21:4)

God will wipe away every tear! He will swallow up death in victory; and the Lord GOD will wipe away tears from off all faces; and the rebuke of his people shall he take away from off all the earth: for the LORD hath spoken it. (Isaiah 25:8)

We need to remember that the battles we face here on this earth are not ours but God’s. His Word says so:

And all this assembly shall know that the LORD saveth not with sword and spear: for the battle is the LORD’S, and he will give you into our hands. (I Samuel 17:47)

And he said, Hearken ye, all Judah, and ye inhabitants of Jerusalem, and thou king Jehoshaphat, Thus saith the LORD unto you, Be not afraid nor dismayed by reason of this great multitude; for the battle is not yours, but God’s. (II Chronicles 20:15)

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Col 3:16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.

As we approach the Thanksgiving holiday, we turn our thoughts to the abundance of blessings we enjoy here in America. We still have freedom of religion, freedom to move from state to state without policing, freedom of speech (most of the time), etc. We have the freedom to own as many Bibles as we want and to share with others what Christ has done for us.

But what do we do with God’s Word? Do we apply Paul’s exhortation to let God’s Word dwell within us richly in all wisdom? The word “richly” here is defined as “abundantly.” How abundant is God’s Word in your life? You can read the Bible from cover to cover but does God’s Word dwell in you abundantly? Does it produce wisdom? If we were to truly glean from this verse, there would be no arguments amongst Christians because God’s Word would be the same in each heart. Instead, man imposes his own thoughts and opinions into his Bible reading and forms his own words, thoughts and opinions – not those of God.
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~Psalm 25:4-5 Shew me thy ways, O LORD; teach me thy paths. Lead me in thy truth, and teach me: for thou art the God of my salvation; on thee do I wait all the day.

Many have told me to find a good preacher and follow him. This is only good if the preacher is following after God’s Word. How’s one to know?

~2 Timothy 2:15 Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

God’s Word is important and should be a part of our everyday lives. Christ said that those who love Him will keep His sayings. What sayings? The words that He spoke while on earth would be brought to the disciples minds by the Holy Spirit so they could write it down for us to have throughout the years.

~John 14:24-26 He that loveth me not keepeth not my sayings: and the word which ye hear is not mine, but the Father’s which sent me. These things have I spoken unto you, being yet present with you. But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.

~2 Peter 1:21 For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.

Don’t let the words of men deceive you. The Word is Truth and will never deceive you.

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Salvation was the biggest step you will ever take as a human being! Praise the Lord for the Holy Spirit’s conviction on your heart!! (New Testament – Luke 15:10) Likewise, I say unto you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repenteth. Welcome to the family of God! Now, the Bible says that you must grow spiritually. How can you do that?

(1) Read your Bible. Get yourself a King James Bible and start reading the Gospels: Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. Read these books over and over at least 4 times. This is where you will learn about your Saviour, Jesus Christ. Try to read as much as you can each day. After the Gospels, move on to the rest of the New Testament, Psalms and Proverbs (found in the Old Testatement). Put a bookmark on the Table of Contents of your Bible (found at the very beginning) so you can look up the different Books until you learn where they are. Reading every day will be the best thing that you can do for your spiritual walk.

(2 Timothy 2:15) Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

(2) Go to church. Find a good Independent Fundamental Baptist Church (IFB for short) to attend. If there are none in your area, look for a Fundamental Bible Believing Church. Many times they are very much like an IFB church and preach strictly from the Word of God. If you have a job that keeps you from attending church, start praying that God would find you another job that won’t keep you from church. Church is so important because this is where you have an opportunity be with other Christians who can help you, pray for you, and teach you.

(Hebrews 10:25) Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching. (3) Get Baptized. The first thing after salvation that a Christian should do is to be obedient and be baptized. God won’t use you in your Christian walk if you cannot even obey Him with this first point.

(Acts 2:38 ) Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.

(4) Pray. Jesus taught us how to pray:

(New Testament – Matthew 6:9) After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.
Jesus does want you to memorize this prayer and only recite it. He says to pray “after this manner” – meaning to use this as an example of how and what to pray for. Pray to the Father in Heaven and remember that He is holy and His name is holy.
(New Testament – Matthew 6:10) Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.
Remember that God’s kingdom will come soon. Pray for God’s will in your life and in the world (just as His will is done in Heaven.)
(New Testament – Matthew 6:11) Give us this day our daily bread.
Ask the Lord to give you exactly what you need for today – whether it is spritual food from the Bible, needs in your family, needs for your friends, someone’s salvation, someone’s health, etc.
(New Testament – Matthew 6:12) And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.
Forgive those who have hurt you or sinned against you and then ask God to forgive you of the sins which you have committed since the last time you prayed to Him.
(New Testament – Matthew 6:13) And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.
Ask the Lord to protect you from the enemy (Satan) and deliver you from any temptations that will cross your path. For example, if you are tempted to steal, ask God to keep you from this temptation (and remember to stay away from places that tempt you to steal). Also remember that God has all the power in the universe and this is His creation. He deserves all the glory!

Pray in Jesus’ Precious Name – Amen!

(5) Find new friends. If your old friends tend to lead you to sin, then find yourself new friends. Hang out with people who will not lead you to be tempted. Usually this happens automatically because your old friends won’t want to be around you. Remember, you are a new creature – you are born again and, therefore, your new nature won’t enjoy the old sinful things. You will fall under conviction by the Holy Spirit and you will want to change things.

(New Testament – 2 Corinthians 5:17) Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

(6) Tell others about what happened to you!

(New Testament 1 Peter 3:15) But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:

If you want some really good reading material for new Christians, go to Chick Publications – They have some excellent witnessing tracts and you can really grow spiritually by reading their materials.

Please feel free to email me at any time with questions! God bless you on your new journey in Christ!!!

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Psalm 1:1-6: Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful. (1) But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night. (2) And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper. (3) The ungodly are not so: but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away. (4) Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous. (5) For the LORD knoweth the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish. (6)

This is the first complete Psalm I ever memorized. I love how the Book of Psalms immediately starts with a blessing, don’t you? It sets the mood, if you will, for the precious writings we are about to read. Early in my salvation, a Youth Pastor’s wife recommended that I memorize Psalm 1 so I could learn to live a successful Christian life. I have turned to this Psalm many a time and am thankful the Lord put it in His Word. I want to be blessed by God, don’t you?

I never noticed how God grouped the thoughts found in these six verses into groups of threes.

I. The three blessings of the Godly:

(1) Blessed if I don’t walk in counsel of the ungodly – Noah Webster defines the word counsel as:

1. Advice; opinion, or instruction, given upon request or otherwise, for directing the judgment or conduct of another; opinion given upon deliberation or consultation.

I always thought counsel here meant “advice.” However, Noah defines it to include the advice or instruction of the ungodly as well. This opens things up a bit more. This not only includes the unsaved but the backslidden. It’s amazing how the backslidden love to take others with them in their sin so they do not have to sin alone. Therefore, to be blessed of God, you should get all your advice, opinions and instruction (dealing with the Word of God and life choices) by someone who is spiritually mature.

(2) Blessed if I don’t stand in way of sinners – The moment I was born again, I desired to be around other born-again Christians! I did not enjoy being around the ungodly friends of my pre-salvation days. In fact, my spirit picked up on every little ungodly thing they said or did. I no longer enjoyed their company and truly desired to be around Christians so I could talk about the Lord. There is nothing that provides more blessing than to be around believers who love the Lord and talk about Him and glorify Him in their words.

(3) Blessed if I don’t sit in the seat of the scornful – You’ve been around the unsaved who mock God in word and deed so you know exactly what this verse says. They laugh at sin, their life style and curse God. They live in the “here and now” and do not fear death and hell. In fact, how many times have you heard someone say that they would go to hell and join their friends and have a party? The Christian will be blessed if he stays away from these scorners. I know that when I am around a scorner, my spirit is unsettled. The work place always seems to have one or two of these. I am uncomfortable around them and we butt heads because of their mouth. I am not rude to the scorner but I will not allow the scorner to mock my God. Unfortunately today, we are seeing believers becoming pansies in this area. I have personally seen believers keep silent when God is mocked! This reminds me of: I tell you that he will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth? (Luk 18:8 )

Time and time again in my devotionals I have found that life’s blessings come from being in the Word of God. How true verse 2 is! I am blessed because my delight is in the Word! Noah Webster defines the word delight as

A high degree of pleasure, or satisfaction of mind; joy.

Do you receive a high degree of pleasure by being in the Word? If not, it may be because you are not in the Word enough. It’s not necessarily the quantity of words you read but the time you spend chewing and meditating on what you have read. Since I started writing devotionals a year ago, I have gleaned so much more from the Word than I had in my previous 26 years of salvation! I would occasionally get a gold nugget from the Lord in my studies – but now, I get them daily because I’m writing about them.

So David taught us how to be blessed by staying away from certain things in life. The outcome of obeying his counsel in the first two verses lead to three blessings as a result.

(1) I will receive spiritual nourishment – Verse 3 says that I will be like a tree planted by water. The lawn at my house has not received rain in quite a while. We water it but not enough. You don’t see the dry grass and drooping leaves of trees, however, near a brook, do you? The water is ever flowing and that tree thrives because it is thoroughly nourished and continuously nourished. So are we when we heed the counsel of the Word of God. We won’t wonder what to do in certain situations because we have already consulted the Word and we know what God wants us to do.

(2) I will bring forth fruit in its season – My walk and my talk will reflect my Christianity. I will not be a hypocrite but will be living what I believe. Not only will my actions be a testimony to the ungodly but my words should be leading them to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ as well. As I grow in Christ, I will be more fruitful.

(3) I will prosper – I doubt very much this means prospering financially or all Christians would be rich. What I believe this to mean is that my decisions in life will prosper when I seek the counsel of the Godly; when I don’t let the ungodly influence me; when I’m in the Word and know God’s will for my life.

There are three things that happen to the ungodly.

(1) They will be like the chaff – Noah Webster defines the word chaff as:

2. Refuse; worthless matter; especially that which is light, and apt to be driven by the wind. In scripture, false doctrines, fruitless designs, hypocrites and ungodly men are compared to chaff. Psa 1:4; Jer 23:28; Isa 33:11; Mat 3:12.

Whatever the ungodly speaks or does is considered to be worthless. Their words and deeds will not stand the test of eternity in Heaven. They will not prosper – they will miss that great gift of salvation.

(2) They will not stand in the judgment – This reminds me of a court scene when the defendant has to testify. He can lie all he wants but when the jury has finished deliberation, the defendant must stand and face them to receive his verdict. God’s verdict is always just. The ungodly will not be able to stand in his defense because he will see all his sins the way God sees them. It is then he will realize what a goner he truly is. It will be too late. The small amount of joy the ungodly received while living on earth will be replaced with an eternity of torments. What a huge price to pay for a short time of ungodly pleasure.

(3) The way of the ungodly will perish – The Lord is emphatic here. The ungodly will perish! Not only will the ungodly slip into eternity in the lake of fire, his way will perish as well. I was thinking about the “way” spoken of and it reminded me of the snowfalls we had in Northern Maine when I lived up there. We would go walking in our snowshoes to enjoy the beautiful evergreens. We had to be sure that we knew our way because if snow started falling, our trail
would get covered up and we would lose our way back home. The way of the ungodly is the same – the sinner can enjoy his wicked life and think that his way is wonderful. But his trail is no better than that of the trail being covered by snow fall. Christians will live for eternity in Heaven with God and His way will always remain. But the way of the ungodly will perish right along with the ungodly!

What a beautiful way to start the Book of Psalms! David set a pattern that provided wisdom and instruction for the believer! The way of the Godly will lead us to that glorious day when we shall behold the Lord Jesus Christ! We will finally meet Him and be with Him for all eternity. We will get to meet those dear saints we have read about in the Word – those precious martyrs whose accounts are penned in Foxe’s Book of Martyrs – those dear saints we have met on the internet but not face-to-face! What a day that will be – all because we followed the counsel of Psalm 1!

The Happy Crowning Day
Eliza E. Hewitt

There’s an hour which no man knoweth,
Nor the angels round the throne,
When the Lord shall come in glory from the sky;
All the saints shall rise to meet Him,
For He calleth for His own;
They shall hear the trumpet sounding by and by.

Refrain

Are you ready? ready?
Looking for the King?
Ready, while you labor, watch and pray?
Are you ready? ready?
Looking for the King?
Ready for the happy crowning day?

What a blessed transformation,
In the twinkling of an eye,
When the mortal shall immortal life put on!
Those who love Him shall be like Him,
When He cometh from on high,
At the noontide, at the midnight, or at dawn.

Refrain

Though our sins have been as scarlet,
Let us seek the streams that flow
From the cross that rose on Calv’ry’s rugged height;
He is able still to keep us,
And present us white as snow,
When He comes again, as clouds of dazzling light.

Refrain

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What a blessing it was to open the Word this morning! All praise, honor and glory to the King of Kings and Lord of Lords! I initially was heading down a different path with the word “overcometh” but God took me down another instead. How thankful I am for the Word of God which spiritually feeds our hungry souls!

I am struggling through an area in my life which God knows all about. As I strive to overcome this fear, the Lord has taught me that He has overcome all for my benefit! These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world. (Joh 16:33) There is nothing that we need to overcome because Christ has already done it all for us. We simply must trust in Him. Notice how Jesus said that He has spoken to us through the Bible so that we might have peace! There is no peace in worry – there is no peace in the things of this world. However, there is peace knowing that we are born again and that Christ has paid our sin debt. There is nothing we have to do. Also, there is peace knowing that He has been in every situation we have ever been through or will ever experience and He has overcome them. Jesus states that He has overcome the world, my friend. Because we are in Him, we can rest assured that we will overcome because of Him and only Him.

This thought process is what led me into the word search for overcometh. This word does not appear in the Old Testament. Could it be because the Messiah had not yet come and the Jews could not overcome the world in their own flesh? They could not claim this promise yet until Jesus came. Don’t you find it interesting that this word was not even used once in the Old Testament?

There are, however, ten occurrences of the word overcometh in the New Testament. Interestingly enough, the number ten symbolizes “law, government, and restoration“! Oh the joy I have received from God’s numbers in the Bible and seeing how He uses them in His Word! Christ is the only One who has overcome the world (John 16:33). Being saved means that our fellowship has been restored with God the Father – only because we had faith and believed in Jesus Christ’s virgin birth, His shed blood on the cross was payment for our sin, His resurrection and He now sits at the right hand of God the Father. We are promised that we will overcome this world in the end and reign with Him because we are now His. Ten verses in the New Testament speak of overcoming – when we are born again through the Word of God, our fellowship with God is restored and we will reign with Him for all eternity. What a beautiful portrait indeed!

For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith. (1 Jo 5:4)

Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God? (1 Jo 5:5)

He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God. (Rev 2:7)

He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; He that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death. (Rev 2:11)

He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it. (Rev 2:17)

And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations: (Rev 2:26)

He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels. (Rev 3:5)

Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name. (Rev 3:12)

To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne. (Rev 3:21)

He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son. (Rev 21:7)

Although today’s devotional is quite short in my own words, God’s Words are quite powerful and require nothing more be said. I pray you have enjoyed this as much as I have!

Able to Deliver Thee
Fanny Crosby

O troubled heart, be thou not afraid,
In the Lord thy God, let thy hope be stayed;
He will hear thy cry and will give thee aid,
Whate’er thy cross may be.

Refrain

He is able still to deliver thee,
And His own right hand thy defense shall be:
He is able still to deliver thee,
Then be thou not afraid.

O troubled heart, tho’ thy foes unite,
Let thy faith be strong and thy armor bright;
Thou shalt overcome thro’ His pow’r and might,
And more than conqu’ror be.

Refrain

O troubled heart, when thy way is drear,
He will rescue thee and dispel thy fear;
In thy greatest need He is always near,
To Him all glory be.

Refrain

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It is not a coincidence that the Holy Spirit of God would be depicted as a dove. It’s a wonderful picture – gentle in descent – cooing. God’s Spirit gently comes on us – He is not forceful, but “lights” on us. His “cooing” is not a blaring noise or a scream – but a gentle coo – a still small voice, which works in our hearts to woo us to Christ. Thoughts like these bring great comfort to me. They still my troubled spirit and create in me a calmness. We can be in the midst of the most tumultuous storm in our lives but the Spirit brings us comfort, reminding us that God is in control of even the worst of storms. God is not the author of confusion – He does not have to resort to such measures to get our attention. For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints. (1 Cor 14:33) Instead, He has left us with the Holy Spirit to draw us to Him. Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. (Jam 4:8a)

The Holy Spirit is called the Comforter. Oh joy! God’s Word doesn’t coincidentally portray Him as such. God meant to show us that although He is a Judge, He is also our Saviour and our Comforter! As I searched for the word comforter, I discovered that it was conveniently used seven times in the King James Bible! The joys that come from God’s Word when we but only search through it. How blessed we are!

(1) So I returned, and considered all the oppressions that are done under the sun: and behold the tears of such as were oppressed, and they had no comforter; and on the side of their oppressors there was power; but they had no comforter. (Ecc 4:1) Solomon, the wisest except for Christ, said that he observed all those who were oppressed and they had no comforter. We are no longer over powered by the devil and sin. We are no longer over burdened with the load of sin. We have freedom through Christ Jesus! We have the Comforter, given to us at the time of salvation and we are, therefore, sealed unto the day of redemption! And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. (Eph 4:30) The first mention of the word comforter is applied to mankind being separated from God. There is no comfort outside of God, my friend. Only He can provide a comfort which is lasting – nothing else can bring this kind of comfort to the soul. The Hebrew word for comforter here is:

H5162
נחם
nâcham
naw-kham’
A primitive root; properly to sigh, that is, breathe strongly; by implication to be sorry, that is, (in a favorable sense) to pity, console or (reflexively) rue; or (unfavorably) to avenge (oneself): – comfort (self), ease [one’s self], repent (-er, -ing, self).

It is not a coincidence that these definitions describe the Holy Spirit’s ministry. I also thought of the verse where Christ breathed upon His disciples so they could receive the Holy Spirit. And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost: (Joh 20:22) Jesus said and did this right after He told them “Peace be unto you” in the previous verse. The Holy Spirit definitely brings peace to the believer – what a Comforter He is!

(2) Her filthiness is in her skirts; she remembereth not her last end; therefore she came down wonderfully: she had no comforter. O LORD, behold my affliction: for the enemy hath magnified himself. (Lam 1:9) The unsaved do not have this wonderful Comforter as we do. The enemy reigns in their lives and sin rules their bodies. Jeremiah weeped because Zion had defiled the things of God. They did not have the Comforter convicting them of sin as we have Him today.

This is the second appearance of the word comforter. The number two, symbolizing “witness or separation,” is evidenced in why the Comforter was not with Zion. They had defiled the things of God – they were no longer separated and a peculiar people unto God! The heathen could not see anything different about God’s people.

(3) For these things I weep; mine eye, mine eye runneth down with water, because the comforter that should relieve my soul is far from me: my children are desolate, because the enemy prevailed. (Lam 1:16) Our Blessed Comforter relieves our soul from eternal damnation – from an eternity of burning in hell’s fire – from eternal separation from the Saviour! Praise the Lord for the wonderful work of the Holy Spirit who woos us to Christ and brings us to the saving power of the Cross! There is salvation only through God. The number three symbolizes the Godhead. How appropriate that we find this beautiful Triune God in (1 Jo 5:7) For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. The Holy Spirit testifies of Christ, draws us to Him and brings to memory what His Word teaches (John 15:26).

(4) And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; (Joh 14:16) I lost my father in 1993 and I grieved so deeply for him. How I missed his presence and his teasing! When my mother passed away, I felt like an orphan, even though I was almost 50 years old at the time. It is not so with our Heavenly Father! He has left us His Spirit, our Comforter, who promises to abide with us forever! Jesus Himself promised us this! What a glorious promise it is indeed! I am not an orphan at all! I was born into God’s family on April 1st, 1980, and His Comforter was given to me to be with me forever! Oh Glory!! This is the I fourth mention of the Comforter. The number four symbolizes “earth, creation, and world.” Despite the fact that earth shall pass away, our Comforter is with us forever. He will never leave us (Heb. 13:5b) … for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.

(5) But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you. (Joh 14:26) This same Comforter is not only with us forever, but He also is our Teacher! He wrote the Word of God. For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost. (2 Pe 1:21) Who better to interpret the Word to us than the One Who wrote it? We don’t need someone to interpret God’s Word for us. If we are diligently seeking the Lord’s will in our lives through His Word, He will show us what He desires for us. I did not go to church for three months after I was first saved. During those three months, I was very studious and read my Bible at least three hours a day and soaked it in like a sponge. When I heard my first message preached three months later, everything that the preacher said had been taught to me by the Comforter Himself! I definitely was comforted and elated at that very moment. I knew that God had taught me during my readings and He was the one that had taken care of me spiritually so I would not be drawn to false doctrine! What a blessing this was to me! This was my first experience knowing that I was His child and He would care for me!

This fifth (five symbolizing grace, cross, atonement, life) appearance of the Comforter shows us that the Holy Spirit will bring to mind and teach us from His Word all that we need to know regarding Christ and how to live the Christian life. Coincidence? I doubt it! Can this beautiful pattern of God’s numbering be duplicated in any other version than the King James? Nope! Ju
st for the fun of it, I looked up the word in a few other versions and some had more and some had less. God means for us to be blessed by His Words. He means for us to find golden nuggets within the pages of our Kings James Bible, my friend. All we need to do is search them out. Bless His Holy Name!

(6) But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me: (Joh 15:26) Our Comforter is also the One who will reveal Christ to us. He woos us to Christ, He pricks our heart and convicts us of our sin so we see the need of Christ, then He molds us to be like Christ. As He teaches us the truths from the Word, He testifies of Christ and glorifies Him through our yielded lives. What a beautiful portrait! This is the sixth appearance of the word Comforter – six symbolizes man. Man cannot gain entrance to Heaven without Christ. Man is lost and on his way to hell without Christ. How wonderful that God would place the sixth appearance of the Comforter in this light – showing man his need of salvation through the work of the Comforter!

(7) Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you. (Joh 16:7) Our Saviour did not leave us empty handed upon His departure. He left us in good hands. He left us His Spirit to dwell within us. This Comforter was sent to us by the Good Shepherd who knew exactly what we needed to complete our mission here on earth! Bless God! Glory to the Highest! Our comfort is complete because of the work of the Holy Spirit, our Comforter! God’s perfect love for us is shown by leaving His Spirit with us! Perfection, again, in the Trinity is shown here by the seventh use of this blessed word comforter!

Brother Jerry Bouey added these insights – what a blessing!

“First of all, we have the promise of the Comforter. The word ‘Comforter’ is interesting. It is used to translate a Greek word, Parakletos, which is a compound word meaning, one who comes to the side of another, that is a helper in time of need. In the First Epistle of John (chap. 2:1) we have ‘Advocate,’ which is exactly the same word in the original.

There is a sweetness and preciousness about that word ‘Comforter’ that appeals to the heart. After all, we cannot use any other word in our language that would so adequately represent the Greek word, for the Paraklete is in very truth the Comforter. Our English word ‘Comforter’ is also a compound. ‘Comforter’ comes from two Latin words – con, and fortis, the one meaning ‘to be in company with,’ and the other ‘to strengthen,’ so that actually the Comforter is one who strengthens by companionship. That is one of the great ministries of the Holy Spirit. The Paraclete is one who comes to your side to help, to give aid, and so the word is properly used. An attorney-at-law, or an advocate, is one who comes to help you in your legal difficulties, and the Holy Spirit is all this. He has come from heaven, as promised by our blessed Lord, to assist us in every crisis, in every time of difficulty that may arise in our Christian lives – He strengthens by His companionship.” (Quoted from Addresses On The Gospel Of John by H.A. Ironside, pages 622-623)

Jerry’s added comment:

A trace of the root words behind Parakletos gives us this definition: “One who is called alongside.” With these two definitions (ie. Ironside’s and Strong’s) taken together, we arrive at the conclusion that the Comforter is “one who comes alongside to strengthen” – in this case, strengthening from the inside. That is a wonderful picture. A believer can come alongside and strengthen someone else with their words of comfort, but the Holy Spirit does His special work of comfort from the inside, using the Word of God as His means of comforting.

This series has truly proven to be quite a blessing! Never did I imagine that we could glean so many “groupings and numbers” in God’s Word! The joy that I have received is more than I can contain!

The Comforter

I remember that day like it was yesterday.
I realized I was doomed, pretty hopeless I’ll say.
But The Comforter entered and brought me such peace.
I knew I was different, that burden released.

Those tears just kept coming, His Love could it be?
How precious and sacred that time was to me!
He washed me and saved me from sin and despair.
I was heading for hell, it seemed no one cared.

But my Heavenly Father loved a wretch such as me.
That He sent His Dear Son to shed blood on a tree.
He took upon Him all my sin and my shame.
That some day with Him I would be able to reign.

Praise my Wonderful Lord from Whom all Blessings Flow.
How wonderful these words, how they bless my soul.
How wondrous for me is this Act of Great Love.
Provided by my Father from Heaven Above!

Thank you Lord for saving my soul!

Kate Plourde

For the mountains shall depart, and the hills be removed; but my kindness shall not depart from thee, neither shall the covenant of my peace be removed, saith the LORD that hath mercy on thee. (Isa 54:10) Doesn’t this verse absolutely bless your socks off? God’s promises are not temporary like those of man. His promises are forever, my friend. God’s kindness toward us and His covenant of peace with us shall never be removed, even though the mountains and hills disappear! A promise such as this brings peace and rest. No longer does man have to fret or feel alone.

When I was first saved, one of the first passages I read was Matthew 11:28-30. Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. A promise of rest to all. (28) Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. (29) For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light. (30) These verses have been imprinted on my heart and forever on my brain. Many times I have needed encouragement and have been able to encourage myself by reciting them. As I was meditating on what to write next in our series on Numbers of the Bible, these dear friends came to mind – more specifically, the phrase “I will give you (thee) rest.” I wondered if God had given us a “number” for this phrase in His Word. I searched my Bible and discovered that this phrase appears three times! Three is the number for the Godhead, the Trinity! The only true rest which can be found is found in the Lord, God.

(1) The first phrase was found in Exo 33:14, And he said, My presence shall go with thee, and I will give thee rest. God promised rest to Moses and his people for coming out of Egypt. As you know, Egypt is a “type” for the “world.” It is only when we “come out of the world and separate ourselves,” that we find rest. There is no rest for the unsaved. I remember before salvation feeling a void in my life – there was an emptiness that could not be filled. Coming out of Egypt and being born again, I found complete rest in Jesus Christ. It seemed as though a hundred pounds of burden came off my shoulders! When my eyes fell on Matthew 11:28-30, I was in tears because those words applied to me. God’s Word showed me exactly what had happened to me. I came to Christ and He gave me rest. I am overwhelmed each time I think on my salvation day!

(2) Isa 14:3 says, And it shall come to pass in the day that the LORD shall give thee rest from thy sorrow, and from thy fear, and from the hard bondage wherein thou wast made to serve, God’s rest was prophesied by Isaiah and a promise was given to Israel that one day they would receive this rest from all their sorrows, fears and bondage. Salvation begins with the Jewish people. Twice Paul stressed this:

For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. (Rom 1:16)But glory, honour, and peace, to every man that worketh good, to the Jew first, and also to the Gentile: (Rom 2:10)God’s plan included all His creation – Jew or Gentile. The Gentile’s rest comes from the same Source as the Jew’s – the Messiah, Jesus Christ. The old and new covenant were completed in Jesus Christ’s work on the cross.

(3) And finally, Mat 11:28 says, Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. A promise of rest is made in this verse to all that labour and are heavy laden. Jesus’ promise is not just to the Jew. All who come to Him will be given rest.

My friend, the pleasures of this world can promise peace and rest, but they cannot truly do so. The best spa on earth can relax your poor, tired old body but it cannot provide the rest that your spirit needs. The Word says that what is in the heart of man (his spirit) will make its way to the surface (Matt. 12:34) You can be relaxed on the outside but the turmoils and trials of the day are still churning on the inside. Does God remove these turmoils and trials from a Christian’s life? No. But He promises rest to those who come to Him. We have rest and comfort knowing that nothing happens to us by chance. God allows these trials to grow us, to teach us, and to bring glory to His Name.

We also have a rest which cannot be found in any other. We no longer have the burden of sin because Jesus has taken on our sin and we are free from sin (Rom. 6:22). We no longer have the penalty hanging over us. Christ paid our sin debt and the Father sees Christ’s righteousness, not ours. Praise the Lord! For our righteousness is like filthy rags in God’s sight.

There is no true rest for the unsaved. But we, my friend, have a rest promised to us by God Himself. The Triune God has promised complete rest to all who come to Him. God has promised rest three times in His Word. We have the confidence that God does not break His covenant – we are children of the New Covenant through Jesus Christ. Because we are born again, we have a unique relationship with the Father. We are able to come to Him, sit at His feet and turn over all our troubles to Him. It is in Him that we find total solace.

Dear God…
None other can provide such rest
None other is so True
We boldly come because of Christ
To find that rest in You


And he said unto them, Ye are they which justify yourselves before men; but God knoweth your hearts: for that which is highly esteemed among men is abomination in the sight of God. (Luk 16:15) I truly believe that the worse “new teaching” from the world today is the one of self esteem. This teaching is definitely not scriptural and it has done so much damage. It is not a new teaching but it is certainly more prevalent in today’s world than in the past. Everyone is focused on me, myself and I. What’s in it for me? You offended me! You hurt my feelings. You’re no better than I am. Don’t tell Johnny, who’s in the tenth grade that he is only reading at fifth grade level, you’ll ruin his self esteem! No where in God’s Word does it say that we should esteem ourselves! Why do you think people are conceited and full of themselves? They have been “self esteemed” to the point of nausea!

Noah Webster’s definition of the word esteem is SO very different from today’s.

1. To set a value on, whether high or low; to estimate; to value.

Then he forsook God who made him, and lightly esteemed the rock of his salvation. Deu 32.

They that despise me shall be lightly esteemed. 1 Sam 2.

2. To prize; to set a high value on; to regard with reverence, respect or friendship. When our minds are not biased, we always esteem the industrious, the generous, the brave, the virtuous, and the learned.

Will he esteem thy riches? Job 36.

Merriam-Webster’s definition

is the regard in which one is held; especially : high regard

Merriam’s definition is quite diluted, isn’t it?

What things in God’s Word are we to esteem? Neither have I gone back from the commandment of his lips; I have esteemed the words of his mouth more than my necessary food. (Job 23:12) Therefore I esteem all thy precepts concerning all things to be right; and I hate every false way. (Psa 119:128 ) God’s Word should be esteemed. If you were to place the emphasis of Merriam’s definition for esteem to God’s Word, you would not be totally convinced that it deserved such a high rating, right? But if you put Noah’s definition, you see that the Bible is to be prized and reverenced. This is a much different viewpoint! No wonder the worldly Christians do not look to the Word of God to change them. They don’t revere it, therefore, it’s impact on their lives is minimal.

Does God regard esteem as sin? And he said unto them, Ye are they which justify yourselves before men; but God knoweth your hearts: for that which is highly esteemed among men is abomination in the sight of God. (Luk 16:15) (emphasis mine) God considers it an abomination if you esteem that which is ungodly.

Whom should we esteem? Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves. (Phi 2:3) and And to esteem them very highly in love for their work’s sake. And be at peace among yourselves. (1 Th 5:13) We should esteem the brethren better than ourselves and we should esteem those who are over us – our deacons and our Pastors. No where in my 27 years of salvation have I ever read in God’s Word that I should think highly of myself. If I love the brethren, they will always take precedence over me. Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, (1 Cor 13:4) Paul says that our love for each other will cause us to be longsuffering with each other, be kind to each other, not envy one another, and not think highly of ourselves. Be of the same mind one toward another. Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate. Be not wise in your own conceits. (Rom 12:16)

My friend, these are not the Bible verses encouraging us to have self esteem! These verses are encouraging us to be humble, meek and low in pride. What will happen to the one who thinks highly of himself? Cast abroad the rage of thy wrath: and behold every one that is proud, and abase him. (Job 40:11)

Thus saith the Lord GOD; Remove the diadem, and take off the crown: this shall not be the same: exalt him that is low, and abase him that is high. (Eze 21:26)

Now I Nebuchadnezzar praise and extol and honour the King of heaven, all whose works are truth, and his ways judgment: and those that walk in pride he is able to abase. (Dan 4:37)

And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted. (Mat 23:12)

For whosoever exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted. (Luk 14:11)

I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted. (Luk 18:14)

None of these verses sound like words from a support group for self-esteem. Quite the opposite. We should rather be humble and be promoted to the front of the line by the Lord than to think more of ourselves and have Him tell us to get to the back of the line. If anyone had reason for self-esteem, it was the Lord Jesus Christ. But He humbled Himself to the point of dying for you and I. If we are to walk in His footsteps, how can we possibly have self-esteem and say that it comes from God? This is hypocrisy – we should do well to learn from the account of the Pharisee and the Publican.

Dear God…
May our eyes be off ourselves
And focused on others instead
May we be as humble as You were
As You walked the path to your death


Honour thy father and thy mother. Exo 20:12 The Lord has led a few people in my life who struggle in this area of honouring their parents. Each one has a unique situation and trial with their parents. No matter what the trial or circumstance is, however, I noticed that God’s Word did not put any stipulations on His commandment to Honour thy father and thy mother in Ex. 20:12. I wondered why the Lord had allowed these people in my life who had struggles with their parents. I personally did not have these struggles. But my oldest sister certainly did. For years I was the “bridge” between my parents and her. She was not a Christian, but I was. I was placed in a precarious situation as a believer. I could quite understand the abuse she suffered as a child at the hand of my father. I could quite understand her contempt for my mother because she felt my mother allowed it. Yet, both my parents became born again. Both had sought her forgiveness. But because she had never been saved, she did not forgive them. Instead, in her short life, she lost her husband to cancer, she had no children of her own, and she succumbed to cancer in 2001 and died in a hospital room all alone. She alienated herself from the family all those years and finally those final two-three years, she alienated herself from me. The last thing I heard that she said was from her best friend. Her friend told me that my sister hated the fact that I kept witnessing to her and did not believe her to be saved. Entrenched in roman catholicism, she could not see her sin. In her eyes she was a good person. A born-again child of God would be humbled that someone cared enough for their soul to continue witnessing to them.

But this morning, as I sat praying with a dear friend, the Lord revealed to me why I was allowed to be that bridge for my sister. I was allowed the awesome privilege of hearing the harsh truth of what a child goes through when they have been treated badly by their parents. I have seen first hand how the bitterness and contempt ate up my sister to the point she had cancer in her body. I have seen first hand how this bitterness totally enveloped her and ate at her. In my conversations with her, she did not want to hear anything about what she had to do to heal these relationships. All she could think of was what they had to do to heal their relationship with her. Her eyes were focused on self – a very natural thing for a person who is lost. How she hated my parents – she alienated herself from them all in the guise of protecting herself from their manipulations. Her heart and mind were so obsessed, she became consumed with this contempt for them. It came to the point when my brother (who is also saved) and I tried to talk some sense into her, the contempt spilled over to us. So, I am sharing with you what the Lord has laid on my heart. Hopefully those same people He has led to me will be blessed by what God allowed me to go through. I pray I use it to His glory and honour.

Just what does honour mean in this verse? Noah Webster defines it as:

1. To revere; to respect; to treat with deference and submission, and perform relative duties to. Honour thy father and thy mother. Exo 20:12.

It does not say to love them. I found this interesting. Most of us have a natural affection and love for our parents. But what about those children who have been estranged from their parents for one reason or another? How can they honour their parents if they don’t love them? According to Noah Webster, honouring parents means to:

1. Revere them – To regard with fear mingled with respect and affection
2. Respect them – To view or consider with some degree of reverence; to esteem as possessed of real worth
3. Treat with deference – A yielding in opinion; submission of judgment to the opinion or judgment of another. Hence, regard; respect.
4. Submit to them – the act of yielding to power or authority
5. Perform relative duties to – The acts and tasks children do requested of them by their parents.

Naturally, these actions are a result of loving our parents. However, no where does it say that we must love our parents. We are to obey our parents and honour them. These are the only commandments to children I have found. Naturally a child who obeys and honours their parents will love them but a child who has been abused or hurt deeply, it is not natural for them to love at all.

But again, what about the child whose relationship has been damaged or strained with his parents? He can still honour his parents according to Noah Webster, can’t he? He does not have to love them. However, he does have to honour them. If he still lives under their roof, he still needs to obey them. This is what God commands. I found it interesting that a child is never commanded to love his parents.

I believe from the bottom of my heart that a son and daughter who have been hurt deeply by their parents can heal their broken relationships by honouring them the way God intended for them to honour their parents. Taking Noah’s definitions, let’s look at some ways this can be fulfilled by what God has commanded:

1. Revere them – You may not regard your parents with respect and affection but you can regard their “office” with respect and affection. Your Heavenly Father is the ultimate Parent. Revere the office because it is desired of your Heavenly Father. This will please Him. Use His office as the ultimate example and apply it to your parents’ office. The love you have for God should be your driving force in this effort.

2. Respect them – The office of parent is not an easy task. For those of you with children of your own, you can attest to this. For those reasons alone, this should be enough for you to respect their office. Honouring this office is not a choice but a command (according to Ex. 20:12). Parents deserve respect because of the position they hold, not their actions. When one can look beyond the person and the hurts and focus on the “office” it removes the emotion and personal involvement with the people and places it on the office.

3. Treat with deference – There is nothing more common today than children who have a difference of opinion from those of their parents and they strive to prove their point or make their opinions known no matter what the cost. Just because one disagrees with parents does not mean they have the “right” to “speak their minds” and disrespect them. Deference is a yielding in your opinion and submission of judgment to their opinion. It does not mean your opinion changes, it just means that you are not going to argue with your parents because you respect the office they hold. Would you argue with your Pastor? Would you argue with the President of the United States? No! You would respect their office and watch your tongue. You might even keep a few things to yourself for fear of hurting them. That is all part of honouring them. This reminds me of the verse, A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger. (Pro 15:1)

4. Submit to them – As long as a child lives under his parents’ roof, he is under their umbrella of authority. Like an umbrella protects one from the elements, the umbrella of authority keeps the child from being accountable. The parents absorb any bad judgments. God will hold the parents responsible for their abuse – for their unwise decisions on behalf of their children. To the child who doesn’t know any better and his parents do him wrong, God’s hand is on him and will keep him through it. But the moment this child steps out from underneath the umbrella of authority in his life and takes control,
he is subject to the devil’s trials and tribulations. Not only will the child suffer the consequences of the trial but he will suffer the chastisement of God for not honoring and obeying his parents. Submission keeps things in order. We are not commanded to honour only when parents are good parents. We are not commanded to obey our parents only when they are saved or if they are good parents.

5. Perform relative duties to – Because your parents hold that office, it is the child’s duty to help them – to aid them in their time of need. One of the greatest testimonies I know is a friend of mine. His parents never displayed love toward him. After his salvation, he changed dramatically. His brothers were involved in the sodomite lifestyle and his parents accept them openly. But they do not accept my dear friend and his love for the Lord. They despised his stand on sodomy because it affected their other sons. Does this stop my friend from being kind to his parents and honouring them? Absolutely not. He is usually the one who goes to their house and fixes things, paints, etc. They can always count on him to help them. Today they call him if they have a need because he has honoured them – his testimony has ministered to their hearts. Will he ever be able to lead them to the Lord because of his actions? I don’t know. But what I do know is that even though he is in his 40’s, he is still honouring his parents and doing God proud.

So, dear Christian, are you struggling in your relationship with your parents? It’s not what you think or what your parents think. It is what God’s Word says you must do as a child: honour and obey. Do you honour them in the manner defined in Noah Webster’s Dictionary? You don’t have to love them – but you are commanded to honour them. This is the only commandment with a promise attached to it, Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee. (Exo 20:12) God shows it is that important.

Dear God…
Although my parents are not worthy
And their actions toward me are wrong
The Word reveals Your plan for me
Give me grace to always be strong

A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones. (Pro 17:22)

What needs healing in your life today? Do you have a broken spirit? Do you have hurt feelings? Do you have a broken body or chronic illness? Does your marriage need healing? What is it in your life that is in need of fixing? All these areas mentioned need one thing: the Lord, Jesus Christ, in the center of your life. Is He? He should be. When Christ is the center of our thoughts, words and deeds, it is like a good medicine to us. Our spirit is not broken but encouraged and uplifted.

Not all trials are chastisement from God. Let’s assume today the trial you are experiencing is not due to chastisement but it is to ultimately bring glory to God. The Word has given us accounts so that we can encourage ourselves and grow thereby. One could not find a greater account than Job. However, there is also a New Testament account by which we can learn. Paul had a thorn in his flesh and asked God to take it away three times. But the Lord told Paul, And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. (2 Co 12:9) Noah Webster defines the word grace in this verse as:

3. Favorable influence of God; divine influence or the influence of the spirit, in renewing the heart and restraining from sin.

Christ told Paul that God’s favorable, divine influence and influence of the spirit should be enough. God was saying that He would renew Paul’s heart – in essence bring healing to his heart and that would keep him going. Through this trial, God’s strength would be made perfect in Paul’s weakness. People would be able to see the power of God in Paul’s life rather than his infirmity. Is this not what was achieved? Do we not look at Paul’s life as one filled with the power of God?

Because of the promise God gave him, Paul knew that the Lord would always be ready to hear his cry when he struggled with is trial. So that they cause the cry of the poor to come unto him, and he heareth the cry of the afflicted. (Job 34:28 ) Although Paul knew that his thorn would not be removed, he also knew that the Lord would supply exactly what he needed in the healing of his spirit. But unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings; and ye shall go forth, and grow up as calves of the stall. (Mal 4:2) No matter what some may believe, God does not always choose to heal our bodies. There are many accounts in Scripture of people who were sick or afflicted and were used to the glory of God. How many times have we read the account of Moses? The Word says in Ex 4:10-14 that Moses told God that he was slow of tongue and could not speak to his people. God admonished Moses and told him that He created his tongue and nothing is too great for the Creator. But Moses was still doubting at this point – I can almost see a stubborn Moses, can’t you? He had to be because the Word says that God’s anger was kindled against Moses. Would you be angry with your child if they just shared their feeling of inadequacy? No, you’d be moved with compassion and be patient and understanding, wouldn’t you. However, if your child continued acting this way, even after you had assured him that you would take care of everything, his lack of faith would provoke you. I believe that Moses’ lack of faith in God at this point provoked His God. But God, in His infinite mercy, accommodated Moses by placing Aaron in his life. God could have removed Moses’ problem with his tongue, but He didn’t. Could it be that God would not have been glorified by Moses? I’ve often wondered about this. Instead, God allowed Moses to keep this physical problem. Maybe it was to make Moses humble – maybe it was to build Moses’ faith. But the fact of the matter is that God does not choose to heal all of our infirmities. What He does promise is that He will be there to help us as we deal with them.

What do you need in your life today, Christian? Are you at the end of your rope? Has your body failed you? Have relationships failed you? Have you asked God to remove these burdens or to heal you from your physical problems? Has He removed them? If not, is God saying to you what He said to Paul almost 2,000 years ago? Is God telling you that His grace is sufficient for you today? It’s a hard pill to swallow, isn’t it? It’s not what Paul wanted to hear, I’m sure, but the lesson in this verse is how Paul accepted the difficult news. There’s no record of him wallowing in self pity that I’ve ever read. However, he accepted the thorn in his flesh and moved forward in his service for the Lord. Paul’s testimony in this area portrays a selflessness on Paul’s part. Paul did not dwell on God’s “No” answer. He learned to accept that God’s grace was sufficient for him. He learned how to deal with that. What is shown through his testimony is that he was a yielded vessel unto God no matter what God allowed in his life. Are we as yielded as Paul was? Do we accept our trial and rely on God’s grace as sufficient for our daily lives? Or do we dwell on our trials and sick bodies and wallow in self pity? How can God receive glory if we are not yielded vessels unto Him no matter what we are experiencing?

My dear Christian friend, won’t you glean from the Word and accept what God has for you in this life? That’s half the battle! This will produce a merry heart and your merry heart will be like a medicine to you and it will heal you – maybe not physically but definitely spiritually and emotionally.

So maybe God will choose to allow you to continue in sickness or continue in this particular trial. It is for His ultimate glory. He will provide you with the same grace He provided Paul to withstand your trial. Maybe He will choose to heal you totally. Again, it is for His ultimate glory. Either way, you have much to be grateful for – your Creator knows what you need, when you need it and He will provide you with the grace you need.

Dear God…
Help me accept what You have planned
Whether there’s healing or not
To accept that Your grace is sufficient
Being grateful in all of my thoughts
The Baptist Top 1000

Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; (Tit 2:12)

Denying ourselves of ungodly things and worldly lusts is a battle indeed. The first step is to be able to recognize these things in our lives. How can one recognize them if one is knee-deep in the world? I have seen what allowing the world into one’s life can do to a person. I know someone personally who use to live right. Somehow the devil has gotten compromise in this brother’s life and now he is doing things I never dreamed I’d ever see him do. He still goes to church and serves in different ministries. The sad thing is he no longer sees these compromises as sin but as his “right” and “liberty” in Christ! It grieves me to see someone use Christianity as an excuse to do whatever they want. There’s no consideration given to the weaker brother who is watching and may be pushed to sin because of the poor testimony displayed.

You can’t be around a skunk for more than just a few seconds and the smell disgusts you. You also come away feeling like you smell like a skunk, don’t you? However, the longer you’re around the stench, the less you smell it. I grew up in Northern Maine. A few times a year, we would drive to Massachusetts to visit my sister. The route my father used went right through Lincoln, Maine. We always knew when we were getting close because of the awful smell of their paper mill. This town would have been a great stopping point to eat but we never would stop there because we just could not stand the smell! As children, we would block our noses and breathe through our mouths as we went through town, it was that bad. We actually met people who had lived there all their lives and they claimed they couldn’t smell it! It’s the same with worldliness. The longer you are exposed to it and allow it to come into your life, the more it will permeate your life and your ability to discern it will deteriorate.

I find this type of worldly behavior by Christians as immature. They are like toddlers who keep saying, “Mine!” “Give me!” “I want!” “Don’t tell me what to do!” We had an interesting discussion on the Our Final Authority about comparing a human being’s growth from baby to adult to the spiritual life of a Christian. Thank you, Brother Lee, for sharing it with me. It is worth sharing here with you. I hope you are blessed by it.

Spiritual Growth Chart

Babies

Pacifier – Always needing to feel like you are eating but happy with just going through the motions and not really having to swallow anything or digest any truth. For every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe. (Heb 5:13)

Diaper Changes – Making messes uncontrollably that must be cleaned up by other more mature people. Now we exhort you, brethren, warn them that are unruly, comfort the feebleminded, support the weak, be patient toward all men. (1Th 5:14)

Crying for attention – Crying not because of pain or hunger, cold or hot, or any other discomfort but because you want attention. Babies lie to get attention! Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. (Phi 4:11)

Thoughts – They know that they exist and they begin to learn. Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: (Psa 139:23)

Toddlers

Banging Heads – They see what they want and plunge in after it but they never see any danger. The way of the wicked is as darkness: they know not at what they stumble. (Pro 4:19)

Poison – They will put anything in their mouths But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil. (Heb 5:14)

Falls – They will walk right off of the edge or trip over the most obvious hazards. But if a man walk in the night, he stumbleth, because there is no light in him. (Joh 11:10)

Undisciplined – This is the age where discipline must be taught, this is where we learn what no means. He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes. (Pro 13:24)

Learning – Begin to learn the first hard lessons of life usually the hard way. Shew me thy ways, O LORD; teach me thy paths. (Psa 25:4)

Childhood

Newness – Everything is new and must be discovered. This is where the greatest learning takes place. Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. (Rom 6:4)

Recognition – We begin to recognize what causes sickness and pain, joy and pleasure. I will praise thee with uprightness of heart, when I shall have learned thy righteous judgments. (Psa 119:7)

Socialization – We learn to play with others and learn from someone other than our parents. And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you. (Eph 4:32)

Independence – We can feed ourselves and maintain ourselves with only a little help and nudging. We begin to make decisions. I have written unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. I have written unto you, young men, because ye are strong, and the word of God abideth in you, and ye have overcome the wicked one. (1Jo 2:14)

Education – The beginning of a formal education they learn the basics from adults. The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: a good understanding have all they that do his commandments: his praise endureth for ever. (Psa 111:10)

Pre-Teen – Teen

Assertion – We begin to assert ourselves as individuals and demand some control over our lives. Therefore thou shalt keep the commandments of the LORD thy God, to walk in his ways, and to fear him. (Deu 8:6)

Rebellion – We rebel against the authority of others over our life. For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, he hath also rejected thee from being king. (1Sa 15:23)

Individuality – We begin to show our individuality and uniqueness. But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased him. (1Co 12:18 )

Abilities – We now have the ability to do constructive work or to destroy the work of others. If the whole body were an eye, where were the hearing? If the whole were hearing, where were the smelling? (1Co 12:17)

Pride – We gain pride thus reaching the age of accountability. Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall. (Pro 16:18 )

Self centered – The world is there to serve us. Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others. (Phi 2:4)

Knowledge – Begins to become knowledgeable of the deeper things of the World around them. The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction. (Pro 1:7)

Adult

Responsibility – Takes responsibility for his own actions good or bad. He that loveth his brother abideth in the light, and there is none occasion of stumbling in him. (1Jo 2:10)

Wisdom – Understands truth and his own limitations thus reverences the Creator. The hoary head is a crown of glory, if it be found in the way of righteousness. (Pro 16:31)

Service – Works for the benefit of others and not just for self. A
nd the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient, (2Ti 2:24) In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth; (2Ti 2:25) And that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will. (2Ti 2:26)

Sacrifice – Gives of themselves for their family and the ones that they love. I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. (Rom 12:1)

Diligence – Does the routine things and the things that are expected of them. Seest thou a man diligent in his business? he shall stand before kings; he shall not stand before mean men. (Pro 22:29)

Higher Education – They can now gain that higher knowledge of the mysterious things of creation and beyond. Teach me to do thy will; for thou art my God: thy spirit is good; lead me into the land of uprightness. (Psa 143:10)

So, my friend, where are you in the Spiritual Growth Chart? Are you as far away from the stench of worldliness or have you hung around it long enough that the “scent” is all over you? This need not be your story. Paul said you can turn it around by living soberly, righteously, and godly. Get in the Word, Christian. Stop quenching the Holy Spirit of God and allow Him to prick your heart and point out the areas of compromise and worldliness you to need to work on. It’s never too late to turn your life around and be at peace once again. If you were to be totally honest, you cannot say that your worldly life has brought you any true peace. Won’t you turn today and serve the Lord again?

Dear God…
Compromise and worldliness
An awful stench they leave
May Your Holy Spirit cleanse me
While to Your Side I cleave

 The Baptist Top 1000

Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall. (Pro 16:18 ) Injured pride is a tough lesson for the believer. The earlier this lesson is learned, the better it is.

What is the best way to deal with pride? Doing a study on how God views pride should be the first place we start. Noah Webster’s definition helps us to see more clearly:

Inordinate self-esteem; an unreasonable conceit of one’s own superiority in talents, beauty, wealth, accomplishments, rank or elevation in office, which manifests itself in lofty airs, distance, reserve, and often in contempt of others.

I think the picture of the cat viewing himself as a lion is a perfect example, don’t you? When we see ourselves as better than we truly are, we set ourselves up for a huge disappointment.

If you struggle with pride, remember that one day you will be brought down to the level you truly belong, and maybe even lower. Talk no more so exceeding proudly; let not arrogancy come out of your mouth: for the LORD is a God of knowledge, and by him actions are weighed. (1 Sam 2:3) Continuing to be arrogant and prideful will only set you up for defeat. God sees where you truly are, how you think of yourself and He will weigh your actions. When the time comes where you are brought down, your pride will force you to think that you are suffering as a Christian. But God’s Word says, For what glory is it, if, when ye be buffeted for your faults, ye shall take it patiently? but if, when ye do well, and suffer for it, ye take it patiently, this is acceptable with God. (1 Pet 2:20) You’re suffering because of your sinful pride, not because you did something right for the Lord. You must recognize the difference and see God’s chastisement as His way of teaching you to be humble.

It is better to learn to be humble and meek before God has to deal with you and you are brought to shame. When pride cometh, then cometh shame: but with the lowly is wisdom. (Pro 11:2) Get in the Word where the teaching is pure – there are so many verses dealing with pride and humbleness. Recognize that your pride is sin in the eyes of God. An high look, and a proud heart, and the plowing of the wicked, is sin. (Pro 21:4) Confess this sin and ask the Holy Spirit of God to pierce your heart and teach you humbleness and meekness.

That pride isn’t bad enough, but it drives you to greater sin. The Lord says you will stir up trouble and that you are a fool. Prov. 28:25-26, He that is of a proud heart stirreth up strife: but he that putteth his trust in the LORD shall be made fat. (25) He that trusteth in his own heart is a fool: but whoso walketh wisely, he shall be delivered. (26) Is this what you want for your life? The Christian who is striving to grow in Christ produces the fruit of the Spirit. Pride is not listed as a fruit of the Holy Spirit; however meekness is (Gal. 5:22).

It’s always best to learn any lesson early on because the longer you remain in any sin, the harder you will fall. Is it not so with your own children? If they disobey you once, the punishment is minimal. But the more then continue to disobey, the harsher the punishment, right? Can you expect any less from your Heavenly Father? So you ask, “I thought today’s devo was going to be on injured pride? I thought I would learn how to deal with it.” If you look deep within yourself, you will see that your pride was injured because you thought more of yourself than you should have. Dealing with injured pride is learning to be humble.

Dear God…
Place pride far behind me
And I no longer fall
May I reflect Your humbleness
And heed the Spirit’s call

Be ye therefore merciful, as your Father also is merciful. (Luk 6:36) Today’s devotional is a long one, but I ask for your patience as it is not a subject that can be dealt with in just a few words. Most of us think that God refers to those “unlovable” people when we read this verse. We think that it is fulfilling the following: Matt. 25:34-40, Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: (34) For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in: (35) Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me. (36) Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink? (37) When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee? (38 ) Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee? (39) And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me. (40)

But what about those “prickly” people who are closer to you than strangers? What about those hard to love church folks? What about those estranged family members? What about your own flesh and blood family who have wronged you? Do you think God excluded those from these verses? Are we placing restrictions on God’s Word by omitting them from the mercy we should be showing? Is God’s love conditional? For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. (Rom 5:6) But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. (Rom 5:8 ) If God’s love is conditional, we would all be in big trouble, for we have all sinned. Why should our love for those I’ve mentioned be any different? Does God not encourage us throughout the Word to have the same agape love that He has for us? If God took to heart all the bad things we did or said, He would be the first to shun us! Remember the old adage, “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me”? Easier said than done, right? Broken bones heal but words sure do cut to the core of a person’s heart. How does the world react to hurtful words? I remember my old days – get even, that’s the only way. The Lord sure has done a work in my heart since then.

However, why is it that we struggle with this more when it is someone right in our own family? These family members are the ones that need our testimony the most. Strangers don’t see us as we truly are. They don’t see us at home – behind closed doors. Our families see us for what we really are. All the more reason for us to show mercy and compassion to those who are lost or backslidden. Have you been hurt deeply by a family member, my friend? Have you been hurt by a church member? I know I have. Loving those prickly and hard-to-love people is not something we can do in the flesh. We just cannot “make” ourselves love them. But we can love them with God’s love. How? Love is a word of motion. Love takes action on our part. God showed us this action by leaving His throne and dying for our sins. That is the ultimate display of agape love. It was not a “sit back and see what happens” love but an action love – “I will go to them and see what I can do for them” kind of love.

If we want to get strong physically, we exercise and build up our muscles. If you want to be stronger in the agape love area, start working at it by doing something for those you find difficulty loving. Christ Jesus was our example, was He not? Then follow His example. Go out there and do something for those you struggle with. Forgive them in your heart and move on. The devil would love nothing better than for you to hold on to resentment and bitterness toward those who have hurt you. You no longer serve him so why obey him? Serve your Father in Heaven instead and put some action to your work.

Are you too afraid to speak to that person face-to-face? Why not send a card or an email? Start “doing” for them as you would a total stranger. Start from scratch and build your testimony once again. If you need to ask forgiveness, then do so. If they wronged you, forgive them and move forward. Let the healing power of the Holy Spirit heal you. This is not an option in a Christian’s life. We are commanded, my friend, to love as Christ has loved. This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you. (Joh 15:12) Did Christ set limits to His love? Did He only die for certain people? No, He died for all sinners. Therefore, your love for others cannot have conditions. I know this is not an easy thing to hear. But as long as we neglect this great teaching and disobey this commandment, are we not out of the Father’s will?

It is difficult to put into practice this same love of Christ, especially if we have been wronged. Let’s say that you came up with a great idea for the Easter Cantata at church. You present it to the Choir Director and he excitedly receives it, complimenting you on your idea! The next thing you know, the Pastor announces from the pulpit that the Choir Director has come up with a brilliant play for the Cantata and there is no mention of you! Here you are sitting in your pew and you’re beet red and steaming on the inside. How dare the Choir Director steal your idea? After church, folks go up to the Director congratulating him on his idea and he does nothing to indicate that the idea was not his. You feel so betrayed and hurt at this point. You try to figure out whether you should go to the Choir Director directly or tell the Pastor that this was your idea and not the Choir Director’s idea. After all, the Pastor ought to know this.

It’s when we are at this point that we should think of John 15:12 and put it to action. Yes, you’ve been wronged. That is no longer the point. The point now is to learn to deal with what has happened and apply Christ’s example to your own situation. Christ would not retaliate and hurt but would lovingly bring this person to reconciliation. So must you. Remember that Christ died for you while you were yet a sinner, right? He forgave you before you even sinned. Then forgive this person, no matter if they have offended you countless times. Matt. 18:21-22, Then came Peter to him, and said, Lord, how oft shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? till seven times? (21) Jesus saith unto him, I say not unto thee, Until seven times: but, Until seventy times seven. (22) I know it’s difficult, but we’re commanded to forgive. What would you do if Christ did not forgive “some” of your own sins? Christ did not set limits, nor should we. This is agape love, my friend. Once you have forgiven this person in your heart, you are free from the chains of resentment that are binding you. It no longer matters how you feel. What matters is to bring reconciliation.

The next step would be to face your offender. You would be amazed to find the reasoning behind their motives. It does not mean the offense is overlooked – it just means that you learn how to approach that person and discuss the offense with forgiveness already in your heart. That’s the difference. Listen with Christ’s heart rather than your own. Using our example, go to the Choir Director and tell him how happy you were that your idea was selected for the cantata and give the glory to God. Then sit back and listen. He will be sure to “hum and haw” and stumble to find the words to explain. It’s not easy to listen to excuses and place ourselves in their shoes but it is the right thing to do. Maybe
the Choir Director had his own reasons for claiming ownership. Maybe he had certain events going on in his life that caused him to do this. It does not justify that what he did was wrong but it will help you to understand his reasoning. Maybe he was getting back at you for something you did to him that you are unaware of. This is not right but, it will help you to understand. It does not excuse what he did but it helps you to see why he did it. This is where reconciliation begins. You’ve already forgiven him prior to the meeting. Now you are working to restoring the relationship. Look at it this way. Can you imagine how Christ felt? He died for you before you even asked forgiveness! Some never ask for forgiveness yet He died for them too.

It’s hard to understand this kind of love, but we are commanded to love as Christ loves. Now that you are exercising this love and taking that first step of reconciliation, you can move forward in healing the relationship. You can speak your mind without being harsh because you are no longer dealing with forgiveness – you’ve already done this. A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger. (Pro 15:1) The Word of God has all that we need to tackle each task in life. If you speak non-combative words, you are promised that there will be peace in your conversation. We are also taught how to speak and which words to say. Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers. (Eph 4:29) Whatever you say to the Choir Director, let it be to edify him and to minister grace (goodwill and kindness) to him. If you don’t, you are grieving the Holy Spirit in your own life according to God’s Word. And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. (Eph 4:30) The conversation with the Choir Director will not be an easy one. There is no “easy” way to tell someone that they have hurt you because they stole your idea. But there is a nice way to tell them. You can point out a sin but yet say it in such a way that this person knows you love them in the Lord. Your goal is to reconcile this person to God and to restore the relationship between the two of you. (If the person you are struggling with is not a Christian, then your goal is the same – you want to point him to Christ so he can be saved.) Go into your conversations after having prayed for God’s wisdom. God promises to give us wisdom liberally according to James 1:5.

Can you imagine how the Choir Director will respond if you are enter the conversation already with forgiveness? He will not feel defensive because he will see that your motive is not to get even. Your actions will prick his heart and move him to repent. If he does not, you have already forgiven him and the rest is up to him. You no longer have bitterness and resentment but are free to love him as Christ loves you! If the person is not saved, can you imagine how they are going to view your reaction? They will be seeing Christ in action through you. The Gospel is being spoken through action! What a responsibility we have to show this agape love in our lives – this love is one of motion – always moving forward and upward!

As we grow in Christ, we should be viewing the unlovable and prickly people as opportunities to reconcile them to God. What would we have done if Christ had treated us the way we treat those who are unlovable? Are we any different than they? No, but we have the power through Christ to treat the unlovely as He would. What a testimony we can be! What a powerful message we can preach just in our actions alone! What about that brother or parent you’ve been witnessing to for years? Have you had fight after fight trying to point out their sin? Has it brought the two of you closer together or has it brought distance between you? Were you successful in showing them their lost condition? Probably not. Have they hurt you in return? There are some things that you just cannot control, and one of them is their reaction. But what you can control is your reaction. With forgiveness in your heart, you are free to love them the way Christ loves them. Put into practice this agape love and start loving them with action. Do things for them – send a card, make a phone call, bake a cake, make a meal when they are sick – but just do it! Put Christ’s love in motion and love them unconditionally.

Thank You, Lord, for blessing my heart today!

Dear God…
Agape love is what we need
To show the love of Christ
To those who hurt us deeply
Guide us, help us through Your might.

Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them. (Psa 119:165)

I have loved this verse for many years now. The Lord first gave it to me when I was going through some very difficult trials in my life. When God would speak to me through the Pastor’s messages, I did not like what I was hearing. I did not want to follow the guidance the man of God was clearly preaching. What he was preaching was too hard for me and I felt that it was too much to bear. Sometimes we look at our trials as a whole and get discouraged. This is what I did. I would look at the big picture, hear the preaching and think to myself that God didn’t know what He was asking me to do! Was I ever wrong!!

When the Lord gave Psalm 119:165 to me, it was as though He had reached down and hugged this child. He spoke to me through His Word and said that if I love His Word, nothing in it will cause me to fall or stumble. He would not ask me to do anything that would be bad for me. So, I obeyed the Lord through the preaching and did what was asked. The end result was one of great peace. All the fears I had of what might happen, never happened. I feared the unknown and feared what God would have me to do – all for nothing. God’s Word assured me peace if I followed it and it was true!

I pray that you would glean from that testimony and apply it to your own life. I pray that you will see this verse as one that will bring life changing results to you. Let’s look at it and pick it apart this morning. The Greek word for “offend” is

H4383
מכשׁל מכשׁול
mikshôl mikshôl
mik-shole’, mik-shole’
Masculine from H3782; a stumblingblock, literally or figuratively (obstacle, enticement (specifically an idol), scruple): – caused to fall, offence, X [no-] thing offered, ruin, stumbling-block.

Noah Webster also defines the word in the same manner:

6. To disturb, annoy, or cause to fall or stumble. Great peace have they that love thy law, and nothing shall offend them. Psa 119.

What a blessing this is. God’s Word will never bring you harm, my friend. You may hear some hard preaching and refuse to apply it to your life because you feel it is too hard or it will create problems. But God’s Word says otherwise. God’s Word is not offensive. He would never give us something that would cause us to stumble – It only promises peace.

You may be thinking that you already know this. But let me ask you this. Have you heard a message recently where the Pastor says “A Christian should not do _______!” (fill in the blank)? Were you guilty of whatever it was he said you should not do? If you were guilty, did you stop doing it? Or did you shrug it off. If you shrugged it off, you are sinning. And I will give you pastors according to mine heart, which shall feed you with knowledge and understanding. (Jer 3:15) God’s man has been given to your church to feed you from the Word so you can grow in knowledge and understanding, my friend. The Holy Spirit cannot do a work in you if you are not going to respond to the message God has laid on his heart. Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you. (Heb 13:17) When your Pastor brings your name up before God, is he able to do so with joy or with grief? If it is with grief, the Word says it is unprofitable to you.

You only get your feathers ruffled when it is a sin you don’t want to give up. Right? Applying the Word’s teachings is not always easy but it brings peace. It is much easier to give up the sin and do what is right than to hold on to it. There is no peace in that. If you struggle with smoking cigarettes and you hear a message against it, does it not stir you up spiritually? What do you do with that? If you ignore it, you cannot honestly say you are at peace with that decision. Chances are you hide the cigarettes when the Pastor comes to visit. Or you are looking over your shoulder to make sure no one from church has seen you with a carton of cigarettes in your shopping cart. You heard the Bible verses the Pastor used to encourage you to quit smoking but you ignore him. You’re actually ignoring the Lord. This sin is not too great for you to give up, my friend. God promises that there is peace awaiting you.

Everyone has an area in their lives where they struggle. Why do we think that ours is unique and is just too great to give up? It’s because we are not in the Word of God the way we should be. Don’t be angry with the Preacher for preaching God’s Word. If you are, Psalm 119:165 cannot be a verse you can claim. Instead, submit to the preaching and allow the Holy Spirit to do a work in you. There is nothing that you are experiencing right now that you cannot overcome, my friend. There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it. (1 Cor 10:13)

God promises peace and He gives peace. The only thing we have to do to obtain that peace is to be in His Word. How hard is that? D.L. Moody once said, “The Bible will keep you from sin, or sin will keep you from the Bible.” If things are going wrong and you are overwhelmed, look at your Bible life. If you are on the verge of a marital break up, look at your Bible life. If you are struggling with gambling, look at your Bible life. Every part of our lives stems directly from the time we spend in the Bible and our obedience to its teachings. This is what separates the men from the boys. I constantly meet people who live defeated Christian lives. There is always something wrong and they seem to have one problem after another. Being around them is exhausting because they are negative and constantly complain. When they ask me what to do, I immediately ask them if they are in the Word every day. Every single response reflected little or no time had been spent in the Word! Can you believe that? And they wonder why they are going through these trials and feel overwhelmed? There is no peace there and it is evident why. I also have met Christians who are going through tremendous trials but you would never know it. Why? Because these Christians are in the Word, applying it to their lives and gleaning God’s peace.

Why struggle when you can have that sweet peace that only God can give His children? He waits to give it to you. Why ignore Him? Spending time in the Word and yielding yourself to it produces that peace. These negative people seem to enjoy living this way – constantly defeated. Do you actually enjoy the unrest in your spirit? Do you actually want to continue to live with such a dark cloud over you? Maybe you are the kind of person who loves the attention you get because of it. Believe me, the only attention you are getting is from people who are in the same situation as you are. You are like a person who is drowning – you are looking to others who cannot swim to help you. Instead, you should be looking to others who can provide you with a life preserver!

You can turn yourself around, you know. Sure it will mean setting aside time to read the Bible and study it. Sure it will mean that you will have to apply what you learn and give up those sins that God places on your heart. Sure it will take an effort on your part, but wouldn’t it be worth it? If you’re miserable, Christian, it’s because you choose to be miserable. The sad thing is that you bring down those around you, too. You will have much to account for when you stand before the Lord. Wouldn’t it be easier to submit to God’s Word today? Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them. (Psa 119:165)

Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee. (Isa 26:3)

LORD, thou wilt ordain peace for us: for thou also hast wrought all our works in us. (Isa 26:12)

Dear God…
How can I know You if I don’t read
Your Manual on life
This can only bring me grief and pain
Causing me much strife

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But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, (Eph 2:4) In day-to-day living, we human beings learn by watching, reading, and listening. We watch some one’s actions and learn from them – there’s no better example of this than our own children and how quickly they “pick things up” from us – whether good or bad. What we read teaches us and influences our thoughts. Listening also teaches – if we are good listeners. Who we watch, read after and listen to is so important!

The best example and Teacher is our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. If anyone was perfect in mercy, it was Jesus. Noah Webster’s 1828 Dictionary defines mercy as:

1. That benevolence, mildness or tenderness of heart which disposes a person to overlook injuries, or to treat an offender better than he deserves; the disposition that tempers justice, and induces an injured person to forgive trespasses and injuries, and to forbear punishment, or inflict less than law or justice will warrant. In this sense, there is perhaps no word in our language precisely synonymous with mercy. That which comes nearest to it is grace. It implies benevolence, tenderness, mildness, pity or compassion, and clemency, but exercised only towards offenders. Mercy is a distinguishing attribute of the Supreme Being.

The Lord is long-suffering and of great mercy, forgiving iniquity and transgression, and by no means clearing the guilty. Num 14.

2. An act or exercise of mercy or favor. It is a mercy that they escaped.

I am not worthy of the least of all thy mercies. Gen 32.

3. Pity; compassion manifested towards a person in distress.

And he said, he that showed mercy on him. Luke 10.

4. Clemency and bounty.

Mercy and truth preserve the king; and his throne is upheld by mercy. Prov 28.

5. Charity, or the duties of charity and benevolence.

I will have mercy and not sacrifice. Mat 9.

6. Grace; favor. 1 Cor 7. Jude 2.

7. Eternal life, the fruit of mercy. 2 Tim 1.

8. Pardon.

I cry thee mercy with all my heart.

9. The act of sparing, or the forbearance of a violent act expected. The prisoner cried for mercy.

To be or to lie at the mercy of, to have no means of self-defense, but to be dependent for safety on the mercy or compassion of another, or in the power of that which is irresistible; as, to be at the mercy of a foe, or of the waves.

What a difference in definition when compared to today’s Merriam Webster Dictionary:

1 a: compassion or forbearance shown especially to an offender or to one subject to one’s power; also : lenient or compassionate treatment b: imprisonment rather than death imposed as penalty for first-degree murder2 a: a blessing that is an act of divine favor or compassion b: a fortunate circumstance 3: compassionate treatment of those in distress

The Christian has seen mercy from the Lord first hand. This lesson in mercy ought to pierce our hearts in such a way that we would want to be merciful to others. How merciful are you toward those who have offended you? Do you mete out mercy equal to that which Christ has shown you? Be ye therefore merciful, as your Father also is merciful. (Luk 6:36)

If we are not merciful toward others, we cannot expect the Lord to be merciful toward us when we need Him to be. Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy. (Mat 5:7) Showing God’s mercy to others brings happiness and joy to the believer because we are not oppressed by the consequences of sin. We have been freed and are free to love others and be merciful to them. We don’t feel like we are in shackles and bound. I don’t know if this makes sense to you but it’s the only way I can explain how I feel when I am not being obedient to God’s Word in an area that I know I should be. He that despiseth his neighbour sinneth: but he that hath mercy on the poor, happy is he. (Pro 14:21) This is probably one of the hardest lessons I have had to learn in my Christian walk. It is not human nature to be merciful. Our first reaction is to fight back and prove our point. The furthest thing from our minds is to obey this verse: And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise. (Luk 6:31) But Christ tells us that this is what is required of us. Jesus could have easily chosen the same merciless path as I but instead, He submitted to His Father’s will and showed mercy to all. We would be in sad shape had Christ taken the same route as us, wouldn’t we?

…Know therefore that God exacteth of thee less than thine iniquity deserveth. (Job 11:6b) We don’t deserve God’s mercy – but praise His Holy Name that He has shown mercy to us despite of our sin! So much the more should we Christians show mercy to those who hurt and abuse us. This is not an easy teaching to swallow but it is a needful teaching for our spirit. These lessons mold us and form us into the image of Christ and make us into vessels of honour for His use.

Dear God…
Christ, the great example
Of God’s mercy to all who live
May we follow in His footsteps
Standing ready to forgive

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But whoso hearkeneth unto me shall dwell safely, and shall be quiet from fear of evil. (Pro 1:33) As cute as this picture is, its message shows a kitten clinging on. The kitten climbed to a place he should not have been and now he’s in trouble. We’ve all had days, maybe even weeks, like this, haven’t we? We feel like we are at the end of our rope. If one more thing goes wrong, we’re going to snap! The Christian has promises in the Word which assure us of a compassionate Heavenly Father who is there to help us in those desperate times. He promises us that if we call upon Him, we will have the awesome privilege of dwelling in safety and we won’t fear what the future has in store. Our trials may still come but the Lord provides peace and assurance that He will be there with us and take care of all things.

When thou liest down, thou shalt not be afraid: yea, thou shalt lie down, and thy sleep shall be sweet. (Pro 3:24) How can you trust someone you only see on occasion? You can’t! Trust is built on day-to-day relationships. A couple who has been married for 20 years will trust their spouse more than a couple who has been married only a few months. The years of building up the relationship adds trust to their marriage foundation. It’s the same with our Heavenly Father. The older we are spiritually, the more we depend on His Word to pull us through, to guide us, and to encourage us. Those who seek God in His Word daily, learn that this is the place to go where you can meet the only One who has never broken a promise. He alone is trustworthy. The Christian is able to lie down and have sweet rest because he trusts his God to take care of all matters – knowing fully that He will not fail him.

And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. (Phi 4:7) We can’t understand how God can work all things out for all believers throughout all of time – but one thing is for sure, He can and He will. We cannot claim this if our hearts quickly fail us in time of trouble. What a testimony it is to see a dear brother or sister in Christ stand strong in their faith through a major trial knowing that God will pull them through. What a thrill for a Christian to be able to turn to the Master of the Sea to calm the storms of their life. There is no need to worry!

Are you worrying today, dear Christian? It is not a good testimony for the unsaved to see this in you. If a co-worker sees you worrying over unpaid bills or a broken-down car, how will they see the power of God at work? It’s the peace which passeth all understanding that will reach out to them. They will want what you have.

And seek not ye what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink, neither be ye of doubtful mind. (Luk 12:29) For all these things do the nations of the world seek after: and your Father knoweth that ye have need of these things. (Luk 12:30) Our Father knows our needs and is ever watching over us. Don’t worry about tomorrow and what it might bring. When you are busy serving the Lord, He promises to take care of all your needs – and much better than an earthly father can. But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. (Mat 6:33) Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof. (Mat 6:34)

Dear God…
Great is Thy faithfulness!
Great is Thy faithfulness!
Morning by morning new mercies I see.
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided;
Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me!
by Thomas Chisholm

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This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success. (Jos 1:8 ) Meditating daily on God’s Word is a key part of a Christian’s life. Why would you want to read the Bible just for the sake of reading and receiving nothing from it? God tells us in this verse that we should meditate on it day and night so that we will obey it. Meditating implies application here, doesn’t it? I know that I have meditated on many things but failed to apply it to my life. I did not allow the Holy Spirit of God to change me. It was not God that failed, but I am the one that failed. I was a hearer of the word only and not a doer. But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves. (Jam 1:22) When we understand what meditation is all about, we begin to understand how God uses it in our lives to mold us into the vessel of honour we should be.

When should we meditate? God’s Word reveals that we should meditate on His Word day and night. But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night. (Psa 1:2) Whenever the Lord lays a verse on your mind, nurture that verse in your heart. Think about it and meditate on its meaning. The Lord impressed it upon you for a reason. Search out your heart to see where this verse applies. Is it to point out a sin? Confess it. Is it to point you to a task to be done? Recognize the task and do it.

Who should we meditate on? When I remember thee upon my bed, and meditate on thee in the night watches. (Psa 63:6) Meditate on the Lord, Himself. When you cannot sleep, think of His goodness, His blessings, answered prayer, the trials He has brought you through, or your salvation.

What should we meditate on? I will meditate in thy precepts, and have respect unto thy ways. (Psa 119:15) I remember the days of old; I meditate on all thy works; I muse on the work of thy hands. (Psa 143:5) Meditating on the Word of God opens our eyes to God Himself. He reveals Himself to us within the blessed pages of our Bible. We learn about His omnipotence, Jesus’ return and His upcoming Kingdom, how to live godly lives, etc. We also can think about the work of God’s hands – His creation, our families, His Word, etc. The list cannot be exhausted.

What should we do with what we have gleaned from during our times of meditation? I will meditate also of all thy work, and talk of thy doings. (Psa 77:12) When we meditate on all that the Lord has done for us, we are then ready to share with others what He has done for us. Give God the glory due Him by sharing praises. Too often, we are quick to complain about our circumstances. However, if we have spent our night watches meditating on God’s Goodness, those complaints are long gone and praises rest on our lips.

When should we meditate? Princes also did sit and speak against me: but thy servant did meditate in thy statutes. (Psa 119:23) Let the proud be ashamed; for they dealt perversely with me without a cause: but I will meditate in thy precepts. (Psa 119:78 ) Whenever we are being attacked by the world, we should turn to God’s Word and meditate on it. It is there we will find peace in the midst of turbulence. We should meditate when we have trouble sleeping. But sometimes the sweetest times for meditation are found in those wee hours of the morning when all is quiet. Mine eyes prevent the night watches, that I might meditate in thy word. (Psa 119:148 ) Notice that David says that he prevented his eyes from sleeping so he could meditate on God’s Word. When was the last time I deprived myself of sleep so I could meditate on God’s Word? This was quite a convicting verse for me today.

What are the results of meditating? Meditate upon these things; give thyself wholly to them; that thy profiting may appear to all. (1Ti 4:15) When we meditate on God’s Word and apply what we have gleaned to our lives, we cannot help but grow spiritually. We become profitable and in so doing, we become a blessing to those around us. We can be used of God for their benefit.

When we do not meditate on God’s Word, we are revealing our spiritual barometer. If you talk to a Christian who is strong in this area of meditation, you will find a Christian who is solid and not easily caught off guard by the curve balls of life. He also has a spiritually firm foundation and can easily testify of what God has done for him. Strengthen and build upon your foundation by meditating on God’s Word today.

Dear God…
To read and run is tragedy
Nothing is gleaned or learned
But may we rest our weary souls
While we meditate and discern

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They shall still bring forth fruit in old age; they shall be fat and flourishing. Ps. 92:14 I don’t think I’ve ever seen a topic on what the Word of God has to say about our dear Senior Saints. I’ve always had a soft spot in my heart for this generation. I would love to run a retirement home where I could love and dote on these dear folks. The Senior Saints in my church have the greatest testimony when it comes to serving. They do not allow their age to stop them from serving God. Even those Seniors who walk with a walker or cane come to our church to help put tracts and flyers together so those who can go out soulwinning have information to take with them. They are the first to volunteer whenever the church secretary needs help putting things together. No matter what their age, they still serve God with whatever they have left in their weary bodies. What a testimony!

Many cultures today, sadly including our own, regard their senior citizens with disrespect. However, the Christian should be setting an example to the world on how one should treat the dear Senior Saint. The Word says But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel. (1 Tim 5:8 ) First of all, our dear saints should not have to worry about where they will live or how they will make ends meet. Each household is commanded by the Word of God to care for their own. The burden does not rest on the government, my friend. The Lord tells us the burden rests on us. So much so, God says that one who does not take care of his family is worse than an infidel (an unbeliever). Sadly, many unbelievers treat their senior citizens better than the Christian!

With the ancient is wisdom; and in length of days understanding. (Job 12:12) We can glean so much if we take time to listen to the wisdom that our dear Senior Saints have. They’ve lived a full life and have been through many trials and tribulations. We can learn from their mistakes as well as their successes. There is nothing more rewarding to me than to listen to a Senior Saint give an account of how God has blessed them or brought them through a trial. I did not always feel this way about my own parents. It’s amazing how much wiser my parents became the older I got.

Mrs. Sarah is an elderly lady I picked up for church every week. She lost her sight the last 12 years of her life and yet she was never bitter toward God for this trial. Mrs. Sarah lived in a government-subsidized home. The people who cared for her took advantage of her blindess and stole from her – the little that she had. She would hide the few dollars she had on her body because they would go through her dresser drawers. Instead of being bitter, she testified of God’s goodness every day. One of my greatest blessings was to listen to Mrs. Sarah share how she was raised by her grandmother. Her grandmother grew up as a slave on a plantation during the Civil War. Mrs. Sarah shared how her grandmother’s family would go hide in the woods late at night so their “master” would not know they were having worship services and Bible time! Do you think Mrs. Sarah’s grandmother complained? I never once heard Mrs. Sarah give an account of any such complaints. However, I did hear about how they hid God’s Word away in their hearts because they only had a few pages of a Bible which were hidden beneath the floor boards. I am a better person today for having known Mrs. Sarah. She’s home with the Lord now and no longer battles blindness! She was welcomed into heaven by that grandmother who hid God’s Word in her heart from those few pages.

Another dear saint I would like to tell you about is a man named Brother John. He also lives at the same home as Mrs. Sarah. Brother John was a dear and meek soul. He worked hard all his life as a window washer. Like Mrs. Sarah, his family never comes to visit him and his church family are all he has. Brother John made a statement to me one day which will stick with me until the day I die: “Eternity is too long and hell fire too hot for someone not to be saved”! Whether he made that statement up or not, he lives by it to this day. This godly man has never once complained in my presence. I’m pretty sure he is in his late 80’s by now and struggles with walking. But yet he’s still faithful in church. He knows where his power comes from.

Christian, how do you treat the elderly? Do you show them respect or do you make fun of them, young person? How do you treat your parents? It does not matter how old you are, it is never right to dishonor them. Honour thy father and mother; (which is the first commandment with promise;) (Eph 6:2) That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth. (Eph 6:3) I look at Hollywood and how many “stars” have died at a very young age. Their parents have been dishonored by their child’s wicked choices and God’s judgment was fulfilled because they dishonored them. Do you honor your parents? If you do, the Word says that it will be well with you and you will have long life. How do you treat them? How do you speak to them in front of others? Do you speak badly about them? How do you care for them? Do you place them on the pedestal of honor? Can God look at your parents and see you right beside them giving them a helping hand? These verses don’t say to honor your parents only when they are good parents. One of the best testimonies I have seen along these lines is of a dear friend of mine. His parents are not saved nor do they display affection toward their children. In fact, they dislike my friend because he is saved and takes a stand against sin. However, he does not let their hatred of the Word of God to stand in his way of honoring them. His father is now in a home and this friend takes care of his mother’s house. He makes sure her driveway is shoveled, her house is painted, and all those other chores. He has two homes he is maintaining but he never complains. He has other siblings in the area but he is the one that his mother can count on. I don’t know whether or not she associates his helpfulness with Christ-like behavior, but what a testimony he is for her. That is honoring one’s parents whether they are good parents or not. What a good son he is.

Have your parents died? There are Senior Saints in your church who could sure use some uplifting today. Do your parents live far from you? There are always Seniors Saints in your church whose children also live far away and they would truly appreciate a helping hand mowing grass or shoveling snow. Show your respect to a dear saint today! Sit back and enjoy their stories – I can assure you that you will walk away truly blessed.

Dear God…
I thank You for the Senior Saints
I’ve met along the way
Their wisdom and great counsel
Bring much blessings to my day

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