Psalm 80:19 “Restore us, O Lord God Almighty; make your face shine upon us, that we may be saved.”
These words are repeated several times throughout this chapter. The only person who can truly restore us is Jesus! Jesus is willing and able to save anyone who calls to Him! If you have not made the decision to ask Jesus into your heart, today is the day of salvation. None of us ever know when we will take our last breath.
Proverbs 25:11 “A word aptly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver.”
I know I am always encouraged when someone takes the time to say something nice to me. So many times we don’t take the time to stop and encourage someone, or say something nice. When you see a friend today, stop and say a kind word to them. Jesus did not have to associate himself or talk with sinners, but He did. Who are you going to seek out and talk to today?
1 Thessalonians 5:14-18 “And we urge you brothers, warn those who are idle, encourage the timid, help the weak, be patient with everyone. Make sure that nobody pays back wrong for wrong, but always try to be kind to each other and to everyone else. Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Jesus Christ.”
The start of this chapter tells us that we will not know the day or the hour when Jesus will return to the earth. This whole chapter focuses on the coming of the Lord. These four verses above really stuck out to me. First off, we are to “warn those who are idle”. How many people today are simply living day to day and putting off asking Jesus to come into their hearts and lives. See, we can start to think, “Oh, I have a lot of time before I need to make that decision”…the reality of it is, Jesus could come back today if He wanted to. Today is truly the day of salvation!!! Or, how many of us are trying to back out from what the Lord would have us to do. The best place to be is in the Lord’s will, even though it may not be the most comfortable.
The verse continues on by saying we are to encourage, help, and be patient. If everyone put into practice encouraging others, helping others, and being patient with others, this world would be a much better place. Also, we are to treat others as we are to be treated. Jesus had every right to treat the people that were spitting on him, whipping him, and stabbing him in a wrong way, but he didn’t. This world is carnal and full of sin, so the reality is, we are going to have many people do us wrong. It is at times when we are treated unfair, that we need to remember Jesus’ example for us. The words that came out of His mouth when He was hanging on the cross were: “Father forgive them for they know not what they do”. I have really been thinking a lot about the life of Jesus, and what an AWESOME example He is for us.
The last part of these four verses talks about being thankful. This is an area that far too often I tend to forget about. There are so many things in this life to be thankful. It is often when a trial comes, that we realize that we should have been more thankful when everything was going well. It is my desire and my prayer, that the Lord would shape me into a person, who shows gratitude and thankfulness every single day.
My Utmost For His Highest – Feb. 25th
THE DESTITUTION OF SERVICE
"Though the more abundantly I love you, the less I be loved." 2 Corinthians 12:15
Natural love expects some return, but Paul says - I do not care whether you love me or not, I am willing to destitute myself completely, not merely for your sakes, but that I may get you to God. "For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor." Paul's idea of service is exactly along that line - I do not care with what extravagance I spend myself, and I will do it gladly. It was a joyful thing to Paul.
The ecclesiastical idea of a servant of God is not Jesus Christ's idea. His idea is that we serve Him by being the servants of other men. Jesus Christ out-socialists the socialists. He says that in His Kingdom he that is greatest shall be the servant of all. The real test of the saint is not preaching the gospel, but washing disciples' feet, that is, doing the things that do not count in the actual estimate of men but count everything in the estimate of God. Paul delighted to spend himself out for God's interests in other people, and he did not care what it cost. We come in with our economical notions - "Suppose God wants me to go there - what about the salary? What about the climate? How shall I be looked after? A man must consider these things." All that is an indication that we are serving God with a reserve. The apostle Paul had no reserve. Paul focuses Jesus Christ's idea of a New Testament saint in his life, viz.: not one who proclaims the Gospel merely, but one who becomes broken bread and poured out wine in the hands of Jesus Christ for other lives.