I hope you’ve been enjoying immersing yourself in the word of God. I know, for some, it has been a struggle, but I encourage you to stick with your committment of reading the Bible over the course of the next three months. From this first week’s reading, we have seen some interesting events and hopefully, learned some inspiring messages. When reading the book of Genesis, I could not but pause sometimes and ask, “Did this really happen?” There’s talking serpents, a dead man’s blood speaking from the ground, floods that destroy the “whole” earth and so much more that could boggle one’s brain. Well, I came the conclusion that these stories like the ones of the creation story and flood narrative are very similar in content to creation stories and flood narratives contemporary to that time period. Genesis and the next four books of the Bible are attributed to Moses writing them. How could Moses re-account these events when he himself was not there? The historical validity or the lack thereof of these stories don’t shake my faith in the Bible, God or my core religious beliefs. I am blessed by the beautiful message they lend to all those read they: God is all-powerful and in control. I was not there when God created the earth. I was not there when He sent the flood to destroy the earth. I was not there when he confounded the people of earth by scattering them abroad and changing their languages but I understand whatever happened God was the driving force behind it. I learn a deeper appreciation for His omniscience and omnipotence. We so many times try to vindicate the ways of God to man but as my grandmother used to say “the Lord moves in mysterious ways.” So I can never fully understand God. Just when I think I have Him figured out He somehow throws a curve ball and blows my mind with His awesomeness.
I think I can stop hear for now….but hopefully tomorrow I will be able to share something with you about one of my favorite stories of the Bible: Abraham.
PS: Sorry I hadn’t posted the reading plan for the entire 3 months yet. Pray for me. lol But here’s the second week’s reading:
Have you been wanting to commit yourself to reading the Bible–the whole Bible? Do you need a strategic plan that’s actually practical and easy to follow? Well, join me in going through the Bible in 90 days beginning June 1st. You can read the Bible in just three months by reading about 12 pages a day. Yes 12 pages. lol…There are two “grace days” just in case you miss a day or two of reading and don’t worry about not understanding all that you read. Every Sunday and sometimes other days too I will post something about the previous week’s reading. Plus, you can always post your questions, concerns and comments here.
Here is the first week’s reading:
Exodus 40: 38
The whole 90 day reading plan should be posted by Monday.
I know you may think that I’m talking about Christians who are always unwilling to give and to reach out to others in their time of need. The ones who are trying to get more and more–more material wealth and more status. But no, I’m not just talking about Christians who hold back the natural blessings such as money and charitable acts. I’m talking about those who are holding back what God has deposited into their lives. Paul said in Ephesians 1:2 God “hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings.” We have been blessed to be a blessing to others. God has richly deposited in us by his Spirit love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Galatians 5:22-23 Amplified Bible) so that we as Christians can deposit those same things into the lives of our friends, family, and even complete strangers.
Jesus did not save you for yourself but he also saved you for others. He told us in Matthew 5:14-16
14Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid.
15Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.
16Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.
The light of Christ that is in us is not to be hid. I reminded of when the children of Israel where still in Egyptian bondage and God had sent the plague of total darkness upon Egypt. The good thing about it was that the children of Israel were not in the dark like the Egyptians; the Bible says that they had light in their dwelling places. Metaphorically, it is the same for us; while others are in the dark, we should still be shining the light. We are the light in darkness. We should lighten up the lives of those who we come in contact with. We should do it with an encouraging word, showing concern when you feel things are not going right with a friend, or interceding in prayer on their behalf. In closing, just use what God has given you to bring glory to His name through others!
The average person thinks about 12,000 thoughts per day. There is so much to think about in today’s world. What are we going to eat? What are we going to wear? What are we going to do for the weekend? Then there are more complex things we think on such as relationships, money, and life purpose. Lately, my mind has been bombarded with thoughts about college, relationships, my future, my ministry, purpose and just life in general. The more questions I tried to figure out, the more questions I came up with and the more frustrated I got. We worry ourselves with so many questions sometimes. Yes, it is always good to think about what is your next step, what are some setbacks you made, what relationships and friends that you need to reevaluate. But how much thinking is too much thinking? It is when you are so consumed with your thoughts to the point you cannot function normally. You are not yourself anymore and this is when depression can come in.
I like what Jesus said what man (or woman lol) can add to his/her height just by thinking about it. There are many problems that we concern ourselves with that we don’t necessarily need to. The hymn said “oh what peace we often forfeit, oh what needless pain we bear just because we do not carry everything to the God in prayer.” So the answer to our problems comes from the Lord and is the Lord in fact but then another problem arises. In the words of my grandmother: if it ain’t one thing it’s another. So the problem that arises is I talk to the Lord but he does not answer me. I talk to him but he does not seem to hear me. He does not even seem to be there. I don’t feel him. But remember the Bible does not say that we live by our feelings, or emotions but it said the just shall live by faith.
The disciples asked Jesus “carest that not that we perish?” In other words why are you sleeping and it’s about be over for us? There are some times, I’m pretty sure, that others have thought God was sleeping on them. They did not receive the answer from the Lord in the time they needed it. The prophet Elijah on one occasion was looking to hear from the Lord in the wind blowing but didn’t. He then looked to hear the Lord in the earthquake but didn’t. Then He expected to hear the Lord in the fire but he didn’t. It was in that small still voice that he heard the Lord. When all the ruckus had stopped—when his mind was clear, when he wasn’t distracted anymore—he was able to hear the Lord. Many times we can’t hear the Lord because we’re talking too much. Sometimes, we can’t hear the Lord because we’re thinking too much. Sometimes we can’t hear from the Lord because our minds are clouded with too much stuff. The Bible admonishes us to cast all our cares upon him for he cares for us.
May the Peace of God, which passes all understanding, keep your heart and MIND….
The world, in which we live in, can many times be found to be cruel and heartless–leaving people without hope but I’m thankful for God’s mercy. It’s not because of my own goodness or right doing that I receive his mercy, but I receive it without any merit; I don’t deserve it, but yet God is plentiful in mercy to give it and to keep on giving it. What I like most about it is that no matter how unfaithful I am at times, God is faithful to show His mercy. The prophet Jeremiah said “…it is by the Lord’s mercy that we are not consumed.” There are probably many times that God would have unleashed His wrath but His mercy stepped in calmed his anger. People have named God as the “God of a Second Chance” but I have to come to know him as the God of Another chance and another chance and another chance. I don’t care how long you’ve been in relationship with God or what status you have in the church, you are still in need of God’s mercy. Jeremiah went on to say the his mercies are new every morning. God gives us a new measure of mercy everyday. He gives us another opportunity to live up to the standard that He has set, even though, we may have missed the mark yesterday.