The Law Written in Our Hearts – Psalm 37: 31

Psalm 37:31

David was telling his people that God had written laws within their hearts that they must abide by. Doing so, would enable them to walk with God and not fall away from Him.

The law is within everyone, regardless of religion, race or age. Absolutely everyone knows right from wrong. David’s words were true for his people and are still true for us today.

However, we need more than that. Although God instilled the law in our hearts, we also need to read the Bible on a regular basis, filling our minds and souls with the Word of God so that we will understand the law and live by it, willfully.

What does this law of God consist of?

My thoughts: having holiness, perfect love, good motives, good desires, being honest, using wisdom, speaking righteously, staying obedient, watching our steps and being aware of where they are taking us, having the mind of Christ (hearing, seeing, speaking and acting like Jesus) and staying in a loving relationship with God.

There is much, much more that God has written into each of us. By reading the Bible, it brings the law to life and shows us how to remain true.

Then, when we do, think, hear, see, say or feel something that is wrong, we will feel convicted.

The Holy Spirit will help us by using those laws to remind us how the Lord wants us to live. By abiding, we will remain on the straight and narrow path, the one leading directly to our Lord.

Gracious God,

You are a wonderful, loving Father. Thank you that each day, you lead me, guide me, teach me and give me the knowledge of your Law and Word.

Thank you that the Law is entrenched deeply into my heart and mind. When needed, the Holy Spirit reminds me of the proper thoughts and words and they are instantly with me.

Sometimes I find myself caught in the middle of good vs bad. In those times of struggle, please help me to always listen and follow the Holy Spirit while he is attempting to lead me along the path of righteousness.

May I always live according to your laws and be in your love.

In the name of my Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, I pray.

Amen.

Annoyed vs Anger – Psalm 51: 10-13

PSALM 51: 10-13

[10] Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.

[11] Do not cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me.

[12] Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me.

[13] Then I will teach transgressors your ways, so that sinners will turn back to you.

The author (probably David) is feeling horrified at his own sins and pleads with God to cleanse him. David is asking for his heart to be washed and cleansed totally. He wants it to be as a completely new heart, one that has never been soiled with sin.

David asks for forgiveness and to be restored to the joy of salvation, which may mean that he either lost his salvation or at least lost the joy of his salvation.

Regardless of the reason, David has felt a deep conviction, has admitted his sins, has pleaded for salvation and asked to be totally restored as a new man. David is begging God not to leave him. He has known what it was like to be in a close relationship with God and now what it is like not to be and he does not like it at all!

It interests me that David begins to thank God for the mercies he hopes to receive by pledging to change and is even thanking the Father for a renewal of heart. He tells the Lord that he will be an example to others and show how he has changed. He promises to guide others, in their sinful times, to go before God.

This wasn’t a bribe David was making but a promise of what the new man would be able to accomplish, for (and with) the Father.

I love the trust and faith that David had. Somewhere inside of him, he had faith that God would restore him and he did everything he could to gain that friendship back.

Dear Father,

This scripture caught me off guard. It’s strange but for some reason, I always think you as a loving, kind Father who sees my sins and is waiting patiently for me to ask for forgiveness.

I have never thought of you as a stern father. It never dawned on me that you were possibly extremely angry with me every time I’ve sinned, especially in repeated sin.

Through this scripture I’ve learned that you were extremely angry with David because he was supposed to set an example for the people. As a Christian, I too, am supposed to set an example for those around me.

However there are times, when I fail in that. At times, I will repeat the same sin that I just asked for forgiveness from. I know I shouldn’t ignore the Holy Spirits warning, but sometimes do.

My thoughts are that you are hurt, disappointed and annoyed at me. Now I realize it’s much more than that.

There is such a difference between asking forgiveness from someone who you know is slightly annoyed and disappointed, than going before someone who is angry. The way of asking for forgiveness in both scenarios are done in completely different ways.

The first, is an off-handed, “Oops, I’ve blown it again. Please forgive me, thank you so much” sort of way. But going to ask for mercy from someone who is angry (or very disappointed) is a totally different experience. Everything is more intense…the words, the feelings, the pleading and the longing for forgiveness.

Father, I have been living in a world which sits in the middle of the two. I know I must come before you, with Jesus as my advocate. I know I must be humble and sincere in my prayers for forgiveness.

Now I see that my methods are too laid back. Am I living the same sins over and over because I know I can confess them and be forgiven each time? Am I coming to you with true repentance in my heart?

Biblical repentance is to change one’s mind that results in a change of action. Will knowing that you may be more than annoyed at me, encourage me to change my ways? I pray it will!

Lord, I am so thankful that you lead me to this particular scripture today and opened my eyes. Help me Lord to stay on the straight and narrow path. Help me to be a good example of Jesus in all ways, everyday.

Thank you Father that in the past, when I came before you, asking for forgiveness and mercy, that you, seeing what was deep inside my heart, forgave me. Even so, I pray Father that from this moment on, we will have a better relationship.

I am so very blessed to be your child. Please Lord don’t ever let me get so far away from you that I would lose my way.

I give you all the thanks and glory. In Jesus’ precious name.

Amen

God’s Plan for Our Lives – Jeremiah 29

JEREMIAH 29

[10] For thus saith the Lord, That after seventy years be accomplished at Babylon I will visit you, and perform my good word toward you, in causing you to return to this place.

[11] For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.

[12] Then shall ye call upon me, and ye shall go and pray unto me, and I will hearken unto you.

[13] And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart. (KJV)

Jeremiah, the Prophet, being instructed by the Lord, was writing a note to the people of Israel that God had sent into exile from Jerusalem to Babylon.

The false prophets were telling the Israelites that they would NOT be in Babylon for very long. God wanted to set things straight. Through Jeremiah’s letter, they are told that they must stay in Babylon for seventy complete years and not to expect anything different for the entire time. The letter(s) Jeremiah sent was to address the entire captives of Israel, not just certain individuals.

God advised them to live in peace and build houses, provide for themselves the necessities of life and have many children. (These children will grow up into powerful people).

God tells them that he has plans for their future and that he knows what kind of people they are. He says when he thinks about them, the thoughts are of peace and not evil and because of how they live, they can rest assured that they will always have an eternal home with Him.

The Lord says that if they call out to Him in prayers, he will listen to them and whenever they earnestly seek Him, with all their hearts, they will find him.

Heavenly Father,

Thank you Lord that I know the plans you have for my life? It is the same plan as you have for all of your children.

Your plans are to prosper us, not to harm us, plans to give us hope and a future.

Father, following the directions from the Bible which include: living peacefully throughout the good and the difficult times, seeking out Your Word and Your character, and giving our whole heart over to You, helps us to live according to the plan and to remain close to you.

My life may look totally different than what I may want or perhaps even expect (as your child), however by living the way I am meant to live, allows me to stay close to you. In that, I know I am living your Will and I can be assured hope and a future.

Thank you Father God, I am truly grateful.

In Jesus name I pray.

Amen. Hallelujah

Praising God in All Circumstances – Psalm 34

PSALM 34:17-22

[17] The righteous cry, and the LORD heareth, and delivereth them out of all their troubles.
[18] The LORD is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit.
[19] Many are the afflictions of the righteous: but the LORD delivereth him out of them all.
[20] He keepeth all his bones: not one of them is broken.
[21] Evil shall slay the wicked: and they that hate the righteous shall be desolate.
[22] The LORD redeemeth the soul of his servants: and none of them that trust in him shall be desolate. (KJV)

David starts the first 9 verses of Psalm 34 (not shown here) by saying that he will bless the Lord at all times, even in times of adversity.

Instead of trusting God to look after him, David chose to run away from Saul who wrongly wanted him killed. David had lost his faith and was attempting to solve problems in his own way.

David starts his long journey off by going into the Tabernacle (God’s house) but instead of being built up, he goes downhill. He lies to the Priest Ahimelech. He says he’s on business for the King. He uses the same excuse to get bread and a sword. He had the opportunity to tell the Priest the truth and possibly the priest could have helped him find God again.

David is not doing well. So far he has left his family and friends behind; he has lied to a Priest and is possibly going to try to blend in with the people of Gath. Leaving the temple, he headed right into the midst of the Philistines in Gath, carrying the very sword he had used to cut off Goliath’s head. He was captured and that’s when he found his faith again and wrote Psalm 56.

For the next part, some Scholars believe that David had the help of God and some believe that David acted of his own accord. Regardless David gave the appearance of a mad man and so they allowed him to leave, free.

Even though David was now safe from the Philistines, Saul’s men where still looking for him. David was reduced to living in caves. Although he was considered a fugitive, hiding out, having little to eat, with no end in sight to these conditions, he takes the time to write Psalm 34 with love and thanksgiving to God.

Beginning at verse 17 – A righteous (virtuous) cry can only be given by those who are holy and standing upright in the Lord. David; had been far away from God, but had found his way back and was now taking the time to honour God.

When God’s children come to him with a broken heart, he hears us. God also saves all people who come to Him with a contrite spirit (afflicted by guilt and expressing remorse), those crying out for mercy, he gives mercy.

As David shows, righteous believers are not exempt of problems but will go through many different afflictions that cause pain and/or suffering, even though we are counted as God’s children. God has allowed adversity into our lives because he wants to see growth in us.

He wants his children to realize that if we have trust in Him, the situation will be resolved, albeit, in God’s timing, not ours, in His way, not ours. He wants us to learn to stay in faith, while we wait on him. He wants us to learn to stop, to pray, to listen and/or to watch for the Holy Spirit’s leading.

David reminds us that as believers, we are never alone during these battles. The Lord will help us! Though we will sometimes get battle scars, they will be righteous ones.

David tells us that Jesus can take care of our bodies, (as he did for himself) but our body is not what The Lord is concerned about, it’s our spirit that matters to him.

Ever since the fall of Adam, everyone is guilty of sin. However, every person is given the choice to stay in sin or repent, giving the sin over to Jesus.

Those who choose to remain in sin, will die alone, in the bondage of evil. Those who choose righteousness, through Jesus Christ, will be freed from their sin and never be alone.

When David was running from Saul, he committed many sins and had lost his faith in God to help him. However, we see in this Psalm that David found his faith again. His faith didn’t come after God helped him but right in the midst of his problems.

No matter what we go through: good or bad, a righteous believer will always find a way to praise God!

(For more of this story, read the following chapters, in their entirety: Psalm 34, 1 Samuel 18 right through 1 Samuel 31 and also Psalm 54.

Heavenly Father

Do I go through trials? Absolutely! Do I lean on you to help me handle the problems? Yes Lord I do, most of the time.

Like in David’s circumstance, sometimes the trials seem so large that I have cowered down and hidden away. Instead of turning to you, I sometimes freeze and don’t know what to do.

Once in a while, I forget to call out to you and I take the matter into my own hands, hoping for a good solution that never comes.

Father, sometimes you call out to me, but I don’t listen. It seems like my ears are covered. Those are the times that I live in my own sorrow.

This scripture of David has taught me that as your child, you will give me the strength to always find peace in you, regardless of the situation. Thank you Father, that you wait patiently for me to find my way back to you, in the times I may wander.

Help me Lord, to know that your solution may not be the one of my choice. Help me remember that periodically I will have to fight hard and stand my ground, in an effort to win the battle. Remind me that although there will be times when I receive battle wounds in the process, I can stand through anything, with you beside me. Remind me to start each day covered with the Armour of God.

The unsaved cannot understand how believers can live in peace, even when our lives are crashing in all around us.

The wicked who prefer to fight their own battles, lose in so many ways. It may appear, at times, that they have won the battle, but at the end of time, they will realize in dismay, that they have lost the war.

At the end of our lives, EVERY person will bow to God and give an account of the way we lived. The outcome: the wicked will be overtaken by evil and the righteous will be saved and redeemed, by Jesus Christ.

I know Lord that the choices I make each and every day, are very important. They will determine my final resting place. David reminds me that with true repentance, all will be forgiven and I will be welcomed into the Kingdom of God for eternity.

Thank you that I have felt the peace of the Lord, many, many times but I’m always shocked at how tranquil I can feel, in the midst of turmoil.

In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, I pray.

Amen

When We are Burdened – Matthew 11

I have used these same verses on the blog “Pray for Salvation” but felt the Lord urging me to take it in another direction. I find it fascinating that God’s Word can touch so many different aspects of our lives.

If we are still carrying heavy burdens by ourselves it’s because we have not given them over to The Lord. He will always help us, but we must ask. At times we either forget God or immediately turn to others instead. The worse situation is when the enemy gets into our space and convinces us not to trust The Lord. In all of the above situations, we then continue carrying the burdens, hoping for a solution of our own making.

I have heard people say “Just give it over to the Lord” or “Let God carry it for you” or ” Trust in the Lord”. I wasn’t sure how to do that, so I asked God how I could accomplish it.

This is what He told me… He loves me in a way that no human could ever love me. He loved me before the foundation of the earth and will love me into eternity. Because of his great love for me, when I ask for help, he will take my hand and guide me. He will help me learn how to handle my problems, however; he will NOT just take them away.

As I began reading and studying scripture and learning more about Jesus, the Holy Spirit and God,  I came to realize that in ALL times and in ALL circumstances, I am to talk to God, and thank him for whatever I am going through; good or bad. No that’s not an error, we must be thankful for the difficult times as well as the good. The difficult situations are the times of growth, something (believe it or not) that we usually end up being thankful for.

Knowing all of this, I tried to lean on Him. “Just let it go” was not easy for me. I liked to plan and have everything happen in the order I thought it should. I wanted to stay on my time line, from beginning to end, without complications. I had a plan B,C,D and E as well. I always believed I had everything covered. Lol. But every time my plans failed, (as they did quite often) panic would set in.

I really thought that I was giving the burdens over to God, but unfortunately, I was still holding onto them (or at least some of part of them.) After years of trying and failing, I got so frustrated one day that I gave up and said (from deep inside my soul) “Okay Father, you do it!” It was at that point I finally realized God would truly lead me and guide me and I learned let it all go.

Now when I encounter a challenging situation, I take a deep breath and attempt to relax.

I coax myself not to panic, but to remember that God is in control and I am his child. He knows what is happening and that gives me the confidence to follow wherever he leads me.

Most often that leading takes me straight to the Bible, to his Word. I look up passages regarding my situation and I read, meditate and pray over them until I feel a peacefulness come over me.

The more I take in his word, the easier it is for me to believe for a good end to the situation, even before I see it with my eyes. (Using faith) If I slip up and say or think something like “I’m not sure this will work” I immediately command the thought of non-belief to leave me immediately and I thank God that he is in control.

I repeat Bible verses like “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” and I listen to and sing songs that speak the word of God. (The Casting Crowns – “The Voice of Truth” always works well for me). As I lean on the words they go deep into my soul and I find it much easier to rest in the Lord.

I also do exactly what my Heavenly Father tells me to do, no matter how strange it may appear to me. (Please don’t take this to mean something that goes against the Lord’s Will because that is not what I’m saying).

However, if God leads me to walk to an ice cream shop and to stand outside the door on a freezing cold day, I’ll do it. It may not make sense to me but God may have me bump into someone who has just the perfect answer to my dilemma.

Sometimes I follow God’s lead and nothing APPEARS to happen. I’ve now learned, that’s okay too because God works in mysterious ways. I would just go home when feeling I should. However I keep the faith that something DID happened, even though I didn’t see it with my eyes.

God may place a commercial or a magazine article or any number of other methods which may lead us in the direction he wants us to go. Our job is to keep our eyes, ears and souls open for signs.

Sometimes our burdens are just meant to draw us closer to Him. Every situation is different. I believe that everything we go through; good or bad, has a reason and will add value to our heavenly bodies, one day.

So to recap

1 – Accept Jesus into our heart. Allow him to be our Lord and Saviour. We will never regret our decision.

2 – Pray and tell the Lord what our exact needs are. He already knows but maybe he wants us to pray, so that we can learn to separate our needs from our wants. Are our wants according to his will?

3 – Thank God for working on our prayers and tell him we will wait on him to lead us, regardless of how long it takes.

This does not mean to sit at home waiting for a job to drop into our laps. It means to go out and look for a job but also to watch for messages from God.

4 – Be careful what we think. We must not listen to the negative thoughts we may encounter. We must put a stop to them immediately.

Cast them out by saying something like “I am a child of God and in the name of my Lord Jesus Christ, I command you to shut up and leave me now”. Then replace those bad thoughts with good ones, like… “Thank you Lord for watching over me and working on my situation. I will wait in peace.”

In the hard times we are to ask for help and for understanding and to pray that we can stand strong in all circumstances. Wearing the Armour of God every day helps us to do just that.

5 – Be happy as we wait! Important part!

Being happy shows us and others that we have faith in the Lord: that even when we are going through possibly the worst time in our lives, we can have faith that God will bring us through it.

Many people believe you are never to talk about what you are going through and that you should be fake in your happiness. It does NOT mean that at all. If we need to talk to someone about our situation, do it. However God does not want us to walk around, dragging our feet, telling absolutely everyone all of our problems and looking like the world is collapsing in on us. It may be doing just that, but when others see a Christian downtrodden, they immediately may think “hey, where is their God now?” Of course, it depends on the degree of the circumstance – losing a job doesn’t even begin to compare to losing a child, but overall I believe it’s better for us not to be sad and glum. Rejoice in the Lord!

Fake enthusiasm is not to be used. By knowing that God is in control we don’t have to “fake” feeling good in all times, because we will truly have a peace that passes all understanding.

6 – Praise the Lord for what he is about to do. Sing to him. Praise him. Thank him for working in our lives and for helping us to stay focused on Him, instead of on the problem.

Remember that God does NOT bring the bad times on us. We are living in a world of sin and there will be consequences. However God does use our trials, to teach us important lessons. Sometimes our situations seem as though there will never be an end to the bad times. The important thing to remember is that God IS aware of what we are going through and it will be much easier if we learn to lean on him at all times.

In difficult times we are to ask for help and for understanding and we are to pray that we can stand strong in all circumstances. Wearing the “Armour of God” everyday (LINK PLEASE) helps us to do just that.

Just because we are God’s children and have prayed, does NOT mean that our Heavenly Father will remove the burdens. It means that he will continue to stand right by us, (he will share our yoke) while we go through them. Having the faith and the support of God, will allow us to not to be weary but to have rest.

7 – When the situation has been resolved we should give praise and thanks to the Lord!

He never leaves us alone. He is ever present and knows exactly what is happening and will give us the strength to get through it all, when we lean on him.

Jesus is willing to help us bear our load, if we are willing to give it over to him?

Heavenly Father

You are an awesome God. Every day you look after all of your children. You lead us, guide us, watch us and monitor our situations. We are so blessed Lord, thank you.

I pray Father that this message will touch people’s hearts and that they will understand that we can stand solid even during times of tribulation.

Is it easy to lean on God? At first, absolutely not! Can anyone do it? Absolutely yes! We need to follow your Word and we will learn that with you God in our corner, we can stand strong against any situation.

Thank you Father for loving and giving me peace and faith in you, each and every day.

All for the glory of God!

In Jesus’ name.

Amen