Tuesday, April 24, 2018

what?

As for me,

I am poor

& needy,

but the Lord is thinking about me

right now.

Psalm 40:17a (NLT, 1st ed.)



I remember the first time I read that verse in the NLT 1st edition.

It really rocked my world.

I was like a thunderbolt to my mind & spirit.

There was David, King of Israel, speaking a ridiculously profound truth, from his vantage point, 3000 years ago.

And that truth is that the God of the universes, who is blindingly holy, all power, eternal, & the very essence of love, was thinking about me right then.

I know that is a fantastic thought.

But if God is who He claims to be, then He is able to be & do that - to be thinking about me, personally, as well as the gajillion other people & things He's created.

Don't try to wrap your mind around how many people & things He has to think about at one time - it can short circuit your brain.

Instead, just center in on one thing - the God of the universes is thinking about you, & me - right. now.


I still can't really wrap my mind around that - I just kinda have to believe it without completely comprehending it.


But do this one thing for me today...

As you pass through your day today, whisper just this one thing to yourself (warning: the devil will try to whisper the exact opposite to you!):


God is aware of me, & He's is thinking about me right now


This isn't some kind of "positive thinking" claptrap.

It's just something we ought to remind ourselves of today.

Whisper that to yourself today, instead of all that other crap you say to yourself every day.


Do. it.


* * * * * * * * * * *

Btw, I don't think I've ever shared all of Psalm 40 in this blog before.

I mean, I didn't check back - I think I've written over 3000, so maybe I did back in the mists of the last 10-15 years.


Anyway, here's Psalm 40 - by King David, 3000 years ago...




Psalm 40

1 I waited patiently for the LORD to help me,

  and he turned to me and heard my cry.
2 He lifted me out of the pit of despair,
  out of the mud and the mire.
He set my feet on solid ground
  and steadied me as I walked along.
3 He has given me a new song to sing,
  a hymn of praise to our God.
Many will see what he has done and be amazed.
  They will put their trust in the LORD.

4 Oh, the joys of those who trust the LORD,
  who have no confidence in the proud
  or in those who worship idols.
5 O LORD my God, you have performed many wonders for us.
  Your plans for us are too numerous to list.
  You have no equal.
If I tried to recite all your wonderful deeds,
  I would never come to the end of them.

6 You take no delight in sacrifices or offerings.
  Now that you have made me listen, I finally understand*—
  you don't require burnt offerings or sin offerings.
7 Then I said, "Look, I have come.
  As is written about me in the Scriptures:
8 I take joy in doing your will, my God,
  for your instructions are written on my heart."

9 I have told all your people about your justice.
  I have not been afraid to speak out,
  as you, O LORD, well know.
10 I have not kept the good news of your justice hidden in my heart;
  I have talked about your faithfulness and saving power.
I have told everyone in the great assembly
  of your unfailing love and faithfulness.

11 LORD, don't hold back your tender mercies from me.
  Let your unfailing love and faithfulness always protect me.
12 For troubles surround me—
  too many to count!
My sins pile up so high
  I can't see my way out.
They outnumber the hairs on my head.
  I have lost all courage.

13 Please, LORD, rescue me!
  Come quickly, LORD, and help me.
14 May those who try to destroy me
  be humiliated and put to shame.
May those who take delight in my trouble
  be turned back in disgrace.
15 Let them be horrified by their shame,
  for they said, "Aha! We've got him now!"

16 But may all who search for you
  be filled with joy and gladness in you.
May those who love your salvation
  repeatedly shout, "The LORD is great!"
17 As for me, since I am poor and needy,
  but the Lord is thinking about me right now.
You are my helper and my savior.
  O my God, do not delay.

Monday, April 23, 2018

remember...

Here's a reminder of a fact of life, from the psalmist, King David of Israel, who lived around 3000 years ago.

Yeah... 3000 years ago.



Psalm 39

4 "LORD, remind me how brief my time on earth will be.


  Remind me that my days are numbered—


  how fleeting my life is.


5 You have made my life no longer than the width of my hand.


  My entire lifetime is just a moment to you;


  at best, each of us is but a breath."


6 We are merely moving shadows,


  and all our busy rushing ends in nothing.


We heap up wealth,


  not knowing who will spend it.


7 And so, Lord, where do I put my hope?


  My only hope is in you.

Sunday, April 22, 2018

incredible

Incredible truth, coupled with an incredible challenge.

Paul says a bunch in these few verses...



Romans 10

9 If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord 

and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, 

you will be saved.

10 For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, 

and it is by confessing with your mouth that you are saved.

11 As the Scriptures tell us, 

"Anyone who trusts in him will never be disgraced."

12 Jew and Gentile are the same in this respect. 

They have the same Lord, 

who gives generously to all who call on him.

13 For "Everyone who calls on the name of the LORD will be saved."


  14 But how can they call on him to save them unless they believe in him? 

And how can they believe in him if they have never heard about him? 

And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them?

15 And how will anyone go and tell them without being sent? 

That is why the Scriptures say, 

"How beautiful are the feet of messengers who bring good news!"

Saturday, April 21, 2018

selected verses

Here's some verses from Psalm 37 that I have underlined.

Maybe these are just for me today?

Maybe they can speak to you?



Psalm 37

3 Trust in the Lord & do good.

Then you will live safely in the land & prosper.

4 Take delight in the Lord,

& He will give you your heart's desires.

5 Commit everything you do to the Lord.

Trust Him,

& He will help you.

6 He will make your innocence as clear as the dawn,

& the justice if your cause will shine like the noonday sun.

7 Be still in the presence of the Lord,

& wait patiently for Him to act.


23 The steps of the godly are directed by the Lord.

He delights in every detail of their lives.

24 Though they stumble, they will not fall,

for the Lord holds them by the hand.


25 Once I was young,

now I am old.

Yet I have never seen the godly forsaken.


34 Don't be impatient for the Lord to act!

Travel steadily along His path.

He will honor you,

giving you the land.


39 The Lord saves the godly;

He is their fortress in times of trouble.

40 The Lord helps them,

rescuing them from the wicked.

He saves them,

& they find shelter in Him.



I don't know what these verses might mean for you because I don't know what they mean for me in my seemingly impossible place.

I know that is God's word - iow, God speaking to us in our impossible places.

All I know is all I know - that's what stood out today.


Maybe these verses were just for me - a kick in the pants - a call to keep on - idk...

I hope they will encourage you in whatever way you need today.

Friday, April 20, 2018

Romans 8

Here's one of the most amazing chapters in the whole Bible, written by Paul, to the followers of Jesus in Rome.

It's one of those chapters by Paul that just has pivotal statements, one right after another.


Romans 8

1 So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus.

2 And because you belong to him, the power of the life-giving Spirit has freed you from the power of sin that leads to death.

3 The law of Moses was unable to save us because of the weakness of our sinful nature. 

So God did what the law could not do. 

He sent his own Son in a body like the bodies we sinners have. 

And in that body God declared an end to sin's control over us by giving his Son as a sacrifice for our sins.

4 He did this so that the just requirement of the law would be fully satisfied for us, 

who no longer follow our sinful nature but instead follow the Spirit.



  5 Those who are dominated by the sinful nature think about sinful things, 

but those who are controlled by the Holy Spirit think about things that please the Spirit.

6 So letting your sinful nature control your mind leads to death. 

But letting the Spirit control your mind leads to life and peace.

7 For the sinful nature is always hostile to God. 

It never did obey God's laws, 

and it never will.

8 That's why those who are still under the control of their sinful nature can never please God.



  9 But you are not controlled by your sinful nature. 

You are controlled by the Spirit 

if you have the Spirit of God living in you. 

(And remember that those who do not have the Spirit of Christ living in them do not belong to him at all.)

10 And Christ lives within you, 

so even though your body will die because of sin, 

the Spirit gives you life 

because you have been made right with God.

11 The Spirit of God, who raised Jesus from the dead, lives in you. 

And just as God raised Christ Jesus from the dead, 

he will give life to your mortal bodies by this same Spirit living within you.



  12 Therefore, dear brothers and sisters, you have no obligation to do what your sinful nature urges you to do.

13 For if you live by its dictates, 

you will die. 

But if through the power of the Spirit you put to death the deeds of your sinful nature, 

you will live.

14 For all who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God.


  15 So you have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves. 


Instead, you received God's Spirit when he adopted you as his own children. 

Now we call him, "Abba, Father."

16 For his Spirit joins with our spirit to affirm that we are God's children.

17 And since we are his children, 

we are his heirs. 

In fact, together with Christ we are heirs of God's glory. 

But if we are to share his glory, 

we must also share his suffering.


18 Yet what we suffer now is nothing compared to the glory he will reveal to us later.


19 For all creation is waiting eagerly for that future day when God will reveal who his children really are.

20 Against its will, all creation was subjected to God's curse. 

But with eager hope, 21 the creation looks forward to the day when it will join God's children in glorious freedom from death and decay.

22 For we know that all creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time.

23 And we believers also groan, 

even though we have the Holy Spirit within us as a foretaste of future glory, 

for we long for our bodies to be released from sin and suffering. 

We, too, wait with eager hope for the day when God will give us our full rights as his adopted children, 

including the new bodies he has promised us.

24 We were given this hope when we were saved. 

(If we already have something, we don't need to hope for it.25 But if we look forward to something we don't yet have, we must wait patiently and confidently.)


  26 And the Holy Spirit helps us in our weakness. 


For example, we don't know what God wants us to pray for. 

But the Holy Spirit prays for us with groanings that cannot be expressed in words.

27 And the Father who knows all hearts knows what the Spirit is saying, 

for the Spirit pleads for us believers in harmony with God's own will.

28 And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.

29 For God knew his people in advance, 

and he chose them to become like his Son, 

so that his Son would be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters.

30 And having chosen them, 

he called them to come to him. 

And having called them, 

he gave them right standing with himself. 

And having given them right standing, 

he gave them his glory.


31 What shall we say about such wonderful things as these? 


If God is for us, 

who can ever be against us?

32 Since he did not spare even his own Son but gave him up for us all, 

won't he also give us everything else?

33 Who dares accuse us whom God has chosen for his own? 

No one—for God himself has given us right standing with himself.

34 Who then will condemn us? 

No one—for Christ Jesus died for us and was raised to life for us, 

and he is sitting in the place of honor at God's right hand, pleading for us.



  35 Can anything ever separate us from Christ's love? 

Does it mean he no longer loves us if we have trouble 

or calamity, 

or are persecuted, 

or hungry, 

or destitute, 

or in danger, 

or threatened with death?

36 (As the Scriptures say, "For your sake we are killed every day; we are being slaughtered like sheep.")

37 No, 

despite all these things, 

overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, 

who loved us.



  38 And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God's love. 

Neither death 

nor life, 

neither angels 

nor demons, 

neither our fears for today 

nor our worries about tomorrow...

not even the powers of hell can separate us from God's love.

39 No power in the sky above 

or in the earth below...

indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.