God is Our Defense

There is little to no peace or security in our current world economy and civilization. We never know what catastrophe the news will publicize with the rising of the sun. The atrocities we humans perpetrate on one another are unthinkable; yet, they happen every day. Since sin entered the picture through Adam and Eve, wickedness abounds (Matthew 24:12).

The pride, selfishness and rebellion of the human heart allow sin to perpetuate throughout every generation (Romans 8:6). In some twisted way, people who are hurting will hurt other people to try to alleviate their own pain. Even if we distance our self from those who hurt us, we will only find true peace when we surrender our life to Jesus Christ and forgive our enemies (Philippians 4:4-8).

Trusting God, with gratitude in our heart and on our lips for all He already did for us, will allow us to transcend the daily grind of life and move us into the realm of viewing life from an eternal perspective. Then the peace of God, which cannot be found in the world or by thinking about carnal aspects of life, will flood our soul with serenity (John 14:27).

We will experience peace, even in the most horrific earthly trials, as we draw near to God and put our complete faith in His faithfulness (1 Peter 2:23). We gain our perspective by focusing on Jesus’ example through His betrayal, persecution, crucifixion and resurrection. He teaches us to suffer victoriously and He reminds us that Heaven awaits us in all of its glory (Hebrews 12:2).

God is our defense, no matter what we experience or how people treat us. If we trust in Him, live for Him and love Him with our whole being, He turns everything around for our ultimate good (Psalm 94:22; Romans 8:28). As we experience God’s will in the mundane circumstances of our day, we will also sense His presence during our trials. Christ in us will overcome obstacles for us and He will get all of the glory (1 Corinthians 10:31).

Prayer:
Father God, Your family is not a select race of perfectly mature and spiritual people, but it includes the outcast, the weak, the broken-hearted and the infirmed. You do not exclude anyone who calls on Your name for salvation, regardless of our human heritage or accomplishments. We are no longer strangers, but are included in Your family (Ephesians 2:19-22). The weary and distressed find rest under the shadow of Your wings (Psalm 91: 1,4).

Thought for the Day:
God is our only defense and our rock of refuge. – Psalm 94:22

God Haters – Why Serve a God Who Kills?

Some people ask, “How can you worship a God who started wars, commanded that women and children and animals be killed, and who causes trials for His own people?” This is an interesting question in light of the fact that humans have killed many more people through murder, human sacrifice and abortion than God ever “killed”.

To answer the question: God is the God of justice, as well as mercy and grace (Job 37:23). He wounds, but He also heals (Job 5:18; Hebrews 12:10). When whole nations turn against God, after He gives them many opportunities to come to Him, He sends warnings of judgment for years (Ezekiel 3:17-18). Some nations turn from wickedness, like Nineveh when Jonah preached to them.

However, when nations refuse to repent and come to God, He uses other nations to judge them, or He uses nature, like with Noah’s great flood (Psalm 119:71). It is interesting that Noah’s great-grandfather, Enoch, knew there would be a flood. God warned people for hundreds of years that a flood was coming.

Then, Noah himself warned the people for 120 years that God wanted them to repent and to turn to Him. God even used the ark as an object lesson that a flood was actually coming. Yet, people mocked Noah and ended up perishing.

God is love and He cares about every one of us (1 John 4:8; John 3:16). God loves us so much that He became one of us to pay the penalty of our sins (John 3:16; John 1:1). He made His laws for our benefit, not His. He does not want us to hurt one another, and He wants us to honor Him for who He is, what He does for us and for our very life. He is waiting for you to come to Him.

Prayer:
Father God, You amaze me with the abundance of love, which You showed over and over again on the nations You had Your prophets warn. You warn modern humanity too by your prophets’ Biblical history and through the preachers of your Word. The problem with the human race is our pride and self-reliance. Our penchant for giving Satan control of our life allows him to steal, kill and destroy (John 10:10). This grieves Your heart (Lamentations 3:33). Thank you for always turning around every negative aspect of life for our good (Romans 8:28).

Thought for the Day:
What Satan means for evil, God always uses for our good. – Genesis 50:20

The Benefits of Believing

Anger previously ruled our life, and rose up from the disappointments we experience from our conception, and which intensified throughout the years. Some have a more violent past than others, but we all suffered from deprivation, violence, permissiveness and/or wickedness in one form or another. Salvation through Jesus Christ eliminates much of our anger. Christ frees and heals the pain of our past and gives us courage to face the future.

The second asset we receive with salvation is the blanket of peace, which defies human explanation and envelops every fiber of our being (Philippians 4:7). We suddenly realize that we are not alone (Hebrews 13:5). We have no need to struggle through life any longer. Rather than seeing life as full of hopelessness, we see that all things are now possible, because Christ lives in us (Luke 18:27). In our exhaustion, we yoke up with Jesus and find fulfilling rest (Matthew 11:28:390; Hebrews 4:10).

Jealousy and envy no longer rot our bones (Proverbs 14:40), because we realize that God does not love another person better than He loves me. He loves us all enough to go to Calvary’s cross and bear the penalty of our shameful sins. Problems only arise when we compare our life to someone else’s and focus on what we do not have, rather than to live in gratitude for what we do have. God works all things, even bad things, out for the ultimate good (Romans 8:28; John 3:16, 3:34).

We are filled with God’s Spirit (Romans 8:9). We are able to accomplish the works God created for us to do (Ephesians 2:10), because we can do anything now that Christ abides within us (Philippians 4:13, 19). When we feel defeated, His grace is sufficient (2 Corinthians 12:9; Psalm 91:15). God works in and through us as we walk in His Spirit (Galatians 5:16-25). We are still powerless alone, but Christ in us is infinitely able. We are now more than conquerors and nothing separates us from His love (2 Corinthians 9:8; Romans 8:37-39).

Prayer:
Father God, You are our Everything (Psalms 23 & 91). There is not a hair on our head that grows in or falls out, which You do not see (Matthew 10:30). You give us wisdom to face the challenges of life (1 Corinthians 1:30), and You walk within us every step of the way (Hebrews 13:5). Each day, we acknowledge You and You direct our paths (Proverbs 3:5-6). When life worries or frustrates us, we can cast every care on Your shoulders, because You care for us infinitely more than we even care about our self (1 Peter 5:7).

Thought for the Day:
When I feel like I can no longer face the challenges of life, I realize that the King of Kings forgives me and provides me with love, power and a calm mind, which allows me to obey His will. – 1 John 1:9, Romans 8:1-2, 2 Timothy 1:7