Tag Archives: Direction

From “The Word For You Today” by Bruce Christian

WHEN YOU CAN’T UNDERSTAND, TRUST GOD

The Bible says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding, in all your ways acknowledge Him, and he shall direct your paths” (Pro 3:5-6 NKJV).  But what if your path leads through pain, pressure, and problems?  John the Baptist’s did.  He didn’t deserve imprisonment.  After all, he was the forerunner of Christ and the voice of God in the community.  Plus, he was Jesus’ cousin.  So he sent Jesus a message asking, “Are you really the Messiah, or should we keep looking?”  Paraphrased: “Lord, if I’m in your will, how come I’m in this situation?”  It’s a question motivated by unfulfilled expectations.  We think, “Lord, I’ve obeyed you, how come things aren’t working out for me?”  And it feels worse when you’ve faithfully served Him.  Writing about her daughter’s death, Meg Woodson says, “I’ll never forget those shrill, piercing screams, that the God who could have helped, looked down on this young woman who was devoted to Him…and decided to sit on His hands and let her death top the horror charts.”  Talk about unmet expectations!  Jesus could have saved John, but He didn’t.  Instead He sent back word: “Don’t worry, everything’s on target, the kingdom is being built.  You did your job well” (See Mt 11:4-5).  It probably wasn’t the answer John hoped for.  He was looking for solutions to temporal problems while Jesus was busy establishing an eternal kingdom.  So next time God doesn’t seem to meet your expectations, it’s not that He doesn’t care; it’s that He sees the big picture and He’s handling issues you can’t even begin to comprehend.  So trust Him!

From “Day-By-Day By Grace” by Bob Hoekstra

Sometimes we need a reminder, and other times we need to ask ourselves a question…

 

Living According to God’s Word

You have dealt well with Your servant, O LORD, according to Your word. (Psa_119:65)

David was a man who basically lived by grace (that is, by depending on the Lord to work in his life). Consequently, he trusted in the word of God (“the word of His grace” — Act_20:32). David lived according to God’s word. Psalm 119 bears substantial testimony of what can happen when one lives in this manner. “You have dealt well with Your servant, O LORD, according to Your word.” This strategic phrase (“according to Your word” ) has two implications: living in line with God’s word and living by the provisions of God’s word.

Therefore, those who live according to God’s word not only find their direction in the Scriptures, they find resource there as well. Many fruitful and respected Bible teachers (like C. H. Spurgeon) are convinced that David was the human instrumental author of Psalm 119. Whether this is true or not is incidental to our present meditation. In this majestic Psalm, the Holy Spirit (the ultimate author) depicts the all-inclusive nature of living according to the word.

Every person on earth begins their life with a sin problem (guilty, condemned, alienated from God). If a person wants to have their life cleaned up spiritually, they can see that accomplished according to God’s Word. “How can a young man cleanse his way? By taking heed according to Your word” (Psa_119:9). Anyone who will pay close attention to the message of the scriptures will find therein God’s provision of forgiveness and salvation. “Let Your mercies come also to me, O LORD — Your salvation according to Your word” (Psa_119:41). God’s merciful salvation (from sin and unto godliness) is enjoyed by those who call upon Him wholeheartedly. “I entreated Your favor with my whole heart; Be merciful to me according to Your word” (Psa_119:58).

Every person who has found new life through the Lord’s merciful salvation eventually encounters times when a reviving is needed. The difficulties of life seem to choke all spiritual vitality out of us. It is time to call upon the Lord and turn to His word. “I am afflicted very much; Revive me, O LORD, according to Your word” (Psa_119:107). Sometimes, the battle is so intense that our inner man seems to be smashed face down in the dirt. Again, it is time to seek the Lord in His word. “My soul clings to the dust; Revive me according to Your word” (Psa_119:25). Yes, in God’s word, we find direction for our lives and replenishing of our lives.

Dear Lord of the scriptures, I praise You for giving me new life according to Your word. Now, in the afflictions and battles that I face, I ask You to revive me according to Your word.

From “The Selected Writings of Joseph Philpot”

“Because your heart was tender and you humbled yourself before the Lord when you heard what I have spoken against this place and its people, that they would become accursed and laid waste, and because you tore your robes and wept in my presence, I have heard you, declares the Lord.”2Ki_22:19

This tenderness of heart was a mark in Josiah, on which the Lord, so to speak, put his finger; it was a special token for good which God selected from all the rest, as a testimony in his favor. The heart is always tender which God has touched with his finger; this tenderness being the fruit of the impression of the Lord’s hand upon the conscience. You may know the difference between a natural conscience and a heart tender in God’s fear by this — that the natural conscience is always superstitious and uncertain; as the Lord says, it”strains out a gnat, and swallows a camel.”It is exceedingly observant of self-inflicted austerities, and very fearful of breaking through self-imposed rules; and while it will commit sin which a man who has the fear of God in his heart would not do for the world — it will stumble at mere unimportant trifles at which an enlightened soul would not feel the least scruple.

But here is the mark of a heart tender in God’s fear — it moves as God the Spirit works upon it. It is like the mariner’s compass, which having been once touched by the magnet, always turns toward the north; it may indeed oscillate and tremble backwards and forwards, but still it will return to the pole, and ultimately remain fixed at the point whence it was temporarily disturbed. So when the heart has been touched by the Spirit, and has been made tender in God’s fear, it may for a time waver to the right hand or to the left, but it is always trembling and fluctuating until it points towards God, as the only and eternal center of its happiness and holiness.