Friday, July 19, 2013

Godly Leadership

Neh 5:15

But the former governors who were before me laid burdens on the people & took from them bread and wine besides forty shekels of silver; even their servants domineered the people. But I did not do so because of the fear of God.

Nehemiah had favor with the Persian king and had become governor over the Jewish people in Judah when he went back to rebuild the wall. He had every right and authority to take taxes and precedents were set that this what the government and leaders did. But he chose not to do it out of fear of the Lord.

Whatever it is, even if it is the norm & within your authority, don't do it if it goes against the Lord.

To think of how this could affect our country, our governments, our jobs and workplace, our churches....that we would have godly leaders. We each lead in some way or another - in families, work, relationships. We can follow Nehemiah's leadership example and lead with respect and fear of God.

Bless with Blessings

2 Chron 32:25

When benefits (in form of blessing, answered prayer, grace, etc) are given from God - give in return to Him & be thankful. Hezekiah did not, his heart was proud and God's wrath came upon him. Don't let God's blessing turn your heart proud. Remember it is not of you but of Him and always give thanks for what He gives.

Trust Your Conviction

1 Kings 13:16-19

This is about the prophet who confronted King Jeroboam and God told him to eat no bread, drink no water, & not go back to the place he had gone to confront the king. And he did as God said. But on his way back, another prophet finds him and tells him God told him to ask him to come back with him. The first prophet does as this second prophet asks and goes back with him - this is another prophet of God who said God told him to go get him so the reasoning is fairly easy to see - but since the first prophet disobeyed what God clearly told him, God sent a lion to kill him on his way home.

Sometimes we have to trust what we know we hear God say to us, even if another godly person, someone we look up to and trust and know is a Christian and has good intentions tells us they hear something otherwise. Trust God and trust what you hear from God.

Power Over the Repetitive

Heb 10:2-10

Christ came & took away the first (Law) to establish the second (New Covenant Final & perfect sacrifice for sin). He broke the need for repetitive sacrifice - burnt offerings, etc as established by the law. We therefore are able in the power of Christ to break the repetitive cycle of sin. There is no excuse and provision for an abundance of hope.

Moses Departure

Duet 32-33

Moses spoke to the people of Israel about turning from God. The greatness & blessing of God & their coming judgement. He talks about the righteous growing fat on the Lord's blessing & forsaking God by turning to idols. They made God jealous & He promises in turn to make them jealous by allowing Gentiles access to Himself.

v28-29 - For they are a nation lacking in counsel, and there is no understanding in them. Would that they were wise, that they understood this, that they would discern their future!

Evil enemies will come against Israel & eventually God will have compassion on them and vindicate them. In His power He says v37-39 "Who at the fat of their sacrifices & drank the wine of their drink offering? Let them rise up and help you, Let them be your hiding place. See now that I, I am He, And there is no god besides Me; It is I who put to death & give life. I have wounded and it is I who heal and there is no one who can deliver from My hand."

Powerful! Sounds eerily familiar! That we would fully recognize who He is and gain wisdom and understanding... 

Saturday, July 13, 2013


I love God! Sometimes you've just got to say that! I love how He shows things and uncovers truths at the right time. There's nothing more thrilling to me than when something pops out so blatantly and I know its from Him!

I could hardly stay focused when I first started reading this morning. My heart was sad and my faith wavering over situations at our little church. I won't go into details except to say its just really a struggle to stay positive and carry on when there is a lot of negative talk and conflict. Its easy to see both sides of conflict and have a heart divided over it, especially when there are people you love and care about on both sides. I know my rightful spot is to stay where we are and support our little congregation, but its still a struggle and still sad to see so many people conflicted and hurting....and leaving.

I was reading in Hebrews 10 today. It talked about Christ coming and taking away the first (the law) to establish the second (The new covenant and Christ's final and perfect sacrifice for sins). He broke the need for repetitive sacrifice - the burnt offerings, etc that were established in the OT by the law. He offered one sacrifice for sins for all time and...(I love the power in how this scripture goes on to read..v12-14) "Sat down at the right hand of God, waiting from that time onward until his enemies be made a footstool for His feet. For by one sacrifice He has perfected for all time those who are sanctified."

We are therefore capable in Christ to break our own repetitive cycle of sin. There is power to overcome it, power to live by faith, confidence to know we can depend on the promises of God. We are able to continue in faith and serve right where we are. We are able to see past the conflict, gain insight and to "discern our future" Duet 32:29. We live by faith, and in this way, we truly live!

Romans 1:15-16 says 16 I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile. 17 For in the gospel a righteousness from God is revealed, a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: "The righteous will live by faith."

So let us draw near God with confidence v22, put aside our willful sin Heb 10 v25, let us not forsake our own assembling together v24, let us encourage one another and stimulate each other to love and good deeeds v 24, hold onto our confidence, for we need an endurance that God can provide v35-36....

And finally v39 - We are not of those who shrink back to destruction, but of those who have faith to the preserving of the soul. 

Although there is conflict, I am encouraged to move forward loving others and serving God where I am. I know it won't always be easy or look pretty, but I truly feel encouraged today to seek God for endurance, to keep positive, to change what I can in His name where I am. Admittedly I have sat complacent and need to get moving. Part of the responsibility lies on me. I can have confidence and hope that God is faithful and will help our church. I pray that we will come together and serve as we should. Reach out to others and lift each other up.

Sorry if this one bounced around! It was just a quick one and there is so much more I wish I could express...I hope anyone who reads this though is at least a little encouraged and spurred on to endure and think about their role and their own faith and confidence to stand if they also are in a troubled spot.