“In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans.”
Question To Ponder: Do you ever find yourself unsure how to pray for a person or situation? There is comfort in knowing that in those moments the Holy Spirit will join with you to approach the throne. Are you willing to ask for His help?
“You must not add to or subtract from what I command you, so that you may keep the commandments of the LORD your God I am giving you.“
God had Moses give this instruction to the young nation of Israel, and it’s just as important for us to hear today. As it says in Proverbs, “God’s Word is flawless,” and it’s impossible to make something more perfect! For years I made God’s commands more complicated and burdensome than He meant them to be. Then I wondered why I didn’t have much joy in serving Him. Now my goal is to be obedient in what the Lord truly calls me to do, no more, no less.
“Those who know your name trust in you, for you, LORD, have never forsaken those who seek you.”
Before I became a follower of Christ, I leaned on my own strength and understanding to get what I needed. I trusted in myself to control situations and make things go the way I wanted. To be fair, I didn’t know any better then. But the more time I’ve spent with God, the more I’ve seen of His goodness. Over and over again, He has been faithful to me. Sometimes He answers a prayer directly – other times He has worked in a way I didn’t expect. But looking to God always ends up bringing me a sense of peace I never had when I relied on myself.
“But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing...”
When I first came across this verse, it left me a little confused. I mean, were we supposed to be able to physically and mentally separate one side of our body from the other like that? But Jesus was actually teaching a broader principle about giving, namely that we are not to show off our good deeds. I heard a Pastor put it this way recently: if we let any generous conduct be visible to others, it should be for God to get the glory. Otherwise, we should be quiet givers.
“Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.“
Here in the U.S. it’s Veteran’s Day.
Thank you to those who have served in the Armed Forces. Your selflessness and bravery are an inspiration to the rest of us.
“We must do our business faithfully; without trouble or disquiet, recalling our mind to GOD mildly, and with tranquility, as often as we find it wandering from Him.”
“…make it your ambition to lead a quiet life: You should mind your own business and work with your hands, just as we told you…”
1 Thessalonians 4:11
“Real contentment must come from within. You and I cannot change or control the world around us, but we can change and control the world within us.”
“…I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation…”
“Gracious words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the body.”
Question to Ponder: do you realize the power that your words can have in someone else’s life? God actually gives us opportunities to join him in encouraging, inspiring and even healing the hearts of those around us. Are you ready to join him?
“All your children will be taught by the LORD, and great will be their peace.”
One of my worst habits as a mom has been trying to make sure my kids are okay all the time. There’s nothing wrong with me wanting my children to be live peaceful and safe lives – I think most parents feel that way. In the past, though, I have taken that desire as a call to fix every problem and comfort every hurt my kids go through. But when I think back on my own life, I see that those hard times were great opportunities for me to learn more about God. So if I always jump in to “save the day”, I’m actually holding my kids back from a chance to grow closer to their Heavenly Father.
“But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him.”
There’s a word that describes this kind of love – lavish. The father in Jesus’ story of the lost son doesn’t hold back his happiness about his son’s return. Excitement to see the young man compels him to rush down the road! The son must have been astonished – he’d been ready to beg for his father’s forgiveness and for a job. Instead, he is swept up in a warm embrace and welcomed home with a kiss. Jesus paints this picture of our Heavenly Father to teach us what His love for us is like. The more I experience of this lavish love, the more I want!