Monday, July 22, 2013


The presence of God is not something to fear.  Rather it’s something to enjoy.  He made us with a capacity to enjoy Him.  It’s in the joy of the Lord that we discover the power and purpose of living.  In Psalm 16:11 (Amp) David said, You will show me the path of life; in Your presence is fullness of joy

Jesus tells us what we are to do in order to “experience” God’s presence first hand.  He says, “Those who accept my commandments and obey them are the ones who love me. And because they love me, my Father will love them. And I will love them and reveal myself to each of them” (John 14:21 NLT).  As you grow your love for Jesus by choosing to obey what He says, He will reveal His presence to you.  He will make Himself clear to you.  He will make Himself very real to you.  And the greater your awareness of His reality, the greater your joy. 

Jesus says, “If you keep my commands, you’ll remain intimately at home in my love. That’s what I’ve done—kept my Father’s commands and made myself at home in his love.  I’ve told you these things for a purpose: that my joy might be your joy, and your joy wholly mature” (John 15:10-11 Mes).  Following His commands and being at home in His love will increase your joy to overflowing.

Monday, July 15, 2013


God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us (Romans 5:5).  The knowledge of God’s love has been poured into the heart of every believer in Christ. 

Three significant observations can be made from this verse:

1. The word for “poured out” points to a large quantity. 
It means an inundation.  God’s love has “flooded” our hearts.

2. The verb tense is “completed action.” 
The love of God having flooded our hearts fills our hearts now.  The comparison can be made to a valley once it is flooded remains full of water.  We should be living in a strong and abiding sense of God’s love for us.  I think the issue for many is that of growing to realize His great love for us.

3. The instilling of the knowledge of God’s love for us is part of the “regular ministry of the Holy Spirit.” 
Therefore since this is a part of the Holy Spirit’s constant ministry and work within us, we should give great attention to it.  Many have become preoccupied today with the extraordinary, sporadic, non-universal ministries of the Spirit to the neglect of the ordinary, constant, general ones.  More interest is shown for exciting expressions than for the Holy Spirit’s ordinary work of giving peace, joy, hope, and love through the “inundation” in our hearts of the knowledge of God’s love for us. 

Yet the Spirit’s constant, ordinary work of love in our hearts is much more important than the extraordinary.  The Apostle Paul insists that without God’s love it’s all worth nothing:  If I speak with the eloquence of men and of angels, but have no love, I become no more than blaring brass or crashing cymbal. If I have the gift of foretelling the future and hold in my mind not only all human knowledge but the very secrets of God, and if I also have that absolute faith which can move mountains, but have no love, I amount to nothing at all. If I dispose of all that I possess, yes, even if I give my own body to be burned, but have no love, I achieve precisely nothing (1 Corinthians 13:1-3 Ph).

We must come to a fuller understanding of God’s love for us.  It benefits us to get more in touch with God’s love for us.  His love is with us.  We need to know it more.

Monday, July 8, 2013


We can learn to trust and follow God as a sailboat is dependent on the wind and sail great distances with God, or we can choose to trust in our own strength as a motorboat is dependent on its engine and only venture so far until we run out of fuel.

Sir Francis Drake prayed:  “Disturb us, Lord, when we are too pleased with ourselves; when our dreams have come true because we dreamed too little; when we arrived safely because we sailed too close to the shore. 

“Disturb us, Lord, when with the abundance of things we possess, we have lost our thirst for the waters of life. 

“Disturb us, Lord, to dare more boldly; to venture on wider seas where storms will show Your mastery; where losing sight of land, we shall find the stars.”

As you grow in your spiritual life, are you willing to look past the small body of water you know well and see the vastness of the sea?  Will you decide not to be confined by your self-generated power and instead decide to really believe what God says and trust His power?

I pray that you will understand the incredible greatness of God’s power for us who believe him. This is the same mighty power that raised Christ from the dead and seated him in the place of honor at God’s right hand in the heavenly realms. Ephesians 1:19-20 (NLT)

Monday, July 1, 2013


Sometimes it seems the Lord is taking a long time to answer our prayers.  It “seems” that way from our point of view.  David expressed his need to hear from God when he prayed, “O Lord, hear my plea for justice.  Listen to my cry for help.  Pay attention to my prayer, for it comes from honest lips.  …You have scrutinized me and found nothing wrong.  I am determined not to sin in what I say.  I have followed your commands … My steps have stayed on your path; I have not wavered from following you.  I am praying to you because I know you will answer, O God.  Bend down and listen as I pray” (Psalm 17:1-6 NLT).

You can do everything you know to do that is right.  You can serve God faithfully.  But answers to your prayers may seem a long time in coming.  God has His perfect timing, and He will answer in due time.  In the meantime our energy is to be given to serving Him and trusting expectantly in His promises.

Like Job, serve God because of Who He is, not for what you can get from Him.   Job said, “Though he slay me, yet will I hope in him; I will surely defend my ways to his face” (Job 13:15).  He knew God rewards righteousness and faith in Him. 

Keep trusting and hoping and anticipating in the Lord, even if you feel the answers to your prayers are delayed.  Remember God rewards faithfulness and He will show mercy and grace.