Reasons to Trust
Dr. Charles Stanley
We often find it easy to trust the Lord when circumstances are pleasant. In difficult times, though, resting in Him can be challenging. Yet that is precisely what God told David to d "Call upon Me in the day of trouble; I shall deliver you" (Ps. 50:15).
As we saw yesterday, trusting the Lord is possible because of His love for us. In the Bible, we see this divine love clearly demonstrated through the Father's character, the Savior's atoning death, and the believer's adoption as a child of God.
Another reason we can rely upon our heavenly Father is His infinite wisdom (Rom. 11:33). He always knows what is best for us, and His judgments are perfect. We don't understand all that goes into God's plan—compared to the full, clear view He has of our lives, we see just a limited picture of reality. Therefore, what He chooses for us may not make sense at the time.
We can also depend upon the Lord because He is sovereign. In other words, whatever He—in His wisdom and love—chooses to do, He is able to accomplish. Nothing stands in the way of our God. He is in complete control of all things; even Satan must obtain His permission before taking action (Job 1:9-12).
We understandably dislike adversity intensely and may feel tempted to ask, "Why, Lord?" Yet by recognizing that God acts in love, wisdom, and sovereignty, we can know that He's allowed the situation and has our long-term best in mind. So we can replace "why?" with gratitude and trust.
For more biblical teaching and resources from Dr. Charles Stanley, please visit www.intouch.org
When It Is Right to Disobey
Over the last few devotionals, we have learned the importance God places on obedience to various authorities. And an appropriate question is whether there is ever a time when we draw the line when it comes to obeying men.
In the Book of Acts, Peter and John got in trouble for preaching Christ. In Acts 5:29, when they were told not to preach anymore, Peter answered and said this,
"We ought to obey God rather than men."
That is where you draw the line. If you are ever asked to do something that would cause you to be disobedient to God or that would cause you to violate your conscience (not your preference, but your conscience), that is where you draw the line.
Paul made a statement that he lived in good conscience before God and before men. Your conscience deals with things you truly believe in your heart are morally right and wrong. If you go against your conscience in one of those things, then that is sin.
Stand your ground when it comes to conscience and obedience to God. If people ask you to do something that violates either of these two things—then it is time to take a stand for what you know is right.
For example, in many nations of the world, it is illegal to share your faith. It is illegal to win people to Christ. But Jesus said, "Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature." We have an allegiance to a higher authority. And when the authorities are telling us to do something that would cause us to disobey God, we obey God, not men.
Visit the Answers with Bayless Conley website for more ways to Connect with God
TGIF Today God Is First Volume 1, by Os Hillman
"For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline." 2 Timothy 1:7
God calls each of us to engage in spiritual warfare at times. Whenever satan wants to come against one of God's children, he does so by trying to intimidate through fear. Goliath's formidable size and arrogant boasting intimidated Saul and Israel's army. And because God's anointing had fallen from Saul, he was unable to respond with courage to Goliath's charge. Fear paralyzes and torments. That is why Saul could not respond.
The anointing had fallen on David, who was just a young boy, but mighty in spirit. David did not cower at the size or shouts of the giant Goliath. He saw Goliath through the eyes of God, who saw him as a mere speck. David had righteous indignation for an affront to the armies of the living God.
David did not weigh the risk of failure because his faith was resting totally in God. That is another important factor in overcoming fear-complete trust in God. When the Lord began training me to confront fear, the training grounds were a groundless lawsuit, intimidations, and calamity that confronted my very existence. Learning that these were merely tactics of the enemy, designed to instill fear, allowed me to stand firm in God's power to overcome.
Do not fear sudden calamity if you are walking uprightly before God. It may be setting the stage for a great victory that will bring praise and honor to your heavenly Father. These battles are training grounds for greater victories to come.
O Lord, thank You for Your wonderful promises! Though in this world, I face troubles, you have told me to take heart because You have overcome the world! (John 16:33 ). I am so relieved and thankful that through You, I am an overcomer. So, Lord, when I am overwhelmed or discouraged or faced by great challenges or tempted, please remind me that I can overcome when I rely on You. Remind me to "take it to the Lord in prayer" and allow You to carry me through. I also pray for wisdom and for that way out when temptation comes my way. Thank you. In Jesus' name, amen.
Today God Is First (TGIF) devotional message, Copyright by Os Hillman, Marketplace Leaders
Autumn Leaves - Eve Cassidy
By SIMPLY DIVINE LOVE on Saturday, October 30, 2010