January 24, 2018

Blessings Are Better


The Lord also will be a stronghold for the oppressed.
A stronghold in times of trouble;
And those who know Your name will put their trust in You.
For You, O Lord, have not forsaken those who seek You.
Psalms 9:9-10

*   ~   ♥   ~   ✞   ~  ♥   ~   *

“Why isn’t God helping me?”  {We feel like this sometimes, don’t we?}  “I mean, if God was helping me then I’d have food to eat, money to pay bills, a job, a happy marriage…” and the list goes on.  Truth be told, God never promised us rainbows and sunshine.  Jesus Himself said,

“… In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
John 16:33b

Not something you think you would be hearing from the Creator of the world.  Frankly, I don’t see why He couldn’t have said, “In this world you will have easy times.”  That sounds so much better; but that isn’t what He said. He warned us that things were going to come our way that were not going to be so pleasant in nature.

This doesn’t mean that we are meant to just lay down and take every trouble that comes our way.  God is a good God; by His nature, He cannot do bad things.  There are very logical reasons as to why some things happen.  If you don’t eat right and exercise, you are going to gain weight and that weight gain left unchecked can cause health problems.  God didn’t give you those health problems…this all started back when you decided not to make the right choices.  If you decide not to go to sleep on time at night and your work performance slips and you end up getting fired, God didn’t take your job from you, you chose to make poor decisions.  These examples have results—they are called “consequences.”

I believe that God can make anything right.  As long as we go to His Word, turn from our ways, and do things His way.  If we are willing to learn the better way, God will show us a better way.

For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds.
And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.
Matthew 7:8

Here’s a thought: instead of asking God to give you money, why not ask Him to show you how to biblically manage your money so that you are better equipped to avoid money shortage situations.  Here’s another thought: instead of asking God for a better job, why not ask Him to show you how to appreciate the one you have.  My pastor told us that miracles are nice, but blessings are better.  At first I didn’t get it, but he explained that miracles go against natural happenings.  You know…the impossible.  Blessings go with natural happenings, i.e., blessed with a promotion for your great work or money in savings because you managed it correctly.

So, are you asking God to do all the work? Or are you willing to do your part?
God loves to help.

The Gift


Don’t you just love receiving gifts?  It makes us so excited when we are given a box with beautiful paper and a bow—and know that whatever is inside is ours!

I want everyone to think back for a few minutes to  the “BEST GIFT” you ever received?  Now…tell us: what was it?

I wish I could hear you tell me and to be able to hear the excitement and joy in your voice as you tell about that special gift!

There was one special Gift that was given to us all that will surpass all the gifts anyone has ever or will ever receive….  That Gift is JESUS!

But we must remember this gift can’t be ours unless we receive it by faith.  It can’t be of any use to us now or in our future unless we receive it  (Matthew 7:8 “For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened),  open it (Revelation 3:20  Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear My voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with Me.)  and accept it  in our heart  (John 1:12 “But to all who believed him and accepted him, He gave the right to become children of God.”)   And then we need to make this Gift our own as He meant for it to be.

Many times, gifts we have received over the years become something left on a shelf that gets looked at occasionally, or eventually something that wears out…but this Gift is one that is “alive” and is hopefully sought after every day.  It’s a Gift that you get to re-open every morning when you open His Word and you get to experience a new part of the Gift given to you from when you first said ‘yes!’ to Him.

It truly is “the Gift” that keeps on giving.”

He was born in Bethlehem they say, there was a star to light the path to where He lay.  Rich or poor they came from far and near, cause they’d all heard the reason He was here.

He was the Son God sent to one and all.  Put on this earth, to hang there on that Cross.
Born to die so we could live. He had the birthday, we got the gift.

They wrapped him up with gentle hands. God hoped the world would understand.
Eternal life we shall receive. And all that He asks in return is that we just believe.

He was the Son God sent to one and all. Put on this earth to hang there on that Cross.
Born to die so we could live. He had the birthday, we got the gift.

There’s no way in this world we could repay the miracle He gave us on that day.

He was the Son God sent to one and all. Put on this earth to hang there on that Cross.
Born to die so we could live. He had the birthday, we got the gift.

The Gift  ~  Randy Travis

 On our Savior’s birthday, we got the gift.

Dear God,

As I think about Your sacrifice You sent to each of us I am joyfully excited for this Gift yet my heart is still saddened because there are some gifts that are still unclaimed, some packages that are still unopened by many!  How sad You must feel to think that the “Gift” is not wanted!  The greatest gift of all, God’s Christmas Gift, Jesus Christ, is still unclaimed by millions!  I pray Lord that before this year is done those millions will say YES to you and open “The Gift” you have given for free.

In Your name I pray. Amen.