January 17 – Word Trumps Wonder

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 I’ve often thought how wonderful it must have been to be alive when the Son of God walked the earth. It seems like it would have been a lot easier to believe in Him. In my mind, I also tend to think surely everyone must have been completely enraptured by His mighty works.

Surely they knew this was indeed the Son of God! However, the Bible gives a number of accounts that don’t validate my mental ideologies.

One such instance occurs around the feeding of five thousand men and their families (John 6). After Christ transformed two tiny fish and five small barley loaves into a massive smorgasbord, the crowd was set on making him king. But in less than 24 hours, many of that same bunch turned their backs on Him.

His words were too heavy for them. Besides, in all reality, they were more interested in the miracles than the message anyway.

Thankfully, this was not the case with everyone. While people were leaving in droves, The Lord turned to His inner-circle disciples and asked if they wished to leave also.

Now, Simon Peter, one of the twelve, does not maintain a flawless track record when it comes to saying and doing the right thing. But on this day he spoke with great wisdom. “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life.”

He and those who chose to stay that day didn’t allow their limited understanding to keep them from standing under the grace and truth residing in His words.

I estimate our day is no different. Though Christ is not present in physical form, His message and ministry still lives on. And to those who dare to believe, His glory is as visible as it was to those who walked with Him in the days of old.

The decision just has to be made to hold fast to His Word that is never-ending…instead of looking for His wonders that are often here today and gone tomorrow!

 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth. John 1:14 NKJV

Biblical Meditation: Isaiah 26:3 You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you.

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January 14 – The Sky’s the Limit

The Four Seasons

Often, the difference between a good idea and a great one is time and space. Take for instance, growing potatoes.

This vegetable is one of my favorites, especially the red ones. But my success in growing a good crop has not been all that great, to say the least. Truthfully, up until recently, I haven’t been willing to give much attention to the process.

I’ve just been content with buying them from the grocery store when I need them, even though the flavor is not what I want. But the other day I was visiting a good friend and caught a glimpse of what might be causing my potato dilemma. He has some cut “potato seeds” waiting to be planted and at the time of this writing, it’s early spring where I live.

Being a novice in the whole garden game, I had somehow missed the right time element for planting red potatoes. They require a certain amount of seasonal space to mature. Therefore, I can’t just throw them in the ground in May or June and expect a good harvest, no matter how much I hope and wish.

It seems to me that God has strategically placed time and space as governors on all that he has created. Everything from plants to people are guided and directed by seasons of time and space.

The natural “skies” God has set over us are there for our protection and provision. In Genesis, God used the expanse, i.e., the sky, to separate water from water in order to create a continuous canopy of moisture on the earth. This allowed all living things to receive just the right amount of water at just the right time.

Word to the wise today: Consult the Creator before you fly. Stay within the guidelines He gives you, let His words comfort, not control you. Don’t force the altitude; He already knows how high you can handle. Never forget, He wants to see you soar more than you do.

 Then God said, “Let there be firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters.” Thus God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament; and it was so. And God called the firmament Heaven. So the evening and the morning were the second day. Genesis 1:6-8 NKJV

 Biblical Meditation: Ecclesiastes 3:1 To everything there is a season, and a time for every matter or purpose under heaven…

January 2 – Waymaker God

Cross On The Wooden Background

Sometime ago an old wise man told a story that touched me deeply. It literally changed my life. He said growing up as a country boy in the South, his family was poor. He was the oldest of several brothers and sisters and his daddy had passed away before he reached young adulthood.

He was a good-sized lad and could handle most of the “manual” tasks for his mama. So he planned on staying home with her after he graduated high school and working. But his wise mama had told him as far back as he could remember that God promised her he had a special plan for her son and He would make a way for her boy to go to college.

And although there were many great men in his day that made tremendous impact on him and his community who never had formal education, his mama was adamant God’s plan for him involved college.

So the day came. She loaded him on the greyhound bus and sent him on his way with his lunch sack in hand. He had no money. He knew the power of his mother’s faith. He had watched her go into the kitchen with just one chicken from the backyard and feed him and all his brothers and sisters, with leftovers to spare. But somehow, this was different.

He said when he got off the bus, all he knew to do was just go get in the enrollment line. Now he had been a good student in high school. He was at the top of his class and he had been accepted to this college. But now it was time to enroll and pay tuition. As the line got shorter and he found himself close to the registrar, he felt a tap on his shoulder.

The gentleman looked stern as he asked him his name. Startled and convinced the man had come to remove him from the line because he had figured out he had no money, he reluctantly stated his name.

The man told him to get out of line. As he prepared to protest and plead his case, the gentleman stopped him dead in his tracks. “Your tuition has been paid in full. And there is a work study job awaiting your arrival. So, get out of line and come with me.”

Just like that, God made a way out of no way. And fortunately, I’ve now lived long enough and had an ample amount of my own “by faith bus rides.” I can confirm the old man’s mama was ‘right on the money.’ God is a WAYMAKER!

Today, if you are dry, desperate, confused, frustrated, afraid, discouraged, or alone, the prophet Isaiah beautifully solidifies this promise about God as he so long ago assured his people that God would make a way. He doesn’t forget His precious ones. Ever!

Isaiah 43:18-20

18 “But forget all that—it is nothing compared to what I am going to do. 19 For I am about to do something new. See, I have already begun! Do you not see it? I will make a pathway through the wilderness. I will create rivers in the dry wasteland. 20 The wild animals in the fields will thank me, the jackals and owls, too, for giving them water in the desert. Yes, I will make rivers in the dry wasteland so my chosen people can be refreshed. (NLT)

18 Do not [earnestly] remember the former things; neither consider the things of old. 19 Behold, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs forth; do you not perceive and know it and will you not give heed to it? I will even make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert. 20 The beasts of the field honor Me, the jackals and the ostriches, because I give waters in the wilderness and rivers in the desert, to give drink to My people, My chosen, (AMP)

18 Remember ye not the former things, neither consider the things of old. 19 Behold, I will do a new thing; now it shall spring forth; shall ye not know it? I will even make a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert. 20 The beast of the field shall honour me, the dragons and the owls: because I give waters in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert, to give drink to my people, my chosen.

Context of Meditation: Isaiah 43:1-21

January 1 – In His Name

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The other day, my wife had one of our kids pick up some supplies from town. Our town is small, so periodically we have to go into a nearby town to shop.

She didn’t have any cash on her, so she sent her credit card. Now that credit card functions like a check, in many ways, because it tells the business you are trading goods and services with that you have a source of supply that will cover the purchase price. And if you should by chance fail to do so, they have a means to collect your name and personal information.

My son or daughter was just the “representative.” They went in our name and on our behalf. They were in no way obligated to “afford” the items on our list. And consequently, they have never had a problem with helping run to town in our stead.

Today’s focal verses are a beautiful reminder of our role as representative of Heaven’s Kingdom on Planet Earth. God has already established His Will and His Way. And He made sure it is well documented as His Word in the Book of Testaments, The Bible.

Every single day of our new lives in His son Jesus are to be spent mastering this one thing…Kingdom Deliveries! We don’t write the rules or laws, we just represent the Lawmaker. In His Name is our purpose and thus, our place of provision.

Matt. 18:18-20

18 Verily I say unto you, Whatsoever ye bind on earth, shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever ye loose on earth, shall be loosed in heaven. 19 Again, verily I say unto you, that if two of you shall [a]agree in earth upon anything, whatsoever they shall desire, it shall be given them of my Father which is in heaven. 20 For where two or three are gathered together in my Name, there am I in the midst of them. (GNV)

18 “Assuredly, I say to you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.19 “Again I say[a] to you that if two of you agree on earth concerning anything that they ask, it will be done for them by My Father in heaven. 20 For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them.” (NKJV)

18Truly I tell you, whatever you forbid and declare to be improper and unlawful on earth must be [a]what is already forbidden in heaven, and whatever you permit and declare proper and lawful on earth must be [b]what is already permitted in heaven. 19Again I tell you, if two of you on earth agree (harmonize together, make a symphony together) about whatever [anything and [c]everything] they may ask, it will come to pass and be done for them by My Father in heaven. 20For wherever two or three are gathered (drawn together as My followers) in (into) My name, there I AM in the midst of them. (AMP)

Context of Meditation: Matthew 18:21-35