April 19 – Knowing His Plan

Things happen and we react. Maybe we’re primed for a response that is not the right response or time to act. When we do, we often learn quickly of our overreach just as Peter does the night Jesus is arrested. Jesus had just gone three torturous rounds in prayer about the cup he was facing. Now Jesus has to ask Peter if he was trying to divert God’s plan. Impetuous Simon Peter, of course—wielding a sword! Peter was no stranger to jumping right in with both feet. He had jumped out of the boat attempting to walk on water to Christ. He had spoken his mind thinking to rebuke Christ. He had offered to lay down his life for Christ and swore he would be true, always. But shortly after stepping up to defend Jesus, fear would grip Peter and he would deny even knowing Him. Our  impatience might push us to interfere with what God had declared, with His  plans. What God has declared; He will do. Let’s learn to put away our figurative swords. Let’s trust God’s plan as we understand it and, wait on His timing. Acting on God’s command is how we serve Him best.

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March 7 – At The Cross

“When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to his mother, “Woman, behold, your son!”  Then he said to the disciple, “Behold, your mother!” And from that hour the disciple took her to his own home.” – John 19:26-27 (ESV)

How many people were standing around observing the crucifixion of Jesus Christ and the two criminals? Some were mocking, others overwhelmed with grief. From Matthew and Mark, we know there was a good number. John was the only disciple whose presence was noted. Jesus’ mother was there with John and other women who loved and followed Jesus to the cross. In midst great pain and suffering, Jesus felt Mary’s sorrow. He honored His mother by acknowledging and entrusting her into the care of John, “The disciple who He loved,” was the way John always identified himself in the Gospel he wrote.. Jesus, as first-born of the family, did not give the responsibility of caring for His mother to His half-brothers because they were not sympathetic to His ministry nor did they yet believe in Him. In stark contrast with the cruelty and indifference of the soldiers, this group of women watched with heart-broken love and grief. The promise we find in today’s verse was one given to Mary many years before. The anguish of Jesus’ mother fulfilled the prophecy of Simeon: “A sword will pierce your own soul too.” It was a promise of Jesus’ mission. (Luke 2:35). . 

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November 24 – Going Deeper than Deep

“For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” Hebrews 4:12 (ESV )

The word of God is our only hope. The good news of God’s promises and the warnings of his judgment in the Bible are sharp. They are alive and active enough to drill down to the bottom of our heart and show us that the lies of sin are indeed lies. The things we do and justify doing based on our desires and fears are not capable of reaching our need and making things right. Dishonesty and false teaching can be countered by the word of God. The promises in God’s Word is like opening the windows letting in the bright morning sunlight on the roaches of sin cloaked as satisfying pleasures in our hearts. God has given you us good news, his promises, his word to protect us from the deep deceptions of sin that try to harden your heart and lure it away from God. Take heart because the word of God is living, active and sharper than any two-edged sword. it will go deeper than any deception of sin has ever gone. It will reveal what is truly valuable and what is truly worth trusting and loving.

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