30 Days of Prayer and Praise–20!

30 Days of Prayer and Praise–20!

Blessed is the one who does not walk in step with the wicked or stand in the way that sinners take or sit in the company of mockers, but whose delight is in the law of the LORD, and who meditates on his law day and night. That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither— whatever they do prospers. Not so the wicked! They are like chaff that the wind blows away. Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the assembly of the righteous. For the LORD watches over the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked leads to destruction. Psalm 1 NIV

Day Twenty

Lord Jesus,

You know our hearts and our thoughts before we think them. We stand ready for correction and renewing of our spirits by You for anything that is not of You. Lord, we take nothing for granted and will always seek You early–while You may be found–for wisdom and direction in all things so our living for You is not in vain.

We know that You know the wicked from the righteous and we entreat You to keep the righteous covered–from all the destructive devices the enemy uses in opposition of You.

We thank You for our faith that will not waver under the attack of naysayers and those who plot to do evil. We thank You for Your Word–we use as both a shield and sword against the attacks of the wicked. We thank You for the courage and strength and determination to keep our feet moving–doing good and not evil. We are grateful for Your love and wisdom and direction and our hope remains in You, not man or woman.

And even as the wicked–continue to plot the downfall of those who love You--we continue to praise You for Your goodness and mercy that will follow us all the days of our lives. We continue to lift our hands and our voices–magnifying You, O God–for all You will accomplish in the earth through those who love You and obey Your Word. We continue to stand up and speak out against injustice and wrongdoing against those who have no voice and are ignored.

We thank You for victory in every area of our lives and that You will allow us to see the humiliation of all who are evil and plot evil against those who love You.

In Jesus’ name we pray and thank You, Amen!

On The Journey–Samek!

I hate the double-minded,
But I love Your law.

You are my hiding place and my shield;
I hope in Your word.

Depart from me, you evildoers,
For I will keep the commandments of my God!

Uphold me according to Your word, that I may live;
And do not let me be ashamed of my hope.

Hold me up, and I shall be safe,
And I shall observe Your statutes continually.

You reject all those who stray from Your statutes,
For their deceit is falsehood.

You put away all the wicked of the earth like dross;
Therefore I love Your testimonies.

My flesh trembles for fear of You,
And I am afraid of Your judgments.

The 15th letter (Samech in the KJV) and stanza–man versus God–what men do and what God does.

The writer (and rightfully so) expresses his feelings about double-minded people–those who are on one side of the fence one day and then switch–at will to the other side. This is like politicians–who proclaim to belong to one party adamantly and then switch to the other. James tells us, “A double-minded person is unstable in all their ways.” I think most of can see the waffling and teetering between the points of thought of the political candidates now. I’m with the writer on this one–double-minded people cannot be trusted.

However, I wonder if when we’re singing our praises to God or even just talking to Him, if we would be better off, not spending so much time talking about those who do wrong. It’s not like God doesn’t see them or know what they do.

And then there is the arrogance–implied in almost every stanza–“Look at what they do God, but I don’t do those things.” The writer is constantly telling God how much he loves His laws and His Word, but do we really need to “say” we love His Word or should we just “live” His Word?

Some may not agree with my conclusions and that’s perfectly fine. I would like to get into meaningful dialogue with those who truly want to understand and live God’s Word before Him.

In some parts of his song, it would appear that he is almost blaming God when he gets into trouble. If his hopes are dashed–it’s God’s fault? Since God honors our free-will choices (we have to accept the consequences of those choices), it would seem to be that it is not God we need to seek to keep our hopes in Him from being shattered, but we need to seek Him in making our choices.

Now, I realize that we are now living in the 21st century and most of us have a wider depth of knowledge than the writer had at his disposal, but have we changed the way we do things–in particular–in how we talk to God?  The earth is full of wickedness, but do we need to detail all their ways or just pray that all the wicked and evildoers will allow God into their hearts?

I’m not trying to make light of the world’s plight, but seeking understanding so I can be a better representative of who God is, and not need to have me in the spotlight.

Lord, help us to hear You clearly and to obey all You desire us to do and to do it all to Your glory for there is none like You!

 

 

The Person Who Prospers!

Blessed is the one who does not walk in step with the wicked or stand in the way that sinners take or sit in the company of mockers, but whose delight is in the law of the Lord, and who meditates on His law day and night. That person is like a tree planted by streams of water,which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither–whatever they do prospers. (Psalm 1:1-3)

One of the insults hurled at any many televangelists is that they are “fleecing” people and misleading them with their prosperity messages. Well, I cannot speak for all of them, in fact I cannot speak for any of them, but I do know–the message of prosperity and how to accomplish it–is found in The Word and as long as they are preaching and teaching The Word, I find no fault with them.

When I listen to those who do find fault with anyone preaching about prosperity (and everything else in The Word), observation of those who are complaining are those who are barely surviving–in their personal life and in their church life. For it is envy that prompts their animosity towards others who dare to say anything about prosperity. And it is envy that clogs up their ears and blinds their eyes when they do not hear those they preach against–also teach obeying God’s Word, totally. They do not hear the message of repentance, love, and obedience for they have closed their minds to hearing the “whole matter” and judge those things they do not understand.

It is not a sin for God’s children to prosper and when we are obedient to His Word–it is a promise to us–that we should prosper in everything we do. What does it mean to prosper–when we obey? We end up having more than enough–for our needs and to help others.

Now we know that the wicked also prosper and we only have to look at the events occurring in the world to see how. The drug kings–both legal and illegal–prosper when they sell their wares. The illegal drugs keep people dependent and poor, committing criminal acts to support their habits. The legal pharmacies are just as bad when they overprice medicines needed and end up scamming insurance companies and leaving the elderly making choices between eating and taking their medicine. We see the wicked in high places of authority, making deals with the devil that ultimately create chaos and disaster for others. We see the wicked in families and churches who say one thing, but live a lie–scamming their families, neighbors and friends–trying to make themselves to be something when they are not. But God has a solution for the wicked and their wealth–it is laid up for the righteous–those who obey God no matter what.

But then the Word also says, “Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers.” (3 John 1:3 NKJV). So now, we see that prosperity “in all things” is God’s desire for us–in our finances, our health as long as our soul–our will to obey Him in all things–prospers.

When people complain about the prosperity of those who preach and teach the Gospel, I’m led to believe that they did not believe God from the beginning–of the Word. Throughout the bible, we find promises of prosperity (along with repentance and obedience). One of my favorites is Joshua 1:7,8 and then there is the entire list of things that are ours when we obey found in Deuteronomy 28 as well as the curses for disobedience. It’s all in there.

The bottom line is this–we should not be “best buds” with those who deliberately live in opposition to God’s Word or hang out with them unless it is an effort to be a witness to them about God’s goodness. And we most certainly should not take up their habits, but be strong and courageous in obeying God’s Word and stand back and see how He causes us to prosper in all we do that honors Him. That is the person who shall prosper in all things–when they are living The Word–for all to see.

Who’s Watching Over You?

The LORD watches over all who love him, but all the wicked he will destroy. Psalm 145:20

Who are the wicked?

The wicked are those who refuse to acknowledge God and certainly won’t live according to His principles.

The wicked see no wrong in doing anything that appeals to their flesh.

The wicked see no wrong in doing anything that makes them look superior to others.

The wicked have no conscience and therefore, they see no wrong in anything they do.

The wicked have no heart to love, just a soulless void that can only be filled with hate.

The wicked care nothing for others and enjoy the plights of the poor.

The wicked do not even honor their own; when one falls into depravity the rest look on with envy and jealous, never mindful of the end results.

So who watches over the wicked? The sworn enemy of God is their overseer and he delights in their depraved thoughts and actions and when one falls  to the bottom of the pit of pitiful, the enemy laughs and moves on to the next one—who doesn’t have a clue or a spine. These are the wicked.

But the Lord watches over those who love Him and even when it seems like one of us is about to fall, an angel by direction of Love swoops in makes sure we do not utterly fall. Those who love God acknowledge Him, praise Him, worship Him and most importantly—obey Him. We obey by loving others—even when they are unlovable and cannot return the love. We love each other enough to respect and honor one another. We love each other enough to be considerate of each other. We love each other enough to tell each other the truth of any matter. We love each other enough to give sound advice and direction in all things. We love each other enough to hurt when one of us hurts, to rejoice when another rejoices and to comfort those who are grieving. Love never takes pleasure in the injustices that many suffer at the hands of a few.

The wicked are not so—they love to see injustice prevail over those who cannot stand for righteousness on their own. And God knows—those who are His and He gives strength to weak, and rest to the weary. He give courageous where there was none and determination to fight through to the end. He gives us boldness that overrides the boldness of the enemy and puts him to shame. He gives us hope—that we will endure to continue the journey upon which God has started us. He gives us love when we were unlovable and forgiveness for our sins. His grace and mercy shall surely follow us all the days of our lives!

What then will follow the wicked?

Who is watching over you and guiding your thoughts?