“I will catch up with him while he is weary and discouraged. He and his troops will panic…” 2 Samuel 17:2
David’s enemies were confident that they would be able to conquer him while catching him when he was both physically exhausted and emotionally spent. The circumstances were sad and extremely grim. This wasn’t the first time he had faced betrayal by the people closest to him, but the pain must have been intensely raw. The good news is, the Lord was his help and deliverance.
The lesson we can take away is this: our enemy, the devil, preys on the weak and discouraged soul. What can we do about it?
First, we can avoid weariness by getting enough sleep and rest. Follow Biblical rhythms of setting one day aside for rejuvenation and joyous relationships. The joy of the Lord is our strength in overcoming adversity.
Secondly we can avoid discouragement and depression by guarding our hearts and minds, and by disciplining our thoughts to center on subjects that follow this criteria:
“Dear brothers and sisters, one final thing: fix your thoughts on what is true and honorable and right and pure and lovely and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.” (Philippians 4:8)
That narrows the field considerably! Let’s pray to get the devil off our backs by staying strong and edified!
I thank you for your Word that gives me keys to live the abundant life you came to offer. Please teach me to live in health, making excellent choices that sustain my strength rather than drain it.
Give me wisdom in my thought life, Lord, so I will not fall into the pit of depression. When I am slipping, Lord, I will cry out to you. Correct my thoughts as I rein them in and give me grace to decide what to think about. I will meditate on your blessings and all the gifts you have given me. I will magnify You and not the problems, for the problems are so small in comparison to your greatness.
“Be serious and discipline yourselves for the sake of your prayers. Above all, maintain constant love for one another.” 1 Peter 4:7,8
Are you waiting for the answer to your prayers? Do lives depend on the answers to those prayers? Many times we have heard people say that it’s God that is waiting to answer. Well, according to Peter, I am the one that can be holding back the answer to my own prayers; my ability to walk in constant love for others is the litmus test for answered prayer.
Maintaining constant love truly requires discipline and daily practice. Thank God, Paul told us to, “Put on love,” meaning, I don’t have to drum it up myself. I can simply apply it to myself, putting it on like a garment loaned to me by God Himself, who is love. Before we get to the prayers we so desperately need to lay before our Father, let’s check our love tank, making sure that we keep it constantly full and flowing for everyone we meet, friend or foe.
You have promised to pour out your love in my heart through your Holy Spirit. I receive that love today. Please let it flow in, on, and over me. Then, Lord, help me to discipline myself to walk in love and to talk in loving tones to everyone I encounter in person, on the phone, and throughout my social media platforms. May I love from your source of perfect love! May I have mercy on those I don’t understand or agree with. Help me to see that I am so very often wrong in my assessments and perspectives. Please change my heart and make it like Yours. I will take this call to love seriously today, and I will make it my highest aim in life.
In Jesus’ Name Amen.
“Look beneath the surface so you can judge correctly.” John 7:24
“The Lord doesn’t see things the way you see them. People judge by outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” 1 Samuel 16:7b
Faith commits us to trust in God, not our physical senses. Not even the smartest, wisest, most astute philosopher on the planet can trust his own impressions. If we want to really understand what is going on in this world, we are going to have to rely on our faith to decipher it. We can’t trust our own perspective, nor anyone else’s. We must lean on God’s.
“Things are not what they appear.” God knew that when he set up this world. He created a world where we access the eternal through our faith. Faith doesn’t depend on what we perceive at face value. It depends on what God has said; His perspective is what counts.
I have so often been guilty of trusting my senses and making judgements based on my own clouded point of view. Please forgive me for leaning on my own understanding which simply cannot stand the test of time.
Lord, I want to seek your perspective on every issue I am facing. May I listen to you much more than I listen to my own hunches, my own senses, or the pundits’ perspectives. Teach me, talk with me, lead me.
Your will be done on earth as it is in Heaven.
Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not of this world.” (John 18:36)
I am only a foreigner in this land. (Psalm 119:19)
This political season has reminded us more than ever that the Kingdom of God and the kingdoms of this world don’t always dovetail nicely. Even in the midst of that tension, we can be secure by reminding ourselves of our true citizenship, our True Kingdom. While, we participate in the politics of this earthly kingdom, we don’t place all our hopes there. Our hopes as well as our sites are set on Heaven.
Still, we long for wisdom in the process, to know how to live out our faith in practical ways in this world – for example, which little dots to fill in on the ballot. Those little dots represent a great deal of power. Left hanging, “chads” can cause a stir…
This world is a confusing and disappointing place sometimes, particularly these days. Please, Lord, we ask that Your Kingdom would come to our kingdom, setting up righteousness, justice, and the force of your love that never fails.
Use me this day to enforce the precepts of your Kingdom in my own soul, at the very least…
May I speak the Truth, meditate on the Truth, and love the Truth with all my heart.
May I speak Love, meditate on Love, and demonstrate love with all my heart.
May I speak Your Word, meditate on Your Word, and live it everywhere I go.
I pray for my country and ask for your will to be done in this upcoming election. Please help us, Lord, and grant us wisdom to hear your voice as we cast our votes to the best of our ability.
In Jesus’ Name, Amen.