Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Devotional Snapshot 76 - Sovereignty

"...if there is a God in heaven, there is no such thing as mere coincidence, not even in the smallest affairs of life." Desiring God John Piper

Ecclesiastes 7:14 "In the day pf prosperity be joyful, but in the day of adversity consider: surely God has appointed the one as well as the other, so that man can find out nothing that will come after him."

Webster's dictionary defines sovereignty as supreme power - unlimited - absolute - autonomous - independent.

The Hebrew for sovereignty is Kol meaning: anyone, anything, anywhere, everyone, everything, everyway, everyman, whatever, whenever, wherever, whoever, forever

1Chronicles 29:11-12 "Yours, O Lord, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the majesty and the splendor, for everything in heaven and earth is Yours. Yours, O Lord, is the kingdom; You are exalted as head over all. Wealth and honor come from You; You are the ruler of all things. In Your hands are strength and power to exalt and give strength to all."

The sovereignty of God is a sweet message to the parents, to the childless, to the young, to the old, to the poor, to the rich. It teaches us trust. He's here. He's in charge. He has a plan. It will come to pass inspite of me. I can not thwart His hand. He uses all things to ultimately glorify Him and for our good. Even my mistakes, even my children's mistakes, even others' mistakes. Because of His sovereignty we can get over it and move on. We can forgive. He forgives us. We can start fresh today. His mercies are new every morning. No failure is complete because Our God reigns..not me, not my tantruming 2 year old, not my stubborn teen, not our president, not Al Kaida.

Our God reigns. I can be content because He's in control and all that He does is good. Even the murdering chaos in the streets, even the threat of war, even the bully at school, does not take away from the sure word that Our God is in heaven and He does all that He pleases. The sovereignty of God teaches me that I don't have to fix everything...He does. That I don't have to have all the answers...He does. I don't have to figure out the future...He does.

"All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be." Psalm 139:16

When you have a great day, praise God He ordained it and gave it to you. When you have a horrible day, ask for His forgiveness and help and move on.. For this day He gave You also.

Devotional Snapshot 75 - Blame

"If I feel bitterly towards those who condemn me, as it seems to me, unjustly, forgetting that if they knew me as I know myself they would condemn me much more, then I know nothing of Calvary love." Amy Carmichael...missionary to India

"If the praise of man elates me and his blame depresses me; if I cannot rest under misunderstanding without defending myself; if I love to be loved more than to love, to be served more than to serve, then I know nothing of Calvary love." Amy Carmichael

"Also do not take to heart everything people say, lest you hear your servant cursing you. For many times, also your own heart has known that even you have cursed others." Ecclesiastes 7: 21,22

My defenses went up when someone pointed out that I was not perfect! Yesterday I overlooked something I should have attended to, today I was micromanaging to the point that I hurt the feelings of another.

The blame depressed me and I inwardly was defending myself and feeling anger towards my accuser. But just a few days ago I was complimented and I basked in the warm feelings of being "good enough". I inwardly agreed that their good estimation of me was accurate, for I sometimes I have that good thought about myself when no one is looking. Its nice to know others see it, too.

The scripture says in Romans 12:3 "...Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of your self with sober judgment..."

Don't take to heart everything people say. What good advice from the Lord! Neither praise nor blame should move me from my sober estimation of who I am before the living God. I am a horrible sinner who daily refuses to trust and follow my Savior. I deserve condemnation and if people knew me as God does they would rightfully have far more complaints than I ever get. If I feel bitter to those who even unjustly condemn me then as Amy says, "I know nothing of Calvary love."

And if I am elated by praise forgetting it is only God who enables me to do one right thing. And that left totally to myself I will always choose to be selfish then "I know nothing of Calvary love."

How do you do with praise or blame? Lets pray for each other today that none of it moves us except to love and serve our Savior more.