I’ll Turn Every Blessing Into Praise

I’ll Turn Every Blessing Into Praise

Jesus followers—and even people who are unsure of God—often respond to tragedy by first appealing to God for help and then questioning His intentions. Either way, difficulty has a way of making us aware of our dependence on God. In these moments when He is all we have, hopefully we can realize that He is all we need.

For Job of the Bible, this was no mental exercise. Job actually experienced the loss of everything he held most dear in life. How did he respond? His book is where we get the phrase, “blessed be the name of the Lord!”

In both trial and blessing, a grateful heart returns praise to God. When we fail to praise God for His blessings, we make fertile soil for poisonous seeds of pride in our hearts. Ideas like, “I deserve this, I earned this, and I did this,” begin to take root and overshadow God’s providential work in our lives. When we instead return God’s blessings as praise, we make fertile soil for God to do abundantly more than we could ever ask or imagine.

WHY WEAR A VEIL?

THOUGHT:
Moses went up the mountain to get the Ten Commandments from God and when he came down his face was glowing because he had been in the presence of God. The whole community were afraid to come near Moses because his face was glowing, so he put a veil over his face to hide the glowing, then the people were comfortable to come close.

There is something wonderful and powerful about a person who spends time in the presence of God. They don’t even need to tell us they spend time with God. We are all able to see it. People change in God’s presence. You cannot hang out with God and stay the same.
Moses needed a veil because the people were afraid to come close. Moses could not help anybody if he could not get close to them.

When I first became a Christian, I think my zeal and passion may have been a little too strong for some people. I needed help turning down my dial. After all, what point is there in having a public passion that scares all my family and friends away? I need to maintain a strong private passion but develop a balanced public passion so people can get close.

TIME TO THINK:
Is my passion driving people away?
How can I stay privately passionate but change my public passion so people can see my friendship with God?

PRAYER:
Father, I long to be in your presence but I don’t want my passion for You to somehow make other people not want to come near me. Lord, please help me to live with a spiritual strength that makes others more interested in You. Amen.

CHANGED IN GOD’S PRESENCE

CHANGED IN GOD’S PRESENCE

THOUGHT:
Yesterday we read in Rom 12:2 “Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out.
So many of us try changing things from the outside first. I guess these are the obvious changes we need to make. The bible gives us great advice for this Christian journey – fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out.”

It didn’t take me long to work out that God changes us from the inside first. I know it doesn’t always happen as quick on the inside but it seems to last longer. Maybe it’s because of the prayerful conversations we have with God over the areas that need changing?

We don’t have to wait until Sunday to be in God’s presence. We can enter His presence at any moment of any day. I love finding a place where I can spend time with God. A place where I know I won’t be distracted. Some place people won’t ask me questions. I call this my secret place. It’s probably not a secret place to everyone else – could be the front steps – but God and I know it’s a place we meet and spend time together.

TIME TO THINK:
Do you have a secret place?
How often do you spend time in God’s presence?

PRAYER:
Father, I steady my heart and I quiet my soul because I want to say I love You and I need You. Help me find places where we can meet together. Help me enter Your presence even if I can’t get to that place. Thank you that You dwell in me and will never leave me.
Amen.

A True Love

How to UNCOVER God’s Word:

ASK – God to connect with you here. In prayer, start by slowing down, inviting God to be present. Begin with focus and openness to see what God has for you.

READ – the selected section of Scripture slowly. Take note of the words and phrases that intrigue you, reading them a second time if necessary.

REFLECT – on what grabs you. What connections do you see at this point in your life? How might God be speaking to you through these words? Stop long enough to let this take root and thank God for engaging you.

RESPOND – to the Scripture. Speak directly to God about what’s on your mind and heart. Look for ways to live out what you’ve uncovered – individually and with your church. And look for ways to bring what you have discovered to others.

Colossians 3:1 ESV
If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God.
Colossians 3:4-5 ESV
When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.
Put to death therefore what is earthly in you: sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.

A Faithful Love

How to UNCOVER God’s Word:

ASK – God to connect with you here. In prayer, start by slowing down, inviting God to be present. Begin with focus and openness to see what God has for you.

READ – the selected section of Scripture slowly. Take note of the words and phrases that intrigue you, reading them a second time if necessary.

REFLECT – on what grabs you. What connections do you see at this point in your life? How might God be speaking to you through these words? Stop long enough to let this take root and thank God for engaging you.

RESPOND – to the Scripture. Speak directly to God about what’s on your mind and heart. Look for ways to live out what you’ve uncovered – individually and with your church. And look for ways to bring what you have discovered to others.

2 Corinthians 6:6-7 ESV
by purity, knowledge, patience, kindness, the Holy Spirit, genuine love; by truthful speech, and the power of God; with the weapons of righteousness for the right hand and for the left;

…in love, in faith, in purity.

How to UNCOVER God’s Word:

ASK – God to connect with you here. In prayer, start by slowing down, inviting God to be present. Begin with focus and openness to see what God has for you.

READ – the selected section of Scripture slowly. Take note of the words and phrases that intrigue you, reading them a second time if necessary.

REFLECT – on what grabs you. What connections do you see at this point in your life? How might God be speaking to you through these words? Stop long enough to let this take root and thank God for engaging you.

RESPOND – to the Scripture. Speak directly to God about what’s on your mind and heart. Look for ways to live out what you’ve uncovered – individually and with your church. And look for ways to bring what you have discovered to others.

1 Timothy 4:11-12 ESV
11 Command and teach these things. 12 Let no one despise you for your youth, but set the believers an example in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity.

A Precious Love

How to UNCOVER God’s Word:

ASK – God to connect with you here. In prayer, start by slowing down, inviting God to be present. Begin with focus and openness to see what God has for you.

READ – the selected section of Scripture slowly. Take note of the words and phrases that intrigue you, reading them a second time if necessary.

REFLECT – on what grabs you. What connections do you see at this point in your life? How might God be speaking to you through these words? Stop long enough to let this take root and thank God for engaging you.

RESPOND – to the Scripture. Speak directly to God about what’s on your mind and heart. Look for ways to live out what you’ve uncovered – individually and with your church. And look for ways to bring what you have discovered to others.

1 Peter 1:14-16 ESV
14 As obedient children, do not be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance, 15 but as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, 16 since it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.”

A Healthy Love

How to UNCOVER God’s Word:

ASK – God to connect with you here. In prayer, start by slowing down, inviting God to be present. Begin with focus and openness to see what God has for you.

READ – the selected section of Scripture slowly. Take note of the words and phrases that intrigue you, reading them a second time if necessary.

REFLECT – on what grabs you. What connections do you see at this point in your life? How might God be speaking to you through these words? Stop long enough to let this take root and thank God for engaging you.

RESPOND – to the Scripture. Speak directly to God about what’s on your mind and heart. Look for ways to live out what you’ve uncovered – individually and with your church. And look for ways to bring what you have discovered to others.

1 Corinthians 6:18-20 ESV
18 Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body. 19 Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, 20 for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.

A Lasting Love

How to UNCOVER God’s Word:

ASK – God to connect with you here. In prayer, start by slowing down, inviting God to be present. Begin with focus and openness to see what God has for you.

READ – the selected section of Scripture slowly. Take note of the words and phrases that intrigue you, reading them a second time if necessary.

REFLECT – on what grabs you. What connections do you see at this point in your life? How might God be speaking to you through these words? Stop long enough to let this take root and thank God for engaging you.

RESPOND – to the Scripture. Speak directly to God about what’s on your mind and heart. Look for ways to live out what you’ve uncovered – individually and with your church. And look for ways to bring what you have discovered to others.

1 Thessalonians 4:3 ESV
For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you abstain from sexual immorality;