LET ME NOT GRUMBLE BUT HAVE THOUGHTS OF GOD

Morning

ABOVEEARTH

“And all the children of Israel murmured.”
Numbers 14:2

There are murmurers amongst Christians now, as there were in the camp of Israel of old. There are those who, when the rod falls, cry out against the afflictive dispensation. They ask, “Why am I thus afflicted? What have I done to be chastened in this manner?” A word with thee, O murmurer! Why shouldst thou murmur against the dispensations of thy heavenly Father? Can he treat thee more hardly than thou deservest? Consider what a rebel thou wast once, but he has pardoned thee! Surely, if he in his wisdom sees fit now to chasten thee, thou shouldst not complain. After all, art thou smitten as hardly as thy sins deserve? Consider the corruption which is in thy breast, and then wilt thou wonder that there needs so much of the rod to fetch it out? Weigh thyself, and discern how much dross is mingled with thy gold; and dost thou think the fire too hot to purge away so much dross as thou hast? Does not that proud rebellious spirit of thine prove that thy heart is not thoroughly sanctified? Are not those murmuring words contrary to the holy submissive nature of God’s children? Is not the correction needed? But if thou wilt murmur against the chastening, take heed, for it will go hard with murmurers. God always chastises his children twice, if they do not bear the first stroke patiently. But know one thing–“He doth not afflict willingly, nor grieve the children of men.” All his corrections are sent in love, to purify thee, and to draw thee nearer to himself. Surely it must help thee to bear the chastening with resignation if thou art able to recognize thy Father’s hand. For “whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons.” “Murmur not as some of them also murmured and were destroyed of the destroyer.”

Evening

“How precious also are thy thoughts unto me, O God.”
Psalm 139:17

Divine omniscience affords no comfort to the ungodly mind, but to the child of God it overflows with consolation. God is always thinking upon us, never turns aside his mind from us, has us always before his eyes; and this is precisely as we would have it, for it would be dreadful to exist for a moment beyond the observation of our heavenly Father. His thoughts are always tender, loving, wise, prudent, far-reaching, and they bring to us countless benefits: hence it is a choice delight to remember them. The Lord always did think upon his people: hence their election and the covenant of grace by which their salvation is secured; he always will think upon them: hence their final perseverance by which they shall be brought safely to their final rest. In all our wanderings the watchful glance of the Eternal Watcher is evermore fixed upon us–we never roam beyond the Shepherd’s eye. In our sorrows he observes us incessantly, and not a pang escapes him; in our toils he marks all our weariness, and writes in his book all the struggles of his faithful ones. These thoughts of the Lord encompass us in all our paths, and penetrate the innermost region of our being. Not a nerve or tissue, valve or vessel, of our bodily organization is uncared for; all the littles of our little world are thought upon by the great God.

Dear reader, is this precious to you? then hold to it. Never be led astray by those philosophic fools who preach up an impersonal God, and talk of self-existent, self-governing matter. The Lord liveth and thinketh upon us, this is a truth far too precious for us to be lightly robbed of it. The notice of a nobleman is valued so highly that he who has it counts his fortune made; but what is it to be thought of by the King of kings! If the Lord thinketh upon us, all is well, and we may rejoice evermore.

All rights belong to the collection of Charles Spurgeon(C)

 

 

SECURE ON MOUNT ZION

Morning

Remember the word unto thy servant, upon which thou hast caused me to hope.”
Psalm 119:49

Whatever your especial need may be, you may readily find some promise in the Bible suited to it. Are you faint and feeble because your way is rough and you are weary? Here is the promise–“He giveth power to the faint.” When you read such a promise, take it back to the great Promiser, and ask him to fulfil his own word. Are you seeking after Christ, and thirsting for closer communion with him? This promise shines like a star upon you–“Blessed are they that hunger and thirst after righteousness, for they shall be filled.” Take that promise to the throne continually; do not plead anything else, but go to God over and over again with this–“Lord, thou hast said it, do as thou hast said.” Are you distressed because of sin, and burdened with the heavy load of your iniquities? Listen to these words–“I, even I, am he that blotteth out thy transgressions, and will no more remember thy sins.” You have no merit of your own to plead why he should pardon you, but plead his written engagements and he will perform them. Are you afraid lest you should not be able to hold on to the end, lest, after having thought yourself a child of God, you should prove a castaway? If that is your state, take this word of grace to the throne and plead it: “The mountains may depart, and the hills may be removed, but the covenant of my love shall not depart from thee.” If you have lost the sweet sense of the Saviour‘s presence, and are seeking him with a sorrowful heart, remember the promises: “Return unto me, and I will return unto you;” “For a small moment have I forsaken thee, but with great mercies will I gather thee.” Banquet your faith upon God’s own word, and whatever your fears or wants, repair to the Bank of Faith with your Father’s note of hand, saying, “Remember the word unto thy servant, upon which thou hast caused me to hope.”

Evening

“All the house of Israel are impudent and hardhearted.”
Ezekiel 3:7

Are there no exceptions? No, not one. Even the favoured race are thus described. Are the best so bad?–then what must the worst be? Come, my heart, consider how far thou hast a share in this universal accusation, and while considering, be ready to take shame unto thyself wherein thou mayst have been guilty. The first charge is impudence, or hardness of forehead, a want of holy shame, an unhallowed boldness in evil. Before my conversion, I could sin and feel no compunction, hear of my guilt and yet remain unhumbled, and even confess my iniquity and manifest no inward humiliation on account of it. For a sinner to go to God’s house and pretend to pray to him and praise him argues a brazen-facedness of the worst kind! Alas! since the day of my new birth I have doubted my Lord to his face, murmured unblushingly in his presence, worshipped before him in a slovenly manner, and sinned without bewailing myself concerning it. If my forehead were not as an adamant, harder than flint, I should have far more holy fear, and a far deeper contrition of spirit. Woe is me, I am one of the impudent house of Israel. The second charge is hardheartedness, and I must not venture to plead innocent here. Once I had nothing but a heart of stone, and although through grace I now have a new and fleshy heart, much of my former obduracy remains. I am not affected by the death of Jesus as I ought to be; neither am I moved by the ruin of my fellow men, the wickedness of the times, the chastisement of my heavenly Father, and my own failures, as I should be. O that my heart would melt at the recital of my Saviour’s sufferings and death. Would to God I were rid of this nether millstone within me, this hateful body of death. Blessed be the name of the Lord, the disease is not incurable, the Saviour’s precious blood is the universal solvent, and me, even me, it will effectually soften, till my heart melts as wax before the fire.

All rights belong to the collection of Charles Spurgeon(C)

Secure as Mount Zion

Those who trust in the Lord are as secure as Mount Zion; they will not be defeated but will endure forever. Just as the mountains surround and protect Jerusalem, so the Lord surrounds and protects his people, both now and forever. 

Psalm 125:1-2 NLT

It is wise to break off the contemplation of enemies and dangers by crying out to God. Prayer is a good interruption of a catalogue of perils. 

Alexander Maclaren (1826-1910)

 

 

True Security

 

What does it mean to trust the Lord? It means looking to him as the source of our security and putting our faith in the grace, love, power, and protection of God when the inevitable pressures of life come. It means knowing as the psalmist did that the mountains surround Jerusalem, God himself surrounds and shields his people. When we trust the Lord, we don’t have to focus on the wicked and what they are doing or might do to us. We don’t have to rehash our own woes. Even though there are problems the size of mountains facing us, we can cry out to the Lord who created the mountains and is able to move them. As we focus on him and his truth, he will encourage our hearts and help us to claim the great promise of verse 2: The Lord will surround and protect his people, now and forever.

LORD, I put my trust in you today. You are my security and protection, my shield, my fortress, and my hiding place, and I praise you. When enemies surround me and troubles multiply, help me to remember that you are ever faithful and that you surround and protect me, both now and forever.

Adapted from The One Year® Book of Praying through the Bible by Cheri Fuller, Tyndale House Publishers (2003), entry for June 7.

Digging Deeper: read the new release of The Gates of Zion by Bodie and Brock Thoene (Tyndale, 2006), the first of The Zion Chronicles novels based on events surrounding Israel’s statehood in 1948.

 

Content is derived from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation and other publications of Tyndale Publishing House

 

God Gifted-Started Singing @ Age of Six on Britain’s Got Talent

English: British child singer Connie Talbot, a...

English: British child singer Connie Talbot, at the Olympic Studios (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

Three Little Birds

Three Little Birds (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

Let It Be – Connie Talbot with Young Voices Choir – O2 Arena London

 

 

<iframe width=”640″ height=”360″ src=”http://www.youtube.com/embed/WNOF_X3vc1A?feature=player_detailpage” frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen>

 

ENJOY

 

YOU’LL BE GLAD YOUR WATCHED! APRIL 27, 2013

Phil Wickham – At Your Name ( YAHWEH ) – Lakewood Church LIVE

“>

Starring Donny Osmond as Joseph. From the film version of ‘Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat’.
Credit: OfficialRUG

<iframe width=”640″ height=”360″ src=”http://www.youtube.com/embed/7N5NccUC-CE?feature=player_detailpage” frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen>

GOD BLESS

Lacking Nothing

I Shall Not Want

Psalm 23:1-6

The ordering of the Psalter is no accident. As English pastor and theologian Charles Haddon Spurgeon (1834-1892) observed, it is only after we have read My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? (Ps 22:1) that we come to “The LORD is my shepherd” (Ps 23:1).

Experience teaches us that I lack nothing cannot mean that we will always receive what we desire even if our wants are in keeping with God’s general principles. A man may long to become a missionary, only to be paralyzed in an automobile accident. A woman with wonderful potential as a Christian mother may remain infertile. And what about those desires to improve our lot in life? Many of God’s sheep, both at home and abroad, are hungry, naked ”even dying”at this very moment. The meaning of I lack nothing is that I will never lack anything necessary to my ultimate good ”which God has wrapped up with his own (cf. Ro 8:28,38-39).

The fact is that if this psalm had no valley in it (v. 4), it wouldn’t have any comfort either. When we pass through life’s valleys, we have the assurance that we will never lack anything required for our eternal well-being. The only reason a shepherd would guide his sheep into a dangerous valley would be to lead them through it to a better place (see Heb 11:16,40).

In his personal role as a real-life shepherd, Phillip W. Keller has reflected extensively on Psalm 23.   Following are extracts from his observations on Psalm 23:5:

In thinking about [the] statement You prepare a table before me  it is well to bear in mind that the sheep are approaching this high mountain country of the summer ranges. These are known as alplands or tablelands so much sought after by the sheepmen.

In some of the finest sheep country of the world, especially in the Western United States and Southern Europe, the high plateau of the sheep ranges are always referred to as mesasâ ”the Spanish word for tables.

So it may be seen that what David referred to as a table was actually the entire high summer range. Though these  mesas❠may have been remote and hard to reach, the energetic and aggressive sheep owner takes the time and trouble to ready them for the arrival of his flocks.

It is not always apparent to us what tremendous personal cost it has been for Christ to prepare the table for His own. Just as the lonely, personal privation of the sheepman who prepares the summer range for his stock entails a sacrifice, so the lonely agony of Gethsemane, of Pilateâ’s hall, of Calvary, have cost my Master much.

Think About It: 

  • What does this beloved psalm mean to you personally?
  • What do you feel you lack that you need to turn over to God’s keeping?
  • What does the sacrifice of Jesus teach you about God’s care for you?

Pray About It:

Lord, you are my shepherd. I have everything I need. You give me peace and guide me to do right. Even when bad things happen, I will not be afraid because you are there beside me. Thank you for all you give me.

 

PREPARE THYSELF, TAKE LORD’S SUPPER AND WATCH FOR HIS RETURN

Morning

“This do in remembrance of me.”
1 Corinthians 11:24

It seems then, that Christians may forget Christ! There could be no need for this loving exhortation, if there were not a fearful supposition that our memories might prove treacherous. Nor is this a bare supposition: it is, alas! too well confirmed in our experience, not as a possibility, but as a lamentable fact. It appears almost impossible that those who have been redeemed by the blood of the dying Lamb, and loved with an everlasting love by the eternal Son of God, should forget that gracious Saviour; but, if startling to the ear, it is, alas! too apparent to the eye to allow us to deny the crime. Forget him who never forgot us! Forget him who poured his blood forth for our sins! Forget him who loved us even to the death! Can it be possible? Yes, it is not only possible, but conscience confesses that it is too sadly a fault with all of us, that we suffer him to be as a wayfaring man tarrying but for a night. He whom we should make the abiding tenant of our memories is but a visitor therein. The cross where one would think that memory would linger, and unmindfulness would be an unknown intruder, is desecrated by the feet of forgetfulness. Does not your conscience say that this is true? Do you not find yourselves forgetful of Jesus? Some creature steals away your heart, and you are unmindful of him upon whom your affection ought to be set. Some earthly business engrosses your attention when you should fix your eye steadily upon the cross. It is the incessant turmoil of the world, the constant attraction of earthly things which takes away the soul from Christ. While memory too well preserves a poisonous weed, it suffereth the rose of Sharon to wither. Let us charge ourselves to bind a heavenly forget-me-not about our hearts for Jesus our Beloved, and, whatever else we let slip, let us hold fast to him.

Evening

“Blessed is he that watcheth.”
Revelation 16:15

“We die daily,” said the apostle. This was the life of the early Christians; they went everywhere with their lives in their hands. We are not in this day called to pass through the same fearful persecutions: if we were, the Lord would give us grace to bear the test; but the tests of Christian life, at the present moment, though outwardly not so terrible, are yet more likely to overcome us than even those of the fiery age. We have to bear the sneer of the world–that is little; its blandishments, its soft words, its oily speeches, its fawning, its hypocrisy, are far worse. Our danger is lest we grow rich and become proud, lest we give ourselves up to the fashions of this present evil world, and lose our faith. Or if wealth be not the trial, worldly care is quite as mischievous. If we cannot be torn in pieces by the roaring lion, if we may be hugged to death by the bear, the devil little cares which it is, so long as he destroys our love to Christ, and our confidence in him. I fear me that the Christian church is far more likely to lose her integrity in these soft and silken days than in those rougher times. We must be awake now, for we traverse the enchanted ground, and are most likely to fall asleep to our own undoing, unless our faith in Jesus be a reality, and our love to Jesus a vehement flame. Many in these days of easy profession are likely to prove tares, and not wheat; hypocrites with fair masks on their faces, but not the true-born children of the living God. Christian, do not think that these are times in which you can dispense with watchfulness or with holy ardour; you need these things more than ever, and may God the eternal Spirit display his omnipotence in you, that you may be able to say, in all these softer things, as well as in the rougher, “We are more than conquerors through him that loved us.”

All rights belong to the collections of charles Spurgeon(C)

GUARD YOUR HEART

The Heart Affects Everything

Above all else, guard your heart, for it affects everything you do. 

Proverbs 4:23 NLT

Let us learn to cast our hearts into God

 

Guard the inside

 

If you’re typical, you think of guarding your heart in terms of keeping things out. Corruption, false ideas, temptations — all are to be held at arm’s length, never to be allowed in the inner depths of your affections. But there’s another side to this vigilance. We are to keep things in. In fact, if we can master that, the corruptions and temptations will often take care of themselves.

Think about it: The things that can assail a heart from the outside are innumerable, far too overwhelming to manage. But the things we are told to keep within — the spirit of Jesus, the humility and gentleness, the servanthood and sacrifice, the worship and thankfulness — these are one Spirit. Most religions tell us to avoid the bad; God tells us to embrace Him. We are better equipped to focus on His character than on the enemy’s devices. Nowhere are we told to live against the sinful nature and hope that the Spirit will show up. We’re told to live by the Spirit and expect the sinful nature to have no power. We often get confused about that.

Too many Christians guard the way into their hearts to keep things out. That may be appropriate at times, but try a different approach. Guard the way out. Stand at the inside of the gate, and be careful about what may be leaving. Once in a while, we get a life-altering glimpse of true worship. By all means, keep it in! From time to time, we’ll see a picture of true servanthood. Don’t let that picture go! Hold on to these things! Treasuring the wellspring that God has birthed in your heart will leave little room for those corruptions you once obsessed over. And the wellspring is a much more pleasant preoccupation.

Adapted from The One Year® Walk with God Devotional by Chris Tiegreen, Tyndale House Publishers (2004), entry for May 10.

 

Content is derived from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation and other publications of Tyndale Publishing House