Thursday, December 20, 2007

The secret of your strength

My brain is getting back into gear spiritually after waking up yesterday and reading my devotional passages. I said yesterday I'd blog about it, and here are a few highlights:

First I began reading I Corinthians 10 where it was talking about the Israelites and learning from the mistakes they made. Well interestingly enough I'm teaching on this in my Sunday School class and have been on this now for several months. Just when you think you know just about everything on a subject...

God was once again reminding me of the importance of learning from all of their hard learned life lessons. Here are several excerpts from chapter 10:

"Remember our history, friends, and be warned..."

"The same thing could happen to us...we must be on guard so that we never get caught up in wanting our own way as they did..."

"These are all warning markers - DANGER! - in our history books, written down so that we don't repeat their mistakes. Our positions in the story are parallel - they at the beginning, and we at the end - and we are just as capable of messing it up as they were..."

"Forget about self confidence. It's useless. Cultivate God-confidence..."

"All you need to remember is that God will never let you down; he'll never
let you be pushed past your limit. He'll always be there to help you come through it..." (The Message)

Then I opened up "Come Away My Beloved" and here was yesterday's gem. Interesting that it was about singing since that's the last thing I've wanted to do for quite a while... here are just a few excerpts:

"Remember that I am in the midst of you when you praise Me. Never let any kind of anxiety crowd out your praise. Do not be concerned for My reputation. I have withstood many storms and I will survive this one. Human strivings are like the waters around Gibraltar. They have beat upon the rock, but they have not changed it. I am not disturbed, and I forbid you to be anxious. for anxiety produces tension, and tension erodes joy, and when joy is gone, victory is lost, faith is weakened and spontaneity is destroyed. The spirit falls ill. The salt has lost it's flavor. It's savor is a saver. What can I use to preserve My work in your midst if you lose your joy? Rejoice always, said the apostle Paul, and again I say, rejoice. Let your stability be apparent to all, for truly the coming of the Lord is near. Prepare yourself and be strong, for it is the Lord who upholds you and He it is who gives you the victory. Sing my children, and let the shout of praise be heard for the Lord is mighty and His name is glorious."

I have honestly let a whole lot of things crowd out my praise....and my joy. You know the joy of the Lord is our STRENGTH - that's what the Word of God says. I guess that explains why I have been feeling so incredibly weak.

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