Monthly Archives: February 2017

God’s Will, Spiritual Wisdom and Being Fruitful

For this reason we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; that you may have a walk worthy of the LORD, fully pleasing Him, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God. – Colossians 1:9-10 NKJV

At first glance, the Bible can seem overwhelming.  It’s not just one “book” but a collection of 66 books written by about 40 authors over a period of 1,500 years.  Just the sheer size of even a simple Bible, without any commentary notes, can run over 1,000 pages.  In some ways it isn’t surprising when people shy away from Bible reading and feel it’s best to leave Bible study into the hands of experts and only pull out a few well known passages like Psalm 23 at appropriate times.  That is however, quite unfortunate.

I think God wants you to be in His Word and He wants you to grow and become fruitful by gaining spiritual wisdom.

The Apostle Paul opens his epistle or “letter” to those who lived in Colosse (a small city in Asia Minor) with this great prayer from verse 9 through 12.  Here is a big thing to remember about Paul and this city;  we have no record of Paul ever visiting the town.  The Book of Acts does not record any activity of Paul in Colosse.  Yet he feels compelled to write this letter to a group of people he never met and in doing so, offers a wonderful prayer for them.

There are many things one can discover in these few verses of Colossians, but I wanted to dwell on one point.  God wants you to be spiritually wise.

Notice how he prays in verse 9 for them to be “filled with the knowledge of His will in all spiritual understanding.”  He indicates this knowledge will result in having a “walk worthy of the LORD, fully pleasing Him.”  God wanted these people to know His will and thereby gain spiritual understanding, resulting in a life change that would be pleasing to the LORD.   He wanted that for the people of 1st century Colosse and He wants that for you too!

He wants you to grown in spiritual wisdom.  He wants you to have a worthy walk and to be fruitful.  He does this through His Word.

This prayer in Colossians applies to you.  You can pray this for yourself and know, God will answer this.  You will grow in Him and grow in spiritual wisdom when you seek Him through His Word.

You can always pray this prayer…..Open my eyes, that I might see wondrous things from Your Law  – Psalm 119:18.  God will grant that request every time someone comes to Him truly wanting to know God’s Word.  God wants you to know Him, know His will and grow in wisdom.  He wants you to be fruitful and it all starts by being in His Word.

Blessings My Friend!

-jm

My book on Psalm 119, Our Most Valuable Treasure, is now available on Amazon! For a limited time, the price has been reduced to $8.99.

One final request….. if you enjoy my periodic posts, would you please share a link to my blog and/or the book via Amazon on your personal Facebook page?  I would greatly appreciate it!

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Our Shelter, Our Strong Tower, Our Home

You have been a shelter for me and a strong tower from the enemy.  I will abide in Your tabernacle forever; I will trust in the shelter of Your wings.- Psalm 61:3-4 NKJV

Home is a familiar and comforting word for many people.  Where we call “home” often brings to mind times with our family, possibly times celebrating a holiday or birthday.  Or maybe it’s just a warm, comfortable feeling and memories of days long gone.

In Psalm 61, David uses four different words to describe his residence or dwelling in God.  In verse 3, he claims God is his “shelter” and “strong tower.”  This term here for shelter means “place of hope” while the words “strong tower” brings to mind some sort of fortress or place of safety.

In verse 4, David says he will “abide in Your tabernacle forever.”  When David uses the word tabernacle, it is a reference to the Tabernacle of Meeting which was the primary worship center for Israel.  The elaborate instructions for the creation of the tabernacle are listed in the Book of Exodus, beginning in Chapter 25. It served Israel for several hundred years from immediately after the Exodus, up through King David’s reign.  This was the place of God’s presence and where atonement for sin was made and where God demonstrated His acceptance of the people’s sacrifices.

Finally, he uses another Hebrew word, which is often also translated as “shelter” but it is a different word than the term used in verse 3.   He says he will “trust in the shelter of Your wings.”  This term refers to a “hiding place” or a place of love comfort and well hidden from danger.

So by looking at all four of these terms, we see God is:

  1. Our shelter or place of hope.
  2. Our place of protection or safety.
  3. Our means of salvation and acceptance.
  4. Our hiding place – much like a bird will shield their young under their wing. It’s a place of love and devotion

Home.  That place hope, safety, acceptance and love.  That is what God has for us when we trust in Him.  Trusting God is finding a home as described by King David.

But too often we venture out on our own. We may think God is only interested in us following a set of rules and we may look to the home that He is for us, as a place of burden or restriction.

It all comes down to trust.  Trust the home He has created for you.  See Him as the source of hope, protection, acceptance and love.  It is only when our home is in Him that we are ready to fully embrace the life He has for us.

Blessings My Friend!

-jm

A Life of Praise

I will bless the LORD at all times. His praise shall continually be in my mouth. – Psalm 34:1

There are times when I really praise the LORD.  There are times when I am truly thankful for something God has done or provided for me and I express my thankfulness to Him via praise.  But unfortunately, there are also times when I don’t praise Him very well.  While I wish it wasn’t true of me, I must say, I struggle to have praise “continually be in my mouth.”

I am convinced our church culture does not understand “praise.”  We have time set aside for it in our services.  We do this activity called “worship” but I wonder if we really grasp what praise is to be in our life.

If I am to imitate King David as he writes I Psalm 34, then I need to learn about praise.  David says “I will bless the LORD at all times” and his praise of his King will “continually be in my mouth.”  There were plenty of praise offerings done in the ancient Israel and especially upon completion of the temple.  We see this again in Acts when the young church was singing praises.  Yet, I still have to wonder if praise/worship is to be more than a 20 minute time of congregational singing.  I wonder if we are missing out on some of the bounty the LORD has for us when we negate to see praise in a bigger light.

It would seem, praise is to be a way of life.  Something more than just what I do, but rather, what I am as follower of Christ.  Praise is to be how I think, how I act and how I speak.

In verse 2 of Psalm 34, David says his boast will be in the LORD.  David would have been a fine candidate to boast about his accomplishments, but instead he “boasts in the LORD.”

These verses have been a challenge to me as I need to rearrange my thinking to reflect Him in all things, at all times.  This is easy to do when I am having a good day, but quite another exercise all together when life circumstances have taken a turn for the worst.

The task before me, before all of us, is to better understand praise.  To see it not just as a thing I do but something I am living.  I need to be, a life of praise.

Blessings My Friend!

-jm