“Why Study the Bible?” 10/27/2016 Written by Elihu Anderson

“Our Daily Bread”     http://odb.org

The Daily Devotions of Greg Laurie    http://www.harvest.org/devotional

Written by Elihu Anderson  @   http://elihuscorner.com/

Original post @  https://elihuscorner.com/2016/10/26/why-study-the-bible/

Why Study the Bible?


Last week, I shared with you why I ditched my Bible reading plan, and relayed my current plan for trekking through the book of Romans.

In the past week and a half, I have read through Romans three times. I’ve read and reread various chapters, trying to grasp the bigger picture of the letter. I thought, perhaps, that if I focused solely on Romans, I would draw more from the text.

Sadly, I STILL found myself continuing to tune out, fighting to keep my mind on the task at hand.

Granted… My mind has been engaged in a fierce battle with depression, among other things. October is a challenging month for me. Three years ago yesterday, my spouse endured a traumatic event that turned our lives upside down. In truth, near-death experiences are traumatic for both spouses. We both suffer from a degree of PTSD, (my spouse, of course, suffers from it on a far greater level than I). While we both try not to dwell on this past event, on some intangible plane, we find ourselves more restless during the month of October.

…So, ok, I might be struggling with some mental stuff… maybe that’s what’s giving me writer’s block and lack of focus.

Be that as it may, I don’t want to succumb to my distracted state or create excuses to be slack in my pursuit of God. We must all engage in the fight to stay on course, contending with our own weakness.

Yesterday, as I was cobbling together my upcoming Bible class lesson on prayer, I had a light bulb moment: We pray in order to talk to God, we study in order to listen to God. We engage in these activities because we love God and want to know Him more. 

I had lost sight of the big picture! 

Why do I study the Bible?

Is it for the purpose of securing material for my blog? No…

Is it to make myself wiser? While we gain wisdom through the Word, it isn’t enough motivation…

Is it to know how to live? Partially…

Do I seek to make myself righteous by checking that box? Dear me! I hope not!

Do I study in order to defend and contend? Yes, but it still doesn’t give me sufficient focus…

So, why? Why do I need to fight to stay focused and carve time out of my day to read God’s Word?

I want to know God.

“Aren’t you a Christian, Elihu? Don’t you already know God?” 

Stick with me, dear readers, and consider…

Before we enter the marriage relationship, we spend countless hours with the person we love. We want to know them as well as possible before committing to this life-long relationship. We endeavor to learn their interests, favorite things, etcetera, in order to please them. My spouse and I began our dating long-distance. We spent long hours talking on the phone about everything—faith, child-rearing, movies, scenarios, future plans etcetera. As our relationship progressed, I thought I knew my intended pretty well.

Then we got married.

Talk about entering a whole new level!

Eleven years later, we are still learning. Our relationship grows ever deeper. As I age and my spouse ages, we must continue to learn (and re-learn) our morphing personalities and interests. I know my spouse quite well, but I should never stop seeking to know more.

In a similar way, when we become a Christian, we embark on a new relationship with God. (Note: God never changes like my spouse and I do…) Often, this relationship with God begins out of reverent fear. As we grow in Christ, however, this grows into deepening gratitude and  love. Furthermore, God is indescribably greater than we are. His wisdom, compared to our own, is like the size of the universe compared to a speck of sand. He wants us to seek Him, to know Him, and to glorify Him. We don’t find God and check Him off our bucket list as though we saw the Eiffel Tower. Seeking to know God ought to be our lifelong pursuit. 

Yesterday, I sat down with my Bible, a delicious cup of homemade chai, and my new focus. I wanted to read through Romans chapter 1 and specifically focus on what those 32 verses revealed about God.

Here’s what I found in chapter one:

  • God is creator (verses 20 & 25)

  • God promised the gospel (He always keeps His promises) (verse 2)

  • God loves us (verse 7)

  • God has revealed Himself to all men since creation (verses 19-20)

  • God’s decrees are righteous (verse 32)

  • God possesses eternal power & divine nature (verse 20)

  • God’s wrath is directed at evil & suppression of truth (verse 18)

You might say, “Elihu, didn’t you know that already?”

Sure I did, but I never recognized before now how much God revealed about himself in Romans chapter one.

This morning, as I read chapter 2, I jotted down this quick list:

  • God is judge (verses 2, 5 and 16)

  • God is kind (verses 2 & 3)

  • God exercises forbearance (verse 4) (forbearance by definition is “the action of refraining from exercising a legal right, especially enforcing the payment of a debt” Websters)

  • God is patient (verse 4)

  • God’s kindness is intended to lead us to repentance (verse 4)

  • God is impartial (verse 11)

  • God renders each of us according to our works (verse 6) (Render, definition, “to cause (someone or something) to be in a specified condition; to give something to someone” Websters)

  • The state of the heart and conscience is of great importance to God (verses 15 & 29)

These are very rough lists, but I have made it my goal to go through each chapter of the book of Romans with the specific purpose of seeing what is revealed to me about God. It’s quite engaging! At the end of Romans, I will consolidate my list and then go to the next book to see what is revealed and/or repeated.

You may notice that my list included definitions. If you are unsure why a word is used, think how you would explain it to a six-year old. (Albert Einstein said, “If you can’t explain it to a six-year old, you don’t understand it yourself.”) If you find that you would be unable to explain it to a young child, look it up. The internet has dictionaries if you don’t keep one in your house. Understanding the definition of words will deepen your comprehension of the text along with your knowledge of God.

Study the Bible to know the Lord. Our relationship with God isn’t sustained by “falling” in love, but by seeking to know the One whom we love. Seek the Lord today; tomorrow may be too late.

Let us know; let us press on to know the Lord;
His going out is sure as the dawn;
He will come to us as the showers,
As the spring rains that water the earth.

~ Hosea 6:9, ESV

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“Selfie Culture !” 10/26/2016 Written by Michael for “Altruistico”

“Our Daily Bread”     http://odb.org

The Daily Devotions of Greg Laurie    http://www.harvest.org/devotional

Image result for picture of selfie

Written by Michael for “Altruistico”  @  https://altruistico.wordpress.com

Original post @  https://altruistico.wordpress.com/2016/10/02/selfie-culture/

Selfie Culture !

What does the Bible say that would apply to selfies?

The term selfie, which was the Oxford Dictionary’s 2013 word of the year, refers to a photo taken of oneself, usually with a camera phone, and posted on a social media site. Selfies can range from silly “duck-faced” snapshots to pornographic videos. A “selfie culture” is one in which people take a lot of selfies, of course. But, for the purposes of this article, we will further define a selfie culture as a widespread obsession with self-expression, self-esteem, and self-promotion, evidenced by the proliferation of self-portraits on social media. The Bible was written before the advent of camera phones, but God’s Word still has plenty to say about one’s view of self.

While there is nothing inherently wrong with taking a selfie and sharing it with others, selfie culture, as defined above, is steeped in narcissism. Need yourself to appear thinner before posting? There’s an app for that. The selfie mentality seems to find a boldness and arrogance behind the camera that would never be expressed in person: there are selfie sub-categories such as “selfies with homeless people” and “selfies at funerals.” By posting selfies, any person can taste a droplet of fame, which can quickly become addicting. However, this obsession can impact self-worth and true relationships when personal value is based upon the number of “likes,” followers, replies, or comments received in response.

When we apply biblical standards to the mindset commonly advanced in the selfie culture, we find an immediate clash of values. Jesus called John the Baptist “the greatest in the kingdom of God” (Luke 7:28). Yet John’s approach to personal fame is summed up in his famous statement “He must increase, but I must decrease” (John 3:30). Jesus was clear that to be great in the kingdom of God one must become a servant (Matthew 23:11). His life was the antithesis of the selfie culture’s obsession with self. Whenever the people tried to make Jesus king, He slipped away from them and went to lonely places to pray (John 6:15).

Jesus also rebuked what we could call a selfie culture among some of those who desired to follow Him. Jesus said, “If anyone comes to me and does not hate father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters—yes, even their own life—such a person cannot be my disciple. And whoever does not carry their cross and follow me cannot be my disciple” (Luke 14:26–27). In direct opposition to our self-centered desires, Jesus said, “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will find it” (Matthew 16:25).

For the modern church living in the selfie culture, the New Testament expounds upon Jesus’ words, exhorting us to stand firm in the teachings we first received. Galatians 5:24 reminds us that “those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.” Those “passions and desires” are described in 1 John 2:15–16 as “the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life.” The “pride of life” certainly defines self-absorption.

A selfie culture obsessed with self-expression cannot get enough of itself. Like lust or greed, an insatiable thirst for attention only grows when indulged. We are told not to chase after self-gratification and so distinguish ourselves from those who do not know God (1 Thessalonians 4:3–7). We are also instructed not to desire to be rich but to seek wisdom, godliness, and contentment instead (1 Timothy 6:6, 9–10; Proverbs 3:13–16).

Christians living in the selfie culture must beware of creating a “selfie Christianity.” Rather than challenge our culture’s self-absorption, many Christian leaders cater to it. The shift has been subtle but unmistakable. Rather than glorify the character of God, many sermon points now begin with the word you and focus on how God can help you in your life with your dreams. Instead of teaching the cost of discipleship as Jesus did (Luke 14:26–32), too many teachers promote seeking “your best life now” or tantalize with the promise of blessing for those who “pray this prayer after me.” Rarely is the depravity of man mentioned in the cathedrals that attract the carnally minded. Instead, the messages are light on Scripture and heavy on flattery and self-worship. Couched as “encouragement,” these selfie messages substitute biblical words like sin, repentance, and sacrifice with more pleasing terms such as mistakes, change, and believe in yourself. This selfie culture is seeing a fulfillment of 2 Timothy 4:3, which warns, “For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching earswant to hear.”

The battle cries of New Testament Christianity have always been “Take up your cross and follow Jesus! Be crucified with Christ. Store up for yourselves treasure in heaven, not here on earth” (Luke 9:23; Galatians 2:20; Matthew 6:19). But the battle cries of selfie Christianity sound like this: “God thinks you are awesome! Follow your dreams! Speak positively, and God will bless it.” This pseudo-gospel has integrated with the selfie culture, and the heresy is going virtually undetected by millions.

Psalm 119:36 says, “Incline my heart to your testimonies, and not to selfish gain.” The focus of the Bible is God, not us. The Bible is the historical account of God’s limitless love pursuing undeserving Man. It is the story of redemption, accessed only through repentance (Matthew 4:17; Acts 3:19). God does bless His people (Genesis 24:1; Psalm 128:1). He does delight in pouring out His grace, mercy, and blessing on those who fear Him (Ephesians 1:6; Psalm 112:1). But when we view God as a merely a means to obtain earthly blessing, we have bought into a false gospel. When Jesus is presented as the ticket to get what we want from God, “another Jesus” is being preached (see 2 Corinthians 11:4).

As we take our selfies and post them for others to see, we must take care to maintain godliness, modesty, and propriety. Selfie culture tends to foster a love of self. But Jesus said the greatest commandment is to “love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength” (Mark 12:30). When we love God, obedience follows naturally. We cannot love God biblically and continue to be infatuated with ourselves. The closer we draw to God, the more we see the depravity of our own hearts. Self-infatuation has no room for the love of God. We can only serve one master (Matthew 6:24). Jesus came not to refine our flesh but to kill it (Romans 6:6; Galatians 2:20), and until we are willing to crucify our selfie mindset, we cannot be His true disciples.


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“God is in Control (2)” 10/25/2016 Posted by Don Merritt for “The Life Project”

“Our Daily Bread”     http://odb.org

The Daily Devotions of Greg Laurie    http://www.harvest.org/devotional

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Posted by Don Merritt  for “The Life Project” @  https://lifereference.wordpress.com

Original post @     https://lifereference.wordpress.com/2016/10/24/god-is-in-control-2-2/

God is in Control (2)

Ecclesiastes 3:9-15

Mankind lives in the sorry state of rebellion against God. Yes, I’m afraid that is the reality of life under the sun, but that doesn’t mean that God has lost His grip, for He has ordered things in a certain way under the sun; there are seasons that men cannot change, seasons for everything. Within all of this chaos, confusion, rebellion and order, God still has a purpose. Of course, His purpose is significantly clearer in the New Testament than in the Old, but there was Purpose in play even then. In the OT, every person who sprang forth from the seed of Abraham had a choice to make; they could either confine themselves to God’s will (purpose) for them, or they could live in rebellion under the sun. In our day, this choice extends to every single human being.

The Teacher makes this case here in Ecclesiastes 3. In this text, he deals briefly with three aspects of God’s purpose beginning in verses 10-11 where he speaks of our completion of God’s purpose, then in 12-13 he speaks of our enjoyment of God’s blessing and then finally in 14-15, he speaks of our contentment with God’s will. All of this is his answer to the question posed in verse 9:

What do workers gain from their toil?

We are those workers, so what do we get?

I have seen the burden God has laid on the human race. He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end. (10-11)

When we come to understand that we are put here for God’s purposes rather than our own, we begin to see that everything is beautiful in its time. To put this into Christian terms, we might ask ourselves what could be more beautiful than to see our labors result in someone coming into relationship with Jesus Christ. We might see that a man or woman who is able to be set free from bondage to addiction or poverty or hopelessness and enter into the fullness of His grace is a beautiful thing indeed, and more rewarding than all of the treasure of this world. Yes, He has put eternity into our hearts, for unlike the animals, we have the ability to plan and to think ahead, but what will our plans and thinking be: to serve God or to serve ourselves? With the former we will find beauty that others may miss, while with the latter, the only beauty we will find is that which will perish with us.

The Teacher continues:

I know that there is nothing better for people than to be happy and to do good while they live.  That each of them may eat and drink, and find satisfaction in all their toil—this is the gift of God. (12-13)

Those of us who do our toil for God’s purpose have a gift that others do not; real happiness and satisfaction. The Teacher has made great pains, and will continue in this book to take great pains, to document the utter futility of the pursuit of mere human endeavors, but the gift of God for those who labor in His service is a most excellent gift, for it is a gift that will endure and that will satisfy the craving within every man and woman to seek after the eternal things of God.

I know that everything God does will endure forever; nothing can be added to it and nothing taken from it. God does it so that people will fear him.

Whatever is has already been,
and what will be has been before;
and God will call the past to account. (14-15)

The Teacher winds up this thought in these verses in an interesting way as he gives us a contrast of sorts. God’s purposes and accomplishments last forever, we can neither add nor detract from God’s purpose, but where is the contrast? The contrast is the works of men that are “meaningless” under the sun. Verse 15 makes this clear as the Teacher quotes himself (Ecc. 1:9) where he wailed about the futility of our accomplishments. God is n charge, not us; we can do whatever we want, but if we want our accomplishments to count for something, then we must accomplish things that are within God’s will and purpose for us, not our own flights of fancy. God has ordained this so that we might take notice, for everyone will be called to account.

The rest of this chapter, as you might guess, speaks of the justice of God; His most excellent justice. Before we dive headlong into God’s judgment, let’s pause and get our bearings. I’ve never actually come out and said this before, so lucky you; you get to read it first: God’s judgment is really something of a paradox: God is entirely and completely in control of it, but you decide the outcome.

Oh, I can hear the theologians screaming! Hey, not so fast; think about it. You decide whether your life will be used to advance His purpose or yours, and that decision will result in what becomes of you in judgment. Will you pursue all of those meaningless things as you chase the wind in this life under the sun, or will you labor for His purposes and enjoy His gifts of happiness and satisfaction?

OK, now I can’t wait to see what the Teacher has to say next time!


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“Hope in Sorrows & Affliction” 10/24/2016 Written by Denise Pass for “Seeing Deep Ministries”

“Our Daily Bread”     http://odb.org

The Daily Devotions of Greg Laurie    http://www.harvest.org/devotional

Written by Denise Pass for “Seeing Deep Ministries”  @  http://denisepass.com/home/

Original post @   https://denisepassdevotions.com/2016/10/22/day-22-hope-in-sorrows-affliction/

Day 22: Hope in Sorrows & Affliction



Inspirational Thought of the Day:

Our hope was always supposed to be in God Himself.

Scriptures of the Day:

Exodus 3:7

And Jehovah said, I have surely seen the affliction of My people who are in Egypt; I have heard their cry because of their taskmasters; for I know their sorrows.

2 Chronicles 33:12

“And when he was in affliction, he sought Jehovah his God, and humbled himself greatly before the God of his fathers.”

Job 36:15

“He delivers the poor in his affliction, and opens their ears by oppression.”

Psalms 119:50

“This is my comfort in my affliction; for Your Word has given me life.”

Kneeling on the ground I looked up to the ceiling and cried out aloud. “Why, God?” “Why did I have to lose this child?” I reached for my Bible, asking God to help me understand. I opened up to Psalm 119:67-72: “Before I was afflicted I went astray, but now I obey your word. 68 You are good, and what you do is good; teach me your decrees. … 71 It was good for me to be afflicted so that I might learn your decrees. 72The law from your mouth is more precious to me than thousands of pieces of silver and gold.”

How could a miscarriage ever be good? But that day my tears were turned to joy as I was in awe of the truth that it was in love that God allowed affliction into my life. He is good and in His faithfulness He afflicts those he loves. How can it be faithful to allow affliction? Affliction works to deliver us from waywardness and causes us to draw nearer to God.

“Deep calls to deep” is a phrase that is at the foundation of my ministry and how God has used the greatest sorrows of my life and in others. We would never want to walk through such deep waters of affliction, but it is the affliction itself that accomplishes miracles within us and a closeness with God we never knew before.

The hardest moments of my life have only caused me to go deeper with my God and I would not trade those precious gifts for the world. The hope in affliction is sure. The word says that God sees us in our suffering and He Himself will comfort us. There is no greater comfort than this.

It is affliction and sorrow that bring us to God. When we see how He cares for the lilies of the field and that a sparrow cannot fall to the ground apart from His will, we know that nothing happens to us apart from His sovereign good will and purposes.

The hope in affliction is different than the hope we had before the affliction. The hope for no suffering becomes a hope to glorify God in it. But more than that, we realize our hope for temporary gain pales in comparison to the hope that God has in store for us.

Our hope was never supposed to be in the hope the world offers. The world’s hope ends. No, our hope was always supposed to be in God Himself.

“There is surely a future hope for you, and your hope will not be cut off.” (Proverbs 23:18)

I wrote this song, “Deeper” as part of our Seeing Deep EP. I pray that in whatever rejection or pain you have had to bear you will know the hope we have in affliction – we will go deeper with God and draw nearer to God!

Lord, You are our hope. Nothing else and on one else could ever be a living hope. Help us to abide in You always.


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“Why Should We Pray ??” 10/23/2016 Writen by Sunny Jan

“Our Daily Bread”     http://odb.org

The Daily Devotions of Greg Laurie    http://www.harvest.org/devotional

Written by Sunny Jan, posted on https://www.facebook.com/groups/269483033171419/


            Image result for images of praying

“Why Should We Pray ??”


                          Written by Sunny Jan

We pray for a variety of reasons. For one thing, prayer is a form of serving God (Luke 2:36-38) and obeying Him. We pray because God commands us to pray (Philippians 4:6-7). Prayer is exemplified for us by Christ and the early church (Mark 1:35; Acts 1:14; 2:42; 3:1; 4:23-31; 6:4; 13:1-3). If Jesus thought it was worthwhile to pray, we should also. If He needed to pray to remain in the Father’s will, how much more do we need to pray?

Another reason to pray is that God intends prayer to be the means of obtaining His solutions in a number of situations. We pray in preparation for major decisions (Luke 6:12-13); to overcome demonic barriers (Matthew 17:14-21); to gather workers for the spiritual harvest (Luke 10:2); to gain strength to overcome temptation (Matthew 26:41); and to obtain the means of strengthening others spiritually (Ephesians 6:18-19).

We come to God with our specific requests, and we have God’s promise that our prayers are not in vain, even if we do not receive specifically what we asked for (Matthew 6:6; Romans 8:26-27). He has promised that when we ask for things that are in accordance with His will, He will give us what we ask for (1 John 5:14-15). Sometimes He delays His answers according to His wisdom and for our benefit. In these situations, we are to be diligent and persistent in prayer (Matthew 7:7; Luke 18:1-8). Prayer should not be seen as our means of getting God to do our will on earth, but rather as a means of getting God’s will done on earth. God’s wisdom far exceeds our own.

For situations in which we do not know God’s will specifically, prayer is a means of discerning His will. If the Syrian woman with the demon-influenced daughter had not prayed to Christ, her daughter would not have been made whole (Mark 7:26-30). If the blind man outside Jericho had not called out to Christ, he would have remained blind (Luke 18:35-43). God has said that we often go without because we do not ask (James 4:2). In one sense, prayer is like sharing the gospel with people. We do not know who will respond to the message of the gospel until we share it. In the same way, we will never see the results of answered prayer unless we pray.

A lack of prayer demonstrates a lack of faith and a lack of trust in God’s Word. We pray to demonstrate our faith in God, that He will do as He has promised in His Word and bless our lives abundantly more than we could ask or hope for (Ephesians 3:20). Prayer is our primary means of seeing God work in others’ lives. Because it is our means of “plugging into” God’s power, it is our means of defeating Satan and his army that we are powerless to overcome by ourselves. Therefore, may God find us often before His throne, for we have a high priest in heaven who can identify with all that we go through (Hebrews 4:15-16). We have His promise that the fervent prayer of a righteous man accomplishes much (James 5:16-18). May God glorify His name in our lives as we believe in Him enough to come to Him often in prayer.


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“What is the fruit of the Holy Spirit?” 10/22/2016 Posted by www.gotquestions.org

“Our Daily Bread”     http://odb.org/

The Daily Devotions of Greg Laurie    http://www.harvest.org/devotional

              ~ Galatians 5:22-23:

 Posted by www.gotquestions.org

Original post @  https://gotquestions.org/QOTW.htm


Question: “What is the fruit of the Holy Spirit?”

Answer: Galatians 5:22-23 tells us, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.” The fruit of the Holy Spirit is the result of the Holy Spirit’s presence in the life of a Christian. The Bible makes it clear that everyone receives the Holy Spirit the moment he or she believes in Jesus Christ (Romans 8:9; 1 Corinthians 12:13; Ephesians 1:13-14). One of the primary purposes of the Holy Spirit coming into a Christian’s life is to change that life. It is the Holy Spirit’s job to conform us to the image of Christ, making us more like Him.

The fruit of the Holy Spirit is in direct contrast with the acts of the sinful nature in Galatians 5:19-21, “The acts of the sinful nature are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.” This passage describes all people, to varying degrees, when they do not know Christ and therefore are not under the influence of the Holy Spirit. Our sinful flesh produces certain types of fruit that reflect our nature, and the Holy Spirit produces types of fruit that reflect His nature.

The Christian life is a battle of the sinful flesh against the new nature given by Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17). As fallen human beings, we are still trapped in a body that desires sinful things (Romans 7:14-25). As Christians, we have the Holy Spirit producing His fruit in us and we have the Holy Spirit’s power available to conquer the acts of the sinful nature (2 Corinthians 5:17; Philippians 4:13). A Christian will never be completely victorious in always demonstrating the fruits of the Holy Spirit. It is one of the main purposes of the Christian life, though, to progressively allow the Holy Spirit to produce more and more of His fruit in our lives—and to allow the Holy Spirit to conquer the opposing sinful desires. The fruit of the Spirit is what God desires our lives to exhibit and, with the Holy Spirit’s help, it is possible!

Recommended Resource: The Wonderful Spirit-Filled Life by Charles Stanley

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Picture credit:  https://www.pinterest.com/pin/216383957071478542/


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“CALL 9-1-1!” 10/21/2016 Written by Nancy Ruegg

“Our Daily Bread”     http://odb.org

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Written by Nancy Ruegg  @  http://nancyaruegg.com

View original post @   https://nancyaruegg.com/2016/10/17/call-9-1-1/

CALL 9-1-1!




Three-year old Elena (our granddaughter) had much to report about preschool last Thursday:

“Firemen came and they brought their fire truck! We got to hold the hose!”

Later Elena recited what to do if a fire occurred: 1) Don’t open a hot door, 2) To get out, crawl along the floor under the smoke, 3) Stop, drop, and roll if clothes catch fire, and 4)…


“…CALL 9-1-1!” she announced loudly and firmly.

Isn’t it a comfort to know that with three quick taps on our phones we have access to emergency help almost anywhere at any time?   The process to develop such a system, however, was not quick. It took forty-some years to fully install the Emergency Call Answering System, from its inception in the 1950s to almost complete coverage of 911 service across all America by the 1990s.

On the other hand, Pastor Arnold Prater pointed out years ago in one of his sermons that King David of Bible times called 9-1-1.

Did you know that?  I didn’t.

David recorded his call in Psalm 91, verse one – 911:


(“He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High

will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.”)

Notice his call was not characterized by panicked fear. Instead his attitude is one of calm faith.  David affirmed several important truths about Who he was calling andwhat the Almighty had to offer to those who dwell in His shelter.

Wait a minute. DWELL? How do we dwell in the presence of an unseen God?

By bringing our thoughts back to him throughout the day with praise, worship, and gratitude. We can:


  • Say his name to center our attention. He has dozens but to get us started, he is God Almighty, Maker of all things, The Lord Who Provides, and our Helper. Let who he is impact how we function.

  • Breathe out the stressful, worrisome thoughts; breathe in the Spirit, the breath of the Almighty (Job 33:4). Listen for his voice.

  • Pray, recite scripture, sing, even shout (Psalm 47:1-2)!


David says we dwell in the SHELTER of God. Bible writers used the word, shelter, or synonyms like refuge and sanctuary, more than 40 times. In Psalm 91, David alludes to several details of God’s sheltering protection. He is trustworthy (v. 2), faithful (v. 4), watchful (v. 11), attentive (v. 15), thoughtful and compassionate (vs. 15-16).

These traits are just a few examples of our Heavenly Father’s character—which he brings to bear in our lives. He never responds out of character; he is always motivated by love and goodness. Take shelter in such glorious thoughts!

In addition to those mentioned above, the MOST HIGH is another meaningful name of God. One of the ancient creeds described him as “a Spirit infinite, eternal and unchangeable in His being, wisdom, power, holiness, justice, goodness and truth.” No one can claim to be of higher capacity or higher worth.


And in him we can REST. How? I like Spurgeon’s advice: “Use the Lord’s words as your pillows. Lie down and [rest] in Him.” We can collect pillow after pillow as we prayerfully read our Bibles, asking God to speak comfort and strength into our weary souls.

And in the SHADOW OF THE ALMIGHTY we find:

  • Security (Psalm 17:8),

  • Love and Kindness (Psalm 36:7),

  • Refuge (Psalm 57:1),

  • Satisfaction and Joy (Psalm 63:7).


Now some readers of Psalm 9-1-1 might assume David was promising a delightful, problem-free life of ease. But his own life proved otherwise as he ran from murderous King Saul, lived as a fugitive in enemy territory, fought numerous battles, dealt with problem sons, and more.

No, David would be among the first to tell us that God doesn’t rescue us from all difficulty; he uses difficulties to nudge us closer to him.

In the shelter of the Most High.

In the shadow of the Almighty.


What better place to be?

(Art & photo credits:  www.youtube.com; http://www.wikimedia.org;http://www.thefellowshipsite.org; http://www.flickr.com;http://www.quotes.gram.com; http://www.pinterest (4).


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