Thoughts 19th – 25th Nov

Thursday 19th

Matt Ch 8 verse 2    ‘Lord, if you are willing, you can make me clean.’

Satan loves to convict us and drag us down with condemnation and accusation as we recall past failings and times we’ve messed up and hurt other people.  As well as reminding us all that when we’ve surrendered our lives to Jesus, all of this ‘stuff’ is forgiven; I wanted us to hear these words of the Leper, who comes and kneels at Jesus’ feet.  I love the humility, faith and trust with which he seeks all that Jesus could and did willingly give him.  Equally powerful is Jesus’ response:  ‘Jesus reached out His hand and touched the man.  “I am willing”, He said, “Be clean!”‘  Today, may we approach the risen Lord with open hands and hearts and be ready to receive all that He wants to lavish on us.

Jesus, thank you that you are willing and able to meet our deepest needs.  Praying today for all known to us, suffering with physical and mental health.

 Amen.

 

Friday 20th

Mark Ch 10 verses 51 – 52    Then Jesus said to him “What do you want me to do for you?” The blind man said to him, “My teacher, let me see again.” Jesus said to him, “Go; your faith has made you well” Immediately he regained his sight and followed him on his way.

Jesus always wants us to be honest with him. He directly asks the blind man “What do you want?”

In the Old Testament the people who wrote the psalms were completely honest in writing how they felt even if it included asking God to kill people!!

Job was honest with God in pleading his innocence in the face of suffering.

Honesty in all walks of life is always the best way, whether at work, in families or other situations.

Sometimes we need to be honest with ourselves before we can be honest with God.

Whatever your situation at the moment, give it all to God, talk to Him about how you feel, how things are, good or bad. Be honest! Write it down as a letter to God if that is easier for some of you.

God will help you in whatever way is best for you, through any means.

Father God, thank you that you have known us since before we were born. Thank you for knowing each and every situation in our lives. Help us live, help us love, help us pray, help us be honest, Help us O Lord we pray.

Amen

 

Saturday 21st

Revelation Ch 22 verse 13    I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End.

As God is eternal the use of the language of first and last and beginning and ending is there purely for the benefit of the reader.  It is language meant to convey to the reader that there is nothing that exists outside of God, nothing to be concerned about that God does not know of.

As the instigator of all things and the one who will draw a curtain on this earth as we know it, he is all knowing, all seeing and all powerful.  As the apostle Paul says in Acts Ch 17 verse 28 ‘in Him we live and move and have our being’. 

Several years ago, I was on a course when it was articulated in this simple phrase which even today blows my mind, ‘although he extends beyond creations rim, every atom contains all of him’.

This is the God and father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the one who has called us into his family, the body of Christ and made us joint heirs with him.

The next time you turn up at a Church you might like to remind yourself that it is this God that you have come to meet with, one who delights in our presence and makes straight paths for all those who will put their trust in him.

Dear Lord Jesus, open our eyes to see you as the prophet Isaiah saw you, ‘high and lifted up with your train filling the temple’.  May we see your majesty and not be limited by the smallness of our thinking.

Amen

 

Sunday 22nd

Psalm 33 verse 22    ‘May your unfailing love rest upon us, O Lord, even as we put our hope in you.’

As I read this I pray God’s blessing upon you.  Imagining God’s hand touching your head and showering His love upon you.  I pray also in this season that God’s Word would be a rich source of hope and truth for us all.  As we pray for ourselves and for others, may God’s Holy Spirit surround us with His presence bringing comfort and peace.  Whatever your hopes, fears, joys and pains:  may you be able to give them all to your loving heavenly Father. Nothing we bring is too big or too small for His mercy and love to reach.

Lord Jesus, thank you for entering our world and living as one of us.  Thank you for breaking the power of darkness.  You are the light of the world – may people be drawn to that light here in Wath. 

Amen.

 

Monday 23rd

Mark Ch 10 verses 14 & 16    Let the little children come to me; do not stop them. And he took them up in his arms, laid his arms on them and blessed them.

If you are familiar with this passage you will remember the disciples were stopping the children going to Jesus as they thought he was too busy for them.

Take a moment think of all the children you know. Children that are in the Sunday School, toddler group, your own children whether still living at home or fully fledged adults.

How has this year impacted them? Do they have parents who have lost their jobs? Do they have parents who are ill? All the younger children will have had their education affected whether at school or university. What are the circumstances that you know about that affect them?

It’s important that children know they are special and loved.

Let’s pray for them now.

Father, thank you for all these children. Please bless them now with something that will be meaningful to them. Fill them with peace, take away anxiety and enable them to be safe and loved.

Amen

 

Tuesday 24th

Habakkuk Ch 3 verses 17 – 18    Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Saviour.

When things are difficult, circumstances seem to be against us, evil seems to have the upper hand and all that we define as good is being overwhelmed, what do we do?

This seems to be the experience that the prophet Habakkuk is talking about in this chapter, culminating in these 2 verses.  Even nature seems to have turned its back on the prophet, in other words if it can go wrong it has done!  Yet, even in the midst of such circumstances Habakkuk makes the decision that he will rejoice in the Lord, that he will be joyful.

Sometimes being thankful and choosing to be joyful are acts of the will, rather than what we feel like doing, which is most likely feeling sorry for ourselves or asking why this has happened.

When it is difficult, things have gone badly, our health is not what it could be, and if it can go wrong it has done, then we need to remind ourselves that God is still God, we are still part of his family, and that our ultimate hope stretches beyond our present circumstances.  That we are loved beyond belief, and that the kingdom of God is not constrained by the sinfulness of humanity but is often at work in spite of us, and not necessarily because of us.

So, rejoice in all things and be thankful.

Dear Lord Jesus, when all around us is dark and faith seems to have left us, please remind us that you came as a light, to bring love peace joy and hope, and may that light bring joy into our circumstances.

Amen

 

Wednesday 25th

1 Cor Ch 1 verse 18    ‘For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.’

Continuing with last Sunday’s question regarding our perception of God; today we consider the power of God.  Firstly, God’s power was and is evident in all of the wonder of creation around us.  He made us and holds the world in His hands.  Secondly, the work of Jesus the Son on the cross bringing victory over sin and death, as we read above, demonstrates God’s power to save and reunite us with His love.  Thirdly, His power is at work today – God’s Spirit is pointing people everywhere to that same message of the cross.  We need His power to transform, fill and help us be His disciples.

Lord Jesus, living conquering Son:  mend our broken world from top to bottom.  Bring your healing in and through your mighty name we pray. 

Amen.

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