Re:Verse reading–1 Samuel 15 (day seven)
Then Saul said to Samuel, “I did obey the voice of the Lord, and went on the mission on which the Lord sent me, and have brought back Agag the king of Amalek, and have utterly destroyed the Amalekites. But the people took some of the spoil, sheep and oxen, the choicest of the things devoted to destruction, to sacrifice to the Lord your God at Gilgal.” (v. 20-21)
Everything Saul achieved was exactly what a nation wants in battle: incredible spoils and the opposing king imprisoned. The campaign was a flawless military endeavor, a flawless military endeavor that ruined his career. There are times in this life that play out perfectly by every discernable measure, but they separate us from God. As perfect as the scenario looks, if it separates you from God it is ruinous. Do not let worldly measures of success define you, rather seek first His Kingdom and His righteousness, and all those other things will be added to you.
Re:Verse reading–Romans 13 (day six)
Paul sums up his teaching in Romans 13 by admonishing us to “put on Jesus.” Regardless of who is in authority over us, or the type of government, we are simply to be like Jesus. Whether we face justice or injustice, we are to be like Jesus. We are to live for another Kingdom altogether, under the authority of one who is greater than all earthly rulers. This, of course, means that often we look otherworldly in how we conduct our lives. That’s just it, Paul is far more concerned with our righteousness than he is about the state of our government. He is far more concerned with the state of the Church, than the state of the Union. Romans 13 reminds us that God has all the kingdoms of earth in the palm of his hand; we need not worry, we simply need to pursue one thing, to “put on Jesus.” Will you?
It lurks in our heads. The fear of failure. Sometimes it is not even as clear as a fear. A pessimism about possibilites that tamps down enthusiasm like water on a fire. Faith is the cure. Not skin faith, only heart faith will do. Faith that prays “for Thine is the KINGDOM, and the POWER, and the GLORY with a confident shout! Faith that looks at the power of God rather than the size of the giant. Faith that is the “assurance of things hoped for” (Hebrews 11) because it believes that “God is able”( Ephesians 3 ). On Sunday at FBC we will study John 12. It is the inspiring story of the Lord yielding His life to the cross with the expectation of MUCH fruit. He does not expect some fruit. He expects MUCH. He does not fear failure–not even the possibility. Today, as I pray His words, I’m asking Him to give me His fearless heart.