Posts Tagged ‘Direction’


Deuteronomy 8 (NLT) “Be careful to obey all the commands I am giving you today. Then you will live and multiply, and you will enter and occupy the land the LORD swore to give your ancestors… Yes, he humbled you by letting you go hungry and then feeding you with manna, a food previously unknown to you and your ancestors. He did it to teach you that people do not live by bread alone; rather, we live by every word that comes from the mouth of the LORD. For all these forty years your clothes didn’t wear out, and your feet didn’t blister or swell. Think about it: Just as a parent disciplines a child, the LORD your God disciplines you for your own good. “So obey the commands of the LORD your God by walking in his ways and fearing him. For the LORD your God is bringing you into a good land of flowing streams and pools of water, with fountains and springs that gush out in the valleys and hills. It is a land of wheat and barley; of grapevines, fig trees, and pomegranates; of olive oil and honey. It is a land where food is plentiful and nothing is lacking… “But that is the time to be careful! Beware that in your plenty you do not forget the LORD your God and disobey his commands, regulations, and decrees that I am giving you today. For when you have become full and prosperous and have built fine homes to live in, and when your flocks and herds have become very large and your silver and gold have multiplied along with everything else, be careful! Do not become proud at that time and forget the LORD your God, who rescued you from slavery in the land of Egypt. Do not forget that he led you through the great and terrifying wilderness with its poisonous snakes and scorpions, where it was so hot and dry. He gave you water from the rock!… “But I assure you of this: If you ever forget the LORD your God and follow other gods, worshiping and bowing down to them, you will certainly be destroyed. Just as the LORD has destroyed other nations in your path, you also will be destroyed if you refuse to obey the LORD your God.

The Israelites barely were at the borders of their promised land and had not hasted the fruits of what God was to give them. Is that the time to lecture them and of course they wouldn’t forget God after all He did for them. Would they? (more…)


Deuteronomy 2 “Then at last the LORD said to me, ‘You have been wandering around in this hill country long enough; turn to the north. Give these orders to the people: “You will pass through the country belonging to your relatives the Edomites, the descendants of Esau, who live in Seir. The Edomites will feel threatened, so be careful. Do not bother them, for I have given them all the hill country around Mount Seir as their property, and I will not give you even one square foot of their land. If you need food to eat or water to drink, pay them for it. For the LORD your God has blessed you in everything you have done. He has watched your every step through this great wilderness. During these forty years, the LORD your God has been with you, and you have lacked nothing.”’… “Then as we turned north along the desert route through Moab, the LORD warned us, ‘Do not bother the Moabites, the descendants of Lot, or start a war with them. I have given them Ar as their property, and I will not give you any of their land.’”… “When all the men of fighting age had died, the LORD said to me, ‘Today you will cross the border of Moab at Ar and enter the land of the Ammonites, the descendants of Lot. But do not bother them or start a war with them. I have given the land of Ammon to them as their property, and I will not give you any of their land.’”… Moses continued, “Then the LORD said, ‘Now get moving! Cross the Arnon Gorge. Look, I will hand over to you Sihon the Amorite, king of Heshbon, and I will give you his land. Attack him and begin to occupy the land. Beginning today I will make people throughout the earth terrified because of you. When they hear reports about you, they will tremble with dread and fear.’” Moses continued, “From the wilderness of Kedemoth I sent ambassadors to King Sihon of Heshbon with this proposal of peace… “Then the LORD said to me, ‘Look, I have begun to hand King Sihon and his land over to you. Begin now to conquer and occupy his land.’ “Then King Sihon declared war on us and mobilized his forces at Jahaz. But the LORD our God handed him over to us, and we crushed him, his sons, and all his people. We conquered all his towns and completely destroyed everyone—men, women, and children. Not a single person was spared. We took all the livestock as plunder for ourselves, along with anything of value from the towns we ransacked.

One aspect of the Israelite story that is hard to digest is God’s authorization for murder for the purpose of establishing His people in the promised land. Is that not cruel and self-serving and what can we learn out of this passage? (more…)


Numbers 34 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Give these instructions to the Israelites: When you come into the land of Canaan, which I am giving you as your special possession, these will be the boundaries… Then Moses told the Israelites, “This territory is the homeland you are to divide among yourselves by sacred lot. The Lord has commanded that the land be divided among the nine and a half remaining tribes. The families of the tribes of Reuben, Gad, and half the tribe of Manasseh have already received their grants of land on the east side of the Jordan River, across from Jericho toward the sunrise.” And the Lord said to Moses, “Eleazar the priest and Joshua son of Nun are the men designated to divide the grants of land among the people. Enlist one leader from each tribe to help them with the task.

The saying ‘never count your chickens before they hatch’ certainly did not matter to this nation that stood at the extremities of the land they were about to divide. This whole division was to take place before they even conquered the land and instead of God choosing military leaders, He chose was who would divide the land in each tribe. What is God speaking to us today through this mysterious story? (more…)


Romans 6:19b-23
Just as you used to offer the parts of your body in slavery to impurity and to ever-increasing wickedness, so now offer them in slavery to righteousness leading to holiness. When you were slaves to sin, you were free from the control of righteousness. What benefit did you reap at that time from the things you are now ashamed of? Those things result in death! But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves to God, the benefit you reap leads to holiness, and the result is eternal life. For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Shame is a common problem we Christians face daily. We are embarrassed to let the world know our new life because we don’t believe the world will accept the ‘new’ us. We would rather be acceptable to the world around us than to Christ, whom we know is real and true but does not exist in our day-to-day lives. This is a challenge we face everyday and overcoming it seems like such a hard battle. It is to people like us that Paul is writing.

I have 747 friends on facebook, a social networking website, and a dear sister and friend of mine suggested I feature these devotionals on the site. It was hard because I felt most of my friends would not be accepting of me and my religious views. The fear of losing friends gripped me and I pulled down the feature after a day of trying. However, recently I was encouraged once again by the Holy Spirit and I consented. My loss may be a few friends but my gain is the many who might seek the Lord and find their Savior and Redeemer in Him. Lets not be slaves to sin but to God and therefore grow in holiness and gain eternal life!

In His Loving Service,
ServantBoy


John 4:19-24
“Sir,” the woman said, “I can see that you are a prophet. Our fathers worshiped on this mountain, but you Jews claim that the place where we must worship is in Jerusalem.” Jesus declared, “Believe me, woman, a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem. You Samaritans worship what you do not know; we worship what we do know, for salvation is from the Jews. Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth.”

This incident occurred in Samaria and Jesus was talking with a Samaritan woman with whom Jews do not normally converse or have anything to do with. Sounds strange but such stereotypes exist even today. For Jews, talking and having any form of relationship with a non-Jew was sacrilegious and Jesus was going beyond that and actually sharing the gospel! The hope of the Jews was now being offered to all of mankind and the path was simple and straight but would always be against the grain of this world. The part of this passage that stood out to me was when Jesus said that true believers would worship the Father in spirit and truth. What did he mean by that? What is untruthful about how we worship?

Before I accepted Christ as my personal Lord and Savior, going to Church was a requirement and I never missed a week without going and doing all that needed to be done. I was an active and participative Christian and never said I was anything but a Christian. However, my heart and mind was not in what I did because it was ritualistic. When the wool of rituals were removed from my eyes and I saw the Lord calling me into a real relationship and that was when rituals were replaced by a relationship where I now live to serve him. Christ now is alive in me through his spirit and I can worship him in spirit and truth with my entire being. Do you know what I am talking about? Have you drunk the living water? Is your life now filled with meaning and purpose? If no, ask the Lord to remove the wool on your eyes and show you who and what he is and he will. If yes, I hope you are enjoying worshipping God in Spirit and Truth with all your heart and mind?

In Your Loving Service,
Vineet

PS: Sign up for daily devotionals by clicking the email subscription icon at the top right of this page or by visiting http://groups.google.com/group/in-his-loving-service. Also, share this with your friends and family who need some encouragement and direction in their lives.

Beauty in the Bush


Matthew 13:11-17

“The knowledge of the secrets of the kingdom of heaven has been given to you, but not to them. Whoever has will be given more, and he will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him. This is why I speak to them in parables: “Though seeing, they do not see; though hearing, they do not hear or understand. In them is fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah: “‘You will be ever hearing but never understanding; you will be ever seeing but never perceiving. For this people’s heart has become calloused; they hardly hear with their ears, and they have closed their eyes. Otherwise they might see with their eyes, hear with their ears, understand with their hearts and turn, and I would heal them.’ But blessed are your eyes because they see, and your ears because they hear. For I tell you the truth, many prophets and righteous men longed to see what you see but did not see it, and to hear what you hear but did not hear it.


These days, as the weather has gotten cooler and the mornings darker, I find it a challenge to pull myself out of bed to hit the gym and then get to the devotional. The lazy season is upon us and cuddling in bed under the warm quilts has become more fun. As I sat to write this devotional and I sought the Lord’s help and direction, my request to the Lord was that he would open the lazy eyes of my heart and speak to me through his life changing words. It sounds coincidental or totally amazing that the words Jesus spoke to his disciples was about revelation of his words and about who would understand and I praise God that I am part of his kingdom and he speaks to me clearly and personally.

As we set about ministering to the lost sheep among us, one of the battles we face is that some of the people we share our hope and joy of Christ with may not accept and might be blinded to the truth. This is horrible because these are people we might love, might be friends, family or just dear ones and that is tough. However, we have to remember that success is not for us to measure because this is the Lord’s work and he is the one who determines what is success to him. Often times, we are only a cog in the wheel and we are part of the sowing, tilling, harvesting or other processes and God being the business owner orchestrates our efforts for his glory. Today I learned that I need to constantly seek God’s help in hearing him over the din of this world and following him over the desires of my heart. Hope you did too?

In His Loving Service,
Vineet