Anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!

2 Corinthians 5:17

Walking Together

Enoch walked faithfully with God. Genesis 5:23

            When we walk with someone, we enjoy fellowship with them as we travel together. We have a choice to walk with God in a close relationship, or we can choose to wander in our own direction doing as we please. Enoch chose to walk with God. Additionally, the Bible tells us that, “Noah was a righteous man, the only blameless person living on earth at the time, and he walked in close fellowship with God.” Even in the Garden of Eden God we see a hint of God’s walking as we read, “The man and his wife heard the sound of the LORD God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day.”            

Paul wrote that just as we have received Christ Jesus as Lord, we are also to “walk in Him.”  We can walk with God as we pray to Him throughout our day. It’s one thing to know God as an acquaintance we simply see on Sundays. It’s another thing to walk with Him in close fellowship. God invites us to walk with Him. Will you accept the invitation?

This is an excerpt from my devotional Pursuing God in the Quiet Places

The Power of Rest

On the seventh day he rested from all his work. Genesis 2:2

The Bible tells us God does not slumber or sleep. If He does not grow weary or slumber, what does it mean that He rested?  It means that He ceased from His work. He deliberately stopped and set aside the work of creation.  He chose to establish the seventh day as a holy day, a day of Sabbath rest.  The word Sabbath means intermission or repose from labor. The Sabbath was a covenant sign of God’s lordship over creation. The Israelites were instructed to observe a Sabbath rest, thereby identifying themselves as God’s redeemed people. 

God wanted His people to be set apart and be different than the rest of the world by ceasing from work one day a week. When we take a break from activity it gives us time to reflect on the goodness of God and trust Him for our provision. It also allows us to mentally and physically recoup from our work.

Thank you Father for you know what is best for us. Thank you Father for establishing a pattern of rest for us.

He is our Teacher

Mary turned toward him and cried out in Aramaic,

 “Rabboni!” (which means “Teacher”).

John 20:16

            Mary used a Galilean term of respect toward Jesus which meant “Master.” She humbly respected Jesus as her master and teacher. What a beautiful place to be, looking to Jesus as his student, recognizing that He had the words of life. Who is your master teacher? Often we get distracted and try to forge our way on our own, forgetting our master and teacher lovingly instructs those who have ears to hear.

            As a follower of Christ, we learn from Him. We learn from His word and we learn from His example as we study both in scripture. As His disciples or students we follow in His footsteps. My fellow student, are you hungry to learn from Him? Do you look to Him for instruction and guidance each day? He is not just a man we learn about in church; He is our teacher, our master, our instructor for life.

The Grand Artist

God saw all that he had made, and it was very good. Genesis 1:31

            Have you ever watched an artist at work? Typically they will toil over their work for a while, then step back and observe it from several different angles, make some adjustments and proceed with their work until their masterpiece is finished. When God looked at all He created, He declared it was very good and rested from His work. The grand designer and artist of all things created a glorious masterpiece, which no artist on this earth can ever duplicate.            

The word for “good” means favorable; pleasing, right, best. God appraised each of the six days of creation with the acknowledgement that it was “good,” but upon completion He declared it all “very good.” Creator and critic, He knew what He had created was the best. Let us live each day in appreciation of His creation. See the beauty in each person. Enjoy the pleasant surroundings in nature and stand in awe at the wonders of the universe. He made it all and it is pleasing and wonderful. It is very good!

This is an excerpt from Pursuing God in the Quiet Places

Making A Positive Difference in Texas

Although the epic winter storm in Texas is gone, the damage it left in its wake continues. Families displaced, homes and apartments destroyed – there are many people who suffered a great deal of loss.

Here are a few links to several groups I respect and trust who are doing the hard work to help families here in Texas. These “boots on the ground” organizations are making a tangible difference in the lives of families devastated by the recent winter storm.

Operation Care: https://operationcareinternational.org/

Texas Baptist Men: https://www.tbmtx.org/

Buckner International: https://www.buckner.org/blog/hope-after-winter-storm-uri

Samaritans Purse: https://www.samaritanspurse.org/

Each of these organizations offer hope to those who are trying  to sort through the damage of the storm. Please reach out to them if you need help. These organizations also offer opportunities to volunteer and give. Each of us must prayerfully consider ways we can help.

I want to encourage you to reach out personally to those you know who may have experienced loss during the storm. Simply checking in with family, friends and neighbors can make a positive difference to someone in need. We can’t do everything, but we can do something. Let’s each take one step to serve, care, pray and give.

One specific ministry that could use your help right now is Exodus Ministries in Dallas. This ministry offers transition housing for women and their families. Our Engage Parenting program has the privilege of leading parenting classes for them. We recently found out that they experienced a tremendous amount of damage and loss at their residential apartment complex. Please consider prayerfully giving to help them in this time of need.  Click here:  www.exodusministries.org