Scripture for Today: Proverbs 3:5-6 “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways submit to Him and He will make your paths straight.”
Who would not slow down and give way to penguins? This sign warns motorists at Oamaru Harbour, New Zealand, to slow down for the Little Blue Penguins. They are the world’s smallest and are also called Fairy Penguins. Their size makes them easy to miss, crossing the road. They come ashore to prepare their nests or to shed their feathers and grow a new waterproof coat. For me, yielding right-of-way is a non-issue.
Today’s verse tells us we are to yield or submit to the Lord in each and every way we choose to take. By acknowledging His control, His superior knowledge and His goodness, we travel a path much less complicated by twists and turns. He makes our paths straight, unencumbered by lengthy unnecessary detours. We reach our destination in good time, or in His time. When we give way to Him rather than insisting on our own plan, we find He had a better idea all along!
I need to be reminded to yield. My first inclination is to make decisions on my own. And yielding my will to His is so often a struggle. Even knowing that my own understanding is limited, I stubbornly resist. I like being the one who makes the decisions. Trusting Him with all my heart is scary without having some measure of control. But He promises that when I do, He will make my paths straight, choosing the best way. No time will be lost in making U turns or encountering dead ends.
Thank you Lord, that I can fully trust Your heart of love for me!
Scripture for Today: I Thessalonians 5:11 “Therefore, encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.”
This added homemade sign in Scotland says, “Keep right on to the end of the road.” These are lyrics from a traditional Scottish song which goes on to say, “though the way be long, let your heart be strong.” There is good reason to continue on. This road leads to Kirkton Manor, an historic stone manor built into a wall. Even the three-acre-country gardens there make the trip well worth the effort!
Today’s verse tells us to encourage each other by reminders of who we are and what is ahead. In the middle of dark times we are children of the light and of the day (verse 5). We have the hope of our salvation (verse 8) and we have an incredible future ahead in living together with Him! (verse 10) It is these truths which encourage us to keep plodding on. There will be an end to what we are facing. There will be a destination that makes every heartache and trial worth it.
I do not like having disruptions to my routine or being inconvenienced in any way. My comfort is way too important to me. What small trials I face in comparison to those who are imprisoned for their faith! But I can be encouraged that in the face of any unknown earthly future, I can choose to focus on the heavenly one! I have no control over the current self quarantine that is being imposed. But there is an end in sight. There will be a point where I reach my destination. And though the way may seem long, it is the Lord who keeps my heart strong!
Lord, encourage me and make me an encouragement to others.
Photo © Jim Barton (cc-by-sa/2.0)
Scripture for Today: Matthew 5;13 “You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt has become tasteless, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled under foot by men.”
This State Trooper in Western New York had quite the story to tell! There on a snow covered road in a small town, this horse blocked his way and would not move! He had wandered away yet again from his owners. The trooper tried to lure him off the road with a hand full of alfalfa. But the horse would not budge, preferring instead to lick the salt off the hood of the car! Horses required two to four tablespoons of salt per day but that would normally come from a salt block.
Today’s verse tells us that as believers we are called the salt of the earth. We are to have an influence on those around us. Our tasty contribution to this world is to draw attention to the Father and His glory (verse 16). We sprinkle our surroundings with acts of love and kindness that point to Him. But we can lose that saltiness by living for our own comfort and pleasure. We can become tasteless by taking credit for the good things we have done rather than giving Him the praise that is due Him.
For me to be salt and an influence for Christ, I need to be out there in the world. Salt does no good sitting on the shelf with all the other salt shakers. But there is always the risk of losing my saltiness. Living to serve others is often not a comfortable way to live. I am faced everyday with the temptation to live entirely for myself.
Lord, keep me salty for You.
PHOTO CREDIT: https://bloximages.newyork1.vip.townnews.com/khq.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/4/80/48054c2a-5041-11ea-afad-fb2b43d6d280/5e486e97f1de1.image.png?resize=750%2C412
Scripture for Today: Psalm 89:1 “I will sing of the loving kindness of the Lord forever. To all generations I will make known Your faithfulness with my mouth.”
I am a careful driver but I have never been very comfortable using mirrors to drive. I do not know why. I just do not trust them as much as seeing something directly. There is a lot of neck turning when I am at the wheel! Many side mirrors have the warning; “Objects in mirror are closer than they appear.” Perhaps it is this warning that shakes my confidence in the image I am seeing.
Today’s verse proclaims the faithfulness of the Lord. This beautiful characteristic of our God is best seen when looking back. Many times it is not until the trial is over that we see the positives. It is often after the fact that we see God’s hand. His faithfulness brings us through, developing patience, making us more like Him. His faithfulness means we can count on His Word and His promises. His faithfulness brings about that “good” that Romans 8:28 describes.
Not everyone enjoys looking back. Quite frankly, some things are best forgotten. Reliving the negatives can be depressing. But in looking back I can see that the problem I deemed insurmountable while going through it, was not! His faithfulness was like that object so much closer than I realized! This past year He has been faithful. He has been faithful every year. I am confident He will be faithful next year! It is His nature. I can look back these last twelve months and pinpoint all the ways He has shown His faithfulness, not only to me but to my family and my friends. Regardless of any negatives, He makes looking back a joy!
Thank you Lord, for being faithful to me!
Scripture for Today: Hebrews 13:5 “Your conduct must be free from the love of money and you must be content with what you have, for He has said, ‘I will never leave you and I will never abandon you.'”
The classic cars are great for one very personal reason; they often have that bench-style seat! Instead of being separated from my Honey by bucket seats, I can snuggle up close. I have heard it said that one can see how long a couple has been married by the distance the wife puts between herself and the driver. Of course, the driver has not moved. But the wife would sometimes inch her way towards the door a little more each year!
In today’s verse Jesus promises never to leave us or abandon us. He does not move. His love remains constant. It is because of the promise of His presence and care that we can be free of money worries. Rather than loving money we love Him. Rather than looking for contentment elsewhere, we find it in His love.
There are times I feel very far from the Lord. I know He is there but I do not sense His presence. Without even being aware, I find I have inched toward that door. It has happened through my own neglect of His Word. Or I have simply let drop my conversations with Him. He has not moved. I have. Inching away from Him leads to feeling discontented. I start looking out the car window at all the things I think I should have. Because He has not moved, the solution is simple. Through His Word and through our conversations I come back to where He is. He waits for me and He promises to be there.
Thank you, Lord, that you never move!