What if something gets in the way? What if something resists you? What if you have to work for it? Are you willing to work for the blessing when it is being contested?
Don’t be discouraged! Don’t give up! Don’t allow resistance to keep you from achieving what God has planned! The ride gets the bumpiest right before you break thru the speed of sound barrier, if you stopped because it was bumpy you would never get to experience mach.
Take hold of God’s promises! Believe them and put your trust in God as you press in and press forward! Yes in this world we will have troubles, but we can take heart because Jesus has overcome the world! We can consider it pure joy when we face trials of many kinds because it will build up our faith, so we must persevere till the end so that we can reach that place of completeness.
So today choose to compete! Go for it! Press on towards the goal that you may win!
No Blessing Goes Uncontested — Day 94: Bible In One Year 2017
Devotional, Psalm 41:1-6, Luke 9:57-62, Luke 10:1-24, Deuteronomy 1, Deuteronomy 2:1-23
1. Blessings contested by trouble, sickness and slander … Psalm 41:1-6
Blessings on those who care for the poor
1Blessed are those who have regard for the weak; the Lord delivers them in times of trouble. 2The Lord protects and preserves them—they are counted among the blessed in the land—he does not give them over to the desire of their foes. 3The Lord sustains them on their sickbed and restores them from their bed of illness. –from Psalm 41
Contested by trouble, sickness and slander
1Blessed are those who have regard for the weak; the Lord delivers them in times of trouble. 2The Lord protects and preserves them—they are counted among the blessed in the land—he does not give them over to the desire of their foes. 3The Lord sustains them on their sickbed and restores them from their bed of illness. 4I said, “Have mercy on me, Lord; heal me, for I have sinned against you.” 5My enemies say of me in malice, “When will he die and his name perish?” 6When one of them comes to see me, he speaks falsely, while his heart gathers slander; then he goes out and spreads it around. –from Psalm 41
2. Blessings contested by Satan and demonic powers … Luke 9:57-10:24
Blessings of following Jesus
23Then he turned to his disciples and said privately, “Blessed are the eyes that see what you see. 24For I tell you that many prophets and kings wanted to see what you see but did not see it, and to hear what you hear but did not hear it.” –from Luke 10
58Jesus replied, “Foxes have dens and birds have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head.”
59He said to another man, “Follow me.”
But he replied, “Lord, first let me go and bury my father.”
60Jesus said to him, “Let the dead bury their own dead, but you go and proclaim the kingdom of God.”
61Still another said, “I will follow you, Lord; but first let me go back and say goodbye to my family.”
62Jesus replied, “No one who puts a hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God.” –from Luke 9
2He told them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field. –from Luke 10
9Heal the sick who are there and tell them, ‘The kingdom of God has come near to you.’ — from Luke 10
17The seventy-two returned with joy and said, “Lord, even the demons submit to us in your name.” –from Luke 10
21At that time Jesus, full of joy through the Holy Spirit, said, “I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children. Yes, Father, for this is what you were pleased to do. –from Luke 10
Contested by Satan and demonic powers
3Go! I am sending you out like lambs among wolves. –from Luke 10
12For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. –from Ephesians 6
17The seventy-two returned with joy and said, “Lord, even the demons submit to us in your name.”
18He replied, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. 19I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you. 20However, do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.” –from Luke 10
3. Blessings contested by problems, burdens and disputes … Deuteronomy 1:1-2:23
Blessings in the wilderness years
Quote from today’s devotional…
Are you going through hard times at the moment? Do you feel like you are in a wilderness period of your life?
Sometimes there seems to be a long delay between the promise of God and the fulfilment of that promise. What do we do while we are waiting for God to do what he has promised to do?
During the wilderness years, your faith is tested. Learn to trust God, seek his presence and worship him when life is hard.
Deuteronomy is one of the longest sermons ever preached. It is certainly the longest sermon in the Bible and the last preached by Moses.
In the book of Deuteronomy we read of Moses’ parting instructions to the people. Here Moses reiterates the law God had given the people, retransmitting God’s ways for a new generation. A key theme is ‘the land’, which is perhaps paralleled in the New Testament by the blessings of the ‘kingdom of God’, which come through being in Christ and living under God’s rule and reign.
The Bible is the story of God’s people, God’s blessing and God’s rule. You experience God’s blessing when you are living under God’s rule. At the start of Deuteronomy, we are reminded about God’s blessings to his people in the past, present and future.
First, regarding the past, Moses said, ‘The Lord your God carried you, as a father carries his son… The Lord your God has blessed you in all the work of your hands. He has watched over your journey through this vast desert. These forty years the Lord your God has been with you, and you have not lacked anything’ (1:31; 2:7).
Second, concerning the present, Moses reminds them of the ways in which God has been faithful to his promises to Abraham: ‘The Lord your God has increased your numbers so that today you are as many as the stars in the sky’ (1:10). Four times in the opening chapter we discover that God is giving his people the land of Canaan (vv.8,20,21,25). It is a gift of undeserved grace to God’s people – much as it is pure grace that you and I can have a relationship with God through Jesus.
Third, in relation to the future, Moses spoke of all the blessings God will give to his people. He prayed, ‘May the Lord, the God of your ancestors, increase you a thousand times and bless you as he has promised!’ (v.11). You will increasingly experience God’s blessing as you continue to live under God’s rule.
–from Day 94: Bible In One Year 2017
Contested by problems, burdens and disputes
Quote from today’s devotional…
Yet alongside all these blessings Moses also highlights a series of problems, burdens and disputes (v.12). God said, ‘You have stayed long enough at this mountain… See, I have given you this land. Go in and take possession of the land’ (vv.6–8). It was only eleven days’ journey but it had taken them forty years! They had developed a wilderness mentality, and allowed themselves to be overcome by fear and discouragement (v.21), grumbling (v.27), loss of heart (v.28) and opposition (v.26 onwards).
Now the time had come to ‘get moving’ (v.7, MSG). Yet Moses did not promise that they would be free of problems. In fact, Moses talked about ‘your enemies’ (v.42). They were going to have many battles ahead and much opposition. The key is to follow the Lord wholeheartedly (v.36b).
We also need leadership and organisation. Moses told them to choose ‘wise, understanding and respected’ people (v.13) and then to delegate. Choosing the right people is the key to delegation and will avoid the need to micromanage. As General George Patton said, ‘Never tell people how to do things. Tell them what to do and they will surprise you with their ingenuity.’ Delegation involves putting others in charge but being willing to take ultimate responsibility (vv.9–18).
Never allow opposition to put you off. Moses said, ‘Do not be terrified; do not be afraid of them. The Lord your God, who is going before you, will fight for you’ (vv.29–30).
–from Day 94: Bible In One Year 2017