This morning as I scanned thru the Bing newsfeed the one article that hit me most was another cathedral that was on fire in France. I made me think of Notre Dame’s fire earlier and then this new fire now in Nantes. It made me wonder what was going on and what these signs might me about the times we are living in. It made me wonder about my earlier post about the churches where we learned about their state or condition and their need to pursue God. When we take into consideration that God calls out His people (2 Chronicles 7:14) when there is a problem going on and calling for them to step up, for them to step into the gap, for them to take action in order to save the world. The Christians were scattered all over the world in the beginning and it was not only on purpose but also for a purpose that the world would get to hear the Good News of Jesus and be saved. So all my brothers and sisters in Christ out there, what is it we need to be doing to help save our world? 2 2 Chronicles 7:14 gives us our first direction. Join me in taking hold of 2 Chronicles 7:14. God calls all of us to humble ourselves. He need to walk in humility first. God then calls us to pray and seek His face, spend time with God and asking the Holy Spirit to reveal to us, bring us revelation to what it is we need to repent of and ask God to forgive us of and to turn from our wicked ways and back towards God. He promises to hear our prayers and heal our lands.
It is not in our strength but in God’s strength that things will be turned around. It is not in our strength but rather in our weakness that God’s strength is revealed, His strength through the resurrection power of Jesus. So don’t withdraw nor fear, instead let’s stand firm on the rock that is Jesus Christ. Let’s put on the full armor of God. Let’s take this seriously because there is a serious problem right now and it needs us to step up and step in so that in and through it all God will receive the praise, the honor, and the glory in Jesus’s name.
10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 For 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. 13 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.— Ephesians 6:10-18
So let’s be prepared! Let’s be prepared in and out of season to give a reason for the hope that is within us! Let’s be prepared for the day when we are called before the king or leaders, not worrying about what we will say but being so prepared and so filled with the Holy Spirit that we will be able to speak what the Holy Spirit gives us to say! Let’s be prepared for the attacks of the enemy by filling ourselves with the truth and the hope that comes from God while being lead, directed, and correct by the Holy Spirit! Let’s be prepared for we run this race to win! Let’s be prepared so that we fight this spiritual battle to win the victory!
We need to be engaged! There is a spiritual war taking place and so we need to be engaged! We can’t just pretend like everything is ok and nothing is going on while sitting at the beach, while in reality there is a battle taking place, there is a war for the souls of humanity. And we have role to play! I remember when I was in Cleansing Stream class and one of my classmates who is an artist shared a story about a revelation similar to the beach one I called out earlier and how the incredible painting he made was the outcome of the divine encounter. I am blessed enough to have been able to get a copy or print of that painting of the Spiritual Warrior that still hangs on my wall and reminds me daily of that truth and that story. The symbolism of that masterpiece is incredible. We can’t get too comfortable and lose track of the reality that there is a war taking place right now and there are so many people’s lives at risk. In the midst of a war taking place around you on the beaches of Normandy, I wouldn’t think we would be pulling out our beach blanket and chair and be catching a few rays. Try looking up pictures of the beaches of Normandy during the war. Imagine someone sitting there in the midst of the battle, totally oblivious to the reality of what was going on around them. Unfortunately there are a lot of people who are doing that today in the spiritual realm.
As I was reflecting on the armor of God, I remembered a post someone had on the practical strategies and found: 30 Practical Strategies to Put on the Full Armor of God.
So where are you at today? Sitting at the beach in the midst of a war? Sitting at the beach in the midst of a pandemic? Sitting at the beach in the midst of a riot? Sitting at the beach in the midst of a protest? Do you realize what is going on? Do you realize what you are supposed or should be doing? Do you realize your purpose and your role? Have you gotten prepared? Have you put on the full armor of God? Are you standing firm on the rock of Jesus Christ? Are you ready to humble yourself and pray? Are you ready to turn from your wicked ways? Are you ready for God to accomplish His promise because you have been faithful and forgive your sins and heal your land?
If not then would you consider starting today? If yes then lets get prepared, put on the full armor and lean in on God rather than your own understanding, acknowledging Him in all our ways, so that He will make our paths straight!
Let’s be drawing closer to God! Let’s be drawing closer to our families! Let’s be drawing closer to one another! Let’s claim the victory Jesus has already won!
The 49 week challenge – Day 200
With June in the rear view mirror, let’s share our takeaways from today’s reading! Did you catch and promises to trust? Did you catch any commands to obey? Did you catch any truths to embrace? Did you catch any warnings to heed? Did you catch any encouragement to rest in? What did you learn about God? What did you learn about yourself? What did you learn about the world? What verse stood out most to you today?
Today’s reading from God’s Word – the Bible comes to us from:
- We need to have a ministry
- We need to renounce secret and shameful ways
- We need to light shine in the darkness
- We need to allow the light of Jesus shine in our hearts
- We need to give God all the glory
- So many great nuggets, I will just post God’s Word:
- ‘Therefore, since through God’s mercy we have this ministry, we do not lose heart. Rather, we have renounced secret and shameful ways; we do not use deception, nor do we distort the word of God. On the contrary, by setting forth the truth plainly we commend ourselves to everyone’s conscience in the sight of God. And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. For what we preach is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake. For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ. But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body. For we who are alive are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that his life may also be revealed in our mortal body. So then, death is at work in us, but life is at work in you. It is written: “I believed; therefore I have spoken.” Since we have that same spirit of faith, we also believe and therefore speak, because we know that the one who raised the Lord Jesus from the dead will also raise us with Jesus and present us with you to himself. All this is for your benefit, so that the grace that is reaching more and more people may cause thanksgiving to overflow to the glory of God. Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.’ — 2 Corinthians 4:1-18
- Today’s reading continues with:
- ‘I will exalt you, Lord , for you lifted me out of the depths and did not let my enemies gloat over me. Lord my God, I called to you for help, and you healed me. You, Lord , brought me up from the realm of the dead; you spared me from going down to the pit. Sing the praises of the Lord , you his faithful people; praise his holy name. For his anger lasts only a moment, but his favor lasts a lifetime; weeping may stay for the night, but rejoicing comes in the morning. When I felt secure, I said, “I will never be shaken.” Lord , when you favored me, you made my royal mountain stand firm; but when you hid your face, I was dismayed. To you, Lord , I called; to the Lord I cried for mercy: “What is gained if I am silenced, if I go down to the pit? Will the dust praise you? Will it proclaim your faithfulness? Hear, Lord , and be merciful to me; Lord , be my help.” You turned my wailing into dancing; you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy, that my heart may sing your praises and not be silent. Lord my God, I will praise you forever.’ — Psalms 30:1-12
- We can see the connection between each of today’s readings, it continues with:
- ‘Do not fret because of those who are evil or be envious of those who do wrong; for like the grass they will soon wither, like green plants they will soon die away. Trust in the Lord and do good; dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture. Take delight in the Lord , and he will give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord ; trust in him and he will do this: He will make your righteous reward shine like the dawn, your vindication like the noonday sun. Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him; do not fret when people succeed in their ways, when they carry out their wicked schemes. Refrain from anger and turn from wrath; do not fret—it leads only to evil. For those who are evil will be destroyed, but those who hope in the Lord will inherit the land. A little while, and the wicked will be no more; though you look for them, they will not be found. But the meek will inherit the land and enjoy peace and prosperity. The wicked plot against the righteous and gnash their teeth at them; but the Lord laughs at the wicked, for he knows their day is coming. The wicked draw the sword and bend the bow to bring down the poor and needy, to slay those whose ways are upright. But their swords will pierce their own hearts, and their bows will be broken. Better the little that the righteous have than the wealth of many wicked; for the power of the wicked will be broken, but the Lord upholds the righteous. The blameless spend their days under the Lord ’s care, and their inheritance will endure forever. In times of disaster they will not wither; in days of famine they will enjoy plenty. But the wicked will perish: Though the Lord ’s enemies are like the flowers of the field, they will be consumed, they will go up in smoke. The wicked borrow and do not repay, but the righteous give generously; those the Lord blesses will inherit the land, but those he curses will be destroyed. The Lord makes firm the steps of the one who delights in him; though he may stumble, he will not fall, for the Lord upholds him with his hand. I was young and now I am old, yet I have never seen the righteous forsaken or their children begging bread. They are always generous and lend freely; their children will be a blessing. Turn from evil and do good; then you will dwell in the land forever. For the Lord loves the just and will not forsake his faithful ones. Wrongdoers will be completely destroyed ; the offspring of the wicked will perish. The righteous will inherit the land and dwell in it forever. The mouths of the righteous utter wisdom, and their tongues speak what is just. The law of their God is in their hearts; their feet do not slip. The wicked lie in wait for the righteous, intent on putting them to death; but the Lord will not leave them in the power of the wicked or let them be condemned when brought to trial. Hope in the Lord and keep his way. He will exalt you to inherit the land; when the wicked are destroyed, you will see it. I have seen a wicked and ruthless man flourishing like a luxuriant native tree, but he soon passed away and was no more; though I looked for him, he could not be found. Consider the blameless, observe the upright; a future awaits those who seek peace. But all sinners will be destroyed; there will be no future for the wicked. The salvation of the righteous comes from the Lord ; he is their stronghold in time of trouble. The Lord helps them and delivers them; he delivers them from the wicked and saves them, because they take refuge in him.’ — Psalms 37:1-40
- Today’s devotional concludes with this last Psalm:
- ‘I love the Lord , for he heard my voice; he heard my cry for mercy. Because he turned his ear to me, I will call on him as long as I live. The cords of death entangled me, the anguish of the grave came over me; I was overcome by distress and sorrow. Then I called on the name of the Lord : “ Lord , save me!” The Lord is gracious and righteous; our God is full of compassion. The Lord protects the unwary; when I was brought low, he saved me. Return to your rest, my soul, for the Lord has been good to you. For you, Lord , have delivered me from death, my eyes from tears, my feet from stumbling, that I may walk before the Lord in the land of the living. I trusted in the Lord when I said, “I am greatly afflicted”; in my alarm I said, “Everyone is a liar.” What shall I return to the Lord for all his goodness to me? I will lift up the cup of salvation and call on the name of the Lord . I will fulfill my vows to the Lord in the presence of all his people. Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his faithful servants. Truly I am your servant, Lord ; I serve you just as my mother did; you have freed me from my chains. I will sacrifice a thank offering to you and call on the name of the Lord . I will fulfill my vows to the Lord in the presence of all his people, in the courts of the house of the Lord — in your midst, Jerusalem. Praise the Lord .’ — Psalms 116:1-19
As day 200 of 2020 begins, I would hate to miss giving the opportunity to anyone who hasn’t received Jesus into their lives as their Lord and Savior an opportunity to make the decision this early into 2020 and the blessing to get to live out the rest of 2020 in that power and that truth and that hope.
If you would like to receive Jesus as your Lord and Savior, why not join me in this prayer?
“Dear God, I know that I am a sinner and there is nothing that I can do to save myself. I confess my complete helplessness to forgive my own sin or to work my way to heaven. At this moment I trust Christ alone as the One who bore my sin when He died on the cross. I believe that He did all that will ever be necessary for me to stand in your holy presence. I thank you that Christ was raised from the dead as a guarantee of my own resurrection. As best as I can, I now transfer my trust to Him. I am grateful that He has promised to receive me despite my many sins and failures. Father, I take you at your word. I thank you that I can face death now that you are my Savior. Thank you for the assurance that you will walk with me through the deep valley. Thank you for hearing this prayer. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.”
—The Sinner’s Prayer
Did you pray with me? Would you be willing to leave me a comment so that I can pray with and for you about such an incredible decision? Or if you don’t feel comfortable leaving a comment on my blog, why not email or text me instead?