Show Mercy to Receive Mercy

from my devotions:

Matthew 6:14-15
For if ye forgive men their trespasses,
your heavenly Father will also forgive you:
But if ye forgive not men their trespasses,
neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.

He who shows mercy to men receives mercy from God.

. . .extract from Mason’s Self-knowledge, page 248, 1755.

“Athenodorus, the philosopher by reason of his old age,
begged leave to retire from the court of Augustus,
which the emperor granted.
In his compliments of leave, he said,
‘Remember, Caesar, whenever thou art angry,
that thou say or do nothing before
thou hast distinctly repeated to thyself
the twenty-four letters of the alphabet.’
On which Caesar caught him by the hand, and said,
‘I have need of thy presence still:’
and kept him a year longer.
This was excellent advice from a heathen;
but a Christian may prescribe to himself a wiser rule.
When thou art angry,
answer not till thou hast repeated
the fifth petition of our Lord’s prayer –
Forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors:
and our Lord’s comment upon it –
For if ye forgive not men their trespasses,
neither will your heavenly father forgive your trespasses.”
Clarke’s Commentary

I liked the reminder
when I would feel hurt or misunderstood, or _____
and my default is to murmur, complain or take on an attitude.
Stop and give the incident to God’s keeping.
My peace is restored
and compassion can be extended.
God’s way is best.

Keep All My Commandments Always

Deuteronomy 5:1
And Moses called all Israel,
and said unto them, Hear, O Israel,
the statutes and judgments
which I speak in your ears this day,
that ye may learn them,
and keep, and do them.

1. God speaks to the people.
2. The people are called to hear what God speaks.
3. To learn what they heard, that they may be thoroughly instructed in the will of God.
4. To keep God’s testimonies ever in mind, and to treasure them up in a believing and upright heart.
5. That they might do them – obey the whole will of God, taking his word for the invariable rule of their conduct. Should not all these points be kept in view by every Christian assembly? Clarke’s Commentary

Deuteronomy 5:33
Ye shall walk in all the ways
which the LORD your God hath commanded you,
that ye may live,
and that it may be well with you,
and that ye may prolong your days
in the land which ye shall possess.

God never gave a commandment to man which he did not design that he should obey.
That ye may enjoy life,  . . .that it may be well with you  . . .God will prosper you in all things essential to the welfare of your bodies, and the salvation of your souls.
That ye may arrive at a good old age, and grow more and more meet for the inheritance among the saints in light. Clarke’s Commentary

Deuteronomy 5:29
O that there were such an heart in them,
that they would fear me,
and keep all my commandments always,
that it might be well with them,
and with their children for ever!

Today’s Thought – Let Love Shine

 

John 13:34.
A new commandment I give unto you,
That ye love one another;
as I have loved you,
that ye also love one another.

 

Let love through all my conduct shine,
An image fair, though faint, of Thine;
Thus let me His disciple prove,
Who came to manifest Thy love.
Simon Browne.

When the world looks at me do they see Jesus ? . . . Today

 

Today’s Thought – Our Great Helper in Prayer

Hebrews 4:14-16

Seeing then that we have a great high Priest…
Jesus, the Son of God,
let us hold fast our profession.
Let us come boldly unto the throne of grace,
that we may obtain mercy,
and find grace to help in time of need

 

Our great Helper in prayer is the Lord Jesus Christ,
our Advocate with the Father, our Great High Priest,
whose chief ministry for us
these centuries has been intercession and prayer.
He it is who takes our imperfect petitions from our hands,
cleanses them from their defects,
corrects their faults,
and then claims their answer from His Father on His own account
and through His all-atoning merits and righteousness.

Brother, are you fainting in prayer?
Look up.
Your blessed Advocate has already claimed your answer,
and you would grieve and disappoint Him
if you were to give up the conflict in the very moment
when victory is on its way to meet you.
He has gone in for you into the inner chamber,
and already holds up your name upon the palms of His hands;
and the messenger, which is to bring you your blessing,
is now on his way,
and the Spirit is only waiting your trust
to whisper in your heart the echo of the answer from the throne,
“It is done.”
–A. B. Simpson

Lord, Help my unbelief . . .Today

Published in: on July 27, 2017 at 8:00 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Thy Father Speaks

Psalm 46:5
God is in the midst of her;
she shall not be moved:
God shall help her,
and that right early.

O troubled soul, beneath the rod,
Thy Father speaks, be still, be still;
Learn to be silent unto God,
And let Him mould thee to His will.
O praying soul, be still, be still,
He cannot break His plighted Word;
Sink down into His blessed will,
And wait in patience on the Lord.
O waiting soul, be still, be strong,
And though He tarry, trust and wait;
Doubt not, He will not wait too long,
Fear not, He will not come too late.

Published in: on July 19, 2017 at 4:50 am  Leave a Comment  
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Leave That to Me

Hollyhocks

When He giveth quietness,
who then can make trouble?
Job 34:29

I’ve many a cross to take up now,
And many left behind;
But present troubles move me not,
Nor shake my quiet mind.
And what may be to-morrow’s cross
I never seek to find;
My Father says, “Leave that to me,
And keep a quiet mind.”
ANON.

None of these things move me.–Acts 20:24

Published in: on July 17, 2017 at 5:47 am  Leave a Comment  
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“The Furnace of Affliction.”

“I have chosen thee in the furnace of affliction
Isaiah 48:10

Does not the Word come like a soft shower,
assuaging the fury of the flame?

Yes, is it not an asbestos armor,
against which the heat has no power?

Let the affliction come–God has chosen me.

Poverty, thou mayest stride in at my door;
but God is in the house already,
and He has chosen me.

Sickness, thou mayest intrude;
but I have a balsam ready–
God has chosen me.

Whatever befall me in this vale of tears,
I know that He has chosen me.

Fear not, Christian; Jesus is with thee.

In all thy fiery trials,
His presence is both thy comfort and safety.
He will never leave one
whom He has chosen for His own.

“Fear not, for I am with thee,”
is His sure word of promise
to His chosen ones
in “the furnace of affliction.”
–C. H. Spurgeon

No “Too Lates” With God

I called upon him,
but he gave me no answer
Song of Solomon 5:6

The Lord, when He hath given great faith,
hath been known to try it by long delayings.
He has suffered His servants’ voices
to echo in their ears as from a brazen sky.
They have knocked at the golden gate,
but it has remained unmovable,
as though it were rusted upon its hinges.
Like Jeremiah, they have cried,

“Thou hast covered thyself with a cloud,
that our prayer should not pass through.”

Thus have true saints continued
long in patient waiting without reply,
not because their prayers were not vehement,
nor because they were unaccepted,
but because it so pleased Him who is a Sovereign,
and who gives according to His own pleasure.
If it pleases Him to bid our patience exercise itself,
shall He not do as He will with His own!

No prayer is lost.
Praying breath was never spent in vain.
There is no such thing as prayer
unanswered or unnoticed by God,
and some things that we count refusals or denials
are simply delays.
–H. Bonar

When Thou Goest . . .

When thou goest,
thy way shall be opened up
before thee step by step
Proverbs 4:12, free translation

The Lord never builds a bridge of faith
except under the feet of the faith-filled traveler.
If He builds the bridge a rod ahead,
it would not be a bridge of faith.
That which is of sight is not of faith.

There is a self-opening gate
which is sometimes used in country roads.
It stands fast and firm across the road
as a traveler approaches it.
If he stops before he gets to it,
it will not open.
But if he will drive right at it,
his wagon wheels press the springs below the roadway,
and the gate swings back to let him through.
He must push right on at the closed gate,
or it will continue to be closed.

This illustrates the way to pass
every barrier on the road of duty.
Whether it is a river, a gate, or a mountain,
all the child of Jesus has to do is to go for it.
If it is a river, it will dry up
when you put your feet in its waters.
If it is a gate, it will fly open
when you are near enough to it,
and are still pushing on.
If it is a mountain,
it will be lifted up and cast into a sea
when you come squarely up, without flinching,
to where you thought it was.

Is there a great barrier across your path of duty just now?

Just go for it,
in the name of the Lord,
and it won’t be there.
–Henry Clay Trumbull

Proverbs 4:11-12 KJV
I have taught thee in the way of wisdom;
I have led thee in right paths.
When thou goest,
thy steps shall not be straitened;
and when thou runnest,
thou shalt not stumble.

What Shall We Say. . . If God Be For Us?

Romans 8:31
What shall we then say to these things?
If God be for us,
who can be against us?

As if he had said:
What comfort may we derive from these doctrines?
God has called us all to holiness, and to love to him,
which is the principle of holiness.
We are persecuted and despised,
it is true, and we may be more so;
but, as God has called us to love him,
and all things work together for good to them that love him;
and, as his covenant with Abraham,
while he was in his Gentile state,
shows his gracious purpose towards us Gentiles,
whom he has foreknown,
who have been objects of his gracious foreknowledge,
as well as the Jews,
and who have now the fullest proof that we were so,
by his sending us the Gospel, and showing us, in it,
that if the Israelites were to be a holy priesthood, a royal nation,
we are no less favored, as he has predestinated,
from the beginning determined,
that we should be conformed to the image of his Son,
who is to be the first-born among many brethren,
the head and chief of all converted Jews and Gentiles,
and, in order to our final salvation,
has called, invited us to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ,
has justified those who do believe,
and has glorified, highly honored,
and adorned them with innumerable gifts and graces,
and, if they continue to possess that faith which worketh by love,
will bring them, both body and soul, to his eternal glory,
their bodies being made like unto his glorious body:
– seeing, therefore, all these things are so,
what comfort in our tribulations shall we derive from them?
– Why this:
If God be for us, who can be against us?
He who is infinitely wise
has undertaken to direct us:
He who is infinitely powerful
has undertaken to protect us:
He who is infinitely good
has undertaken to save us.
What cunning, strength, or malice,
can prevail against his wisdom, power, and goodness?
None.
Therefore we are safe who love God;
and not only shall sustain no essential damage
by the persecutions of ungodly men,
but even these things work together for our good.
Clarke’s Commentary

Published in: on July 9, 2017 at 7:55 am  Leave a Comment  
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‘Waiting is one of the great arts.’ Allingham

Wait on the LORD:
be of good courage,
and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait,
I say, on the LORD.
Psalms 27:14

Is this what my waiting looks like?

First week: Hopeful, confident, cheery

Second week: optimistic, philosophical, edgy

Third week: discouraged, depressed, snarly

Fourth week: Have mercy! Hurry up please it’s time!!!!!
I don’t care what happens just let the torment be over!

Fifth week: I don’t want to talk about it.
Don’t you dare tell me the Universe knows best.

Indeterminable time in the future: Oh my God. You’re kidding! Really!
You wouldn’t joke about this, would you? I don’t believe it!
thankyouthankyouthankyou!!!!!

Romancing the Ordinary, Sarah Ban Breathnach

My soul, wait thou only upon God;
for my expectation is from him.
Psalms 62:5

But if we hope for that we see not,
then do we with patience wait for it.
Romans 8:25

Fill My Cup, Lord. . .


Fill my cup, Lord.
I hold it up to you with outstretched hands.
My heart parched and thirsty for your living water.

Fill ,my cup with your love, Lord.
Help me to feel your hands holding mine,
feel your arms around me,
feel your love empowering me.
Fill me with quietness and encouragement and trust.

Help me to live for you when trials, difficulties,
and storms hit me and those I love so deeply.
Help me not to give up when giving up seems easier.
Help me to trust you when I don’t feel like trusting anymore.

When I know pain, fill my cup with prayer.
Teach me the secrets of service and surrender.

Fill my cup, Lord, I lift it up to you.
Lift me up to do your will with love and sacrifice,
Never forgetting what you sacrificed for me—
Your Son.
My Messiah.
My Lord Jesus Christ.

Help me, Lord, to accept where I am now.
Help me to know I’m not stuck forever in my circumstances.
Help me remember that the windows do open
and that fresh breezes do blow in
and that living water forever flows
and that those who ask receive.

I’m asking now, Lord.
I’m holding my cup in my hands.
And I’m asking you to fill it . . .with you.
Fill my cup with
God the Father,
God the Son,
and God the Holy Spirit,

And when my cup springs a leak,
As earthen vessels are prone to do.
Then I’ll just have to ask again,
Trusting in your love
To fill me again . . .
and thanking you!
Amen
Emilie Barnes, Fill My Cup, Lord

Wherein ye greatly rejoice,
though now for a season,
if need be, ye are in heaviness
through manifold temptations: T
hat the trial of your faith,
being much more precious
than of gold that perisheth,
though it be tried with fire,
might be found unto praise and honour and glory
at the appearing of Jesus Christ:
Whom having not seen, ye love;
in whom, though now ye see him not,
yet believing, ye rejoice
with joy unspeakable and full of glory:
Receiving the end of your faith,
even the salvation of your souls.
Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober,
and hope to the end for the grace
that is to be brought unto you
at the revelation of Jesus Christ;
I Peter 1:6-9, 13

The “Still” Lesson

God always has a chair waiting for a visit.

Wait on the LORD:
be of good courage,
and he shall strengthen thine heart:
wait, I say, on the LORD
Psalms 27:14

I heard a Quaker lady
who had to spend half an hour every day
sitting quiet and doing nothing
calling it her ‘still’ lesson.
I wish we could enjoy
such a half-hour daily in God’s presence;
our still lesson would be one
of the most useful lessons of the day.

“Be still and know that I am God.”
Psalms 46:10

In times of difficulty be still!
Thine enemies are plotting thine over throw!
They laugh at thy strong confidence!
But hast thou not heard His voice saying;
”This is the way, walk ye in it” Isaiah 30:21?
Then leave Him to deal with thy foes
from whatever quarters they come.
He is thy rock, and rocks do not shake.
He is thy high tower,
and a high tower cannot be flooded.

Thou needest mercy,
and to Him belongeth mercy.
Do not run hither and thither in panic!
Just quietly wait, hushing thy soul,
as He did the fears of His friends
on the eve of Gethsemane and Calvary

“Rest in the Lord, wait patiently for Him”
Psalms 37:7

Be still, for He will not rest,
until He hast finished the thing this day.

Published in: on June 23, 2017 at 4:03 am  Leave a Comment  
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Reasons for Joy

Rejoice in the Lord always.
Again I will say, rejoice!
Philippians 4:4 NKJV

“How’s life?” someone asks.
And we who’ve been resurrected from the dead say,
“Well, things could be better.”
Or “Couldn’t get a parking place.”
Or “My parents won’t let me move to Hawaii.”
Or “People won’t leave me alone
so I can finish my sermon on unselfishness”. . .

Are you so focused on what you don’t have
that your are blind to what you do?

You have a ticket to heaven no thief can take,
an eternal home no divorce can break.
Every sin of your life has been cast to the sea.
Every mistake you’ve made is nailed to the tree.
You’re blood-bought and heaven-made.
A child of God—forever saved.

So be grateful, joyful—for isn’t it true?
What you don’t have is much less than what you do.

But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven,
where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt,
and where thieves do not break through nor steal:
For where your treasure is,
there will your heart be also.
Matthew 6:20-21

Published in: on June 20, 2017 at 3:55 am  Comments (1)  
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Only Seeds

the Farmer/Grandpa teaching young sowers.

I read a fable about a man who was browsing
in a store when he made the shocking discovery
that God was behind the sales counter.

So the man walked over and asked,
“What are you selling?”

God replied,
“What does your heart desire?”

The man said,
“I want happiness, peace of mind,
and freedom from fear…for me and the whole world.”

God smiled and said,
“I don’t sell fruit here. Only seeds.”

Luke 8:5-8 A sower went out to sow his seed: and as he sowed, some fell by the way side; and it was trodden down, and the fowls of the air devoured it. And some fell upon a rock; and as soon as it was sprung up, it withered away, because it lacked moisture. And some fell among thorns; and the thorns sprang up with it, and choked it.And other fell on good ground, and sprang up, and bare fruit an hundredfold. And when he had said these things, he cried, He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.

Luke 8:11 Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God.

Luke 8:12-15 Those by the way side are they that hear; then cometh the devil, and taketh away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved. They on the rock are they, which, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, which for a while believe, and in time of temptation fall away. And that which fell among thorns are they, which, when they have heard, go forth, and are choked with cares and riches and pleasures of this life, and bring no fruit to perfection. But that on the good ground are they, which in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep it, and bring forth fruit with patience.

Published in: on June 19, 2017 at 4:44 am  Comments (1)  
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