Thursday Quote Day: Michael Kelley

This week’s “Thursday Quote Day” features another quote from author and speaker Michael Kelley:

“The ultimate measure of God’s love is not our health, wealth and prosperity: It’s the cross. That’s how we know God loves us.” (Michael Kelley Boring)

Sunday Devotional: Psalm 138

“I give you thanks, O Lord, with my whole heart;
    before the gods I sing your praise;
I bow down toward your holy temple
    and give thanks to your name for your steadfast love and your faithfulness,
    for you have exalted above all things
    your name and your word.
On the day I called, you answered me;
    my strength of soul you increased.

All the kings of the earth shall give you thanks, O Lord,
    for they have heard the words of your mouth,
and they shall sing of the ways of the Lord,
    for great is the glory of the Lord.
For though the Lord is high, he regards the lowly,
    but the haughty he knows from afar.

Though I walk in the midst of trouble,
    you preserve my life;
you stretch out your hand against the wrath of my enemies,
    and your right hand delivers me.
The Lord will fulfill his purpose for me;
    your steadfast love, O Lord, endures forever.
    Do not forsake the work of your hands.” (Psalm 138)

It is good to remember to give thanks.  This psalm is a great reminder of that.  David wrote this psalm and speaks not only to God’s love but also His faithfulness.  God is a also a preserver and a deliverer.  David cites many reasons to give thanks to the Lord.

We serve and follow the same God.  The Lord loves us and wants to preserve us.  He wants to deliver us and fulfill His purpose in us.  We have a lot to be thankful for in this regard.  So this week, let us give thanks with all our heart.  Let us trust that God will deliver us and preserve us through the midst of troubles that we face.  And let us share with others the love that God has given to us.

Thursday Quote Day: C.S. Lewis

This week’s “Thursday Quote Day” features another quote from author and theologian C.S. Lewis:

“There are no ordinary people. You have never talked to a mere mortal. Nations, cultures, arts, civilizations-these are mortal, and their life is to ours as the life of a gnat. But it is immortals whom we joke with, work with, marry, snub and exploit-immortal horrors or everlasting splendors. This does not mean that we are to be perpetually solemn. We must play. But our merriment must be of that kind (and it is, in fact, the merriest kind) which exists between people who have, from the outset, taken each other seriously-no flippancy, no superiority, no presumption.” (C.S. Lewis “The Weight of Glory”)

Sunday Devotional: Hebrews 11:8-10

“By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to a place that he was to receive as an inheritance. And he went out, not knowing where he was going.  By faith he went to live in the land of promise, as in a foreign land, living in tents with Isaac and Jacob, heirs with him of the same promise.  For he was looking forward to the city that has foundations, whose designer and builder is God.”

We all would love to know what is in store for us, what the future holds.  But sometimes God wants us to simply trust and follow Him.  Abraham is a great example of this.  He was told by God to go to a place that God had prepared for him.  But God didn’t tell Abraham where it was or how long it would take to get there.  God simply told Abraham to go and to have faith.  Abraham did just that.  He trusted God and picked up his life and followed God.

There may be seasons of life where it seems like there is no direction.  That there is no place of rest.  But God is faithful.  God is good.  And for those that follow Him, He has a place for us.  We have to keep following and keep trusting Him.

This week, let us remember God’s faithfulness to us as we continue to follow Him.  Let us remember that He is for our good.  And let us be like Abraham and follow God wherever He leads us.

Updated 2016 Book List

Here is an updated book list for books I’ve read so far this year.  I am ahead of my pace from last year which is a good thing.  Here’s the list:

Film, Faith and Philosophy:  Big Ideas on the Big Screen edited by R. Douglas Geivett and James S. Spiegel

Star Wars:  The Force Awakens by Alan Dean Foster

Reel Spirituality: Theology and Film in Dialogue by Robert K. Johnston

It:  How Churches and Leaders Can Get It and Keep It by Craig Groeschel

Called to Coach:  Reflections on Life, Faith and Football by Bobby Bowden with Mark Schlabach

Sunday Devotional: Habakkuk 2:1-3

“I will take my stand at my watchpost
    and station myself on the tower,
and look out to see what he will say to me,
    and what I will answer concerning my complaint.

And the Lord answered me:

“Write the vision;
    make it plain on tablets,
    so he may run who reads it.
For still the vision awaits its appointed time;
    it hastens to the end—it will not lie.
If it seems slow, wait for it;
    it will surely come; it will not delay.”  (Habakkuk 2:1-3)

There are times when we must wait.  God may want us to be patient in hearing from Him.  He may desire for us to learn in that time to wait on Him.  It may be that the appropriate time hasn’t arrived and we must wait for it to come.  Whatever it may be, sometimes we are to wait on the Lord.

The prophet Habakkuk knew this all to well.  He wrote about how He waited for God to speak to Him.  He stood watch waiting for God and was committed to wait no matter how long the wait was.  When God spoke to Habakkuk, He reassured Habbakuk that He was in control and that all things were going according to His plan.

It is hard to wait but God knows what He is doing.  He is in control.  We just need to trust Him that in His timing that what He wants done will be done.  This week, let us be like Habakkuk and set ourselves on the watchpost and be diligent in waiting on the Lord.

Thursday Quote Day: Merle Haggard

For this week’s “Thursday Quote Day” and in honor of the passing of Merle Haggard, here is a verse from one of his famous songs:

“Everybody sings the blues sometimes
And everybody knows the tune
And everybody knows the way I’m feelin’
‘Cause everybody’s had the blues” (Merle Haggard “Everybody’s Had The Blues”)

Sunday Devotional: Colossians 1:3-8

“We always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you,  since we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of the love that you have for all the saints,  because of the hope laid up for you in heaven. Of this you have heard before in the word of the truth, the gospel,  which has come to you, as indeed in the whole world it is bearing fruit and increasing—as it also does among you, since the day you heard it and understood the grace of God in truth,  just as you learned it from Epaphras our beloved fellow servant. He is a faithful minister of Christ on your behalf and has made known to us your love in the Spirit.”  (Colossians 1:3-8)

Encouraging one another is so important.  Paul knew this very well.  He was greatly encouraged by the Colossians and their faith.  They heard the Gospel, received it and shared it with others.  They trusted in Jesus and was faithful in following Him and their testimony showed that.  Paul loved to hear this news and encouraged Him to continue to be faithful.

Life is tough.  There are definitely times where there are struggles and hardships.  There are times when one gets beat down.  But the great thing is that God is there.  There is that hope that comes from trusting in Him.  No matter what, He’s there.  I’m grateful for that and I want others to experience that as well.

This week let us be thankful for God’s faithfulness.  Let us be thankful of the hope of salvation.  And let us share that hope with others.