How to deal with disappointment, painful and disheartening news.

How to deal with disappointment, painful and disheartening news.

Matthew 1: Joseph Accepts JESUS as His SON

18 This is how the birth of JESUS the MESSIAH came about: HIS mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be pregnant through the HOLY SPIRIT.19 Because Joseph her husband was faithful to the law, and yet did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly.

20 But after he had considered this, an angel of the LORD appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the HOLY SPIRIT.21 She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name JESUS, because HE will save HIS people from their sins.”

22 All this took place to fulfil what the LORD had said through the prophet:23 “The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him IMMANUEL” (which means “GOD with us”).

24 When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the LORD had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife.25 But he did not consummate their marriage until she gave birth to a son. And he gave HIM the name JESUS.

To find examples of wise, godly reactions to disappointment, you’re more likely to turn to Psalms than to Matthew. But the very first chapter in the New Testament tells the story of an upright man’s reaction to painful and disheartening news.

Joseph—JESUS’ earthly father—was a righteous person. A godly man wants a wife who shares his desire to honour and obey the LORD, and Scripture indicates that Mary was exactly that sort of woman (Luke 1: 45 Blessed is she who has believed that the LORD would fulfil HIS promises to her!”

Mary’s Song

46 And Mary said: “My soul glorifies the LORD
47 and my spirit rejoices in GOD my SAVIOUR,
48 for HE has been mindful
of the humble state of HIS servant.
From now on all generations will call me blessed,
49  for the MIGHTY ONE has done great things for me—
holy is HIS name.
50 HIS mercy extends to those who fear HIM,
from generation to generation.
51 HE has performed mighty deeds with HIS arm;
HE has scattered those who are proud in their inmost thoughts.
52 HE has brought down rulers from their thrones
but has lifted up the humble.
53 HE has filled the hungry with good things
but has sent the rich away empty.
54 HE has helped HIS servant Israel,
remembering to be merciful
55 to Abraham and his descendants forever,
just as he promised our ancestors.”
)

So imagine how stunned Joseph must have been when Mary returned from a long visit with her relative Elizabeth and told him that she was pregnant. Moreover, she was claiming no man had touched her.

Any way Joseph looked at the situation, it appeared grim. And yet Matthew 1: (20 But after he had considered this, an angel of the LORD appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the HOLY SPIRIT.)—in other words, he sought a wise, righteous response. GOD entered Joseph’s life in a dramatic way to confirm Mary’s story and put a stop to his “quiet annulment” plans.

The LORD turned Joseph’s mourning into joy. Mary had told the truth—strange and startling as it was. The couple would bear the intense public censure of an early pregnancy, but Joseph stopped thinking about what others would say. GOD had blessed work for him: to raise the Messiah alongside a faithful woman. 

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Followers of CHRIST should seek a godly response to disappointments we face. Since the LORD always has a plan (Jeremiah 29: 11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.), the wisest reaction is to anticipate the good HE can do and await HIS timing. GOD certainly blessed Joseph for his willingness to “seek first HIS kingdom” (Matt. 6: 33 But seek first HIS kingdom and HIS righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.).

“Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge HIM, and HE will make your paths straight.”Proverbs 3:5-6

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” John 14:27

GOD desires for our hearts to be committed to seeking HIM. But when you think about seeking the LORD, what kinds of things do you find yourself saying to HIM or asking of HIM? Often times, we may seek GOD for what HE can give us instead of simply seeking HIM for being GOD and what we can do for HIM! Now this doesn’t mean we can’t ask HIM for what we need. HE does want to provide for us and HE even longs to bless us abundantly, but HE wants us to have the right motives when we ask of HIM.

“I the LORD search the heart and examine the mind, to reward a man according to his conduct, according to what his deeds deserve.”–Jeremiah 17:10

In 2 Chronicles, we note how blessed Solomon was as a king. (I encourage you to read all of 2 Chronicles 1) He sought GOD with all of his heart, and when GOD told him to ask whatever he wished, Solomon’s heart was right towards GOD and he humbly asked for GOD’s wisdom, that he would lead the people in the ways of GOD as he reigned as king. Solomon didn’t ask for riches or for fame, but instead asked for the very heart of GOD. GOD honoured him and because of Solomon’s humility, he was not only given GOD’s wisdom, but was also given those things he did not ask for. When we come to GOD with a humble heart and desire the things HE desires, HIS blessings will naturally begin to flow into our lives without us even having to ask HIM!

“Give me wisdom and knowledge, that I may lead this people, for who is able to govern this great people of yours?”-2 Chronicles 1:10

“If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask GOD, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him.”–James 1:5

If you have trouble with desiring the things of GOD, the first step is to ask HIM to give you the desire to desire HIS heart. HIS will! Reading HIS WORD and spending time in HIS presence will help us to develop a heart after HIM and HIS desires instead of our own. We will begin to walk in the spirit, going after the things of GOD, and going less after worldly desires. We will no longer be satisfied by temporary things but will desire things that are eternal.

“So then, just as you received CHRIST JESUS as LORD, continues to live in HIM, rooted and built up in HIM, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.”–Colossians 2:6-7

“May the GOD of peace, who through the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our LORD JESUS, that great SHEPHERD of the sheep, equip you with everything good for doing HIS will, and may HE work in us what is pleasing to HIM, through JESUS CHRIST, to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.”–Hebrews 13:20-21

GOD cares deeply for us, and HE knows what we need, even if we may not know how HE will provide it. When we learn to ask GOD for the things on HIS heart, we will find ourselves more at peace than we ever were before. Our character will reflect GOD’s character and others will want to know what is different about us. As true Christians, we are carriers of GOD’s presence and we can help show others the joy, peace, and satisfaction there is in serving GOD and trusting HIM with our lives. HE is a good GOD! Seek HIM and you will lack no good thing!

To fear the LORD is to hate evil

Proverbs 8: 13 To fear the LORD is to hate evil; I hate pride and arrogance, evil behaviour and perverse speech.

The four examples of evil in Proverbs 8:13, which always end up doing harm, were manifested in Satan, and all of his children continue to exhibit them (see John 8:38 I am telling you what I have seen in the FATHER’s presence, and you are doing what you have heard from your (earthly) father.” 39 “Abraham is our father,” they answered. “If you were Abraham’s children,” said Jesus, “then you would do what Abraham did. 40 As it is, you are looking for a way to kill me, a man who has told you the truth that I heard from GOD. Abraham did not do such things. 41 You are doing the works of your own (earthly) father.” “We are not illegitimate children,” they protested. “The only FATHER we have is GOD himself.” 42 Jesus said to them, “If GOD were your FATHER, you would love ME, for I have come here from GOD. I have not come on my own; GOD sent me. 43 Why is my language not clear to you? Because you are unable to hear what I say. 44 You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s (Satan’s) desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he (Satan) lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies. 45 Yet because I tell the truth, you do not believe me! 46 Can any of you prove me guilty of sin? If I am telling the truth, why don’t you believe me? 47 Whoever belongs to GOD hears what GOD says. The reason you do not hear is that you do not belong to GOD.”). A progression is shown: Pride and arrogance are conditions of the heart, which is where it all starts. Where there is pride in the heart, it will come out in “the evil way,” that is in action.

Evil also emerges in words, though it may not always be obvious. JESUS cautions in Matthew 12:(34 You brood of vipers, how can you who are evil say anything good? For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.) , “Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.” When evil resides in the heart, it will be exposed in perverse speech, language contrary to the truth of God and to love. James 3:8 declares that “but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.” He also says, “If anyone does not stumble in word, he is a perfect man” (James 3:We all stumble in many ways. Anyone who is never at fault in what they say is perfect, able to keep their whole body in check.). We can only reach that perfection with God’s intervention and help, which, thankfully, we have.

The apostle Paul essentially says that the foundation of good works—particularly within the body of GOD—is humility or lowliness: (12 Therefore, as GOD’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. 13 Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the LORD forgave you.)

I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you to walk worthy of the calling with which you were called, with all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love, endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. (Ephesians 4:1As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received. Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.)

However, if works are done with pride or arrogance, or for the sake of appearance rather than truth and righteousness, they will cause harm. They may also produce some good, but the account of the Two Trees (Genesis 2:9 And out of the ground made the LORD GOD to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight, and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of knowledge of good and evil.2:16 And the LORD GOD commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat:2:17 But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.) in the Garden of Eden teaches that, in the context of eternity, a mixture of good and evil is really only evil.

Dealing with Disappointment and Calamity

Dealing with Disappointment and Calamity

Habakkuk 3:

17 Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls 18 yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will be joyful in GOD my SAVIOUR. 19 The SOVEREIGN LORD is my strength; HE makes my feet like the feet of a deer,HE enables me to tread on the heights.

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Countless people feel defeated and let down by disappointing situations. But our response can make all the difference. Frustrations, disappointment or calamity when happen to a true follower of CHRIST can be an opportunity for spiritual growth and a destructive blow to the superficial Christians and non-believers.

A right response to disappointment or calamity begins with resisting the natural tendency toward bitterness. If someone else was involved in the situation, don’t be quick to judge his or her conduct. We can’t fully understand what is going on in others’ lives or what motivates them to act as they do. Our second step should be to ask the LORD, “How am I to respond?” GOD can guide us to a wise and righteous reaction because HE has all the facts.

Third, follow HIS direction, even if it isn’t what you want to do. Oftentimes the LORD’s way contradicts our own desires and the advice of friends. However, HIS plan is the one that will bring about growth and result in our greatest good.

And finally, keep your focus on GOD and HIS higher purpose in your life. People are prone to dwell on their hurts and the harm that comes to them, which is what makes disappointment so destructive.

There is only one healthy method for dealing with let-down or disappointment —pursues the LORD’s way and HIS will. Though human plans can be derailed, nothing alters GOD’s purpose. No matter how deep your hurt goes, HE will shepherd you through setbacks and sorrows while growing your faith. Rom. 8:28 affirms that ‘28 And we know that in all things GOD works for the good of those who love HIM, who have been called according to HIS purpose.

GOD is so supremely in charge of the world that all the things that happen to true Christians who in faith are obedient to GOD, that everything ordered in such a way they serve our good. Tribulation and distress and persecution and famine and nakedness and peril and sword all work together for the good of those who love GOD.

So the rugged hope of the true believer is not that we will escape disappointment or distress or peril or hunger or slaughter, but that ALMIGHTY GOD will make every one of our agonies an instrument of HIS mercy to do us good. In Genesis – Joseph said to his brothers who had sold him into slavery, “You meant it for evil, but God meant it for good.” Genesis 50: 20 As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today. And so it is with every Disappointment or calamity of those who love and trust GOD and obey HIS WORD. GOD meant it for our good! 

Take Some New Ground

Take Some New Ground (leading more people to believe and trust GOD and love to obey HIS teachings).

“Again, truly I tell you that if two of you (true and faithful followers of JESUS) on earth agree about anything (base on the promises of our LORD) they ask for, it will be done for them by MY FATHER in heaven. (Matthew 18:19)

 

Dear Brothers and Sisters

As believers, you and I are part of a conquering army, constantly claiming new ground for the kingdom of God (leading more people to believe and trust GOD and love to obey HIS teachings). Right?

Well, yes, that’s the way it should be. But just about the time the army tops the hill and is ready to advance, it seems that Satan pulls out his big gun—DIVISION [DENOMINATIONALISM]–and scatters believers in every direction.

How can we strike back against the strategy of division? By using one of the most powerful resources our LORD JESUS had given us: the prayer of agreement (Matthew 18:19).

JESUS said that if any two of us (genuine followers) would agree aboutanything we ask for in HIS name, it shall be done! That statement is so powerful that people (even those who call themselves Christians) find it hard to believe. If they did, you’d find little groups of Christians huddled up in every corner agreeing together in prayers.

Find someone to agree with in prayer this week. Be sure to base what you pray on the WORD of GOD (the promises and teachings). You may have differing opinions about everything else, but you can be in agreement about the WORD.

Also, be sure your agreement is total–spirit, soul and body. Cast down arguments, theories and imaginations (traditions) that is contrary to the WORD. Take every thought captive to the obedience of CHRIST. Keep a watch over your thoughts and your words (tongues).

Then get your body in line by speaking the thing you’ve agreed on. Act like you’ve already received the answer. Don’t keep asking but thank GOD for it. Stay in agreement and take some new ground for the LORD!


Scripture Study: Acts 4:1-31

Peter and John Before the Sanhedrin

1 The priests and the captain of the temple guard and the Sadducees came up to Peter and John while they were speaking to the people. 2 They were greatly disturbed because the apostles were teaching the people, proclaiming in JESUS the resurrection of the dead. 3 They seized Peter and John and, because it was evening, they put them in jail until the next day. 4 But many who heard the message believed; so the number of men who believed grew to about five thousand.

5 The next day the rulers, the elders and the teachers of the law met in Jerusalem. 6 Annas the high priest was there, and so were Caiaphas, John, Alexander and others of the high priest’s family. 7 They had Peter and John brought before them and began to question them: “By what power or what name did you do this?”

8 Then Peter, filled with the HOLY SPIRIT, said to them: “Rulers and elders of the people! 9 If we are being called to account today for an act of kindness shown to a man who was lame and are being asked how he was healed, 10 then know this, you and all the people of Israel: It is by the name of JESUS CHRIST of Nazareth, whom you crucified but whom GOD raised from the dead, that this man stands before you healed. 11 JESUS is

“‘the stone you builders rejected,
which has become the cornerstone.’

12 Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved.”

13 When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realized that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with JESUS. 14 But since they could see the man who had been healed standing there with them, there was nothing they could say. 15 So they ordered them to withdraw from the Sanhedrin and then conferred together. 16 “What are we going to do with these men?” they asked. “Everyone living in Jerusalem knows they have performed a notable sign, and we cannot deny it. 17 But to stop this thing from spreading any further among the people, we must warn them to speak no longer to anyone in this name.”

18 Then they called them in again and commanded them not to speak or teach at all in the name of JESUS. 19 But Peter and John replied, “Which is right in GOD’s eyes: to listen to you, or to HIM? You be the judges! 20 As for us, we cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard.”

21 After further threats they let them go. They could not decide how to punish them, because all the people were praising GOD for what had happened. 22 For the man who was miraculously healed was over forty years old.

The Believers Pray

23 On their release, Peter and John went back to their own people and reported all that the chief priests and the elders had said to them. 24 When they heard this, they raised their voices together in prayer to GOD. “SOVEREIGN LORD,” they said, “YOU made the heavens and the earth and the sea, and everything in them. 25 YOU spoke by the HOLY SPIRIT through the mouth of your servant, our father David:

“‘Why do the nations rage
and the peoples plot in vain?
26 The kings of the earth rise up
and the rulers band together
against the LORD
and against HIS anointed one.

27 Indeed Herod and Pontius Pilate met together with the Gentiles and the people of Israel in this city to conspire against your holy servant JESUS, whom you anointed. 28 They did what your power and will had decided beforehand should happen. 29 Now, LORD, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak YOUR WORD with great boldness. 30 Stretch out YOUR hand to heal and perform signs and wonders through the name of your holy servant JESUS.”

31 After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the HOLY SPIRIT and spoke the WORD of GOD boldly.

GOD has given you the freedom to choose

The Right Road

“I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, which both thou and thy seed may live.”
(Deuteronomy 30:19)

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

“GOD is going to get you for that (for sinning against HIM)! People have said that kind of thing jokingly for years. They’ve somehow believed that GOD slaps us down with pain and punishment every time we sin. But that’s just not true. There are deadly wages for sin, but GOD is not the one who’s leading us into the deadly wages of sins.

You see, the Bible tells us there’s been a curse in effect for thousands of years. And the devil is the cause of it, not the LORD GOD. GOD gave warning of it in Deuteronomy 30:19. After describing in detail the blessings that fall upon those who followed GOD and the terrible suffering that would befall those who separated themselves from HIM, HE said, “I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live.”

Think of it this way.  The Curse for Sin is out there. God warned us about it and urged us not to travel the road that leads there. But HE has promised to give us freedom, and HE allows us to choose our own way. If we get on the road to Hell and don’t get off of it, we’re going to wind up there. Is that because GOD sent us there? No! HE urged us not to go.

The vital thing to realize is this: At any point of the journey whether you’re on the road to Hell or living right in the middle of sins – God will save you from it. HE will take you out of there and deliver you. HE will deliver you from the curse of sins – destructions, diseases, addictions, or anything else that’s been holding you captive.

Today if you find yourself on the wrong road and see destruction ahead, just repent and get on the right road by committing your way to JESUS and HE will deliver you from whatever may be holding you captive. You can begin by praying, “LORD JESUS, I’ve chosen the wrong road and right now I ask YOU to forgive me. Today I choose life by choosing YOUR way. Please deliver me from this bondage and fill me with YOUR HOLY SPIRIT. Thank You, LORD!”

Remember this: No matter what you’ve done, GOD doesn’t want to punish you for it, HE wants to forgive you of the sins you have committed. HE doesn’t want to slap you down, HE wants to save you and lift you up but you must repent of your sinful ways. Trust HIM and let HIM put you on the road of life today!

 

Scripture Study: Deuteronomy 30

Prosperity After Turning to the Lord

30: 1When all these blessings and curses I have set before you come on you and you take them to heart wherever the Lord your God disperses you among the nations, 2 and when you and your children return to the Lord your God and obey him with all your heart and with all your soul according to everything I command you today, 3 then the Lord your God will restore your fortunes and have compassion on you and gather you again from all the nations where he scattered you. 4 Even if you have been banished to the most distant land under the heavens, from there the Lord your God will gather you and bring you back. 5 He will bring you to the land that belonged to your ancestors, and you will take possession of it. He will make you more prosperous and numerous than your ancestors. 6 The Lord your God will circumcise your hearts and the hearts of your descendants, so that you may love him with all your heart and with all your soul, and live. 7 The Lord your God will put all these curses on your enemies who hate and persecute you. 8 You will again obey the Lord and follow all his commands I am giving you today. 9 Then the Lord your God will make you most prosperous in all the work of your hands and in the fruit of your womb, the young of your livestock and the crops of your land. The Lord will again delight in you and make you prosperous, just as he delighted in your ancestors, 10 if you obey the Lord your God and keep his commands and decrees that are written in this Book of the Law and turn to the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul.

The Offer of Life or Death

11 Now what I am commanding you today is not too difficult for you or beyond your reach. 12 It is not up in heaven, so that you have to ask, “Who will ascend into heaven to get it and proclaim it to us so we may obey it?” 13 Nor is it beyond the sea, so that you have to ask, “Who will cross the sea to get it and proclaim it to us so we may obey it?” 14 No, the word is very near you; it is in your mouth and in your heart so you may obey it.

15 See, I set before you today life and prosperity, death and destruction. 16 For I command you today to love the Lord your God, to walk in obedience to him, and to keep his commands, decrees and laws; then you will live and increase, and the Lord your God will bless you in the land you are entering to possess.

17 But if your heart turns away and you are not obedient, and if you are drawn away to bow down to other gods and worship them, 18 I declare to you this day that you will certainly be destroyed. You will not live long in the land you are crossing the Jordan to enter and possess.

19 This day I call the heavens and the earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live 20 and that you may love the Lord your God, listen to his voice, and hold fast to him. For the Lord is your life, and he will give you many years in the land he swore to give to your fathers, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.

Prosperities

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

The Bible is a book of GOD’s promises to the true followers of CHRIST and the Chinese new year will bring blessings to all Christians who love and obey GOD’s WORD:

心想事成 Ps 37:4 God will grant us the desires of our heart

万事如意 Rom 8:28 In all things God works together for the good of those who love Him

岁岁平安 Phil 4:7 The peace of God will guard our hearts and minds in Christ

事业有成 Jer. 29:11 God knows the plans for us to prosper us and give us a future and a hope

步步高升 Eph. 2:6 God has raised us up with Christ and seated us with Him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus

金玉满堂 Prov. 15:6 The house of the righteous is filled with treasure

红运当头 Deut. 28:13 God has made us the head and not the tail (as a result of Jesus’ shed blood)

笑口常开 Ps 105:43 God brings His people out with rejoicing, and His chosen ones with shouts of joy.

恭喜发财 Ps 65:11 You crown the year with a bountiful harvest; even the hard pathways overflow with abundance.

Warning to all those who call themselves Christian, “you can be assured you will have no part in GOD’s blessings if you are disobedience to GOD’s WORD and are still living by the flesh in an unrepentant state of life.” Please read Galatians 5: 19 Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are: adultery, sexual immorality, uncleanness, lack of restraint,20 Idolatry, sorcery, hatred, arguments, jealousies, rage, selfishness, divisiveness,21 Envies, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; which I tell you before, as I have also told you in times past, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God (have no part in GOD’s blessings).

But if you repent of your sins and obey all the teachings of our LORD, the WORD of GOD tell us:

1 Sam 2:30 . . . . . But now the LORD says: ‘Far be it from ME; for those who honour ME I will honour, and those who despise ME shall be lightly esteemed”.

Ps. 91: 14 “Because he loves ME,” says the LORD, “I will rescue him;
I will protect him, for he acknowledges MY name.
15 He will call on ME, and I will answer him;
I will be with him in trouble,
I will deliver him and honour him.
16 With long life I will satisfy him
and show him MY Salvation.”

Proverbs 5: 7 Now then, MY sons, listen to ME;
do not turn aside from what I say.
8
Keep to a path far from her,
do not go near the door of her house,
9
lest you lose your honour to others
and your dignity to one who is cruel,
10
lest strangers feast on your wealth
and your toil enrich the house of another.

John 12: 26 Whoever serves ME must follow ME; and where I am, MY servant also will be. MY FATHER will honour the one who serves ME. (JESUS is saying to those [who call themselves Christians] who function as HIS servants-serving the world in HIS name-will be honoured by the heavenly FATHER. Every true servant will ultimately be honoured by the LORD whom they serve and WHO has promised them honour for that service! If we follow and serve our KING, in that act of service we are elevated to a place of honour!)

Proverbs 3: 9 Honour the Lord with your wealth,
with the first-fruits of all your crops
; (Honour the Lord with thy substance – The or gratitude-offering to GOD, commanded under the law, is of endless obligation. It would be well to give a portion of the produce of every article by which we get our support to God, or to the poor, the representatives of CHRIST. This might be done either in kind, or by the worth in money. Whatever GOD sends us in the way of secular prosperity, there is a portion of it always for the poor, and for GOD’s cause. When that portion is thus disposed of, the rest is sanctified; when it is withheld, GOD’s curse is upon the whole. Give to the poor, and GOD will give to thee.)

Inside Out

Inside Out

And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the LORD’s glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the LORD, who is the SPIRIT.
(2 Corinthians 3:18)

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Have you ever thought about the fact that man is the only creature GOD created who has to wear clothing to cover himself? All the other creatures grow their own coverings. Some grow fur, some feathers, others scales, or leathery hide. But all are clothed from the inside out!

Most people don’t realize it, but in the beginning, man was clothed that way too. He was made in the image of GOD. And, if you’ll look in Ezekiel 8: (I looked, and I saw a figure like that of a man. From what appeared to be HIS waist down HE was like fire, and from there up HIS appearance was as bright as glowing metal.), you’ll find that GOD is clothed in fire from the loins up and from the loins down. That fire is HIS glory emanating outward from HIS inner-most being.

When man was first created, he was like that too. He was covered with the very glory of GOD. It radiated from his inner being outward. That’s why he had no sense of nakedness (Gen. 2: 25 Adam and his wife were both naked, and they felt no shame.) until after he sinned (Gen. 3: 11 And GOD said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?”) and the glory departed from him (Gen. 3: 7 Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized they were naked).

It was a tragic day when man lost that glorious covering. But I want you to know something today. It’s not lost forever. The WORD of GOD says we can gain it back (1 Jn. 3: 2 Dear friends, now we are children of GOD, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when CHRIST appears, we shall be like HIM, for we shall see HIM as HE is.).

You see, when you put your faith in the blood of JESUS and were born again, the glory of GOD once again took up residence in you (John 14:23 JESUS replied, “Anyone who loves ME will obey MY teaching. MY FATHER will love them, and WE will come to them and make OUR home with them). It may be well hidden right now, but believe me, it’s there in you when you love and obey JESUS. GOD will never lie!

And the Bible says that as you gaze into the LORD’s face by studying the WORD and fellowship with HIM, as you renew your mind to understand who you are in CHRIST, you’ll be changed into HIS image on the outside as well. As you learn to hear HIS voice and obey it, you’ll start giving outward expression of the glory within you. Little by little, you’ll be turned inside out!

My dear Brothers and Sisters in CHRIST, instead of simply staring into your closet every morning, spend some time gazing at JESUS and beholding HIS WORD. Let HIM clothe you in HIS radiant presence. Once HIS glory starts shining through, anything you wear will look beautiful on you. Praise GOD, Amen!


Scripture Study: http://www.fairviewpresbyterian.com/modules/wfchannel/index.php?pagenum=4_PHPSESSID=9e6bd6e54ba649f3f844875cd2521101
Psalm 8

A psalm of David.

1 Lord, our Lord,
how majestic is your name in all the earth!

You have set your glory
in the heavens.
2 Through the praise of children and infants
you have established a stronghold against your enemies,
to silence the foe and the avenger.
3 When I consider your heavens,
the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars,
which you have set in place,
4 what is mankind that you are mindful of them,
human beings that you care for them?

5 You have made them a little lower than the angels
and crowned them with glory and honour.
6 You made them rulers over the works of your hands;
you put everything under their feet:
7 all flocks and herds,
and the animals of the wild,
8 the birds in the sky,
and the fish in the sea,
all that swim the paths of the seas.

9 Lord, our Lord,
how majestic is your name in all the earth!

Our daily walk with JESUS CHRIST