“The promises of God grow and flourish best in a humble, loving, and obedient heart.”
Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – December 4, 2023
Now the serpent was more cunning than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said to the woman, “Has God indeed said, ‘You shall not eat of every tree of the garden’?” Genesis 3:1
Do what the Lord is telling you to do. But you may say, “I know what God has told me, but others are asking me hard questions that are causing me to doubt what I should do.” I get it. When I read a promise of God in His sacred Word, I get excited and grab hold of His truth like a winning lottery ticket. Then I share my excitement with another, who reminds me of why it may not be true. Fear and doubt are cousins who can talk me out of what I know to be true. I see this played out in watching our grandchildren with their swim instructor. Standing ten feet away from the pool wall, he promises to be there for the flailing new swimmer to grab hold of after a ten-foot swim of faith. With growing confidence, our grandchild grows comfortable, trusts her swimming instructor, and is able to swim further, eventually covering the length of the pool. Yet, fear and doubt persist. They must submit to trust in what God says is true to truly live by faith.
Eve encounters her first test of faith in what God has said when the cunning serpent, Satan, questions her, “Has God indeed said?” Eve had the benefit of hearing very clearly and directly from God to enjoy His fruitful creation but to avoid what would not be good for her, which was seeking to have all knowledge and thus be like God. Fulfilling unhealthy desires and pride were Eve’s downfall. This temptation and warning still persists today as the Bible reminds us to avoid the wily seductions from the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life (1 John 2:16). The promises of God grow and flourish best in a humble, loving and obedient heart.
Not only can we grasp tightly and hold on to the promises of God in Scripture, but we can also rest in and trust the Incarnate Word…Jesus Christ. Sheep feel most secure and at peace when closest to the Shepherd. So, draw near to God, and His Spirit will whisper sweet reassurances: “You are mine, I love you, I’ve got you, move forward by faith in Me, as I am with you and will never leave you.” Close proximity to the Promise Keeper brightens His promises that expose lies.
And be ever vigilant to answer correctly reoccurring questions that seek to derail you from trust:
Did God really say my relationship with Him is based on my belief in Jesus Christ as His son and the only way to heaven (John 14:6)? Did God really say that those who believe in Jesus go to heaven, and those who reject him are separated from God eternally in hell (Revelation 20:15)? Did God really say that I am to pay my taxes that are due the government as an example of good citizenship (Mark 12:17)? Did God really say I am to honor my parents, even if they are undeserving of honor (Ephesians 6:1-3)? Satan may be seducing you with these subtle messages of doubt. Did God really say to volunteer in the church, start tithing, stay in this marriage, forgive my friend, invest in my family, and help my neighbor? Did He really say to trust Him, even when I don’t feel Him? Am I to obey Him when I don’t understand why or how? The answer to all is Yes, God said!
“Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand” (Isaiah 41:10, NKJV).
Heavenly Father, give me the courage to do what you say with a joyful, obedient heart through Christ’s love and in Jesus’ name. Amen.
What has God told you to do that you need to begin by taking the first step today?
Maverick City: Promises
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