September 25, 2016

  • Solace (Dictionary): Someone or something that gives a feeling of comfort to a person who is sad or depressed; a source of comfort; comfort in grief; alleviation of grief or anxiety.
  • Solace (Bible): A calling for, summons; exhortation, entreaty; encouragement; joy; gladness; consolation; comfort.

Solace is a word we rarely use. But, it could be viewed as a foundational word to the Christian. It was intended to call us to prayer. Solace appears in verse 3 of that wonderful Hymn: “What a Friend We Have in Jesus:”

What a friend We Have in Jesus (Charles Converse)

  1. What a friend we have in Jesus,
    All our sins and griefs to bear!
    What a privilege to carry
    Everything to God in prayer!
    Oh, what peace we often forfeit,
    Oh, what needless pain we bear,
    All because we do not carry
    Everything to God in prayer!
  2. Have we trials and temptations?
    Is there trouble anywhere?
    We should never be discouraged—
    Take it to the Lord in prayer.
    Can we find a friend so faithful,
    Who will all our sorrows share?
    Jesus knows our every weakness;
    Take it to the Lord in prayer.
  3. Are we weak and heavy-laden,
    Cumbered with a load of care?
    Precious Savior, still our refuge—
    Take it to the Lord in prayer.
    Do thy friends despise, forsake thee?
    Take it to the Lord in prayer!
    In His arms He’ll take and shield thee,
    Thou wilt find a solace there.

Verse 1 brings a wonderful word! The Hymn writer knew that we will have difficult moments. He exhorts us to pray and seek God for help! Why would we not? Jesus is always our example on prayer:

Matthew 7:7:  “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.”(NASB) 

Verse 2 carries over from verse 1 and tells us to be encouraged in the midst of trials and temptations. He again focuses on the incredible friendship we have in Jesus. Jesus hears our most desperate cries. It is so comforting to know the very Creator of the universe is always, always available and hears us!

Philippians 4:4-7: 4Always be full of joy in the Lord; I say it again, rejoice! Let everyone see that you are unselfish and considerate in all you do. Remember that the Lord is coming soon. Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything; tell God your needs, and don’t forget to thank him for his answers.If you do this, you will experience God’s peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will keep your thoughts and your hearts quiet and at rest as you trust in Christ Jesus.” (TLB) 

Verse 3 speaks to those who have few close friends and whose heart is heavy and sad. Once again the Hymn writer reminds us that Jesus is our refuge-no matter what!

Psalm 17:7: Wondrously show Your loving kindness, O Savior of those who take refuge at Your right hand From those who rise up against them.” (NASB)

Psalm 18:2: The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, My God, my rock, in whom I take refuge; My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.” (NASB)

Hebrews 6:16-18:  16 Now when people take an oath, they call on someone greater than themselves to hold them to it. And without any question that oath is binding. 17 God also bound himself with an oath, so that those who received the promise could be perfectly sure that he would never change his mind. 18 So God has given both his promise and his oath. These two things are unchangeable because it is impossible for God to lie. Therefore, we who have fled to him for refuge can have great confidence as we hold to the hope that lies before us. 19 This hope is a strong and trustworthy anchor for our souls.” (NLT)

He knows that at times we can be fragile like an orchid. But He also sees the hidden beauty and kindness in us! If we are struggling, let us go and find our solace in Him!



September 18, 2016

  • Prune (Dictionary): To cut off some of the branches of (a tree or bush) so that it will grow better or look better to reduce (something) by removing parts that are not necessary or wanted.
  • Prune (Bible): Purify, prune; chastise, curtail, punish; cause to be punished; to gather; remove.

Branches are amazing! Branches must carry heavy loads such as snow and fruit and withstand high winds

John 15:1-3:  15 “I am the true vine, and My Father is the vineyard keeper. Every branch in Me that does not produce fruit He removes, and He prunes every branch that produces fruit so that it will produce more fruit.You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you.” (HCSB)

The Living Bible has interesting wording for this Scripture:

John 15:1-3:  15 “I am the true Vine, and my Father is the Gardener. He lops off every branch that doesn’t produce. And he prunes those branches that bear fruit for even larger crops.He has already tended you by pruning you back for greater strength and usefulness by means of the commands I gave you.” (TLB) 

Our heavenly Father takes delight in pruning us. For some, this pruning can be difficult. But the really great thing is His pruning is done for our best and produces fruit to His glory.

There is an interesting facet of pruning related to fruit trees that has application here. Fruit bearing trees can be trained to produce more fruit using weights attached to their branches. The weights eventually are removed and the branches remain in their new position. The farmer then prunes the branches. This allows access to more sunlight, more pruning, and better access for gathering the fruit. The end result is a stronger tree or vine and more fruit! There is a metaphor in this picture. When our faith is tested by situations in life, it may seem like we are weighted down by that situation. Yet God is allowing us to be tested so our branch can bear more fruit and be open to needed pruning! We can see how very important it is that we apply what Jesus was teaching about fruit and branches.

John 15:4-5:  4Remain in Me, and I in you. Just as a branch is unable to produce fruit by itself unless it remains on the vine, so neither can you unless you remain in Me.“I am the vine; you are the branches. The one who remains in Me and I in him produces much fruit, because you can do nothing without Me.” (HCSB) 

Our abiding and seeking produces fruit that has eternal value and fills us with joy! God desires to see fruit in our lives and has a warning for those who reject His Son: 

John 15:6-8:  6”Anyone who does not remain in me is thrown away like a useless branch and withers. Such branches are gathered into a pile to be burned.But if you remain in me and my words remain in you, you may ask for anything you want, and it will be granted! When you produce much fruit, you are my true disciples. This brings great glory to my Father.” (NLT)

Our walk or life here on earth will impact eternity and determine where we will spend eternity! Jesus talks about dead or withered branches which are destined for fire.  Each person must make a decision to abide in Jesus and His love or reject Jesus. If we continue to “ask, seek and knock” and serve as one of His disciples, we will see fruit. Producing fruit may be different for each of us, so we need to seek out what the Lord would have us do. But placing Him first in our life will maintain our abiding and we will see fruit. Jesus reiterates this later in John, chapter 15:

John 15: 15-16: 15 No longer do I call you slaves, for the slave does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I have heard from My Father I have made known to you. 16 You did not choose Me but I chose you, and appointed you that you would go and bear fruit, and that your fruit would remain, so that whatever you ask of the Father in My name He may give to you.” (NASB) 

What a wonderful promise!  To know we have chosen by the Lord as His friend should be a treasured part of our daily walk. Within our fellowship with Jesus we will find our abiding. Hebrews sums up some of which Jesus had taught:

Hebrews 12:25-29: 28 Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us hold on to grace. By it, we may serve God acceptably, with reverence and awe, 29 for our God is a consuming fire.” (HCSB) 

The abiding and the fruit are by grace! We can only produce fruit to God’s glory through Jesus and the empowerment of the Holy Spirit! Without His strength and power we are helpless to produce godly fruit.

Heavenly Father,

 Please guide my way.

Each and every gifted day,

Teaching me what to say.

Asking what You would have me do,

To bear much fruit worthy of You.

And may the lives I touch each day,

Find the one and only way.






Prune (Dictionary): To cut off some of the branches of (a tree or bush) so that it will grow better or look better to reduce (something) by removing parts that are not necessary or wanted.Prune (Bible): Purify, prune; chastise, curtail, punish; cause to be punished; to gather; remove.

Accept or Reject

Accept or Reject

September 11, 2016

  • Reject (Dictionary): To refuse to believe, accept, or consider (something); to decide not to publish (something) or make (something) available to the public because it is not good enough;to refuse to allow (someone) to join a club, to attend a school, etc.
  • Reject (Bible): Reject after testing, disqualify; annul, make of no effect, set aside, ignore, slight; break faith with; loath; refuse; deny (a statement); repudiate (a person, or belief).

John 16:33:  33These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world. 

John 16:33: 33 These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world. 

It seemed good to repeat this Scripture!  It’s also good to remember we are not exempt from challenges to our faith. Jesus said to expect it!. Rejection can come at us via words, looks and through anger. But we have Jesus promised peace!

It is human nature to want people to like us and accept us for who we are. When we choose to walk with Jesus and take a stand for the Gospel, we can expect people will reject and even persecute us. Jesus and John the Baptist knew all about being rejected. We can learn much about how they responded to their times of rejection.

Mark 10:17-23:  17 As He was setting out on a journey, a man ran up to Him and knelt before Him, and asked Him, “Good Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” 18 And Jesus said to him, “Why do you call Me good? No one is good except God alone. 19 You know the commandments, ‘Do not murder, Do not commit adultery, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Do not defraud, Honor your father and mother.’”  20 And he said to Him, “Teacher, I have kept all these things from my youth up.” 21 Looking at him, Jesus felt a love for him and said to him, One thing you lack: go and sell all you possess and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.” 22 But at these words he was saddened, and he went away grieving, for he was one who owned much property.23 And Jesus, looking around, *said to His disciples, “How hard it will be for those who are wealthy to enter the kingdom of God!”(NASB)

Jesus takes time to meet with a rich man. The man asks a question about eternal life and Jesus provides the answer. But in the end, the rich man simply rejects what has been spoken to him by the Lord and walks away. He rejects Jesus words of truth. In the end the man simply walks away from Jesus. We would hope that the rich man would have a change of heart because of the words Jesus spoke and the seeds He planted. Jesus spoke the truth and that is what we must do. If someone rejects our testimony, we should pray for them that God will bring them into His marvelous light!

Another incident was the thief’s rejection of Jesus at the cross: 

Luke 23:39-43: 29 Look, the days are coming when they will say, ‘The women without children, the wombs that never bore and the breasts that never nursed, are fortunate!’ 30 Then they will begin to say to the mountains, ‘Fall on us!’ and to the hills, ‘Cover us!’ 31 For if they do these things when the wood is green, what will happen when it is dry?”32 Two others—criminals—were also led away to be executed with Him.33 When they arrived at the place called The Skull, they crucified Him there, along with the criminals, one on the right and one on the left. [34 Then Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, because they do not know what they are doing.”]  And they divided His clothes and cast lots. 35 The people stood watching, and even the leaders kept scoffing: “He saved others; let Him save Himself if this is God’s Messiah, the Chosen One!” 36 The soldiers also mocked Him. They came offering Him sour wine 37 and said, “If You are the King of the Jews, save Yourself!” 38 An inscription was above Him: THIS IS THE KING OF THE JEWS. 

39 Then one of the criminals hanging there began to yell insults at Him: “Aren’t You the Messiah? Save Yourself and us!” 40 But the other answered, rebuking him: “Don’t you even fear God, since you are undergoing the same punishment? 41 We are punished justly, because we’re getting back what we deserve for the things we did, but this man has done nothing wrong.”42 Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when You come into Your kingdom!” 43 And He said to him, “I assure you: Today you will be with Me in paradise.” (HCSB)

The thieves knew death was near and this would be their last moments on earth. The thieves were only a few feet from Jesus and could see and hear everything, – yet one chose to reject. Jesus, his only hope. We see rejection of the gospel all around us. How sad!

Luke 7:28-30: ”28 I tell you, of all who have ever lived, none is greater than John. Yet even the least person in the Kingdom of God is greater than he is!”29 When they heard this, all the people—even the tax collectors—agreed that God’s way was right, for they had been baptized by John. 30 But the Pharisees and experts in religious law rejected God’s plan for them, for they had refused John’s baptism.” (NASB)

So we see that there is always a choice to be made. Like the Pharisees and lawyers in Jesus time, many will let their intellect get in the way. John was a powerful witness to all around him. His actions provided a clear testimony. The BIG question is:”Will people accept Jesus and His word or will they choose to reject Him”? Our time here is short so let us renew our “reaching out“ to the lost! Eternity is in the balance and Heaven and Hell are very real!

Father God, we are so grateful You have called us into Your marvelous light. Help us to renew our prayers for those we know are lost and in darkness. Whatever situation we are in, help us to pray before we speak. Please use us to sow seeds and be a living testimony of our Lord Jesus Christ!

A Drop in the Bucket

A Drop in the Bucket

September 4, 2016

  • Drop (Dictionary): The quantity of fluid that falls in one spherical mass  a dose of medicine measured by drops (i.e. eye drops for dilating the pupil of the eye),minute quantity or degree of something non material or intangible; a small quantity of drink; the smallest practical unit of liquid measure.
  • Drop (Bible): To drip, drop; rain; droplets; nod in sleep, drowsy, slumber.

Isaiah 40:12-15:12 Who has measured the waters in the hollow of his hand or marked off the heavens with the span of his hand? Who has gathered the dust of the earth in a measure or weighed the mountains in a balance and the hills in the scales? 13 Who has directed the Spirit of the Lord, or who gave Him His counsel 14 Who did He consult with? Who gave Him understanding and taught Him the paths of justice? Who taught Him knowledge and showed Him the way of understanding? 15 Look, the nations are like a drop in a bucket; they are considered as a speck of dust in the scales; He lifts up the islands like fine dust.” (HCSB)

Isaiah is told to call out the greatness of God to encourage God’s people. In the midst of Isaiah’s exhortation, we learn that the nations of the earth are as a “drop in the bucket” and seen as a “speck of dust” compared to God’s greatness!

We have all heard the “bucket” expression and at times heard it as a “drop in the ocean.” It is an old phrase. We could take a minute to examine this picture of Isaiah’s bucket or pail and see its use in another metaphor.

If we took a 5-gallon pail where we can use an eye dropper to introduce water one drop at a time we could count the drops. What we would find is the total number of drops would be 90,840 drops- or thereabouts.  I wonder what would it take to fill all the oceans in the world with an eye dropper? One scientist has estimated the total volume of all earth’s oceans at 1400 million cubic kilometers! You do the math-my slide rule doesn’t go that high!

But one thing we learn quickly is that God cannot be described or reduced to some number or to some finite thought! God is incomparable and it is absurd to try and reduce the imagination of God to our vastly limited dimensions and minds! (n.b.Just as a side note, our scientist people estimate that the total number of stars is 300 sextillion stars or 100 billion times 3 trillion. That is the number 3 followed by 23 zeros!) Wow! Once again the numbers are impressive, but cannot begin to describe God’s greatness!

When we ponder the use of a bucket, the volume of the oceans and the vastness of outer space, we find our God has everything under control. He is intimately involved with all parts of His creation- even down to individual atoms and molecules! Numbers are interesting but our attempts to describe our God are in reality the finite trying to describe the infinite! We find if we want to truly experience God, we must learn from His Son Jesus and the things said and done by Him.

Luke 21:1-4:  21 While Jesus was in the Temple, he watched the rich people dropping their gifts in the collection box.Then a poor widow came by and dropped in two small coins.“I tell you the truth, “Jesus said, “this poor widow has given more than all the rest of them.For they have given a tiny part of their surplus, but she, poor as she is, has given everything she has.” (NLT) 

Jesus could have told them how much was placed in the treasury but instead focused on two small coins. So we see it is not so much about large numbers as it is about large hearts!

Jesus also brought forth a new parable which dealt with the heart and how God expects us to respond to people’s needs and hurts:

Luke 10:30-37:  30 Jesus replied with a story: “A Jewish man was traveling from Jerusalem down to Jericho, and he was attacked by bandits. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him up, and left him half dead beside the road 31 “By chance a priest came along. But when he saw the man lying there, he crossed to the other side of the road and passed him by. 32 A Temple assistant walked over and looked at him lying there, but he also passed by on the other side.33 Then a despised Samaritan came along, and when he saw the man, he felt compassion for him. 34 Going over to him, the Samaritan soothed his wounds with olive oil and wine and bandaged them. Then he put the man on his own donkey and took him to an inn, where he took care of him. 35 The next day he handed the innkeeper two silver coins, telling him, ‘Take care of this man. If his bill runs higher than this, I’ll pay you the next time I’m here.’ 36 “Now which of these three would you say was a neighbor to the man who was attacked by bandits?” Jesus asked. 37 The man replied, “The one who showed him mercy.” Then Jesus said, “Yes, now go and do the same.” (NLT)

It is interesting that the woman gave two small copper coins and the Good Samaritan required two silver coins. Both were adequate and available to be used. If we consider God’s kingdom as a metaphor of a bucket or ocean, then the very actions of grace by the woman and the Samaritan could be seen as bringing praise and glory into Gods kingdom.

Jesus has given us forgiveness and brought us into a place of grace. We now can live a life of actions that bring praise to God and be part of-metaphorically speaking- a drop in God’s bucket! Every drop of mercy and kindness dropped into His kingdom is important to the Lord and will be counted!

Romans 5:1-2: 5Therefore, since we have been made right in God’s sight by faith, we have peace with God because of what Jesus Christ our Lord has done for us.Because of our faith, Christ has brought us into this place of undeserved privilege where we now stand, and we confidently and joyfully look forward to sharing God’s glory.” (NLT)

Our Hearing Aid and the Need Thereof

Our Hearing Aid and the Need Thereof

August 21, 2016

  • Hear (Dictionary): To perceive or apprehend by the ear; to gain knowledge of by hearing; to listen to with attention; heed; to give a legal hearing to; take testimony from (i.e. hear witnesses).
  • Hear (Bible): Hear beforehand; hear throughout of a judicial hearing; a report; hearken to; obey; and answer.

Luke 9:30-31, 34-35:  30 And behold, two men were talking with Him; and they were Moses and Elijah, 31 who, appearing in glory, were speaking of His departure which He was about to accomplish at Jerusalem. 33 And as these were leaving Him, Peter said to Jesus, “Master, it is good for us to be here; let us make three tabernacles: one for You, and one for Moses, and one for Elijah”—not realizing what he was saying.  34 While he was saying this, a cloud formed and began to overshadow them; and they were afraid as they entered the cloud. 35 Then a voice came out of the cloud, saying, “This is My Son, My Chosen One; listen to Him!” (NASB)

Peter got all caught up in the moment and who wouldn’t be! He became focused on making shelters for the three men. But God the Father explained that listening to Jesus should be the primary goal! Seeking Jesus words should be a primary focus for us as well.

One serious problem we have today is the fact that people seem to be hard of hearing- that is Spiritual hearing… Some just do not want to hear what the Lord is saying and others want to but the effort is not there. Our lifestyle is so hectic and we are often so tired, we are just not able to slow down enough to hear what the heart of the Father is saying through His Son!

Luke 10:38-42: 38 As Jesus and the disciples continued on their way to Jerusalem, they came to a certain village where a woman named Martha welcomed him into her home. 39 Her sister, Mary, sat at the Lord’s feet, listening to what he taught. 40 But Martha was distracted by the big dinner she was preparing. She came to Jesus and said, “Lord, doesn’t it seem unfair to you that my sister just sits here while I do all the work? Tell her to come and help me.” 41 But the Lord said to her, “My dear Martha, you are worried and upset over all these details! 42 There is only one thing worth being concerned about. Mary has discovered it, and it will not be taken away from her.” (NLT) 

Jesus loved both women and was glad to sit and teach and beside this, was most likely grateful for a quiet moment. Whenever an opportunity presented itself, Jesus taught about the kingdom and the gospel –even when hungry and thirsty. Mary had chosen to listen to Jesus and was not distracted!

John 4:13-15:  13 Jesus replied that people soon became thirsty again after drinking this water. 14 “But the water I give them,” he said, “becomes a perpetual spring within them, watering them forever with eternal life.15 “Please, sir,” the woman said, “give me some of that water! Then I’ll never be thirsty again and won’t have to make this long trip out here every day.” (TLB)

At this encounter, the woman at the well was listening carefully and Jesus was right there and willing to teach.  The end result was a remarkable testimony by the woman and an excellent example for the Disciples!

These days many people wear hearing aids. It is even hard to tell they are wearing one.  I have had my hearing tested and have lost some ability to hear- especially in a crowd. On top of that, I have found most hearing aids to be expensive and can run into the thousands of dollars. The truth is we all need a hearing aid! Something that allows us to hear what is happening in our part of the world and elsewhere. Something that cuts out the static and background noise. But how can many people afford such a gadget.?  As it turns out we all have a perfect hearing aid and it is free!. It is called the Bible!

When we go back to the Mount of Transfiguration, we once again hear our Father saying:

“This is My Son, My Chosen One; listen to Him!” 

We must take serious heed to do what Our Father is saying. We need to sit again at the feet of Jesus the great Teacher and guardian of our soul. We need to become Mary’s with a built  in discipline of listening. Maybe we haven’t read the Gospels lately. If so, let us renew our  spirit through the study of these wonderful Books of the Bible.

The Hearing Aid of Scripture is there and it is free. It has the ability to release us from the heaviness of life and to hear Gods heart. How can we not read the Gospels?  Be encouraged this day to dive into John or any of the Gospels. They are  carefully placed there to teach us and help us to hear!

It has been awhile,

Since I sat at Jesus feet.

To hear Him teach,

And to have a time to meet.

My old friends,

Matthew, Mark, Luke and John

Filled with words so sweet,

It’s time for me to sit once more at Jesus feet.

Time for a Walk?

Time for a Walk?

August 21, 2016

  • Harmony (Dictionary): The combination of different musical notes played or sung at the same time to produce a pleasing sound; pleasing or congruent arrangement of parts (a painting exhibiting harmony of color and line); a pleasing combination or arrangement of different things a systematic arrangement of parallel literary passages (as of the Gospels) for the purpose of showing agreement or harmony.
  • Harmony (Bible): Peace, peace of mind; symphony, i.e. music; of one mind (intent, purpose), like-minded; form, shape, outward appearance; oneness, unity, unanimity.

When the Lord created our universe, there was a wonderful plan set into place. The plan had a focus on harmony and love beyond description and beyond understanding! But mankind lost sight of the true God and His intended harmony:

Romans 1:18-22:  18 But God shows his anger from heaven against all sinful, evil men who push away the truth from them. 19 For the truth about God is known to them instinctively;  God has put this knowledge in their hearts. 20 Since earliest times men have seen the earth and sky and all God made, and have known of his existence and great eternal power. So they will have no excuse when they stand before God at Judgment Day. 21 Yes, they knew about him all right, but they wouldn’t admit it or worship him or even thank him for all his daily care. And after a while they began to think up silly ideas of what God was like and what he wanted them to do. The result was that their foolish minds became dark and confused. 22 Claiming themselves to be wise without God, they became utter fools instead. 23 And then, instead of worshiping the glorious, ever-living God, they took wood and stone and made idols for themselves, carving them to look like mere birds and animals and snakes and puny men. (TLB)

Many of us have read the above Scripture and been touched by its stark truth. The other day I took a walk by the creek. It was meant to be a quiet time of self inspection. But as I walked, I heard and witnessed God at work in His creation. There were the ever present Blue Jays, the relaxing sound of the nearby waterfall, the crows, the nearby clucking of a wild turkey, and the welcoming sounds of song birds. I also saw that some trees had begun to drop their leaves while others had their leaves changing color. It was so peaceful. It was being with God and His created harmony!  When our dear Lord returns, He will restore and establish His harmony again. But in the meantime, all creation struggles awaiting His return:

Romans 8:18-23: 18 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us. 19 For the anxious longing of the creation waits eagerly for the revealing of the sons of God. 20 For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it, in hope 21 that the creation itself also will be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God. 22 For we know that the whole creation groans and suffers the pains of childbirth together until now. 23 And not only this, but also we ourselves, having the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our body.” (NASB)

As I walked, I realized that change was there as a new fall season was about to start, and in fact was well on its way. Returning to my car and then onto the road I reflected on the differences between my creek path and the highway path. Perhaps change is happening in someone’s life and they are struggling right now. God extends His open arms to you! Seek and ask. It may be time for a walk! What do you think? 

Isaiah 55:8-12:  “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways,” declares the Lord. “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways And My thoughts than your thoughts. 10 “For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven, And do not return there without watering the earth And making it bear and sprout, And furnishing seed to the sower and bread to the eater; 11 So will My word be which goes forth from My mouth; It will not return to Me empty, Without accomplishing what I desire, And without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it.12 “For you will go out with joy And be led forth with peace; The mountains and the hills will break forth into shouts of joy before you, And all the trees of the field will clap their hands.” (NASB) 

This has always been a favorite Scripture. It calls to me and reveals my need to slow down and truly see God’s creation through the eyes of the Holy Spirit.


 I come to the garden alone

While the dew is still on the roses

And the voice I hear falling on my ear

The Son of God discloses.

 And He walks with me and He talks with me,

And He tells me I am His own;

And the joy we share as we tarry there,

None other has ever known.

 He speaks and the sound of His voice,

Is so sweet the birds hush their singing,

And the melody that He gave to me

Within my heart is ringing

 I’d stay in the garden with Him

Though the night around me be falling,

But He bids me go; through the voice of woe

His voice to me is calling…

The Trapper

The Trapper

August 14, 2016

  • Trap (Dictionary): Something who catches or takes in or as if in a trap; to place in a restricted position;  to engage in trapping animals; something by which someone is caught or stopped by surprise.
  • Trap (Bible): Snare; calamities; craving; deadly; desire; destruction; or greed.

Psalm 124: Had it not been the Lord who was on our side, “Let Israel now say,
“Had it not been the Lord who was on our side When men rose up against us,
Then they would have swallowed us alive, When their anger was kindled against us;Then the waters would have engulfed us, The stream would have swept over our soul;Then the raging waters would have swept over our soul.”Blessed be the Lord, Who has not given us to be torn by their teeth.7 Our soul has escaped as a bird out of the snare of the trapper; The snare is broken and we have escaped.Our help is in the name of the Lord, Who made heaven and earth. (NASB) 

We can learn a lot from David in Psalm 124. He recounts Gods’ protection and remembers to offer praise to the Lord for His wonderful grace. This should be our attitude as well!

As we study Psalm 124 we see David recalling events of God’s sovereign will which saved His people. The importance of these unnamed events are captured in the phrase:“Had it not been the Lord who was on our side, “Let Israel now say, “Had it not been the Lord who was on our side.” He wanted his nation to remember what God had done and how He had delivered Israel. As born again believers we know without God’s mercy and grace and salvation- through Jesus- we would have been spiritually blind and entered into a Christ less eternity! Let us have a constant attitude of thankfulness as we remember God’s salvation, deliverances and protection in our life!

There are times when we may feel overwhelmed by people or things in our life. Things that are stressful, hurtful, unexpected and in many cases have a presumptuous authority about them. We have certainly seen the Trapper-the devil- come against us and others. He is the one who sets snares for Gods people so they might be destroyed or removed from fellowship!  One of the Trappers most successful snares is that of creating an offense within the church that leads to strife. Peter warns us about the Trapper and to be on the alert:

1 Peter 5:8: Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.” (NASB)

David talks about a great overwhelming stream of raging water in Psalm 124, verses 2-5:

When their anger was kindled against us; 4Then the waters would have engulfed us, The stream would have swept over our soul;5 Then the raging waters would have swept over our soul.” 

This is a good picture of a Tsunami. We need to remember that the Tsunami results from a deep, hidden place underwater and is initiated by an earthquake. It is a picture of the Trapper’s attempt to snare or trap us! Those “raging waters” come from darkness . It can even be like a flood of words that can kill or drown our soul!

David also talks about the attack by “teeth that tear” in verse 6:

6Blessed be the Lord, Who has not given us to be torn by their teeth. 

When I read this short passage it reminds me of the world’s blatant assault on the Book of Genesis through the lie of evolution. It is as if their words and actions are trying to shred God’s truth! We need to be fixed in the truth given us by God!

God’s word is always there to provide wisdom and strength. Paul and David also remind us, from the word, of our great deliverance of God:

Ephesians 2:1-2: 1And you were dead in your trespasses and sins, in which you formerly walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience.” (NASB) 

Psalm 124:7-8: Our soul has escaped as a bird out of the snare of the trapper; The snare is broken and we have escaped.Our help is in the name of the Lord, Who made heaven and earth.” 

It is good to recognize and be prepared for the Trapper’s work, but more importantly, it is to recognize what Jesus has done in our lives! David offers  additional wisdom in Psalm 121: 

Psalm 121:1-8: I lift my eyes toward the mountains. Where will my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.He will not allow your foot to slip; your Protector will not slumber.4 Indeed, the Protector of Israel does not slumber or sleep.The Lord protects you; the Lord is a shelter right by your side]The sun will not strike you by day or the moon bynight.The Lord will protect you from all harm; He will protect your life. The Lord will protect your coming and going both now and forever.” (HCSB) 

You may be struggling  with events or people in your life. But take heart, GOD IS THERE FOR US. The Trapper may be prowling but Jesus has pulled its teeth!

Psalm 95:6-8: Come, let us worship and bow down, Let us kneel before the Lord our  Maker.For He is our God, And we are the people of His pasture and the sheep of His hand.” (NASB)