20 I eagerly expect and hope that I will in no way be ashamed, but will have sufficient courage so that now as always Christ will be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death. 21 For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. (Phil. 1:20-21)
To reach that level of determination is a matter of the will, not of debate or of reasoning. It is absolute and irrevocable surrender of the will at that point. (Oswald Chambers)
The year ahead will be another prayer adventure. Over the past 4 years the Lord has had me on a prayer adventure that has changed the DNA of our church. He has reminded me in these last weeks of 2016 there are still challenges he laid out that I’ve not stepped up to in prayer or in faith. Continue reading “The call to prayer — 2017”
For the month of January I have challenged myself with the YouVersion devotional plan reading Oswald Chambers to begin the year. Nearly every day I have been challenged in some way by a simple sentence or two.
Today was this:
When you have no vision from God, no enthusiasm left in your life, and not one watching and encouraging you, it requires the grace of Almighty God to take the next step in your devotion to Him, in the reading and studying of His Word, in your family life, or in your duty to Him. It takes much more of the grace of God, and a much greater awareness of drawing upon Him, to take that next step, than it does to preach the gospel.
What is needed is a steady perseverance. Day in, day out, we need a steady obedience to God. Week by week, we need to be reminded in worship of the great love poured out for us as we partake in the Table. We need to see this incarnated act of love demonstrated in the Table. We need to taste his love and his sacrifice for us.
We need an incarnational Christianity that keeps us moving forward with perseverance and steadfast love. This is the power of participating in worship at the Table of the Lord every week.
The reason some of us are such poor examples of Christianity is that we have failed to recognize that Christ is almighty. We have Christian attributes and experiences, but there is no abandonment or surrender to Jesus Christ. When we get into difficult circumstances, we impoverish His ministry by saying, “Of course, He can’t do anything about this.” We struggle to reach the bottom of our own well, trying to get water for ourselves. Beware of sitting back, and saying, “It can’t be done.” You will know it can be done if you will look to Jesus. The well of your incompleteness runs deep, but make the effort to look away from yourself and to look toward Him. — Oswald Chambers
Trusting God for TODAY, for the MOMENT, is monumental. Trusting him for provision… with my time… my plans…
A prayer of Oswald Chambers:
Detach me, O Lord, from the things of sense and time, and usher me into the presence of the King. Keep the precincts of my mind and heart entirely Yours.
Help me trust, O Lord!
O Lord, enchain me to Yourself with great bonds of adoring love; encircle me around with Your Providence for Your purposes; enlarge me until I am more and more capable of being of use to You.
Whenever God gives a vision to a Christian, it is as if He puts him in “the shadow of His hand” (Isaiah 49:2). The saint’s duty is to be still and listen. There is a “darkness” that comes from too much light—that is the time to listen. The story of Abram and Hagar in Genesis 16 is an excellent example of listening to so-called good advice during a time of darkness, rather than waiting for God to send the light. When God gives you a vision and darkness follows, wait. God will bring the vision He has given you to reality in your life if you will wait on His timing. Never try to help God fulfill His word. — Oswald Chambers
I have begun a 30 Day challenge on YouVersion to read Oswald Chambers devotionally entering into 2016.
I want to quit. This guy is tough on me!
We should be pouring out our lives, investing our total beings, not drawing on Him to satisfy us… That means lives of pure, uncompromising, and unrestrained devotion to the Lord Jesus, which will be satisfying to Him wherever He may send us. Beware of anything that competes with your loyalty to Jesus Christ.
Are we more devoted to service than we are to Jesus Christ Himself?
Ugh. I need to find another devotion read!
Lord, I am too selfish. My focus is too often on what I “get” from you rather than what I can do to enter into YOUR life. May my devotion be toward you in 2016.