DayBreaks for 9/26/16 – Can You Believe It?

 

DayBreaks for 9/26/16 – Can You Believe It?     

There are verses in the bible that are not all that exciting. For example, you can find a lot of them in Numbers! But then there are verses that blow us away…or at least, they should. Here’s one such passage:

Romans 8:30-31 (NLT) – And having chosen them, he called them to come to him. And having called them, he gave them right standing with himself. And having given them right standing, he gave them his glory. What shall we say about such wonderful things as these? If God is for us, who can ever be against us?

Please pay special attention to the last sentence and the first five words: If God is for us…  Paul isn’t really asking the question or posing a hypothetical. He is stating a fact based on the truth of the preceding verse where he declares what God has done for us through Jesus…and he’s calling those verses in context to witness to the fact that God IS for us…the “If” is only there to be juxtaposed against the last six word: ..who can ever be against us?

But here’s the question: do you believe God is for YOU? Can you believe that He is NOT against you? Far too many, even Christians, think of God as sitting upon the circle of heaven looking down at us with a cosmic flyswatter just waiting for us to make the slightest mistake so He can squash us like a fly. And then they picture God laughing over whatever remains of us. Or, they see Him as furiously angry with them – eager to destroy as the scent of souls in hell fill is nostrils.

But that is 180 degrees opposite of what Paul has proven. If God is against us, would He have given His Son to die in agony for us? Would God has put Himself through the torture of watching His only begotten Son writing in agony if God was not for us? No way! 

What does it mean that God is for you? It means several things:

FIRST: God is not your enemy. Not once you have come home to him.

SECOND: God is not working against you nor wishing/causing bad things to happen to you. He works FOR you…so powerfully that even the bad things that do happen He is working out for your good.

THIRD: God will not let any enemy stand against you successfully. Not even the ruler of hell.

Perhaps you’re feeling like God can’t possibly be for you…a horrible sinner full of evil acts and even more full of evil thoughts and inclinations. But He is for you. And because of that, you’ve got the best Friend in the universe and He is absolutely crazy about you!

If you struggle to believe this good news, repeat to yourself over and over, day after day, until you come to believe it: God is FOR me!

PRAYER: We struggle to believe You could possibly be for us, God, because we do see our sin and frequent failures. Give us the faith to believe these inspired words from Your Spirit and let us rejoice in the this incredible truth! In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Copyright 2016 by Galen C. Dalrymple. All rights reserved.

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DayBreaks for 9/05/14 – The Old Man and the Scorpion

DayBreaks for 9/05/14: The Old Man and the Scorpion

From the DayBreaks archive, dated 9/03/2004:

Henri Nouwen told a story about an old man who sat on the edge of the Ganges River in India, meditating every morning.  On one particular morning, after he was done with his meditation, the old man opened his eyes and saw a scorpion struggling for its life in the water nearby.  As the waves washed the scorpion closer to the shore, the old man reached out a withered old hand to save the scorpion.  As he touched the scorpion, the scorpion stung him painfully on the hand.  Pulling his hand back, the man watched the scorpion continue to struggle.  After about a minute, the old man felt compassion again on the struggling creature, and once again, he reached forward with his hand to save the animal.  This time, the scorpion stung him so badly that his bloody hand swelled grotesquely and the old man’s face was contorted in pain.

A passerby watched this with fascination, and shouted, “Old man, what’s wrong with you?  Only a fool would risk his life for the sake of an ugly, evil creature.  Don’t you know you could kill yourself trying to save that ungrateful scorpion?”

The old man turned his head and looking into the stranger’s eyes, said “My friend, just because it is the scorpion’s nature to sting, that does not change my nature to save.”

What a tremendous parable to explain God’s action towards us.  How many times have we “stung” Him as He’s reached out to us!!!!  And yet, wasn’t Jesus’ response much like that of the old man: “Father, forgive them, they do not know what they’re doing.”  Praise God that it was His nature to save, regardless of our nature to hurt Him!

Copyright by 2004 Galen C. Dalrymple.  ><}}}”>

PRAYER: Thank you, Jesus, for Your nature to save!  In Jesus’ name, Amen

DayBreaks for 02/04/13 – His Good Intentions

DayBreaks for 02/04/13 – His Good Intentions

Good IntentionsProverbs 3:5-8 (NLT) – Trust in the LORD with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding.  6 Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.  7 Don’t be impressed with your own wisdom. Instead, fear the LORD and turn away from evil.  8 Then you will have healing for your body and strength for your bones.

What does God want for you?  Does He want you to be a millionaire?  Probably not…certainly not if He knows it would be a blessing you cannot handle.  Does He want you to be president, or a pro athlete, or famous?  Most likely not. 

There are those who seem to think that the God of heaven is a Scrooge, a miser and sadist who enjoys watching people wiggle like worms as they are strung onto a hook.  There are many who think that God doesn’t want or enjoy people laughing – that He’d rather have us all be gloomy faced, down-cast and miserable.

Thankfully, those things are not true of God, but we often act as if we think they are.  The first eight verses of Proverbs 3 (with many other verses) clearly show that God wants to bless us – that He has good intentions for you!  But we’re always skeptical of what God is up to – always questioning Him and His motives and through our questioning, impugning His character.  When we spend so much time questioning Him about anything, we aren’t trusting Him or believing that He has good intentions for us.  Think I’m exaggerating?  Have you ever thought like this: “Things have been going too good for too long – I know God is up to something and something bad will happen soon.”  Or, you may think that He’s forgotten you. 

What does the verse say: “The steadfast love of the Lord endures forever.”  Will we believe it? 

Jesus said that abundant life, not an intolerably miserable life, is what He’s come to give to us.  Let’s stop questioning God’s desires for us.  He wants good for us – not harm.  If He wanted anything other than good for us, He would not be true to His infallible and unchangeable character.

PRAYER: I am so glad that You want to bless us, to only do what is good and right for us!  Help me trust more in Who You are in your unchanging, forever-loving character!  In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Copyright 2013 by Galen C. Dalrymple.

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