Meditation: August 16

“Draw near to God and He will draw near to you” (James 4:8). 

There is much about God that is attractive. His attributes will have an appeal to every part of our being if we are made aware of them. The Holy Spirit will provide the faith to see and understand what is missing. The necessary things are offered to us to fulfill us providing both life and godliness. Without this faith we are left empty, reaching out for things around us and slipping deeper into despair. It is the distractions that allure us away from being drawn near to God. To be drawn to God is: empowered to resist the devil in all of his deceptive ways. The world, the flesh, and the devil no longer will control you once the beauty of God’s holiness is realized. He is the Lover of your soul and your soul will know this perfectly well. He draws us with cords of love. We are drawn in response with the assurance of faith. He restores us with a confidence that all is well because we abide in the secret place of God. 

Meditation: August 15

“Therefore we must give the more earnest heed to the things we have heard, lest we drift away. For if the word spoken through angels proved steadfast, and every transgression and disobedience received a just reward, how shall we escape if we neglect so great a salvation, which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed to us by those who heard Him” (Hebrews 2:1-3). 

To “give the most earnest heed” is stretching in order to understand what has been spoken. It is to hasten and to fasten one’s eyes upon the truths revealed. To commit ones heart to them. The reason this is necessary is because our minds alone cannot contain all that is needed. Without a heart commitment, it will appear as if there had been no exposure to such life- transforming truths. God does not judge on the basis of what one avails oneself to hear. He judges on the basis of the availability of knowledge at that time. If one is privileged to know the truth but decides to opt out of being where truth is imparted, the neglect on his part would be the criteria on which he is judged. It is our responsibility to be where God’s Word is. Jesus paid the price for our salvation. No more can be done than what was fully accomplished by Him. Salvation is ours when His offer is fully accepted. Then our hearts are applied to wisdom to understand what has been freely given to us. Then the Holy Spirit will see to it that the Word of God is fully assimilated into one’s life. 

Meditation: August 14

“Watch therefore, and pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will come to pass and to stand before the Son of Man” (Luke 21:36). 

The forewarnings of Jesus was to be alert and remain alert in times when temptations may catch you unaware. They come in many disguises and it is usually the self-confident that end up falling prey to the wiles of the devil. The observation must go beyond appearance, but the very nature of things must also be called to your attention. It should not merely be the intent to gain whatever benefit may be immediately gained, but paying attention as to where the engagement is headed. “There is a way that seems right to a man, but the end thereof is death.” Watch how others have been allured and fell into the same trap that is being set for you. Look at the outcome of their lives. Would you be the exception or become a person with many regrets? Pray to God for wisdom. Do not trust your own judgments, but seek God for what He knows about all things pertaining to you. Then you will be saved from the wrath to come against all ungodliness. You can stand before the Son of Man who understands your temptations, but provides for you a way of escape. 

Meditation: August 13

“This is the day the Lord has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it” (Psalm 118:24). 

God made the day and the night. Each day has a name. Each day has its own special significance when viewed from the perspective of eternity. From eternity God made this day. He brought His creation into time and allowed me to engage the moments and gain the experiences awaiting me. It is not to be taken for granted because I am in need of His mercies and grace in order to effectively use the time allotted me. If I know this, I am appreciative of the freshness of His love for me today. “This is the day that the Lord took special attention in making.” It is now lifted from the pages of eternity to illustrate God’s purposes and intents within time. It is not just another day, but this day is the day! It was God’s intention for me to be alive and to see this day. Before it becomes too common, I will rejoice. I will begin this day thinking about the gift of life and the gift of time and take the opportunity to rejoice in it. The eternal significance of everyday life: The plain and the ordinary are elevated to a level where it takes on a new and different meaning. It cannot be ordinary again because God is there. He lifts from the pages of routine to illustrate His purpose and intent. 

Meditation: August 12

“Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men” (1 Corinthians 1:25). 

Contained within what we see is a truth that is much deeper than we have come to realize. From the surface, it does not make sense. There are many other things that appear to warrant more attention than this. To the fool, it appears as foolishness. He stumbles over his own thoughts and intellect. The Source of both true knowledge and life are hidden from him. He wonders why there would even remain those who would be so foolish as to waste their precious time on superstitious thoughts that would restrict his freedom of action. “Do what you feel” is his motto. His idea of God is a permissive being allowing him to remain himself void of conviction. But God looks into our past and examines why we think the way we think and do the things we do. He looks ahead knowing where all actions lead. Fools rush to their demise. Their blindness causes them to throw caution to the wind. Yet one seemingly foolish word from the Lord is sufficient to save him. Are there any wise enough to listen? 

Meditation: August 11

“He who has My commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves Me. And he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and manifest Myself to him” (John 14:21). 

The attachment to God’s Word is the same as being attached to all of His promises. The heart must be made ready to contain the infusion of life that comes as result of God speaking into it. It is not just the mind even though the message must pass through the mind. The heart must agree wholly with the Spirit who causes the Word to come alive within the Christian. The result is a quality of love that surpasses any effort on the part of the person to love Jesus. It is His love deposited within the heart and directed towards Him without reservation. It is His power that preserves the believer through making the Person of Jesus Christ known in every situation. He is not absent when things are tough. He does not conceal His identity in the midst of one’s greatest trial. He is there causing all things to work together for the good of all who have His love within them. He not only manifests His love, but His glory is revealed. 

Meditation: August 10

“And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all peoples to Myself”  (John 12:32). 

Jesus spoke of the benefits and advantages of His being lifted up. It was not the elevation that many seek. It was not a platform of prominence, or the glitter and glamour of celebrity. It was the execution of the intentions of His enemies against Him. If they carry out their agenda, God will use it as a means to draw every people-group to a life of surrender. They would come to the very cross and die with Him. 

What the devil intended for evil, God meant for good. His death was His life’s purpose. The dynamics of the death of Jesus Christ is too complex to fully explain. He became sin as a sinless sacrifice for our sins. The message is foolishness to those who consider themselves to be too wise and prudent even to need it. But there are those who sense the weight of sin damning their souls to hell. They are appreciative that the consequences of their fallen nature destined to express itself will not be held to their charge. 

The message of the cross causes an explosion among people. Hope for eternal life is signaled to a terminal generation whereas a glimmer of hope reaches their soul. They rush in the direction of the new light that burst forth before them. “Draw me away,” the Shulamite woman cries out to her Beloved. The power of the Holy Spirit implodes and all kinds of people are drawn in a strange direction of death to their self-life with a promise and hope of resurrection. Do you desire the life that is lived after death or the death that denies true life because it is too busy giving expression to its own emptiness trying to just make a living? 

Meditation: August 9

“For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain” (Philippians 1:21). 

Life takes on a new meaning once Christ has come into the heart of the believer. He does not merely exist among the other things once deemed important, but rather sets the priorities for his existence. Any other place given to Him constitutes a warm feeling in His regards, but not the quality of life He promises and died to give. This was the revelation given to Paul, the Apostle by the Holy Spirit. “For me, the meaning of life has shifted. For me, it’s no longer a matter of consulting with God as to whether it is permissible for me or not to have my own way. For me, to live is for Christ to fully live His life through me.” 

This ought to be the earnest desire of each and every Christian. This is a life of discovery whereas one is freed from pretense or attempting to force himself to do what he thinks that Jesus would do. But rather discovering in his own flesh the life and works of Jesus personally. 

“To die is gain.” Death died on the Cross when Jesus was crucified and rose from the grave. The victory of resurrection life becomes our victory as we identify with His death. The more one dies to self, the more he provides the opportunity for Spirit Life rise within Him. It eradicates the fear of physical death because the assurance of God’s promise become ever present; “To live is Christ, and to die is gain for me.” 

Meditation: August 8

“So teach us to number our days that we may gain a heart of wisdom” (Psalm 90:12). 

When we were born, we were given a name and assigned a number. Our last name identifies where were from or the origin of our birth while our first name identifies where we are going, or our future. A good name is worth more than silver and gold. Our names reflect our character. Expectations are placed upon us as a result of being named or branded. We are also classified by number. As a citizen, we are numbered by the Social Security Administration. You are not merely John or Jane Doe, but you have both a name and a number. 

God knows us by name and has also given each one of us a number. Each name is different and each number is as well. The request of the Psalmist was, “Lord, teach us….” The instructions requested apply to both name and number. We may say, “Lord teach us to know who we really are,” so that we would not live a presumptuous life. He knows our name and what ought to have been the fullest expression of our name. Our parents may have done the best they could, but there are some things about us that only God can teach us. Then, “Lord, instruct us to number our days.” We need to be made aware that the time allotted us is limited. 

None can tell the number of their days. Without the knowledge that time is limited, their hopes and dreams may rot on the scrapheap of possibility and potential because time is too short, and life is not long enough to finish what was intended because time ran out before they could accomplish all the things abandoned by death. 

The Psalmist was aware of the instructions that could only come from God alone. “Teach us to number our days.” The request was, “Lord, teach us to make every day count in doing what ought to be done. Time is too precious to waste and eternity is too long to reflect with regrets over wasted time. This day is a gift from God. What we do with it matters to Him. When we treasure both name and number, we will gain a heart of wisdom. 

Meditation: July 21

“Storing up for themselves a good foundation for the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life” (1Timothy 6:19). 

The grace of God produces works of righteousness. It is from a heart of love that we do the will of God and not for the sake of earning His favor. If we love Jesus Christ, we will do His will and find pleasure in doing it. Those who are rich often think of themselves as having all that they need. Paul’s admonishment was not that they become impoverished, but rather to make sure that their hearts are not held captive by the things of this world. Those who find greater pleasure in the here and now, but lack a heavenly perspective, will sacrifice eternal life for what their money is able to buy them. When Christ is our foundation we store up riches for the time to come. Every act is centered in our love for the Lord and given full expression through how we use our resources. We participate with the Lord in what He is doing on the earth as fellow laborers in His garden and in the construction of His house. After our work is complete, we will spend eternity with Him giving full expression of what has been developed within us as the result of our labor of love.