Friday, July 30, 2021

Discover Life's Greatest Treasure

What do you treasure most in your life? Most people say their family. Isaiah 33 speaks of the majesty of the Lord God this way. "How great is God? He always protects His people and gives them wisdom and knowledge. Their greatest treasure is their reverence for the Lord."

How does reverence for God become your life’s greatest treasure? First, submit  to him completely and then change what you’ve put in place of the reverence that belongs to God. When you make reverence for God your greatest treasure, he gives you strength and wisdom for making this your life’s priority.

Getting rid of sin and evil in your life is difficult, but it’s necessary for reverence of God to have first place. Hebrews 12:1 tells us to "Rid yourself of everything that gets in the way, especially the sin that holds on to you so tightly." This is possible as you keep your eyes completely fixed on Jesus and keep your heart and mind receptive to his cleansing power. You can do that. God will help. 


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The God who said, “Out of darkness the light shall shine!” is the same God who made his light shine in our hearts, to bring us the knowledge of God’s glory shining in the face of Christ. Yet we who have this spiritual treasure are like common clay pots, in order to show that the supreme power belongs to God, not to us. We are often troubled, but not crushed; sometimes in doubt, but never in despair.  

~2 Corinthians 4:6-8 Good News Bible

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Wednesday, July 28, 2021

Reverence for God – Reclaim the Treasure

There are those who suggest that we’ve lost true reverence for just about everything that deserves it. Instead, we reverence what is transient and temporal, such as success, wealth, and sex. Initially, reverence usually provokes images of worship and devotion that belong to God, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit.


If reverence is accepted as a virtue, then reclaiming reverence and focusing on it as highly desirable would be the right thing to do. Some people in our society believe marriage deserves reverence and devotion. When marriage is acknowledged as deserving loyalty, faithfulness, and respect, then choosing a lifelong partner should be done with God’s approval.

God's word tells us not to conform to this world's image but be transformed to a new way of thinking by understanding God's will for our lives. To have reverence for God and for what he approves provides a quality to life that is worth obtaining. This treasure guarantees security for eternity and peace with God.  

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With these promises ringing in our ears, dear friends, let us cleanse ourselves from anything that pollutes body or soul. Let us prove our reverence for God by consecrating ourselves to him completely.

2 Corinthians 7:1 Phillips – New Testament in Modern English 
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Monday, July 26, 2021

Rediscovering Reverence

History acknowledges that thousands of Russians came forward to mourn the death of Joseph Stalin, knowing he was responsible for the death and enslavement of millions of the Russian people. Despite knowing this, the people still needed to adore and show reverence for him. Reverence is a mindset that elevates someone above normal.

At the other end of the spectrum is one’s losing reverence for what should be honored and respected. Becoming too self-centered is usually the culprit for becoming less reverent in one's thoughts and feelings. The early Christians’ reverence for Jesus was apparent, for they honored him above everything and everyone.


John Greenleaf Whittier offered this prayer for those who had  become indifferent to the virtue of reverence: "Dear Lord and Father of mankind, Forgive our foolish ways! Reclothe in us our rightful mind, In purer hearts Thy service find, In deeper reverence, praise." We need this prayer to help us rediscover reverence for the Lord God and Christ Jesus.  

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Don’t envy evil men but continue to reverence the Lord all the time, for surely you have a wonderful future ahead of you. There Is hope for you yet!

~Proverbs 23:17-18 The Living Bible

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Friday, July 23, 2021

What Indifference Communicates

Indifference is a state of mind that’s contrary to what God created us to be. Indifference portrays apathy, a lack of compassion for others. The verbal and nonverbal message of indifference is, “You deserve what you get, and I could care less." How is it possible to lose reverence for the gift of life and especially for God, its creator?

The unwillingness to be forgiving is associated with the attitude of indifference. Anger and bitterness entombed in the heart eventually transform into indifference. Losing a sense of reverence for life and the pleasure of fellowship with Christ Jesus usually comes as a result of extended pain and suffering.


God will restore those who have lost this sense of reverence and have become indifferent to life. If this is your plight, why not renew your vows to Christ Jesus and let him transform you to the depths of your soul? Ask him to help you make whatever changes that are needed so you can once again feel a sense of wonderment toward the life God has given you.  

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All of them have stubborn minds! Their ears are stopped up, and their eyes are covered. They cannot see or hear or understand. If they could, they would turn to me, and I would heal them.  

~Matthew 13:15 Contemporary English Bible

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Wednesday, July 21, 2021

Expressing Thanks from a Sincere Heart

In the movie Shenandoah, James Stewart plays a hard-working farmer, who in prayers of thanksgiving relates how he cleared the land, plowed the fields, planted seeds, and harvested crops – but was thankful that God contributed to the final product. It took several crises for him to realize that he had little control over the destiny of his family.


Sincere thanksgiving appreciates that life is a gift and that we have the privilege of managing what God has entrusted into our care. The Psalmist encourages us to come before the Lord with thanksgiving, expressing our gratitude for the honor of humbly connecting with the Creator of all things.

Godly thanksgiving should create hope in the one expressing it, for gratitude points to the abundance of God’s blessings. Hope is felt as we recall how God has enriched our lives with his presence and provision. When thanksgiving is expressed from a sincere heart to Christ Jesus, our lives then testify of his love, acceptance, and provision.        ________________  

 O Lord, I will praise you with all my heart, and tell everyone about the marvelous things you do. I will be glad, yes, filled with joy because of you. I will sing your praises, O Lord God.

~Psalm 9:1-2 The Living Bible  

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Monday, July 19, 2021

Thankful Communications to God

An undisputed purpose for working is to purchase the things we desire. While there isn't anything necessarily wrong with wanting the necessities of life, we may forget to express thanksgiving for what we have received. As we communicate our feelings of thanksgiving and appreciation to Christ Jesus, the more clearly his purpose for us is understood.

Discovering God’s purpose for us is paramount, for to do so brings contentment and joy. To express thanksgiving to God creates a deep sense of satisfaction for what we do possess. Expressing thanksgiving helps us to cease our lusting after that which is elusive and out of bounds.


As we focus on communicating thanksgiving for what God has provided, it clears the way for a deeper relationship with the Lord God. Psalm 42:1 proclaims, "As the deer longs for a stream of cool water, so my heart longs for you O God." Communicating gratitude is the antidote for feelings of dissatisfaction and deprivation, so give thanks to God for his goodness, patience, and kindness.

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 Say “Thank you” to the Lord for being so good, for always being so loving and kind...praise the Lord for his loving-kindness, and for all of his wonderful deeds! For he satisfies the thirsty soul and fills the hungry soul with good.

~Psalm 107:1, 8-9 The Living Bible 

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Friday, July 16, 2021

Voicing Your Thanks

Suppose for a moment that all forms of verbal communication were suspended. How then would you communicate to those special people in your life how thankful you are for them? In the busy, rushed world we’ve created, it’s not uncommon to forget words of gratitude and lose touch with thankful feelings. Has expressing thanksgiving become obsolete?


What would your children think if you were to tell them how much you appreciate being their parent? How difficult would it be to say “thank you” for the benefits family life has provided? Caring enough to articulate gratitude that comes from the heart is recognizing that all we are and all we have is because of God's favor and blessings.

Voicing thanksgiving helps us see beyond our immediate situation. Thanksgiving is an integral part of praise to the Lord God. Psalm 138:3 reminds us that when we communicate with the Lord God, when we call out to him, he gives us courage and strengthens our souls. Isn’t that a delightful reason to express thanksgiving?

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I will give thanks to you with all my heart…I will give thanks to your name because of your mercy and truth. You have made your name and your promise greater than everything. When I called, you answered me. You made me bold by strengthening my soul.

~Psalm 138:1-3 God’s Word Translation 

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