Now may the God of peace—who brought up from the dead our Lord Jesus, the great Shepherd of the sheep, and ratified an eternal covenant with his blood—may he equip you with all you need for doing his will. May he produce in you, through the power of Jesus Christ, every good thing that is pleasing to him. All glory to him forever and ever! Amen.— Hebrews 13:20-21
This verse includes two significant results of Christ’s death and resurrection. God works in us to make us the kind of people that would please him, and he equips us to do the kind of work that would please him.
Let God change you from within and then use you to help others.
1 How happy is the one who does not
walk in the advice of the wicked
or stand in the pathway with sinners
or sit in the company of mockers!
2 Instead, his delight is in the Lord’s instruction,
and he meditates on it day and night.
3 He is like a tree planted beside flowing streams
that bears its fruit in its season
and whose leaf does not wither.
Whatever he does prospers.
4 The wicked are not like this;
instead, they are like chaff that the wind blows away.
5 Therefore the wicked will not stand up in the judgment,
nor sinners in the assembly of the righteous.
6 For the Lord watches over the way of the righteous,
but the way of the wicked leads to ruin.
When you read Psalm 1 it is clear there are two ways or paths we can walk. As a believer we can follow God’s word and receive the blessings of the Lord or we can walk in the ways of the wicked. God gives us a choice but what we do with that choice has consequences.
As in Psalm 1 above it states “his delight is in the Lord’s instruction” and “whatever he does prospers”. When we study the bible and live our lives accordingly, the Lord watches over us and we prosper.
However, if you live your life like an unbeliever “you will not stand up in the judgment, nor sinners in the assembly of the righteous” and “the way of the wicked leads to ruin.” God’s word is clear on the consequences of our choices.
Take time today and seek the Lord with all your heart, mind and soul. Worship Him with everything that is within you. The consequence of that choice results in “whatever he does prospers.” Remember, God is true to His word. He will do what He says He will do. Guaranteed.
Personal ambition and servant-hood aren’t always compatible. In fact, they are often at odds with each other. A servant’s goal is to please his or her master in whatever way is required, but personal ambition strives for self-advancement. Jesus’ words from today’s passage must have sounded foreign to the disciples’ ears since, according to the thinking of their culture, greatness was acquired by striving for it, not by serving.
Like them, we live in a world where many people are seeking to make a name for themselves. They set goals, make plans, and do whatever is necessary to achieve what they’ve set out to do. But as Christians, we’re to live by a different standard: exalt Christ, obey His commands, and serve Him faithfully by doing His will, not our own.
We’re not called to gain fame and fortune by leaving our footprints in concrete for all to admire. Our task is to humbly follow in Jesus’ footsteps. Whether our lives have a large or small impact is up to God, not us. The greatest acts of service are not usually flashy displays; more often they’re commonplace gestures like being kind to strangers, ministering to fellow believers, and praying for others.
Jesus humbled Himself, surrendered His rights, and obeyed God even to the point of death on the cross (Phil. 2:5-8). Being His servant begins with the same attitude. It requires helping others when it’s not convenient, doing tasks that are not glamorous, and obeying the Lord even if it’s costly. We aren’t on earth to build our own kingdom but to faithfully serve God as He builds His.
In case you’ve been living in a cave or on another planet for the past 12 months, you might not be aware of the significant issues surrounding climate change and it’s impact on our earth. Typhoons, earthquakes, fires, floods, drought, hurricanes and global warming are just the tip of the iceberg.
Countless headlines are sounding the clarion call to all who will listen that it’s time to take action now before we witness a catastrophic apocalypse right in front of our eyes. All forms of life given to us by God are dying off and going extinct because their habitats are changing or being eradicated by fires, man or climate change.
Will it really take our planet’s eco-system collapsing in front of our very eyes before we’ll do something about it? Depending on our politicians, including the President is like trying to stuff six pounds of crap into a four pound bag. It doesn’t work!
I’ve been following various news and media articles about this very important topic and it saddens me to think we are losing the battle. Will everyone please wake up, call your Congressman or Congresswoman and plead your case. If enough citizens will do this we might have a chance.
If you take the apathetic approach that someone else will make the call or contact, then we are doomed. Take a stand now to save our planet before it’s too late.
“Walk with the wise and become wise, for a companion of fools suffers harm”—Proverbs 13:20
Compromise may be helpful for some relationships, but it can hurt our spiritual journey. Bending God’s principles is risky.
For example, suppose a Christian man makes some new acquaintances, who don’t share his beliefs. Having grown up in the church, he has practically memorized Proverbs 13:20—“Walk with the wise and become wise, for a companion of fools suffers harm”—and recognizes the verse is meant to protect Christians from worldly influences. But he rationalizes that spending time here or there with these friends won’t hurt him. Eventually, however, he ends up spending more time with them than with believers and begins to question his own beliefs. Heeding that proverb might have helped him avoid drifting away from the heavenly Father.
To navigate such situations, we must look ahead for possible danger. Even choices that seem trivial can have far-reaching consequences. But the Lord equips us with a conscience and the Holy Spirit, who sounds an alarm if we veer into dangerous territory.
For us to hear these warnings, our heart must be tuned into God’s Spirit and Word. Relying on our own understanding can lead to trouble. But those who trust the Lord and apply His principles will find straight paths through potentially dangerous situations.
What are your plans for today? If you’re like me and most other Americans, you’ve probably got a list of activities that might include things like, laundry, grocery shopping, washing the car and more. And while you’re at it you may try and slip in some relaxation time.
Let me ask a question. With all the things you’ve got on your plate today, is there any time set aside to read the bible and worship God? I’m here to tell you that this is absolutely the best way to start your day. Why? Because God will tell you what His plans are for you today.
If you were given the option of choosing which plan to follow, I hope your choice will be the smart one and follow God’s plan. His plans are the best and with Him guiding you through His Holy Spirit you will have success in getting things done according to His will for your life. And at the end of the day you will have a great feeling of accomplishment.
So, take some time right now to dig out your bible, read, and then praise and worship God. He’s waiting for you.