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Tag Archives: Psalm

  • Letting God Fill My Empty Places

    Posted on September 25, 2013 by Renee Swope

    Renee Swope

    "You, God, are my God, earnestly I seek you; I thirst for you, my whole being longs for you, in a dry and parched land where there is no water." Psalm 63:1 (NIV)

    It was a source she'd come to depend on. A place she went to get her needs met. But it was never enough; every day she came back for more.

    Filling her jar with water, the woman looked up and heard Him ask her for a drink. He offered her something in return: living water. Unlike the water she came to get that day, He said the water He offered would satisfy her so deeply she'd never thirst again.

    But she had a hard time believing His promise. "You have nothing to draw with and the well is deep. Where can you get this living water?" (John 4:11 NIV) She asked.

    What she didn't realize was that Jesus wanted to satisfy a deeper thirst in her heart—a longing He'd created to lead her heart to Him: the One and only Source that could satisfy her soul.

    All He needed to draw with was His Spirit, for it would draw her near to Him. And as far as the depth of the well, it was her heart He was looking into. She was the only one who could stop Him from reaching the empty places in her heart.

    I know that place of needing Jesus to look into my heart and show me the emptiness only He can fill.

    Like the woman at the well, I've depended on other means to get my needs met. Yet when I look to them, instead of Him, they are never enough.

    I've looked to people: family and friends, bosses and boyfriends, teachers and mentors, my husband and my kids. I've longed for their approval and the affirmation that comes with it.

    I've also looked to possessions and positions and accidentally put my hope in recognition. I've thought "if only I had or could ... then I'd be fulfilled."

    But no matter how much I do or get, it's never enough to fill me up. And it's not supposed to be.

    Why? Because the empty places in our hearts were created to be filled by God alone. The deepest thirst of our souls can only be quenched by Him.

    We see this deep thirst even in King David, who had everything: the highest position, unlimited possessions, and great power, yet none of it was enough. He described himself as parched and thirsty for God:

    You, God, are my God, earnestly I seek you; I thirst for you, my whole being longs for you, in a dry and parched land where there is no water. (Ps. 63:1 NIV)

    Then David went on to describe what he experienced when he drank deeply of God's love:

    I have seen you in the sanctuary and beheld your power and your glory. Because your love is better than life, my lips will glorify you. I will praise you as long as I live and in your name I will lift up my hands. (vv. 2–4 NIV)

    And the same thing happened to the woman Jesus met at the well that day. She drank deeply of His love and was filled to overflowing, and we can be too.

    Just like the woman at the well, God put a longing in our hearts that was intended to lead us back to Him. Only His unconditional acceptance, approval, and affirmation can fill the empty places in our hearts-the deepest thirst of our souls. Until God's love and acceptance is enough, nothing else will be.

    Dear Lord, show me the empty places in my heart and the ways I try to fill them. Then lead me back to You and show me how I can position my heart to be filled and fulfilled by Your promises and the power of Your love. In Jesus' Name, amen.

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    Reflect and Respond:
    What or who do you depend on to fill the empty places in your heart?

    What would change if you allowed God's unconditional acceptance and approval to fill the deepest thirst of your soul?

    Power Verses:
    Psalm 143:8, "Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go, for to you I entrust my life." (NIV)

    Jeremiah 2:13, "My people have committed two sins: They have forsaken me, the spring of living water, and have dug their own cisterns, broken cisterns that cannot hold water." (NIV)

    © 2013 by Renee Swope. All rights reserved.

    Proverbs 31 Ministries
    630 Team Rd., Suite 100
    Matthews, NC 28105
    www.Proverbs31.org


    This post was posted in Daily Devotion, Proverbs 31 and was tagged with Psalm

  • Words that Linger

    Posted on September 18, 2013 by Glynnis Whitwer

    Glynnis Whitwer

    "Let this be written for a future generation, that a people not yet created may praise the LORD ..." Psalm 102:18 (NIV)

    "Well, you get what you pay for!" I muttered under my breath, frustrated as I held the broken weed eater. Were these things supposed to be disposable? Or was my family particularly hard on garden equipment?

    Stomping to the garbage can, I shoved the rickety weed eater in with force. I brushed stray blades of grass from my hands and strode back to the house, thoroughly annoyed with my frugal habits that caused me to "save money" by buying the cheapest model. Again.

    Later that day, I stood in the lawn and garden store, shopping for a replacement. Normally I pick the least expensive one, but obviously that approach wasn't working. Could higher priced weed eaters really be that much better? Deciding to give it a shot, I selected a mid-range model that has now survived my lawn, and my teenagers, for over a year.

    Thankfully, someone, somewhere built a weed eater that lasts longer than a few months. There had to have been intentionality in the design, higher quality of parts and more attention to detail during the assembly for this to happen. The care put into the building of my new weed eater has made a difference.

    Isn't this true of many things in our lives? When a carpenter builds a cabinet to last, it is built with quality woods and hardware. When a seamstress makes a dress to pass down to her daughter, her stitches are tighter and straighter. The same is true with words.

    Words crafted to last are chosen with care.

    The Bible demonstrates this statement. Whether spoken to hearts, etched in a tablet or recorded on a scroll, God made sure His words were written to be passed from one generation to the next. His Words were penned to change lives—the lives of the people who walked through the water, those who tried to walk on it, and ours! Psalm 102:18 evidences this truth: "Let this be written for a future generation, that a people not yet created may praise the LORD ..."

    Words written for a future generation are chosen and assembled differently. They are selected intentionally, pondered over and placed in just the right order. This isn't the sticky note reminder you jot down quickly, ready to toss when the task is done. However, some life-changing words have been written on the backs of envelopes or scribbled on napkins. The medium doesn't matter—the care given does.

    This verse in Psalm 102 speaks directly to me. My written words matter. Whether it's a letter composed to a loved one, a note in a lunch box, an email to my co-workers or a book, I can write the first words that come to mind, or I can consider them carefully. My words can have lasting impact for those I love.

    A few weeks ago I opened my lingerie drawer (the perfect hiding place where children won't look) and withdrew a wrinkled envelope. Sitting on the edge of my bed, I lifted the flap and withdrew a folded letter. Smoothing it out, I saw my husband's teenage sprawl covering the page. I read the words, smiled and refolded the letter. Placing it in the envelope again, I tucked it back under silky things. For now, I keep this letter close to my heart. But one day I'll share it with our children as a record of their parents' bond.

    Because words written to last matter.

    Heavenly Father, thank You for making sure Your words were written carefully for me. They are a lifeline in hard times and help me know and love You more. Help me to give more care to my words, In Jesus' Name, amen.

    Related Resources:


    Reflect and Respond:
    What writing has impacted you most in your life?

    Write a note of encouragement to someone this week.

    Power Verses:
    Jeremiah 30:1-2, "This is the word that came to Jeremiah from the Lord: 'This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: "Write in a book all the words I have spoken to you."'" (NIV)

    © 2013 by Glynnis Whitwer. All rights reserved.

    Proverbs 31 Ministries
    630 Team Rd., Suite 100
    Matthews, NC 28105
    www.Proverbs31.org


    This post was posted in Daily Devotion, Proverbs 31 and was tagged with Psalm

  • Imprisoned by Shame

    Posted on September 9, 2013 by Julie Gilles

    Julie Gillies

    "But you, LORD, are a shield around me, my glory, the One who lifts my head high." Psalm 3:3 (NIV)

    They were only boots. On their own, boots are good. They are functional, sturdy, insulated. But that day they were an embarrassment, the last resort of a 7th-grade girl whose only pair of shoes was soaked. I couldn't walk through the foot-high snow to the bus stop without the boots.

    Maneuvering my dad's huge size 11 boots with my size six feet was a clumsy effort. Slide, slide, lift. Slide, slide, lift. My cheeks burned as I climbed the school bus steps, desperately hoping no one would notice. When the bus dropped us off in front of the junior high, I slide-slide-rushed inside and immediately pulled off the boots. In my stocking feet, I raced through the dirty snow accumulating on the hallway floors, eager to stow the humiliating footwear in my locker.

    All day long friends and teachers glanced at my wet socks and asked why I was walking around without shoes in the dead of winter. "My shoes are soaked," I told them, which was true. I didn't mention that they were at home, or that I'd worn the humiliating oversized boots that belonged to my dad.

    My heart was imprisoned in shame that day at the age of 12. And the shame only multiplied with constant hunger pangs, my parent's ongoing violent fights, and being left in charge of my four siblings more often than was wise.

    As I stepped into young adulthood, shame followed closely. I tried to push it away with other things and tragically sought love and attention from men, believing their affections could somehow make up the deficit of dignity I felt.

    On my own at 17, I was determined to earn my way, determined never to borrow from my neighbors, and determined to have a full pantry. I worked hard and bought lots of nice shoes to line my closet and heart. And I obsessively filled my cupboards with every food I had been denied much of my life.

    No matter what I did, shame clung to my heart and tainted my perception. I believed others saw me as less-than because deep down, that's how I felt about myself. I struggled to overcome the embarrassment from my childhood, but it refused to let me go. Though I was no longer in my shameful past, my shameful past was still in me.

    And then I met Jesus, and He gently began working in my heart. Slowly, through praying for myself, He began a transforming work in me.

    It wasn't an easy or instant process. When I was afraid to believe He could make me whole, He said, "Anyone who believes in [me] will never be put to shame" (Romans 10:11 NIV). When the wardrobe of my heart felt stained and embarrassed, He said, "[You are] clothed with dignity" (Proverbs 31:25 NIV). When I felt condemned by my past sinful choices, He said, "Then neither do I condemn you ... Go now and leave your life of sin" (John 8:11 NIV).

    As my relationship with Jesus grew, it struck me that He treated me with the dignity and honor my soul longed for. As I continued to pray for myself, His exquisite love covered my shameful past and made me feel beautiful. Cherished. Unashamed. Free.

    The mortified young girl who wore her dad's boots to school now walks unfettered with the One her soul loves. As I continue to pray for myself, He continues His transforming work. And now, instead of defining myself by shame and embarrassment, I cling to the truth that Jesus treasures, esteems, and beautifully clothes me.

    Dear Lord, You know the shame and embarrassment of my past, both from what happened to me and through my own choices. Please bring the healing and transformation that only You can. Thank You that in Christ I am cherished, unashamed and free. In the Name of Jesus, amen.

    Related Resources:
    Billy Graham - The Reason for My Hope: Salvation

    In The Reason for My Hope, Graham presents the core message that has guided his life and calling for more than 70 years. Filled with new stories and timeless truth, he once again calls the world back to its spiritual priority as only he can.

    Reflect and Respond:
    Is your heart imprisoned by shame, guilt, or fear? Pray, forgive your offender, and ask God to bring healing and freedom to you both.

    Power Verse:
    Romans 8:28, "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose." (NIV)

    © 2013 by Julie Gillies. All rights reserved.

    Proverbs 31 Ministries
    630 Team Rd., Suite 100
    Matthews, NC 28105
    www.Proverbs31.org


    This post was posted in Daily Devotion, Proverbs 31 and was tagged with Psalm, Shame

  • Undivided Heart

    Posted on September 2, 2013 by Boyd Bailey

    Boyd Bailey

    Teach me your way, Lord, that I may rely on your faithfulness; give me an undivided heart, that I may fear your name. Psalm 86:11

    The way of the Lord is an ongoing education in eternal matters. It is a lifetime of study and learning from the Holy Spirit. A believer graduates from God’s spiritual school only after he graduates to heaven. Even the most fully developed disciple has the next stage of maturity to aspire to. Many lessons learned from the Lord are progressive and contingent on each other. The course of study Christ teaches His child this semester builds on what they learned last semester.

    The core curriculum for a Christian is to rely on the faithfulness of God. The amount of time it takes for us to trust God with a troubled situation is an indicator of our growth in grace. A divided heart of distrust is created when we are offended, frustrated or hurt. The quicker we learn to thank God, forgive and rely on His faithfulness, the quicker we enjoy the grace and peace of our Heavenly Father. Our trust in the character of God builds His character into our life.

    Suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us. Romans 5:3-5

    A man or woman is made weak when their heart is divided by forces competing with faithful living. Their lives can resemble a powerful river with surging water guarded by two river banks, or be severely weakened like scattered tributaries that barely trickle forth water. Pride divides, humility unites. Fear divides, faith unites. Anger divides, forgiveness unites. Selfishness divides, selflessness unites. Harshness divides, kindness unites. Hate divides, love unites. An undivided heart has focused faith in Jesus Christ.

    Lastly, the fear of the Lord is the fruit of your undivided heart. Your life unencumbered by the world’s trappings is free to love, worship and revere Holy God. Your whole heart dedicated to growth in godliness is an influential instrument in the hands of the Lord. The Holy Spirit uses your daily quiet time to keep noisy diversions at bay. Yes, guard your heart with the glue of God’s grace that fills any fissures of unfaithfulness. Your undivided heart fears the Lord’s name and unites around His love!

    Guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long. Psalm 25:5

    Prayer: Heavenly Father, teach me to rely on Your faithfulness, so my devotion to You is wholehearted.

    Related Readings: Exodus 33:13; Ezekiel 11:19; Hebrews 3:6; Colossians 2:2; James 4:7-8

    Post/Tweet today: The Holy Spirit uses your daily quiet time to keep noisy diversions at bay. #undividedheart


    © 2013 by Boyd Bailey. All rights reserved.
    Wisdom Hunters Resources / A registered 501 c3 ministry info@mail.wisdomhuntersdevotional.com / www.wisdomhunters.com


    This post was posted in Daily Devotion, Wisdom Hunters and was tagged with Psalm

  • Mom’s Godly Example

    Posted on August 29, 2013 by Boyd Bailey

    Boyd Bailey

    Turn to me and have mercy on me; show your strength in behalf of your servant; save me, because I serve you just as my mother did. Psalm 86:16

    Mom’s who serve the Lord are a gift from the Lord. Like a cool breeze over a warm sweaty brow they quietly refresh those under their watch. Instinctively, they discern a wounded heart and offer words of comfort. This sensitive servant of Jesus listens for the real meaning behind the spoken words entrusted to their confidentiality. They have attractive moral authority because they model The Way. Mom’s under the influence of Christ relationally influence others for Christ.

    Are you a mom who loves Jesus? Do you celebrate the fruit of your faithful life? Give yourself permission to enjoy the character of Christ that continues to grow in those you have invested in all these years. Behind most godly leaders, parents, pastors, teachers, diplomats, executive assistants, custodians, chauffeurs, care givers and athletes is a praying mom. Because you model Jesus, your child wants to be like Jesus. God gives strength to those who serve Him like momma.

    Truly I am your servant, Lord; I serve you just as my mother did; you have freed me from my chains. Psalm 116:16

    There is freedom when you follow the godly example of your mother. She is the Holy Spirit’s emissary for you to emulate. Serve in the power of the Spirit and you empower humility to have its way in your heart. Serve when you are fatigued and God will give you strength. Serve when you are conflicted and Christ will give you clarity. Serve when you don’t feel like it and your emotions will catch up and care. God strengthens those who selflessly serve like a godly mom.

    Moreover, make sure you do not take advantage of the giving heart of your mom. Help her for a change without her having to ask. Anticipate what she might need, rather than waiting for her to meet your needs. Call her before she calls you. Visit her before she visits you. Pray for her before she prays for you. Share scripture with your mother that strengthens her heart.  Most of all, serve Jesus like a godly mom. Continue to be a person worth modeling, because you model Christ.

    Just as a nursing mother cares for her children, so we cared for you. Because we loved you so much, we were delighted to share with you not only the gospel of God but our lives as well. 1 Thessalonians 2:7-8

    Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank you for godly moms who show us how to serve You.

    Related Readings: 2 Kings 14:3; John 2:5, 13:15; 1 Corinthians 4:16, 11:1; Philippians 3:17

    Post/Tweet today: Moms under the influence of Christ relationally influence others for Christ. #influenceothersforChrist

    © 2013 by Boyd Bailey. All rights reserved.
    Wisdom Hunters Resources / A registered 501 c3 ministry info@mail.wisdomhuntersdevotional.com / www.wisdomhunters.com


    This post was posted in Daily Devotion, Wisdom Hunters and was tagged with Psalm, Mothers

  • Hidden Hardships Behind Closed Doors

    Posted on August 28, 2013 by Sharon Glasgow

    Sharon Glasgow

    "On the day I called, You answered me; You made me bold with strength in my soul." Psalm 138:3 (NASB)

    Hidden behind the door of many homes is the reality of hardship. A devastated home isn't always apparent on first impressions, is it?

    Take Susanna Wesley's life for instance. A quick glance reveals she was married to a preacher in the late 1600s. They had 10 children, two of which grew up to bring tens of thousands of people to Christ: John and Charles Wesley. Sounds like a sweet story, doesn't it?

    But if we look behind the door of her home, hard conditions were the norm. Her husband, Sam, couldn't (or wouldn't) manage their finances well. They disagreed on everything from money to politics. This couple actually had 19 children; sadly, nine died in infancy. Sam left Susanna for long periods of time—sometimes over something as simple as an argument—leaving the duty of raising their children to her alone.

    One of their children was unable to walk. Another couldn't talk until the age of six. Susanna herself was desperately sick most of her life. Their home burned to the ground twice; everything they owned crumbled to ashes. One of her daughters became pregnant out of wedlock. They had no money for food or necessities. Sam even went to debtor's prison.

    Long before Susanna had an inkling of how difficult her married life would be, she made the Lord a promise. When she was young, Susanna committed that for every hour she spent in entertainment, she would give the same amount of time to Him in prayer and in the Word.

    Taking care of the house and raising so many kids made this commitment nearly impossible to fulfill. She had no time for either entertainment or long hours in prayer! This wife and mother worked the gardens, milked the cow, schooled the children and managed the entire house herself.

    It would have been understandable if Susanna reneged on her promise to the Lord. But she didn't. Instead, she gave the Lord two hours a day in prayer!

    As you can imagine with 10 kids, she struggled to find a quiet place to get away with God. So she advised her children that when her apron was over her head, that meant she was in prayer and couldn't be disturbed.

    Susanna was devoted to her walk with Christ, praying for her children, and growing in the knowledge of the Word ... no matter how hard life was.

    This dedicated woman's story may have never been known to anyone but the Lord and her children, except for the fact that her example greatly inspired two of her sons. They both said that their mom influenced them more than any other person.

    John and Charles Wesley became powerhouses for the glory of the Lord. John preached to nearly a million people in the 1700s. He brought revival everywhere he traveled and taught the Word of God! Charles wrote over 9000 hymns, many of which we still sing today.

    In the middle of great hardships, Susanna consistently tapped into her source of strength. She connected intentionally with the Lord every day. It's amazing how her choices influenced not only her family, but also countless individuals, families and worshippers over the years.

    Hidden behind the door of my home, I want my children to see a mom who prays, no matter how busy I am or how hard my circumstances. I'm going to continue letting Susanna's example influence me. How about you?

    Dear Lord, I need Your wisdom, peace and strength. Help me to rely on You and not myself. In Jesus' Name, amen.

    Related Resources:


    A Life That Says Welcome: Simple Ways to Open Your Heart and Home to Others by Karen Ehman

    Reflect and Respond:
    How much time are you spending with Jesus every day in prayer and in the Word?

    Make a plan for how you can increase your time with Him. When your kids grow up, how will they describe how you handled hardships?

    Power Verses:
    Proverbs 31:28a, "Her children arise up, and call her blessed ..." (KJV)

    1 Chronicles 16:11, "Seek the LORD and his strength, seek his face continually." (KJV)

    © 2013 by Sharon Glasgow. All rights reserved.

    Proverbs 31 Ministries
    616-G Matthews-Mint Hill Road
    Matthews, NC 28105
    www.Proverbs31.org


    This post was posted in Daily Devotion, Proverbs 31 and was tagged with Psalm

  • Revived By God

    Posted on August 26, 2013 by Boyd Bailey

    Boyd Bailey

    Then we will not turn away from you; revive us, and we will call on your name. Restore us, Lord God Almighty; make your face shine on us, that we may be saved.
    Psalm 80:18-19

    A spiritual life can go unconscious for lack of belief in God, prayer to God or worship of God. Like a lifeless body on an emergency room gurney  a sudden shock of the heart is needed to revive the temporarily deceased. A revival is necessary where spiritual life once thrived, but is now  nonexistent or only emits a faint pulse. The Lord loves His children too much to leave them in a disconnected spiritual state. His breath fills a follower's lungs of faith with fresh air.

    Is your Christian life on auto pilot? Do you need a jolt from Jesus to bring your faith alive? One evidence of a revived spiritual life is the desire to turn toward the Lord and to turn away from sin. The compass of your soul is focused true north in Christ. Any deviation in direction is brought back into alignment around Almighty God’s agenda for your life. The tug of well meaning people on your time is kept in check, so you have plenty of margin to praise Jesus.

    For this is what the high and exalted One says—he who lives forever, whose name is holy:
    “I live in a high and holy place, but also with the one who is contrite and lowly in spirit,
    to revive the spirit of the lowly and to revive the heart of the contrite. Isaiah 57:15

    A humble and contrite heart unleashes the life of Christ in a spiritual life. So, we lowly approach holy God, who is high and lifted up and who longs to lift us up with our prayers of repentance and rejoicing. Our Heavenly Father is drawn to our desperate need for Him. He reaches out with both hands, lays them on our head and renews our mind with His truth. We call on His name, because He is worthy of our worship and because we need His face to shine on our face in faith.

    Your faith as a child was a good spiritual starting point, but it is only an appetizer to the feast of faith you have in Jesus Christ. Perhaps your appetite for God is starved and needs an intravenous line of love from the Lord Almighty to restore your spiritual life. His life gives you life. Therefore, engage the Holy Spirit with a humble spirit, and He will revive your spirit. Come before Christ with a contrite heart and He will restore the joy of your salvation. God revives!

    Then that person can pray to God and find favor with him, they will see God’s face and shout for joy; he will restore them to full well-being. Job 33:26

    Prayer: Heavenly Father, revive my spirit to follow Your Spirit, give me spiritual life through Your life.

    Related Readings: Deuteronomy 30:3; Psalm 51:10-12, 85:6; Hosea 6:2; Acts 3:21; 1 Peter 5:10

    Post/Tweet today: Is your appetite for God starved? An intravenous line of His love will revive your spiritual life. #revivedbyGod

    © 2013 by Boyd Bailey. All rights reserved.
    Wisdom Hunters Resources / A registered 501 c3 ministry info@mail.wisdomhuntersdevotional.com / www.wisdomhunters.com


    This post was posted in Daily Devotion, Wisdom Hunters and was tagged with Psalm

  • Where Your Tears Go

    Posted on August 23, 2013 by Tracie Miles

    Tracie Miles

    "You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in your bottle. You have recorded each one in your book." Psalm 56:8 (NLT)

    If there is one thing I'm known for, it's crying.

    When one of my little ones scraped their knee, didn't make the sports team, or were hurt by a friend's harsh words ... I cried.

    The first time my sixteen-year-old daughter pulled out of the driveway with her new license, when a boy broke her heart, and as she strolled across the stage last year in her blue graduation gown, I cried.

    So when it came time to move her into her dorm room a couple months later, I feared my tears might be uncontrollable.

    Although I was proud she was going to college, and it was time for her to spread her wings, the thought of her leaving seemed unbearable. The idea of not seeing her sweet smile every day, coupled with concern over her well-being, made my heart heavy.

    I had a flashback of tears shed many years ago as my little girl, dressed in her tiny denim skirt and purple butterfly shirt, stood waving goodbye from the door of her kindergarten room. As I turned to leave my daughter in her dorm room, my waterworks started.

    There were tears of happiness, gratitude and excitement. Tears of sadness, anxiety and motherly worry.

    A part of me wondered if I should be crying in this situation. Many mothers would be thrilled to be dropping a child off at college. Was I being selfish with my tears?

    In that moment of mixed emotions, I desperately needed God's comfort and reassurance, and I found it in Psalm 56:8.

    In Psalm 56:8, God reminds us He is intimately concerned with every aspect of our lives. God doesn't judge whether our sorrow is "valid." But because of His compassion, He catches every tear that is shed. It doesn't matter how big or small, trivial or important, the sorrow might be.

    In this Psalm, David expressed grief over his situation, which was truly dangerous. Saul wanted his own son to be king of Israel and was hunting David in order to murder him.

    This forced David to constantly be on the move as he tried to escape. David was grieved, fearful and unsure about the future. Apparently tears flowed as he poured out his feelings to God. "You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in your bottle. You have recorded each one in your book" (Psalm 56:8).

    David drew comfort in knowing that no matter what he was going through, God had great compassion on him and gathered all his precious tears in a bottle. David trusted God with his life and his future. He wasn't embarrassed about his tears, and we need not be either, even when we wish we could hold them back.

    Life challenges us. Children grow. Seasons of change bump into our normal status quo. When this happens, tears often spring up and efforts to contain them fall short.

    Dropping your child off at kindergarten, college or any grade in between can evoke a variety of anxieties and emotions. As back-to-school season approaches, let's remember God has compassion on us and our children.

    He is present with every tear shed, and we can count on Him to collect them. No matter what sorrow we face today, we can have confidence God cares.

    Dear Lord, thank You for loving my children even more than I do and for having compassion on them and me. Help me feel Your comfort and reassurance when I face new seasons of life and emotional challenges as a mother. Please tuck my babies under Your wing, guide them in their decisions and keep them safe. Amen.

    Related Resources:

    A Life That Says Welcome, Simple Ways to Open Your Heart & Home to Others by Karen Ehman

    The NIV Real Life Devotional Bible for Women with 366 devotions written by the Proverbs 31 Ministries team on everyday life.

    Reflect and Respond:
    Has there ever been a time when you felt God collecting your tears?

    Consider how God has touched your heart with His promise of compassion in your life. Take a moment to acknowledge Him and thank Him.

    Power Verses:
    Psalm 147:3, "He heals the brokenhearted and bandages their wounds." (NLT)

    Psalm 91:4, "He will cover you with his feathers. He will shelter you with his wings. His faithful promises are your armor and protection." (NLT)

    © 2013 by Tracie Miles. All rights reserved.

    Proverbs 31 Ministries
    630 Team Rd., Suite 100
    Matthews, NC 28105
    www.Proverbs31.org


    This post was posted in Daily Devotion, Proverbs 31 and was tagged with Psalm

  • Reliable God

    Posted on August 22, 2013 by Boyd Bailey

    Boyd Bailey

    You are my strength, I watch for you; you, God, are my fortress, my God on whom I can rely. Psalm 59:9-10

    Life will let us down, people let us down, but the Lord is always reliable. What He says, He does. What He does, He does with an eye on what’s best for His children. Our great God and Creator of the universe is as reliable as the sun rising in the East and setting in the West. He is as dependable as water in the deepest oceans and snow on the highest mountain tops. The One who is the only “I Am,” was, and is, and is the One to come. Without question Christ is 100% reliable.

    Therefore, we watch for the Lord to work and answer prayer. We anticipate His grace to govern our hearts and to open doors for Him to be glorified through our lives. We look for the Almighty to bring justice to the outcasts of society. We celebrate churches who care for the poor and the needy. We pray for governments to create moral boundaries for a civil society. We lead our families to carry Christ’s legacy to the next generation. All as we watch for God’s wonderful works!

    Let the one who walks in the dark, who has no light, trust in the name of the Lord and rely on their God. Isaiah 50:10

    Our Savior Jesus Christ is reliable to give us strength for life’s journey. He gives physical strength to soldiers in the heat of battle. He gives emotional strength to defeat our demons of depression and sirens of self-reliance. He gives spiritual strength to traverse over mountains of disbelief and hills of doubt. God is reliable to reveal a way of escape when we feel trapped by temptation’s snare. Our ego tends to grow in the good times, but our character grows most in the difficult times. Praise Jesus for His strength never tires. He’s our ever available refreshment.

    Lastly, our Heavenly Father is our fortress. He is high above our conflict and confusion. He bids us to join Him and rest. When we enter into the gates of His fortress with thanksgiving, our thoughts are drained of anxiety and our perspective gains peace. We sleep well at night knowing our first defense is Almighty God. The fiery darts of the enemy fall harmlessly to the ground, blunted by the rock of our righteous Lord Christ. He is 100% reliable for strength and protection!

    The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. Psalm 18:2

    Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank You for being 100% reliable in the good and bad times.

    Related Readings: 2 Chronicles 14:11; Psalm 9:9, 62:2, 71:3; 2 Corinthians 1:9; 1 John 4:16

    Post/Tweet today: Our ego tends to grow in the good times, but our character grows most in the difficult times. #reliableGod

    © 2013 by Boyd Bailey. All rights reserved.
    Wisdom Hunters Resources / A registered 501 c3 ministry info@mail.wisdomhuntersdevotional.com / www.wisdomhunters.com


    This post was posted in Daily Devotion, Wisdom Hunters and was tagged with Psalm

  • Daily Burden Bearer

    Posted on August 20, 2013 by Boyd Bailey

    Boyd Bailey

    Praise be to the Lord, to God our Savior, who daily bears our burdens. Psalm 68:19

    Believers in Jesus have the Lord who daily bears their burdens. He is a Savior who is not crushed by back breaking circumstances. He reinforces the tentative trust of those under the weighty issues of wealth, sickness, leadership responsibilities, and becoming single again. Yes, a burden becomes too much to bear when it is managed alone. This silent suffering is soul abuse. But in Christ we have the righteous and resilient resources of heaven to persevere through pain.

    Therefore, make sure to engage the eternal grace of God to get you through temporary trials. You do not have to fake it to make it because faith in Jesus Christ as your Lord and Master will give you the godly gumption to get through. Partner with the Holy Spirit to lift from your fleshly shoulders any feelings of doubt, false guilt or the fantasy of living a problem free life. He who lifted your sin burden at salvation remains a strong burden bearer today. God supports you daily.

    Cast your cares on the Lord and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous be shaken. Psalm 55:22

    Just as a nurse cuddles and carries a newborn, so your Heavenly Father cradles you in His sustaining care. Any back and forth movement you may feel against your faith is the soothing rock of your comforting Savior, Christ Jesus. When He holds you close to His breast, you can rest in Him. Resist fear’s desire to pull away and flee from the palpable peace of God. A soul snuggled against the chest of deity will not be shaken. What He holds close, He keeps secure!

    Hallelujah, praise be to the Lord, to God our Savior who daily bears our burdens. We praise Him in the morning, we praise Him in the noontime and we praise Him in the evening for removing our anxieties with His loving lift of compassion. Because He is our burden bearer we are freed to help carry the burdens of those stuck in sin or beat down from life’s challenges. What a joy divine to be Jesus to someone who needs to see Jesus. Thank your Burden Bearer, Jesus Christ!

    Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ. Galatians 6:2
    Prayer: Heavenly Father, what a joy to know You bear my burdens daily, so I am free to help others bear theirs.

    Related Readings: Psalm 81:16; Isaiah 9:4, 10:27, 46:4; Matthew 11:28-30; 1 John 2:6

    Post/Tweet today: He [Jesus] who lifted your sin burden at salvation remains a strong burden bearer today. #dailybearsburdens

    © 2013 by Boyd Bailey. All rights reserved.
    Wisdom Hunters Resources / A registered 501 c3 ministry info@mail.wisdomhuntersdevotional.com / www.wisdomhunters.com


    This post was posted in Daily Devotion, Wisdom Hunters and was tagged with Psalm

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