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Trust in The Lord

Psalms 20.7

“Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the LORD our God.”

What is trust? Trust is something that you hold on to and in what you put your faith. In other words, what or who do you depend on? Where do you put your hope for protection in the future? What or whom do you lean on?

Some trust in money, some trust in government, some trust in their education, some trust in their profession, some trust in their country, some trust in their power, some trust in their health and yet some trust in God.

Some trust in chariots, which is trusting in everything else but God. According to the Bible, idolatry is trusting (having faith in) in anything but God. When you think deeply about it, trusting in anything but God will eventually fail. Why? Everything else is temporary. Everything else but God will be gone one day and will then be undependable Even if trusting in all these other things serve you well all your life, they will not be helpful when you die.

The alternative is to trust in the name of The Lord our God. Only He is the creator if the universe. Only He is all-love and all-powerful. Only He can truly be trusted every day of our lives and on the other side of eternity. Trust Him. Trust His Word and obey His word. Something to think about. Luc

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Our Words Are Like A Boomerang

Psalm 15.3 who does not slander with his tongue

The tongue of the Godly man does not destroy. To slander is to use your God-given tongue as an instrument of destruction by stabbing the reputation of another. Your words vandalize their good name. The hunter is very cautious when handling his gun because he understands its powerful danger. We also need to be cautious when handling our tongue because of its dangerous power. Let’s reflect on our words before circulating rumors or reputation-destroying gossip. Prov 18.21 “the tongue has the power of life and death”. Indeed!

We were created to love God and others, to serve Him and to glorify Him. As a mirror reflects light, we glorify God when we reflect to the world His awesome love. Isaiah 43.7 “whom I have created for My glory” Our purpose here on earth is to bounce God’s love to each person that we touch. Slandering others sabotages your efforts to glorify God. Your love-reflecting mirror is now less effective. Your tongue can glorify God, or not.

Slandering others not only affects your glorifying of God, it can also hurt you. Boomerangs are designed to return to the thrower. Slanders not only hurt the target of the boomeranged-slander but also hurts the slanderer. Both reputations will bleed. Don’t ruin your own reputation by gossiping, slandering others and using your powerful tongue to hurt others. Your whispers are not always quiet.

How can we stop destroying others reputation? First we need to stop comparing ourselves to others which often leads to jealousy, envy or a sense of superiority which leads to gossiping and slander. Instead, compare yourself to the Bible. Also, we need to retool our tongues as instruments to glorify God and encourage others. We need to be less silent and make an effort to encourage others. Why does encouraging others often makes us uncomfortable? My mother would always said: “Practice makes perfect”. Could it be that we are so uncomfortable because we are out of practice? God gave us our tongue to glorify Him and to encourage others. Reminds me of another saying that our mothers preached: “If you have nothing nice to say about someone, say nothing”. Something to think about. Luc

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Without-ceasing prayer

Psalm 17.6

I call upon you, for you will answer me, O God; incline your ear to me; hear my words.

“I call upon you” expresses that David, the writer of this Psalm, had a strong belief in prayer. What, then, is prayer? Prayer is man communicating to God. Communication comes from the word common, therefore communication is making my thought common (the same) as your thought. For example, if I am thinking of a dog, I say the word “dog” and you are now thinking of a dog. We communicated because we are thinking of the same (common) thought.

But why should we pray? The Bible answers that question simply and clearly: because “you (God) will answer”. Many of us pray but we don’t truly believe with all our mind, with all our heart and with all our soul that He truly hears, answers, cares and takes action. Some trust prayer as one trusts a lucky charm like a rabbit foot or a four leaf clover granting you luck. Some trust prayers as a last resort, after all other options have been exhausted. Some pray simply because “it can’t hurt”. David simply understood that our creator hears and answers our prayers.

Should we pray in the morning? Should we pray in the evening? Should we pray before eating? Should we pray when we hit a huge pothole while driving on the life-way? Should we pray when our life-way sends us on a detour? Should we pray when everything is going great and you’re driving down a freshly-paved life-way? The answer to all of the above is YES! 1 Thessalonians 5.17 says; “Pray without ceasing”. Pray always.

If we are to pray without ceasing, how should we pray? Some like to pray in silence. Some like to pray out loud. Some like to write a prayer to God. Some like to type a letter to God. Some like to write a song to God. Some like to say a quick prayer while waiting at a red light. Discover your favorite way(s) to pray. The “how” is not as important as the “when”- without ceasing. Something to think about. Luc

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Do you love God?

Psalm 18. 1

I love you, o Lord, my strength.

What do you notice of a couple that is in love? They overflow with smiling, laughing, increase heartbeat, and generalized joy. Their eating may decrease because love preempts food, which reminds me of an expression we have in French when someone’s appetite has decreased:”Es-tu en amour?” “Are you in love?”

If romantic love dramatically affects us in these ways, shouldn’t we also be changed in the same way by the love we have for God?

Love is an emotion and the loving we have for God is a response to Him who loved us first. (1 john 4. 19 “we love because He first loved us”) or Romans 5. 8 “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” Indeed love moves us emotionally but love also prompts us to do. Love is not only a verb but love is an active verb. The verb that God demonstrated His love to us is the verb “died”. For you and me, Jesus died on the cross that was engineered to cause the most painful and agonizing death. The crucifixion gives each one of us the opportunity to receive the gift of the precious life eternal. This torturing of the cross is Christ shouting from the top of His lungs: “I love you”.

When in love, our thoughts are focused on the object of our affection. God continually thinks of you. Should we not also think of Him? We think that we cannot spend more time thinking of Him because we are too time-poor. Would the couple in love accept lack of time as an excuse?

1 john 4.8 says that God is love. God is defined by one word: love. Mathematicians would write: God=love. Our creator, our eternal, our Lord, our maker is defined by one word:love. Something to think about. Luc

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Receiving An Inheritance

Psalm 16.5 “The LORD is the portion of my inheritance..”

“Your long lost aunt passed away and you have an inheritance”. Don’t we all dream of such a scenario?
The Bible says in this verse that the Lord, Jesus, is my share of the inheritance. Through Jesus, because of His sacrifice on the cross, because of His death, burial and resurrection, we have, each and every one of us, an opportunity to go to heaven, if we become Christians as is described in the New Testament.
Why is that important? Once you become a Christian, and the Lord becomes your portion, you have a reservation in heaven.
Also, an inheritance is the perfect analogy for grace. Grace simply means something you get that you didn’t deserve. There are many good people on this earth, but no one is perfect (only one perfect walked this earth which is Jesus). Therefore, since no one is perfect, and all fall short (all sin, Romans 3.23), then heaven is something that you can obtain, but by no means do we deserve it since we all fall short.This is very similar to an inheritance. An inheritance is not something that you deserve and it’s not something that you earn, It is purely a gift, meaning you get something that you didn’t earn or really deserve: it’s simply a gift.
Same with our salvation: grace, meaning a pure gift, something that is not earned or deserved, is possible for each and every one of us, simply by obeying what the Bible tells us about becoming a Christian. And our portion of the inheritance will be Christ, which is the only access way to heaven. Something to think about. Luc

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How to Depend on God

Psalm 9. 10 Those who know you name trust in You.

“Your name”  means God’s reputation, God’s character: to know who God is.  Those who know the Lord will trust in Him.  It’s just like regular relationships with others: you cannot trust someone until you know 2 things :  Need to know their words and their  actions.

How do we get to know God’s words?  The Bible is God’s words. In 2 Timothy 3. 16 the Bible says that every word is inspired (God- breathed). This is the first way to know God and that is to know His Bible.  We need to read the Bible and learn what is in it to learn more about God.

Second, we need to know about God’s actions and the best way to find that out is to know about Jesus. John 1 tells us that Jesus (Word) was with God, the Word is God and the Word became flesh.  Jesus is God (part of the Trinity) and Jesus came to show the action of God’s great love (agape love). He came here to die on the cruel cross for us. 

How do we trust in God? We need the  know the Bible, which is God’s Words, and we need to know His actions ( look at Jesus life, death, burial and resurrection). That will lead to trust in God, just like relationships we have with others: we don’t trust them until we know their words and until we know their actions. Something to think about. Luc

 

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How to Upgrade Your Thanksgiving Lifestyle

Psalm 9.1: “I will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart; I will recount all of your wonderful deeds”

Our doctors will often encourage us to adopt a healthier “lifestyle”: eat healthier, eat more fruits and vegetables and increase exercise. We adopt a healthy lifestyle when all our habits become healthy habits and when our whole heart and our whole life become healthier.
Psalm 9 says to give thanks to the Lord with our whole heart: this is describing a lifestyle of thanksgiving. How do we begin to improve our lifestyle of thanksgiving? The second part of the verse explains: “I will recount all of your wonderful deeds.” Notice deeds is plural. It reminds me of the song “Count your blessings, name them one by one”. Recount all of God’s great blessings in your life, and this will improve your “Thanksgiving Lifestyle”.

When I was in school many years ago, the teacher owned a red pen and she would circle, with a red pen, all the answers that I got wrong. I could have 99 things right on my test but I would notice the one answer I got wrong because it was circled in red. Do we sometimes look at our blessings from God in this way? Do we see what’s “wrong” in our life, circle it in red, and focus on that 1 thing in 99 that is not going right, instead of the 99 that is going right?
Imagine if the teacher could have the time to circle every right answer with a blue pen. Would you then focus on the one that you got wrong or the 99 that you got right? This is the same with being thankful to God. Don’t circle with a red pen the one thing that is not going right in your life. Instead, recount all the wonderful deed that God has done and this will help improve your thanksgiving lifestyle. Something to think about. Luc

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Are most people good?

Psalm 8.4 ‘What is man that you are mindful of him?’

That is a great question that’s been asked over and over since the creation of the world: “what is man?”  When we compare ourselves to God, we are small, insignificant, not important and that should give us a sense of humbleness. However, we and only humans were made in God’s image (Genesis 1.26-27). This is the answer to: what is man. Of all creation, only humans have  been made in God’s image.  Since God is love, we were made to love. Now when we look around, we may see a lot of evil  in the world, a lot of sin, a lot of people not doing what’s right. However, we need to realize that this is a choice that every person needs to make. We were created in His image, we were created to love as He loves, we were created to show His love to the world, but He also gave us free-choice and gives us the choice, every day, to either follow Him, love Him, serve Him, and glorify Him OR to sin.  This means that each one was created for good, each one was created with the potential of good but there are many who chose not to be good, not to be Godly. This means that if we are created in His image, we are born to be good and we are not born as sinners. Is it logical to look at a newborn baby, and think this baby sins? That’s not logical, because we are all made in His image, in His image of love. We are not born sinners, but sin when we are old enough to understand right and wrong and then we chose to not follow His will that is  described in the Bible.

 

Therefore, knowing this, remember that each person was created in God’s image of love, and every soul was created with the purpose of good. Unfortunately, many take their free choice to not love, and not be God-like, but that is their choice: every soul was created for good. This also explains why God sent Jesus to die for us: because we are  valuable enough for such a great sacrifice and we are valuable enough because we were made in His image. Something to think about. Luc

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How to Safeguard Your Life During a Tornado

Psalm 7.1: “Lord my God, I take refuge in You”

I drove through Jackson, TN a few hours after the 1999 Tornado and it was an unbelievable sight: some buildings that were there before the storm were gone after the storm.  Tornadoes are powerful and deadly.

I now live in Mississippi and we have Tornado warnings from time to time.  Usually, a Tornado Warning means that a tornado has been spotted, so every person needs to get to the safest place in the house. We usually end up in our closet because that’s the safest place in our  house.   The safest place, though,  is a storm shelter. These storm shelters have been built in the ground  to protect you against any storms, any  tornado, any severe weather. Those that have a storm shelter, can go into the storm shelter during these storms and feel 100% safe: nothing to worry about

The psalmist, David (from David and Goliath, the shepherd boy who eventually became king) understands deeply that God and God alone is his shelter. David was being chased by king Saul who wanted to kill him. Even though he’s being chased by the king, David still understands that God is his storm shelter: the one place that is safe during the storm.

Where do you go to during times of tornadoes? A tornado can be a crisis or something very difficult that you have to go through. Eventually, every family and every person will go through some kind of crisis: loss  of job, financial problems, loss of health, loss of loved ones, etc. The question is:  where do you turn to during these storms of life?   Some will turn to their bank account thinking: “This will get me through the storms” but that is not a storm shelter. Some will turn to government : “Uncle Sam will take care of me”, but that is not a storm shelter.

Anyone that has lived through a tornado understands how deadly and how scary they are. Most of us will go through at least one personal tornado  every 10 years. Are you prepared?  When we get these Tornado warnings, there will be some kind of announcement on the radio or TV that says something like this: Attention! A tornado warning has been issued. Seek shelter now. Do not delay. Seek shelter now This is your tornado warning:  SEEK SHELTER NOW . GOD is the storm shelter that you need during your life storms. Something to think about. Luc

 

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