Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Proclaiming His Name!

I was reading Psalm 22 today (day 23 of the "Read the Bible in a Year" plan I'm following...or trying to) and really began to focus on verse 22:
"I will tell of Your Name to my brothers; in the midst of the congregation I will praise You"
King David wrote this and I love how he says he will proclaim the name of God to his brothers and praise the Lord among the people. This simply shows us that people need to hear about God and this is a form of our worship of Him. I know that part of my worship (notice "part") of God is telling others about Him and what He has done in my life. I should be talking about the glory of God to all those I'm around in worship of Him. I know I should not be ashamed to speak of God and what he has done for me. I am resolving to be more intentional about proclaiming His name.

I get it that "proclaiming His name" might sound a little strange. Let me make it real life relevant to you. It's as simple as just telling someone what you learned while reading scripture and praying over it or as complex as sharing the story of God with someone. Lately, I've been telling folks I'm around about the importance of daily time in the Word, which I plan to blog about later.

My favorite part about what God revealed to me as I read this verse was that this is a part of our worship of Him. I started to think about the things I "proclaim" to people. For instance, many on Facebook might have seen my status updates about saving money at the grocery store. I'm in a sense, praising the website where I get all the coupon info from. I'm sharing how I'm excited about it and thrilled that I'm saving money. I have no qualms about sharing how to save money on groceries. So why do I have qualms about sharing Christ and what He is doing in my life and what He can do in yours? I need to worship my Savior by telling others about who He is because of how great He is. This is something I should do because I'm so amazed at the greatness of God. Will you worship God today by telling others about Him? Lord, may we speak boldly of Your glory by the power of Your Holy Spirit who lives inside us!

Until the Whole World Knows,
Jonathan Sharp

Monday, October 12, 2009

Trusting God for His Word

Today, I've been reading from Genesis 18:1-15. In this passage of scripture the Lord visits Abraham and Sarah. Abraham runs (in his old age) to the Lord and falls at His feet. He then prepares a meal for the Lord and the two with Him. The Lord then says how He will return in about a year and Sarah will have given birth to a son. Sarah laughs at this remark since "the way of women had ceased to be with her". In v14 the Lord says, "Is anything too hard for the Lord? At the appointed time I will return to you, about this time next year, and Sarah shall have a son." In case you don't know, their son Isaac came right on time. God was responding to Sarah's lack of faith. He asks a question with an obvious answer...NOTHING is too hard for the Lord, no matter how impossible it may seem to us. God then reaffirms what He will do. There is nothing the Lord cannot do! If He says He will do something then He will. The Word of the Lord is trustworthy. As I study the Bible now I'm seeking to do 4 things: highlight a verse or two of the passage that speaks to me, explain what it says, apply what is says and respond to it (to learn this simple method, check out this BOOK). So in responding to this verse I decided to look at the promises of God to His children and set my mind on these things. As I began to scan the New Testament for such promises the Lord brought me to Philippians 1:29, "For it has been granted to you that for the sake of Christ you should not only believe in him but also suffer for his sake." Then quickly 2 Timothy 3:12 came to mind, "Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted." Then I began to think of Jesus' words that we will be persecuted. I'll have to admit that the promise of persecution isn't exactly what I wanted to set my mind on today, nevertheless I can rejoice in it. Our suffering won't be in vain, it will be for the sake of the Gospel. A challenging question is to ask yourself, "Am I suffering for the sake of the Gospel?" If not, do you desire to live a Godly life in Christ Jesus? The second is not void of the first.

Until the Whole World Knows,
Jonathan Sharp