Out of nothingness came life. Out of the emptiness and the void, came we. God formed us out of the dust of the ground, breathed into us the breath of life and made us living beings. How great is our God?
“When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is man that you are mindful of him, and the son of man that you care for him?” (Psalms 8:3)
We mere humans are dust. Yet God loves us so much that he was willing to sacrifice his only son Jesus so that we may live, live free from the penalty of sin, and live forever. How great is our God?
From edge to edge of this deep vastness called the universe, God has set the foundations of our firmament. He gave us dominion over all things on the earth. He provided us food with which to feed ourselves, and clothes to keep our fleshly bodies warm. How great is our God?
We are but bones, sinews, flesh and skin covering it all. We have seventy years given to us, eighty by reason of strength. Our lives are like a vapor, but even King David asked: Who are we that God should be so mindful of us? How great is our God?
Out of the emptiness, God made us, and through Jesus, he fills us with the Holy Spirit and saves us. God is great.
Our nature dictates that we ought to hold a grudge against anyone who would slight us. Should we find ourselves angry with someone, our nature would want us to take it further. It is within us not to want to forgive.
But God showed us what forgiveness really is. In everything we do, no matter how awful, no matter how horrible, no matter how ugly it is, God will forgive us, if we wholeheartedly repent of our sins. It is within His nature to want to forgive.
No greater sacrifice had anyone made than that made by Jesus when He gave His life on the cross for us sinners:
“By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers.” (1 John 3:16)
How much more would His sacrifice mean to us if we had seen with our own eyes Jesus bound, whipped, tortured and nailed to the cross, if we knew that cross was meant for us?
In the same way, we have to let go of grudges, slights and anger. Instead, we have to love those who cause us hurt. Bless those who want us harm. Forgive those who wish to do us evil. And even if others did not mean to offend us in any way, but in our old nature, we might want to do them evil, we must allow the Holy Spirit to lead us to change. Our nature will then be as God’s nature; and through this, we will have the power to forgive as God forgives.
God promised He would never leave us or forsake us. That is a promise from God Almighty, the creator of heaven and earth. His power is beyond measure. His strength is without end. And his mercy never fails. As His children, we ought to seek every opportunity to honor our Father whenever He makes good on His promises. His Yes is as sure as the sunrise:
“For all the promises of God find their Yes in him. That is why it is through him that we utter our Amen to God for his glory.” (2 Corinthians 1:20)
Of all the promises given, the one most important is the gift of the Holy Spirit (John 14:15-17). If we love Jesus our Savior, keeping His commandments, giving God the glory in all things, He will impart the Holy Spirit to us and He will dwell in us forever. We will know God and He will know us. Our sins will be no more, and even when our flesh ceases to exist, we will live again. We will put on a new body, without defect, and it will be perfect in every way. We will be perfect in every way.
It all starts with believing Jesus is the Christ, who died for us on the cross. When we accept Him as our personal savior, God promises we will rise again to new life, filled with glory, honor, and joy, brimful and running over.
Now is the time to believe. Now is the time to claim those promises.
The ability to persevere through a trial only comes from God. He will provide the strength to overcome. And through his spirit, we have the power of longsuffering. Dark days become light, tidal waves become calm waters, and our belief in God never leaving us or forsaking us supplies us with patient endurance that ultimately quiets us. The Apostle John in the Book of Revelation mentions how God will protect the church during tribulation:
“Because you have kept my word about patient endurance, I will keep you from the hour of trial that is coming on the whole world, to try those who dwell on the earth.” (Revelation 3:10)
Having patience is waiting, waiting on God, and waiting on his promises for deliverance. If the fiery trial (1 Peter 4:12) is temptation, God will provide a way of escape, for he will not allow us to be tempted beyond our ability (1 Corinthians 10:13). When we fix our eyes on him, his mind will lead us to have the endurance to continue in our righteous walk. No one can take that away from us. Our times of sorrow are opportunities for God to perfect us in the image of his glory. Once we accept Christ Jesus as our savior, the unbearable becomes bearable because no one has suffered more than his son has.
Therefore, let us strive for patient endurance, giving to God the glory for being the creator of all things, the sustainer of all things, and the God Almighty of all things.
As many times as I cry out to God, he is always there. He listens to my pleas, he answers me in the stillness of the night, and when I am most vulnerable, he sends someone to comfort me. The fiery trial remains, but through my prayers I feel him listening to me; I feel him reassuring me. His word renders my troubles as a fleeting wind. He provides the perseverance I need to move forward. He supplies the strength I need to overcome adversity:
“I am weary with my moaning; every night I flood my bed with tears; I drench my couch with my weeping. My eye wastes away because of grief; it grows weak because of all my foes. Depart from me, all you workers of evil, for the LORD has heard the sound of my weeping. The LORD has heard my plea; the LORD accepts my prayer. All my enemies shall be ashamed and greatly troubled; they shall turn back and be put to shame in a moment.” (Psalm 6:6-10)
Nothing is so great that God cannot intervene on our behalf. His power is beyond measure, and through it, he sustains all things. Therefore, how hard would it be for God to rescue us in our time of need? For I can say, nothing in this lifetime is greater than the crown set aside for us in the coming age. The treasures of this world will rust and wither, but our treasures in heaven will be without end.
No matter what I suffer in this life, God is my rescue.
True happiness is to love God. Everything else, the pursuit of riches, the wanting desires of the heart, the need to love and be loved, aside from God, will leave us empty and continually searching for purpose and meaning. There will come a time in our lives when we will stand before God and he will ask, “What have you done with your life?” And if all we could say is, “I became a world-renowned pianist,” or “I wrote hundreds of bestsellers,” or “I climbed Mount Everest,” or “I became CEO of the largest and most successful company on Earth,” God will then ask, “Did you love me?”
God wants those he has chosen to be happy. The only way to gain that happiness is to love him, making everything else secondary to that love. Jesus puts it this way:
“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.” (Matthew 22:37)
Apart from loving others, loving God should be our calling throughout our lives. No other commandment is greater than to give oneself wholly to God in service for his glory. That means not only in word but also in action. God would like us to love him in a way that would change us to think like him. What would Jesus do? But the question really is, what would we do apart from God? If we did not love God, what would our lives look like without that love? We do not want to stand before God one day to have him ask, “Did you love me?”
True happiness is to love God.
Oh, if I could only wrap myself in the word of God and make it my blanket, my head would snuggle in its phrases and my heart would feel its warmth in delight. If within its pages I could lose myself and never return, I would ask God for others to do the same, and swim in the ocean of its truth to experience the breadth of God’s love.
God’s word is life. God’s word is love. God’s word is everything anyone would ever want, because everything is what God’s word is. It discerns. It reveals. It cuts to the bone to expose the innermost secrets:
“For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” (Hebrews 4:12)
Oh, how wonderful God is to have opened salvation to us through Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith. For only through Jesus, the Word, can we attain salvation (John 1:1-4, 14). Line upon line, verse upon verse; every word from God’s mouth is a light on to my feet. It builds. It edifies. It supports the church on a cornerstone others have rejected. And it floods the spirit of those wanting to know what truth is.
Be enraptured by God’s word. Be enthralled by it. Grow in its knowledge and in its depth. Know that he gave us this moment in time to draw nearer to him in absolute adoration and joy for him. For the joy of reading God’s word is life on to the reader.
Let us read life into our lives.