Human Effort

Everything Depends on God's Mercy


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Overwhelmed by the Crashing Waves

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Have you ever been in a raging river or have you ever visited an ocean shore? The waves they don’t stop. The keep coming and crashing and falling. Over and over. The noise so loud that it all becomes overwhelming. Life can be that way. It keeps coming at you and it keeps crashing in. It keeps moving day in and day out. Sometimes I feel like I am standing in that water. The water keeps pushing me without end. It is pushing me so that I might lose my footing. It keeps pushing me under and I pray it does not rise too high or I might be swept away. I feel like can’t catch my breath. I can’t keep up.

Life and the world move so fast while I am being pushed around by these waves. Time never stops and the world keeps on moving. It can be overwhelming when there are people that depend on you when there are things that you want to do. Everyone faces the same reality of the crashing waves and the endless ticking of the clock. No one is immune to these pressures at some point in life.

Those waves did not take me under. I have found a peace in the middle of the crashing waves and the ticking of the clock. Life is hard and I never am able to keep up but peace has found me. Peace has saved me. The Creator of this life and the creator of time itself called to me and said “you are mine”. Does he call your name? Do you hear him calling?

27 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. John 10:27 ESV

Do you hear him calling you? Do you hear his voice? Can you hear him over the crashing waves and ticking clock of time? When I was 11 years old he called my name and he found me. I was lost but he found me. Do you hear him calling your name? In the rough and tumble of this world. When this world abuses me. When I abuse those around me. When I abuse myself. When the waves seek to overwhelm me that is the moment that I need to stop and realize I am one of his sheep and he has called me to follow him where he goes.

For some of you who know him and have a relationship with him that is the good news. For those of you who are running and consumed by the crushing waves now is the time. Now is the moment to submit to the only person, thing, or God who can save. He is the good shepherd.

Psalm 23 is the famous “lord is my shepherd” Chapter. The second verse is my favorite.

He leads me beside still waters. Psalm 23:2

He leads me. He loves me and he has brought me beside still and calm waters. I am at peace even if there is a raging ocean around me. Life is coming at me so fast but I can rest and sit down because he has saved me. Hear in my mind and hear in my heart he has given me peace. He has given me rest. Submit to his authority, submit to his calling you. Listen to his voice. Rest in Jesus the Lord and Shepherd. Listen for his voice. Cry out to him. He is able to rescue. Only he can save.

 


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Daily Devotion: Relational

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God is a relational Creator. He made you to be in relationship with Him. He wants to talk with you. He wants to be involved in your life. He loves you because He made you. Because He is a relational God He also made you to be in relationships with other people specifically with people who are also in relationship with Him.

42 And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. Acts 2:42 ESV

Who are your closest friends? Are they in a relationship with God? Do you ever talk about Jesus and His impact in your life with these friends? If not then you are missing out on one aspect of Jesus that is essential for encouragement and maturity in the relationship with your Creator.

Do your friends push you toward God or pull you away? If they pull you away then I encourage you as a friendly voice that wants only for all the children of God and followers of Christ to take make a few adjustments to build that relationship with your Creator.

9 Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. 10 For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up! Ecclesiastes 4:4-9 ESV

  1. Pray and ask God to provide to you a friend or circle of friends that would be there to encourage you in Christ. Pray this every day for a month write it down and be intentional. Earnestly seek God out.
  2. If you are not in Church then add Church to the prayer list and start visiting. Ask God where he would have you to connect.
  3. Look around and ask this question of all the people you know. “If I spend time with this person would they push me toward God or pull me away?” If the answer is push toward then consider ways to spend time with this person and get in their orbit. You might also need to do the opposite with someone who is pulling you away. Spend less time and remove yourself from that orbit.


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Daily Devotion: The Sweet Taste of Honey

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The typical Apiarist, a person that keeps bees, might hope to harvest anywhere from fifty to one hundred pounds of honey from a single hive in a season. Thousands and thousands of bees working for a single queen are diligent throughout the spring to bring in sweet nectar from the blooming flowers and trees. The end result of their labor is the wonderful honey that holds so many benefits for anyone that receives the sweetness of their effort. The Psalmist writes that God’s word, the Bible, is sweeter and of more benefit than the honey from those busy bees. Take a moment to stop, taste, and savor the words of God as they could be the sweetest part of every day.

How sweet your words taste to me; they are sweeter than honey. Psalm 119:103 (NLT)

 


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Daily Devotion: Worship

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Worship is a wonderful act of expression toward God. Two parts of worship that are central making it powerful are adoration, which is acknowledging how great God is, and thanksgiving to Jesus because of what he has done. “Let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe.” Hebrews 12:28 (NIV) Why not start right now with a worshipful conversation, a prayer, to the Savior with these components of worship: adoration and thanksgiving. Example: “Father in Heaven, Creator of all things, you and you alone are worthy of my devotion. Thank you for making me and giving me life. I thank you for the family and church that you made me to be part of, and I thank you for seeking me out to have a relationship with you. I am unworthy of your attention and I am blessed because of you.”


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Daily Devotion: Is God the Creator of Life?

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Is God the Creator of life? Some would say “no” and may believe that life is simply a random accident. This line of thought would argue that people are born, live, and then are no more. The Gospel of John records a truth about Jesus: “In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.” John 1:4-5 (NIV) God has left a rich and detailed revelation of His eternal creative power for all to comprehend both in nature and in the record of the Bible. The truth of God shines like a light calling people to know that they are loved and have purpose in relationship with Jesus.