Thursday, March 1, 2012

In All Fairness

As some know I am trying to memorize Psalm 18, it's only 50 verses... hahaha only.... anyway in verse 20 is says that the Lord rewards according to our righteousness, according to the cleaness of our hands...  This can either be a huge comfort or cause a great fear.  How clean are our hands? What is our righteousness compared to God's? After all His standards are usually higher than ours right? On occation our standards match His, but are never higher. How can you get higher than perfect?

Our righteousness is like a filthy garment in the sight of God. But He gave us a solution - Jesus. So it's not by our own effort that God rewards us, but by the grace of God thru Jesus that we receive our rewards. Does this mean we get to do "what ever" we want? Certainly not, but it is a great comfort that when we are in right standing with Jesus we receive a righteous man's reward. 

The fear comes when we truely look at ourselves and ask, are my hands clean?  Have I sinned against my friend, neighbor, or God? What reward are we giving up?

Looking further into this reward, just in this passage, we find peace and protection, strength and victory!

Oh Lord You are my Rock. Forgive me and help me to be blameless before You.  Amen.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Why Work Hard?

I have been trying to memorize Psalm 18. It's only 50 verses... (only??) and each time I read through it I find little nuggets to help me through out my day. This is a psalm of victory and praise. Of realizing who God is and who I am. Today my study led me down a different path.

I feel I work hard.  Of course I always wonder could I have worked better? What more could I have done? Then I start to get all prideful and tell myself that I don't need to work like I do. Especially when the wife tells me that I am a work-a-holic

and I feel like a lazy wanna be couch potato.

I'm so grateful that whether I am struggling or not, God has already provided answers and help for me in his word.

Ecclesiastes 9:10 says -- Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might; for there is no work or device or knowledge or wisdom in the grave where you are going.

WOW! Simple and true.  We are all going to die, unless rapture happens first. I'm not one for pulling scripture out of context. When we read vs 9 we find that our work is our portion from God. (You can read it and draw your own conclusions.) So how does this tie in with Psalm 18? 

In Psalm 18:2 David gives a few word pictures of who God is to him (and us). My rock, my fortress, my deliverer, my God, my strength in whom I trust, my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. So if God is all that, say ONLY all that, then why wouldn't we work to the best of our ability? If He is going to do that for us... So why not give all we can for His honor? Working hard and receiving the blessing of that is a principal that applies whether you believe in God or not. It's a spiritual law that has been put in place and God will not deny it. No, working with all your might will not get you into heaven, that's not the way. What it will do is meant and promises for this life.  It is important to know who God is, to us individually. So Charles Stanley asks (and I echo) who is God to you?  When ever I am asked this question I come to the same conclusion. He is a mighty warrior, dressed for battle, victorious and undefeated.

Yesterday in church I was asked to define My Redemer.  He is the one who looked past the mess and garbage that I laid for myself, pulled me out of the distruction I created and willing walked into, saw something more that what I had become, and put value into my life.

Gave me a work to do and support to get it done. From turning to sorcery to try and find some control in my life, some way to defeat death... from huddling under stairs with a baby and girlfriend to try and stay dry, to being able to work and earn my way, from home and hopeless to a 3 bedroom house and so much to live for... No I have not arrived, but I can see where God has fought for me, even when I was fighting against Him.  It feels good to be on the winning team. Winning is fun!  That doesn't mean there isn't struggle or adversity, these things only make winning sweeter...

So, who is God to you? Are you really working with all your might?

Thursday, January 5, 2012

First Friday

Ok I know today is only Thursday but....

Tomorrow is the first Friday of the year and I don't know about you, but I feel like I haven't had much of a chance to breath. Between end of year production, 4th quarter at a retail box, and kids home for vacation... I start to feel...

Unfortunately I still have much to do. There are tests to take, bills to pay, meetings to go to... and what I want to do is...

You may catch me playing chess...

... or playing pool. I'm not because I'm behind the 8-ball...

I'm just trying to relax. Grab a cue and pour a coke or a pepsi...


and thank GOD it's Friday!