November 19 Don’t Lose Heart
Ezek 25:3-7 (Ammon) Because you cheered when my Temple was defiled, and you laughed at Judah as she went into exile, I will allow nomads to overrun you… Then you will know that I am the Lord. Because you clapped and danced and cheered with glee at the destruction of my people, I will raise my fist of judgment against you. I will cut you off from being a nation and destroy you completely. Then you will know that I am the Lord.
Ezek 25:11 (Moab) In the same way, I will bring judgment down on the Moabites. Then they will know that I am the Lord.
Ezek 25:17 (Philistia) I will execute terrible vengeance against them to punish them for what they have done. And when I have inflicted my revenge, they will know that I am the Lord.
Ezek 26:1-6 (Tyre) Tyre has rejoiced over the fall of Jerusalem… therefore I, the Sovereign Lord have declared, I am your enemy. I will bring many nations against you, like the waves of the sea crashing against your shore… I will destroy the walls of Tyre and tear down its towers. I will scrape away its soil and make it a bare rock! Then they will know that I am the Lord.
Psalm 118:6-9 The Lord is for me, so I will have no fear. What can mere people do to me? Yes, the Lord is for me; he will help me. I will look in triumph at those who hate me. It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in people. It is better to take refuge in the Lord than trust in princes.
Ps 118:14-18 The Lord is my strength and my song, he has given me victory… The strong right arm of the Lord is raised in triumph. The strong right arm of the Lord has done glorious things…
I will not die, instead, I will live to tell what the Lord has done. The Lord has punished me severely, but he did not let me die…
Ps 118:19-29 Open for me the gates… these gates lead to the presence of the Lord and the godly enter there. I thank you for answering my prayer and giving me victory! …This is the day the Lord has made. We will rejoice and be glad in it. …Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good! His faithful love endures forever.
Gal 6:5 We are each responsible for our own conduct.
Gal 6:8-9 Those who live only to satisfy their own sinful nature will harvest decay and death from that sinful nature. But those who live to please the Spirit will harvest everlasting life from the Spirit. So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up.
How often do we get tired of doing the right thing? Have you had any of these thoughts recently? Life is just not fair. What so and so did was just wrong, Why did God allow that, when I am trying so hard to please him? I shouldn’t have to put up with… etc.
As I read these passages this morning, I am reminded that, in all these things, no matter what is happening, “God is for me!” (Ps 118:6) And it’s better to take refuge in the Lord than than to trust in people… whether that’s the people around us in the world, in our work, or our church and family. The Lord is our strength to handle whatever He brings into our life today! (Ps 118:14)
I love what David said in Ps 118:19-20. NLT says, “Open for me the gates… these gates lead to the presence of the Lord.” What are the gates David was talking about? I am sure he was picturing the temple, and worshipping God in the temple in the presence of God. But for us, it’s when we choose to take refuge in Him (Ps 118:8-9), when we choose to believe that God is for us. When we find Him to be our strength (Ps 118:14), the gates of His presence will be open, and we will find ourselves abiding in Him. (John 15:4-5)
In everything God is doing, He is working to reveal Himself to us, and through us. That’s what I was reminded of in Ezek 25-26. Although God allowed these nations to inflict pain on his people in judgement for their sin, ultimately they will be brought to the place where even they will know that the Lord is God!
We are responsible for our own conduct (Gal 6:5). It’s God’s desire to make Himself known through our lives. But, He doesn’t force it. He allows us to choose whether we will be His instrument to display His glory and His character. God WILL display His glory, and the ALL THE WORLD will come to know that the LORD is God! It’s up to us whether God we are His instruments to do so, or whether He will do that in-spite of us, like He did with Israel.
Be encouraged today. “Those who live to please the Spirit will harvest everlasting life from the Spirit. So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up.” (Gal 6:8-9)
- Believe and stand on the truth that God is for you!
- Choose to live to please the Spirit, and not your flesh.
- Don’t grow weary in doing what is good, remember the greater reward… Christ likeness and heaven with Him.
- May God use you to reveal Him, and His character, to those who witness your life.