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Monday, June 29, 2009

Donegal Creek Willows
Willows along Donegal Creek
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"Rich Reward For The Faithful"

"Help, Lord, for the godly man ceases to be. For the faithful disappear from among the sons of men" (Psalm 12:1). "So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded.  You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what He has promised" (Hebrews 10:35,36).

David expresses himself in our daily text in a way that we might also in our own day.  His cry for help is directed to the Lord.  His observation is that the "godly man ceases to be".  David grew up during a time of great moral and spiritual apostasy.  Certainly Saul's reign was not marked by spiritual revival or consistent obedience to God. It transitioned from the period of the Judges, which is summed up with the phrase "Each man did what was right in his own eyes."  However there was a remnant of God's faithful followers during this period such as the prophet Samuel.

Thank God for those who remain faithful followers of Jesus Christ in our own day. Faithful ministers who preach God's Word in an uncompromising manner, dedicated lay persons who live out their faith before an oft-scorning world, married couples who take their marital covenant seriously, parents who raise their children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord and church communities that continue to "forsake not the assembling together."

Today's verse is a great truth for all readers to memorize. We all deal with different temptations and issues in life as we seek to remain faithful to Christ.  The believers addressed in Hebrews were facing persecution and were tempted to go back to their old way of life.  Perhaps part of the temptation was that in doing so their persecutions might ease. There are many believers today under similar circumstances.

But going back to the old way of life remains a temptation in varying degrees for all believers, although for different reasons.  For many readers it may be the busyness of life, affluence, the persistent barrage of godless, secular teaching and other issues we confront daily that lull us into complacency or pull us back into the world. 

One that I have noticed is the heavy load that people bear as they overcome the consequences of many years of disobedience to God.  It may be tobacco, drug or alcohol use, sexual immorality or indebtedness due to wasteful spending.  Turning to Christ does not immediately negate the long-term consequences of these past sins.  Though some receive miraculous deliverance, there are those who will endure weaknesses and temptations that require diligent prayer and daily overcoming.

The enemy of our soul may persistently murmur, "What's the use?" and tempt us to just throw away our confidence and simply give up.  Sadly, I know some who have done just that.  A major theme throughout Hebrews is, "Let us hold firmly to the faith we profess."  The word translated "hold firmly" is in the present active and conveys the ongoing need to actively participate in this "holding on" to our faith.

But note the great promise in the daily text.  I have been blessed by it often and committed it to memory: "So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded."  Any earthly rewards pale in comparison to the eternal rewards our heavenly Father bestows on the faithful believer.   May the Lord's present and future promises strengthen your faith today and fill you with anticipation for the future when you will be "richly rewarded."

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Daily Prayer: Father, You lead us through the valleys and mountain top experiences of everyday life.  Your ways are far superior to the path we might choose when guided by our own limited wisdom.  We're so grateful for the strength and encouragement we receive from our brothers and sisters who bear our burdens and share in our joys.  When considering the choice of walking faithfully with you or turning to our old way of life, we join with Simon Peter who weighed the options and declared, "Lord, to whom shall we go?  You have the words of eternal life.  We believe and know that You are the Holy One of God." (John 6:68,69).

Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources
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"Today I Choose"
 Video  Brian Doerksen

Call 2 Fall logoRegardless of what country you may live in we sure need a revival! On Sunday morning July 5 our church will join many others in participating in "Call2Fall", a nationwide prayer meeting. We encourage others to look into this, especially pastors here in America. Essentially this is a definite time during worship on Sunday, July 5th when we get on our knees before the Lord in repentant prayer, pleading with God to reshape our lives, renew our land, and send times of refreshing (See 2 Chronicles 7:14; Acts 3:19).

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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. and the King James Version.

Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and I make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and to prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."

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