I am the Lord: that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven images (Isa 42:8)~ We pledge allegiance to flags, bow and salute leaders and royalty, and commemorate statues to respect the people and memories of those long past. We idolize people and live our lives in the examples of athletics, entertainers, popular culture and lifestyle. What used to be an extreme has now become the norm – dedicating allegiances to each other and our ideologies – giving honor and glory to every sort and version of created being and objects in all walks of life.
But where is the glory to Him that spoke life into existence with His very words? How do we honor the One that by His desire set the balance of the universe? Where is the allegiance to the God of eternity with an uncompromising promise? Let us give to God those honors, praises and glories which are absolutely and solely His; taking heed that we do not serve the creature more than the Creator.
TO GOD BE THE GLORY
He that is unrighteous, let him do unrighteousness still: and he that is filthy, let him be made filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him do righteousness still: and he that is holy, let him be made holy still (Rev 22:11)~~ All is confirmed by an open and general invitation to all mankind, to come and partake “freely” of the promises and of the privileges of the gospel. The Spirit, by the sacred word, and by convictions and influence in the sinner’s conscience, says, Come to Christ for salvation; and the bride, or the whole church, on earth and in heaven, says, Come and share our happiness. Let whosoever will, come and take of the water of life freely. May every one who hears or reads these words, desire at once to accept the gracious invitation. God does not and will not force us to be reconciled with Him, but places within us enough grace that we would desire to do so in our own hearts, that we would personally and individually know, in our own recognizance the glory and joy of His eternal salvation. By our own free choice, we will be what we will be. His Word, though, spoken on all of our souls, will have effect upon men; in one way or another…in full acceptance or rejection. The filthy and unjust will be more so, but it will confirm, strengthen, and further sanctify those who are upright with God. Never let us think that a dead or disobedient faith will save us, for the First and the Last has declared that those alone are blessed who do His commandments. It’s clear that while we have a choice, there is an eternal consequence for that choice. We MUST choose…There is no middle place or condition. And if it is evil in your eyes to serve the Lord, choose this day whom you will serve …But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord (Josh 24:15)!
For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope (Jer 29:11). In nothing be anxious; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall guard your hearts and your thoughts in Christ Jesus (Phil 4:6-7)~~ of all of the things we needlessly worry about, one of the biggest things people worry over is what another person thinks about them. Life is too short for any of us to spend time worrying about what other people think and say about us. I would almost bet that if they had anything positive going on in their own lives they wouldn’t have time to sit around and discuss yours anyway. It always seems that the unhappiest people in the world are those individuals who get too caught up in the opinions of people who don’t even matter, instead of how they truly feel about themselves. These people are so worried about how they look in someone else’s eyes…and misery loves company so they pass their judgement on you..and if you worry you’ll be the same old way. Therefore, why worry yourself about other people’s opinion of you?? It’s not important. Know what God thinks of you and what HE plans for you and let that be the basis for your opinion of yourself! When you are focused on how much God loves you, regardless of anyone else, you will realize that the only person who can pull you down… is you! So never give others the power to control your self-worth, your happiness, and your positivity! God loves you, regardless of what someone else thinks of you. You don’t NEED everyone’s approval, you’ve got God’s approval! As Romans 8:31 says: If God is for us, who is against us?
“But God . . .” The revelation of the Almighty that makes the course of adversity stop in its tracks as He intervenes and speaks His will:
- “You meant evil against me; but God meant it for good, in order to bring it about as it is this day, to save many people alive” ~~ (Gen. 50:20).
- “Their beauty shall be consumed in the grave . . . . But God will redeem my soul from the power of the grave” ~~ (Ps. 49:14-15).
- “My flesh and my heart fail; but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever” ~~ (Ps. 73:26).
- “For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” ~~ (Rom. 5:7-8).
- “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard . . . the things which God has prepared for those who love Him. But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit” ~~ (1 Cor. 2:9-10).
Whenever you feel discouraged, whenever you feel the weight of the world coming down on you, whenever you feel like you’re going deeper and deeper into a hole – look to the hills from whence your help comes (Ps 121:1) and remember the times when a “but God” intervention happened and be reassured of God’s love and involvement in the lives of those who love Him.
Creator of the universe
Who reigns in awesome majesty:
How can it be that You’re involved
With such a one as me?
Who am I that you are mindful of me? (Ps 8:4)
And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart (Gal 6:9); And so, after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise (Heb 6:15)~~ And so I plead with you this day as we go ahead: remain committed to nonviolence. Our aim must never be to defeat or humiliate the other man, but to win his friendship and understanding. We must come to see that the end we seek is a society at peace with itself, a society that can live with its conscience. And that will be a day not of the white man, not of the black man. That will be the day of man as man. I know you are asking today, “How long will it take?” Somebody’s asking, “How long will prejudice blind the visions of men, darken their understanding, and drive bright-eyed wisdom from her sacred throne?” Somebody’s asking, “When will wounded justice, lying prostrate on the streets be lifted from this dust of shame to reign supreme among the children of men?” Somebody’s asking, “When will the radiant star of hope be plunged against the nocturnal bosom of this lonely night, plucked from weary souls with chains of fear and the manacles of death? How long will justice be crucified, and truth bear it?” However difficult the moment, however frustrating the hour, it will not be long, because “truth crushed to earth will rise again. How long? Not long, because no lie can live forever. How long? Not long, because you shall reap what you sow. How long? Not long because the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice. (Martin Luther King, Jr.).
There is so much going on in life today that it makes us constantly wonder IF, much less when things will get better. One answer for SURE is when Jesus returns and these days are a sign that it’s any day now! But until then we must endure and persevere! May God’s Word encourage and remind us to hang in there; to continue doing the right things and trusting Him through the process. There is a great promise that He has for us and God has never failed or gone back on a promise. We are ensured that as we patiently endure what we go through, not losing heart, that our light affliction is for but a moment but in His promise, we are being setup for a far exceeding weight of eternal glory! Yes, this “stuff” is light in God’s eyes and we are best to remember that because if we trust in Him and leave it to Him, we have peace knowing that it’s nothing He can’t handle! It may take a while, it may seem to be lifelong, but all things work together for those who love the Lord and are called according to His purpose! Trust! Believe! While we wait it out, God is working it out! Amen! Even so, come, Lord Jesus! (Rev 22:20)
Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations (Jer 1:5)~ imagine this…better yet, KNOW this: YOU are part of God’s excellent plan. After God created the universe and populated it with life, He focused all His creative power on His final masterpiece. In an instant of time, He created man in His image so that you bear the likeness of God. Realize this! God embedded excellence into the core of your being. From the top of your head to the tip of you miraculous big toe, you are excellent through and through. God chose YOU for this life, gave you capacity for this assignment and created a table for you to receive these blessings! He has a plan for you life custom designed for just you, and that plan has excellence stamped all over it (Jer 29:11). You matter to Him that much! You are that important! You are fearfully and wonderfully made. A part of His wonderful works. Great is His mercy towards you, precious and vast are His thoughts toward you! No matter what instabilities we may face, even in our own minds, we must remember and draw our faith in that God is never at a point of uncertainty. Our strongest urges to pray are His callings to us, not that we throw ourselves at His feet and chant some long drawn out poetic thesis, but that we come to Him with our requests and that we also lay open our Spirit that we may hear from Him. Friend, know who you are IN HIM. May His plan for you happen today. He not only loves you that much, but He WANTS to show YOU…HIM!
Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof (Prov 18:21)~ If you want to know where your life is headed; what you will be like in the next few years, listen to what you’re saying now! Are you speaking frustration and failure or are you speaking faith and favor? Be mindful of the words you speak, not just of yourself but to others! When we experience certain words and mindsets long enough, we start to live them. If you believe you are loved and you speak accordingly, you will live as if you are. If you believe and speak as if you are an outcast; a black sheep; an undesirable, you will carry yourself accordingly. So be careful what you pronounce!! – Rejection, disrespect, disassociation, dissolution and depression, fear, drama, confusion, unrealistic expectations…this is what the devil wants. YOUR words form YOUR perception of life. No one gets to decide the words that come out of your mouth except for you. Therefore, your words have the power to set things in motion, good or bad for you. They are little seeds that you plant in life. When your words are filled with faith, hope and promise then you’ll enjoy the fruit of them. But if they’re filled with discouragement, fear and other negative attitudes you won’t enjoy your life. Make your confessions personal and real, and allow God’s strength and power to move; to change things for the better. Instead of saying what you’re not, say what you are: Start saying “I am”: “blessed; able; healed; smart; gifted. I am everything God has called me to be!” Knowing that YOU have the WORDS in you to make life what you want it to be, what do you have to say? Choose your words carefully!