VIDEO The Longer I Serve Him

Dec 6, 2012

Music video by Bill & Gloria Gaither performing The Longer I Serve Him, featuring Ben Speer and Danny Gaither. [Live]

God’s Compass – What To Renounce – If You Have a Pulse . . .

God’s Compass

Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path. Psalm 119:105

During World War II, small compasses saved the lives of 27 sailors 300 miles off the coast of North Carolina. Waldemar Semenov, a retired merchant seaman, was serving as a junior engineer aboard the SS Alcoa Guide when a German submarine surfaced and opened fire on the ship. The ship was hit, caught fire, and began to sink. Semenov and his crew lowered compass-equipped lifeboats into the water and used the compasses to guide them toward the shipping lanes closer to shore. After three days, the men were rescued.

The psalmist reminded God’s people that His Word was a trustworthy “compass.” He likened it to a lamp. In that day, the flickering light cast by an olive oil lamp was only bright enough to show a traveler his next step. To the psalmist, God’s Word was such a lamp, providing enough light to illuminate the path for those pursuing God (Ps. 119:105). When the psalmist was wandering in the dark on a chaotic path of life, he believed that God, through the guidance of His Word, would provide direction.

When we lose our bearings in life, we can trust our God who gives His trustworthy Word as our compass, using it to lead us into deeper fellowship with Him.

Heavenly Father, it is difficult to navigate life. I drift sometimes, but I will trust in You. Lead me and guide me by the faithfulness and reliability of Your Word.

God has given us His Word to help us know and follow Him.

By Marvin Williams
What To Renounce
woods sunshine

We have renounced the hidden things of shame… —2 Corinthians 4:2

Have you “renounced the hidden things of shame” in your life— the things that your sense of honor or pride will not allow to come into the light? You can easily hide them. Is there a thought in your heart about anyone that you would not like to be brought into the light? Then renounce it as soon as it comes to mind— renounce everything in its entirety until there is no hidden dishonesty or craftiness about you at all. Envy, jealousy, and strife don’t necessarily arise from your old nature of sin, but from the flesh which was used for these kinds of things in the past (see Romans 6:19 and 1 Peter 4:1-3). You must maintain continual watchfulness so that nothing arises in your life that would cause you shame.

“…not walking in craftiness…” (2 Corinthians 4:2). This means not resorting to something simply to make your own point. This is a terrible trap. You know that God will allow you to work in only one way— the way of truth. Then be careful never to catch people through the other way— the way of deceit. If you act deceitfully, God’s blight and ruin will be upon you. What may be craftiness for you, may not be for others— God has called you to a higher standard. Never dull your sense of being your utmost for His highest— your best for His glory. For you, doing certain things would mean craftiness coming into your life for a purpose other than what is the highest and best, and it would dull the motivation that God has given you. Many people have turned back because they are afraid to look at things from God’s perspective. The greatest spiritual crisis comes when a person has to move a little farther on in his faith than the beliefs he has already accepted.

Is He going to help Himself to your life, or are you taken up with your conception of what you are going to do? God is responsible for our lives, and the one great keynote is reckless reliance upon Him. Approved Unto God, 10 R

Oswald Chambers

If You Have a Pulse . . .

So [Gideon] said to Him, “O my Lord, how can I save Israel? Indeed my clan is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least in my father’s house.” Judges 6:15

God used a poor English cobbler to translate the Scriptures into many Indian dialects. He used an arrogant assistant to the President of the United States to reach prison inmates for Christ. He used an uneducated fisherman to be the chief of Jesus’ disciples. He used the captain of a slave-trade ship to write the world’s best-known Christian hymn. He used a Hebrew murderer to deliver the descendants of Jacob from slavery in Egypt.

And God also used a young farmer named Gideon to deliver Israel from the gathering armies of Midian. When he was called, Gideon’s response was predictable: “Me, Lord? I am from the weakest clan in the tribe of Manasseh, and I am the least of all the people in my father’s household!” God never ceases to confound humanity. Even when He chooses a smart person from the top tier of society (like Charles Colson or the apostle Paul), He breaks them and humbles them to make them “usable.” We would probably have never chosen such a person to begin with.

Throw out all your ideas about who God can use. If you belong to Him and have a pulse, God can use you for His glory!

God uses men who are weak and feeble enough to lean on Him. J. Hudson Taylor

Respond To Conflict

Proverbs 15:18

When conflict occurs, people often look for someone to criticize. Though it happened long ago, I still remember being severely chastised during a meeting at an organization. Because of God’s enabling, I was able to react in a godly manner. Turning to the Lord in prayer is always the best way to respond in a crisis.

As we do, we can ask for Him to provide. . .

Spiritual discernment. God knows and understands perfectly the source of the problem, and He can enable us to comprehend it, too. Perhaps there has been a communication breakdown, a feeling of jealousy on the other person’s part, or a mistake on ours. With the Spirit’s assistance, we will gain insight.

A quiet spirit. Our human nature will want to react quickly so that we can defend ourselves or stand up for what we think is right. Before we act, we must deliberately focus our attention on God and experience the inner peace that He promises (John 14:27).

Wisdom. The Lord told His disciples that the Holy Spirit would give them wise words to say when they faced hostile authorities (Luke 12:11-12). He will do the same for us. If tempted to speak hastily, we should ask the Spirit to put a seal on our lips until God reveals it’s time to respond and gives us the words to say (Ps. 141:3).

We do not have to react to criticism with anger and self-protectiveness, as the world does. God has called us to represent Him in every situation the same way Christ did—through dependence on the heavenly Father. Next time someone speaks critically to you, how will you respond?

For Me to Intercede

“Wherefore, he is able to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them.” (Hebrews 7:25)

The second verse of the moving old hymn “Arise, My Soul, Arise” speaks of Christ’s intercessory work on our behalf and the basis on which His prayers are accepted.

He ever lives above; For me to intercede,
His all-redeeming love, His precious blood to plead.
His blood atoned for all our race (repeat)
And sprinkles now the throne of grace.

Christ is our intercessor, pleading with the Father to save us from our sins, for which the penalty has been paid by His “sacrifice . . . for this he did once, when he offered up himself” (Hebrews 7:27). It is “the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot” (1 Peter 1:19) which pleads for our forgiveness. He does this for us because He “loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood” (Revelation 1:5) as we come to God in repentant faith.

Because Jesus was Himself a fully righteous man, He could die on another’s behalf; because He was fully God the Son, His death was sufficient to pay the penalty for the whole human race: “Jesus Christ the righteous; And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world” (1 John 2:1-2). “Thou art worthy . . . for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation” (Revelation 5:9).

Only in this way can we come “to the general assembly and the church of the firstborn, which are written in heaven, and to God, the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect, And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling” (Hebrews 12:23-24). JDM

To the Individual Only

For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad. —2 Corinthians 5:10

No church is any better or worse than the individual Christians who compose it….

One consequence of our failure to see clearly the true nature of revival is that we wait for years for some supernatural manifestation that never comes, overlooking completely our own individual place in the desired awakening. Whatever God may do for a church must be done in the single unit, the one certain man or woman. Some things can happen only to the isolated, single person; they cannot be experienced en masse. Statistics show, for instance, that 100 babies are born in a certain city on a given day. Yet the birth of each baby is for that baby a unique experience, an isolated, personal thing….

Three thousand persons were converted at Pentecost, but each one met his sin and his Savior alone. The spiritual birth, like the natural one, is for each one a unique, separate experience shared in by no one. And so with that up rush of resurgent life we call revival. It can come to the individual only.

Lord, make me sensitive this morning to my “own individual place in the desired awakening.” Whatever work needs to be done to this “isolated, single person”—do it today, I pray. Amen.

Prayer of Faith Lays Hold of God’s Omnipotence

… In everything by prayer and supplication… let your requests be made known unto God. Philippians 4:6

To “accept the universe” does not mean that we are to accept evil conditions as inevitable and make no effort to improve them. So to teach would be to cancel the plain teachings of the Scriptures on that point.

Where a situation is contrary to the will of God, and there are clear promises concerning it in the Scriptures, it is our privilege and obligation to pray and labor to bring about a change. Should we become ill, for instance, we should not
surrender to the illness as being inevitable and do nothing about it. Rather, we should accept it provisionally as the will of God for the time and seek His will about recovering our health.

While the prayer of faith enables us to lay hold of the omnipotence of God and bring about many wonderful changes here below, there are some things that not even prayer can change. These lie outside the field of prayer and must be accepted with thanksgiving as the wise will of God for us.

We should, for instance, accept the wisdom of God in nature. In the course of a lifetime there may be a thousand things we could wish had been different, but the word ‘wish’ is not in the Christian’s vocabulary. The very word connotes a fretful rebellion against the ways of God in His universe.

Again, accept yourself. Apart from sin, which you have forsaken, there is nothing about yourself of which you need to be ashamed. Cease to vex yourself about anything over which you have no control. Keep your heart with all diligence and God will look after the universe!

Humility and Worship

Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God. 1 PETER 5:6

Real worship is, among other things, a feeling about the Lord God! It is in our hearts, and we must be willing to express it in an appropriate manner.

We can express our worship to God in many ways. But if we love the Lord and are led by His Holy Spirit, our worship will always bring a delighted sense of admiring awe and a sincere humility on our part.

There must be humility in the heart of the person who would worship God in spirit and in truth. So, the proud and lofty man or woman cannot worship God anymore acceptably than can the proud devil himself!

Unfortunately, many of us are strictly “Santa Claus Christians.” We need to go on from an elementary kind of love, in which we think of God as putting up a kind of Christmas tree and putting all our gifts underneath. We need, rather, to be delighted in the presence of utter, infinite excellence!

Such worship will have the ingredient of fascination, the personality captured by the Presence of God!

Father, I pray for many of our churches today that think of worship as a mode of entertainment. O God, help these churches to stop focusing on their own pleasures and lead them to delight in You alone.