VIDEO In Every Situation Peace and Presence of God

Now may the Lord of peace himself give you His peace at all times and in every situation. The Lord be with you all. 2 Thessalonians 3:16, NLT

To many people around the world, 2020 was a difficult year, even a tragic one, and we have no idea what the new year will bring. But we know this without a doubt: In every situation we face, our Savior is with us.

As the new year dawns, paraphrase 2 Thessalonians 3:16 as an earnest prayer: Lord, may You, the Lord of peace, give me Your peace at all times and in every situation.

Remember what Paul said in Philippians 4:6-7: Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus (NIV). He added in verse 12: I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation (NIV).

Every situation means every day, every hour, every circumstances, every location, every need, every fear, every joy, every opportunity, every step. He is more present than you know, and more powerful than you can possibly conceive. Our times are in His hands.

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“The Peace and Presence of God” | 2 Thessalonians 3.16-18

Fireworks of Life

He himself is our peace. Ephesians 2:14

On New Year’s Eve, when high-powered fireworks detonate across cities and towns worldwide, the noise is loud on purpose. By their nature, say manufacturers, flashy fireworks are meant to split the atmosphere, literally. “Repeater” blasts can sound the loudest, especially when exploded near the ground.

Troubles, too, can boom through our hearts, minds, and homes. The “fireworks” of life—family struggles, relationship problems, work challenges, financial strain, even church division—can feel like explosions, rattling our emotional atmosphere.

Yet we know the One who lifts us over this uproar. Christ Himself “is our peace,” Paul wrote in Ephesians 2:14. When we abide in His presence, His peace is greater than any disruption, quieting the noise of any worry, hurt, or disunity.

This would have been powerful assurance to Jews and gentiles alike. They’d once lived “without hope and without God in the world” (v. 12). Now they faced threats of persecution and internal threats of division. But in Christ, they’d been brought near to Him, and consequently to each other, by His blood. “For he himself is our peace, who has made the two groups one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility” (v. 14).

As we start a new year, with threats of unrest and division ever rumbling on the horizon, let’s turn from life’s noisy trials to seek our ever-present Peace. He quiets the booms, healing us.

By:  Patricia Raybon

Reflect & Pray

What “fireworks” are shattering the calm in your life? When you give them to God in prayer, what peace do you feel?

Comforting God, when life’s fireworks shock and unsettle me, draw me to Your peace.

God’s Voice Heard Today

2 Timothy 3:14-17

Have you ever considered that our omnipotent God can communicate with us in any way He pleases? We may expect Him to speak audibly or send an angelic messenger, but He won’t be limited to a certain method of communication. Instead, it is our responsibility to learn how to perceive His voice.

Today our Father speaks to us primarily through His Word. The Scriptures are fully reliable because the Holy Spirit of God literally breathed His truth upon the minds of men, who recorded it precisely (2 Timothy 3:16).

So often when trouble strikes, we turn to some friend or counselor. That is good, for the Father does speak through godly men and women. But the first place we should turn is to His Word.

God has given us this Book so that we might know Him. If you pick up the Bible only when you have a question or emergency, then you won’t have a true picture of who the Lord is or what He wants you to know. Scripture is a treasure trove of God’s thoughts. Spend time there every day—starting today—to discover new truths and insights.

Loaded with Blessings

“Blessed be the LORD, who daily loadeth us with benefits, even the God of our salvation. Selah.” (Psalm 68:19)

As we come to this year’s end, it is salutary for the believer to think back over the days of the year and to meditate upon his blessings. He may, indeed, have experienced defeats and losses, disappointments and injuries in great number. If he is honest with himself, however, the Christian will always have to acknowledge that his blessings far outweigh his burdens. God “loadeth us with benefits,” and is even working in and through all the trials and hurtful things together for our good (Romans 8:28).

In our text verse, the words “with benefits” have been supplied by the translators. Some might, therefore, conclude that the verse could mean that God is daily loading us with burdens instead of benefits. The context, however, assures us that the emphasis is really on His blessings. For that matter, even a burden can become a blessing if we take it as a gift from God for our spiritual benefit.

Therefore: “Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits” (Psalm 103:2). “In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you” (1 Thessalonians 5:18). “Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say, Rejoice” (Philippians 4:4).

He has given us “life, and breath, and all things” (Acts 17:25). Far more importantly, He is “the God of our salvation.” Whatever else we have, or don’t have, in this life, we have the great gift of eternal life, through faith in Christ and His finished work of redemption. We have it every day of the year and are daily ready to meet the Lord, whenever He calls. Each day we have the indwelling presence of His Spirit, the illuminating guidance of His Word, the daily provision of all real needs, and the assurance of His love. He has surely loaded us with benefits! HMM

Be Prepared for Whatever

LORD, thou hast been our dwelling place in all generations. Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever thou hadst formed the earth and the world, even from everlasting to everlasting, thou art God. —Psalm 90:1-2

Yet I do not advise that we end the year on a somber note. The march, not the dirge, has ever been the music of Christianity. If we are good students in the school of life, there is much that the years have to teach us. But the Christian is more than a student, more than a philosopher. He is a believer, and the object of his faith makes the difference, the mighty difference.

Of all persons the Christian should be best prepared for whatever the New Year brings. He has dealt with life at its source. In Christ he has disposed of a thousand enemies that other men must face alone and unprepared. He can face his tomorrow cheerful and unafraid because yesterday he turned his feet into the ways of peace and today he lives in God. The man who has made God his dwelling place will always have a safe habitation.   WOS148

Thank You, Father, for all You’ve taught me this past year. Thank You for the stretching experiences. Thank You for Tozer’s wise counsel. Thank You for the privilege of serving You. Thank You for Your love and grace. Amen.

If Worse Comes to Worst

The mercy of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting upon them that fear him, and his righteousness unto children’s children. —Psalm 103:17

If the world’s foundations crumble we still have God, and in Him we have everything essential to our ransomed beings forever.

We [also] have Christ, who…died for us and who now sits at the right hand of the Majesty in the heavens making constant and effective intercession for us.

We have the Scriptures, which can never fail.

We have the Holy Spirit to interpret the Scriptures to our inner lives and to be to us a Guide and a Comforter.

We have prayer and we have faith, and these bring heaven to earth and turn even bitter Marah sweet.

And if worse comes to worst here below, we have our Father’s house and our Father’s welcome. TWP025

“The man of the year” cannot impress those men and women who are making their plans for that long eternity when days and years have passed away and time is no more. NCA009


Romans 13:11-12

I do promise—my God helping:

Firstly, that I will rise every morning sufficiently early (say 20 minutes before seven o’clock) to wash, dress and have a few minutes, not less than five, in private prayer.

Secondly, that I will as much as possible avoid all that babbling and idle talking in which I have lately so sinfully indulged.

Thirdly, that I will endeavor in my conduct and deportment before the world and my fellow servants especially to conduct myself as a humble, meek and zealous follower of the bleeding Lamb, and by serious conversation and warning endeavor to lead them to think of their immortal souls.

Fourthly, that I will read not less than four chapters in God’s Word every day.

Fifthly, that I will strive to live closer to God, and to seek after holiness of heart, and leave providential events with God;

Sixthly, that I will read this over every day or at least twice a week.

God help me, enable me to cultivate a spirit of self-denial and to yield myself a prisoner of love to the Redeemer of the world.

Amen and Amen.

I feel my own weakness and without God’s help I shall not keep these resolutions a day. The Lord have mercy upon my guilty soul. I claim the blood; yes, oh, yes, Jesus died for me.

To live, to love, to serve my Savior Lord and meet His glad “Well done” at the finish of the fight is my highest ambition.

William Booth, They Said It

VIDEO Marvelous Light – Longing for the Word

But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light. 1 Peter 2:9

Ken Block, a professional rally driver, recently fitted his off-road truck with 300,000 lumens of blinding light to make sure he can see everything on the darkest night and in the darkest places. How much is 300,000 lumens of light? The average car headlight pumps out 700 lumens on low, and 1,200 with the high beams turned on. A light in a football stadium uses 70,000 or more lumens. So if Ken Block heads down your street, you might want to don your sunglasses or pull your curtains.

Nothing, however, compares to the light Jesus sheds on our pathway as we proceed through life. The Lord Jesus radiates light, as we see on the Mount of Transfiguration in the Gospels and in the descriptions of Him in the book of Revelation. Our eyes aren’t yet fitted for that brightness, but it filters through His grace onto our paths to brighten and illumine each step we take.

Walk in the radiance of His presence today.

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Longing for the Word (1 Peter 2:1–9)

True Success

The Lord, the Lord, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness. Exodus 34:6

My interview guest politely answered my questions. I had a feeling, though, that something lurked beneath our interaction. A passing comment brought it out.

“You’re inspiring thousands of people,” I said.

“Not thousands,” he muttered. “Millions.

And as if pitying my ignorance, my guest reminded me of his credentials—the titles he held, the things he’d achieved, the magazine he’d graced. It was an awkward moment.

Ever since that experience, I’ve been struck by how God revealed Himself to Moses on Mount Sinai (Exodus 34:5–7). Here was the Creator of the cosmos and Judge of humanity, but God didn’t use His titles. Here was the Maker of 100 billion galaxies, but such feats weren’t mentioned either. Instead, God introduced Himself as “the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness” (v. 6). When He reveals who He is, it isn’t His titles or achievements He lists but the kind of character He has.

As people made in God’s image and called to follow His example (Genesis 1:27; Ephesians 5:1–2), this is profound. Achievement is good, titles have their place, but what really matters is how compassionate, gracious, and loving we’re becoming.

Like that interview guest, we too can base our significance on our achievements. I have. But our God has modeled what true success is—not what’s written on our business cards and resumés, but how we’re becoming like Him.

By:  Sheridan Voysey

Reflect & Pray

How tempted are you to base your significance on your accomplishments? What aspect of God’s character needs to grow in you today?

Spirit of God, make me compassionate, gracious, patient, and loving!

A Vision for Believers

Matthew 28:16-20

Most people have aspirations for their life. Some aim for a high-powered career or financial success, while others dream about having close friendships or impacting the world. But no matter what our personal goals may be, we should be aware of the vision God has cast for all of His children. Known as the Great Commission, Matthew 28:19-20 charges us to “go and make disciples of all the nations.”

But what does it mean to “make disciples”? Some Christians think this refers to adding new church members. However, God is not interested in numbers or external appearances; He’s concerned about genuine heart change. So He commissions His followers to lead others, first to saving faith in Jesus Christ and then to baptism as a public declaration of their trust in the Savior.

Once Jesus shared these objectives, the disciples spent the rest of their days fulfilling them. In fact, almost every one gave his life to accomplish them.

This command has not changed. Our Father still expects us to share the good news of the gospel, to teach people how to be followers of Jesus Christ, and to baptize those who are saved.

Are you living with God’s purpose as your guide? Ask Him for the courage to share His message of hope and love.