“Then Jacob was left alone, and a man wrestled with him until daybreak (Genesis 32:24).”
Fear can cause people to do desperate things. It can move people to risk everything in order to find relief. Also, in the face of fear people have been known to find incredible strength to overcome impossible odds.
In the verse we are drawing our thought from today, Jacob is about to meet his brother Esau for the first time since stealing his blessing and swindling him out of his birthright. Jacob, we learn in verse 7, “was greatly afraid and distressed.” He realized that Esau could still be determined to kill him. He knew that his behavior in the past had led to animosity between him and Esau. Jacob was afraid!
It was while in this condition that Jacob found himself alone wrestling with God. Jacob was so afraid that he held on to the angel of the Lord with all his might. In fact even when the angel instructed Jacob to let him go, he declared “I will not let you go unless you bless.” Jacob was desperate. His fear made him risk everything to get the blessing of the Lord he so desperately desired. Perhaps that is where you find yourself today. Maybe you are holding on to God out of desperation. You may be wrestling with the Lord out of fear. If so here is good news, God specializes in blessing those who desperately hold on to Him. Yes, God is awesomely able to release blessings to the desperate!
Today, as you reignite your fervor for the Lord I encourage you to hold on until He blesses you. If you find yourself wrestling with God, let your desperation prompt you to keep wrestling until He releases the blessing you are desperate to receive. Hold on until the Lord blesses you!
Live reignited as you wrestle with God until He blesses you!
“God is faithful, through whom you were called into fellowship with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord (1 Corinthians 1:9).”
Why should we reignite our fervor for God?
What motivates us to rekindle our zeal to live on fire for the Lord?
One simple and yet powerful truth: God is faithful!
The Apostle Paul understood this truth and reminded the saints in Corinth of it. He wanted them to live godly lives. He was concerned for them because of what the members of Chloe’s household shared with him. As he began his letter to them he makes the statement “God is faith, through whom you were called into fellowship with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.” That is such a wonderfully powerful truth! God is faithful! Believe it! Receive it! Live reignited because of it!
This is a truth that is so valuable to every believer. God is faithful. In the Amplified Version verse nine is translated “God is faithful (reliable, trustworthy, and therefore ever true to His promise, and He can be depended on)…” Wow! Our Heavenly Father is reliable, trustworthy, ever true to His promise and can be depended on. That is something worth celebrating. That is a truth which should move us to praise! We can rejoice in knowing that the one who called us into fellowship with His Son Jesus is faithful. He will not change His mind regarding our position in Him through faith in Jesus Christ. God is faithful!
Today as you reignite your fervor for God, remember He is faithful and celebrate it. Let the truth of God’s faithfulness cause you to rejoice and praise Him. Reflect on what it means that God is ever true to His promise and exalt His name.
Live reignited celebrating God’s faithfulness!
“And Jesus stopped and called them, and said, ‘What do you want me to do for you?’” Matthew 20:32
My daughter knows just the right way to call my name to get my attention. She has learned how to get the things she desires from me. It is all in the way she acts and asks. When she says my name in that way, my response is a gentle “Yes, what can I do for you?” Some would say she has me wrapped around her finger, I would conclude I am acting as a loving father who knows how to give good gifts to his daughter.
Jesus, on his way to Jerusalem to face death, is stopped on the road by two blind men. They are calling his name loudly. The crowd attempts to silence them. They refuse and get even louder. They now have Jesus’ attention. He stops and asks a question “What do you want me to do for you?” That was a loaded question. Here are these men blind and in need. They have so much they could ask the Lord to do. Their response was simple and direct, “Lord, we want our eyes to be opened.” They wanted to see! How did Jesus respond? He compassionately touched their eyes and restored their sight!
I submit that today the Lord is still asking the question “What do you want me to do for you?” He is still interested in meeting our needs. His compassion continues to run toward those who are crying out to him. He is waiting for you and me to cry out to him for that which we need. And here’s the good news, when we do, his response is still “What do you want me to do for you?”
Rekindle your fervor for the Lord today and cry out to him to meet your needs. He will compassionately do it! The Lord is still asking! God ahead cry out.
“Behold, My Servant, whom I uphold; My chosen one in whom My soul delights. I have put My Spirit upon Him; He will bring forth justice for the nations (Isaiah 42:1).”
The cry for justice is being heard loudly throughout the civilized world these days. We want justice against ISIS. We want justice against racial oppression. We want justice against unfair employment practices. Some even want justice for individuals who want to engage in same sex relationships.
Perhaps you are one who is crying out for justice in the earth at this time. If so I have good news for you, God has appointed one who “…will bring forth justice for the nations.” Who is that you may ask? His name is Jesus the Servant of God.
In Isaiah 42:1 we read God’s promise concerning His Servant. The very first thing God says His Servant will do is “bring forth justice for the nations.” That lets us know that it is only through Jesus that justice can come forth. It does no good to look for man to execute justice; for how can one who is unjust bring forth what is just?
God promises us that justice will come forth in the earth. How will it come forth? It will be brought forth through the Servant of the Lord, Jesus. Jesus is the Servant who brings forth justice for the nations. He is the one who executes God’s judgment. Jesus is the Servant who brings about what is right and fitting. Only Jesus can bring forth justice. Only He is just and the one who justifies!
Rejoice today in knowing the Servant who brings forth justice.
“Even now, behold, my witness is in heaven, and my advocate is on high (Job 16:19).”
What do you say when there is no answer for the situation you are in? How do you explain the unexplainable? Where do you find words to give meaning to that which makes no sense?
That is the position in which Job found himself. His suffering was senseless. The situation he was in had no explanation. His friends were convinced that he brought it all on himself and yet he knew he had not. Job finally in desperation declared “God has done this to me!” I am sure Job certainly felt that God had to be behind all that he was enduring. He perhaps even felt that God without reason was punishing him. I cannot tell you the number of people I have met that share Job’s sentiments. They conclude that their pain must be placed at the feet of God. They are convinced that God is behind their hurt. Perhaps that’s you today.
Job is distraught and fatigued. He is weary and worn out. Yet notice his words in verse 19 “Even now, behold, my witness is in heaven, and my advocate is on high.” Job in all is agony still knew who his advocate was. He still realized that God was on his side. Job teaches us how to remain faithful to God even when it feels as if He has abandoned us. He shows us how to still know our advocate even when it seems our advocate has stopped defending us.
As you read the words of this devotional you may feel as though God has completely abandoned you. It may seem that the One in whom you hoped has given up on you. I encourage you even in that situation to still know your advocate. Still remember who has your back. Rekindle your faith in God even though it seems He has stopped helping you.
Live reignited today and still know your advocate is the Lord Almighty!
“I will tell your name to my brethren; in the midst of the assembly I will praise you.” Psalm 22:22
Pain is inevitable in life! Yet as believers if we are not careful we will develop the false belief that because we are in relationship with God we are not supposed to suffer. This false belief often causes people to turn their backs on God when pain and suffering come their way. They say things like “If God loves me why did He let this terrible thing happen to me.” Today as you reignite your flame for the Lord I encourage you to find your praise in your pain.
Psalm 22 was written by David while he was in pain. The title in the New American Standard Bible is A Cry of Anguish and a Song of Praise. It is very fitting that this would be one of the Messianic psalms used to describe the passion and suffering of the Christ. Some of the words were spoken by the Lord himself while on the cross. This psalm reminds the saint to maintain your praise in your pain.
Notice for twenty-one verses the psalmist cries out in anguish. Then in verse 22 he begins to praise God. It is almost as if a light switch was suddenly turned on and the psalmist saw the Lord in the midst of his pain. He declares in verse 22 “I will tell of your name to my brethren; in the midst of the assembly I will praise you.” The psalmist found his praise in his pain. He remembered the Lord as his deliverer, redeemer, and provider and he began praising Him even while in pain.
Today, I encourage you to find your praise even in the midst of your pain. Remember that the Lord is your deliverer, redeemer, and provider so that you find your praise in your pain. Praise Him while you are going through the pain.
Rekindle your passion for the Lord and declare “I will release my praise in my pain!” Live reignited!
“But the angel of the Lord said to him, “Why do you ask my name, seeing it is wonderful? (Judges 13:18)””
Many have attempted to ascertain the name of the Lord. Jacob asked and the Lord refused to answer; blessing him instead. Moses asked and the Lord declared tell them “I am” has sent you. Manoah asked and the Lord replied “…Why do you ask my name, seeing it is wonderful?” The Israelites have known from of old that the name of the Lord is too wonderful to describe; choosing to use letters and symbols to express His name instead of writing it out or saying it. We today would do well to learn just how wonderful the name of the Lord is.
In judges thirteen Manoah and his wife have been promised a son. They were instructed to dedicate him to the Lord all the days of his life as a Nazirite. They were told that the child would deliver Israel from the hands of the Philistines. Manoah, when in the presence of the angel of the Lord, did not know how to act. He first attempted to offer Him a meal (verse 15). He then asked Him “What is your name” (verse 17). The Lord’s response is simply amazing. He says to Manoah, “My name is too wonderful to express.” What a powerful and awe inspiring declaration. The name of our God is too wonderful for words. There are literally no words in the entire human vocabulary to express the name of the Lord.
Let that sink in for a moment. The God who loved us so much that He sacrificed His son for our sins has a name too wonderful for words. Today reflect on just how awesome our God is. He is so awesome that His name cannot be put into words. He is so awesome that the human language with all its millions of words cannot articulate the complete essence of Him.
As you rekindle your fervor for God today reflect on and remember that His name is wonderful!
Live reignited today!