2018-07-09 Back in the Saddle!

Good Morning!

I’m back at work! We had ten days of family from all over the country. It was so nice to see everyone again. We had a very good time. Now, to catch up on everything including my devotional. My bible plan got a little behind, but I’m catching back up quickly. In a way, it’s nice to be able to go through bigger chunks, especially with Old Testament stories. On the other hand, I miss something big when I don’t have God’s words covering me each day.

First order of business. Mike’s father, Jim, passed away. Mike wrote me a nice email sharing his thoughts. I plan to share that with you later this week. However, for the next couple days, I would like to write for a woman that I will call Maureen. She has been having a great deal of trouble in life. I’ve never met her but have only heard about her through someone very special to me. So, we’re praying for Maureen, and I ask that you join me. I won’t give you any details at this point. You and I know that God will know what is needed.

I feel led to share the gospel for Maureen through my writing. I don’t know whether or not she is a believer. Whether she is or is not, I hope to share the gospel. I’m reminded of the woman at the well whose life was forever and dramatically changed during one brief encounter with Jesus. I think I might use a format of speaking directly to Maureen, to personalize it. So here it goes.

Maureen, I have become aware of you and your situation. I know very little detail other than life is very difficult for you right now. Actually, I was asked to recommend a bible verse that could be used to help encourage you. I thought it would be a good idea to do more than that. You see, a bible verse is good, but there is so much more to God than a meme here and there. In fact, one of the writers of the bible named John wrote a book about Jesus, and at the very end said this:

John 21:25 Now there are also many other things that Jesus did. Were every one of them to be written, I suppose that the whole world itself could not contain the books that would be written.

You see, John had come to know this man, Jesus, as God himself, and so have I. Lots of other people have, too. I’ll explain why over the next couple of days. For this very moment, let me assure you that Jesus is real. I know this because of the miracle he has done for me. I have also found the bible to be completely true. I also know many, many people who say the same thing. I’m telling you this so that you may feel that you have reason to trust Jesus.

I will tell you, Maureen, that almost everything I knew about Jesus was wrong. I was raised in church. Honestly, the main focus of most churches is to be “good” people, yet all too often we see that our actions don’t match our words. That’s because we are trying to do everything on our own. That’s not what Jesus is looking for. He’s looking for people to put their trust in him. You can do all the “church” stuff you want, and it won’t do you any good. The day you say, “I trust you,” is the day that everything will change.

Here’s the hard truth. “Church” doesn’t please God. A heart that trusts him does. And, it’s all or nothing, Maureen. We can’t fool God. He’s not interested in part-time followers. We may think he is, but he isn’t. Only when we are all-in do his promises apply.

I don’t mean to frighten you with this. I only tell you because it is true. When you trust in Jesus, things change. For the better. Much better. Let me give you one little tidbit, a promise of God’s that believers can rely on.

Matthew 6:31-34 Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and all his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.

It’s worth it, Maureen.

Father, please let these words sink in for Maureen. Give her peace so that she may trust you and seek you with all her heart, mind, and soul. Show her your kindness, generosity, and forgiveness. Above all, show her your abounding love. Amen.

Copyright © 2018 Scott Powers

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