GETTING THE MOST FROM GOD'S WORD:

"Do NOT labor for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to everlasting LIFE..." - The Gospel of John 6:27 (NKJV)
A systematic and daily reading of the Word of God is important in maintaining a strong Christian life. Establish a daily quiet time with God and His Word. Pray that the Holy Spirit will help you understand what you read. By following our daily Bible reading schedule through this blog, you will be able to read the Bible through in a year. Please note that you may utilize the ‘BIBLE READER’ app that is installed at the bottom of this webpage to assist you in reading the specified scripture portion for today.

To get the MOST from God's Word, please do the following intentionally:
1. REQUEST God to connect with you as you read the word of God with FOCUS and OPENNESS to see what God wants to speak with you.
2. READ the selected sections of Scripture slowly as you mark the words and phrases that intrigue you, even reading them the second time to get a better understanding.
3. REFLECT on what God is communicating to you; stopping long enough to let the seed of God's Word take root in your heart.
4. RESPOND to the passage speaking directly to God about what is in your heart, and then look out for ways to live out what you find - individually, and to others within your church and elsewhere.

As you read and meditate, ask yourself the following three questions:
a) What is God speaking to me through this passage?
b) Is there a command, a promise or a warning for me?
c) Is there an example for me to follow?

Please POST your comments below if there is a thought or message that the Lord has spoken to you through the passage that you are reading and meditating today. Please make sure that your post is aligned to the scripture passage mentioned at the header. All comments should pertain to the relevant scripture portions only, and should be aimed to glorify God (the true author of 'The Bible') & edify everyone who visits this blog site daily - both young and old. May God bless you abundantly for encouraging others through your comments!

Let's PRAY...
LORD, give me the desire to take a little time out of my busy schedule today as I read and meditate on Your Word. Give me this day MY DAILY BREAD. Speak to me clearly & lead me today as my Good Shepherd. Help me to be a blessing to others who interact with me as I attempt to be a living witness of Your Word today. In Your Name I pray, AMEN.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

August 24 Bible Reading: Lamentations Chapters 1-3

HOPING in GOD’s MERCIES, COMPASSION & FAITHFULNESS: Through the Lord's mercies we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness. "The Lord is my portion," says my soul, "therefore I hope in Him!" The Lord is good to those who wait for Him, to the soul who seeks Him. It is good that one should hope and wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord. (Lam 3:22-26)

The above verses embody the central thesis of the book of Lamentations. In the midst of the lingering depression over his misery, prophet Jeremiah gets his eyes off himself and onto the Lord. Hope is revived when he remembers that the Lord’s mercies and compassions are new every morning and that His faithfulness is great (vv. 21–24). The lesson that he had learned in the school of affliction: it is good to wait quietly for the Lord’s deliverance (vv. 25–26).

This is one of the poignant expressions of the grace of God found anywhere in the Bible. All would be consumed were it not for God’s mercies. The word “mercies” is a translation of the Hebrew word “hesed” meaning “lovingkindness” (Jer. 2:2). This word captures the spirit of the term “grace” in the New Testament (Eph. 2:8). Each morning His mercies are fresh, verifying God’s great faithfulness to us (v. 23). Every day presents us with a new opportunity to discover and experience more of God’s love. God remains “full of grace and truth” in every situation (see Ex. 34:6, 7; John 1:14).

These verses mark the turning point in Jeremiah’s experience of grief and prayer. As he looked at himself (vv. 1–18), he saw an aged man on a winding path in the dark, being pursued by lions. The more he considered his feelings, the more hopeless he felt. Then he looked away from himself and by faith looked to the Lord. He has hope now (v. 21) because of God’s mercies, compassions, and faithfulness. Focusing on our problems can make us discouraged, but focusing on God’s never-ending faithfulness gives us hope!

God will not forsake His children today. His mercy and grace have been extended to those who are in Christ Jesus (Rom. 8:1), and nothing can separate us from His love (8:31–39). As a result, we can have hope (5:1–5; 1 Pet. 1:3–5), even in the midst of the gloomiest circumstances (2 Cor. 1:8–11).

"Your mercy, O Lord, is in the heavens; Your faithfulness reaches to the clouds. Your righteousness is like the great mountains; Your judgments are a great deep; O Lord, You preserve man and beast. How precious is Your lovingkindness, O God! Therefore the children of men put their trust under the shadow of Your wings." (Psalms 36:5-7)

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