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.

Saturday, June 27, 2015

PRAYING for SELF-DISCIPLINE in our DAILY LIFE

PRAYING for SELF-DISCIPLINE in our DAILY LIFE

June 27 Bible Reading: Psalms Chapters 137-142

"Let my prayer be set before You as incense, the lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice. Set a guard, O Lord, over my mouth; keep watch over the door of my lips. Do not incline my heart to any evil thing, to practice wicked works with men who work iniquity; and do not let me eat of their delicacies. Let the righteous strike me; it shall be a kindness. And let him rebuke me; it shall be as excellent oil; let my head not refuse it." (Psalms 141:2-5)

The background of David to write this psalm may be due to sore temptation in his life, both internal (vv. 3, 4) and external (vv. 9, 10). The fact that almost every verse contains the vocabulary of petition adds to the urgency of David’s request. David prays for God’s attention (vv. 1, 2), for restraint (vv. 3–7), and for refuge (vv. 8–10). Above all, David prays that God would enable him to maintain self-discipline in his daily living!

David starts by requesting that his prayer might be as pleasing and fragrant to God as incense, and that the lifting up of his hands in supplication might have the same impact with the Lord as the evening sacrifice. We should note that the burning of incense is symbolic of the offering up of prayers (Ex. 30:7, 8; Luke 1:10; Rev. 5:8; 8:3, 4).

But then David moves from generalities to specifics. His first concern is that he might be kept from partnership with ungodly men in word or in deed. He asks for a guard to be stationed at his mouth to prevent the escape of any wrong word, to keep the door of his lips from speech that would not be honoring to the Lord. Then he asks for a heart that is free from collaborating with the corrupt men in their wicked practices. He does not want to partake of their advantages, however attractive or tempting they might seem (See Psalms 1:1).

However, David understands that suggestions, criticisms and rebukes of godly friends are welcomed by sensible people. So he prays that some righteous friend of his might reprove him sharply if he yielded to the temptation to practice wicked works with men that work iniquity. Such a reproof would even be a kindness to him. A wise person accepts correction; the person who refuses to listen will finally be destroyed (Prov. 29:1; Heb. 12:1–13). Being accountable to fellow believers is an important check and balance against moral lapse!

We often cannot see faults in ourselves as clearly as we can see them in others. Only those who really care for us are willing to point out our defects and “blind spots.” It is a kindness on their part and should be welcomed like medicine by us. When evil is near us, and evil people tempt us, it is easy to say the wrong thing and it is our hearts that need protection (Matt. 12:34–37). In this regard correction from our well-wishers who are wise can be described as, “faithful are the wounds of a friend” (Prov. 27:6); they may hurt, but like oil they also heal.

"My son, do not despise the chastening of the Lord, nor be discouraged when you are rebuked by Him; for whom the Lord loves He chastens, and scourges every son whom He receives." (Heb 12:5-6)

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