‘God has something new for us’
God reminded me of this song today “The endless love of the Lord never ceases his mercies never come to an end”. Reminding me of Gods blessings that are new every morning (Lam 3:22-24 KJ) It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.
‘Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy.’ After creating the world, God Himself rested on the seventh day! Not only that. He has told us to keep one day in seven separate from others – to rest from normal work and worship Him. Does rest sound impossible? He made us and knows how we shall function best. Although it may be difficult give it a try and do what you can of Sunday’s ‘work’ on Saturday or Monday. God’s laws are given for our good. Remember to tell your children too that all God’s laws are for our good. (Deut. 11.19,20)
Memory is one of God’s most precious gifts. To lose it completely in an accident, not to know who you are, your name, family or life experiences must be extremely frightening. In Scripture, we’re often told to ‘remember’. In Deuteronomy 8 v.2. & 18 the Israelites were told to remember how God had led and provided for them as they escaped from Egypt and finally entered the Promised Land. ‘Don’t forget what I’ve said!’ ‘Remember…!’ Parents say to their children. God says the same to us: ‘Remember… I rescued you from Satan’s clutches’; ‘Remember …I provide for your needs;’ ‘Remember…I love you’; ’Remember… I am with you always’
‘Do this in memory of me.’ All through history Christians have remembered what Jesus said and did on the night before he died. As we eat a piece of bread and drink juice or wine we remember that Jesus gave his life for us – so that our sins can be forgiven. But he also said ‘When you come to eat this food together, if you remember your brother has something against you, first go and put things right with him. Then come and bring your gift to me‘. We need to remember and do that too.
This year has held many reminders of the 2nd World War – of Dunkirk, VE & VJ Days etc. When I was small our neighbours’ two sons were interned in Nazi concentration camps. The parents were distressed and, along with many others, went each week to pray at the parish church for their safe return. Thank God they did both come back and the parents were grateful – but they soon stopped going to church!
This year the country is honouring the memory of thousands who died or were injured defending Britain. But we seldom hear God thanked for preventing the dreaded invasion!
Let’s remember to thank Him for his mercy.
This is ‘Suffering Church Action & Awareness Week’ – a special opportunity to learn about & pray for Christians who are persecuted for their faith in Jesus. In some countries, Christians are deliberately excluded from food-aid or prevented from getting jobs. In others, they are violently attacked, kidnapped, imprisoned or killed because they refuse to deny Jesus. ‘Remember those in prison’ and those who are suffering for their faith in and love for God. (Heb. 13.3) If you want specific news to help you pray barnabasfund.org or http://www.opendoorsuk.org and several other organisations will be glad to send it.
Jesus said, “You are the light of the world. A city on top of a hill can’t be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a basket. Instead, they put it on top of a lampstand, and it shines on all who are in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before people, so they can see the good things you do and praise your Father who is in heaven” (Matthew 5:14-16)
Just as the bible reports that the people of that day did not welcome Jesus, the light of the world, we continue today to close the light out and prefer in our ignorance to live in darkness around some parts of our lives. We build walls and close doors to the light that would reveal God’s goodness and his purpose for our lives. Not only are we missing the transformative light that God wants to shine into our lives, but we fail to have enough light to help others find the way. Maybe it is time that we open our hearts and let the fullness of Jesus’ light shine into our dark places. Just as the moon reflects the light of the sun, we can reflect Jesus’ light into a dark world.
When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life." John 8,12
In many ways, our world is a dark place. It can leave us lost, confused, and unsure of the things around us. But just as our world resembles darkness at times, so do Jesus words resemble a little match struck in the darkness. The light may be small, and we still may stumble in the darkness, but if we let it, that tiny light can illuminate even the darkest corners of our world. So take a moment and ask yourself, do you have the light of Christ in your life?
In my opinion, there is ‘no better’ aroma to wake up to in the morning than the smell of freshly brewed coffee. For me, it’s the invitation to indulge in a ‘pick me up’ to help launch me into my day. In the same way, the scriptures invite us as we wake up each day, into the aroma of God’s Promises and Presence. So, if you had a bad day, week or season, the writer of Lamentations has a message for you.
"The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness
(Lamentations 3:22-23", ESV)
Just as I hold on to this mug of coffee enjoying the fresh aroma, why don’t you hold onto His Promises and Presence to give you the fresh start that you need today?