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Fear of man will prove to be a snare, but whoever trusts in the Lord is kept safe.

-Proverbs 29:25

Power Hungry -  

This devotional was written by Leslie Snyder

 

This is the word of the LORD to Zerubbabel: Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit, says the LORD Almighty. —Zechariah 4:6

 

Amazing feats of strength are all around. In fact, I’m intrigued by stories of superhuman strength, like small women who save the lives of children by lifting cars off of them, or kids who can break boards or even concrete with their hands, or watching body builders tear through thick phone books with their bare hands.

 

Some use the explanation of overactive endorphins or adrenaline to account for these achievements, while others point to clarity of mind, focus, and deep concentration. Whatever the cause, personal strength certainly draws the attention of many people.

 

In the above passage, the prophet and priest Zechariah describes the message from God to Zerubbabel who is leading Israel in the completion of the rebuilding of the altar and the temple in Jerusalem. The task before Zerubbabel is undoubtedly daunting. But notice the words of the angel in Zechariah 4:9, “The hands of Zerubbabel have laid the foundation of this temple; his hands will also complete it. Then you will know that the LORD Almighty has sent me to you.” Now this is the kind of power that should turn anybody’s head!

 

The Spirit’s power is endless. It is unquenchable, infinite, immeasurable, and amazingly available. The problem is that most of us, even those who claim to be Christ followers, attempt to do the work God has called us to do in our own strength!! A former Chaplain of the United States Senate stated, “If the Holy Spirit were removed from the early church, 95% of what was happening would have ceased. If the Holy Spirit were removed from the church today, 95% of things would remain unchanged.”

 

We must learn to let go of our need to manage God and His activities. His Spirit, His strength, and His power unleashed will accomplish His will with or without us. We just get invited to go along for the ride. Sensational victories are the norm for the Kingdom, not because of anything we do, but because of the power of God.

 

GOING DEEPER:

1. Do you have a need to “manage” God and His work in your life?

 

2. Evaluate the things you do “for” God. Are you working out of your own strength or relying on His?

 

FURTHER READING:

Ephesians 6:10; 1 Corinthians 1:25; Psalm 18:2

This devotional originally appeared in “HomeWord with Jim Burns” on Crosswalk’s Family Devotional section. For more information about HomeWord with Jim Burns devotionals, please visit us online.

More of HomeWord with Jim Burns: http://www.crosswalk.com/devotionals/homeword/

BLESSED PROMISES  -  

In Lessons on Living

Then Abram went up from Egypt, he and his wife and all that he had, and Lot with him, to the South. Abram was very rich in livestock, in silver, and in gold. - Genesis 13:1-2

William Penn, the founder of the commonwealth of Pennsylvania, was well liked by the Indians. Once they told him he could have as much of their land as he could encompass on foot in a single day. So early the next morning, he started out and walked until late that night. When he finally went to claim his land, the Indians were greatly surprised, for they didn't think he would take them seriously. But they kept their promise and gave him a large tract of land. Today that area is Philadelphia.

God also made a promise to Abraham: "I will bless you" (Gen. 12:2-3). Even though Abraham made mistakes and sometimes failed to trust the Lord fully, God never went back on His promise. He blessed Abraham materially until he was "very rich in livestock, in silver, and in gold." More important, He blessed Abraham spiritually. God declared in Genesis 22:17-18, "In blessing I will bless you, and in multiplying I will multiply your descendants as the stars of the heaven and as the sand which is on the seashore; and your descendants shall possess the gate of their enemies. In your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, because you have obeyed My voice." Through Abraham's descendants came the Messiah, who brought the blessing of salvation to all nations.

God continues to bless today just as He has promised. Though we quickly forget them, God's blessings are all around us. He allows some of us to be the stewards of His material blessings, but He gives all of us the opportunity to enjoy His spiritual blessings. His salvation, forgiveness and lovingkindness are promised blessings that God will never forget.

Rejoice today in your blessings. Rest confidently in the truth that what God has promised, He will never take away.

Enjoy the riches that are yours because you are His.

Dr. Woodrow Kroll served as President and Senior Bible Teacher at Back to the Bible from 1990-2013. Author of more than 50 books, Dr. Kroll's passion is to increase Bible literacy in America by engaging people in the Bible and connecting them with the Author. His clear, incisive teaching of the Word keeps him in demand as a speaker all over the world. - See more at: http://www.backtothebible.org/authors/woodrow-kroll#sthash.7Yrcap6W.dpuf

More of Dr. Woodrow Kroll: http://www.backtothebible.org/devotions

WHOM DO YOU TRUST? 

BY CHARLES HADDON SPURGEON

In Morning and Evening

"Now on whom dost thou trust?" -Isaiah 36:5

Reader, this is an important question. Listen to the Christian's answer, and see if it is yours. "On whom dost thou trust?" "I trust," says the Christian, "in a triune God. I trust the Father, believing that He has chosen me from before the foundations of the world; I trust Him to provide for me in providence, to teach me, to guide me, to correct me if need be, and to bring me home to His own house where the many mansions are. I trust the Son. Very God of very God is He--the man Christ Jesus. I trust in Him to take away all my sins by His own sacrifice, and to adorn me with His perfect righteousness. I trust Him to be my Intercessor, to present my prayers and desires before His Father's throne, and I trust Him to be my Advocate at the last great day, to plead my cause, and to justify me. I trust Him for what He is, for what He has done, and for what He has promised yet to do. And I trust the Holy Spirit--He has begun to save me from my inbred sins; I trust Him to drive them all out; I trust Him to curb my temper, to subdue my will, to enlighten my understanding, to check my passions, to comfort my despondency, to help my weakness, to illuminate my darkness; I trust Him to dwell in me as my life, to reign in me as my King, to sanctify me wholly, spirit, soul, and body, and then to take me up to dwell with the saints in light for ever."

Oh, blessed trust! To trust Him whose power will never be exhausted, whose love will never wane, whose kindness will never change, whose faithfulness will never fail, whose wisdom will never be nonplussed, and whose perfect goodness can never know a diminution! Happy art thou, reader, if this trust is thine! So trusting, thou shalt enjoy sweet peace now, and glory hereafter, and the foundation of thy trust shall never be removed.

Devotions.org, a division of Back to Bible has a daily source of devotions to keep you in touch with God and His word, written by some of today's top authors and Bible teachers. Browse the variety of resources completely on their website. 

More of Devotions.Org: http://www.backtothebible.org/devotions

DON'T RUSH -  

BY MRS. CHARLES COWMAN

In Streams in the Desert

"Who is among you that feareth Jehovah, that obeyeth the voice of his servant? He that walketh in darkness and hath no light, let him trust in the name of Jehovah and rely upon his God" (Isa. 50:10, RV). 

What shall the believer do in times of darkness--the darkness of perplexity and confusion, not of heart but of mind? Times of darkness come to the faithful and believing disciple who is walking obediently in the will of God; seasons when he does not know what to do, nor which way to turn. The sky is overcast with clouds. The clear light of Heaven does not shine upon his pathway. One feels as if he were groping his way in darkness. 

Beloved, is this you? What shall the believer do in times of darkness? Listen! "Let him trust in the name of the Lord, and rely upon his God." 

The first thing to do is do nothing. This is hard for poor human nature to do. In the West there is a saying that runs thus, "When you're rattled, don't rush"; in other words, "When you don't know what to do, don't do it." 

When you run into a spiritual fog bank, don't tear ahead; slow down the machinery of your life. If necessary, anchor your bark or let it swing at its moorings. We are to simply trust God. While we trust, God can work. Worry prevents Him from doing anything for us. If our minds are distracted and our hearts distressed; if the darkness that overshadows us strikes terror to us; if we run hither and yon in a vain effort to find some way of escape out of a dark place of trial, where Divine providence has put us, the Lord can do nothing for us. 

The peace of God must quiet our minds and rest our hearts. We must put our hand in the hand of God like a little child, and let Him lead us out into the bright sunshine of His love. 

He knows the way out of the woods. Let us climb up into His arms, and trust Him to take us out by the shortest and surest road.--Dr. Pardington 


Remember we are never without a pilot when we know not how to steer. 

"Hold on, my heart, in thy believing-- 

The steadfast only wins the crown; 

He who, when stormy winds are heaving, 

Parts with its anchor, shall go down; 

But he who Jesus holds through all, 

Shall stand, though Heaven and earth should fall. 


"Hold out! There comes an end to sorrow; 

Hope from the dust shall conquering rise; 

The storm foretells a summer's morrow; 

The Cross points on to Paradise; 

The Father reigneth! cease all doubt; 

Hold on, my heart, hold on, hold out."

The public domain version of this classic devotional is the unabridged edition of Streams in the Desert.

Devotions.org, a division of Back to Bible has a daily source of devotions to keep you in touch with God and His word, written by some of today's top authors and Bible teachers. Browse the variety of resources completely on their website. 

More of Devotions.Org: http://www.backtothebible.org/devotions

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