Pathway in the Sea

Ever see a butterfly flutter by? John 3:7-8

Psalm 77:19

Thy way is in the sea, and thy path in the great waters, and thy footsteps are not known.

"The best way to show that a stick is crooked is not to argue about it or to spend time denouncing it, but to lay a straight stick along side it."

-D. L. Moody

Thursday, May 30, 2013

You ain't seen nothin' yet...

Through the Bible Daily Devotions - Thy word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path. Psalm 119:105

You ain't seen nothing yet.


May 29

John 1:48,50-51 (NIV) 48"How do you know me?" Nathanael asked. Jesus answered, "I saw you while you were still under the fig tree before Philip called you."
50Jesus said, "You believe because I told you I saw you under the fig tree. You shall see greater things than that." 51He then added, "I tell you the truth, youshall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man."

The Apostle John gives us a description of the other apostles' first encounters with Jesus. He describes how Philip invited Nathanael to "come and see". Philip was already using Jesus' words. Nathanael had a hard time believing the Messiah could come from Nazareth.
When he approached Jesus, Jesus said he was an Israelite in whom nothing false could be found. When Nathanael asked Jesus how he knew that, Jesus told him that He had seen him under the fig tree before Philip came to him. It seems that this was some kind of sign to Nathanael, because he immediately declared Jesus as the Son of God. The Holy Spirit must have revealed something to Jesus of a spiritual encounter under that fig tree. We would call it "a word of knowledge", but since Jesus is one with the Spirit, it would be more than that. Jesus can use the term "I saw you".
We sometimes wonder if God does see us in the secret place when we pour out our hearts to him. Perhaps Nathanael was asking God to give him a sign that his prayers were heard. We'll have to wait until heaven to find out. What we can know of a certainty is, Jesus sees us here and can let us know that He does.
Jesus then told Nathanael that seeing Him there was nothing compared to what Nathanael would see in the future. He was going to see the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man. That is a reference to Jacob's ladder. Jesus was saying that He is the ladder. The angels, messengers of God, go and come through Him. He is the connection between heaven and earth. The revelation of God and His work in the world comes through Jesus.
Consider: The answers you are searching for come via Jesus.

He saves the best for last.

May 30                                                                                                         Evening

John 2:9-11 (NIV) 9and the master of the banquet tasted the water that had been turned into wine. He did not realize where it had come from, though the servants who had drawn the water knew. Then he called the bridegroom aside 10and said, "Everyone brings out the choice wine first and then the cheaper wine after the guests have had too much to drink; but you have saved the best till now.11This, the first of his miraculous signs, Jesus performed at Cana in Galilee. He thus revealed his glory, and his disciples put their faith in him.

Some of John the Baptist's disciples were following Jesus. Sometime between the wilderness temptation and the first Passover of Jesus' ministry, Jesus and those disciples went up to a wedding. Cana is very close to Nazareth. A wedding is a weeklong party in the Jewish tradition of that day. The groom must have been a friend or relative of Jesus' physical family. We can see that Jesus was concerned about these social events during His ministry.
Mary, Jesus' mother, asked Jesus to deal with the problem of lack of wine. If the host ran out of wine before the week of celebration was up, it would be a shameful thing. At first Jesus seems to suggest that He will not do anything, at least anything miraculous, to help. He said His time had not yet come. Then He asks for six stone water jars that hold 20 to 30 gallons each to be filled with water. What changed His mind? I think we can safely assume the Spirit of God instructed Him to go ahead and act, giving Him specific instructions.
When the master of the banquet tasted the water that was turned to wine, he was surprised that the best wine was served last. When Jesus makes something, it is the best. The Spirit of God chose this to be the first miracle of Jesus' ministry. The disciples placed their faith in him when they saw this transformation of physical matter, but it may be saying much more to us. The Apostle Paul referred to men as clay pots with a treasure inside. We are a vessel for the Holy Spirit. Wine is often used as a symbol of the Spirit. John the Baptist had preached that the Lamb of God had come to baptize people with the Spirit of God. The bulk of our physical being is actually water. This first sign signified the great work Jesus had come to begin, the transformation of mankind into vessels filled with His Spirit. He would make that possible through His death, resurrection and ascension.
Meditation: Be filled with the Spirit. God has saved the best for last.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

A Debtor

Our Daily Bread Radio is hosted by Les Lamborn
As a young man, Robert Robinson (1735–1790) enjoyed getting into trouble with his friends, so the stories go. At age 17, though, he heard a sermon by George Whitefield from Matthew 3:7, and realized his need for salvation in Christ. The Lord changed Robinson’s life, and he became a preacher. He also wrote several hymns, including his best-known “Come, Thou Fount of Every Blessing.”
Lately I’ve been pondering God’s amazing grace toward us and the last stanza of that hymn: “O to grace how great a debtor daily I’m constrained to be!” The hymn brings to mind the apostle Paul’s words: “The love of Christ compels [or constrains] us . . . that those who live should live no longer for themselves, but for Him who died for them and rose again” (2 Cor. 5:14-15).
We can’t earn God’s love and grace. But because He has lavished it on us, how can we help but love Him in return by living for Him! I’m not exactly sure what that looks like, but it must include drawing near to Him, listening to His Word, serving Him, and obeying Him out of gratitude and love.
As debtors, we are called to live each day for Jesus who gave Himself for us.
Come, Thou Fount of every blessing,
Tune my heart to sing Thy grace;
Streams of mercy, never ceasing,
Call for songs of loudest praise. —Robinson
Those who know God’s grace show God’s grace.

Classics: Streams in the Desert
"Spring up, O well; sing ye unto it" (Num. 21:17).
This was a strange song and a strange well. They had been traveling over the desert's barren sands, no water was in sight and they were famishing with thirst. Then God spake to Moses and said:
"Gather the people together, and I will give them water," and this is how it came.
They gathered in circles on the sands. They took their staves and dug deep down into the burning earthand as they dug, they sang,
"Spring up, O well, sing ye unto it," and lo, there came a gurgling sound, a rush of water and a flowing stream which filled the well and ran along the ground.
When they dug this well in the desert, they touched the stream that was running beneath, and reached the flowing tides that had long been out of sight.
How beautiful the picture given, telling us of the river of blessing that flows all through our lives, and we have only to reach by faith and praise to find our wants supplied in the most barren desert.
How did they reach the waters of this well? It was by praise. They sang upon the sand their song of faith, while with their staff of promise they dug the well.
Our praise will still open fountains in the desert, when murmuring will only bring us judgment, and even prayer may fail to reach the fountains of blessing.
There is nothing that pleases the Lord so much as praise. There is no test of faith so true as the grace of thanksgiving. Are you praising God enough? Are you thanking Him for your actual blessings that are more than can be numbered, and are you daring to praise Him even for those trials which are but blessings in disguise? Have you learned to praise Him in advance for the things that have not yet come? --Selected
"Thou waitest for deliverance!
O soul, thou waitest long!
Believe that now deliverance
Doth wait for thee in song!
"Sigh not until deliverance
Thy fettered feet doth free:
With songs of glad deliverance
God now doth compass thee."
Spurgeon's Morning by Morning
May 26

"Cast thy burden upon the Lord, and He shall sustain thee." --Psalm 55:22

Care, even though exercised upon legitimate objects, if carried to excess, has in it the nature of sin. The precept to avoid anxious care is earnestly inculcated by our Saviour, again and again; it is reiterated by the apostles; and it is one which cannot be neglected without involving transgression: for the very essence of anxious care is the imagining that we are wiser than God, and the thrusting ourselves into His place to do for Him that which He has undertaken to do for us. We attempt to think of that which we fancy He will forget; we labour to take upon ourselves our weary burden, as if He were unable or unwilling to take it for us. Now this disobedience to His plain precept, this unbelief in His Word, this presumption in intruding upon His province, is all sinful. Yet more than this, anxious care often leads to acts of sin. He who cannot calmly leave his affairs in God's hand, but will carry his own burden, is very likely to be tempted to use wrong means to help himself. This sin leads to a forsaking of God as our counsellor, and resorting instead to human wisdom. This is going to the "broken cistern" instead of to the "fountain;" a sin which was laid against Israel of old. Anxiety makes us doubt God's lovingkindness, and thus our love to Him grows cold; we feel mistrust, and thus grieve the Spirit of God, so that our prayers become hindered, our consistent example marred, and our life one of self-seeking. Thus want of confidence in God leads us to wander far from Him; but if through simple faith in His promise, we cast each burden as it comes upon Him, and are "careful for nothing" because He undertakes to care for us, it will keep us close to Him, and strengthen us against much temptation. "Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on Thee, because he trusteth in Thee."