Look Upon the LORD

Monday September 6, 2021

Today’s Reading: Psalm 123

I lift my eyes to You, the One enthroned in heaven.

Psalm 123:1

Reflection: Like a servant’s eyes on his master’s hand, the psalmist’s eyes are fixed on the LORD of heaven and earth. He is the servant of His God, constantly seeking what the LORD may decree, what He may do in His holiness and glory. Every move of his God is significant, and the psalmist does not want to miss any of it. The psalmist’s eyes rest on the LORD also because he is waiting on Him. He is at God’s beck and call, ready to obey Him at a moment’s notice. His eyes are intent at seeing what the LORD may desire. There will be no delay should the LORD call him to move at His command.

The psalmist lifts his eyes to the LORD seeking His favor. He longs for His God to look upon Him and meet his concerns and needs. As a servant is completely dependent upon his master, the psalmist looks to the LORD in times of trouble. He knows that all provision and all safety come from God. As he endures the contempt of people around him, he fixes his eyes on the LORD even moreso. Only the LORD’s favor, he knows, can overwhelm the scorn of all that are against him.

As the psalmist fixes His eyes upon His Master, as he seeks Him wholeheartedly, as he waits for his LORD’s instruction under all circumstances, so must we also lift our eyes to God. The more dire the need, the more difficult the circumstance, the stronger the temptation to stray is cause to focus intensely upon Him. Don’t remove your gaze from the LORD! Keep your eyes fixed upon Him.

Prayer: Loving God, I kneel before You in Your sovereignty and holiness. I seek Your Presence and perfect Will. Thank You for securing the heavens and the earth by Your royal Kingship over all creation. Thank You for the ability to draw near to You by Your grace. Please, LORD, help me to remain focused on You. Help me to live guided by Your statutes and surrendered to Your authority. Teach me to rest in growing faith in You. I am in need of You every moment, LORD. I pray these things in Jesus’ Holy Name, AMEN.

Bible-in-a-Year Reading Plan (credit: Bible, studytools.com): 2 Timothy 3; Jeremiah 9-10; Psalm 123

Sunday Message: The Point of Praise

September 5, 2021

Today’s Reading: Acts 16:19-34

About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them.

Acts 16:25

Sermon Main Idea: Praising God in persecution points people to Jesus.

Text Notes:

  • Serving God leads to suffering for God. (v.19-24)
  • Suffering for God leads to praising God. (v.25)
  • Praising God, while suffering, points people to Jesus. (v.26-34)

Prayer: Gracious God, please help me to choose to praise You, especially in the midst of great difficulty in my faith walk. Turn my eyes to the Cross, that I may remember where my true hope lies and from where my help comes. In Jesus’ Name I pray, AMEN.

Bible-in-a-Year Reading Plan (credit: Bible, studytools.com): 2 Timothy 2; Jeremiah 7-8; Psalm 122

The LORD Our Help

Saturday September 4, 2021

Today’s Reading: Psalm 121

I raise my eyes toward the mountains. Where will my help come from?

Psalm 121:1

Reflection: Since the LORD is the Help of His people, there is no situation, no circumstance, no uncertainty where they might be fearful. One look to the majestic mountain range reminds them that their LORD is glorious to save. God’s people need not fear because the LORD neither slumbers nor sleeps. Since His power is limitless, He never grows weary. The Wellspring of Life never runs dry, therefore He never needs to be replenished. Instead, He possesses more than enough strength to sustain Himself and also the universe. He does not allow His Beloved to be left vulnerable for one moment, but remains fully present by their side. God’s people need not fear because the LORD is a sure Protector. He is the ultimate Shield of safety for those who seek His shelter. The sun in all its splendor is small before Him, and the moon a tiny twinkle of light. Moreover, since the LORD made them both, these heavenly bodies rise and set at His command. Nothing can threaten the safety of those He protects. God’s people are assured of daily safety. Their lives in eternity have also been secured by Him.

Since the LORD is our Help, we need not fear. What can people do that will overwhelm His utmost cared upon us? What can occur that threatens the well-being of those He loves? Do not rely on all that You see around You, or build Your own forts of safety. Instead, when all you see around you is grim, lift your eyes a bit higher and find Your true Help. Put your trust in the LORD, Who will surely protect You.

Prayer: LORD, You are my true Help and Rescue. You are my Salvation and my Strength. You are my Refuge, and Protector. I need not be afraid of anything because of the assurance that You are with me. Thank You for Your care upon me, for hearing my cries and answering according to Your Will. What would I do without You, my Help? I pray that You keep me remembering all that You have done for me. Help me to live confident in You in all situations. I pray these things to You in Jesus’ Name, AMEN.

Bible-in-a-Year Reading Plan (credit: Bible, studytools.com): 2 Timothy 1; Jeremiah 5-6; Psalm 121

The God of Truth and Peace

Friday September 3, 2021

Today’s Reading: Psalm 120

In my distress I called to the Lord, and He answered me:“Lord, deliver me from lying lips and a deceitful tongue.”

Psalm 120:1-2

Reflection: The LORD our God is a God of truth and peace. By His truth He establishes His Kingdom, and by His peace He reigns over His people. To live immersed in lies is to be lost in Meshech, a place far away from God’s Promised land. To live in a world dictated by lies feels like dwelling in the nomadic tents homes of Kedar – constantly changing location, never settling. Those who tell lies about others and to others are bent on destruction. They are at war with God and try to prey on His people. But the one who cries out to the Lord can always be assured that God will answer those lies with His truth. By His truth, God brings His people near to Him and grounds them with a firm foundation on which to build and settle.

It can be wearisome to live like the psalmist, surrounded by lies that the enemy has established in the world to destroy the Truth of God. Even for God’s fiercest followers, the battle against the lies of the world is brutal. But praise God that He answers the cries of His weary with His judgment brought about by His truth, and that those at war with God are destroyed and replaced with His peace.

Prayer: Almighty God, I know that I am deeply loved by You because of Your truth which has drawn me near to You, and Your peace which has been brought about by Your Presence. Thank You, Lord, for the assurance that by Your truth You preserve me against the lies of the enemy. Thank You for establishing Your peace for me to enjoy. You bless so richly, Lord. I pray that You would cause me to examine all things against Your Truth, that I would remain grounded in Your Word and faithful to obey it. Help me to rest in Your peace, which You give even in the presence of my enemies. Thank You for all that You do for me, Lord. I pray all of these things in Jesus’ Name, AMEN.

Bible-in-a-Year Reading Plan (credit: Bible, studytools.com): 1 Timothy 5:23-6:21; Jeremiah 3-4; Psalm 120

As He Has Promised

Thursday September 2, 2021

Today’s Reading: Psalm 119:65-96

Lord, You have treated Your servant well, just as You promised.

Psalm 119:65

Reflection: The LORD our God always keeps His promises. Throughout Scripture, we are reminded of His faithful love for His people. In bringing the Israelites out of bondage, He saw them to the Promised Land, a good land flowing with milk and honey. Even when they sinned against Him, God was good to fulfill His Word for their benefit. After generations of rebellion, the people were taken into captivity by surrounding nations they strove to be like. Even after they had rejected the LORD, He promised them that He would not forsake them. Instead, He would bring rescue, and He would fulfill His plan of salvation. Through Jesus, the LORD kept this great and wonderful Promise, which achieved far more than could ever be imagined. It would be rescue not only from temporal bondage, but from sin and death. The LORD has indeed treated His people well. They have received undeserved grace through his Work at Calvary. They have everlasting life through His Son. All these and more have been fulfillments of His promises made long ago.

Jesus continues to lavish His followers with all that they need. He has healed them by His wounds and granted them rest in His Presence. He has said He would be with them always, and so continues to be. What He says He will do serves as hope and as warning, as blessing for all who follow and as curse for those who test Him. All the world falls short of perfection, and even the most earnest people are not able to keep all of their promises. But God certainly keeps all of His. Trust in the LORD and all of the promises that He has declared to You through His Word. He is faithful.

Prayer: Loving God, You are forever faithful. Thank You for always keeping Your promises. Thank You for never leaving nor forsaking us, and for not giving us what we deserve, but instead blessing us according to Your great mercy and grace upon us. You owe us nothing, but LORD, You bless us so richly. We know joy, hope, love, and everlasting life all becuase You have so freely given it all to us. Thank You, LORD. We lift up our praises to You for all that You’ve done and declare our gratitude to You in the Name of Your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, AMEN.

Bible-in-a-Year Reading Plan (credit: Bible, studytools.com): 1 Timothy 2; Isaiah 34-35; Psalm 119:65-96

Look Up!

Wednesday September 1, 2021

Today’s Reading: Psalm 119:33-64

Turn my eyes from looking at what is worthless; give me life in Your ways.

Psalm 119:37

Reflection: This prayer echoes the words of Jesus that implore His people to store up for themselves heavenly treasures which moth and rust cannot destroy. Even the most precious metals and valued materials do not last forever. Even the wealth of people are one day either expended entirely or left behind. All of these earthly things are worthless, for they have no everlasting value to them. They will all be left one day in total decay by the elements. Not only are the things of the world worthless in the span of eternity, but they can also be a detriment to our beholding the treasures of heaven in their fullness. They steal away gazes that are meant for the Throne, and sometimes even lure people away from the very Presence of God.

Beware of setting too high a value on earthly treasures, for they do not lead to the true treasure of being with our LORD and Savior. Instead, seek first the Kingdom of God and His Righteousness. Life eternal is found by the Giver of life, Who desires that we do not pass away with the things of the world, but that we live forever. By Him all things of lasting value are added to us, and so are our all our temporal needs.

Upon what or whom are your eyes fixed? Are they set upon what can only be seen and known now and might be gone tomorrow? Or are they focused on the One from Whom all blessings flow? One look at the Savior in all of His glory is worth more than any storehouse could hold. Seek first and above all things Jesus and His Kingdom and watch all the things of earth fade away in the light of Him, Who is glorious.

Prayer: Glorious King, You are marvelous. What a privilege it is to be counted as one of Your Kingdom, and what blessing it is to cared for by You. By Your Son, You have secured for my benefit eternal Salvation, and have covered me by His Righteousness. You have also been so good to fill me with good things each day. I am blessed because You are faithful and true. Thank You, LORD. I praise You, LORD. Please teach me to keep my eyes fixed on the hope of eternity with You, my King. Train me to walk diligently by Your Way. I want to glorify You, LORD, but can only do so by Your help. I am in desperate need of You. I pray these things in thanksgiving and joy, and do so in the Name of Your Son, Jesus Christ, AMEN.

Bible-in-a-Year Reading Plan (credit: Bible, studytools.com): 1 Timothy 1; Isaiah 31-33; Psalm 119:33-64

God’s Law

Tuesday August 31, 2021

Today’s Reading: Psalm 119:1-32

Your decrees are my delight and my counselors.

Psalm 119:24

Reflection: Through the Law, the LORD brings both joy and guidance to His people. God’s decrees are our delight. His Law refreshes the soul, washing over the weary spirit with new, heavenly perspective to help the believer endure any circumstance. It is a welcome respite from the barraging of lies, of temptations, of lures away from God. It is a great pleasure to recount and to practice, for those who follow the Law of the LORD find following after them goodness and mercy all the days of their everlasting life. God’s decrees are our counselors. They are a lamp unto our feet and a light unto our path, which show the heavenly way to navigate the world around us. the LORD’s Law is a great help not only to refresh us in our weariness, but also to strengthen us in the direction of truth and faith. God’s Law not only reveals how to walk in His Will, but also how to think and speak in ways that please Him along the way. When others around us speak and act against us, how else can we know if we are right or wrong but by remembering what God has proclaimed in His holy statutes?

Take heed then, believer, in the Law of the LORD. Since it is a delight to our eyes and ears, do not taste only a small morsel of it with hesitation. Instead, take it all in. Be soaked in the assurance of its safety and revel in the joy and peace it brings to all who follow. Draw nearer to God by it and reflect with radiance the love He has shown by giving it so generously to you. Since the Law of the LORD is what counsels, seek to understand it, believer, and be illumined by God’s wisdom imparted through it. Walk within the truth that it sheds upon your whole life, and move forward confidently in faith by it. Trust wholeheartedly that the LORD Who has sent the Light of the world will not ever leave you in darkness, but will be good to see you through all things. Heed the good Law of the LORD.

Prayer: Gracious LORD, thank You for Your wonderful Law. Thank You for showing me through it how to live and for showing us Your love by it. Your wisdom and love, Your goodness and holiness, Your righteousness are all revealed by Your statutes. I praise You for the ways You continue to bless me by Your Word. I pray that You help me to follow Your Law, LORD. Please teach me and transform me by Your Spirit, in order that I might adhere to Your statutes and honor You. I pray all of this in Jesus’ Name, AMEN.

Bible-in-a-Year Reading Plan (credit: Bible, studytools.com): 2 Thessalonians 3; Isaiah 29-30; Psalm 119:1-32

God’s Faithfulness

Monday August 30, 2021

Today’s Reading: Psalm 118

Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; His faithful love endures forever.

Psalm 118:1

Reflection: God’s faithfulness quells all fear. What evil can humans inflict which the Lord cannot undo? What can anyone take from God’s people that the Lord cannot replenish? The psalmist is assured of his eternal triumph over all his enemies because God is for him.

What an assurance this is: that God is for us His people. For the Lord is a mighty God, capable of using His Power in whatever way He pleases. He is the One Who created the heavens and the earth by His Command. It is a wonder to think of His goodness, of all that He does which is life-giving, loving, and compassionate. But even more wonderful is the thought that this great and good God is for His people; that He does as He wills, but that this Will is to benefit His own. We as God’s people live in confident and joyful faith because our God is for us. This is to be distinguished from the idea that God might somehow serve us. God serves no one. And yet, The Almighty and Everlasting God gladly proves His faithful and enduring Love for us over and over again because He simply desire to do so. And because He does so, we do not have to fear anything that should come against us.

For those who are for God, let this Truth be a reminder which frees you to live confidently and triumphantly in Him. For the Lord is indeed good, and His faithfulness endures forever. There is nothing to fear when we are for God.

Prayer: Eternal King, it is a wonder that You are for me. It is an honor that You grant me a life of victory by Your works which prove Your faithfulness. Thank You for loving me, Lord. Thank You for blessing me so richly with Your joy, peace, and the assurance of Your Salvation. Thank You especially for reminding me that these heavenly gifts have come from Your Hand. I pray that You continue compelling me to live for You as You have committed fully to me. Teach me and train me to be faithful to You, my God. I pray these things in the Name of Jesus Christ, Your Son, AMEN.

Bible-in-a-Year Reading Plan (credit: Bible, studytools.com): 2 Thessalonians 2; Isaiah 27-28; Psalm 118

Sunday’s Message: Power in the Name

August 29nd, 2021

Today’s Reading: Acts 16:16-18

And she did this for many days. But Paul was greatly aggravated, and turning to the spirit, said, “I command you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her!” And it came out right away.

Acts 16:18

Come to our Sunday Worship Service OR Listen to Rev. Moegagogo Solomona’s sermon from today’s 10AM Sunday Worship Livestream on our Facebook Page, www.facebook.com/ccmla.

Sermon Main Idea: Serving God results in resistance; persevere in the Name of Jesus.

Text Notes:

  • v.16 – The girl with the ‘python spirit.’
  • v.17 – Attempts to impede the missionaries.
  • v.18 – The supreme Name of Jesus.

Prayer: Loving God, You are so wonderful to invite us to participate in the work You are doing in the world. You are so kind to strengthen and to guide us by Your Holy Spirit. You are so faithful to equip us with all that we need to serve You diligently. Though we are weak and frail, You, O LORD, make us strong. Please help us to live out of a great and abounding love for You, LORD. Show us how to depend on You in all situations. Teach us to lead others in faith by following You and obeying Your direction. In the Name of Jesus Christ we pray, AMEN.

Thru the Bible in a year (credit: Biblestudytools.com):2 Thessalonians 1; Isaiah 25-26; Psalm 117

Deliverance and Safety

Saturday August 28, 2021

Today’s Reading: Psalm 116

Because He has turned His ear to me, I will call out to Him as long as I live.

Psalm 116:2

Reflection: A young infant knows not where it is or what it needs. It can barely behold the world that surrounds it. Its survival is dependent upon the care that it receives. We are likened to newborn babies in the eyes of our LORD. We are in constant need of Him. We are inadequate to meet own needs, helpless against danger, and unaware of much around us. Most times, we do not even know what it is we need, but only that we are lacking in what we need to survive. In hearing our cries of distress to Him, God answers and provides. He comes to our aid with compassion and concern. In our helplessness, He provides rescue. In our trouble and sorrow, He draws near to comfort and console us. The LORD not only draws near, but stays near in order that we might rest in the fullness of His peace, even in the darkest of nights.

The extent of God’s deliverance is a humbling thought to reflect upon in light of how we must seem in His sight. As a nurturing parent, the LORD is adamant to ensure our well-being and is mindful of our helplessness before Him. He knows that we are but dust, and that, in His eyes, the span of our lives on earth are but a moment. The extent of God’s deliverance is a humbling thought to reflect upon in light of Who He is. A wondrous God, a mighty God, a sovereign God upon His Holy Throne does not hesitate to draw near to help us, His people. The LORD’s compassion and grace far outweighs all that might endanger us. He is indeed good.

Prayer: Almighty God, thank You for Your compassion upon us Your people. Thank You for Your continued care over us. Though You are eternal and see that we are dust, You are quick to shower upon us Your mercy and grace. You are swift to deliver us in times of distress. You are good to nourish us by Your truth. Please, LORD, teach us to trust in You. Help us to remain dependent upon Your perfect care. We love You, LORD, and lift up this prayer to You in Jesus’ Name, AMEN.

Bible-in-a-Year Reading Plan (credit: Bible, studytools.com): 1 Thessalonians 5; Isaiah 23-24; Psalm 116