1 Samuel 16:6-7
“When they came, he looked on Eliab and thought, “Surely the Lord’s anointed is before him.” But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.”
Samuel went to Bethlehem to find who the Lord would choose as the next king of Israel. He saw a big strong dude in Eliab, thought it was him but Samuel was wrong. David was actually the person the Lord had chosen, not because he had the best physical appearance, he was just a skinny little kid, but he had something that set him apart from Eliab and the rest of his brothers, his heart. I notice a lot that I measure how strong my relationship is with the Lord with worldly vision. How many church activities I’m involved in, how much I give, how much I read in His Word, or the knowledge I put in my head. In reality none of those things matter if my heart isn’t affected by those things. When our hearts is the foundation of our relationship with the Lord, everything on the outside changes, not physically but how we live and walk out what God called us to be. It all starts at our hearts, that’s the foundation on which the Lord works. Sometimes I get caught up in how much I can know but that doesn’t allow me to fully access how the Lord wants me to grow! It’s just a heart thing.
Got a couple of Sunday Funnies for ya about kids in church! Hope you have an awesome day of worship and rest! Get ready, BIG week ahead and we’re going to kill it!!!
-“A boy in Sunday school had been taught by the same teacher for a number of years. She had a way of telling stories and she always ended them by saying: “And the moral of the story is…”
Eventually, he moved up in Sunday school and had a new teacher.
After a few weeks, the minister asked the boy how he liked his new Sunday school teacher. He replied: “She is great; she does not have any morals.”
-“There was a very gracious lady who was mailing an old family Bible to her brother in another part of the country.
“Is there anything breakable in here?” asked the postal clerk.
“Only the Ten Commandments.” answered the lady.”
-“Sunday after church, a Mom asked her very young daughter what the lesson was about.
The daughter answered, “Don’t be scared, you’ll get your quilt.”
Needless to say, the Mom was perplexed. Later in the day , the pastor stopped by for tea and the Mom asked him what that morning’s Sunday school lesson was about.
He said “Be not afraid, thy comforter is coming.”
As you can see in the picture today, that little piece of wood is making a cross. It was a day just working in the grocery store for my dad. A regular day like any other, being a grocery stocker, I was pulling pallets of groceries from the stock room out into the store to put them in their place on the shelves. Then when pulling a pallet out, I heard a, “CRACK!” A piece on the bottom of the wooden pallet got held up over a bump and a piece of the pallet broke off. Pallets breaking is a pretty usual occurrence so I just kept pulling it out into the store paying it no attention.
Then, about 30 minutes later I was approached by one of my co-workers. As we were standing right where the pallet had broken off, she showed me what it broke into, a cross. And obviously it wasn’t just two pieces of wood crossing each other, it was in the shape of a cross similar to the one Jesus died on. With the long piece going up and the shorter piece going out where the person’s arms would lay during their crucifixion. I stood there in amazement! It was hard to believe that something so usual and small would turn into a picture of the greatest symbol this world has ever seen!
I didn’t know what to say as the word traveled throughout the store, pictures were taken, and just mentioning how awesome a reminder that was from God for the pallet to break into a cross, Gospel conversations began to take place with others about it. That one cross, that one random and wild moment of two pieces of wood forming something that literally means everything for us through what Jesus had done for us there. On a day like any other, where everyone there is searching for some source of joy and hope because you know how fun “working” is!
I wanted to think it was just random and it was no big deal but what took place after the cross was noticed, it was obvious to see God’s fingerprints all over it!!! There was someone added to the God Gold list that day after talking about the cross! Someone who is now receiving God’s truth daily! There were conversations had about the cross, about Jesus! How DAGGUM CRAZY is it that God would set this up?!?! How much crazier is it that God didn’t just leave it at a busted pallet, but He used this random and divine work to open up doors into others lives! To open up hearts and ears to hear and see how powerful, in control and how much LIFE God brings to us through His Word and through His Son, Jesus Christ!!! I wish I could go into more detail about all that God continued to do afterwards in the lives of those who saw Him that day but I’ll just say, it opened up some doors to see how He wildly opens up our eyes to Him and draws us closer to His amazing love! And if you haven’t learned yet, the closer one gets to His unrelenting and powerful love, life change begins to take place and it’s awesome to watch God work it together!
It’s crazy how God works and I can say I wasn’t just reminded of how awesome He works things together that day, but I was reminded to keep my eyes open as much as possible in my life to witness those crazy “God moments.” He is at work around us all the time and sometimes in ways we can’t understand but stay open and pay attention! It’s so cool to see God at work!!!
And what’s even cooler as God intervenes in our lives and makes Himself known, He has already set up ways to get His truth to others, to get the Good News of Jesus Christ out! To share His love with the world! A lot of times it’s through you and me but I saw that day how God used the God Gold as big stepping stone to even bigger steps ahead in someone’s relationship with Him! There is so many different ways that God gets the truth of His Word out and the Gospel of Christ! It’s so exciting to see the God Gold as another one of those ways to deliver Jesus to others! The One who contains a love that saves us and changes lives all the time! I’m so thankful to be able to send these messages to you and humbled to realize the power of sharing Jesus with others! His love and truth has done nothing but transform my life since day one of receiving Him, that’s why the God Gold is sent out with the hope that you too can receive Jesus into your life! Share the God Gold!!! Tell somebody about Jesus!!! Look for the crazy little ways God sets you up to share Him with others and SHARE HIM!!!!
“Then I turned my face to the Lord God, seeking him by prayer and pleas for mercy with fasting and sackcloth and ashes. I prayed to the Lord my God and made confession, saying, “O Lord, the great and awesome God, who keeps covenant and steadfast love with those who love him and keep his commandments,”
This week is my first week starting a summer internship at the church I’m at. Leading up to that first day of the internship I was beginning to be fearful, some doubts and worry crept into my mind. It’s not that this opportunity is bad by any means, it actually couldn’t have worked out any better to get to learn from so many like-minded, faithful people. Why did I have all that negative creeping up? Mainly, because it’s a new situation with a lot of new faces and I’ll be be doing new things that I’ve never done before. New and change can be scary because it makes us get really uncomfortable.
The first morning of the internship I woke up with those butterflies like it was the first day of school. I opened my Bible to these verses from Daniel. I noticed in the context that Daniel was praying out of need for himself and the Lord’s people. Daniel shows throughout this book how important and crucial prayer is for believers, but here I noticed something that gave me not an example to learn from but a description of God that I could surrender myself to and hold onto in these uncomfortable times I faced.
Daniel shows us an example of laying our lives before God in prayer, seeking Him for help, provision, and guidance in our lives. We see from Daniel that praying is the only answer in any situation of life but from Daniel’s description when he called on God, describing God as who He truly is, “great” and “awesome.” Calling out the characteristics of God, how He is always faithful to keep His promises to us, to deliver us and be there for us. How God’s love for us is “steadfast.” Constant, always increasing, and never-failing. That’s how God feels and acts towards His children.
That struck me right there, instead of just going to God like He’s a genie in a bottle that’s going to grant my wishes. Stepping back from all of my needs, complaints, and insecurities long enough to really call on God for who He is, how He feels about us and how He treats us. Seeing God in the truth of who He is, that He is greater than any darkness in this world or uncomfortable situation we will ever face, and how is so faithful and constant in His love for us. My eyes got big and heart was filled with peace as I went into this new situation filled with a lot of uncomfortable change and new things. I felt a confidence that was overflowing despite how I wanted to feel or how I would’ve felt yesterday, I had no reason to put my trust in me or my human ability because of seeing God in His fullness. He made it easy to trust Him and find my confidence in Him and Him alone.
I was given a schedule from the youth pastor I’m interning under and after lunch for 30 minutes, he gave me a scheduled time for prayer. I kept looking at it all morning thinking, “I’ve never prayed for 30 minutes at one time.” And I kept thinking about all the other tasks I had to do but I followed the schedule and took this BIGGER and TRUE view of God into that time of prayer. Stopping from all my to-do’s, stepping back from my worries and fears and stepping into His presence, it changed my heart, my day, and this time with God has changed my life.
I thought before no way I can pray for 30 minutes straight, got off my knees 27 minutes later and time had flown by! I felt renewed, fresh and ready to attack the rest of the day ahead! I don’t write this to recommend that you pray, I write this to remind you as Daniel has done in these verses of the powerful, mighty, awesome and constantly loving God you are speaking to. Just the fact we have access to God blows my mind but just take time in your day to hit your knees, let all the other stuff you’re dealing with take a time out and surrender yourself before this mighty God we serve! Impossible turns to more than possible, fear turns to faith, and doubt turns to hope and confidence! Not because of you but the faithful and loving God you are speaking to! Know who you’re speaking to and He’ll do more than change your day, He’ll change your LIFE!!!!