Monday, April 19, 2010

Daily Journal Tuesday 20th of April 2010

Hearing from Angels

S - "Last night an angel of the God whose I am and whom I serve stood beside me and said, "Don't be afraid Paul. You must stand trial before Caesar, and God has graciously given you the lives of all who sail with you." Acts 27:23-24

O - An angel spoke to Paul. It might have been in a dream, a vision or just plain straight out appeared. The angel was from God and spoke clear, strong words of assurance, "Don't be afraid Paul." The angel knew Paul's name, knew his situation, knew Caesar's name, knew that the lives of the people on the boat were in danger.

A - God knows us. He knows me and my situation, the dangers I face, the things that concern me. What an encouragement this must have been to Paul. That God would reassure him by sending an angel must have given him great confidence. Sometimes God has sent people who have encouraged me with a word from God. Sometimes a letter, a book, a point a preacher has made, God has used to encourage me. Sometimes I have read a verse and had a strong impression that I have known was God speaking. It encourages me to know that God knows and when he feels necessary he can speak directly to me. Most of the time I just need to do what he's already told me to do in his word, the Bible.

P - Father, today I am reminded how you speak and guide. Speak Lord to me today. Let me hear and respond to your promptings and to obey your word each and everyday. Amen.

Daily Reading - Acts 27

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Daily Journal Monday 19th of April 2010

Making The Most of Every Opportunity

S - Paul replied, "Short time or long - I pray to God that not only you but all who are listening to me today may become what I am, except for these chains." Acts 26:29

O - Paul, before King Agrippa, Bernice, high ranking military officers and the prominent men of the city, gave his defence. There was great pomp and ceremony and Paul's life was in danger. But Paul saw the situation not as one where he could save his own skin and escape death, but rather as another opportunity to share the gospel so that some might hear and be saved. This was his longing. This was his prayer.

A - I too, like Paul need to remember, that no-one, no matter how rich, how "beautiful," how seemingly all together they appear, no matter how important their position, no-one is beyond reach of the gospel. And vice versa. No matter how poor, lonely, broken, angry, violent, estranged and bitter a person is, they are not beyond reach of the gospel. I must remember, every opportunity to share is an opportunity for people to respond. I must never say people's "no" for them as they might just say "yes."

P - Father, help me have the courage and willingness to share with great and small, the truth of the gospel. I pray that many would come to know you Jesus through my faithful witness. Amen.

Daily Reading - Acts 26

Monday, April 12, 2010

Daily Journal Tuesday 13th of April 2010

I Must Confess!

S - Many of those who believed now came and openly confessed what they had done. Acts 19:18

O - Fear gripped the people when they realised that demons were afraid of Jesus and Paul but not of the seven sons of the Jewish High Priest. The were filled with fear and honoured Jesus' name. They confessed openly their sins. They burnt their scrolls even though they were worth a lost of money. And the Bible reveals the result..."In this way the word of the Lord spread widely and grew in power."

- There was fear of God, there was honouring of his name, there was confession, there was spreading of the word and there was a growing in power. Today I guess its so often the opposite. People tend to not fear God, they blaspheme his name, they claim their own righteousness and the word of God is not spread and the church doesn't seem to grow in power. We say this is cultural, its Western culture, but it may be that we have lost the fear of a holy God, heartfelt and genuine confession that leads to repentance and great faith.

Is there mighty, powerful things that God is wanting to do in and through me but my lack of fear, confession, repentance, and faith is stopping this? What about in our church? What about our cities churches? Has being a church become more about services and programs rather than the confession and prayer to a holy, powerful God. I need to ponder this more. What do I need to confess? What do I need to burn?

P - Father God, mighty in power, help me honour your name in everything I do, for your glory, Amen.

Daily Reading - Acts 19