You will be my witnesses.”
Ac. 1:8 NIV
A witness is someone who sees and experiences an event, then testifies to it in court in a way that convinces others. And that’s what you have been called to do! You say, “But I don’t feel qualified.” God doesn’t call the qualified, He qualifies the called. And don’t let Satan convince you otherwise, because he will try. He will tell you God has an IQ requirement, or an entry fee; that He employs only specialists, experts, and high-powered personalities. No, Jesus said to His disciples, “You will be my witnesses…to the ends of the earth.” You uneducated and simple folk. You temperamental net casters and tax collectors. You will be my witnesses.”The one thing the disciples had going for them was their willingness to take a step when Jesus said, “follow me.” So if you’re more plumber than executive, or more blue jeans than blue blood, you’re qualified! “Few of you were wise in the world’s eyes or powerful of wealthy when God called you. Instead, God chose things the world considers foolish in order to shame those who think they are wise. And He chose things that are powerless to shame those who are powerful” (1Cor 1:26-27 NLT). So pray: “Lord, You’ve called me into Your Kingdom to serve You in this specific place at this specific time, and for this specific purpose. Despite my ordinariness I belong to You-and You are anything but ordinary! Today help me to pour out Your grace and compassion upon others, that they too may experience the richness of Your love.”
“Remember…few of you were wise in the world’s eyes…when God called you.”
1 Cor 1:26 NLT
Max Lucado writes: “Edith Hayes was a spry eighty-year-old with thinning white hair, a wiry five-foot frame, and an unquenchable compassion for South Florida’s cancer patients. I was fresh out of seminary in 1979 and sitting in an office of unpacked boxes when she walked in and introduced herself. ‘My name in Edith, and I help cancer patients.’ She extended her hand. I offered a chair. She politely declined. ‘Too busy. You’ll see my team here at the church building every Tuesday morning. You’re welcome to come, but if you do we’ll put you to work.’ Her team, I came to learn, included a hundred or so silver haired women who occupied themselves with the unglamorous concern of sore-seepage. They made cancer wounds their mission, stitching together truckloads of disposable pads each Tuesday, and then delivering them to patients throughout the week. Edith rented an alley apartment, lived on her late husband’s pension, wore glasses that magnified her pupils, and ducked applause like artillery fire.” Edith’s story does away with the excuse, “I’m too old to do something for God.” Noah was over six hundred years old when he came out of the ark and helped to start the human race all over again. If you’re older, think about it this way: You’re a walking repository of decades of wisdom and knowledge. So before you leave this earth, endeavor to give to others what God has entrusted to you. Right now somebody, somewhere, needs something you have, and if you ask God, He will show you who they are. When He does-get involved!
“Perhaps the Lord will act in our behalf.”
1 Sa 14:6 NIV
During the early days of Saul’s kingship, the Philistines controlled the western border of Israel, and battle lines were drawn at the pass called Michmash. Saul seemed content to sit on the sidelines, but Jonathan wanted to be on the front line. “Come, let’s go over to the Philistine outpost on the other side” (v.1 NIV). There was only Jonathan and his armor bearer, so the odds didn’t look good. But when you make a move that is motivated by God’s glory, it moves the heart and hand of God. What it requires is a step of faith. And often it’s the longest, hardest, and scariest step you’ve ever taken. Usually when Israel’s kings went into battle it was because they had received a word from the Lord assuring their victory. Jonathan had received no such word. He simply said, “Perhaps the Lord will act in our behalf.” Most people operate out of the opposite mentality: “Perhaps the Lord won’tact in our behalf.” They let fear dictate their decisions instead of faith. So they end up with Saul, sitting on the sidelines. And how did the battle turn out for Jonathan and his armor bearer? “So the Lord rescued Israel that day” (v. 23 NIV). All it took was one daring decision! That’s all it ever takes. When you move, God will move on your behalf. And if you don’t move, you’ll always wonder “what if?” Our longest regrets are our inaction regrets-the things we would have, could have, or should have done but did not do. So the word for you today is: Trust God, and act!
“ They shall come back from the land of the enemy.”
Jer 31:16 NKJV
Are you living under a cloud of guilt, feeling like a failure because your child has gone astray? Don’t do it! The Bible teaches that sometimes children simply won’t listen to the counsel of their parents. Solomon was probably giving a word of personal testimony when he wrote, “A wise son heeds his father’s instruction, but a scoffer doesn’t not listen to rebuke” (Pr 13:1 NKJV). Jesus didn’t hold the father accountable for the fact that his prodigal son went astray (See Lk 15:11). And if you did your best, God doesn’t hold youaccountable either. The truth is that bad parents sometimes turn out good children, and good parents sometimes have children who go bad. God’s first two children were placed in a perfect paradise, yet they rebelled. Ultimately, we’re all given the power to choose. There comes a time when every child is no longer a child, and has to take responsibility for his or her actions. So if you’ve done your best as a parent, don’t let the Devil put a guilt trip on you. And if you’ve failed as a parent, it’s not the unpardonable sin. Not only will God forgive you, but you can also claim this wonderful promise: “Refrain your voice from weeping and your eyes from tears; for your work shall be rewarded, says the Lord, and they shall come back from the land of the enemy. There is hope in your future…that your children shall come back to their own border” (Jer 31:16-17 NKJV). Don’t give up on your children because God hasn’t. Keep praying and believing–and allow Him to work on them.
“The wife must respect her husband.”
Eph 5:33 NLT
Paul writes, “The wife must respect her husband.” Pay close attention to the word “must.” This is a command from the Lord, not a suggestion of a topic that’s open to debate. Notice, the Bible doesn’t say a woman must “love” her husband, but it does say that she must “respect” him. And guys, before you take the throne and start handing out decrees, that means you must prove yourself worthy of respect! To respect your husband is to hold him in esteem and honor. What a woman needs from a man is located in her heart, and what a man needs from a woman is located in his head. It’s called his ego. You say, “I’m not going to feed his ego!” That would be like your husband saying, “I’m not going to feed your heart.” Men long to have their egos fed. When you fail to feed your husband’s ego, he may end up vulnerable to somebody else who feeds it for him! As a wife, you were created by God with the ability to feed your husband’s ego in a healthy manner, by respecting and honoring him. There’s nothing more dangerous in a marriage relationship than disrespect. When a man doesn’t feel respected, he will either rebel against you, remove himself, or become passive. God has given two simple rules for building a successful marriage. The first is for husbands to love their wives, and the second is for wives to respect their husbands. And when you operate by God’s rules you get God’s results. So if you want God’s best, and His blessing at home-start doing things His way.