STUFF

2 Corinthians 13:11-14 (NRSV)

Finally, brothers and sisters, farewell. Put things in order, listen to my appeal, agree with one another, live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with you. Greet one another with a holy kiss. All the saints greet you.

The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with all of you.

Paul urged the Corinthian church to put things in order. The proper order is God first, Others second, and lastly Self.

In the last couple of weeks we have been dealing with STUFF. We’ve emptied storage units that has held things we have neither seen nor needed for a decade or more. We’ve also completely emptied our summer home. We have shed literally hundreds of pounds of STUFF. We still have more to do. We’ve been sorting into three piles, keep, donate, thrash.

Perhaps, if we had put our lives in the proper order of 1. God, 2. others, 3. self, we might not have accumulated so much STUFF!

I pray that the Lord Jesus Christ will act kindly toward all of you, in ways that you do not deserve, that God will show all of you how much he loves you, and that the Holy Spirit will cause you to have good fellowship with him and with each other. Amen.

©2020 Thomas E Williams

Made Sorrowful

1 Peter 1:5-7

By the power of God, you are guarded through faith for a salvation which is ready to be revealed in the end time. In this, you should exult, if now, for a brief time, it is necessary to be made sorrowful by various trials, so that the testing of your faith, which is much more precious than gold tested by fire, may be found in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ.

We are made sorrowful for a time, not by God, but by the trials and tribulations of life inn this sinful broken world. But this world is temporary. The world to come it’s where we will be glorified, even as Jesus it’s glorified.

There is a saying, “When you reach the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on.” Not bad advise. Sometimes the only way out if a trouble is to outlast it. We, who follow Christ, have been promised a crown puff glory when we have endured.

Prayer:

Lord God, lover of my soul. You have promised good to me, if I overcome the trials and temptations of this present life. Lead me not into temptations but deliver me from evil. All praise and glory is Yours now and forever. Amen.

A Person After God’s Own Heart

1 Samuel 16:6-7 When they came, he looked on Eliab and thought, “Surely the Lord’s anointed is now before the Lord.”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 does not see as mortals see; they look on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.” Samuel was led by the Lord to choose a new king, even though Saul was still considered king. However, because Saul had unrepentantly disobeyed God, the Lord head withdraw from him. When Samuel saw the oldest of Jessie’s sons, he may have thought that this tall good looking man must be the chosen one. After all Saul had been chosen because he was handsome and head and shoulders above all of the Israelites.(1) God, however, had a different criteria for choosing the new king. He looked upon the heart and found David to be a man after His own heart.(2)
(1) 1 Samuel 9:2, (2) 1 Samuel 13:14
As I write this, we are in an election year. We will soon cast votes for the person who will lead our nation for the following four years. How Will we choose that person? Will we look upon the outward appearance or will we pray to be guided by the Holy Spirit to choose as God would choose? Perhaps God’s chose isn’t even inn the ballot. We may need to pray that God changes the heart of the elected person. Prayer: Lord, God, our true sovereign, King of the Universe, enlighten us to your will. Help it’s to choose wisely the person to govern us. Amen. Also visit my other blogs
  • Tom and Ella’s Daily Journal of Our Lives
  • http://TomAndEllaJournal.comMy sermons blog Armchair Sermons. Sermons posted Sundays 10 AM central time. ©2020 Thomas E Williams
    My sermons blog Armchair Sermons. Sermons posted Sundays 10 AM central time. ©2020 Thomas E Williams

    Not Only Bread

    Matthew 4:4

    Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.”

    Psalm 119:103

    How sweet are your words to my taste,
    sweeter than honey to my mouth!

    As my bodily life needs bread (food) to survive, so does my eternal life need to be fed inn God’s words.

    The psalmist knew the value of God’s words. But I just noticed something. He did NOT say that God’s words were sweeter than honey to his EARS but you his MOUTH.

    If we want the fullness of His words, we must speak them to others, then will they become “sweeter than honey.”

    Prayer :

    Fill me, Lord, to overflowing. Cause Your sweet words to pour forth from my mouth.

    Amen

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  • I Will Give Thanks to Your Name

    Psalms 138:1-2 1. I will give thanks to you with all my heart. I will make music to praise you in front of the false gods. 2. I will bow toward your holy temple. I will give thanks to your name because of your mercy and truth. You have made your name and your promise greater than everything.

    David could and did make music to praise God. I don’t have the gift of creating rhyme, rhythm, and melody. But I can sing His praises thanks to the talents of those who can craft musical poems from the holy scriptures.

    Beautiful words, wonderful words, wonderful words of life;Wonderful Words of Life by Philip P. Bliss

    Lord, accept our heartfelt praise whether raised in song, spoken word, or groaning to deep for words. Because your name and your promise is greater than all else.

    Amen.

    . Also visit my other blogs
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  • ©2020 Thomas E Williams

    SAFE IN HIS PRESENCE

    Psalms 23 “The LORD is my shepherd. I am never in need. He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside peaceful waters. He renews my soul. He guides me along the paths of righteousness for the sake of his name. Even though I walk through the dark valley of death, because you are with me, I fear no harm. Your rod and your staff give me courage. You prepare a banquet for me while my enemies watch. You anoint my head with oil. My cup overflows. Certainly, goodness and mercy will stay close to me all the days of my life, and I will remain in the LORD’s house for days without end.” This Psalm can arguably be called the most familiar chapter of the Bible. I have used a more modern version here than the King James that is more familiar. I find that different versions may give me new insights into familiar passages. I’m concentrating on the following section of the Psalm. “Even though I walk through the dark valley of death, because you are with me, I fear no harm. Your rod and your staff give me courage.” The first thing that pops out at me here is that the Shepherd doesn’t lead his sheep around or away from this valley. But goes with them through the valley of death. Did you hear that? Through and with. Because the Shepherd is with them there is no fear. They trust in him to keep them safe even in this dark place. The Shepherd’s tools reassure the sheep that everything will be alright. The rod is a weapon to be used in defense or offence as needed. So the sheep are comforted knowing that the Shepherd has the strength, ability, and tool to protect them from those that would do them harm. The staff was a long stick with a curved end that could be used as a weapon if needed, but its primary purpose is to protect the sheep from themselves. The staff corrects the path of wayward sheep by general nudges or perhaps not so gentle for those more prone to wander. The crooked end is perfect for lifting those who have fallen or become stuck. There rod to protect from outside threats and the staff to protect them from themselves. Truly ,I fear no harm, for he is with me. Prayer Lord, Master, Protector, in times like these we need your protection more than ever. There may be an invisible danger in the air we breath or the things we touch. We believe that you want only the best for us. Whether you lead us around three danger or take us through it, we put our truest in you. Your will be done. Amen Also visit my other blogs
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  • ©2020 Thomas E Williams

    What it’s the Greatest Commandment?

    Exodus 20:1-7 And the Lord spoke all these words: “I am the Lord your God, who led you away from the land of Egypt, out of the house of servitude. You shall not have strange gods before me. You shall not make for yourself a graven image, nor a likeness of anything that is in heaven above or on earth below, nor of those things which are in the waters under the earth. You shall not adore them, nor shall you worship them. I am the Lord your God: strong, zealous, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the sons to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me, and showing mercy to thousands of those who love me and keep my precepts. You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain. For the Lord will not hold harmless one who takes the name of the Lord his God falsely.” This is the long version of the first three of the Ten Commandments. When Jesus was asked, “What is the greatest commandment?” “Jesus said to him: “ ‘You shall love the Lord your God from all your heart, and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the greatest and first commandment.” (Matthew 22:37-38) Jesus, in effect, rolled the first three commandments into one. Those three all deal with who God is, and how He is to be treated by humankind. He is to be loved completely. Love God more than your self, your spouse, your children, your country, your job, your bank account, your hobbies, your television, your … your anything. Anything, that is cherished above the Lord, is an idol. “You shall not adore them, nor shall you worship them.” Prayer Lord, forgive us for those times we have allowed or hearts to be drawn away from you. Lord, we adore you. “Your teachings are worth more to me than a thousand pieces of silver and gold. (Psalms 119:72) Amen. Also visit my other blogs
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  • ©2020 Thomas E Williams

    Study, Meditate, Follow

    “Behold, I am instructing you. Be strengthened, and be steadfast. Do not dread, and do not fear. For the Lord your God is with you in all things, wherever you may go.” (Joshua 1:9) I would love to claim that promise for myself. However, it was not a general promise to all, nor was it without conditions. “Therefore, be strengthened and be very steadfast, so that you may observe and accomplish the entire law, which Moses, my servant, instructed to you. You may not turn aside from it to the right, nor to the left. So may you understand all that you should do. The book of this law shall not depart from your mouth. Instead, you shall meditate upon it, day and night, so that you may observe and do all the things that are written in it. Then you shall direct your way and understand it.” (Joshua 1:7-8) If I am to claim any of this promise, I must read, study, and meditate daily on the scriptures. Many centuries after Joshua, Paul wrote to Timothy, “All Scripture, having been divinely inspired, is useful for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for instruction in justice, so that the man of God may be perfect, having been trained for every good work.” (2 Timothy 3:16-17) Realize that the Scripture to which Paul is referring is the same Scripture God commanded Joshua to study. Do you want to be a man or woman out God? How can you expect to follow God if you have not studied His word? Any fool can claim to be right before God. But only a student of scriptures can be confirmed righteous. Prayer Lord, as I study and meditate on Your word, lead me in the path of righteousness. Amen. Also visit my other blogs
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  • ©2020 Thomas E Williams

    First Choice or Last Hope

    Our church has a wonderful prayer chain. Anyone can email a prayer request to the church. That email is then forwarded, along with a wonderful prayer, to all who have agreed to be “prayer warriors.” However, I often notice from these requests that it appears that prayer (God) is the final option when going to God should be the first option. And I will admit that I am too often guilty of this myself. Understand I have nothing against modern medicine. Indeed I thank God for the wisdom and knowledge is available to us. However, I fear that our faith in doctors is sometimes greater than our faith in God. James 5:13-15 13. Are you having troubles? You should pray. Are you happy? You should sing. 14. Are you sick? Ask the elders of the church to come and rub oil on you in the name of the Lord and pray for you. 15. If such a prayer is offered in faith, it will heal anyone who is sick. The Lord will heal them. And if they have sinned, he will forgive them. Philippians 4:6-7 6. Don’t worry about anything, but pray and ask God for everything you need, always giving thanks for what you have. 7. And because you belong to Christ Jesus, God’s peace will stand guard over all your thoughts and feelings. His peace can do this far better than our human minds. Prayer Lord, we believe that you hear our requests. We believe that you will answer in your time and in your way. Forgive us for not coming to you first. Forgive us for turning to you oily when we have given up hope. Amen. Also visit my other blogs
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  • My NEW sermons blog Armchair Sermons. Sermons posted Sundays 10 AM central time.
  • ©2020 Thomas E Williams

    (For further reading: Preaching to People Who Have “Heard it all Before” — By: J. Brian Tucker )