God’s Faithfulness ~ Our Everlasting HOPE!
LORD, You are my God; I will exalt You and praise Your name, for in perfect faithfulness You have done wonderful things, things planned long ago. Isaiah 25:1 NIV
Now I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse. And He who sat on him was called Faithful and True … And He has on His robe and on His thigh a name written: KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS. Revelation 19:11-16 NKJV
The resurrection of Christ invites faithfulness to a new standard. Christ calls us to be people of faith, identifies us as His faithful people, and affords us the opportunity to be faithful in worship, obedience, study and service. God longs for His character and truth to be reflected in the lives of His people. KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS, the One who is called Faithful and True, challenges each of us to live faithfully, to live by His own example.
Our faithfulness cannot be limited to religious activities or righteous deeds but must secure its foundation in the faithful promises of God. In Christ, we can love without perfection, have certainty without understanding, experience peace within grief. When God dwells in the hearts of His people, we have new awareness, new insight, and new hope. The Holy Spirit empowers us to see those living on the margins, to offer Bread of Life to a starving world, and to retell the stories of God’s faithfulness.
El Shaddai, Immanuel, LORD of Lords – Hallelujah! Christ has died! Christ is risen! Christ will come again! Such an offering leaves my heart in wordless praise, with endless wonder. Great is Your faithfulness! You take me to Your high places of blessing! I pray to stand firm in my faith, to listen for Your voice, to respond to Your calling. Perfect Love, You pour unmeasured Grace over me. Your faithfulness is everlasting! Amen! –Donna Oswalt
A life of faith does not consist of acts of worship or of great self-denial and heroic virtues, but of all the daily, conscious acts of our lives. Oswald Chambers
- Read the Scriptures from Isaiah (in the Old Testament) and Revelation (in the New Testament); do you find comfort in knowing God planned Perfect Love long ago?
- Consider This: Jesus is called “Faithful and True” and teaches us how to live. Are you in the group called “people of faith”?
- What is the role of the Holy Spirit?
- Name some specific things you can do to offer the love of Christ to the world?
Focus Point: KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS, the One who is called Faithful and True, challenges each of us to live faithfully, to live by His own example.
Listening and Obedience
Henri Nouwen writes ~ A spiritual life requires discipline because we need to learn to listen to God, who constantly speaks but whom we seldom hear. When, however, we learn to listen, our lives become obedient lives. The word obedient comes from the Latin word audire, which means “listening”.
We struggle with obedience. Either we do not hear what God is saying to us, or we choose not to do what He asks. If we do not listen for God, we have little hope of developing our obedience. Matthew 6:6 in The Message reads:Find a quiet, secluded place so you won’t be tempted to role-play before God. Just be there as simply and honestly as you can manage. The focus will shift from you to God, and you will begin to sense His grace.
What is more important – faith or obedience? I believe faith is the foundation for our listening hearts. Without faith, can there be obedience? It would seem that Henri Nouwen goes one step further and says that without listening, obedience is absent. Nouwen concludes ~ The core of all prayer is indeed listening, obediently standing in the presence of God. ~ ©dho/mangroveministries
When you pray, go into your inner room, close your door and pray to your Father… Matthew 6:6 NASB
READ: Romans 4:1-3
- Define “righteousness”
- Consider This: The Message (verse 3) reads – But the story we’re given is a God-story, not an Abraham-story. What we read in Scripture is, “Abraham entered into what God was doing for him, and that was the turning point. He trusted God to set him right instead of trying to be right on his own.”
- How is Abraham an example of faith and obedience?
- Can you apply this truth about Abraham to your life? Abraham’s faith grew stronger because he dared to trust God; Abraham trusted God to do “what only God could do”.