God did WHAT?



Today’s Reading: Job 20-21, Acts 10:24-48

Today’s Reflection: Acts 10:33b …Now therefore are we all here present before God, to hear all things that are commanded thee of God.

God still sends messengers! I like Cornelius’ attitude, don’t you? He knew that God brought them all together so that he and his household could hear a word from God which was to be delivered by His messenger, Peter. And boy did Peter PREACH JESUS! 

Time would not permit me to give too much detain to the results of this church meeting, suffice it to say, they listened while Peter preached and The Holy Spirit had His way in their lives! It was a MIGHTY move of God! 

And knowing the context of how this meeting came to be (I encourage you to read all of Acts 10 to get the whole picture), I see a common denominator; both Cornelius AND Peter were very sensitive to the leadership of God’s Spirit in their lives. 

Had they not been, it is quite possible that this important meeting might have never taken place! Which brings me to this thought; I wonder how many Kingdom connections we miss throughout our lifetimes because of our lack of sensitivity to the voice of God’s Spirit in our lives. 

I simply want you to meditate upon that thought with me for just a moment. Cornelius, a Gentile, and Peter, a Jew, were beforehand the most unlikely to ever get together and fellowship, as it simply was not their custom. 

However, God told Cornelius to send specifically for Peter (something he would not have been naturally inclined to do), and God told Peter (to prepare him to be able to receive this invitation from the Gentiles) that he was to have no respecter of persons, and to not call that which God had cleansed “unclean”. 

In other words, had GOD not spoken to them both, and prepared them both to receive each other, this connection would have never taken place. However, God DID speak to them both, and they BOTH listened and obeyed! 

And now for the miracle; a Gentile is open-minded to a Jew’s preaching, and the Jew is open minded to preaching to the Gentile, and both are in good spirits about it, wishing no ill, but only the will of God to be done! 

Application? The Gospel will break every boundary set up by men, their traditions, and their man-made religions. In fact, don’t be surprised if God hooks you up with someone you would have never been naturally inclined to connect with. That’s Him!

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Walking in the Strength of God




Today’s Reading: Job 17-19, Acts 10:1-23

Today’s Reflection: Job 17:9 The righteous also shall hold on his way, and he that hath clean hands shall be stronger and stronger.

In essence, we see here that strength is a byproduct of righteousness. “The righteous also shall hold on his way…” implies strength. Think about it; how many dangers, toils, and snares do we as Christians endure as we walk with our precious Lord? Does it not take strength to “hold on his way”? Indeed it does! 


That thought is then clarified in the second half of this verse, plainly stating that “he that hath clean hands shall be stronger and stronger”, implying that right standing with God equates with growing in strength. That said, I am brought to a point of wonder as I meditate on these great truths, and here is why. 

Is it not true that the trials and tests we endure, at times, drain us of our strength? Is it not true that we can often find ourselves depleted of strength as we strive to serve our Lord? If so, then why are we taught what seems to be the opposite in our text today? Is there contradiction between what is Biblically stated, and what is realistically experienced? 

Absolutely not, and here’s the explanation; our strength source is unrelated to our physical, emotion, or even mental capacities to withstand pressure. Dear friends, OUR strength is a SPIRITUAL strength, from which all other areas where we need strength receive the overflow. 

And how do we become “righteous” before God? How do we find ourselves in “good standing” with The Holy One of Israel? How do we maintain “clean hands” so that we can be stronger and stronger in spirit, and thereby receive from that overflowing strength the power we need to exist and to function at our highest level in this world? 

Before we answer that, let us consider first that OUR righteousness, according to the Bible, is as filthy rags. This means that if we expect OUR righteousness to strengthen us, we will be sadly disappointed. So, how do we become righteous before God? 

To answer the question, we need to look no further than Philippians 3:9, which says, “And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith:” 

In other words, if we will place our faith in Christ, we will be robed in HIS righteousness, and as a result, be clothed in HIS strength! See Isaiah 52:1 for more insight!

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Choose your words wisely!



Today’s Reading: Job 14-16, Acts 9:22-43

Today’s Reflection: Job 16:5 But I would strengthen you with my mouth, and the moving of my lips should asswage your grief.

It speaks volumes of a man’s character to wish his enemies well while they persecute him with their own words. Job here is under assault. As already discussed, they have placed judgement upon him which they had no right or authority to place. 


They assume his guilt before God because of his troubles. Their thoughts are too shallow as it relates to God’s ways. Someone must have incorrectly taught them that when one walks in uprightness of heart, nothing will ever go wrong. And though it is true that God will bless you for serving Him, it is also true that a mixture of trials and tribulations will come on occasion for purposes far greater than our limited understanding or immediate circumstances. 

So, while the super spiritual brethren stand around in the comfort of their blessings, assuming their righteousness because of their good welfare, they forget that God’s goodness comes not because of who we are, but only because of who He is. 

Apparently God has been SO good to them that they allowed self-righteous pride to enter into their hearts, as often is the case for all of us if we don’t keep our hearts in check. Regardless, look at Job’s response. 

While they are slandering him with every “scripture proof” they can throw at him by which to prove his guilt, he says to them in essence that if the tables were turned, and they were the ones in pain, he could just as easily give them the same treatment, but he would choose rather to strengthen them and comfort them with his words. 

All he is asking of them is that they pay him the same respect that he would have paid them. In fact, if I had to guess, I imagine Job to be a man of such integrity and uprightness of heart, that these guys who were giving him a hard time while he was down were probably direct beneficiaries of his goodness and kindness while he was at the top of his game. 

And don’t be surprised if the people who appreciate your contributions today will curse your existence tomorrow when you’re no longer in the same position to bless them. 

However, the lesson we should learn is this; just as Job would speak blessings to his friends when they were down, if given the chance, even so we should bless others with our words, whether they would do the same or not, and especially if they are hurt.


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Standing on the Promises!



Today’s Reading: Job 11-13, Acts 9:1-21

Today’s Reflection: Job 13:18 Behold now, I have ordered my cause; I know that I shall be justified.

Job here, speaking as if he had been put on trial by his self-righteous and misguided friends so as to be found guilty, orders his cause, or in other words, lays out his case before his accusers. 


A careful study of this passage in its entirety would also reveal that Job reminds his friends that they are not telling him anything he doesn’t already know about God. In other words, their words are misapplied to his situation, and therefore empty to him. What they had to say was no help to him, but only brought about more pain and anguish of spirit. 

He was so troubled by their assumption that he was living in sin and therefore was suffering that he, in essence, asked them to just keep their distance and keep their thoughts to themselves (see vs. 21). He even sarcastically chided with them at one point in chapter eleven and said that wisdom would die with them! 

So sharp was the contention between Job and his friends during his trial that in chapter thirteen, verse nineteen, he asks, “Who is he that will plead with me?” In other words, will anyone speak up in my defense, or am I to stand by and for myself? 

In fact, Job is so convinced that he is standing alone in defense of his innocence before God that he goes on to say, “…for now, if I hold my tongue, I shall give up the ghost.” In other words, if it were left up to his friends, he would die without defense, and so he is left with only one option, and that is to speak up for himself. 

Now, a word to the wise; only speak up for yourself when you KNOW you are in the right! Job sets this example for us in that he said, “I know that I shall be justified.” And that is where I want to park my predominant thought for you today; namely, that when you live for The Lord, and maintain your integrity, you can walk in full confidence KNOWING that you SHALL be justified in the end, because God will be your defense! 

Regardless of what comes your way, be it trials of sorrow, sickness, or slander, when you walk with God, you can walk in CONFIDENCE! It may not look like you are winning today, but keep the faith my friend, because your defense is on the way. When you stand up for God, God will stand by you when no one else will! Others may tell you that you earned your troubles, but God knows the truth!



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The Preserving Presence of God



Today’s Reading: Job 8-10, Acts 8:26-40

Today’s Reflection: Job 10:12 Thou hast granted me life and favor, and thy visitation hath preserved my spirit.

Indeed prior to Job’s great trial, he HAD experienced the best that life had to offer. God had blessed him in all he set his hands to. He had not only the double blessing of both life AND favor from God, but also the very visitation of God’s presence which was essential for the preservation of his spirit, enabling him to enjoy his blessings by maintaining the right perspective. 

However, Job soon quickly learned that even when life was not at its best, and when the favor of God he was used to seemingly ceased to be, yet God’s preserving presence sustained his spirit through it all. 

We learn then through Job’s example that with or without health, wealth, and prosperity, we can truly only survive when God visits us and preserves our spirits with His presence and His presence alone! As the old song says, “Without Him, I can do nothing. Without Him, I’d surely fail. Without Him, I would be sailing like a ship without a sail!” 

Often I have found myself in moments of confusion and despair, wondering where God was, for Him simply to say to me, “Here I am!” He is always near! He may not always be felt, and we may not always hear His voice, but we have that promise as children of God that He will never leave us nor forsake us! For this reason, we must declare even in the midst of our trial that “thy visitation hath preserved my spirit.” 

The very fact that you survived and are still alive is a testimony to the fact that God did not abandon you! Sure, it may have gotten very dark and lonely. Sure, you may have felt at times like you were a million miles away from God. But regardless, you are still here! Grace has brought you safe thus far, and yes, Grace WILL lead you home. 

Be encouraged, Child of God! God is not through with you yet. Your troubles did not come to crush you, but to create you. That’s right! God is making a brand new you out of this. You may not see it now, but when you come out of this, you will look back and see God’s handy work all over your situation, and then you will learn what a beautiful work God wrought in your heart and life. 

Even if you have to do it solely on faith alone, without any feeling behind it whatsoever, just make a choice today to rejoice that His presence has preserved you!


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Overcoming Thoughts of Suicide...




Today’s Reading: Job 5-7, Acts 8:1-25

Today’s Reflection: Job 6:11 What is my strength, that I should hope! And what is mine end, that I should prolong my life?

Job, amidst the trial of his life, simply cannot see past the painful circumstances under which he finds himself. Can you relate to his questioning? I believe there are times that we all can relate. First, he looks at his strength, realizes that he has none, and thus sees no reason to hope any more. 

O dear reader, how often do we never look past the abilities of our own strength? How often do we with discouraged hearts simply give up when at last we spend all that we have, only to grow worse off instead of better? I would dare say that this is a common mistake amongst fallen man. 

We, in the weakness of our flesh, seldom look beyond our own strength for hope of a better day. In fact, we might even go on and ask the second question that Job asked, saying in essence, “What’s the use in going on? What’s the use in living?” Do you see it in the way he asked it? “And what is mine end, that I should prolong my life?” 

Basically, Job saw no future past his current trouble. He could not imagine it getting any better, nor could he imagine that life would ever give him any reason beyond his current misery for living on. 
However, I’m glad that this wasn’t the end of the story for Job, and neither is it the end for us! You see, what Job could not see was that his best days were yet ahead! 

So, let’s get this straight; it appears that Job is possibly suicidal. I know, I know, the text does not say that he was contemplating taking his own life, but it does teach us that he wished he were dead. 

In today’s world, the rate of suicide has dramatically increased as people have no present day favorable circumstances, and see no hope of their situation ever changing for the better. However, I need to say this for the benefit of those reading who might themselves be contemplating suicide; never make a permanent mistake because of temporary blindness. 

That’s right. You are suffering from temporary blindness. Just because YOU can’t see your way out, does not mean there IS no way out. Furthermore, if you will call upon the name of The Lord, He promises in Jeremiah 33:3 that He WILL answer you, and show you great and mighty things which you don’t even know! 

Listen, dear friend, call upon Him, then wait for His answer. He WILL respond, and you WILL see a better day!


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Expecting GREAT things!....



Today’s Reading: Job 3-4, Acts 7:44-60

Today’s Reflection: Job 3:25-26 For the thing which I greatly feared is come upon me, and that which I was afraid of is come unto me. I was not in safety, neither had I rest, neither was I quiet; yet trouble came.

Expectation leads to realization. Here, Job admitted that what came upon him was exactly what he feared would come. In fact, he even put himself in harm’s way, lost sleep, and made a fuss over every effort to hedge himself against that for which he was most afraid, and yet, in spite of all of his efforts, trouble still came. 


He was unable to stop that which he fully expected. I want to say that again, and I want to ask you to let it sink in; Job was unable to stop that which he fully expected! 

Now, I can already hear the skeptic of this thought. I can hear one saying, “Oh, but haven’t you ever experienced any unmet expectations? Surely you are not saying that all you must do for things to happen is to expect them to happen!” 

To this thought, I would readily agree that unmet expectations indeed happen every day, and faith is more than just a spirit of expectancy. In fact, James teaches us in the New Testament that faith without works is dead, being alone. No, my friend, expectancy alone does not produce results, but expectancy backed by supportive action steps indeed does produce results every single time.  

That said, look at our text one more time. Job feared that trouble would come. This means that he expected it to come. It was something that he believed. However, he not only had passing thoughts about it, but he actually lost sleep over it, labored against it, and would not shut up about it, attempting to prevent it. 

All of these action steps solidified his belief that trouble was coming, and he ended up getting exactly what he expected and prepared for. 

Now, do I believe that Job was wrong to expect trouble? No! I would even say that he might have been foolish had he not expected it to come. Furthermore, all of the human race should know that you do not have to expect trouble to come in order for it to arrive. 

However, I would say that we can invite specific troubles into our lives depending upon how we labor over them in stress, worry, fear, and preparation for them. 

Now, I said all of that to say this; I propose that we spend more energy expecting, working for, preparing for, and talking about success than we do trouble and failure! Active faith WORKS!


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Untimely Prophets for Unruly People!




Today’s Reading: Job 1-2, Acts 7:22-43

Today’s Reflection: Acts 7:35 This Moses whom they refused, saying, Who made thee a ruler and a judge? The same did God send to be a ruler and a deliverer by the hand of the angel which appeared to him in the bush.

Today, we see an untimely prophet for an unruly people! Seldom does God send the prophet of the people’s choice. In fact, the very nature of the prophet by design is to be a disrupter. 

He is sent to be out of sync with status quo. He is sent to a people who are stubborn and stiff-necked. He is sent as a shepherd to a wandering sheep too foolish to fend for themselves. 

Oh, you say, but how offensive. Precisely! It is meant for you to be shaken by the raw uncut truths uttered by the lips of the God-sent prophet. When God is ready to abruptly awaken His people out of a deep sleep, He does not send those who tread lightly so as to ease you gently into consciousness. 

Rather, He sends one like Moses, rejected 40 years and counting, to the very people who rejected him, as if to say, “Hear him, or hear no one!” Yes, he sends THAT man; that loud, obnoxious, unwavering, rough-around-the-edges ‘John the Baptist’ type, to sound the alarm loud enough to grab not just the attention of your flesh, but more importantly, to awaken your soul. 

So, it is true, dear reader, that we do not get to choose the mouth piece through whom God decides to speak to us. And we had better get used to it! 

Most likely you will not like to hear what he has got to say at first. Most likely, you will even resent his leadership, because he will force you to face your sins, and your need of repentance. Most likely, he will be quicker to convict than to comfort. He does not come to speak words of enticement and entertainment, but words of warning and demands for change. 

He will heighten your awareness to a need for change that you previously didn’t even consider, but are now kept up at night over. If he does not, then he need not be called a prophet at all! 

What kind of preacher is this that we would want? Why, if we had our way, we would not ask for a Moses with a stern focus who would lead us to the Promised Land, but an Aaron who would give us the golden calf of our choice and just let us have it our way.

GOD FORBID! Today, we must learn to appreciate, value, support, listen to, and follow the prophets God sends our way!



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