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The Word For Today

It's never too late for God

'I have seen what they do, but I will heal them anyway!' Isaiah 57:18 NLT

Are you asking, 'Is it too late for God to do something with me?' It's never too late for God! In Scripture we read about broken people God raised up in marvellous ways. He used Moses, a murderer, to deliver the Hebrew slaves. He used Jacob, a liar and a trickster, to fulfil his promise to Abraham. He even included Rahab, a harlot, in the messianic family line. And if God redeemed them, he can redeem you too.

Brokenness should never keep you bound. Rather, it should release you into a life of freedom. A truly broken person understands the reality of John 15:5 (NLT), where Jesus said, 'Apart from me you can do nothing'. A broken person who has learned to depend on God is a force to be reckoned with. When you're looking at a past strewn with failures, it's difficult to see a bright future, just as it's difficult to drive when you're looking in the rear-view mirror. You need to glance in your rear-view mirror occasionally, but if you keep focusing on it you'll end up hurting yourself and others. That's why the windscreen is so much bigger than the rear-view mirror - it shows you where you're heading instead of where you've been!

When you turn to God he will forgive you, restore you and use you for his purposes. He said, 'I have seen what they do, but I will heal them anyway! I will lead them. I will comfort those who mourn, bringing words of praise to their lips' (Isaiah 57:18-19 NLT). The word for today is - it's never too late for God!

Soulfood: Jer 7-9, Luke 3:11-20, Ps 64, Pro 14:25-28


God is training you

'It is for discipline that you endure; God deals with you as with sons.' Hebrews 12:7 NAS

The Hebrew verb for test comes from a word that means 'to take a keen look at, to look, to choose'. Dismiss the notion that God does not see your struggle. On the contrary, he is fully engaged. He sees the needs of tomorrow and, accordingly, uses your circumstances to allow the test of today. Does he not have the authority to do so? He is the potter; we are the clay. He is the shepherd; we are the sheep. He is the gardener; we are the branches. He is the teacher; we are the students. Trust his training. You'll get through this. And remember, all tests are temporary. They are limited in duration. The Bible says, 'In this you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been distressed by various trials' (1 Peter 1:6 NAS).

And here's something else to keep in mind: you can't shorten your testing period, but you can definitely lengthen it by being proud and stubborn, resisting what God wants to teach you. God won't deny you that choice, but neither will he protect you from the consequences of that choice. You wouldn't be the first student who had to repeat a year in school, and you won't be the last. You can go to church on Sunday and pay lip service to God's Word; you can reject the principles of truth and seek the easy way out. But it doesn't work. 'Good understanding gains favour, but the way of the unfaithful is hard' (Proverbs 13:15 NKJV).

Do it God's way, for that's the best way. Always!

Soulfood: Heb 11:23-28, Exo 3:1-22, Exo 33:7-23, Exo 34:29-35


Why study the Bible 3

'That the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.' 2 Timothy 3:17 NAS

Daily Bible study equips you for your God-given assignment in life. Paul writes: 'All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching...reproof...correction...for training in righteousness; so that the man [and woman] of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work' (2 Timothy 3:16-17 NAS).

According to Paul, all Scripture is profitable - but profitable for what? (1) For doctrine and teaching. It will structure your thinking, and that's crucial, because if you're not thinking correctly, you're not living correctly. What you believe ultimately determines how you behave. (2) For reproof. It will tell you where you're out of bounds. Like an umpire who cries, 'Out!' or 'Safe!' the Bible lets you know what's sinful, and what God wants for your life. (3) For correction. Do you have a cupboard in the house where you store all the rubbish you can't find room for anywhere else? You cram it all in, then one day you forget, open the door, and - whoosh! - it all comes out? You say, 'Good night! I'd better clean this thing up!' The Bible is like that; it opens the cupboard doors in your life and provides a purifying dynamic. (4) For training in righteousness. Having corrected us on the negatives, Paul gives us positive guidelines to follow as we go through life. For what reason? 'That the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.'

Have you ever wished your life was more effective for Jesus Christ? And if so, what have you done to prepare yourself? Bible study is a primary means of becoming an effective servant of Jesus Christ. Nothing can take its place!

Soulfood: Jer 4-6, Luke 3:1-10, Ps 59:9-17, Pro 14:23-24

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