Hosea 10:12 Seek The LORD

Sow righteousness for yourselves, reap the fruit of unfailing love, and break up your unplowed ground; for it is time to seek the LORD, until he comes and showers his righteousness on you. Hosea 10:12

Hosea was describing Israel and how they had been a growing, powerful nation, but had chosen to walk away from God. They chose to follow idols rather than follow God. Now he is telling them that they must start sowing righteousness and love to prepare the way for the Lord’s return. The ground must be broken up. They are to seek God and His righteousness.

When a person has chosen to walk away from God, his heart has become a hardened ground, no longer sowing righteousness or love. Israel had become this way as they chose to do their own thing in rebellion to God. During the time of Israel, all righteousness was based on their own works for God. In the process of refusing to follow God, there would be no righteousness, thus no salvation.

Jesus brought the perfect righteousness to all people and is willing to shower it down on every person who accepts it. In order to accept His righteousness, one must turn from sin and strive to live for God a righteous life. The love that God is pouring out on a person, must be poured out again upon others. One must allow the Holy Spirit to break up the hardness of the heart living in sin, to be able to plant a living heart of flesh in his life.

Change must occur in the heart and life of a person, when he chooses to follow Jesus. The time to choose Jesus is now.

If you are not doing so already, it is time to follow Him with all of your heart. In this way you will be sowing righteousness and reaping the fruit of His unfailing love in your life and towards the lives of others. Jesus is ready to shower down His righteousness and holiness upon you, if you are willing to accept it.

As you seek Jesus, He will be found. Break up the ground of a sinful heart and make it one that is following Jesus. Take time each day to seek Jesus and know what He wants for you. He is coming again, and you do not want to be found not following Him.

I pray today that you will seek Jesus with all of your heart; that you will allow God to give you a heart of flesh; that you will know God’s love for you; that you will accept the righteousness of Jesus in your life; and that you will reap His unfailing love.

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Jeremiah 20:9 A Fire Burning Inside

But if I say, “I will not mention his word or speak anymore in his name,” his word is in my heart like a fire, a fire shut up in my bones. I am weary of holding it in; indeed, I cannot. Jeremiah 20:9

The message God had given Jeremiah to speak to the people was not exactly a comforting message. It was one of doom and destruction for a time. Since that was the message, it was not very well received by the people. Each time he spoke, people would beat him, threaten and ridicule him. It was a very hard message to keep speaking.

At times Jeremiah would get frustrated with the struggle of it and choose not say anything. When he did that, his misery increased all the more. God’s word was so strong in his life, that he felt like it was a fire in his bones and he had to say something, regardless of the outcome.

Every person has times in their life where something happens that is so great that they are bursting to tell someone. Most often it is good news that people want to speak about. Things like a new child on the way, a proposal for marriage, a new large promotion, graduating college, or some other event. When news like this happens, it is so great that the person cannot help but talk about it.

God has a message for you to speak to the world. You may not be a prophet or pastor, or any other ‘titled’ position in the church, but God has a word for you to speak to the world. That message is the gospel message of Jesus.

The world is dying and you have the message to keep them alive. It is, by far, the greatest message the world could ever receive. Not every one will accept it. There will be some who will fight or ridicule you when you speak it, yet, you must speak it.

Do you realize how much God has done for you? Do you realize how much God loves the people of this world?

If you have a full realization of those things, God’s word will burn in your heart to tell others. You will not want to see them condemned to hell, because you chose to be silent.

Let that fire out to shine in this dark world. Don’t be silent.

I pray today that you will know what God has done for you; that you will know God’s love for all people; that God will strengthen you to speak His words; and that God’s word will burn in your heart to be spoken.

Isaiah 66:1-2 Where To Build God’s House?

This is what the LORD says: “Heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool. Where is the house you will build for me? Where will my resting place be? Has not my hand made all these things, and so they came into being?” declares the LORD. Isaiah 66:1

There are times that it is difficult to purchase a person a birthday gift. They seem to have everything that they could possibly want. Looking at wealthy people, this even seems more so. Getting a gift for someone who has all they desire can be quite a challenge. A lot of it will depend upon the heart of the person. What does a person get the person who has everything that they want?

Most people do not have the problem of having so much that there is nothing left to possibly want. Nearly every person can think of several things that they desire. Most of those things will most likely be physical things, while some will also be non-physical things, such as peace, joy, happiness, or health.

One thing that many people will like, but not necessarily ask for is something hand-made or time with that person. This shows something that was made and given from the heart.

God is the one who has made the heavens and the earth. Since He has made everything that exists, He also owns it. Now God is looking for something. He is looking for a place to rest. This shows His heart’s real desire.

As a human being, you may wonder what can you give God, since He owns it all already. God created you to have fellowship with you. He wants to sit down and rest with you. Even though God made everything there is, He wants a place to rest and be still.

The place He desires is in you. It is in your heart and life. God wants to spend time with you. Of all the things that you can give God, this is the only one that God does not already have. God made your heart, but gave it to you. Now it is your turn to give it back to Him.

Allow God to make your heart His temple. This will be the best house and gift God can ever have.

Will you build a house for God today?

I pray today that you will dedicate your heart to God; that God will find a place to rest in your life; that your heart will be a welcome spot for God to live; and that you will know God’s presence in your life.

Isaiah 29:13 Worship By Human Rules

The Lord says: “These people come near to me with their mouth and honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. Their worship of me is based on merely human rules they have been taught.” Isaiah 29:13

Isaiah was prophesying against the people of the city of Jerusalem. When a person looked at them, it appeared as though they worshipped God. God was looking at the heart and said that they honored Him with their lips, but they were only worshipping Him with manmade rules and not from the heart.

Words are something that is easy for a person to speak. Many people will claim to be a real friend of someone, but when that person is in a real need, none of his friends take the time or effort to meet that need. The talk of being a real friend was only lip-service. There was no real meaning to it.

People work and speak in the same way with God. Look around America and it is very easy to find a lot of people who claim to be a follower of Jesus. Yet, as they claim to be a follower, they do not step foot in church, never witness of who He is, and live a life that does not even begin to resemble that of Jesus.

Many do go to church each Sunday to worship God in the physical body. In their hearts they are not really worshipping God. As they are worshipping God in a song, their mind is on the dinner meal or other activities. They are thinking about the game being played that afternoon or what they need to do at work the next day.

The hearts of many are not focused on God at all. They go to church and sing the songs because that is what you are supposed to do, not because they want to do it. It is all based upon man’s rules on how to worship God, not from the heart.

This occurs because most people want to fit in and not be different.

Take time today to focus your heart and mind on God. Find reasons to worship Him from your heart and not just the mind. Break the rules of man on how to worship God and worship Him in a new way from your heart. And live your life in worship of Him.

I pray today that your heart will match your lips in worship of God; that you will know God in a personal way; that you will not fear man’s rules in worshipping God; and that you will be near God with all of your life. 

Psalm 138:1 Praise With Heart

I will praise you, LORD, with all my heart; before the “gods” I will sing your praise. Psalm 138:1

Going through the motions is a common practice of most people. People go to work each day and do the job they are required to do, but most are not excited about going to work. It is just something that they must do. They need money to buy the needed food and pay for the housing, so they must work.

Children go to school each day, because they are forced to go. Most children would not step foot in school if they did not have to do so. Those that would go to school, mainly go to be with their friends, not to learn.

The common thing in these situations are that people are not putting their heart in what they are doing.

Sadly this can often happen in the church. On Sunday mornings during worship, many sing the songs of praise just because that is what they do on Sunday mornings. Even throughout the week a person may be playing music from a Christian radio station, but are just hearing the music, not really listening or worshipping God.

Putting your heart into something means that you are giving it all you have to do it. You are not leaving anything behind.

David said that he would praise God with all of his heart. He was giving God everything he had.

The heart is what pumps the blood through the body. It is what gives the body life.

Each time that you choose to give God some praise, it must be done with all of your heart. Give life to your praise. Do not do it as just another ritual that must be done. Anything that is done as a ritual is dead and lifeless.

Anyone in the world who sees a dead, lifeless praise will not want to be a part of it.

When God hears a dead, lifeless praise coming from a person, He knows it does not mean very much.

How is your praise to God today?

Is it coming from your heart?

Is it alive with excitement and joy?

Or is it just a ritual, that is lifeless and dead?

I pray today that you will be filled with the joy of the Lord; that you will sing praises to God from your heart; that you will put all of your heart into your praise to God; and that you will have a song of praise in your heart all day long.

 

Psalm 119:11 How To Keep From Sin

I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you. Psalm 119:11

The world does not want any person to live any different than the others. Satan and this world does not want anyone to state that there are some solid rules that they must live by. Since this is the case, both Satan and those in the world will strive to get believers to live in the same way they do, living in sin.

Living in sin, or even sinning once in a while, is going against God and His Word. It is ignoring what God has said and placing self on the throne of life.

Those who ignore God’s word live as though they are in control of their own lives. They believe that they know best on how to live life.

The majority of believers know that they are not supposed to sin and strive to not sin against God. However, every believer still struggles with sin. Many wonder why they cannot overcome a sin in their life.

The psalmist gives great insight into how to keep from sinning against God. He states that he hides God’s word in his heart to keep from sinning.

Hiding God’s Word in your heart is memorizing His word. It is not only memorizing His Word, but applying it to your life.

There are people in the world who study the Bible because of its great quality of literature, and they memorize great portions of it, but they do not believe in God and still live, purposefully in sin. They reject what the Bible says for their own lives.

Hiding God’s Word in your heart is taking it to heart and make it a part of your own life.

When you are so focused on God and His Word that you memorize and apply it to your life, you will not allow yourself to be focused on self and sin. God’s Word is alive and will give you strength and direction to turn away from sin, but you must accept it and live by it. God’s Word must be in your heart, a part of your life and blood, what keeps you going.

How do you take God’s Word? Something you must read each day.

Or is it a necessary part of your life, giving you strength to overcome sin?

I pray today that you will know God’s Word better; that you will make God’s Word a part of your life; that you will live by God’s Word; and that God will give you strength to keep from sin.