Psalm 134:2 Lifting Hands To Praise

Lift up your hands in the sanctuary and praise the LORD. Psalm 134:2

Lifting up hands towards another person is something that people do all over the world. Most often it is done in honor or praise of the other person. Watch people at a football or soccer game when their team makes a great score. They start shouting and waving their hands and arms through the air for victory. They are excited and not afraid to show it.

While there are many raising hands in victory, there are some who are raising their hands in surrender. War is occurring in many countries. When the enemy comes in, there are some who raise their hands in surrender to the enemy to keep from being killed or harmed.

This type of surrender also occurs when a policeman begins to capture a crook. People will raise their hands to show the policeman that they are unarmed and willing to surrender.

Another reason hands are lifted is seen in a child. The child raises his hands to his father to be reached out to and loved. Hands are raised to be picked up and hugged.

Believers have the greatest reason in the world to be raising their hands. At a minimum they can raise their hands in surrender to the King of kings, Jesus. In order to follow Jesus, a person must give up his own personal will and desire. He must surrender his way of doing things to do the things God wants him to do.

Once a believer has surrendered his life to God, he can then raise his hands in victory to God, giving God praise for what He has done. Praise can be shouted out to God with raised hands.

He an also raise his hands to God seeking God to hold him and give him a hug. Raised hands will allow God to show His love to the person.

Many in the church do not raise their hands in public for fear of what others may think. Yet, look at what God has done in your life. He was not ashamed to reach down to you. Reach up to Him and receive what He has for you. Reach out to Him and give Him the praise that is due to Him.

God wants to give you a great big loving hug. Are you willing to let Him do it?

Give God praise today.

I pray today that you will have reason to praise God; that you will not fear raising your hands to God; that you will surrender your will to God; and that you will raise your hands in praise to God.

Psalm 128:1 Blessed In Fear And Obedience

Blessed are all who fear the LORD, who walk in obedience to him. Psalm 128:1

Fear and obedience are two things that many people do not see associated with blessings. Yet the psalmist says that the one who fears and the one who is obedient is blessed.

Fear is often associated with being scared, not respect. There are many people in the world who fear God, because they fear that He will not accept them because of their past sins. Christians often fall into this same type of fear of God. They fear God no longer loves them because they fell back into some sin again. The weight of judgement against them weighs heavily on their minds.

This is not the fear the psalmist was talking about. Fear, here, is the respect and reverence for God. It is allowing God to be God and absolutely ruler over one’s life.

Obedience is seen as something that one must do, not a privilege to do. Throughout the world, many people obey the laws, only because they have to. The rules are obeyed only out of fear of getting caught. This also is often seen in the church. The heart is not in the obedience.

When a believer realizes what Jesus has done for him and how much God loves him, he will want to obey God. It will be a choice, not a requirement.

When you obey God out of fear, you are constantly on the outlook for when God is going to strike you. In that way, there is no real peace or loving relationship with God.

The blessings in fearing and obeying God is found in the relationship that is built up through the obedience. The level of trust in God is built up as you fear and obey Him. Knowing that there is peace between you and God rises when you know you are living for God with the right mindset.

Having that right relationship with God removes fear of judgement or reprimand. You will know the grace and mercy God has for you. In the midst of trouble in this life, you will still have God’s peace and love in your life. What better blessing can there be than that?

I pray today that you will know God’s love for you; that you will know God’s mercy for you; that you will have the proper fear and respect for God; that God will strengthen you in your obedience to Him; and that you will know all the blessings God has for you.

Psalm 120:7 Seeking Peace, Finding War

I am for peace; but when I speak, they are for war. Psalm 120:7

All over the world most people desire to have peace instead of war. Battles are being fought daily in many different nations. People fight others for many different reasons, even though there are many who would love to have peace.

Believers should be seeking peace also, even though they are in the midst of a battle for their lives. The peace that should be sought out, is not the peace that the world thinks of. This peace is the peace that comes between them and God. It is an inner peace that overcomes everything.

As the believer seeks to present that peace to those in the world, the devil rises up in opposition and seeks to make war with him. The peace that the believer is trying to make is peace between God and man. The world does not accept God and does not want that type of peace. This is where the war is brought about.

In order for a believer to present God’s type of peace, he must show love, compassion, and mercy to those in the world. Not every believer shows these attributes of God to the world.

It is common to hear Christians bashing non-believers, condemning them to hell, and showing hatred. The words that many speak are not the true words of God. Yes, God hates the sin, but He does love the sinner.

As Jesus walked on the earth, He spoke of the peace of God and showed love, mercy and compassion. Yet, the world made war with Him and crucified Him. You will have it no differently.

As you go through your days, you need to be showing the world the peace that God can and will offer. Show the peace that comes through knowing Jesus as Lord and Savior. While there will be some who will accept the message you bring, there will be some who will make war with you.

Do not give up when there is war against you. Put on the armor of God and stand your ground, not seeking to fight and condemn, but fight to show God’s true love to this fallen world. You are in a battle for your soul and the souls of other people.

Are you seeking peace?

Or just seeking to fight in a war?

I pray today that you will know the peace of God; that you will present God’s peace to the world; that God will strengthen you in the battles that will come; and that you will be an example of God’s love to the world.

Psalm 119:136 Tears Over Disobedience

Streams of tears flow from my eyes, for your law is not obeyed. Psalm 119:136

Even though the world has many rules and regulations for people to follow, many still accept on disobedience. Most will not accept disobedience against themselves, but yet will be disobedient to someone else. Everyone wants to be obeyed, but many do not want to obey.

The word “disobedience” is changed to “it is my right” or “it is my freedom.” People do not like to be told what to do. With that disobedience reigns in this world.

Christians often look at the disobedience and sin in this world and get angry. They cry out for laws to be made to stop the sin. They run people out who live in disobedience. People are shunned and kicked out of churches for disobedience. Protests are set up to go against those who are doing wrong.

In all of these actions, there is one element missing…God’s love. Striking out in anger against someone or a group is not showing the love God showed by sending His Son Jesus to die on the cross. It is not letting the people know that there is a better way.

When there are tears from weeping, there can be no anger. Tears are a sign of sorrow and sadness, not anger.

Jesus had wept over Jerusalem because of their sin and what they were doing wrong. He did not get angry with them. His heart was broken with sadness.

It is easy to allow anger to rise up, to allow for vengeance, and be vindictive when you see disobedience occurring. It is easy to allow someone to be brought to justice for disobedience.

Instead it takes being at the center of God’s heart to see the sin and disobedience and have your heart broken.

This is not only seeing the disobedience in others, but also in yourself. It is easy to see it in others, but how many times have you been disobedient? How many rules, both man and God’s, have you broken?

Take time to see people as God sees them. See that they are broken and need a Savior, not judgement. Weep over what they are doing wrong and seek God to touch their lives.

Weep over what you may be doing wrong and ask God to help you change. Weep instead of getting angry.

I pray today that you will see disobedience as God does; that you will feel God’s sorrow instead of anger; that you will seek to show God’s love to the disobedient; and that you will obey all of God’s commands.

Psalm 109:26 According To His Love

Help me, LORD my God; save me according to your unfailing love. Psalm 109:26

David had many enemies trying to attack him and destroy him. They were saying false things about him in an attempt to bring him to ruin. He cries out to God for help. The first part of this psalm is David requesting God to strike his enemies. In this verse, he talks about needing God to save him according to His great love.

David never saw himself as that great of a person. He knew his faults and failures. Here He calls on God to help him according to His unfailing love. David knew that God loved with perfect endless love. It was on that great love that David is calling for help.

When a person is having a hard time and needs help, there are some who will call to others to assist him. Often when this is done, they talk about how good the person is or how much that person has done and deserves some help. Their focus is always on how good that person is.

Prayers are often asked in this same way in the church. Praying that God will meet the need of a person because of all the good he had done or for how long he has served God.

God meeting needs of people has nothing to do with the love the person has for God. It has to do with His love and His love alone.

Many people feel that they have to earn God’s love and earn His help. There is nothing that you can do to make God love you more. And there is nothing you can do to make God love you any less. His love is constant, perfect and eternal.

You are saved from sin because of His love for you. He will also meet your needs, whatever they are, because of His great love for you.

As you pray to God for needs to be met, worship Him and ask Him to meet the need according to His love for you. In this way, your need will be met in the perfect way, not just your temporary way.

Trust God’s love to save you, not your works.

I pray today that you will know God’s love for you; that you will not try to earn your salvation or needs being met; that your focus will be on God more than your needs; and that you will worship God with all your heart.

 

Psalm 103:8 Slow To Anger And Full Of Love

The LORD is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love. Psalm 103:8

The world tries to point God out as one who is extremely strict and harsh on people. Viewing the various rules God laid out, many believe that God is out to get them or cause them to make mistakes.

In current times, many claim that God must be a hater because He does not allow a person to live any way that person wants to live. God restricts a person’s freedom, so He is not very caring.

Others will say God must not be compassionate because He allowed some loved one to get sick or to die. God as seen by many, just like a human, with human faults.

Sadly, many believers fall into these ways of thinking. A believer makes a mistake in his life and sins against God. Then the person feels as though he had committed the unpardonable sin and cannot go back to God for forgiveness, because he has already repented many times for the same sin.

Some believers will live trying to follow all the rules of God out of the fear of God that He will strike them dead for breaking a rule.

God is not sitting up in heaven looking down at you waiting for you to sin. He does not have a club that He is waiting to hit you with on the head because you sinned against Him.

He is waiting up in heaven watching for you to turn to Him and trust Him. God wants you to ask Him for help. He understands your humanity. Remember He made you, and Jesus was fully human also.

Jesus is sitting in heaven interceding for you on your behalf. God loves you with an everlasting love. Unlike humans, He does not get angry quickly. If God got angry as quickly as most people do, no one would be alive today.

God is there for you and works with you where you are at. All you need to do is follow Him and trust Him. Let God’s Holy Spirit guide you in how to live your life. Love God with all of your heart and it will be easy to turn from sin. Lean on His compassion, love and grace.

I pray today that you will know God’s love for you; that you will know God’s compassion for you; that you will know God’s grace towards you; and that you will live for God in all that you do.

Psalm 97:10 Love And Hate

Let those who love the LORD hate evil, for he guards the lives of his faithful ones and delivers them from the hand of the wicked. Psalm 97:10

Two things that are commonly talked about by many people are love and hate. Non-believers are very quick to tell believers that they are to show love and not hate. Most believers will agree with them in that they should not show any hate towards any person.

Jesus had said that believers are to love their enemies. So the statement of loving people is true and strong.

The world interprets some things as hate, when in reality it is love. If a believer speaks out against a sin or hates some type of sin, it is automatically interpreted that he hates the person. Hating sin has nothing to do with whether a person loves another person or not.

The psalmist said that anyone who loves God, must hate evil. All evil is sin and all sin is evil.

The challenge many believers have is what they call evil. Generally people think of evil as extreme horrible sins, such as murder, rape, extreme violence, and other ‘major’ sins.

God calls all sin evil. Right alongside of murder is also telling lies, gossip, jealousy, pride, and many other ‘little’ sins. All of these are also evil.

Believers must not hate any person, and many are guilty of that, but they must hate the actions and evil. You must hate evil so much that you turn away from it. Do not look on it, do not think about it, do not touch it.

God is pure and holy and cannot be around any sin or evil at all. Jesus was the perfect image of God and you were called to be just like Jesus. You are to live your life in a way that you run away from evil. Do not allow yourself to take part in any type of evil, no matter how large or small it is.

Where do you sit with evil?

Do you overlook small sins?

Or do you run from all sin?

I pray today that you will love God with all of your heart; that you will hate sin as God hates sin; that you will love people as God loves people; and that your life will be like that of Jesus.