Daily Devotions from The Word Of God… From the heart of Ed Algreen

Posts tagged ‘Isaac’

Think about your ‘Marker’

Scripture: Genesis 33-35 

OBSERVATION (What is God saying here?)

14 Jacob set up a stone pillar to mark the place where God had spoken to him. Then he poured wine over it as an offering to God and anointed the pillar with olive oil.15 And Jacob named the place Bethel (which means “house of God”), because God had spoken to him there.   Gen 35:14-15 (NLT)

APPLICATION (How Can I apply what God is saying here to my circumstances today?)

Jacob went to Bethel because he was reminded of how God revealed Himself to him there when he originally escaped from his brother Esau over 20 years earlier. While there the second time, God gave Jacob a new name, Israel, gave him renewed strength to repopulate the land, and gave him much of the land that He (God) had once given to Abraham and Isaac. I got the impression that God was giving Jacob/Israel a new beginning, and telling him “Now go and get busy for me”. We just celebrated the beginning of a New Year. It started much like the old year ended, without much ado. It sure would have been nice to, and probably is not too late to, recommit ourselves to God as His children looking to restart our respective ministries and seek God’s direction for what He would have us do this year with all that He has blessed us with. I believe that if each of us reflect on the blessings that God has showered on us over the past year, then plant a marker to remind us of those blessings, then in all earnest seek to be involved in God’s direction for more successes in 2011, our churches would not be able to contain the overflow of His blessings. I feel like we need to set aside our personal agendas and ‘business as usual’ attitudes, and be willing to let God work mightily through us. We know the awesome spiritual needs of our community, and we believe that we know the God who holds all the answers to all of life’s problems and shortcomings. This is the same God that we, as Christians, have accepted as our King. Let’s let go of our selfish desires and let God perform miracles in and through us, so that His work can be accomplished in our community.   

PRAYER (With God’s help, what am I going to do differently today because He said it?)

Praise be to God for His mighty hand and for all that He does for me each and every day. In being reminded of how You worked in the past dear God, I pray that You will again work in and through me and my church, and the churches of my community. There is no reason for us to have lost people in this community, or sinful acts a part of our neighborhood, for You are more powerful than anything or anyone else that we know. You are bigger than all these problems and challenges that we see, and You hold the keys to the Kingdom of Heaven. I pray that You will find me faithful. I pray that You will find all those that worship You each week around Avon Park, Florida, willing and ready to bow before You, recognize Your Lordship and Your Kingship and that we will get off our personal thrones and allow You to be God, while we, as Your humble servants, stand ready to let You use us to do greater things for the Kingdom than we ever thought possible. May this be a year that we will look on as a ‘marker’ that future generations will come back to spiritually when they want to be reminded of Your power and move on a people and a community. Begin a renewed work in me, dear Lord, is my humble prayer.

Blessings that are showered on Us!

Scripture: Genesis 32

OBSERVATION (What is God saying here?)

9 Then Jacob prayed, “O God of my grandfather Abraham, and God of my father, Isaac—O Lord, you told me, ‘Return to your own land and to your relatives.’ And you promised me, ‘I will treat you kindly.’10 I am not worthy of all the unfailing love and faithfulness you have shown to me, your servant. When I left home and crossed the Jordan River, I owned nothing except a walking stick. Now my household fills two large camps!   Gen 32:9-10 (NLT)

APPLICATION (How Can I apply what God is saying here to my circumstances today?)

Jacob had worked very hard for his father-in-law Laban over the years, and because of his hard work he was rewarded with a lot of livestock. This never went to his head, but at this time when Jacob was worried about the possibility of there being trouble ahead for him, and especially knowing that he was following God’s instructions, he stopped to pray again to God for some reassurance. This was admirable for Jacob to do this, but what caught my attention was the humbleness of his prayer. He felt unworthy of all the blessings that God had showered on him over the years. While I don’t feel like I am anywhere near the humility level of Jacob, I often reflect on the poor around me and wonder in amazement about the ways that God has seen fit to bless me. I am convinced that God is in control and that He loves us so much that if we would only open our hearts to Him and surrender our stubborn selves over to the control of His mighty hand, we will stand back, like Jacob, in amazement and count our blessings and give God the praise that He alone deserves. Whether we live in what some may consider ‘a mansion’ , or whether we live in what some may consider ‘a shack’ let us thank God for His awesome mercy and blessings on our lives. Our pausing to recognize our blessing before God may never be recognized in print like Jacob’s experience was, but what is important is for God to know that our hearts are filled with amazement and thanksgiving for all that He does for us each and every day. Our God is awesome, there is no one like He is!

PRAYER (With God’s help, what am I going to do differently today because He said it?)

Thank You Father for all that You do for me each and every day. I can’t imagine what I must do to deserve Your love, Your protection, Your provision and Your will manifesting itself in and through me. The amazing thing is, that I don’t need to understand all this, but rather just to know that You love me so much that although You sent Your one and only precious Son to die for me, You would go to any extent to continue extending Your love towards me. Thank You for all that You do for me, thank You for providing the means for me to one day worship at Your feet in glory! I have so much to look forward to today and every day because of Your love. Thank You Jesus!

A Very Personal decision

Scripture: Genesis 27-28 

OBSERVATION (What is God saying here?)

13 At the top of the stairway stood the Lord, and he said, “I am the Lord, the God of your grandfather Abraham, and the God of your father, Isaac. The ground you are lying on belongs to you. I am giving it to you and your descendants.14 Your descendants will be as numerous as the dust of the earth! They will spread out in all directions—to the west and the east, to the north and the south. And all the families of the earth will be blessed through you and your descendants.15 What’s more, I am with you, and I will protect you wherever you go. One day I will bring you back to this land. I will not leave you until I have finished giving you everything I have promised you.”  Gen 28:13-15 (NLT)

APPLICATION (How Can I apply what God is saying here to my circumstances today?)

God had blessed Abraham and his son Isaac with so much, yet in this sobering moment for Jacob as he pouted over losing out on the blessing intended for him from his father, God chose to bless Jacob in much the same way that He did for Jacob’s father and grandfather. It wasn’t enough to be the son or grandson of two very blessed, Godly men. Jacob had heard from God directly. This is much the same in our decision to accept Jesus and live in His will. This is something we must do for ourselves. We must individually make a decision to accept Him and serve Him. We cannot ride on the coat tails of our ancestors, for although they may have been very Godly people, it is our decision as to what we will do with Christ, that will decide our ultimate destiny. Please contact me by responding to this post if you would like direction on accepting Jesus as your Lord, or if you would like for me to pray with you about your relationship with the Lord.

PRAYER (With God’s help, what am I going to do differently today because He said it?)

I pray that no one reading this today will go away without settling the relationship between themselves and the Master of the universe, my Lord and my Savior, Jesus Christ. I pray that the importance of this personal decision will be evident and hold more importance and held to a much higher priority than ever before to each one reading this. I pray that decisions will be made today to accept Jesus as Lord, and that He will bless each one with the happiest 2011 as we rest in the peace of knowing our destiny, regardless of what might occur around us this year.

May the God of Peace be evident in Us!

Scripture: Genesis 26 

OBSERVATION (What is God saying here?)

26 One day King Abimelech came from Gerar with his adviser, Ahuzzath, and also Phicol, his army commander.27 “Why have you come here?” Isaac asked. “You obviously hate me, since you kicked me off your land.”28 They replied, “We can plainly see that the Lord is with you. So we want to enter into a sworn treaty with you. Let’s make a covenant.29 Swear that you will not harm us, just as we have never troubled you. We have always treated you well, and we sent you away from us in peace. And now look how the Lord has blessed you!”30 So Isaac prepared a covenant feast to celebrate the treaty, and they ate and drank together.31 Early the next morning, they each took a solemn oath not to interfere with each other. Then Isaac sent them home again, and they left him in peace. Gen 26:26-31 (NLT)

APPLICATION (How Can I apply what God is saying here to my circumstances today?)

I’m sure that sometimes God must look at us in dismay and say, why are you being such a brat and acting this way, refusing to accept this person in love through faith in Me? After all didn’t I give you what you have to use for my glory, and isn’t this person approaching you with a peaceful intention? So often I’m afraid that we tend to feel like we are especially blessed by God and since our little feelings were hurt, why should we then share our blessings with the same person that forced us into a challenging corner in the first place. This lesson from Isaac shows me that even the same king that kicked him off his property and out of his town, which I’m sure must have created quite a stir for Isaac’s camp, yet Isaac accepted the king with open arms and in peace, agreeing to a treaty proposed by the king. What a lesson to learn here! Hopefully we will be called into a situation where we could make the difference between peace and separation; showing God’s love through our actions, rather than allowing Satan to take credit for the way that we respond to such peace offerings. May this be a year filled with God’s love expressed through us in ways that will shock Satan and his cohorts. May God win the battles though His people and may He receive glory for all that is accomplished in His name!

PRAYER (With God’s help, what am I going to do differently today because He said it?)

Lord Jesus, there are situations and scenarios in our lives that require Your power in our lives to help us make right and peaceful decisions. I believe that You are the same God today that You were when You helped Isaac overcome the challenging decisions he had to make when approached by the king. I believe that You can, and will honor our call for peaceful resolutions and treaties so that You may be honored and receive glory for the miraculous decisions that we make. Please help me to always think primarily like You would and then depend wholeheartedly on You for power to overcome the forces of this world and Satan. May the victories and/or peaceful resolutions that occur this year through my life, and those for which I may influence through my church, bring You glory and be a visible display of Your power to a lost world.

Oh, for the faith of our forefathers

Scripture: Genesis 23 

OBSERVATION (What is God saying here?)

6 “No!” Abraham responded. “Be careful never to take my son there.7 For the Lord, the God of heaven, who took me from my father’s house and my native land, solemnly promised to give this land to my descendants. He will send his angel ahead of you, and he will see to it that you find a wife there for my son.8 If she is unwilling to come back with you, then you are free from this oath of mine. But under no circumstances are you to take my son there.” Gen 24:6-8 (NLT)

14 This is my request. I will ask one of them, ‘Please give me a drink from your jug.’ If she says, ‘Yes, have a drink, and I will water your camels, too!’—let her be the one you have selected as Isaac’s wife. This is how I will know that you have shown unfailing love to my master.” Gen 24:14 (NLT)

APPLICATION (How Can I apply what God is saying here to my circumstances today?)

This is a pretty amazing chapter to read on the faith of our forefathers, wow! Abraham heard from God on who his son Isaac should marry, and who he shouldn’t marry, and where exactly Isaac should settle down at. So he sent his servant to look for a wife for Isaac so that Isaac wouldn’t be tempted to stay in the destination that Abraham was convinced his wife would come from. Abraham was convinced of his actions and followed through with them in faith believing God. It seems like his servant left for the journey a little hesitant, but yet willing to follow the orders of his master. Surely there must have been a degree of assurance based on the many times he had seen Abraham’s faith in action before. It was interesting to see the servant also bow before God with his own requests for this awesome task assigned to him by his master. It was also amazing to see how God answered the prayers of Abraham and his servant and then to see how pleased Isaac was with his new wife that was picked for him. This has once again reminded me of how awesome my God is, and how He will come through for us as we pray in faith, and as we follow His will obediently.

PRAYER (With God’s help, what am I going to do differently today because He said it?)

Lord please help me to never question You and Your will for my life. My problems are extremely minor in comparison to the awesome tasks that I read about in this chapter today. Please help me to draw so close to You that I will know Your will for my life and that I will seek with all that I have to follow Your commands, Your Word and ultimately, Your direction for my life and for those that I influence and have responsibility. You are all powerful, and not only have You made everything around me, but You have everything under Your control. Thank You Father for that assurance, and for loving and caring for me enough to want to see the very best for me. My desire is to follow Your will for my life. I pray that my faith will be strengthened each and every day that I walk alongside of You!

Obedience that shows our fear of god

Scripture: Genesis 22 

OBSERVATION (What is God saying here?)

12 “Don’t lay a hand on the boy!” the angel said. “Do not hurt him in any way, for now I know that you truly fear God. You have not withheld from me even your son, your only son.”13 Then Abraham looked up and saw a ram caught by its horns in a thicket. So he took the ram and sacrificed it as a burnt offering in place of his son.14 Abraham named the place Yahweh-Yireh (which means “the Lord will provide”). To this day, people still use that name as a proverb: “On the mountain of the Lord it will be provided.”  Gen 22:12-14 (NLT)

APPLICATION (How Can I apply what God is saying here to my circumstances today?)

Abraham had been an outstanding child of God up to this point, obeying God’s every command and doing what he thought would please God. Yet in verse 1 of this chapter we are told that God tested his faith, and oh what a test! He commanded Abraham to sacrifice his dearly loved son, Isaac. The scripture shares nothing about Abraham questioning God or trying to make any deal with God, he simply followed God’s instructions. Because of his obedience, God intervened and saved Abraham from such a sacrifice. I wonder if we, or if I am obedient enough to God’s instructions that I would do whatever He asked me to do, and secondly, am I obedient enough for God to say, OK you have proven that you truly fear Me. In my opinion, this is the ultimate proof of our love for God and our obedience to Him, when we are willing to follow what He tells us to do no matter what. God loves us so much that He willingly sacrificed His Son, Jesus, and He didn’t hesitate and withdraw at the last moment, like He allowed in the case of Abraham and Isaac. So lessons learned here tells me that God loves me so much that He sacrificed it all. He also loves us so much that He would be willing to step in and save the day for us, His children, when we prove to Him that we truly love and fear Him. Perhaps we will be blessed enough to name the place where we recognized God’s miracle in our life, much like Abraham did in the case of ‘Yahweh-Yireh’!

PRAYER (With God’s help, what am I going to do differently today because He said it?)

The kind of love that You extend to me is way beyond human comprehension, O Lord. You have shown in Your Word just how loving and kind You were to those before me, and I have every reason to believe that You love me equally as much. May I be bold enough, obedient enough, honest enough and committed enough to show my love and respect in all that You command of me. Abraham was obedient even to the extent that he was willing to sacrifice his greatly loved son. May I be obedient to Your voice today dear God!

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