Friday 11 August, 2017

To help two people come together and resolve their differences, as Paul the apostle does for Onesimus and his master, can be a huge challenge, but it is something that I am striving to improve in my ability to do.

If each of us took steps to ensure the relational health of those around us was upheld, I wonder if the world would he a better place.

Relational health isn’t really something that gets talked about much. Sure, people who are psychologically and emotionally healthy will generally be better in relationships, but if I just look after myself, it will certainly not guarantee that I will automatically relate well to others. It is a skill I need to learn, and one where the support of others can help me do well.

Thank you Lord that you have made us to be relational and to live in relationship with you and with people. Help us to care for one another so that relational health can be developed across our community to make the world a better place.

Written by Ps. Justin Ware 

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Thursday 10 August, 2017

V6 says – And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns. (NLT)

This is perhaps one of my favourite verses in the whole bible. It encourages me to know that God is at work in my life. God began the good work. God will finish the good work, and promises that there is coming a day when Christ Jesus will return.

Encouraging stuff.

But the hardest word in this verse is – continue.

Because it means that God is not finished yet, in fact he won’t be finished until the day that Jesus returns. Then and only then will we be made perfect.

Sometimes I wish that God would just finish his work, now.

Some days it’s two steps forward, other days it’s three steps back.

But these are all part of Gods plan and purpose to work things out in my life. It’s not enough to hear or read about what God will do in my life, I have to live it.

But the hope I have in this verse is also in that word continue. It tells me that God won’t give up on me. And that has everything to do with his love for me and nothing to do with my ability or progress.

Thank you God for not giving up on me.   Please, continue.

Written by Andrew Martin

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Wednesday 9 August, 2017

What a great Psalm! The king prays for himself to lead in justice and righteousness, for his land to be plentiful and peaceful and for his people to be prosperous. The poor, the weak & the needy are particularly on his heart. Who would not want to serve this king? Jesus is so clearly reflected in this psalm (a messianic psalm), His sovereignty, His righteousness, justice, deliverance, redemption, love and freedom.

Who would not want to worship Him?

Lord Jesus, today I again affirm my heart for you. You are all these things and so much more & I choose to serve you, for you alone are a “Wonder-working God” (Message).

Written by Suzie Hodgson

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Tuesday 8 August, 2017

I love the slogan of Hope 103.2 FM – “There is always hope!”

It could have been taken from v 14 of this powerful psalm.

It seems the writer is feeling under siege – vs 10-11,13. This is something I can relate to. When things aren’t going right, when things in my world are beyond my control, no matter what I do there is no change.

This psalm is for all of us who feel like this. There is always hope.

The images with which the psalmist writes of hope powerfully convey the depth of its meaning. One is the rock, also translated as bedrock in the Message version (v5). What is bedrock? It’s solid or undisturbed rock and is also under the sea floor. It’s hard rock such as granite or sandstone, which resists erosion. To the psalmist, God is his bedrock because he has always been with him, even from his birth. He reflects back on this special relationship, which has continued throughout his life, and is characterised by caring, reliance, praise, love, hope. How does my relationship with God measure up?

The Message translates v14 this way – “I stretch out, reaching for you.” Instead of being weighed down by our “accusers” we hope in God. The image of stretching and reaching reminds me of rock climbing, clinging to a solid wall of rock, reaching for the next hand hold, balancing on my feet, arms crying out for relief. Our hope is active, not a feeling. The difficulties we encounter are like gravity to the rock climber – they can pull us away from reliance on God, like gravity pulls the climber off the rock face. We have to train (by praising, praying and trusting our righteous God) to keep the relationship strong. And our God will raise us up, bringing restoration and honour.

Thank you dear heavenly Father for caring so much for me, from even before I was born right up to today. Amen

Written by Claire Moore

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Monday 7 August, 2017

As I pause and take notice of the psalmist’s style of writing, I cannot help but see a lack of polite trimmings. There is no please or thank you, no ‘God if it is not too inconvenient…’. The psalmist clearly has a history with God, a relationship built over time, such that there is no need for polite custom. The writer is in need, and he cries out honestly to God for help. There is no hiding of the request in conversation about the weather or general chit chat. The psalmist owns their need and states their dependence on God. There is no back-up plan, this is serious and God must come through for the writer.

Am I this bold in talking to God and requesting help? Do I quickly own my need or do I hesitate and try to cover over my insufficiency?

God, help me to recognise my limits and be quick to call for your aid. Where I get caught in polite trimmings or what I ‘should’ say, open my eyes and teach me to keep it simple. Thank you that you respond to me because I’m your child, and not because I pray the ‘right’ prayers. Amen.

Written by Bethany Waugh

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Sunday 6 August, 2017

I just love the way David is able to express his emotional state with imagery. I picture him drowning in quick sand. He is up to his neck, exhausted, parched and overwhelmed.

David does not doubt God’s unfailing love and mercy and power to save him. With his mind on this he says in v.30-31: THEN I will praise His Name with singing and honour Him with thanksgiving, because this pleases Him more than ritual sacrifice. He longs to see God glorified to his people.

This pattern here of complaint, expression of faith and anticipation of praise and thanks giving for deliverance is one which I want to use in my times of trouble. Anticipation of Gods glorious saving grace.

Dear Lord when I am drowning please help me to look UP to you. And when I can’t do it on my own then please bring me back to this psalm, to pray it with David. Amen.

Written by Dimity Milne

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Saturday 5 August, 2017

This Psalm portrays the position of those in Gods favor, and those whom are enemies, and how the psalmist wants to see God destroy them. But as we read this today, what is there to digest personally?

For me it is the verses 32-34……

“Sing to God, O kingdoms of the earth, 

sing praise to the Lord, 

to him who rides the ancient skies above, 

who thunders with mighty voice. 

Proclaim the power of God, 

whose majesty is over Israel, 

whose power is in the skies.” 

This is a call to sing to our God and proclaim his power, and to revere his might. I think often we can tend to dilute God, or consider his power only as our feeble minds allow. But the greatest display of his power and might is in the creation of the skies above. I love how the great preacher Louie Giglio tries to give us some comprehension of the enormity of the universe, with stars that are trillion times larger than our planet, and exist thousands of light years away, and yet were created by the very word of God. (Ps33:6). He spoke, and they were birthed. Now that is power!  To proclaim this means to announce, or publicly declare his power. That is what I need to digest for today.

Lord, help me to marvel at your majestic creation of the skies above, to sing praise to You and to proclaim, and speak of Your great power to others.

Written by Steve Fell

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Friday 4 August, 2017

It’s amazing what a difference one word can make. “Then…” v6. Such a simple word yet so important. It links the promise with how to get the promise. It shows that praise precedes blessing.

But there is so much more to it than that. Verse 2 talks about God’s saving power and that this salvation is available to everyone – not just to Jewish people. That’s the reason for the praise. It’s Jesus Himself. He is the “how” – how God has redeemed us and rescued us. But not just us – all of creation, all of the earth, everything that was under sin’s curse (see Colossians 1:20). Jesus died and rose from the dead and rescued everything! And as if that wasn’t enough, when we respond to this audacious grace with faith and praise the blessings from God continue to flow.

Oh God of grace and mercy, thank you for Jesus. My savour and redeemer of everything. I fall to my knees and give You praise.   Amen

Written by Boudy Van Noppen

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Thursday 3 August, 2017

This psalm is a persistent call to action – so many verbs!… Shout (for joy), Sing (of His name), Make (His praise glorious), Say (to God that He is awesome), Come and See (what God has done), Praise (our God), Come (to His temple), Come and Hear (what God has done), Cry (out to Him).

Strong, healthy relationships are built on mutual involvement. It’s easy to grow passive in our relationship with God from time to time, and end up taking Him for granted. This psalm is a good reminder of the need to be verbal in our praise of God and proactive in our seeking Him day by day – not just on Sunday in church.

Today as I write this, I am taking just a few minutes out of the busyness of life to listen to worship music, spend time focusing on God and worshiping Him. So needed and so good for the soul!

Father God, I thank You that You love to hear from Your people, that You incline Your hear to listen. Help me to remember You in my everyday life and not take for granted the awesome privilege it is to speak with You.

Written by Shelley Witt

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Wednesday 2 August, 2017

I have been challenged to expand my thinking in the area of faith. Faith is a big part of being an effective leader. A person of faith sees the promises of God that have not yet been fulfilled, and can see as if it has already happened. Then they keep persevering in prayer until it comes to pass.

In Psalm 65, David is speaking (actually, singing) out his faith in the goodness of God and for what is to yet to come. He sings praise for answered prayer, for forgiveness, for salvation for all people, and for abundant provision. David is singing out his faith in what God will do, as well as being thankful for what He has already done.

It’s so easy to get stuck focusing on what our natural eyes can see – difficult circumstances and challenges, and not lift our eyes to see in faith what God will do. May I be a person of faith and one who will not give up praying until God’s purposes come to pass.

Written by Shelley Witt

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  1. Claire Moore says:

    I love your description of a person of Faith! Knowing God’s promises, expecting their fulfilment in our lives, and acting accordingly, relying on God. Thank you

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