Call upon the name of the Lord!

August 30, 2016

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

Oh, how I wish I had wings like a dove; then I would fly away and rest! I would fly far away to the quiet of the wilderness. How quickly I would escape—far away from this wild storm of hatred.
(Psalms 55:6-8 (NLT))

Did this passage catch you off guard?

We have a habit of thinking that we, in our current society, are the ones who truly need to get away. We think that our lives are so hectic and full of troubles that no one else could possibly understand what we face. I do admit that things seem to be getting worse as far as the troubles, but in the grand scheme of things, every life in every generation since the fall from grace has had troubles. David was no different than you or I in that respect.

We all want to be able to simply leave the burdens, the troubles of the world behind us and get away to a place where we can just soar above the troubles down below.

It is universally human.

David may not have been able to have wings like a dove and fly away to the quiet of the wilderness, but he did know how to rise above his troubles. He called upon the name of the Lord. He sang praises. He lifted up his voice in song and in prayer. He spent time seeking after God’s own heart. He longed for God and in turn, he knew God and trusted that God would be there.

Can we say the same about our lives?

We all know of the things that David faced in his life, from Goliath to running for his life from Saul, yet in all that he faced, David made time to pray and to praise God. He knew where his hope lie. He knew that he had to constantly seek after that hope by seeking after God. Do you think that Goliath was a mere coincidence? Do you think that David was able to survive Saul’s attempts on his life by luck? David may not have physically flown, but he was guided by the hand of God and was protected by the hand of God because he was faithful.

Take an honest look at your life. Do you see a life of praise, prayer and gratitude or do you see a life that needs to move more in line with how David longed for God?

Copyright 1998 – 2016 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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Are you following your will or God’s?

August 17, 2015

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

“Not everyone who says to me, `Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, `Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, `I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’
(Matthew 7:21-23 (NIV))

Are you following your will or God’s?

Do you know the difference?

Most people may not know that there is a difference. Too many pray for things to happen because it is their will. All too often, when things don’t work out the way that they think they should, they search for another way to make them happen. Is this truly following God’s will or is it following your own will and your own desires?

I know far too many people who seem to beat their heads against the wall with respect to things in their lives. They never see a blessing and they never see encouragement, yet, they still claim to be following God’s will.

Does this sound like your life?

I realize that God is not slow in keeping His promises and the lack of blessings and the lack of encouragement may be God saying that the time is not right. I know that this is a tough call. What do you do in these circumstances? What do you do when you feel that God is calling you into something, yet you are not seeing anything come to fruition?

Look at David. He was called to be king of Israel, yet he faced many years of persecution. The one thing about David that stands out is that he had a personal relationship with God. He longed to know God and he longed for God to know him.

Can you say the same thing?

Are your thoughts in line with God’s thoughts? Are your actions in line with what God is telling you? Perhaps the best way to say this, to cut to the chase, is to look at your priorities. Do you focus on yourself first and then everything that you claim to do for God is only done so that you can receive the accolades of people? God looks at the heart.

What does your heart long for?

Copyright 1998 – 2015 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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Are you a person after God’s own heart?

May 14, 2015

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

To you, O LORD, I lift up my soul;
in you I trust, O my God.
Do not let me be put to shame,
nor let my enemies triumph over me.
No one whose hope is in you
will ever be put to shame,
but they will be put to shame
who are treacherous without excuse.
(Psalms 25:1-3 (NIV))

David was very prolific. We have numerous writings by David and through his writings we can learn something about the man whom possessed a heart after God’s own. He was not ashamed to praise God. He was not ashamed to cry out to God. He was not ashamed to ask God for His protection and His mercy. He was not ashamed to admit when he had sinned.

I wonder what happened to the leaders like this?

The world is in great need of men and women who seek God in all that they do. The world needs people like this in positions of leadership and authority. Sadly, these positions seem to be relegated to those who despise God and all that is righteous. I realize that this last statement was a broad and sweeping generalization, and that there are people like this, but why are their voices silenced? Why does the world ignore them? Why do we not hear of world leaders falling on their knees and asking for God’s guidance, wisdom, strength and mercy?

Sadly, this type of behavior is now looked upon as a sign of weakness and a lack of intelligence. Where are the David’s? Where are the Solomon’s? Where are the people who call upon the name of the Lord?

We can start by having righteous men and women call upon the Lord wherever they are. We can unite in our desires to see God glorified.

I have a question that I want you to think about.

If someone had the ability to look back at your life through your writings, through the words of others and through the impact that you have had on others, would they come to the conclusion that you have a heart after God’s own?

Copyright 1998 – 2015 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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Isn’t it amazing?

December 24, 2014

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

A record of the genealogy of Jesus Christ the son of David, the son of Abraham:
Abraham was the father of Isaac,
Isaac the father of Jacob,
Jacob the father of Judah and his brothers,
Judah the father of Perez and Zerah, whose mother was Tamar,
Perez the father of Hezron,
Hezron the father of Ram,
Ram the father of Amminadab,
Amminadab the father of Nahshon,
Nahshon the father of Salmon,
Salmon the father of Boaz, whose mother was Rahab,
Boaz the father of Obed, whose mother was Ruth,
Obed the father of Jesse,
and Jesse the father of King David.

David was the father of Solomon, whose mother had been Uriah’s wife,
Solomon the father of Rehoboam,
Rehoboam the father of Abijah,
Abijah the father of Asa,
Asa the father of Jehoshaphat,
Jehoshaphat the father of Jehoram,
Jehoram the father of Uzziah,
Uzziah the father of Jotham,
Jotham the father of Ahaz,
Ahaz the father of Hezekiah,
Hezekiah the father of Manasseh,
Manasseh the father of Amon,
Amon the father of Josiah,
and Josiah the father of Jeconiahn and his brothers at the time of the exile to Babylon.
After the exile to Babylon:
Jeconiah was the father of Shealtiel,
Shealtiel the father of Zerubbabel,
Zerubbabel the father of Abiud,
Abiud the father of Eliakim,
Eliakim the father of Azor,
Azor the father of Zadok,
Zadok the father of Akim,
Akim the father of Eliud,
Eliud the father of Eleazar,
Eleazar the father of Matthan,
Matthan the father of Jacob,
and Jacob the father of Joseph, the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus, who is called Christ.

Thus there were fourteen generations in all from Abraham to David, fourteen from David to the exile to Babylon, and fourteen from the exile to the Christ.
(Matthew 1:1-17 (NIV))

It is amazing that we know so much about the genealogy of Jesus. It is amazing that He fulfilled so many prophecies and promises. In all of the generations, it only would take one small issue to have changed God’s plan. It is amazing that it happened at all. It is amazing that we celebrate the birth of our Lord and Savior when you consider that the enemy did not want this to happen.

Be thankful for the amazing birth! Be thankful for God’s amazing plan!

Merry Christmas!

Copyright 1998 – 2014 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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Do you long to be righteous in the eyes of God?

September 5, 2014

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

Have mercy on me, O God,
according to your unfailing love;
according to your great compassion
blot out my transgressions.
Wash away all my iniquity
For I know my transgressions,
and my sin is always before me.
(Psalms 51:1-3 (NIV))

David was a man who was not perfect, yet, he desired righteousness in the eyes of God. He failed time after time in his quest to be righteous. He never gave up. There were times when he turned away from God out of lust or power. When he realized his failings, he was not the type of person who would act like it didn’t happen. He truly repented for his inner desire was to be what God wanted him to be.

Isn’t it interesting how God used a man who fervently desired righteousness but could no attain it. Do you know how God answered David’s prayer?

David asked for mercy and God sent mercy through David’s lineage.

David prayed that all of his iniquity be washed away and it is now possible for every single person’s iniquity to be washed away through the atoning blood of Jesus.

David longed for righteousness, but he could not achieve it on his own. God saw David’s heart and blessed the whole world through David’s lineage. God fulfilled David’s prayer for all who would simply ask and receive.

Have you received the answer to David’s prayer?

What prayer do you pray that God can use to reach others?

Copyright 1998 – 2014 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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Do you despise your sinful actions?

July 15, 2014

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

If we say we have no sin, we are only fooling ourselves and refusing to accept the truth. But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us and to cleanse us from every wrong.
(1 John 1:8-9 (NLT))

Do you still sin?

Too many people falsely believe that after accepting Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior, you somehow stop sinning. Others recognize that they sin, but they believe that it is ok since they have accepted Jesus. There are still others who acknowledge that they sin and constantly seek forgiveness for their sins.

Which group are you in?

Perhaps I should ask which group would others say that you are in? What group would you say that Jesus places you in?

Accepting Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior requires a commitment. It is a relationship that you must work to maintain. Jesus will freely give you grace and salvation, but He looks at the heart. Does your heart rejoice at the thought of Jesus? Do you find yourself giving thanks and praise for the grace that He has given you? Do you find yourself seeking to follow Jesus in all that you do?

Or, do you simply think that you can do whatever you want and then call upon Jesus to rescue you when you get in trouble?

“Not everyone who says to me, `Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, `Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, `I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’
(Matthew 7:21-23 (NIV))

All of us will continue to sin. Jesus looks at the heart. If we earnestly seek Him and desire to leave our sin behind, then we can be considered like David.

After removing Saul, he made David their king. He testified concerning him: `I have found David son of Jesse a man after my own heart; he will do everything I want him to do.’
(Acts 13:22 (NIV))

Do you still sin? Do you despise your sinful actions?

Copyright 1998 – 2014 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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Do you have what the Father is offering?

June 13, 2014

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

`My son,’ the father said, `you are always with me, and everything I have is yours.
(Luke 15:31 (NIV))

We know these words from the story of the prodigal son, but do we truly take them to heart?

Do you proclaim a faith in Jesus? Is it your heart’s desire to be with the Father? Can you be described in a manner similar to David in that you seek to know God’s own heart?

Do you have everything that the Father has?

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires.
(Galatians 5:22-24 (NIV))

The things of the Father are not of this world. The things of this world will rot and rust. The things that the Father has to give are worth far more than anything in this world.

Can the world offer unconditional love?

Can the world offer true peace and joy?

Can the world offer patience and kindness?

What about goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control?

The world can never offer anything close to these. Anything that the world has to offer are simply cheap imitations of the real things. If you don’t believe me, just take a look at the world’s definition of love, or better yet, Google it. I am afraid to think of what it will return if you turn off your search filters.

Do you have what the Father is offering?

Copyright 1998 – 2014 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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