31, January 2012

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In Spite of Yourself

‘…The Good Shepherd…lays down His…life for the sheep.’ John 10:11 AMP

There are two ways in which we are like sheep: (1) Without a shepherd to guide us, we get into stuff that hurts us. God has no ‘super-sheep’. The Bible says: ‘All of us, like sheep, have strayed…We have left God’s paths to follow our own…’ (Isaiah 53:6 NLT) Like sheep, sometimes we are clueless and headstrong, choosing things that turn out badly unless God intervenes. (2) Sheep arent smart enough to hide their shortcomings. Indeed, their willingness to be what they are is one of their strengths. FB Meyer said, ‘I used to think God’s gifts were on shelves, one above the other, and the taller we grew the more easily we could reach them. I now find they’re on shelves, one beneath the other, and it’s not a question of growing taller but stooping lower.’ Solomon said, ‘…with humility comes wisdom.’ (Proverbs 11:2 NLT) Since God already knows everything about you, why bother pretending? Plus, the things you refuse to acknowledge and deal with just stunt your growth and limit your usefulness to God. That’s too high a price to pay! God values truth and He expects you to be truthful with Him, other people and yourself. Paul writes: ‘…express truth [in all things, speaking truly, dealing truly, living truly]…’ (Ephesians 4:15 AMP) And James adds: ‘Confess your [faults] one to another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed…’ (James 5:16 NKJV) We all have our pluses and minuses. But when you give God all that you are (and aren’t!), He will bless and use you in spite of yourself.

SoulFood: Phil 1-4, Matt 11:20-30, Ps 107:17-22, Pr 3:21-24

The Word for Today is authored by Bob and Debby Gass and published under licence from UCB International Copyright 2012

31, January 2012

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