Wednesday, November 4, 2015

November 5, 2015

"And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to Him must believe that He exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek Him." Hebrews 11:6

God makes it very clear what pleases Him. 

Faith pleases Him!

Do you want to please Him?

Last Sunday I described how faith operates. Faith believes the best predictor of what God can do is knowing what He has already done (His credentials). And faith believes God is still the same now as He was then (His character). Faith believes in God's credentials and in God's character and factors it forward by believing He is capable of doing anything He wants done today! 

That is what the Heroes of Faith did! That's how they pleased God.

When Abraham was confronted with what sound like an impossible challenge he surely looked around at the majesty of God's creation and thought, "If God can do that, He can do this!"

When Noah was called to build something he had never built (a ship) to prepare for something he had never seen (rain) he surely thought, "If God can do that (creation), then he can help me do this!"

When Moses stood at the Red Sea with the command to trust God to deliver him and God's people Moses had to factor, "If God can speak through a burning bush, and if God can use supernatural plagues to defeat Pharaoh then He can do this!" 

So, when life threatens you with overwhelming circumstances you know what to do! Follow the example of these Faith Heroes and remember what God has already done! Then you can factor it forward! "If God saved me from sin, He can do this!" or, "If God can raise Jesus from the dead, He can do this!" 

The best predictor of what God can do for you is what He has already done! Factor faith forward! 

When you believe in His credentials and trust in His character you can believe He is capable to meet your need!

That  will please Him!

November 4, 2015

"the sounds of joy and gladness, the voices of bride and bridegroom, and the voices of those who bring thank offerings to the house of the LORD, saying, "Give thanks to the LORD Almighty, for the LORD is good; his love endures forever." For I will restore the fortunes of the land as they were before,' says the LORD." Jeremiah 33:11

Thankful people are happy people. There is no debating that.

But, the question is, "Are they happy because they are thankful or are they thankful because they are happy?"

Jeremiah gives us some insights into what it takes to become a thankful person.

First, be thankful for the goodness of God!

You have a choice. You can focus on the badness and unfairness of life, OR you can focus your life on the goodness of God. It is up to you. If you want to be sad and miserable all the time you can decry how unfair life is - because it is! Choose that disposition and your happy days will be few and far between.

However, if you are committed to the goodness of God you can ALWAYS be thankful because God is ALWAYS good! Thankful people understand that God is always better than the badness of life. God is bigger than the badness of life. In fact, God has promised to even make the badness of life into goodness!

Thankful people are focused on the goodness of God! They are always thankful because they understand that God is always good.

Secondly, thankful people are focused on the love of God.

Like the goodness of God, His love is a constant. Therefore, when you choose to be thankful for His love you can always be thankful! His love that sustained you through the unfairness and difficulties of yesterday will also sustain you through today - and tomorrow! Thank God! When Jeremiah wrote these truisms thousands of years ago, God's love was a constant. Now, centuries later, it is still true! And, centuries from now IT WILL STILL BE TRUE. How can you not be thankful for THAT!

Will you do this for God and for yourself today? Will you thank Him for His goodness and His love. Thank Him that these blessed characteristics are rooted in His eternal character! Will you make today the first day of a commitment to live in thankfulness for His goodness and His love?

You will be thankful you made that decision!