Day 171

“The wicked have waited for me to destroy me: but I will consider thy testimonies.”  Psalms 119:95

Today’s verse probably resonates with a lot of us.  Many of you can think of a time in your life when you knew someone was out to destroy you.

Not very good memories are they?

The psalmist has just asked God to save him in verse 94, now we are given a little more information as to why he needed saving.  He saw his enemies gathered together, waiting to take him down.  He was plodding along, trying to trust in God’s Word and now trouble comes in human form.

This past Christmas I had to go to the mall by myself because everyone was either in school or busy.  I needed to buy a few last minute gifts and it was the only time I was going to have to take care of it, so I drove down to the store alone.  I took all the necessary precautions and searched for a parking space that was visible, looked around for any “scary” looking people and ran for the front door.  Once inside I held on to my purse and quickly made my way to each store on my list.  It was a successful trip and I ended it by purchasing some perfume for my mom at Dillards.  I was rather pleased with how well things had gone.  I was, in fact, so pleased that I walked right out of the store towards my car before I realized I had used the wrong exit! (Have you ever done that?)

It was getting dark and I quickly looked around to gather my bearings.  I figured out that I would have to walk across the parking lot and around the corner to get to my van.  My heart was beating so hard I could feel it.

As I cut through the parking lot, I heard footsteps behind me.  I had been rotating my head like an owl looking for “thieves” and “bad men” all the way to this point, so I was surprised to turn around and see a scruffy-bearded, white man about my age.  He was dressed in a dirty dark blue hoodie and ratty jeans.  He locked eyes with me and I panicked.  I scanned the lot for other shoppers and of course there was no one there.  I decided I would go around instead of putting my back towards the man and when I raised my eyes to try and locate him, I couldn’t find him…..until his foot scraped some pebbles. I jerked my head in his direction and noticed that he had put up his hoodie, crossed through the cars and was headed straight for me.  I ran to my van, slid the side door open, hurled myself and my shopping bags across the seat and locked the doors.

Then I set off the alarm.

He ran off as quick as he had appeared.

That man was out in that parking lot that day waiting to rob/assault someone.  He was lurking because he had some BAD intentions.  I was not expecting to face danger that day, but it was waiting on me and I had to act and act quickly.  Mark has taught me ways to scope out a situation and behave in a manner that would help me, but sometimes danger pops up out of nowhere and we have to be ready whether it be a spiritual battle or a human one.

We cannot live our lives in fear of our enemies, but live in wisdom and be prepared.

Do you know how I work through my fears of the dangers lurking and waiting to destroy me?

Scripture.

Not just fear and peace verses, but verses that remind me of God’s authority in my life.  Verses that remind me of His Sovereignty.   Verses that I can cling to in order to battle my flesh and use against my real enemy, the devil.

The psalmist had enemies wanting to destroy him, but he KNEW where to put his thoughts.  I have friends that are facing some nasty court battles, custody issues, property disputes, cancer reports, salacious gossip, and financial ruin.  These are ALL factors being used by THE ENEMY to destroy them.  But God’s Word offers direction even in these battles.

We have to choose what we will lean upon when we find ourselves facing attack.  Will we lean on the arm of flesh or the Authority of the Faithful Word?

One old preacher put it like this:  “To lean on the arm of flesh is an insult to God”.

Is anything TOO HARD for Him?  No.  Not ever.

Join me in Dwelling on the following verses and ask God to help me and you to consider, as did the psalmist, HIS Testimonies.

For the LORD your God is God of gods, and Lord of lords, a great God, a mighty, and a terrible, which regardeth not persons, nor taketh reward:”  Deuteronomy 10:17

“The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? the LORD is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?”  Psalms 27:1

“I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.”  Revelation 1:8

“And I heard as it were the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of mighty thunderings, saying, Alleluia: for the Lord God omnipotent reigneth.”  Revelation 19:6

I, even I, am the LORD; and beside me there is no saviour.”  Isaiah 43:11

“Salvation belongeth unto the LORD: thy blessing is upon thy people. Selah.”  Psalms 3:8

“What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee.”  Psalms 56:3

Is there an enemy out to do you harm?  Remind yourself and the devil of WHO your God is.  Victory can be had THROUGH THE WORD!

Until Next Time, Lord willing,

Sheri

 

Day 170

“I am thine, save me; for I have sought thy precepts.”  Psalms 119:94

On June 25, 1994 I became Mrs. Sheri Edwards.  I took my husband’s last name and officially became part of the Edwards Family.  As soon as the preacher pronounced us “Husband and Wife” I was no longer single, but married.  From that day until death parts us,  I have every right, under God and by law, to turn to my husband for help.  Why?

Because I belong.

“Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.”  Matthew 19:6

The psalmist opens today’s verse by declaring that he belongs to God.  He has recognized his position and God’s in those five words.

The Bible says that Christians are accepted in the beloved because of Christ:

“To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.”  Ephesians 1:6

That means we belong!  We have an Advocate, a Friend, a Mediator, and a Helper!  And when we need help, we can just call on Him and ask, just like the psalmist was doing.  Just like I did with Mark today as I tried to carry a bunch of heavy bags and couldn’t maneuver very well and I asked him for help.  I am his family, so naturally, he helped me!

If your heart belongs to Christ then you have a position that is VERY secure!  You don’t have to get in line to receive help or wait your turn to speak to your Lord!  You can call Him RIGHT NOW and He will hear you!

And do you know what reminds us that we have a spot in the family of God?

The Bible!

Do you know what reminds us that God is All Powerful and capable to handle all our problems?

The Bible!

Dwelling in God and His Word will keep you focused on what is TRUE.  The devil would have you thinking you are alone in this life and that God does not care about you, but my friend that is FALSE!  You can call on Him today for help and He will give it to you.

You don’t have to be a great orator in order to talk to God either.  Look what the psalmist said: “save me”.  He needed help and he was correct in seeking it from the One Who could answer him!

Are you going to trudge through the day with despair or are you going to recognize your position in the family of God?

You belong.  You are NOT alone!

Isn’t that a wonderful thought to begin the day with today?

Until Next Time, Lord willing,

Sheri

Day 169

“I will never forget thy precepts: for with them thou hast quickened me.”  Psalms 119:93

There have been many times over my life since I have been saved that God renewed my spirit and my thoughts by using His Word.  There have also been times that He caused me to really see that it was HIM working in my life by using His Word.

One such time was when I was about 26 years old.  I was a young mother of one and pregnant with my second.  I spent my days preparing our little house in Gary IN for our new baby while Mark drove a lumber truck in Chicago Heights.  Those were hard days but good days.  I would chase Katie around the yard and house until she tired out then I would fold laundry and clean up whatever gigantic mess Katie had managed to make.  I’d cook a meager dinner and wait for Mark to come home and we would go to the library to check out books on different countries in the world.

You see, Mark and I had recently graduated from Bible college and we were seeking God’s will for our lives as missionaries.  We had been planning on going to Lebanon but the doors to that country had closed, so we told God to show us where in the world He wanted us.

We checked out books about Albania, Canada, Haiti, Russia, Dominique, etc.  We would pray over each one and study about it’s history and culture and statistics.  But then one day God sent someone by to talk to us about Brazil.  A man by the name of Doug Kalapp spoke with my husband about the need for missionaries in the Amazon.  Then another missionary from southern Brazil came by our house and asked us to come work with them.  So, we ran to the library and checked out books about the Amazon and the country of Brazil in general.  I chuckle when I think back to trying to pronounce the names of cities there because I had no idea that one of them would be where my youngest son would be born.

Once Mark and I began praying about Brazil, something started happening inside each of us.  We felt pressed to keep praying and before long, several weeks had passed.  Early one morning Mark left for work and I went about cleaning our house and caring for Katie when I began thinking about what it would be like to be a missionary in the Amazon.  I don’t remember what I was doing, but I stopped and opened my Bible and began to read.  All the while I was praying about God’s will for my family.  After a while, my eyes landed on the following verse:

“There is a river, the streams whereof shall make glad the city of God, the holy place of the tabernacles of the most High.”  Psalms 46:4

Now, this verse had absolutely NOTHING to do with the Amazon, yet oddly enough, does speak of God’s provision.  I cannot explain to you what happened when I read it, but God settled the calling to Brazil in my heart that day with this verse.  I couldn’t wait for Mark to come home so I could talk to him about it.

Later that evening my husband unlocked the front door and walked in tired from his day.  We sat down to eat our little dinner and Katie busied herself with food in her high chair.  Mark and I began discussing our day and he said, “Sheri, there is something I want to share with you.”  I could tell there was something on his heart and I told him I had something to talk about as well.  I can’t remember who said it first, but Mark said God had been plowing in his heart and while waiting for his truck to be unloaded he had been reading the Bible.  Want to take a guess at what verse he read?

“There is a river, the streams whereof shall make glad the city of God, the holy place of the tabernacles of the most High.”  Psalms 46:4

Yep.  God had been working on Mark as well.

This has never happened to us again in such similarity.  But God used His Word to quicken Mark and I about Brazil.

My point with all of this is that God’s Word is more than an accessory for you to carry to church on Sunday morning.

The Word is more than just a pretty book for your nightstand.

God wants to work in your life, your heart and your mind.  And He will use His Word to do it.

I have to agree with the psalmist as he says in the first part of today’s verse, “I will never forget thy precepts: for with them thou hast quickened me.”  I will never forget what God has said He will do in His Word.  Why?  Because of all the times He has used it in my personal life.

Imagine if all those years ago I had folded my laundry and decided to watch Days of Our Lives instead of read the Bible?  I would have missed out on one of the greatest moments of my calling as a missionary.

Do you know how many times I have doubted my call to Brazil?  ZERO.  Even in the hardest, most difficult moments, I still recall that day when God settled it in my heart and in my husband’s heart.

What if we ignore the Word?  What are we missing?

Be sure to start out this week with a conscious effort to READ and DWELL in the Holy Word of God.  Don’t let Satan distract you from what is important.

God is faithful and just.  He will help you sort your life if you will just open that Bible you  have and let Its Words begin to fill your heart and mind.

Wonder what He wants to do in your heart today?

Don’t miss out!

Until Next Time, Lord willing,

Sheri

Day 168

STUDY TIME!

(On Saturdays and Sundays my blog posts will give you a verse to study. I won’t give you the reference….you have to find it for yourself. I will then ask you some questions)

VERSE:

“Unless thy law had been my delights, I should then have perished in mine affliction.”

STUDY:

  • Look at Psalm 119:24.  The psalmist delighted in the Word and let It do what?
  • Had the Psalmist NOT looked to the Word, what does he say would have happened to him?
  • The following of God’s Word is life and death; to us and also those we influence.

*** HELPFUL TIP ***

If you do not own a concordance or commentary, try downloading the e-sword app to your phone or tablet. This app can be VERY useful when you want to do a word study or find a verse when you are on the go.

Until Next Time, Lord willing,

Sheri

Day 167

STUDY TIME!

(On Saturdays and Sundays my blog posts will give you a verse to study. I won’t give you the reference….you have to find it for yourself. I will then ask you some questions)

VERSE:

“They continue this day according to thine ordinances: for all are thy servants.”

STUDY:

  • What does the “they” refer to in this verse?
  • How are they His servants?
  • What causes them to continue being His servants?
  • Read Psalm 104.

*** HELPFUL TIP ***

If you do not own a concordance or commentary, try downloading the e-sword app to your phone or tablet. This app can be VERY useful when you want to do a word study or find a verse when you are on the go.

Until Next Time, Lord willing,

Sheri

Day 166

“Thy faithfulness is unto all generations: thou hast established the earth, and it abideth.”  Psalms 119:90

For I am the LORD, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed.”  Malachi 3:6

 

What can we count on in this life? Jobs, leaders, friends and family come and go.  We would like to think we can count on them, but the reality is, we can’t.  And the moment you make the mistake of thinking you can is the moment you have opened yourself up for a world of hurt.  Just take a look at the politics and politicians that have met this week and ask yourself if you can put stock into everything that has been said and done.

I can’t even count on myself.  Yep, I said it.  I often joke about “Tomorrow Sheri”.  I don’t know what she will be like, so I can’t guarantee what she will want to do.  LOL!  Just ask my husband how often I can change what we are going to have for dinner and he will give you an earful on my indecisiveness.

So what can we count on?

God’s Word.

It has been faithful and God has been faithful for all of time.  From generation, to generation, to generation.  God has yet to be anything less or different than what His Word tells us He is.  I don’t understand why I allow sin to distract me from trusting in the Lord at all times, but sometimes I get in the flesh and I doubt.

The longer I look at a fellow human being changes the way I look at my life because I have quit looking at the faithfulness of God.  I see the frailty of men and their shortcomings as they effect my life and I focus on that instead of the faithful promises of my God and that is WRONG!

God said He will be my light in darkness.  So when death and pain and suffering are snuffing out the light of my life, all I need to do is shift my gaze to God’s Faithfulness.

“Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.”  John 8:12

God said He will lead me in the way I need to go.  So when I am confused and ladened down with the decisions of my life, I need to shift my gaze to the faithfulness of my God.

“Thus saith the LORD, thy Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel; I am the LORD thy God which teacheth thee to profit, which leadeth thee by the way that thou shouldest go.”  Isaiah 48:17

God said He will uphold me and strengthen me.  So when I am weakened by trials, illness and pain, all I need to do is shift my gaze yet again to HIS FAITHFULNESS.

“Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.”  Isaiah 41:10

He doesn’t change.  It is a simple, yet profound FACT.

Quit looking around.  Look UP!

Until Next Time, Lord willing,

Sheri

Day 165

“LAMED. For ever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven.”  Psalms 119:89

As we travel towards our farm from the city we know we are getting close to our road when we see a certain mountian, which we have nicknamed the “hat” because of it’s similar shape to a cowboy hat.  Just after the “hat” we turn down our dirt road and face another mountain that looms in the distance.  These places are landmarks to us as to where our little spot of home is in Brazil and in some weird fashion, it comforts us when we see them.

The psalmist has come through a tremendously difficult time in his life.  He has hung on and fought against his flesh and his enemies as he forged ahead in his quest to serve God.  Now as he senses that the commandments of God have been his help and stay, he makes a statement in a more confident tone — almost a more joyful tone — as he declares the certainty of God’s Word.  He has proven IT, held fast to IT, and trusted IT!  He knows IT has been the One Constant Thing in his life and IT has NOT changed.

“I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help.”  Psalms 121:1

You and I can be just as confident in God’s Word as the psalmist was.  We can be assured that when we lift our eyes towards the Lord, He WILL help us.  His Word will be there when absolutely no one else is and His Word will be that guiding landmark that we need to make it to where we are going.  We can take comfort in that as we serve the Lord and it will anchor us to something steady instead of something that changes with time.

FOREVER is the kind of stability I need.  I want something that is going to be what I can count on for any time of any day for any phase of my life.  And the psalmist tells us that God’s Word is settled FOREVER.

“And wisdom and knowledge shall be the stability of thy times, and strength of salvation: the fear of the LORD is his treasure.”  Isaiah 33:6

I think I will keep reading the Bible and following after what It says….how about you?

Until Next Time, Lord willing,

Sheri