Encouragement for Today - Aug. 17, 2009
August 17, 2009
Getting Ready for Tomorrow
“Then Joshua told the people, "Purify yourselves for tomorrow the LORD will do great wonders among you," Joshua 3:5 (NLT)
Last year the Lord whispered to my heart to stop watching a certain television show. This show came on once week in the evening. It was not anti-God, but let's just say it did not promote healthy family and personal values, nor did its' writers use the Word of God as a basis for the show's content.
I would love to say I obeyed the Lord with a glad heart and immediately did as He asked, fully confident that He had my best interest in mind. I wish I could say that but I can't. I believed I had the right to challenge the Lord on His request. Can you imagine my nerve?
I remember huffing and puffing like the wolf when he tried to blow down the little pigs’ house. I wanted to watch my show and could not understand what I was doing wrong for the Lord to discipline me in such a way. I argued, "My watching this show is not causing anyone to stumble in their walk with the Lord." I was not influencing anyone else to watch, in fact my family was all in bed. It was my time. Time set aside each week for just me. What possible reason could the Lord have for asking to do this?
Under the conviction of the Holy Spirit, I realized the audacity of my attitude and understood my egoistical reasoning. I thought since I had been obeying the Lord in other areas of life I had the "right" to negotiate His other instructions. I finally saw the fallacy of my arguments to the Lord but up until that point, I’d failed to see that I was the person I was causing to stumble and being wrongly influenced.
Shortly after my tantrum was over and I obeyed God, He introduced me to today's key verse. He also used an incredible book to hammer in His point. His point being: God has something planned for tomorrow and He wants me to be ready for it. In his book i am not but i know I AM, Louie Giglio suggests that we are "i am nots" playing supporting roles beside the star of the story, the great I AM.
Joshua told the people to purify themselves in preparation for tomorrow. God was going to do something amazing in His story the next day and He wanted them to be a part of it. But they needed to prepare for that. They needed to purify themselves. Purify, or sanctify as it is written in the NKJ version, means to wash, to deal with your sin, and perhaps even make a sacrifice so that heart, body, mind, and soul are ready for the day. I was not preparing for my role in God’s Story by continuing to watch the TV show God asked me not watch. I was ending my day in disobedience and separation from the Lord. How could I be ready to take my supporting role beside Him the next day if I was not purified before Him?
Do you realize God wants to do amazing things among you each day? Are we ready each morning to wake up and join the story of God? In order to prepare ourselves for our supporting role in God's story we need follow His instructions – meditate on the "book of instruction day and night" (Joshua 1:8). Be ready my friend! He has a role only you can fulfill.
Dear Lord, help me to know what I should and should not do as Your child. Will You give me a desire to mediate on Your Word day and night? I want to see You at work and join You, fulfilling the role You have for me. Thank You for wanting me to participate in Your story. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
i am not but I know I AM: Welcome to the Story of God, by Louie Giglio
The Yes, No and Maybe of a Balanced Life – audio CD by Wendy Pope
Personalize today's key verse and pray each night: "Dear Lord, help me to be ready for tomorrow. Show me the ways I need to purify and prepare myself for my role in Your story." Read a few verses of Psalm 119 each night and listen to what He has to say.
What if anything is the Lord asking me to do to purify myself for Him?
Do I mediate on the Word of God day and night? If not, why? If yes, how?
Psalm 147:15, "He sends His command to the earth; His Word runs swiftly." (NIV)
Psalm 119:1, "Blessed are they whose ways are blameless, who walk according to the law of the Lord." (NIV)
Psalm 119:11," I have hidden Your word in my heart that I might not sin against you." (NIV)
© 2009 by Wendy Pope. All rights reserved.
Proverbs 31 Ministries
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Matthews, NC 28105