Saturday, March 16, 2013

A Star Player

This year, I'm sharing my "Treasures" of my study of my "Ponder the Morsels" book. I've picked 31 Psalms to study throughout 2013. Today I studied Psalm 11. Here is what I learned.

The Lord ·tests [examines] ·those who do right and those who do wrong [the righteous and the wicked], but he hates those who love ·to hurt others [violence]. Psalm 11:5 (EXB)

The Lord tests and proves those who are right and good and those who are sinful. And His soul hates the one who loves to hurt others. Psalm 11:4 (NLV)
The Lord trieth the righteous,.... As gold is tried in the fire, by afflictive providences; hereby he tries their graces, their faith, and patience, their hope, and love, and fear; and, by so doing, expresses his love to them, since this is all for their good... Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
The Lord trieth the righteous - He does not abandon them; he tries them to show their faithfulness, and he afflicts them for their good. Clarke's Commentary on the Bible
Q: Why is training necessary? A: Training is necessary because if you don't train, you won't be able to figure out the flaws of what you doing. For example, say a professional basketball player wasn't very good at dribbling. If he doesn't train, he might not perform well in his game, but if he does, chances are he wouldn't do as bad as he would have if he didn't. Keep in mind that just because you train one day doesn't mean that you are going to get better by a significant amount. You have to train excessively. 

We train in all aspects of our lives. And with training comes testing. When we were children, the training and testing was a constant at school, and in sports. Then as we grew older our jobs have “performance evaluations”.  Our employers want to know if we were being effective in our jobs.

However, when God trains and tests us, we get bothered, upset, and at times angry. “Why me?”, is often the first sound we make when being trained and tested. 
But as God tests us, He is highlighting the areas that are successful and identifying those which need revision in our lives. The only way to really understand something is to put it into practice. If a football  player only studies the play book, and never suits up for practice or plays a game, how does he know if he can really play football. Head knowledge is only PART of life. Experience provides an opportunity to see if we really have learned! We have the opportunity to practice what we know. 

Training and testing is part of all aspects of our lives. And when God trains and tests us, it’s not punishment, rather He is allowing us the opportunity to be a “star player” and learn our strengthens and weaknesses. The only way to learn and master anything is to study, train, and be tested. 

Having the opportunity to train, and be tested on God’s team is challenging, but so very rewarding and is the only way to create not only a positive day.... but a positive God-designed life, and maybe become a “star-player”. 

The master answered, ‘You did well. You are a good and ·loyal [faithful] servant. Matthew 25:23 a (EXB)

Friday, March 15, 2013

Follow the Examples

Throughout this year, each day of the month, I'm "Treasure Hunting" in a Psalm. I've created a "Ponder Every Morsel of Truth" Book to record the truths as I learn them. The fifteen of each month, I'm studying Psalm 8. Here's what Treasure I found today.

You made him a little less than the angels and gave him a crown of greatness and honor. Psalm 8:5 (NLV)

The angel was made immortal, intellectual, holy, powerful, glorious, and in these properties lay their likeness to the Creator. Henry Melvill, B.D., 1854

What do we know about angels?

Worship and praise - This is the main activity portrayed in heaven (Isaiah 6:1-3; Revelation 4-5).
Revealing - They serve as messengers to communicate God's will to men. They helped reveal the law to Moses (Acts 7:52-53), and served as the carriers of much of the material in Daniel, and Revelation.
Guiding - Angels gave instructions to Joseph about the birth of Jesus (Matthew 1-2), to the women at the tomb, to Philip (Acts 8:26), and to Cornelius (Acts 10:1-8).
Providing - God has used angels to provide physical needs such as food for Hagar (Genesis 21:17-20), Elijah (1 Kings 19:6), and Christ after His temptation (Matthew 4:11).
Delivering - Getting God's people out of danger once they're in it. Angels released the apostles from prison in Acts 5, and repeated the process for Peter in Acts 12.
Strengthening and encouraging - Angels strengthened Jesus after His temptation (Matt 4:11), encouraged the apostles to keep preaching after releasing them from prison (Acts 5:19-20), and told Paul that everyone on his ship would survive the impending shipwreck (Acts 27:23-25).
Answering prayer - God often uses angels as His means of answering the prayers of His people (Daniel 9:20-24; 10:10-12; Acts 12:1-17).
Caring for believers at the moment of death - In the story of Lazarus and the rich man, we read that angels carried the spirit of Lazarus to “Abraham's bosom” when he died (Luke 16:22). 
Dr. John Bechtle
I can’t do all that angels do. However, by following the examples of angels, there are things that I can do. Worship and Praise God. Strengthen and Encourage. Be Involved in Prayer. 

Worship and Praise God.  The angels sing: “Amen! Praise, glory, wisdom, thanks, honor, power, and strength be to our God forever and ever! Amen!” Revelation 7:12 Shouldn’t I do the same? 
Strengthen and Encourage. But at night an angel from the Lord opened the doors to their cell and led them out of the prison. 20 The angel told them, “Stand in the temple courtyard, and tell the people everything about life in Christ.” Acts 5:19-20 (GW) Isn’t the the encouraging message that I need to share, too?
Be Involved in Prayer. God has used angels to answer prayers and provide help. My responsibility is to pray! And need be... help if God calls on me to do so. 

If I follow the examples that the angels demonstrated, that would create a very positive, God honoring day.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Perpetual Raving

This year, I'm sharing my "Treasures" of my study of my "Ponder the Morsels" book. I've picked 31 Psalms to study throughout 2013. Today I studied Psalm 150. Here is what I learned.

Praise God in his ·Temple [holy place; or holiness]; praise him in his ·mighty heaven.
Praise him for his strength; praise him for his [abundant] greatness.
Praise him with trumpet blasts; praise him with harps and lyres.
Praise him with tambourines and dancing; praise him with stringed instruments and flutes.
Praise him with loud cymbals; praise him with crashing cymbals.
Let everything that breathes praise the Lord.
Praise the Lord! Psalm 150 (EXB)

Praise: make boast self, celebrate, commend, deal, make, foolish glory, give light, shine, to rave.

Praise is a theme throughout all the Psalms. But what is praise? 

Praise: noun, verb, praised, prais·ing.
1. the act of expressing approval or admiration; commendation; laudation.
2. the offering of grateful homage in words or song, as an act of worship: a hymn of praise to God.
3. the state of being approved or admired: The king lived in praise for many years.
4. Archaic. a ground for praise, or a merit.
verb (used with object)
5. to express approval or admiration of; commend; extol.
6. to offer grateful homage to (God or a deity), as in words or song.

So simply put, praise is a form of worship that involves giving reverence, love, and respect for/to Almighty God.
Praising God is not based on what He does, has done, or is doing for me. Praise is not based on how I feel, or my circumstances. Praise is not a one time event. Praise is not only for Sunday. 

Praise is all about God. Praise is worshiping who God is. Praise is raving about God. Praise is based on God’s characteristics. Praise is to be continuous. Praise is to be part of my daily life. 

P: Perpetual
R: Raving
A: About an Almighty
I: Irrefutable
S: Steadfast
E: Eternal God! 

Perpetual Raving About an Almighty, Irrefutable, Steadfast, Eternal God!

To create a positive day, I need to be praising God with my actions, attitude, out-look, and voice—perpetual raving about my Almighty God!

Wednesday, March 13, 2013


Throughout this year, each day of the month, I'm "Treasure Hunting" in a Psalm. I've created a "Ponder Every Morsel of Truth" Book to record the truths as I learn them. The thirteen of each month, I'm studying Psalm 146. Here's what Treasure I found today.

Do not trust influential people, mortals who cannot help you. Psalm 146:3 (GW)

Don’t put your confidence in powerful people; there is no help for you there. Psalm 146:3 (NLT)

Do not put your trust in princes, in human beings, who cannot save. Psalm 146:3 (NIV)

Not: nay, neither, never, no, nor, not, nothing.
Trust: be bold confident, secure, sure, careless one, put confidence, make to hope.
Princes (powerful people): Generous; hence, magnanimous; willing hearted.
Help: deliverance, help, safety, salvation, victory,rescue.

Looking to people to help me, give me security is short-sighted! Why rely on people, when I can look to Almighty God? Why trust in mere mortals, when I can trust the Creator? Why put my hope in people who although may have money, will someday die, when I can place my security in an eternal God? 

Looking to people for happiness, security, hope is being very short-sighted! 

Short-sighted: stupid, not thought through, backward, batty, birdbrained, blockheaded, boneheaded, brainless, crazy, dumb, feeble-minded, foolish, harebrained, idiotic, ignorant, ill-conceived, imbecilic, impractical, indiscreet, moronic, poorly planned, retarded, senseless, short-sighted, silly, slow, sophomoric, underdeveloped, unformed, witless.

No matter how you phrase it—short-sighted is just plain DUMB! So why do I do it? Because I begin to look around for how I can fix things. I want to “do it myself”. I want to prove that I know best. But time and time again, God patiently teaches me that trusting in people is futile—short-sighted, just plain dumb! 

I need to “just say no” to looking for security, hope in people, and simply trust God Almighty—He is very trustworthy and provides eternal hope! 

To create a positive day, I need to stop being short-sighted and place my hope and trust in the God of eternity!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Consider it Accomplished

This year, I'm sharing my "Treasures" of my study of my "Ponder the Morsels" book. I've picked 31 Psalms to study throughout 2013. Today I studied Psalm 138. Here is what I learned.

I will worship toward thy holy temple, And give thanks unto thy name for thy lovingkindness and for thy truth: For thou hast magnified thy word above all thy name. Psalm 138:2 (ASV)

"For thou hast magnified thy word above all thy name," the words may be thus read, and will better agree with the Hebrew; "thou hast magnified thy name above all things, in thy word," that is, in fulfilling thy word thou hast magnified thy name above all things, in that thou hast fulfilled thy word. What thou freely promisedst, thou hast faithfully performed; what thou hast spoken with thy mouth thou hast fulfilled with thy hand; for which thy name is wonderfully to be magnified. James Nalton, 1664.

What God says, He will do. No doubt. No ‘wiggle room’. Simply... if God said it, consider it accomplished.  God is to be trusted! That is a very comforting fact.

Consider it accomplished. 

All that God has said, I know that it is trustworthy because he is not only able to perform well, having a proven capacity to fulfil what He promises, but because of who God is... holy, just, faithful... He cannot go against His Word. He is faithful to do what He says. 

Consider it accomplished. Period. No ifs, ands, or buts. It’s done. 

To create a positive day, I only have to remember and act upon the fact that whatever God has said... consider it accomplished—period!

Monday, March 11, 2013

Specific Destination

Throughout this year, each day of the month, I'm "Treasure Hunting" in a Psalm. I've created a "Ponder Every Morsel of Truth" Book to record the truths as I learn them. The eleventh of each month, I'm studying Psalm 117. Here's what Treasure I found today.

For His mercy and loving-kindness are great toward us, and the truth and faithfulness of the Lord endure forever. Praise the Lord! (Hallelujah!) Psalm 117:2 (AMP)

Toward us: literally, prevailed over or protected us.

God’s mercy and loving-kindness is great TOWARD US... TOWARD ME! It’s not just randomly thrown out there. God’s mercy and loving-kindness has a specific destination—me (and you too!). God knows about me. He cares about me, specifically 

God, investigate my life;
    get all the facts firsthand.
I’m an open book to you;
    even from a distance, you know what I’m thinking.
You know when I leave and when I get back;
    I’m never out of your sight.
You know everything I’m going to say
    before I start the first sentence.
I look behind me and you’re there,
    then up ahead and you’re there, too—
    your reassuring presence, coming and going.
This is too much, too wonderful—
    I can’t take it all in! Psalm 139:1-6 (MSG) 
Oh yes, you shaped me first inside, then out;
    you formed me in my mother’s womb.
I thank you, High God—you’re breathtaking!
    Body and soul, I am marvelously made!
    I worship in adoration—what a creation!
You know me inside and out,
    you know every bone in my body;
You know exactly how I was made, bit by bit,
    how I was sculpted from nothing into something.
Like an open book, you watched me grow from conception to birth;
    all the stages of my life were spread out before you,
The days of my life all prepared
    before I’d even lived one day. Psalm 139:13-16 (MSG)

God’s love and mercy have a specific destination—TOWARD me! Knowing that I am the specific destination of God’s love and mercy, sure makes for a very positive day! 

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Always Remember!

This year, I'm sharing my "Treasures" of my study of my "Ponder the Morsels" book. I've picked 31 Psalms to study throughout 2013. Today I studied Psalm 111. Here is what I learned.

He has made his miracles unforgettable. The Lord is merciful and compassionate. Psalm 111:4 (GW)

His miracles are his memorial—This God of Grace, this God of Love. Psalm 111:4 (MSG)

He hath made his wonderful works to be remembered: Jehovah is gracious and merciful. Psalm 111:4 (ASV)

For wonderful indeed are all his works,

Pleasant to know and worthiest to be all
Had in remembrance always with delight. John Milton
To be remembered - literally, "Memory hath he made for his wonderful works." "They" are so made, that man may remember them; the memory of man, also, is so made, that it may retain them. The highest and most appropriate exercise of memory is to retain the lessons which the works of God inculcate; to treasure up for gratitude and for use what he teaches his intelligent creation through those works. Barnes' Notes on the Bible

“I’ll always remember.” 
Damaris Carbaugh,  "No Apology" CD(Words & Music by Scott V. Smith 2000 Discovery House Music)

I’ll always remember God’s goodness and mercy to me;
I’ll always remember I once was a slave, not I’m free.
I owed a great debt, I could not pay the price,
So He opened His heart and He laid down His life
How could I ever forget?
I’ll always remember. 

I’ll always remember He has never, never, ever left me alone;
I’ll always remember that He’s never let me face a battle on my own.
Though ten thousand would fall to my left, to my right, 
My enemies fled from His power and might
How could I ever forget?
I’ll always remember. 

Always remember, no never forget
His sweet mercy, His goodness
Oh, He is so marvelous
Always remember, no never forget;
Oh, His wonderful works, He is so marvelous! 

I’ll always remember that He’s been my shelter in the storm;
I’ll always remember how He covered me and kept me from harm.
Though trouble had come, put my faith to the test, 
When I called on His name, He took care of the rest
How could I ever forget? (Chorus) 

I’ll always remember, I was guilty and worthy of blame, 
But my sin is no longer remembered for the sake of His Son, God forgave;
My sins are as far as the east from the west, 
They lay deep in the sea of God’s forgetfulness;
How could I ever forget?
I’ll always remember. Remember. 

What am I remembering? Our memories are triggered by sights, smells, words, touches, etc. And we take special effort to remember those events, dates, people, that are important to us. All the wonderful things that God has done for me, should be remembered and celebrated! 

The more I talk about what God is doing, the more I will remember what He has done, and worship Him for His greatness. And the more that I remember God’s marvelous works, the more positive a day I create.