~ Click on this link for today's readings ~
Jeremiah 8:8-9:26 ~ Colossians 3:1-17
Psalm 78:32-55 ~ Proverbs 24:27
Old Testament - Jeremiah chapter 9 verses 23 & 24 stood out to me today - "This is what the LORD says: "Let not the wise man gloat in his wisdom, or the mighty man in his might, or the rich man in his riches. Let them boast in this alone: that they truly know me and understand that I am the LORD who is just and righteous, whose love is unfailing, and that I delight in these things. I, the LORD, have spoken!" Think God is serious when he follows something he says with "I, the LORD, have spoken!"? Do we ever gloat in our wisdom? Gloat in our might? Gloat in our riches? Instead, have you ever boasted that you truly know God and understand that God is just and righteous? Do you believe that God's love is unfailing?
I am enjoying watching for the interplay between when God is speaking and when Jeremiah is speaking in our readings. Basically you typically just have to watch for quotation marks at the beginning of a paragraph to see that God is speaking. If there are not quotation marks, it is likely Jeremiah speaking. At the end of chapter 8 and in the beginning of chapter 9 we read these words of Jeremiah's as he weeps for Jerusalem - and we hear from the people and God briefly too. It is a poetic interplay of dialogue between all three in chapter 8 verse 18 through chapter 9 verse 2 - starting with words from Jeremiah: "My grief is beyond healing; my heart is broken. Listen to the weeping of my people; it can be heard all across the land. "Has the LORD abandoned Jerusalem?" the people ask. "Is her King no longer there?" "Oh, why have they angered me with their carved idols and worthless gods?" asks the LORD. "The harvest is finished, and the summer is gone," the people cry, "yet we are not saved!" I weep for the hurt of my people. I am stunned and silent, mute with grief. Is there no medicine in Gilead? Is there no physician there? Why is there no healing for the wounds of my people? Oh, that my eyes were a fountain of tears; I would weep forever! I would sob day and night for all my people who have been slaughtered. Oh, that I could go away and forget them and live in a shack in the desert, for they are all adulterous and treacherous."
New Testament - Today in Colossians chapter 3, we read about “Rules for Holy Living.” In verses 12 through 14, we read: “Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.” How are you doing on each of these virtues in your life today - Compassion? Kindness? Humility? Gentleness? Patience? Forgiveness? Love? Do you think you can do each of these well using just your own will power? Or, do regularly pray to Jesus to give you these virtues within your heart and to bring them to fruition in your life? Can you allow love to lead within you? Will you allow Jesus to lead you?
Psalms - Psalm 78 verses 41 & 42 stood out to me today - "Again and again they tested God's patience and frustrated the Holy One of Israel. They forgot about his power and how he rescued them from their enemies." I am continually amazed at how similar we are today to the Israelites when they were wandering in the desert. I am sure that we can on occasion test God's patience and frustrate him. I would also venture a pretty good guess that many of us forget about God's power. And forget how God rescued us from our enemies - and continues to rescue us daily. How about you - do you ever forget about God's power? Do you ever forget about how he has rescued you? What can we do to help ourselves remember? How do we stop testing God's patience and forgetting about Him?
Proverbs - Proverbs 24 verse 27 is quite practical - "Develop your business first before building your house." I have to admit that I'm getting a bit stumped by our Proverbs lately. Maybe I'm looking for deeper religious insights in the Proverbs of late, than is really there. This one may simply mean - don't buy/build a house until you know where your source of income is coming from. Develop your business / job first. Makes sense... Anyone got anything deeper on this Proverb? :)
Comments from you - What verses or insights stand out to you in today's readings? Please post up by clicking on the "Comments" link below!