Saturday, April 16, 2016

Devotional Reading for Sunday, April 17, 2016

A special devotional from Pastor Ashish to celebrate our favorite day of our trip: Sunday!

Today's reading is 1 Samuel 19; 1 Chronicles 7; Psalm 59; and Matthew 4.
As soon as he had finished speaking to Saul, the soul of Jonathan was knit to the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul... Then Jonathan made a covenant with David, because he loved him as his own soul. And Jonathan stripped himself of the robe that was on him and gave it to David, and his armor, and even his sword and his bow and his belt.  —1 Samuel 18:1,3-4

Today is a very special day. The opportunity to worship the Lord in another country, in a different language and culture is amazing. Truly our God is glorious. We are here not because of how smart we are, but purely because of His grace and great power. The blood of Christ has redeemed all of us. We all have received the same grace and we have the same Father.

In a world where everyone is chasing after something – after recognition, value, they want to be remembered, feel valued – how as a child of God should I live my life? How much is enough for me? Is there is a continuous hunger in my heart for achievements, to feel valued, to be recognized, want to matter and feel a sense of worthiness? People can use any means to reach to that goal.
In today’s devotion, we have two men, Saul and David. We see Saul is very strong; he can do anything to accomplish his desires. Saul assumes he is in control of his world, and he hurls his spear at David thinking he will fix David’s fate, but David dodges out of the way, leaving the spear stuck in the wall. Surely God always delivers David from the hands of Saul.

Let us remember that God is in control over our lives. He rules over everything. Though the enemy out there may look big, and the world around us may seem powerful, our God is on the throne. He is in control.

Another aspect that I see in this passage is the deplorable situation of Saul. Well, not to forget that everyone who has not found the living water is in the same condition. Through Christ Jesus I am complete; I don’t have to strive for recognition. I am a new creation, I am a child of God, I am righteous through Christ Jesus.

We have received the Holy Spirit, but can the Holy Spirit still move in a powerful way just as He had done in the first century?  This passage gives me hope. In the context of anger (18:8), jealousy (18:9), mention of evil spirit (18:10), fear of man (18:12), conspiracy (18:25), enmity (18:29), restlessness (19:1), ungratefulness (19:5), lying (19:6), and deceiving (19:9), we see God moves through His Holy Spirit.

We see God intervene in an unexpected way. Yes, the Spirit of God came upon the troops of Saul who had gone to nab David (1 Sam.19:18-21), and the Spirit of God came upon even Saul (1 Sam.19:22-24).

Our God has not changed. If He could override the world then, He can do that even today.

Lord, I thank you that you have promised to never leave me nor forsake me. I am weak, Lord; I am thirsty for your Spirit. Fill me with your presence. Thank you, Jesus, for the price that you paid for me. I am complete in you; the fountain of living water flows in me. Lord, use even me today; you flow through me. Lord, help my unbelief. God, you are on the throne and have gone ahead of me. The things that seems impossible to me are not for you, Lord. Thank you that this is a day of miracles. I love you, Jesus. Amen.
Pastor Ashish

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