Follow along for 31 Days of Devotionals from the books of Psalms and Proverbs written by Pastor Ryan Binkley and Pastor Banks Babade.
“Whoever is kind to the poor lends to the Lord, and he will reward them for what they have done.”
Proverbs 19:17 NIV
The Lord owns everything. He says in Psalms that every beast of the field is His and He owns the cattle on a thousand hills and this means that really it all belongs to Him. The Lord owns everything but he does borrow resources on occasion and he needs you and I to loan Him kindness, mercy, food, clothing, and money to Him when called upon. He chooses to bless others people though people and whenever you are blessing and lifting up the poor you are essentially loaning to the Lord. The Lord commanded the harvesters in the Old Testament to not harvest every piece of grain and every corner of the field but to also leave some behind for those “gleaning” behind them. Some of the less fortunate would walk behind the harvesters and whatever was left over they would pick up and take home. One day, Boaz instructed his workers to watch over and leave some behind for Ruth as she was working in the field. God blessed Boaz, eventually he married Ruth and they were blessed. Their legacy as parents is that their son Obed, was the grandfather of King David whose lineage included Jesus the Messiah. Now that is a reward. God doesn’t just pay us back financially for being kind to the poor but also rewards us spiritually and in every way. God wants us to be available to lend to Him on occasion and let’s be a light to the world by helping the poor. When we do everyone will be blessed and God’s kingdom will advance!
“Blessed are those who have regard for the weak; the Lord delivers them in times of trouble. The Lord protects and preserves them— they are counted among the blessed in the land— he does not give them over to the desire of their foes. The Lord sustains them on their sickbed and restores them from their bed of illness.”
Psalm 41:1-3 NIV
Father, I thank you for opening up my eyes and heart to others that in difficult situations. Protect and preserve your children in times of trouble and be with them in their life. May all of your children be counted among the blessed in our city and world and may we do all we can to touch the lives of those in need. Thank you for blessing me to be a blessing to someone else today. I love you Lord, be with me as I go about my day and may you be glorified every where my steps take me. Amen.
Wisdom and Worship-Day 18
“An offended friend is harder to win back than a fortified city. Arguments separate friends like a gate locked with bars.”
Proverbs 18:19 NLT
There are several friends that I have in life that we are no longer really close to because of offenses. Sometimes in life people get upset because of an unmet expectation or disappointment and no matter how hard you try and repair the relationship you feel like iron bars are separating you. As I have walked through this experience a few times, I realize that I have to work harder to be more considerate, kinder, and timelier with my friends and family. The cost of being a leader is high and influence should never be taken for granted. Many of the problems I have had are my own fault and I certainly cannot blame someone else for being offended with me especially when the mistake or misunderstanding is on my side. That said, you will always be called to love and forgive an offense as a Christian believer. That doesn’t mean you don’t address the situation because you are supposed to address it with clarity and love. Jesus said in Luke 17 that if a brother offends you to go to them and rebuke them and if he repents to forgive them. In Matthew 18, Jesus says to go to your brother who offended you and if he hears you then you have one your brother back. It also says, that if he doesn’t hear to take one or two others also, so you can all speak to him with clarity about what he did wrong and then if he doesn’t hear you at all, then to separate yourself. Most situations I see though do not involve major sin rather they are personal matters where someone disappointed someone else and before much is said, they are cut off relationally. Very few people go to someone that offended them and fewer it seems truly forgive them. I think we have to decide that if we are going to be a part of a family, be in a marriage for life, work with a team in the corporate world, or be in a church serving that there will be plenty of times for offense to take root in our hearts. It is up to us though to decide how to handle them. Many people are disillusioned with church because of disappointments. My encouragement today is to go to your friends once again and to save a friendship whenever you can. Go to the person that you offended or that your offended with and repair it the best you can. In life, we don’t have a tremendous number of close friends, if you can save one it will be well worth it and I am sure the benefits of gaining a friend back will pay eternal blessings.
“Why am I discouraged? Why is my heart so sad? I will put my hope in God! I will praise him again— my Savior and my God! Now I am deeply discouraged, but I will remember you— even from distant Mount Hermon, the source of the Jordan, from the land of Mount Mizar. I hear the tumult of the raging seas as your waves and surging tides sweep over me. But each day the Lord pours his unfailing love upon me, and through each night I sing his songs, praying to God who gives me life.”
Psalms 42:5-8 NLT
Father, I give You my disappointments, my sadness, and my discouragements today. I remember Your pursuit of me, Your love, and Your faithfulness. I will sing of Your grace each day and night. Thank You for loving me and giving me life. Even though I walk through difficult times, You have never forsake me. You are the one who lifts my head and I thank You for loving me in every season I face in life.