“Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labour. For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow: but woe to him that is alone when he falleth; for he hath not another to help him up.”
We often don’t realize the drastic need to encourage others until we find ourselves in need of encouragement.
After a tough day, we need encouraged to “not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.”
During a long night with a sick child, we need encouraged that “joy cometh in the morning.”
Before a big event, we need encouraged that we “can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth” us.
When we feel weak, we need encouraged that His “grace is sufficient”, for His “strength is made perfect in weakness.”
In times of persecution, we need encouraged that “the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.”
When we feel unsure about what the future holds, we need encouraged to “lean not unto thine own understanding”, but to “acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.”
We want our friends and family to remind us of these and the many more Truths that can encourage us, but we should want to be the one to encourage others even more. Would someone call you an encourager?
May we all strive to be an encouragement to others in their time of need, so that we our time comes around, the Lord will send an encourager to our side.
When we feel like we are alone and need encouraged, let us follow David’s example…”David encouraged himself in the Lord his God.”
Ruth 3 | Romans 4 | Psalm 90
“Iron sharpeneth iron; so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend.”
The Lord places people in our lives for a reason. Some are only there for a short time, some stay forever. Some have been there for a long time, some come right when you need them. If God has crossed your path with a friend that walks alongside of you in your walk with the Lord, thank the Lord for them today.
Thank the Lord today for a friend that laughs with you.
“A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones.”
Thank the Lord today for a friend that rebukes you.
“Open rebuke is better than secret love. Faithful are the wounds of a friend; but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful.”
Thank the Lord today for a friend that encourages you.
“Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labour. For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow…”
Thank the Lord today for a friend that counsels you.
“Ointment and perfume rejoice the heart: so doth the sweetness of a man’s friend by hearty counsel.”
Thank the Lord today for a friend that serves the Lord with you.
“…that ye stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel”
Thank the Lord today for a friend that prays for you.
“Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.”
Thank the Lord today for the godly friends He has placed in your life, and for the Friend that sticks closer than a brother.
“A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly: and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother.”
Ruth 2 | Romans 3 | Psalm 89
“Remember the former things of old: for I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me, Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure:”
Just like He told the children of Israel, God wants us to remember where He has brought us from. We made it safe thus far because He is God, and there is none like Him. We will make it safely through because He knows the end from the beginning. In the every day things, and in the entire life things, He knows the end from the beginning.
The day conviction fell upon our hearts and we realized our need for a Saviour, He knew when we would accept Him, and how He would use our lives for His glory. The morning we received the unpleasant news, He knew how the day would end, and how He would use it for our good.
He knows the end before the phone call.
He knows the end before the diagnosis.
He knows the end before the proposal.
He knows the end before the ______________________.
Regardless of your situation today, He knows the end from the beginning.
There are times in this life, when fear is so heavy,
And burdens weigh on your mind.
You are weak in the knee,
And no strength can you find,
Just hold on, help’s right on time.
My Jesus, He’s always on time.
And though you may see a valley,
He sees the mountain you’ll be standing on.
When all you can see are the tears flowing down,
I’m so glad, He sees what we don’t!
I’ve seen His children walk through the darkest of midnights,
I’ve witnessed faith put to the test.
I have watched as the storm blew in with the thunder,
But in each trial, He knows what’s best.
I am so glad, He knows what’s best.
And though you may see a valley,
He sees the mountain you’ll be standing on.
When all you can see are the tears falling down,
I’m so glad, He sees what we don’t!
He knows the end from the beginning.
He looks ahead past the hurt and the pain.
To a place where His peace passes all understanding,
He sees the sun through the rain!
Amber Eppinette & Joseph Habedank
Trust Him to carry you through.
Rest in His strength.
Delight in Him.
Ruth 1 | Romans 2 | Psalm 88
“And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief: for verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a grain of a mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you.”
The disciples were confused. They were unable to cure the lunatick son, and were reproved by Jesus, being called a faithless generation. They came to Him privately and asked, “Why could not we cast him out?”
Jesus answered them with our text verse today.
How many times in our life have we been confused, wondering why God has not allowed us to do something within our lives? We’ve all been there. But the disciples’ problem is the same one we deal with on a daily basis.
“Because of your unbelief…”
We say we believe that God can do all things, yet when it comes down to it our flesh doubts…
…that our family member will ever get saved since we have prayed for 15 years for them to see their need of salvation.
…that our spouse will ever get that promotion at work that would provide more for the family.
…that our loved one would be healed from the disease they are fighting.
…that our friend would see their need to leave the lifestyle they are living and come back to serving their Saviour.
We doubt every day. Sometimes we are conscious of it, and sometimes we just doubt to be doubting. Our flesh wants us to focus on the negative. To never believe or to believe that it will never happen. How many times does our flesh get the victory?
Jesus gives us the solution to our problem of unbelief.
”…If ye have faith…”
He doesn’t require much faith or great faith, but just the faith of a grain of mustard seed. Why did Christ choose the mustard seed for His example? The mustard seed is one of the tiniest seeds found in the Middle East. This implies that the amount of faith needed to do great things is very small. A black mustard plant grows to be over nine feet tall…yet it starts as a tiny seed.
If we will have just a bit of true faith in God, we can see that nothing is impossible with Him…Little is much when God is in it!
Judges 21 | Romans 1 | Psalm 87
“Then shalt thou delight thyself in the Lord; and I will cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth, and feed thee with the heritage of Jacob thy father: for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it.”
When we delight ourselves in the Lord, only He knows what can take place as we yield ourselves to Him.
Matthew Henry said “He will more and more manifest Himself to us as the delightful subject of our thoughts and meditations and the delightful object of our best affections.”
Is the Lord the delightful subject of our thoughts today?
“In the multitude of my thoughts within me thy comforts delight my soul.”
Allow the Lord to delight your soul today through the comfort that only He can give.
2 Corinthians 1:3-4
“Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort; Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God.”
Delighting in the Lord gives us strength to climb the mountain and reach the high places that God has prepared for us.
“The Lord God is my strength, and he will make my feet like hinds’ feet, and he will make me to walk upon mine high places.”
As we delight in the Lord, He feeds us through His Word. When Jesus was tempted by Satan to make the stones bread, Jesus rebuked him.
“But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.”
Delight in His Word. Be hungry for the Word of God. Savor the Scriptures.
Where could the Lord lead you if you will simply delight in Him?
The only way to find out is to step out in faith and daily seek His direction.
Let Him guide you to the high places.
Judges 19-20 | Acts 28 | Psalm 86
“Then Moses stood in the gate of the camp, and said, Who is on the LORD’s side? let him come unto me. And all the sons of Levi gathered themselves together unto him.”
It is an amazing thing to realize that the Lord is on our side. But we should ask ourselves, “Are we on God’s side?”
Let’s consider the context of when Moses asked the children of Israel the question, “Who is on the LORD’s side?” Moses had been up on the mount for an extended period of time, spending time with God face-to-face. What a privilege! The Lord had given the two tables of testimony, and Moses was to carry them back down to the people. While Moses and Joshua were gone, Aaron took matters into his own hands and told the people to bring him golden earrings from which he crafted a molted calf for the people to worship as their god.
God was angry. Moses was angry. The people had corrupted themselves. They had turned aside out of the way, which the Lord had commanded them, and they chose to create a false idol instead of worshipping the One True God. The God Who had sent the 10 plagues unto Egypt, brought them across the Red Sea, provided food for them in the wilderness, and had performed miracles before their very eyes…yet they chose to disobey.
After Moses rebuked them, he asked, “Who is on the LORD’s side?” It was obvious not many were at this point. The Levites were the only ones that came forward. They wanted to serve the One True God.
If a modern day Moses was to ask the same question today to the people of America “Who is on the LORD’s side?” how many would come forward? Considering the state of our country today, there would most likely be very few modern day Levites among us.
President Abraham Lincoln knew that as great as it is to have the Lord on our side, it is more important to make sure that we are on God’s side.
“Sir, my concern is not whether God is on our side; my greatest concern is to be on God’s side, for God is always right.” Abraham Lincoln
When the day comes that we are asked, “Who is on the LORD’s side?”…
Will you choose to stand?
Will you choose to fight?
When that day comes, let’s answer like Peter and the other apostles did when they were questioned…
“Saying, Did not we straitly command you that ye should not teach in this name? and, behold, ye have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine, and intend to bring this man’s blood upon us. Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men.”
Let’s fill our Jerusalem with the Gospel today. The day is coming when we will have to choose whether to obey the laws of the land or to obey what God has sent us to do.
Are you on the LORD’s side today?
Judges 17-18 | Acts 27 | Psalm 85
“The LORD is on my side; I will not fear: what can man do unto me?”
What comforting words to read from the Word of God! When we live by this principle we can obtain fearlessness to the things of this world and those around us. We can be fearless because we have the Lord on our side.
David was a man after God’s heart. When he was down and discouraged he did not look around to find help, he looked up! After his wives were taken captive, he did not look to his friends for help and encouragement.
I Samuel 30:6
“And David was greatly distressed; for the people spake of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and for his daughters: but David encouraged himself in the Lord his God.”
David encouraged himself by seeking the Lord his God. We can do the same by daily seeking encouragement from God’s Word.
David knew that he had enemies. He was reminded of that quite often. If you’ve ever tried to do something for the Lord, you can relate with David. Whenever we strive to make a difference and reach people with the Gospel, we find out who our friends are. Most of the conflict in the ministry does not come from outside the church, but within. It’s a sad thought, but it’s often the truth. Praise God that no matter where our conflict comes from, we can press on because the Lord is on our side!
“In God have I put my trust: I will not be afraid what man can do unto me.”
When you get fearful say, “The LORD is on my side!”
When you are doubtful say, “The LORD is on my side!”
When you feel surrounded by your enemies say, “The LORD is on my side!”
“What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?”
Judges 15-16 | Acts 26 | Psalm 84
“My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience.”
For those times when it seems like our adversary is working overtime on us, James tells us that we should count it all joy! Easier said than done, right?
When our faith is tried, it gives us patience. We’ve all heard not to pray for patience, because God is sure to bring something into our lives to teach us to be patient as we wait. This is one lesson that is very hard for our flesh to learn.
There are no coincidences within the Word of God, so it’s interesting to find that there are three words to describe how much of our temptations and trials we should turn to joy… Count. It. All. Not just a few of our trials or some of them, we are to count them ALL.
I Thessalonians 5:17
“In every thing give thanks.”
As hard as it is sometimes we can find the good whether we can see it or not. Look for the bright side of your situation. The rainbow in the midst of the storm. Ask God to show you His purpose. Ask Him to help you learn from the circumstances and allow you to grow in His grace.
Not only are there three words to describe how much, there are three letters to describe what to turn our trials into… J-O-Y. Wondering how to find real joy? Put Jesus first in your life, others second, and yourself last.
When you find yourself struggling to find the good, wondering what purpose God could possibility have in the midst of your surroundings…count to three. 1-2-3.
Where can you be reminded of this Truth? James 1:2-3
1-2-3. Count it ALL J-O-Y today.
Judges 13-14 | Acts 25 | Psalm 83
I Peter 5:8-9
“Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: Whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world.”
There is someone who wants to keep us from coming boldly to the throne of grace...our adversary the devil. The god of this world wants to do anything within his power to distract us and delay us from accessing the throne room. He knows that it is there that we obtain mercy and there that we find grace to help us in our times of need.
Peter warns us that our enemy walketh about. He is still walking and roaring around us today just as he did with Peter and the disciples. He wants to devour us. He wants to defeat us before he is defeated.
When he is discouraged and feels defeated, my pastor often says “I’ve read the back of the Book, we win and Satan loses!” Our enemy will one day have his walking about privileges revoked and he will be cast into the lake of fire. What a day that will be!
“And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever.”
Every single person on this earth will have to bow their knee and confess that Jesus Christ is Lord.
“That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”
We will all bow before Him. The question is…when? We have the choice and free will to decide ourselves when we will bow our knee. We can realize that we are all sinners, and it was because of our sin that Christ had to pay the debt that we could not pay ourselves. We can choose to believe in His sacrifice and trust that He is the only way we can get to Heaven. We can choose to bow now; or, we can choose to wait. If we choose to reject and refuse to bow our knee to Him now, we will bow our knee to Him before we are cast into our eternal punishment the lake of fire. This is the same lake of fire that the devil will be cast into. If we choose to reject Christ, we will spend eternity in the lake of fire with the devil. Separated from God forever. Don’t wait ‘til then! If you see yourself as a sinner, you can choose to bow your knee now. Confess to Him. Choose Him as your Saviour!
Once we choose to bow our knee to Him and claim Him as our Saviour, the devil knows that he cannot change our eternal fate; but he will seek to make our life miserable and distract us from God’s purpose for our lives.
After Peter warns us that we have an active adversary, he encourages us to resist him. How can we do this? By our faith in Christ! We must be stedfast, unmoveable and always abound in the work of our Lord. Our labour is not in vain! Our afflictions are for His glory. Satan cannot attack us without the Lord’s permission. Remember Job? Satan went to ask God before he could touch him. Despite Job’s circumstances, he remained faithful; and because of his stedfast faithfulness, God rewarded his efforts by restoring his health and his household. If you feel like Job today, God can do the same thing for you.
The afflictions that we face in this life are for our good and for His glory.
Resist the enemy’s attack on your mind, your body, and your soul.
“Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.”
He cannot win with Jesus Christ on our side!
Judges 11-12 | Acts 24 | Psalm 82
“Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.”
In today’s passage we find the explanation for why we can bring our petitions to the Lord. We have a Great High Priest that is sitting on the right hand of the Father. Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God was touched with the feelings of our infirmities. He was tempted in all points just as we are today; yet He did not sin. It is because of His sinless sacrifice that we can come boldly to the throne of grace. It is there that we can obtain mercy when we confess our sins, and it is there that we can find grace to help us in our time of need.
We have access to the throne of grace continually. The Father’s ears are always open to our cry.
“The eyes of the Lord are upon the righteous, and his ears are open unto their cry.”
“In my distress I called upon the Lord, and cried unto my God: he heard my voice out of his temple, and my cry came before him, even into his ears.”
He is always waiting to hear from us. Have you ever wished that a friend would call you, yet the call never came? Imagine how God feels when we do not acknowledge much less use our privilege of access to His throne room. When we call upon Him we never have to leave a voicemail.
“Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and show thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.”
If we call, He will answer. Here we have another conditional promise. He cannot answer us unless we first call upon Him. Because we can call on the Lord, and because He will always answer, this should strengthen our love for Him. We see an example of this from the psalmist in Psalm 116.
“I love the Lord, because he hath heard my voice and my supplications. Because he hath inclined his ear unto me, therefore will I call upon him as long as I live.”
Just as the relationship between you and your best friend is strengthened by communication, our walk and relationship with the Lord is strengthened when we call upon Him. Our love grows as we call out to Him.
Do you need mercy? You can obtain it at the throne of grace.
Do you need help in your time of need? You can find it at the throne of grace.
Take time today to boldly access the throne of grace.
Judges 9-10 | Acts 23 | Psalm 81
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