Tag Archives: psalms

04. Ideas for daily devotions and Bible reading

Ideas for daily devotions and Bible reading. You’ve made a commitment to read the Bible each day. Do you read it from cover to cover, or is there a better plan?

Where do I start?

Here are some ideas to get you started

A Proverb a Day for Wisdom

There are 31 chapters in the book of Proverbs. This book contains the most profound wisdom man has ever known.

Plan to read a chapter each day, one for each day of the month. Read the one that corresponds to that day. For example, on the 17th of the month, read Proverbs 17.

If you miss a day, you don’t have to try to catch up. Just read the Proverb for the appointed day. You may want to read these Proverbs in a different translation each month.

A Psalm a Day to Drive the Devil Away

Years ago a pastor shared this item. I have no idea where the original source is, but it has been helpful to many. Just read the Psalm listed each day, and start over the next week. You will read the same seven Psalms every week. These Psalms were selected because they are so meaningful to the issues we face today.

Monday – Psalm 73 – “Problem of the prosperity of the wicked”
Tuesday – Psalm 103 – “Praise for all God’s blessings”
Wednesday – Psalm 37 – “Cool it! Walk by faith”
Thursday – Psalm 139 – “God’s all-seeing eye”
Friday – Psalm 122 – “Joyful anticipation of God’s house”
Saturday – Psalm 51 – “The need for cleansing”
Sunday – Psalm 43 – “Cleansed, and ready for worship and service”

Ideas for Branching Out

Don’t limit yourself to only Psalms or Proverbs however. You need a plan that will nurture you from all the Spiritual food groups of God’s Word. Here are some ways to accomplish that:

  • Use the concordance in the back of your Bible or a Bible promise book (several types of these are available in Christian bookstores) to find all the promises you can in the Bible. Determine which promises are unconditional and which ones are based upon a condition that we must meet.
  • Use your concordance to study the lives Bible people. Try to determine what made them great, or what made them fall short. Notice how God worked in their lives, and their responses. Learn from their examples.
  • Read and study one book of the Bible at a time. Read a chapter, or just a few verses each day. If you are new to Bible study, try starting with the book of St. John, then read Acts and continue on through the New Testament. Then go back to Genesis and begin reading the Old Testament.
  • When you come to the “begets and begots” and other passages which seem boring, just skip over these for now. God has them there for a reason, and some day you will want to go back and explore the truths hidden underneath their surface.
  • If you come to something you don’t understand, just try to apply the things you do understand. None of us understands the Bible completely. It has very simple as well as very profound truths in it. God will gradually teach us more and more as we read it. The things that are hard to understand at first will become easier to understand as we study the Bible as a whole.

How to Establish a Daily Quiet Time

Contents
00. How to establish a daily quiet time – Introduction
01. What is a quiet time, and why do I need it?
02. Finding time for daily devotions and Bible study
03. Selecting a Bible translation for daily study
04. Ideas for daily devotions and Bible reading
05. Online resources for your daily Bible study

Scripture taken from King James Version unless otherwise noted

09. If things still go wrong: You go right for you are blessed!

When things go wrong, you go right! Accept the “gift” of adversity through which God grows his children. Always remember “You are blessed!”

Daughters of Sarah Bible Study session 9 (1 Peter 3:13-5:11).

We Are Blessed

Some of us have done our best to be submissive, Godly wives, yet we find ourselves groping in the rubble of a broken home. We trusted in God. What went wrong? God has a precious and tender answer for us:

“Who is going to harm you if you are eager to do good? But even if you should suffer for what is right, you are blessed. Do not fear what they fear; do not be frightened” (1 Peter 3:13-14).

Can it be that even in what seems so wrong, “You are blessed”? Oh, yes! When a woman faithfully follows the Lord as best she can in a troubled marriage, God walks daily with her. She is called to a great faith. As she trusts God day by day, she learns that he is faithful to that trust.

“For the LORD watches over the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked will perish” (Psalm 1:6).

What greater opportunity to grow in faith than when the very foundation we’ve built our marriage on begins to crumble. What a comfort to know that even in this God watches over our way! When a woman is faithful to the Lord, God will multiply that faithfulness back to her many times over. She will begin to experience continual joy and peace in the midst of the pain.

“And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:7).

“You are blessed!” Peace and joy in the midst of suffering and a broken heart — can there be any greater blessing than this? As we are faithful in a troubled and sometimes broken marriage, we learn of God’s faithfulness as we could no other way.

“Therefore, since Christ suffered in his body, arm yourselves also with the same attitude, because he who has suffered in his body is done with sin. As a result, he does not live the rest of his earthly life for evil human desires, but rather for the will of God” (1 Peter 4:1-2).

Do not live for the things you desire (a beautiful marriage relationship.) Rather, live to fulfill the will of God for your life. God’s desire is that your marriage be made whole. But his greater desire is that you experience continual trust in and fellowship with him. Live for that!

Rather than envy those who have “solid Christian marriages,” begin to thank God for the blessings he has given you even in the painful times of your marriage. Remember, those “solid Christian marriages” struggle also. Some are much more shaky than they appear from the outside. Others are strong, but none is perfect. In every marriage you so envy, the wife is frustrated with her husband from time to time. He is sometimes annoyed with her. So do not envy. Rather be thankful for God’s blessing in the marriage where you are. You are blessed!

“Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms” (1 Peter 4:10).

The Bible speaks of gifts of the spirit. But in the context of 1 Peter 4, could it be that the gift here is the gift of adversity? What greater gift can the Lord give than to make life hard so we learn to trust him? As songwriter Andrae Crouch says in “Through it All”: “For if I had never had a problem, I would never know that God could solve them, and I would never know what faith in his word could do.”

How are we to use these gifts of suffering? By “faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms.” God will give you grace to live for him as you trust him through the heartbreak of a wayward child. God will give you grace to live for him as you hold his hand through the storm of a difficult marriage. God will give you grace to continue on for him if you experience the pain of the marriage you’ve worked for crumbling under your feet.

“Dear friends, do not be surprised at the painful trial you are suffering, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice that you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when his glory is revealed” (1 Peter 4:12-13).

This verse was written to a people who were suffering persecution for their faith. Ours is a different situation, but in a sense it is the same. Because of our commitment to the Lord Jesus Christ and to our husbands, we’ve tried to live for Christ in our marriages. We’ve not been perfect, but we’ve done our best. Many have followed Christ even as their husband followed the world. Some have been the only Christian in their homes.

“So then, those who suffer according to God’s will should commit themselves to their faithful Creator and continue to do good” (1 Peter 4:19).

What do you do when things go wrong? When things go wrong, you go right! Be humble toward your mate, and be willing to admit your own weaknesses in the marriage. Give your husband to the Lord, and continue to trust God moment by moment.

…clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because, ‘God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.’ Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.

And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.
–1 Peter 5:5-7, 10

Always remember, You are blessed!

Prayer

Lord, thank you for your faithfulness. Thank you that we have a hope and a purpose, and that you are not finished with us yet. Thank you that even in our own failures in our marriages, you receive us, forgive us, and help us to stand in your grace.

Please be with our husbands, and help them find your hand, Lord. Please help them to know your comfort. If it be possible, unite our husband’s hand, and ours, back together with yours. We know you have the power to do all things, so we give our husbands to you, trusting you to work in their hearts and ours to bring about your will.

Thank you, Lord, that because of you, we are blessed. Please help our husbands to know your blessing, too. Amen.

Table of Contents for Daughters of Sarah

Scripture taken from New International Version unless otherwise noted

21. Wondrous things: Though it linger, wait for it.

God can work in our children’s wrong choices. He can use evil influence to bring about good. God can reach us in our sin! We pray for our children, and we see God’s answers by faith.

“Though it linger, wait for it; it will certainly come and will not delay” (Habakkuk 2:3)

Worship Our Father, He Is Working

What can we do when our children stray and we don’t see God working? We can join the Psalmist when he says:

“Blessed be the LORD God, the God of Israel,
Who only does wondrous things!” (Psalm 72:18 NKJV)

God is always at work in our children’s lives, whether we see it or not, and God only does wondrous things! We cannot think of anything God has done that is not wondrous. God made everything from nothing.

Fix Your Faith in the Wonder

How wondrous the unsearchable galaxies that extend so far into space we can’t even begin to count them!

How wondrous the elusive microorganisms that challenge our most powerful microscopes to explore their detail!

How wondrous the human body that began as dust and returns to dust yet lives with such awesome splendor!

How wondrous the uniqueness of each blade of grass, each drop of rain, each human soul!

How wondrous that the God who reigns over all his creation would allow his most prized creation, mankind, the freedom to choose to rebel!

And wonder of wonders that this great God would redeem the creature by becoming the created and suffering the full penalty in himself for our rebellious choice!

This God–our God–is always at work to bring individuals into a love relationship with himself. We can be assured that God is doing something wondrous in our children’s lives right now.

Find Fulfillment in the Waiting

We don’t see everything that happens in our children’s lives. We don’t have access to God’s communication with them. We may not be aware of the witness God sent to our children yesterday. We can’t hear the words of a scripture that sounds over and over in their minds.

We can’t see all that God is doing. We must not assume that God is not working just because of our unawareness of his presence. On the contrary, we must assume that God is working because of his awareness of our need.

We can ask God to let us see a little glimpse of his activity in our children’s lives. We can begin to recognize everything that happens in our children’s lives as God’s working to bring our children to himself. Whatever is happening in our children’s lives, we are seeing God at work. The happening is God working!

God can even work in our children’s wrong choices. Our powerful God can use evil influence to bring about good. God can reach us in our sin!

Wield the Weapons of our Warfare

We can unleash God’s power through prayer. God has ordained prayer as the means by which his work is done on earth. Our prayers have the power to bind Satan and to free God’s Spirit to open our children’s eyes and draw them to Himself.

What a wonder that God would allow us this privilege to cooperate with Him through prayer!

There are many prayer promises. Here are just a few of them:

“And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Son may bring glory to the Father. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it” (John 14:13-14).

“If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you” (John 15:7).

“I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven” (Matthew 16:19).

“I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you” (Luke 10:19).

“For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms” (Ephesians 6:12).

“For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ” (2 Corinthians 10:3-5).

“This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us–whatever we ask–we know that we have what we asked of him” (1 John 5:14-15).

Application

What can we do when we don’t see God at work? We can praise the wonder of our God. We can recognize that what we do see is God’s work. We can cooperate with God through prayer. We can rest assured that God has already answered our prayers.

The drama of God’s work is unfolding day by day in this world captured by time. God’s answer is on its way, and we can see the vision through faith.

“Before they call I will answer; while they are still speaking I will hear” (Isaiah 65:24).

Thought for Today

“For the revelation awaits an appointed time; it speaks of the end and will not prove false. Though it linger, wait for it; it will certainly come and will not delay” (Habakkuk 2:3).

Question for Discussion

  1. What should we do when our children go farther and farther astray, and God doesn’t seem to be doing anything?
  2. Which prayer promise will you claim for your children today?

Called to Be a Mother – Contents

Scripture taken from New International Version unless otherwise noted