How Can We Be Troubled?

“When you really see Jesus, I defy you to doubt Him.”

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Today is Saturday, December 24, 2016. Christmas Eve!

Quote of the Day

“Maybe Christmas, the Grinch thought, doesn’t come from a store.” – Dr. Seuss

Word of the Day

Wassail – to drink to the health or success of; toast.

Today is Eggnog Day! I’ve already had some, this season, and I’m not sure I have any that is still good to drink. Who knows? I may brave the grocery store today, just to get some more. I do love eggnog. It’s especially good with some brandy added.

As I’ve already mentioned, today is Christmas Eve. The house smells wonderful, and the cooking will begin soon. C’s sister and her husband will be here, this evening, around 5:00 PM, as well as C’s niece and boyfriend. Hopefully, R & J will make it, too. We are planning turkey, ham, dressing, mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, corn casserole, pies, and who knows what else!

Tomorrow, we are going to Mineral Wells for Christmas with Mama. We plan to spend Sunday night and come back Monday. We’ll have more of the turkey and ham, mashed potatoes, and so on. I might make a sopapilla cheesecake, if I can squeeze in some time in the oven. It’s pretty booked for the day.

63 days until the first Spring Training game.
100 days until Opening Day.

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL

December 24–The Eve of the Nativity

Psa 57:8  Awake, my glory! Awake, O harp and lyre! I will awake the dawn!

O Lamb of God, that takes away the sins of the world, have mercy upon me.
O Lamb of God, that takes away the sins of the world, have mercy upon me.
O Lamb of God, that takes away the sins of the world, grant me your peace.

For you alone are the Holy One,
you alone are the Lord,
you alone are the Most High,
Jesus Christ,
with the Holy Spirit,
in the Glory of God the Father.

Psa 31:24  Be strong, and let your heart take courage, all you who wait for the LORD!

Luk 1:67-75  And his father Zechariah was filled with the Holy Spirit and prophesied, saying, “Blessed be the Lord God of Israel, for he has visited and redeemed his people and has raised up a horn of salvation for us in the house of his servant David, as he spoke by the mouth of his holy prophets from of old, that we should be saved from our enemies and from the hand of all who hate us; to show the mercy promised to our fathers and to remember his holy covenant, the oath that he swore to our father Abraham, to grant us that we, being delivered from the hand of our enemies, might serve him without fear, in holiness and righteousness before him all our days.

Psa 40:6-8  In sacrifice and offering you have not delighted, but you have given me an open ear. Burnt offering and sin offering you have not required. Then I said, “Behold, I have come; in the scroll of the book it is written of me: I delight to do your will, O my God; your law is within my heart.”

(From Praying With the Psalms)

Psa 146:5-10  Blessed is he whose help is the God of Jacob, whose hope is in the LORD his God, who made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, who keeps faith forever; who executes justice for the oppressed, who gives food to the hungry. The LORD sets the prisoners free; the LORD opens the eyes of the blind. The LORD lifts up those who are bowed down; the LORD loves the righteous. The LORD watches over the sojourners; he upholds the widow and the fatherless, but the way of the wicked he brings to ruin. The LORD will reign forever, your God, O Zion, to all generations. Praise the LORD!

The word “blessed,” translated “happy” in some translations, is used at least twenty-five times in the Psalms, according to Peterson. In Psalm 1, it is the first word. This occurrence, in Psalm 146:5, is the last one. “It is one of the great and characteristic words for describing a person who centers life in God and experiences salvation by faith.”

“Lord, I thank you for the wide margins of happiness
that border the story of faith.
Your kind command ‘be of good cheer’ is easily obeyed
when I find your love in all my making and my growing (Matthew 9:2; 14:27; John 16:33; KJV). Amen.”

(From My Utmost For His Highest)

Col 3:3  For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.

The security of the life “hidden with Christ in God” is simpler than we want to make it. We speak as though it is the most difficult, “precarious thing,” when in fact, it is secure, “because it has Almighty God in and behind it.” It is more “precarious . . . to try and live without God.” Chambers says that, if we are truly born again, “it is the easiest thing to live in right relationship to God.” This is what Dallas Willard refers to as the “easy yoke.” We make it much harder than it needs to be, and I am “chief of sinners” when it comes to that.

We tend to see walking in the Spirit as a great mountain top that is difficult to attain. Once we get there, though, by God’s grace, we find that it is not a peak at all, but “a plateau where there is ample room to live and to grow.”

Chambers says, “When you really see Jesus, I defy you to doubt Him.” This is a heavy statement. Because, don’t we all doubt? Does that mean none of us has truly “seen” Jesus? His commands are not burdensome. “Let not your heart be troubled,” Jesus says. If we have truly seen him, how can our hearts be troubled, how can we doubt him? His words are real. Being a disciples means putting the words of Jesus into practice in our lives and finding them to be true.

Your life is hidden with Christ in God.

Father, I want to truly see Jesus! I believe that there are times in my life when I have “seen” Jesus, but the memory fades, the reality fades, and I begin to doubt again. My heart is less troubled than it used to be, these days, but I still find my self troubled about things, especially things that I have no control over. Which is most things. Calm my heart; untrouble my spirit. Teach me to always see and know the truth that, in Christ, my life is hidden in you, and there is nothing to doubt; nothing to be troubled about.

Even so, come, Lord Jesus!

“In returning and rest you shall be saved; in quietness and in trust shall be your strength.” . . . Therefore the LORD waits to be gracious to you, and therefore he exalts himself to show mercy to you. For the LORD is a God of justice; blessed are all those who wait for him. (Isaiah 30:15, 18)

Grace and peace, friends.

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