Don’t Look Back

Today is April 6, 2017. Ten days until Easter.

Quote of the Day

“When love is not madness, it is not love.” ~ Pedro Calderon de la Barca

Word of the Day

Cloying ~ disgusting or distasteful by reason of excess; also : excessively sweet or sentimental.

Today is Plan Your Epitaph Day. Every year when this rolls around, I think, “Confusion will be my epitaph.”

Sam Dyson blew a save for the Rangers, last night. They went into the top of the ninth inning with a 6-4 lead, but Dyson walked in a run, then gave up a grand slam home run. Final score, Cleveland 9, Texas 6. Rangers are now 0-3 to begin the season. They have a day off today, and begin a series with Oakland tomorrow night.

The Red Sox and Pirates played for twelve innings last night, and the game was scoreless until the Sox won off of a Sandy Leon home run in the bottom of the twelfth inning. Wow. I couldn’t stay up for the finish, so I didn’t know who won until this morning. The Sox are now 2-0 and play the Pirates again tonight. Tomorrow, they will be in Detroit. Tonight, Edgar Rodriguez will take the mound for the Sox.

Nothing going on tonight or tomorrow night, for us, but Saturday, we will be traveling to Mineral Wells to celebrate birthdays of my mother and R.

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL AND PRAYERS

Oh come, let us worship and bow down; let us kneel before the LORD, our Maker! 
For he is our God, and we are the people of his pasture, and the sheep of his hand.

Psalm 95:6-7
So teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom.
Psalm 90:12
The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. 
Psalm 18:2
I will look with favor on the faithful in the land, that they may dwell with me; he who walks in the way that is blameless shall minister to me.
Psalm 101:6

(From The President’s Devotional)

“When the LORD your God brings you into the land that you are entering to take possession of it, and clears away many nations before you, the Hittites, the Girgashites, the Amorites, the Canaanites, the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites, seven nations more numerous and mightier than you, and when the LORD your God gives them over to you, and you defeat them, then you must devote them to complete destruction. You shall make no covenant with them and show no mercy to them. You shall not intermarry with them, giving your daughters to their sons or taking their daughters for your sons . . .For you are a people holy to the LORD your God. The LORD your God has chosen you to be a people for his treasured possession.”
Deuteronomy 7:1-3, 6

“We often derail our own progress, right at the moments of success,” says Joshua DuBois.

When Israel made it into the Promised Land, God warned them in the passage above. Don’t marry the people you have conquered. They will look good, it will seem right, but don’t do it. It will be a distraction. Keep moving forward, don’t attach yourselves to things from your past.

This is a good lesson for us today. “Right when things are going well, and God is expanding our territory, we will be tempted to turn around, to remember our old ways, to look back.”

But we must remember that this victory, whatever it may be, is only an “interim victory, a waypoint on the journey to a conquering greatness. Let’s not let the intoxication of momentary triumph distract us from our broader purpose.”

“Dear God, thank you for the victories behind me, but I know there are many more ahead. Help me to not be distracted; keep my eyes on the prize. Amen.” ~ Joshua Dubois

Dear Father, how well I know the pain of stumbling defeat right on the heels of victory. Your people in the Old Testament experienced this multiple times, perhaps most embarrassingly when they rushed into Ai after the great victory of Jericho. I pray for the focus and stability to keep pressing forward when I experience any victory, whether great or small. Let me not be distracted by too much celebration, but let me keep pressing on, as Paul says. Let me press on to the finish line, wherever that may be. May it be said that I “finished strong.”
Even so, come, Lord Jesus!

The LORD bless you and keep you; the LORD make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you; the LORD lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace.

Grace and peace, friends.

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