Encouragement for Thursday

On several occasions Pastor James has stated that he doesn’t watch the news on T.V. because it hurts him more than it helps him. I have the same attitude. These days the news itself is often depressing. Compounding the pain is the spin that the national news outlets put on the news. Newscasters not only want you to know the news, they want you to feel the same way about it that they do. I don’t appreciate the effort to steer me toward a particular political ideology. It is discouraging to see people in our country with no respect for God or His ways with as much influence as they have. Considering the general state of affairs, a scripture came to mind:

“I again saw under the sun that the race is not to the swift and the battle is not to the warriors, and neither is bread to the wise nor wealth to the discerning, nor favor to the skillful; for time and chance overtake them all. For indeed, a person does not know his time: like fish that are caught in a treacherous net and birds caught in a snare, so the sons of mankind are ensnared at an evil time when it suddenly falls on them.”

(Ecclesiastes (9:11-12, NASB)

Those who are in power may find themselves out of it at any given time. Solomon had seen enough and had enough God-given wisdom to know that peoples’ comfort in their own abilities, wealth and wisdom couldn’t be trusted. He also undoubtedly learned from the experiences and teaching of his father David. David knew that earthly power and wealth was fleeting, and that God valued righteousness above anything else.

“In the Lord I take refuge;

How can you say to my soul, “Flee as a bird to your mountain?

For, behold, the wicked bend the bow,

They have set their arrow on the string

To shoot in darkness at the upright in heart.

If the foundations are destroyed,

What can the righteous do?

The Lord is in His holy temple; the Lord’s throne is in heaven;

His eyes see, His eyelids test the sons of mankind.

The Lord tests the righteous and the wicked,

And His soul hates one who loves violence.

He will rain coals of fire upon the wicked,

And brimstone and burning wind will be the portion of their cup.

For the Lord is righteous, He loves righteousness;

The upright will see His face.”

(Psalm 11, NASB)

The Law and the Prophets taught us that we would never be able to fulfill the Law to the degree God requires to be considered righteous. Thankfully God knew our weakness and addressed our need.

“But now apart from the Law the righteousness of God has been revealed, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets, but it is the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all those who believe; for there is no distinction, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus, whom God displayed publicly as a propitiation in His blood through faith.”

(Romans 3:21-25a, NASB)

We get discouraged by watching the ungodly making decisions that affect our lives. We get discouraged when events lead our country away from His guidance instead of toward it. It is frustrating that many people in our country don’t know, or want to know God. We can be thankful that nothing escapes His sight. He knows the righteous and unrighteous and will deal with each one accordingly. I am thankful we are counted as righteous because of Christ’s righteousness and our relationship to Him. God knows His people and meets their needs. One day we will see His face!

Take heart and be encouraged!


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