EXPECT GOD, BE ENCOURAGED!

David was singing praises of thanksgiving to God in the previous psalm, but now he is running to God for help again.  “I run for dear life to you, God.”  “You are my hiding place”, David laments to God.  The battles we face in life come when we least expect it, but one piece of wisdom that we cling to is knowing we can expect God to be there.  He knows what we struggle with now and in the future.  God will use these trials to comfort, convict, challenge and encourage us to grow in His character through them.  We are not perfect people, but we are perfectly forgiven by Jesus Christ, God’s Son, who died for all our sin.  We live in an imperfect world but with the help of a perfect God!

WHAT TO EXPECT FROM GOD…

We can expect God to forgive us when sincerely ask in Jesus Name.

We can expect God to hear us when we humbly pray.

We can expect God to be found when we look for Him.

We can expect God to fight our battles when we ask for help.

We can expect God to help us in our troubles with other imperfect people.

We can expect God to give us wisdom, insight and understanding beyond ourselves.

We can expect God to give us peace right in the middle of the biggest storm we face.

We can expect God to increase our joy when we are saddened by circumstances beyond our control.

We can expect God to lead, guide and direct each step we take toward Him and His will for our lives.

We can expect our God to always be with us.

How do I know?  The Bible tells me so.  AND I have experienced God in all these ways and more!  Praise God who helps, protects, provides and guides!

Live expecting God to be with you.  Live expectant lives for God.  What does that mean, exactly?  “Prophetic events show the need to live each moment in Christlike readiness. In view of the sure promises of Christ’s return, as believers, we are to do more than merely be ready; we are to be expectant.”  –David Jeremiah, “How to live expectantly”

Vance Havner once suggested that in our day of “anarchy, apostasy and apathy,” expectant living means: “We need to take down our ‘Do Not Disturb’ signs and snap out of our stupor and awake from our apathy.”

God’s Word calls us to awake out of our sleep, and to walk in righteousness, in the light that Christ gives us (Romans 13:11; 1 Corinthians 15:34; Ephesians 5:14).

PAUSE TO PRAY

Am I living expectantly for Jesus’ return?  If not, why?

Am I living knowing God is with me and knows me inside and out? 

David calls out to God, “Take me seriously this time!”  Have we called out to God in this way?

Do we expect God to answer?

Worship and Wisdom, Psalms and Proverbs

Psalm 31, The Message

A David Psalm

1-2 I run to you, God; I run for dear life.
    Don’t let me down!
    Take me seriously this time!
Get down on my level and listen,
    and please—no procrastination!
Your granite cave, a hiding place,
    your high cliff aerie a place of safety.

3-5 You’re my cave to hide in,
    my cliff to climb.
Be my safe leader,
    be my true mountain guide.
Free me from hidden traps;
    I want to hide in you.
I’ve put my life in your hands.
    You won’t drop me,
    you’ll never let me down.

6-13 I hate all this silly religion,
    but you, God, I trust.
I’m leaping and singing in the circle of your love;
    you saw my pain,
    you disarmed my tormentors,
You didn’t leave me in their clutches
    but gave me room to breathe.

Be kind to me, God—
    I’m in deep, deep trouble again.
I’ve cried my eyes out;
    I feel hollow inside.
My life leaks away, groan by groan;
    my years fade out in sighs.
My troubles have worn me out,
    turned my bones to powder.

To my enemies I’m a monster;
    I’m ridiculed by the neighbors.
My friends are horrified;
    they cross the street to avoid me.
They want to blot me from memory,
    forget me like a corpse in a grave,
    discard me like a broken dish in the trash.
The street-talk gossip has me
    “criminally insane”!
Behind locked doors they plot
    how to ruin me for good.

14-18 Desperate, I throw myself on you:
    you are my God!
Hour by hour I place my days in your hand,
    safe from the hands out to get me.
Warm me, your servant, with a smile;
    save me because you love me.

Don’t embarrass me by not showing up;
    I’ve given you plenty of notice.
Embarrass the wicked, stand them up,
    leave them stupidly shaking their heads
    as they drift down to hell.
Gag those loudmouthed liars
    who heckle me, your follower,
    with jeers and catcalls.

19-22 What a stack of blessing you have piled up
    for those who worship you,
Ready and waiting for all who run to you
    to escape an unkind world.
You hide them safely away
    from the opposition.
As you slam the door on those oily, mocking faces,
    you silence the poisonous gossip.

Blessed God!
    His love is the wonder of the world.
Trapped by a siege, I panicked.
    “Out of sight, out of mind,” I said.
But you heard me say it,
    you heard and listened.

23 Love God, all you saints;
    God takes care of all who stay close to him,
But he pays back in full
    those arrogant enough to go it alone.

24 Be brave. Be strong. Don’t give up.
    Expect God to get here soon.

TRUTH:  God takes care of all who stay close to him.  Expect God to get here soon.  In the meantime, be brave, strong and don’t give up.

The wisdom of proverb 15 follows this thought of expectancy knowing God does not miss a moment in our lives!  He knows us.  He knows the people around us.  He knows what we face each day.  He gives wisdom…

Proverb 15:1-11, The Message

God Doesn’t Miss a Thing

A gentle response defuses anger,
    but a sharp tongue kindles a temper-fire.

Knowledge flows like spring water from the wise;
    fools are leaky faucets, dripping nonsense.

God doesn’t miss a thing—
    he’s alert to good and evil alike.

Kind words heal and help;
    cutting words wound and maim.

Moral dropouts won’t listen to their elders;
    welcoming correction is a mark of good sense.

The lives of God-loyal people flourish;
    a misspent life is soon bankrupt.

Perceptive words spread knowledge;
    fools are hollow—there’s nothing to them.

God can’t stand pious poses,
    but he delights in genuine prayers.

A life frittered away disgusts God;
    he loves those who run straight for the finish line.

10 It’s a school of hard knocks for those who leave God’s path,
    a dead-end street for those who hate God’s rules.

11 Even hell holds no secrets from God—
    do you think he can’t read human hearts?

WISDOM:  Knowing and realizing that God doesn’t miss a thing going on in our lives brings humbly to truth.  Accept the blame, right the wrong, make peace the best you can, forgive and be forgiven and then move on with God, not against Him.  There are no secrets from God.  He knows us better than we know ourselves.  He reads human hearts and understands us.  Know God who knows us.  Be honest in prayer, thought and behavior.  That’s what God wants.  That’s what is best for us.

Abba Father,

What a wonderful God you are that you would care for us so much!  We could wander around wondering about life, but You provide help in every way we need.  You are God and we are not.  You know all we need to know.  You are with us and we thank you and praise you.  You are our hiding place until we understand what we need to do next.  You are love, joy, peace.  You are a gracious God full of mercy for our missteps and sinful ways.  Thank you for forgiveness and restoration.  Thank you for the expectant hope of your return with life eternal.  Thank you for saving us right now.

In Jesus Name, Amen!  I believe!

About randscallawayffm

Randy and Susan co founded Finding Focus Ministries in 2006. Their goal as former full time pastors, is to serve and provide spiritual encouragement and focus to those on the "front lines" of ministry. Extensive experience being on both sides of ministry, paid and volunteer, on the mission fields of other countries as well as the United States, helps them bring a different perspective to those who need it most. Need a lift? Call us 260 229 2276.
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