Are You Following the Right Lights?

“Then Jesus spoke to them again, ‘I am the light of the world. Anyone who follows Me will never walk in the darkness but will have the light of life.'” (John 8:12)

I received an email from a friend recently that contained the following “joke.” It seems this girl who was driving over the mountains suddenly was caught in a snowstorm. She became frightened and pulled off to the side of the road. Suddenly, she peered ahead and saw the lights of a snowplow. What luck! She drove slowly over to where the plow was and kept as close to is as she could while it removed snow from the road. At times the heavy snowfall almost cut off her view, but her faithful guide continued to lead the way. After some time, the plow stopped, and its driver got out and walked over to her car. “Lady, where do you think you are going?”

“I’m on my way back to the interstate,” she replied. “Well,” the snow plow driver said, “You will never get there by following me. I’m just plowing this parking lot for Walmart!”

That poor girl was following the lights of the snow plow — unfortunately, the plow was not going anywhere. I think that happens all the time in today’s world. There is somebody constantly claiming to have “the light” that will lead people out of the darkness. And there are plenty of folks who are looking for “the light” that will guide them safely back to the road they should be traveling. Unfortunately most of those who claim to have “the light” are going in the wrong direction themselves! If you follow them, you end up in more trouble than you were in when you started.

Jesus said that He is the Light of the world. The Bible is very clear. If you will follow the true LIGHT, you will not walk in darkness. You will most likely meet someone this week who is struggling to find their way in the darkness. I hope you will point them to the Light of the World! There is only one way out of the world’s darkness and it is through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.

Which light are YOU following?

Have a great Thursday.

Are you listening?

“Carry one another’s burdens; in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.” (Galatians 6:2)

President Franklin Roosevelt once became tired of the smiling superficiality that accompanied many White House receptions. On this particular evening he decided to see whether or not anyone was actually paying attention to what he said. As he shook hands with each guest filing through the line, he smiled real big and said, “I murdered my grandmother this morning.” No one even noticed. They just gave the usual protocol, “How lovely!” or “Keep up the good work.” Finally, the ambassador from Bolivia came through the line. When FDR told of his scandalous deed, the ambassador leaned in and tactfully commented, “I’m sure she had it coming Mr. President.”

How well do you listen when someone is talking to you? We are told in Scripture that as believers, we are to “carry one another’s burdens.” One way to do that is by being a good listener. When we really listen to someone, we say to them that their concerns and their problems matter to us. Effective caregivers are people who have developed the skill of listening.

I’ve learned that I’m often unable to “fix” the problems of all the people I meet who are hurting — but I can listen. We can give authenticity to the feelings of those who are lonely or hurt. We can express the love of Christ by simply listening.

At some point in your life, you will need someone to listen to you. Why not begin today to cultivate relationships by listening to others. Today you may need to bear the burden of a friend, but tomorrow you may need that same friend to help bear your burden. 

Some wise sage said, “Talking to yourself isn’t always a sign of old age. In this day and time it may be the only way to be sure someone is listening.”

Have a great Wednesday.

Keeping Watch Over a Dangerous Door

“Lord, set up a guard for my mouth; keep watch at the door of my lips.” (Psalm 141:3)

Nothing is more often opened by mistake than the human mouth! For this reason, the prayer of David in our verse today is quite appropriate. David’s desire in this prayer is that no evil word might pass from his mouth. But I believe this goes much deeper than just posting a guard at the door of my mouth. I think the issue resides farther in — down in my heart.

Jesus said, “Nothing that goes into a person from outside can defile him, but the things that come out of a person are what defile him. Then He said, ‘What comes out of a person — that defiles him. From from within, out of people’s hearts, come evil thoughts, sexual immoralities, thefts, murders, adulteries, greed, evil actions, deceit promiscuity, stinginess, blasphemy, pride, and foolishness. All these evil things come from within and defile a person.'” (Mark 7:15; 20-23). When we solve the problem of the heart, our speech will no longer give us so much trouble. God notes every sentence that comes from our lips and the Bible warns us that one day we will have to give an account for every word we say.

I meet people every day who believe they have a “RIGHT” to say whatever they think. One such man met John Wesley once and said, “Wesley, I pride myself in speaking my mind; that is my talent.” Mr. Wesley replied, “Well sir, I’m sure the Lord wouldn’t mind at all if you buried that talent.” Our words literally display our lives — who we are and what we believe.

Words are so powerful. They have the power to start and stop wars, create and relieve stress, express love and hatred, build up friendships or tear them down. With our words we can praise and worship God, and that same person can leave church and cuss like a sailor (no offense to sailors).

One of my ministry heroes, Dr. W.A. Criswell said this about our words and our tongues: “There are many people have never set fire to a man burned at the stake; they have never clapped their hands at the shrieks of those who in agony were being torn apart by a ferocious lion in some coliseum. There are people who have never beat the drums to drown out the agonizing cry of those who were offered to the fiery god of Molech; but there are people without number who assassinate friends, neighbors, and acquaintances by untrue tale-bearing, vicious and evil words…I do not think there is anyone of us but has felt the sting of unkind words.”

Today (and every day), ask God to set a guard over our mouth and let’s watch our words. Remember, God is listening to every word and thought! William Norris said, “If your lips would keep from slips, five things observe with care: to whom you speak; of whom you speak; and how, and when and where.”

Have a great Tuesday.

Spiritually Evaluated

“But the unbeliever does not welcome what comes from God’s Spirit, because it is foolishness to him; he is not able to understand it since it is evaluated spiritually” (I Corinthians 2:14). 

If you have known me very long, you know I place a great emphasis on the importance of studying the Bible. In order for you and me to understand the spiritual things God has placed in His Word, we must receive and understand them. Paul tells us that the way we receive these spiritual truths is by the work of the Holy Spirit. It is possible to read the Bible — every translation and version — and still not understand what we read. It is possible to study the Bible by reading every commentary and by memorizing long passages of the text, and still not understand it. The religious leaders of Jesus’ day — the Scribes and Pharisees — were well trained in the Old Testament, and they still missed the fact that Jesus was the promised Messiah!

Before you begin your daily Bible reading, you should first stop and pray that the Holy Spirit would help you evaluate what you read. Ask the Holy Spirit to show you the things that God wants to reveal to you. In order to understand the Scripture, we must diligently study, using sound principles of interpretation — but we must also absolutely have the presence and power of the Holy Spirit to help us understand. Often that means we will have to wait on God to show us the meaning. In our natural condition, it is impossible for us to understand the things of God. 

There are two excellent examples of this in the Bible. In John 3, Jesus is having a conversation with Nicodemus (a well-educated religious leader). As Jesus explained the new birth to Nicodemus, he seemed confused. He was having difficulty understanding the spiritual principles Jesus was teaching. At one point, Jesus said to him, “If I have told you about things that happen on earth and you don’t believe, how will you believe if I tell you about things of heaven?” (John 3:12). Nicodemus needed to evaluate spiritual things spiritually and at that point, he was incapable of doing that.

The other example occurs in Acts 8. Philip was in the midst of a great revival in Jerusalem when the Lord came to him and told him to go south to the desert road between Jerusalem and Gaza. On that road, Philip met the Ethiopian eunuch. The eunuch had a copy of God’s Word and was reading the prophecy of Isaiah. He was reading in Isaiah 53 which paints the wonderful picture of Calvary.  When Phillip met the man he asked if he understood what he was reading. The Ethiopian man replied, “How can I unless someone guides me?” Philip came alongside the Ethiopian and by the power and presence of the Holy Spirit explained the Scripture to the man and he was saved and baptized.

Listen…you may have a wonderful mind and a good education. You may even possess a theological degree. But that is not the foundation upon which we interpret Scripture. Paul says that the Word of God is “evaluated spiritually.” Many people want to emphasize one or the other — intellect or spirit. But you must have both. You cannot separate the Holy Spirit from the Word of God. Donald Gee said, “All Spirit and no Word, you blow up. All Word and no Spirit, you dry up. Word and Spirit — you grow up.”

Without the Holy Spirit, the Bible is just a dry, dead, foolish book. But WITH the Holy Spirit, the Bible is a living and powerful force that can literally change your life. Just like a physically blind man cannot see the sun, so a man without the Holy Spirit cannot see the SON!

As you study your Bible — stop and pray that the Holy Spirit will open the eyes of your understanding so that you can truly KNOW and INTERPRET God’s Word.

Have a great Monday.

What do you need to leave behind?

“A scribe approached Him and said, ‘Teacher, I will follow You wherever You go!’ Jesus told him, ‘Foxes have dens and birds of the sky have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay His head.’ ‘Lord,’ another of His disciples said, ‘first let me go bury my father.’ But Jesus told him, ‘Follow Me, and let the dead bury their own dead.'” (Matthew 8:19-22)

I heard Dr. Herschel Hobbs say once, “If you look back only to the road over which you have just come, your car will become a pile of junk metal.”

Recently, I was talking with a young man about his relationship with the Lord and he said that at this point in life he just couldn’t totally follow Christ because of the things he would have “leave” behind. He somehow believed that the things he was going to have to give up were greater than the blessings he would have received by giving his life to Christ. He was only looking back at the road over which he had come.

In Revelation 2:4, the Lord Jesus tells the church at Ephesus, “But I have this against you: You have abandoned the love you had at first.” That is truly a sad indictment not only on a church, but also for an individual believer. There certainly are some things we should abandon or leave behind, but to leave our “first love” is to suffer sure defeat in the Christian life.

If you study the Scripture, you find that many people left some things behind in order to do the will of God. For example…

Elisha lef the plow so he could be a prophet for God (I Kings 19:19-21)

Abram left Ur of the Chaldeans so that he could follow the leading of Jehovah and become the father of the nation from which our Savior would come (Genesis 12:1-9).

Joseph left his coat in the hands of Mrs. Potiphar rather than sacrifice his purity (Genesis 39:1-20).

David left Saul’s armor in exchange for a sling shot and some rocks. The result caused Goliath to lose his head! (I Samuel 17:39-50).

The Samaritan Woman left her water pot at the well because she finally received a drink of water that quenched the deepest thirst in her life. (John 4:7-30)

Over and over in the Scripture we find people who LEFT something only to discover that what they received was far greater than the thing they left. That is not only true in for those in Scripture but others as well. For example…

Billy Sunday left baseball to become an outstanding evangelist.

D.L. Moody left the shoe store to bring revival to America and to Europe.

Take a look at your life today. What is the Lord asking you to leave behind for His glory? Whatever it is, you can be sure of this — the blessings you receive by being obedient to Him will far outweigh whatever you may lose from an earthly standpoint.

Can we pray this prayer today?

All to Jesus I surrender,

Humbly at His feet I bow;

Worldly pleasures all forsaken,

Take me, Jesus, take me now.

Have a great Thursday.

Do YOU Believe?

“Then John’s disciples told him about all these things. So John summoned two of his disciples and sent them to the Lord, asking, ‘Are You the One who is to come, or should we look for someone else?'” (Luke 7:18-19)

You’ve probably heard the story of the famous tightrope walker named Blondin. In the late 1890s, Blondin strung a wire across Niagara Falls, and then, as ten thousand people watched, he inched his way along the wire from the Canadian side of the falls to the US side. When he got there, the crowd began shouting his name, “Blondin! Blondin! Blondin!” Finally he raised his arm, quieted the crowd and shouted to them, “I am Blondin! Do you believe in me?” The crowd shouted back, “We believe! We believe!”

Again, he quieted the crowd and once more he shouted to them, “I’m going back across the tightrope but this time I’m going to carry someone on my back. Do you believe I can do that?” The crowd yelled, “We believe! We believe!” Blondin quieted the crowd again and said, “Who then will volunteer to be that person?”

The crowd suddenly became quiet. It was easy for them to believe in Blondin after they had watched him accomplish his unbelievable feat…but when asked to trust their lives to him…their belief quickly faded into doubt.

The same thing is sometimes true in our relationship with God. There are times in life when believing God’s promises is easy. When He is doing great things in our midst…when He blesses us with a healthy family and life is good…in times like these it is easy to say “I believe in God…I trust in God.” But what about when tough times come? What about when it seems like we are walking a tightrope through life and that we are about to fall over the edge into despair…what then?

In times like these it if often hard to maintain our faith. It is difficult to trust Him with our lives and we often slip into periods when we doubt God and His promises…perhaps even His existence. And if this has ever happened to you, I’m here to tell you today that you are not alone!

John the Baptist, Jesus’ cousin had a period when he experienced some doubts. Our verse today says that he sent his disciples to Jesus with the question — “Are You the One who is to come, or should we look for someone else?” Of all the people in the Bible, John would seem to be the least likely one to experience to doubt. He was raised by loving, Godly parents. He KNEW for sure, what God’s will was for his life. An angel appeared to his daddy and told him that John would be the forerunner of the Messiah. John could actually go to the Old Testament Scriptures and read about HIMSELF! And yet, he still had to deal with doubt.

I don’t know about you — but that encourages me. When I experience those nagging doubts, I realize that I’m not some kind of oddity — I’m not alone. C. S. Lewis said, “To believe with certainty…one has to begin with doubting.” Paul said, “Test everything, hold on to the good” (I Thess. 5:21). Doubt actually can be a benefit. It can strengthen our faith and keep us from blindly following false teaching. I’m not suggesting that we should go out and doubt everything we believe. I’m simply saying that there is a right way to deal with the doubts that will come our way. If we respond properly, we will have a stronger faith.

Let me suggest three quick responses I have discovered that are helpful to me when doubts arise…

1. Study the Scripture! Don’t allow anything or anyone to shape your view of God but His Word.

2. Talk to trusted Christian friends about your doubts. Chances are, there are some Christian friends who have experienced some of the same struggles you have. They will be able to encourage you and help guide you to the Scriptures that will help you.

3. Don’t just go to people — go directly to GOD! That’s what John did. He sent his disciples directly to Jesus and said, “Are You the One?” Remember, God doesn’t condemn us when we doubt. If you are willing to accept His answers, God welcomes honest questioning.

I pray that these simple steps will help someone today who is struggling with some doubts.

Have a great Wednesday.

Fearfully and Wonderfully Made

“For it was You who created my inward parts; You knit me together in my mother’s womb. I will praise You because I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Your works are wonderful, and I know this very well.” (Psalm 139:13-14)

Instead of elevating an aberrant lifestyle choice to the level of a civil rights issue on Martin Luther King’s birthday, I would have much preferred that the President of the United States take a stand for the sanctity of life — ALL life. But politics is about votes not right or wrong. The oath of office was administered with the President’s hand resting on a Bible — a Bible that clearly says homosexuality is a sin and a Bible that clearly teaches that ALL life from conception until natural death is to be protected. Politics is never going to save this nation from the judgment of God.

On September 11, 2001 over 4,000 people were killed. They were future leaders of this nation — doctors who could have saved many. They were scientists who may have found the cure for cancer. They were evangelists who may have led thousands of people to the Lord. Their families and friends loved them. On September 11, 2001, evil people killed over 4,000 of our citizens without cause or provocation.

But here is another fact that you may or may not have known. On September 12, 2001, another 4,000 people were killed in this nation. It happened again on September 13th and 14th and 15th. Every day in America, 4,000 people are killed. These are unborn babies.

On September 11, 2001 terrorists killed nearly 4000 people and the outcry for justice was great — and rightly so. But I’m angered today that 4000 unborn babies are being killed EVERY DAY, and I see no weeping, no anger, no outcry for justice. I don’t even hear it mentioned by the very politicians who should be protecting them.

40 years ago today, the United States Supreme Court ruled that unborn babies were not worthy of protection and since then over 55 million babies have been murdered in their mother’s womb. On January 22, 1973, nine men became legislators, not interpreters of the law. On that day, they made it legal in the United States of America for babies to be killed. 

My friends, the abortion issue is NOT about economics. It is NOT about politics. I deeply regret that abortion has been so politicized. Abortion IS a moral and spiritual issue. Before this day is over, you will probably hear somebody say, “You can’t legislate morality.” May I simply say that is the most stupid statement I’ve every heard? Most of what we legislate is morality. When you make a law against theft — that’s morality. When you make a law against the abuse of children — that’s morality. When you make a law forbidding the murder of others — that’s morality. And when you make a law allowing the murder of little unborn babies — that’s morality.

What is the problem in America today? It is simply this…human life has very little value in our culture. For years, our children have been taught that human beings are nothing more than highly organized slime. Human beings are cosmic accidents. We have failed in teaching our children that the Bible clearly says that human beings have intrinsic dignity because we are created in the image of God. Too many people believe there is no Creator — no moral lawgiver and thus humans have no sacred value. 

The “Endangered Species Act” is a law passed by the Congress and signed by the President of the United Sates. It protects 3 amphibians, 56 birds, 7 clams, 2 crustaceans, 29 fish, 8 mammals, 21 reptiles, 2 snails and 42 plants — AND their unborn offspring. But not one unborn baby is protected! We will impose a fine on you is you kill baby kittens or baby rabbits but not one single fine has been issued for killing a baby before he or she was born. May God have mercy on our souls!

Our verse today teaches us that human life begins at conception. The nervous system of an unborn baby is in place by the 20th day. At 42 days, the skeletal system is complete and reflexes are present. The brain and the boy system are present at 8 weeks. At 9 weeks, a baby squints, swallows, moves its tongue and makes a fist. All body systems function by the 12th week inside the mother’s body. A baby inside a mother’s womb is a human being!

Think about the problem you have today if you have what is called the “pro-choice” position. Number one, you have to deal with the problem of murder. If you are pro-choice or if you support pro-choice candidates, you must deal with the problem of the sixth commandment — “Thou shalt not kill” (Exodus 20:13). Proverbs 6:17 says, “God hates hands that shed innocent blood.” If an unborn child is a human being, then to drown that child int he mother’s womb or to suck that child from the mother’s womb is to commit murder. You can use all the high-sounding words and arguments you want to use for it, but whether you use a shotgun or an abortionists’ needle — it’s still murder.

Today on the 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, what do Christians need to do? We need to teach our children the value of every human life — from conception to natural death. We need to support counseling and adoption agencies. We must reach out to unwed mothers and provide support and love for them. We need to expand day-care services and job training opportunities. We must publicize and praise abortion alternatives like adoption.

Most of all, we need to pray that God will send revival to this nation and that our leaders — both Democrats and Republicans will stand for life! We are indeed fearfully and wonderfully made. Let’s stand for those who are unable to stand for themselves. 

May God have mercy on us for the way we have treated the most vulnerable among us.

Don’t Panic — God is FAITHFUL!

“But she said, ‘As the Lord your God lives, I don’t have anything baked — only a handful of flour in the jar and a bit of oil in the jug. Just now, I am gathering a couple of sticks in order to go prepare it for myself and my son so we can eat it and die.'” (I Kings 17:12)

Have you ever felt like the widow of Zarephath? I know I sure have! This woman was facing a life-threatening ordeal. When Elijah came to Zarephath, this woman had already decided that the best thing that could happen to her and her son was for them to have their last meal and just die. Life seemed hopeless. Everywhere this woman looked, she only saw despair.

BUT — along came the prophet of God. Up until now, his life hadn’t been so hot either. Elijah had predicted the drought to King Ahab. God had sent him to the brook Cherith and the ravens had provided for him there. But eventually the brook dried up. There was no rain in the land and no water in the brook. But God was faithful to Elijah. He told him to go to Zarephath. In fact, God said to Elijah — “Get up, go to Zarephath that belongs to Sidon and stay there. Look, I have commanded a woman who is a widow to provide for you there” (I Kings 17:9).

Now I don’t know what Elijah expected when he got to Zarephath, but if had been me, I can tell you I certainly wouldn’t have expected THIS woman. In my own imagination I wonder if Elijah said, “I wonder where the woman is who is going to take care of me. I’m sure it can’t be THIS poor old soul. She’s down to her last meal. She’s in worse shape than me!” Unfortunately, I tend to think that way. Thankfully — Elijah didn’t.

The more I think about it — the more I’m afraid I may have just sat down with the widow and her boy and had one BIG pity party before we all just expired. But not Elijah. He told the woman to bring him some water and to make him a cake from the flour. He also told her to fix a cake for herself and her son (v. 13). 

I wonder what went through HER mind? “This is one crazy NUT! But what do I have to lose? It’s our last meal anyway.” Fortunately, God was in control (He always is) — and there was something about the prophet’s words that brought hope to her soul. In verse 14, Elijah said to her, “for this is what the Lord God of Israel says, ‘The flour jar will not become empty and the oil jug will not run dry until the day the Lord sends rain on the surface of the land.'”

The widow did what Elijah told her to do and sure enough — God was faithful! God was true to His promise and He miraculously fed the widow, her son and His prophet! If you continue to read in I Kings, you discover this is not the only miracle the woman experienced. Later one, God raised her son from the dead!

In Luke 18:27, Jesus said, “What is impossible with me is possible with God.” The widow of Zarephath put her life and the life of her son in God’s hands and He gave them their lives back. All because the prophet Elijah was faithful in believing God and proclaiming His message. When Cherith dries up — God always has a widow in Zarephath waiting to show you that He is still in control.

I don’t know what God may require of me today. But I KNOW this — God is faithful. He always keeps His promises. He always cares for His own. Even when the flour and the oil is about gone — God has a way of miraculously providing just what I need — exactly when I need it. The Good News for today is this — HE WILL DO THE SAME FOR YOU!

Dr. Martin Lloyd-Jones said, “Faith is the refusal to panic.” I think that’s a good word for a Monday morning.

Have a great day.

Praying Correctly…

“so My word that comes from My mouth will not return to Me empty, but it will accomplish what I please and will prosper in what I send it to do.” (Isaiah 55:11)

From my study of the Bible, it has become apparent to me that since the beginning of time, people have believed that God works when we pray. The Bible is filled with examples of prayers offered to God and His answer to those prayers. Many of the most spiritual men and women in history have written about the importance of prayer.

Andrew Murray wrote: “In relation to his people, God works only in answer to their prayer. Courtland Meyers said: “God’s greatest agency for the winning of men back to himself is the prayer of other men. How few ever enter into the positive, practical power of prayer! It is the mightiest force in the universe and the Christian world is blind to this fact.” The poet Tennyson wrote: “Prayer is like opening a shining gate between the great ocean and our little channels when the sea gathers itself together and flows in at full time.”

I’m afraid many of us are guilty of misusing and abusing the privilege of prayer because of senseless and useless prayers. Let me explain…we keep asking God for things which He has already promised to give us. Instead of claiming the promises and thanking God for His  marvelous works, we pray as if we have some question about the validity of His Word.

For example, our verse today makes it clear that we don’t have to ask God to “keep His Word.” In fact, praying that way is an insult to the integrity of God. I guess the thing that started me to thinking about this was something I recently heard someone pray. In the prayer, they asked God to “bless Your Word.” As I thought about that, I came to the conclusion that was a useless prayer. Why would we ask God to do something He has already said He was going to do? Isaiah 55:11 says that God is going to bless His Word. We simply need to thank Him for that promise and then start spreading the Word with the full assurance that it “will not return to Me empty, but it will accomplish what I please and will prosper in what I send it to do.”

Do you see my point? We try to act spiritual by praying for God to “bless Your Word,” or worse yet, we pray ASKING God about something He has already told us to do. You don’t need to pray about tithing — you need to tithe. You don’t need to ask God if He wants you to witness to your neighbor — you need to witness to your neighbor. It doesn’t increase our spirituality one bit when we try to sound spiritual and say, “I just need to pray and ask God if He wants me to do this or that.” If He has already told you to do it — JUST DO IT! If He has already promised something — just thank Him for it and move on.

Perhaps our problem is not in the promise but in us. We simply need to be faithful in proclaiming God’s Word — leaving the results to Him. We don’t have to “twist God’s arm” to get Him to do what He already has said He would do. The devil knows that our lack of faith clips our wings so we don’t fly as high as God intends. 

Let’s ask God to help us in our study of His Word so that we not only pray properly, but that we pray with the full knowledge that God is faithful and He will accomplish exactly what He wants. Thanks be to God!

Have a great Friday and a wonderful weekend. See you Monday.

Under God’s Control

“No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to humanity. God is faithful, and He will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation He will also provide a way of escape so that you are able to bear it.” (I Corinthians 10:13)

Have you ever heard of Samuel Plimsoll? His is not a very familiar name to most people, but he is an important person. Mr. Plimsoll was from England and in 1877, he sponsored the “merchant shipping act.” This action required all ships to bear a mark on their side, indicating how deeply they could sink into the water with their load of cargo without getting into difficulty on long trips. Mr. Plimsoll was known as “the sailor’s friend” because of his concern that many ships were carrying too much cargo. When overloaded, these ships would often sink when they encountered rough seas. The mark on the side of the ship indicating how much load the ship could bear is called the “Plimsoll mark.”

I’m thankful that God knows the “Plimsoll mark” in my life. He knows exactly how much I can handle before before I sink — and He never overloads me. One preacher said, “God keeps His tempted saints by His supporting mercy, or makes a way for them to escape by His delivering grace.”

In our verse for today, the most encouraging words to me are these…“God is faithful.” I’ve seen and experienced God’s faithfulness in the lives of others who were burdened and I’ve seen and experienced God’s faithfulness in my own life when I felt I was about to sink. God’s faithfulness assures me that I will never be burdened to the point that I cannot bear it. Spurgeon said, “God will either make the burden lighter, or the back stronger; He will diminish the need, or increase the supply.”

The promise of this verse has been tested over and over again in my life. Many times, I try to deal with problems and difficulties in my own strength. You know what happens? RIGHT  — my problems get worse! But when I look for the way of escape and when I allow God to help me and guide me, I find that I am able to make it through the difficulty. God never says that we will not have problems, He just promises that He will provide a way of escape — when we trust in Him.

Today, if you are experiencing an overload in your life — remember this: God knows where your “Plimsoll mark” is and He will never allow you to go through more than you can endure WITH HIS HELP. Instead of complaining and worrying about your problems, stop right now and thank God that He never goes beyond the overload mark in our lives.

Have a great Thursday.