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DAILY DEVOTIONAL – Wednesday, October 2, 2019
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May you find comfort, encouragement, guidance, hope, inspiration, love, and peace – https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/. May you also find answers to your question(s) through the Scriptures that address every situation you face, and help with your problems. Deb ♥
Dear Lord, open our hearts and our minds to the power of Your Word, which as we read, we may know, understand, and obey Your Word for us today. We pray in Jesus’ name. Amen. (Author unknown)
Today’s scripture reading:
God’s covenant promise to Abraham and Isaac was offered to Jacob as well. But it was not enough to be Abraham’s grandson; Jacob had to establish his own personal relationship with God. God has no grandchildren; each of us must have a personal relationship with Him. It is not enough to hear wonderful stories about Christians in your family. You need to become part of the story yourself (see [* below] Galatians 3:6-7).
Was Jacob trying to bargain with God? It is possible that he, in his ignorance of how to worship and serve God, treated God like a servant who would perform a service for a tip. More likely, Jacob was not bargaining but pledging his future to God. He may have been saying, in effect, “Because you have blessed me, I will follow you.” Whether Jacob was bargaining or pledging, God blessed him. But God also had some difficult lessons for Jacob to learn. (NLT)
Genesis 28:10-22– Meanwhile, Jacob left Beersheba and traveled toward Haran. At sundown he arrived at a good place to set up camp and stopped there for the night. Jacob found a stone for a pillow and lay down to sleep. As he slept, he dreamed of a stairway that reached from earth to heaven. And he saw the angels of God going up and down on it.
At the top of the stairway stood the Lord, and he said, “I am the Lord, the God of your grandfather Abraham and the God of your father, Isaac. The ground you are lying on belongs to you. I will give it to you and your descendants. Your descendants will be as numerous as the dust of the earth! They will cover the land from east to west and from north to south. All the families of the earth will be blessed through you and your descendants. What’s more, I will be with you, and I will protect you wherever you go. I will someday bring you safely back to this land. I will be with you constantly until I have finished giving you everything I have promised.”
Then Jacob woke up and said, “Surely the Lord is in this place, and I wasn’t even aware of it.” He was afraid and said, “What an awesome place this is! It is none other than the house of God—the gateway to heaven!” The next morning he got up very early. He took the stone he had used as a pillow and set it upright as a memorial pillar. Then he poured olive oil over it. He named the place Bethel—“house of God”—though the name of the nearby village was Luz.
Then Jacob made this vow: “If God will be with me and protect me on this journey and give me food and clothing, and if he will bring me back safely to my father, then I will make the Lord my God. This memorial pillar will become a place for worshiping God, and I will give God a tenth of everything he gives me.”
* The main argument of the Judaizers was that Gentiles had to become Jews in order to become Christians. Paul exposed the flaw in this argument by showing that real children of Abraham are those who have faith, not those who keep the law. Abraham himself was saved by his faith. All believers in every age and from every nation share Abraham’s blessing. This is a comforting promise, a great heritage for us, and a solid foundation for living. (NLT)
Galatians 3:6-7 – In the same way, “Abraham believed God, so God declared him righteous because of his faith.” The real children of Abraham, then, are all those who put their faith in God.
Quoted verse: The Lord will guide you continually, and satisfy your needs in parched places, and make your bones strong. – Isaiah 58:11 (NRSV)
“Story” – Karen Lewis (Florida, USA) titled her story “A LONG WAY FROM HOME;” here is Karen’s story:
“I was 31 years old and at a major crossroads in my life. For the previous four years I had been teaching on an island in the South Pacific, and my contract was coming to an end. My house was isolated from the village. I had no telephone and no church family. I was newly divorced and soon to be unemployed. Although I was thousands of miles from home, I felt close to God.
“As I thought about my uncertain future, I walked up the dirt road with the blue sky overhead and sunshine on my face. I asked God for direction. Should I go back to live with my parents in the United States? Should I return to college? Should I look for another job overseas? What should I do?
“The answer came soundlessly but clearly: ‘Do as you choose. Just remember that I am with you, and whatever you do, do it with me.’ Peace and reassurance flowed into me. I would find a direction for my future, and I would be fine.
“Forty years have passed since that day. It is just as God said to Jacob, ‘I am with you and will watch over you wherever you go’ (NIV). As I look back, I see God’s loving presence in every step of my life’s journey.”
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY – Whatever I do, God will be by my side.
Prayer: Dear God, it is a great comfort to know that you are with us and will never leave us. Thank you for your faithfulness to us. Amen.
Prayer Focus: SOMEONE NEEDING TO FIND A NEW JOB
To read other stories in The Upper Room, click on the following link: http://devotional.upperroom.org/