May 30, 2019
In 2 Samuel 15, David was running from his own son, Absalom. He was retreating from his city where he was king into the wilderness. Someone informed him that one of his trusted counselors, Ahithophel, had defected to Absalom. David uttered a simple request to the Lord: "O Lord, I pray, make the counsel of Ahithophel foolishness" (verse 31).
God answered that prayer. When Absalom comes into the city, here is what his counselor said:
20 Then Absalom said to Ahithophel, “Give your advice. What shall we do?”
21 Ahithophel said to Absalom, “Go in to your father’s concubines, whom he has left to keep the house; then all Israel will hear that you have made yourself odious to your father. The hands of all who are with you will also be strengthened.”
22 So they pitched a tent for Absalom on the roof, and Absalom went in to his father’s concubines in the sight of all Israel.
This is typical, godless, immature counsel. "Let's go party and have sex!" It was not like this prophet, for he had been used of God in David's day. But God was answering David's prayer. It was utter foolishness. David knew that if Absalom got wrong counsel, it would thwart his foolish attempts to rule the nation, which it ultimately did. David understood that everything hinged upon who surrounded you.
... determine so much of our lives. How many people have gotten in trouble because they accepted a foolish challenge from a supposed friend? Listened to counsel that was directly opposed to the will of God? Missed the mark on a dare? For instance, I have seen many people make foolish choices in their marriages—often resulting in an unbiblical divorce—because they listened to another person who had done the same. Misery loves company.
... with godly counselors. I have had many great counselors in my life for many years. My dad and brothers, all pastors and wise men, have helped me. I have three pastor friends that I live in weekly accountability with that have been my closest advisors for years. And now, my own sons and sons-in-law are coming to the point where I am not only counseling them, but they are wisely encouraging and helping me.
The glory is all to God for any good in my life, but thanksgiving goes deeply from my heart to these men who have been used of God to help me stay on the right path.
No one should be so proud that they think they don't need the help of godly counselors.
Do you have some immature, ungodly counselors in your life? Then graciously move away from them. Ask God to give you some people in your life who will help you stay in the right lane. You may have to pursue an older, wiser friend. They will be blessed by your invitation, and you will be immeasurably helped.
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June 08, 2019
June 07, 2019
… with most of us modern Christians is that we are stoppable. A little discomfort, a turn from our desired daily routine, or a little resistance from those to whom we’re witnessing throws us off. We have not settled the issue that our greatest joy and highest purpose comes from our witness, and so we are unwilling to push through in sharing Christ with others every day, even in the mildest environments. Even when persecution is not present.
June 03, 2019
These all with one mind were continually devoting themselves to prayer (Acts 1:14)
Prayer is the foundation for all of life. Imagine the emotions and sense of fear and expectancy when Christ had been resurrected, appeared to His disciples, and then ascended. They were instructed to merely wait for the coming of the Holy Spirit who would endue them with power to be witnesses to Christ all across the world (Acts 1:8).
So, what did they do?