B Moments, idolatry

Do You Avoid the Many Shades of Idolatry?

This is our B moment. Our moment to be still…to be fed by the Word of God…to be grateful.

Scripture reference: Romans 12:2 (ESV)

Transcription:

Today, I am thinking about the many shades of idolatry.

In this series, we’ve been studying Solomon’s missteps. His first misstep was when he allowed the influences of this world to pull him further and further away from God. His next misstep came when he allowed his heart to become divided. He ended up doing things God’s way one day and his way the next.

His ultimate misstep was when he allowed idolatry to creep into and take over his life. We know that shortly after Solomon was named king, his number one priority was to build God’s temple. Solomon took constructing God’s temple seriously, only hiring the most skilled laborers and only purchasing the finest building materials.

Once the temple was built, Solomon offered several thousand sacrifices, and he knelt before everyone to dedicate the new temple. Yet shortly thereafter, Solomon started to build his own house. It took him seven years to build the temple for God, but it took him thirteen years to build his house, which ended up being larger than the temple. Even though Solomon started out with the highest intentions, over time, idolatry crept in.

We see that idolatry has many shades—that desire to have the most and the finest. We can even idolize others and their opinions of us. Let us be conscious of the many shades of idolatry by remembering these words: “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind…” Romans 12:2 (ESV)

Please share this reflection as others desire to be inspired.

So today, don’t let anything become more important to you than God.

B Moments, answers

You Don’t Need the Answers to Pass the Test

This is our B moment. Our moment to be still…to be fed by the Word of God…to be grateful.

Scripture reference: Psalm 46:10 (ESV)

Transcription:

Today, I am thinking about those times when we don’t have all the answers.

Recently, we talked about Job, a man of great character and wealth who always turned away from evil. One day, Satan told God that Job was only so faithful because God had blessed him with so much and put a hedge around all his possessions. So, God allowed Satan to take everything away from Job.

Hoping that Job would eventually curse God, Satan took away his possessions, his children, and even his good health. Yet under these horrific conditions, Job refused to curse God. In other words, Job passed the test.

However, as I look more closely at the passage, I also see that Job operated with a lot of unknowns. He had no idea about the conversation God had with Satan. He was being tested while he was in the dark.

Sometimes we are inclined to place a logical spin on things, such as when we believe things are happening to punish us for our sins. Yet that wasn’t the case with Job because God described him as a blameless and upright man.

In some instances, we can’t just draw a dotted line between the cause and effect of events in our lives. Things can happen in our lives just because God allows them to happen. The question is, how will you respond when something unfavorable happens and you have no explanation for it?

Let us be encouraged because when Job was unfaithful in the dark, God restored everything to him even better than before. Furthermore, situations like this allow our faith to be cultivated. When we’re in times like this, let us cling to these few words: “Be still, and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10 (ESV)

Please share this reflection as others desire to be inspired.

So today, trust God—even when you have no answers.

B Moments, meek

The Meek Shall Inherit the Earth

This is our B moment. Our moment to be still…to be fed by the Word of God…to be grateful.

Scripture reference: Psalm 28:7 (ESV)

Transcription:

Today, I am thinking about how the meek shall inherit the earth.

I have read Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount several times before and always thought I understood the meaning of the word meek. I associated the word meek with being weak, passive, or even submissive.

However, as I was reading from a study Bible, I learned a deeper meaning of the word meek. The explanation reads, “The meek are seen as gentle. They do not assert themselves over others in order to advance their own agendas and in their own strength.”

Here’s the key. The meek will inherit the earth because they trust in God to direct the outcome of events.

When I turn to the Scriptures and attempt to put a face to the word meek, I think about Daniel. Daniel was an administrator in the king’s court and had recently been promoted.

However, there were those who were jealous of Daniel’s success and plotted to have him removed. They knew that Daniel prayed to God daily, so they convinced the king to enforce a decree that said that no one was to petition any god or man for the next thirty days.

Daniel did not make a public outcry about the decree. Instead, he continued to worship God daily and trusted that God would direct the outcome of events.

As we know, David was thrown into the lion’s den for his actions, yet he came out unharmed as God sealed the lion’s mouth shut.

Is there an opportunity for you to demonstrate meekness in your life? If so consider these words: “The Lord is my strength and my shield; in him, my heart trusts, and I am helped.” Psalm 28:7 (ESV)

Please share this reflection as others desire to be inspired.

So today, embrace meekness.

B Moments, supernatural response

In Challenging Times, Have Your Supernatural Response Ready

This is our B moment. Our moment to be still…to be fed by the Word of God…to be grateful.

Scripture reference: 1 Thessalonians 5:18 (ESV)

Transcription:

I’m not in the studio today, but I am appreciating what a supernatural response can do for you.

We’re wrapping up our series on navigating through challenging and unknown times. We’ve talked about seeking God for GPS-like directions, meaning direction at every step, as well as how we shouldn’t become too overwhelmed that we forget to start our day in prayer. We also discussed how, despite what we see in our lives day to day, God always has something greater at work.

This reminds me of a passage that I once read in the devotional, Jesus Calling. The point of the devotional was that when things seem to be going wrong, we should trust God. When things seem out of control, we should thank Him. Responding in a supernatural way can lift you above your circumstances.

This is exactly what Jeremiah did. When the Israelites were exiled to Babylon, they were considered refugees, and things were very much out of control for them. However, in this chaos, Jeremiah trusted God’s word and purchased a piece of land that he knew would fall into the hands of the Babylonians.

Jeremiah wanted to show the Israelites just how much he believed in God’s word during the chaos and before God’s promises were fulfilled. His response was a supernatural one.

In the midst of challenging times, let us cling to these words: “Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” 1 Thessalonians 5:18 (ESV)

Please share this reflection as others desire to be inspired.

So today, give a supernatural response.

B Moments, divided

Conflicted: Seeking God’s Will One Day, Yours the Next

This is our B moment. Our moment to be still…to be fed by the Word of God…to be grateful.

Scripture reference: Proverbs 3:5-6 (ESV)

Transcription:

Today, I am thinking about the cost of a divided heart.

In this series, we’re taking a closer look at Solomon’s life. Recently, we talked about Solomon’s insatiable desire for wealth and material possessions. He took on a mindset that he needed just one more wife, just one more chariot. This led him to have 700 wives and 1,400 chariots.

Solomon’s first downfall came when he allowed the influences of this world to pull him further and further away from God. His next downfall came when he allowed his heart to become divided. He wanted things both ways. He did things God’s way one day and his way the next.

We know that Solomon had a weakness for women, which led him to marry many foreign women. God warned Solomon about this because the foreign women worshiped other gods.

Initially, Solomon built little shrines for his wives so they could burn their incense and make sacrifices to their gods. Yet before long, Solomon joined his wives in worshiping these other gods.

This ultimately led to Solomon’s undoing. Evil gained a foothold into his heart, which caused his wholehearted love for God to become divided. He worshiped his heavenly Father one day and the earthly gods the next.

Is your heart conflicted today? Are you doing what God asked you to do one day and doing what you desire the next? As you reflect on that, let us cling to these words from Solomon: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart…In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.” Proverbs 3:5-6 (ESV)

Please share this reflection as others desire to be inspired.

So today, trust Him wholeheartedly.

B Moments, excess

Avoid Letting Excess Creep into Your Life

This is our B moment. Our moment to be still…to be fed by the Word of God…to be grateful.

Scripture reference: 1 John 4:4 (ESV)

Transcription:

Today, I am thinking about how excess can creep into our lives.

In this series, we’ll be taking a closer look at Solomon’s life. Shortly after Solomon was named king, God appeared to him in a dream and asked, “What do you want? Ask, and I will give it to you.”

Solomon said, “Give me an understanding mind so that I can govern your people well.” God replied, “I will give you what you ask for—a wise mind—and I will also give you what you didn’t ask for—riches and honor.”

Just imagine God appearing to you in a dream and telling you, “I will give you what you ask for and even what you didn’t ask for.” What more could you desire? How could that not be enough?

But for Solomon, it wasn’t enough. Solomon’s lifestyle soon became excessive. He had 700 wives, 300 concubines, 1,400 chariots, and 12,000 imported horses. So, what happened to Solomon? Why all of this excess?

Solomon began to allow the influences of the world to dictate his value. These influences pulled him further and further away from God. When this happens, emptiness is sure to follow. Solomon tried to fill his emptiness, but with the wrong things—just one more wife, just one more chariot.

Do you find yourself in a place where you think just one more hour of work, one more gadget, one more pair of shoes will do the trick? Let’s take it from Solomon that it won’t. If excess has started to creep into your life, remember these words: “…for he who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.” 1 John 4:4 (ESV)

Please share this reflection as others desire to be inspired.

So today, let go of excess.

B Moments, shift

Consciously Shift Your Thoughts and Words

This is our B moment. Our moment to be still…to be fed by the Word of God…to be grateful.

Scripture reference: Proverbs 18:21 (ESV)

Transcription:

Today, I am thinking about what’s possible when we shift our thoughts and words.

Recently, we talked about the importance of disallowing or rejecting negative beliefs. Specifically, we discussed the story of the wealthy woman the prophet Elisha would come to know. Later on, this woman would master how to disallow negativity to the extent that she would not even speak of it when she witnessed it with her own eyes.

One day, the woman’s son was working outdoors when he became ill. A servant brought him to the woman, and she held him on her lap. However, around noontime, the Scriptures say he died.

Without hesitation, the woman promptly laid her son’s body on the bed and immediately called for a donkey so that she could travel to see Elisha. Her husband questioned her about going at that particular time. She simply replied that all would be well.

As she was traveling on the donkey to Elisha, he saw her in the distance and sent his servant to meet her. When the servant greeted her, he specifically asked her, “Is everything well with you? With your husband? With your son?”

Her reply to all of it was, “It is well.” The woman seemed to have gained a keen understanding of the power of her words.

Now I ask you, is there a situation in your life that you’ve written off or claimed as dead, but you now see the opportunity to shift your thoughts and words about it? As you think about that, remember these words: “Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruits.” Proverbs 18:21 (ESV)

Please share this reflection as others desire to be inspired.

So today, watch your thoughts and words.

B Moment, changes

Be Encouraged: God Knows When Your Heart Changes

This is our B moment. Our moment to be still…to be fed by the Word of God…to be grateful.

Scripture reference: Psalm 139:2 (ESV)

Today I am thinking about how God knows when your heart changes.

Sometimes, I can be hard on myself when I believe I have fallen short. It’s a classic case of knowing better, yet feeling as though I am not yet doing better. This is something I especially reflected on while reading about Rahab.

I was comforted after reading Rahab’s story because I realized just how much God knows our hearts.

Rahab was a prostitute who lived in Jericho. Before Joshua ultimately conquered Jericho, he sent two spies in advance, and Rahab allowed the spies to hide in her house.

While the spies were there, she talked to them about their God, saying she had heard all about their God of both heaven and Earth.

She talked with them so passionately that it was almost as if she wanted their God to become her God as well.

A month later, Joshua returned to conquer the entire town of Jericho. In the chaos, Rahab and her family were spared.

Hearing this inspired me because not only did God know Rahab’s heart, but He knew when she had a change of heart and began to desire to know Him better.

Therefore, let us be inspired that we serve a God who is intimately aware of us, our hearts, and the actions we may take next. Let us cling to these words: “You know when I sit down and when I rise up; you discern my thoughts from afar.” Psalm 139:2 (ESV)

Please share this reflection as others desire to be inspired.

So today, be encouraged that God knows when your heart changes even if your actions don’t fully reflect this change just yet.

B Moments, repay

Let God’s Hand Repay Evil

This is our B moment. Our moment to be still…to be fed by the Word of God…to be grateful.

Scripture reference: Romans 12:17 (ESV)

Today, I am thinking about how we should let God’s hand repay evil and not ours.

Recently, I was talking about the story of David and Nabal. Nabal was a wealthy man who lived near the village of Carmel.

When David was near Carmel, he sent Nabal a friendly message asking for food and water for his men. Yet when Nabal received David’s message, he was drunk and called David and his men a band of outlaws.

Luckily, Nabal’s wife, Abigail, reached David first and convinced him not to kill her husband. David thanked her for her wise counsel and blessed her for preventing him from carrying out vengeance with his own hands.

After Abigail resolved matters with David, she returned home to find her husband still drunk. She decided to tell him everything that had happened the next day when he was sober.

However, when she told him how she had handled things with David, Nabal immediately had a stroke. The Scriptures say that ten days later, the Lord struck him and he died. When David learned of Nabal’s death, he praised the Lord for paying back Nabal and keeping David from doing it himself.

Are you on the fence about whether you should take matters into your own hands? If so, pass the situation from your hands to God’s and hold on to these words instead: “Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all.” Romans 12:17 (ESV)

Please share this reflection as others desire to be inspired.

So today, let only God’s hand repay any wrongdoings that have been done against you.

B Moments, spin

Avoid Putting Your Own Spin on God’s Will

This is our B moment. Our moment to be still…to be fed by the Word of God…to be grateful.

Scripture reference: Hebrews 10:36 (ESV)

Today, I am thinking about how sometimes we can put our own spin on fulfilling God’s will.

In this series, we are talking about embracing God’s will and about how sometimes we can miss the mark. King Saul’s life is a perfect example of this.

One day, Saul was given specific instructions from God to go and destroy the Amalekites. The Amalekites were being killed because of their opposition to the Israelites when they came from Egypt.

Saul was instructed to kill the entire nation, including the cattle, sheep, and donkeys—everything. Yet when Saul mobilized his army of 200,000, he slaughtered the Amalekites but spared the king and kept all the cattle, despite God’s clear instructions.

When Samuel, the prophet, questioned Saul about it, he said that he had obeyed the Lord. In fact, he said that he intended to sacrifice the cattle before the Lord.

However, God didn’t ask Saul to sacrifice; He asked him to obey. Partial obedience is not obedience. Saul fulfilled part of God’s will and put his own spin on the rest.

How often do we do this? We fulfill part of what God is asking us to do and then we try to overcompensate in another area. If that might be you today, let these words inspire you: “…so that when you have done the will of God you may receive what is promised.” Hebrews 10:36 (ESV)

Please share this reflection as others desire to be inspired.

So today, avoid putting your own spin on God’s will and just embrace it.