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B Moments, small gift

Give Anyway: God Appreciates Your Small Gift Most

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

Scripture reference: Luke 6:38 (ESV)

Transcription:

Today, I am thinking about the impact of a small gift.

The last few series have involved some element of being in a new season or embarking on a new journey. As an entrepreneur, I can easily recall those days along my journey when I would refrain from giving because I couldn’t give in the way I really wanted to give.

Sometimes I didn’t have enough time to give of myself in the way I wished, so I wouldn’t volunteer at all. Other times, I didn’t have enough money to give the gift I really wanted to give, so I would either give what I could afford and feel some sense of shame, or I wouldn’t give at all.

Now, I have a completely different take on giving. I understand that God does not measure giving in the same way society measures it. This is made crystal clear in the story about the widow’s offering.

One day, many rich people put large sums of money in the treasury at the temple. They deposited all types of coins and donations as they were giving from their abundance. Then, a widow came to the temple and deposited just a couple of coins.

Unlike the others, the widow was giving from her heart. She was giving what she had. That got Jesus’ attention to the extent that he talked to his disciples about this type of giving and how important it is.

Remember that God sees us and knows the motivation behind our giving. When you’re in a new season, you may not be able to give the way you want to, but don’t let that stop you from giving something from your heart.

As you think about your next gift, remember these words: “…give, and it will be given to you. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over…” Luke 6:38 (ESV)

Please share this reflection as others desire to be inspired.

So today, let your small gift have a big impact.

B Moments, stand

Challenge the Status Quo for God

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

Scripture reference: James 4:17 (ESV)

Today, I am thinking about how we can occasionally move so far away from what really matters to God. When this happens, we have to challenge the status quo and take a stand for what really matters to Him.

This is what Jesus did when he saw that the temple had become a marketplace. It’s important to note that all stories about Jesus aren’t reflected in each gospel, but this story is told in all four gospels, hence its significance.

Let me set the scene. The Israelites were coming to Jerusalem from all over to celebrate Passover. In addition to the tithes that they paid when they arrived, which were a tenth of their earnings, there was also a temple tax that they had to pay for the upkeep of the temple.

Because the Israelites traveled from several different places, they arrived with multiple currencies. Therefore, there were also money changers on hand to exchange those currencies, and they often did so at a premium exchange rate.

Since it was Passover, people in the temple were also selling animals to be sacrificed. It was clear that the central objective of the operation was to get as much money out of the people as they could. This made it much more like a marketplace than a house of worship. In fact, the people at the temple had moved so far away from what mattered to God that Jesus had to chase them out.

In your community or your place of worship, do you need to challenge the status quo? As you think about that, remember these words: “So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin.” James 4:17 (ESV)

Please share this reflection as others desire to be inspired.

So today, take a stand for what matters to God.

B Moments, giving

God’s Gifts Are Always the Best

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

Scripture reference: Psalm 37:4 (ESV)

Transcription:

I am on the road today, but I am thinking about how you can’t beat God at giving.

Recently, we talked about how we may have the best idea that is rooted in the highest good, but it still may not align with God’s will. This was the case with David as he compared his house to the Lord’s house.

David saw that he lived in a house of cedar, yet the Lord’s dwelling was nothing more than a tent. This bothered David and he felt that he had to fix this. It was on his heart to build a temple for God—not just any temple, but a magnificent temple that would glorify God.

However, later that night, word came to Nathan from God that it was not David who would build the temple. Even though David may have been heartbroken by this news, he didn’t wallow in his sadness. Instead, he accepted God’s will. In turn, this is how God responded.

First, God reminded David of what he had already done. The Lord had moved David from the pasture to be prince over his people. God was also with him through every battle and cut off his enemies at every direction. Finally, God told David that David’s son would be the one to build the temple and that his throne would be established forever.

In this story we see that David’s sincere heart was trying to build a house for God, and in turn, God was building a dynasty for David. Whatever you have on your heart today to do for God or to do for His children, keep at it and watch how God blesses you and your loved ones.

As you think about that, hold onto these words: “Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.” Psalm 37:4 (ESV)

Please share this reflection as others desire to be inspired.

So today, know that you can’t beat God at giving.

B Moments, good intentions

Your Good Intentions May Not Be 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: Romans 8:28 (ESV)

Transcription:

Today, I am thinking about when our good intentions are still not God’s will.

Recently, I was reading in the first book of Chronicles about when David compared his house to the Lord’s temple. David was talking to the prophet Nathan and he said, “I dwell in a house of cedar, but the Ark of the Covenant of the Lord is under a tent.” It was in David’s heart to build the Lord a temple—not just any temple, but a magnificent temple that would really glorify the Lord.

Nathan listened to David’s desires and then told David, “Do all that is in your heart, for God is with you.” That evening, David and Nathan parted ways with what seemed to be a very noble idea. David was planning to pour his heart into building a temple for the Lord.

Yet that same night, the word of the Lord came to Nathan and said, “Tell my servant David, ‘It is not you who will build me a house to dwell in.’” I’m sure David must have experienced some disappointment as his heart was set on building this temple for the Lord. Yet instead of lingering in his own sorrow, he embraced God’s word by saying, “Oh Lord, let the word that you have spoken be established forever.”

Sometimes we can have good intentions that are rooted in the highest good, but they may still not be aligned with God’s will or timing. David teaches us to move to a place of acceptance and to avoid lingering in our ego, sorrow, and disappointment.

If you find yourself in a place of lingering today, remember these words: “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good…” Romans 8:28 (ESV)

Please share this reflection as others desire to be inspired.

So today, accept His will.

B Moments, factor

Don’t Settle for Less: Factor in God’s Power

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

Scripture reference: Matthew 19:26 (ESV)

Transcription:

Today, I am thinking about how we settle for less when we forget what’s possible with God.

In this series, we’re discussing all of the ways that we can settle, consciously and subconsciously. I was reminded of this idea when I read in the book of Acts about the time Peter healed the lame man outside the temple.

As Peter and John were walking up to the temple for their hour of prayer, a lame man asked them for money. Peter’s response to the man was, “Look at me.” The man became fixated on Peter’s face, thinking that Peter was going to honor his request and give him money or something of value.

However, Peter said, “I have no silver and gold to give you, but what I do have is healing in the name of Jesus.” Peter took the man by the right hand, and the man’s feet and ankles were immediately made strong. He not only walked into the temple, but he leaped in, praising God all the way inside.

Through this story, we see that the lame man’s heart’s desire wasn’t to be a beggar or to receive money from others. He truly wanted healing, but he settled for less because he wasn’t aware of what was possible with God.

When we forget to factor in the power of God, we end up settling for far less. Is there a hurdle in your life today that you would like to get over? Are you settling for less because you’ve forgotten what’s possible with God? Here is what Jesus told his followers: “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” Matthew 19:26 (ESV)

Please share this reflection as others desire to be inspired.

So today, factor Him in.

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, marathon

Your Purpose Is a Marathon, Not a Sprint

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

Scripture reference: Galatians 6:9 (NIV)

Today I am thinking about how my purpose is more of a marathon than a sprint.

When I look at the Scriptures, I think there’s one person who is an excellent example of looking at his assignment from God as more of a marathon. That man would be Zerubbabel. We read about him in the book of Ezra. He was a descendant of King David, and his task was to rebuild Solomon’s Temple.

While he was rebuilding the temple, he faced a lot of opposition both in and out of the rebuilding camp. There was a lot of infighting among the workers on the inside, and there were a lot of difficulties on the outside among the local citizens. There were also construction delays over which he had no control. It was a large, difficult project for numerous reasons, but Zerubbabel was up to the task.

The key lesson I take away from Zerubbabel’s example is that he knew how to define a short term distraction. He did not allow those short term issues to deter him from his long term focus. He kept a clear vision of his end goal. He essentially saw his work for God as a marathon and not a sprint.

Sometimes I can confuse the two so to get back on track, I stand on this scripture, “ Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” Galatians 6:9 (NIV)

Please share this reflection as others desire to be inspired.

So today, realize that God has a marathon and not a sprint for you to run.

B Moments, promptly

God Will Respond to Your Prayers Promptly

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

Scripture reference: Psalm 62:8 (ESV)

Today, I am reminding us about how promptly God responds.

In this series, I am thinking about all of the ways God will move to comfort us. One way He comforts us often is by hearing our prayers and responding to them promptly.

This was precisely the case for King Hezekiah, who strived to follow in the footsteps of King David. He also genuinely trusted in God as he took away all of the shrines and false gods that his people had been worshiping for years.

However, fourteen years into his reign, an enemy king named Sennacherib came against Judah. He demanded that Hezekiah pay him eleven tons of silver and one ton of gold. To get that much, Hezekiah had to take all of the silver from the temple and all of the gold off of the doors.

Yet even after Hezekiah paid him, Sennacherib came back asking for more. This time, he wanted to take over Judah entirely.

When Hezekiah learned this, he went to the temple, crying out before the Lord and begging God to open His ears to his prayers. God heard his cries and responded promptly. That very night, an angel of the Lord killed 185,000 men in Sennacherib’s army, including Sennacherib himself.

Whatever situation you need God to respond to, remember that you serve a God who has the ability to respond promptly. As you turn your situation over to Him, remember these words: “Trust in Him at all times, O people; pour out your heart before Him; God is a refuge for us.” Psalm 62:8 (ESV)

Please share this reflection as others desire to be inspired.

So today, know that He is responding now.

B Moments, promptly

God Will Promptly Respond to Comfort You

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

Scripture reference: Psalm 62:8 (ESV)

Today, I am reminding myself about how promptly God responds.

In this series, I am thinking about all of the ways God will move to comfort us. One way He comforts us often is by hearing our prayers and responding to them promptly.

This was precisely the case for King Hezekiah, who strived to follow in the footsteps of King David. He also genuinely trusted in God as he took away all of the shrines and false gods that his people had been worshiping for years.

However, fourteen years into his reign, an enemy king named Sennacherib came against Judah. He demanded that Hezekiah pay him eleven tons of silver and one ton of gold. To get that much, Hezekiah had to take all of the silver from the temple and all of the gold off of the doors.

Yet even after Hezekiah paid him, Sennacherib came back asking for more. This time, he wanted to take over Judah and its people.

When Hezekiah learned this, he went to the temple, crying out before the Lord and begging God to open His ears to his prayers. God heard his cries and responded promptly. That very night, an angel of the Lord killed 185,000 men in Sennacherib’s army, including Sennacherib.

Let us be inspired today that God will also bring us comfort by responding promptly to our prayers. As we think about that, let us cling to these words: “Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your heart before Him; God is a refuge for us.” Psalm 62:8 (ESV)

Please share this reflection as others desire to be inspired.

So today, know that He is comforting you.

B Moments, personal sanctuary

Get Closer to God Through Your Personal Sanctuary

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

Scripture reference: Matthew 6:6 (ESV)

Today, I am appreciating the value of my own personal sanctuary.

Even though I read the Scriptures, I’m always fascinated by the additional details that I learn about certain events that are described in them. For example, at the exact time of Jesus’ death, the veil in the temple was ripped from top to bottom. I learned that this was to represent the free and unlimited access people would now have to God due to Christ’s sacrifice.

Although I didn’t know that detail before, I feel as though it underscores the importance of having access to a personal sanctuary or haven where I can take advantage of this glorious gift that Christ gave to us.

This story also reminds me of a time when I was feeling somewhat forsaken by God and I reached out to a pastor. The pastor said to me that maybe it wasn’t that God had moved away from me, but that I had moved away from Him. Having a personal sanctuary helps me feel closer to God and reminds me to be in constant relationship with Him.

If you have a great agenda set forth for 2018, make sure you have a personal sanctuary so that you can converse with God about those things on your agenda. As you do that, keep these words in mind: “When you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.” Matthew 6:6 (ESV)

Please share this reflection as others desire to be inspired.

So today, claim your personal sanctuary.