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If You Do Well…

May 7, 2016

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If  You Do Well…

Sometimes  we just don’t feel good  about things.     Something is not quite the way  we would like it  to be.    There usually is  a very valid reason  for our inner feelings  of unrest.     Paul tells us why  we might be feeling uncomfortable  and ill at ease  in Philippians 4:9.     He says,

The things you have learned  and received  and heard  and seen  in me,  practice these things;  and the God of peace  shall be  with you.

That’s it.     We don’t feel quite right  because we aren’t  quite right.     Instead of practicing  what we have learned  in God’s word,  we are trying  to live  according to the world.     It’s simply not right.     We know  we are being disobedient.     Trying to avoid the truth  all the time  won’t help us  to feel better.

If we want the peace  of God’s approval,  we have to be  pro-active as a real friend  of God.     It has been that way  since the beginning  of time.     In Genesis 4,  we read about Cain  and Abel.     Abel,  a keeper of flocks,  pleased the Lord  by giving his best lamb  as an offering.    He felt good  about pleasing the Lord  and being in fellowship  with Him.     Cain,  a farmer,  gave an offering  of just some  of the “fruit of the ground” — evidently not the best  of his produce  and not with an honestly good heart  towards God  and His promise  of salvation.     Cain did not feel good  about his offering  or his lack of fellowship  with the Lord.

When we give something,  it does matter  what is  in our heart.     So,  when God could not have regard  for Cain’s disdainful offering,  Cain went further  into sin  by becoming angry.     And so we read  in Genesis 4:6-7,

Then the LORD said  to Cain,  “Why are you angry?     And why has your countenance fallen?     If you do well,  will not your countenance  be lifted up?     And if you do not  do well,  sin is crouching  at the door;  and its desire  is for you,  but you must  master it.

In his disgust,  Cain did not want  to master  the sin  at his door.     Instead,  he chose  to murder  his brother,  Abel.     Everything went  from bad  to worse  for him  because he chose  to not practice “the things you have learned  and received  and heard  and seen in me,”  as Paul taught the Philippians.

It’s so good  to have the peace  of God  in our hearts  and live  in true fellowship  with Him,  doing what we know  is good  and right.     We know  what kinds of friends  we like  to have.     We need  to be  that kind of friend  with God.     We do need  to practice  being a friend  of God.     We can start  by remembering  all the good things  the Lord constantly does  for us  and having thankful hearts  that are expressed  in actions  of goodness  from loving hearts.

Then,  in the peace  of God’s friendship,  we say,  “Hallelujah!     Lord,  Your love towards us  is so faithful.     Thank You  for helping us  through this life.”

Love,
Margaret

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A Christian devotional  to glorify  the LORD of lords  and GOD of gods.

Pray for our country.

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Handel’s Hallelujah Chorus

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The LORD  made this day, let us rejoice  and be glad  in Him.

Psalm 118:24

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The word of the LORD is tried;

He is a shield  to all  who take refuge  in Him.

Psalm 18:30

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Sing for joy  in the LORD,  O you righteous ones;

Praise is becoming  to the upright.

Psalm 33:1

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How blessed are those  who dwell  in Thy house!

They are ever praising Thee.

Psalm 84:4

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Just as a father  has compassion  on his children,

So the LORD  has compassion  on those who fear Him.

Psalm 103:13

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O give thanks  to the LORD,  for He is good;

For His lovingkindness  is everlasting.

Psalm 107:1

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Glory in His holy name;

Let the heart  of those who seek the LORD  be glad.

Psalm 105:3

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Not that I have already obtained it,  or have already  become perfect, but I press on  in order that  I may  lay hold  of that for which also  I was laid hold of  by Christ Jesus.

Philippians 3:12

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