Jesus’ Presence: Stay Rooted, Drink Deeply

God Will Make a Way – Don Moen https://youtu.be/1zo3fJYtS-o

(Read aloud, with Thanksgiving)

The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of His hands.
2Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they reveal knowledge.

3Without speech or language, without a sound to be heard,
4their voice has gone out into all the earth, their words to the ends of the world. In the heavens He has pitched a tent for the sun

5like a bridegroom emerging from his chamber, like a champion rejoicing to run his course.

6It rises at one end of the heavens and runs its circuit to the other; nothing is deprived of its warmth.
7The Law of the LORD is perfect, reviving the soul; the testimony of the LORD is trustworthy, making wise the simple.
8The precepts of the LORD are right,
bringing joy to the heart; the commandments of the LORD are radiant, giving light to the eyes.
9The fear of the LORD is pure, enduring forever; the judgments of the LORD are true, being altogether righteous.
10They are more precious than gold, than much pure gold; they are sweeter than honey, than honey from the comb.
11By them indeed Your servant is warned; in keeping them is great reward.
12Who can discern his own errors?
Cleanse me from my hidden faults.
13Keep Your servant also from willful sins; may they not rule over me. Then I will be blameless and cleansed of great transgression.
14May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in Your sight, O LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer.

Psalm 19 BSB

The Lord is great and worthy of all our praises! In these uncertain times, it may be hard to find the words to praise and give thanks. But in these times we must remember to abide and cling to the Vine of Christ (John 15:1-5); to let the Word of God transform our thoughts, Jesus’ peace rule in our hearts, and to be thankful (Romans 12:2, Colossians 3:15). In 1Thessalonians 5:16-18 we’re instructed to, “Rejoice at all times. Pray without ceasing. Give thanks in every circumstance, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” Do you see a theme here? It’s about keeping our focus upward on the Lord. As we pray, worship, read, study, meditate upon, and memorize the Word, keep His peace in our hearts, and  keep a gratitude attitude, our roots grow deeper, so when storms blow and droughts come we can withstand the elements without shriveling or withering away.

16Thus says the LORD, who makes a way in the sea and a path through the surging waters, 17who brings out the chariots and horses, the armies and warriors together, to lie down, never to rise again; to be extinguished, snuffed out like a wick:

18“Do not call to mind the former things; pay no attention to the things of old. 19Behold, I am about to do something new; even now it is coming. Do you not see it? Indeed, I will make a way in the wilderness and streams in the desert.

20The beasts of the field will honor Me, the jackals and the owls, because I provide water in the wilderness and rivers in the desert, to give drink to My chosen people. 21The people I formed for Myself will declare My praise.”

Isaiah 43:16-21 BSB

1Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; 2but his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law he meditates day and night. 3He is like a tree planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither. In all that he does, he prospers.

Psalm 1:1-3 ESV

We are never alone in our walk, in our fight, in our fears and doubts. God knows we will have those fears, they are a natural human response to circumstances. A response He programmed into our DNA. However, He wants us to know we can live and thrive beyond fear and doubts in and through Him by abiding, sending down strong, deep roots, and drinking deep of the Living Water, Jesus, He alone provides through His Word, His Spirit (presence), and His people (fellowship in community/the Church).

We cannot stay rooted, abiding in the Vine,  being well-watered alone. The Word says to not neglect meeting together (Hebrews 10:25). That is a challenge in our current quarantine mode, but through social media we can stay connected to each other. The important thing is to remember is that even in this time, we live in an age that has many ways to connect without being face-to-face. Nothing can replace human touch, but while we have to refrain, we do have options. Many “churches” worshipped today via live streaming. I found ours almost as good as in person. The message was definitely on fire! There are apps for video meetings that can be used for Bible studies, and so on. We can make phone calls, Skype or FaceTime, and text to check on friends and family. There’s even good old snail mail. A note or card can really brighten someone’s day.

6Therefore, just as you have received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to walk in Him, 7rooted and built up in Him, established in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.

Colossians 2:6-7 BSB

Walk in Jesus. Let Him build us up by His Spirit, with His Word. Sending down our roots to drink in His presence, the Water of Life, to refresh and sustain us as we encounter struggles and troubles in our lives. And because our Great God uses and coordinates all things for the good of those who love Him, includong our pain, we can trust Him with the outcome even in the darkest of circumstances (Romans 8:28). We need to keep trusting Him even when we cannnot see where He is leading us. He is faithful. He has instructed us in how to be equipped with His courage and strength, and dressed for the battle that rages around and within us (Joshua 1:6-9, 1 Corinthians,2 Corinthians 12:7-10,  Ephesians 6:10-18).


Even If – Mercy Me

https://youtu.be/B6fA35Ved-Y

16Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego replied, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to defend ourselves before you. 17If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God whom we serve is able to save us. He will rescue us from your power, Your Majesty. 18But even if he doesn’t, we want to make it clear to you, Your Majesty, that we will never serve your gods or worship the gold statue you have set up.”

Daniel 3:16-18 NLT

I have always been encouraged by the faith of these three young men. They were steadfast in their faith even to the point of death. They did not complain against God for their circumstances or blame Him for them. They believed God could save them and would save them. Yet if for some reason He chose not to save them, they were resolved that their faith would not waiver.

25For I know that my Redeemer lives,

and at the last he will stand upon the earth. 26And after my skin has been thus destroyed, yet in my flesh I shall see God,

Job 18:25-26 ESV

This faith declaration is from our “good friend” Job. Jesus was centuries from being born, yet Job proclaimed the glories of His Redeemer and his hope even while in the darkest place a person could ever be found: having had all his children killed, every possession taken away, and even his health attacked. Nothing remained for him, except a bitter, nagging wife and 3 accusing “friends.”

We can have this same faith and hope as Job and the 3 young Hebrew men  no matter our circumstances. By not giving up, staying in the Word, stay connected to the Lord and other believers, sending down those deep roots and drinking deeply of the Living Water that is Jesus, our source of life, peace, courage, and strength in all things.

PRAYER:
Father God, in Jesus’ name we thank and praise You for who You are and for the numerous blessing You have poured out upon us. We especially thank You today for [insert your specific blessings here], social media communities, all of our tireless emergency, medical, grocery, truckers, and other workers who continue to work and keep provisions and services going for us. For researchers working to develop a vaccine and cure for the COVID-19 virus, President Trump, our governors and other leaders here in the U.S. and around the world as they guide us through this crisis. Lord guide them and give them all the wisdom they need to do their jobs well, safely, and in good health. Lord, we pray that we have reached the top of this curve and that it will flatten out and go down dramatically and quickly in Jesus’ name.

We pray that by Jesus’ wounds those who are sick with the virus and other ailments and injuries [insert specific names here] are healed.

We know you don’t waste our pain and suffering. Use this pandemic as a time of revival and harvest. Awaken the lost to the truth of the Gospel by the power of the Holy Spirit and draw them to Jesus. Renew and revive the church, your body, your people through this to be stronger and more on fire for spreading the Gospel and seeing lives changed and people saved!

We give You all the glory and praises! Amen.

BLESSING:

14For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, 15from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, 16that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, 18may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, 19and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.

20Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us,

Ephesians 3:14-20 ESV

24Now to him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you blameless before the presence of his glory with great joy, 25to the only God, our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen.

Jude 1:24-25 ESV

Blessings of Hope and Joy,

Julia

©2020 Julia Melatis, Hope & Joy Ministries. All rights reserved. Please feel free to share the link to this website on your social media accounts. All other copying of this material is protected whether in print, electronic, or otherwise stored or distributed elsewhere

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