May 17, Friday

Today’s AMI QT Devotional is provided by Mei Lan Thallman who is serves as a staff at Grace Covenant Church in Philadelphia. Mei Lan, originally from Taiwan, is a graduate of Asbury College and Asbury Theological Seminary (M.A.) in Kentucky.  She and her husband Pastor Kirt have two children, Nate and Naomi

 

Devotional Thoughts for Today

“Overcome Fretting with Trusting”

Psalm 37:1-9

Do not fret because of those who are evil or be envious of those who do wrong; 2 for like the grass they will soon wither, like green plants they will soon die away. 3 Trust in the Lord and do good; dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture. 4 Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart. 5 Commit your way to the Lord; trust in him and he will do this: 6 He will make your righteous reward shine like the dawn, your vindication like the noonday sun. 7 Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him; do not fret when people succeed in their ways, when they carry out their wicked schemes. 8 Refrain from anger and turn from wrath; do not fret—it leads only to evil. 9 For those who are evil will be destroyed, but those who hope in the Lord will inherit the land.

When I was growing up, I had a traumatic experience with a dentist that literally scarred me for life; no wonder I simply dread going to dentist’s office.  So, words fail to describe the terror I felt when I was told three weeks ago that I needed a root canal or tooth implant. I wanted neither.

As I was anxiously fretting over my treatment options, I reached out to an endodontist student from my church.  She graciously offered to give me a second opinion by looking at my cavity-infected tooth. During my visit, she proudly showed me two of her root canal treatments done with gold crowns. Then she assured me that root canal is not as terrifying as it is perceived when it’s done right.  She won my trust when she assured me with the words, “I have done over a hundred root canal procedures.” Today I am proudly to testify that God has used her powerfully to treat not only my tooth but helped me overcome my fear of root canal.  

Dictionary defines fretting as “to feel or express worry, annoyance, or discontent.”  All of us can relate and understand why one would react in fret when faced with unexpected need for a root canal, illness, or crisis like job loss, bullying, relational conflicts.  However, as Christians we have the hope of breaking through the oppression of fretting by turning our worries into active trust in God’s ability to bring us through.

In Psalm 37:1-9, David repeatedly exhorts himself not to fret, that is, not worry in spite of unjust circumstances surrounding him, and overwhelming feelings of fear and anger that seek to overtake him and taking matters into his own hands. Instead, David, on the one hand, encourages himself to fix his attention on who God is, His character, competency, sovereignty, loving kindness, faithfulness, and on the other hand, exercises his will, mind, heart, faith muscle to trust the Lord.  

Trusting God means to walk by faith in the reliability of His character and truth.  Truth is not relative; it remains unchanging, unbending and unflinching. Trusting God means regardless what we see or feel we keep on keeping on being like Him and doing right like Him.  Trusting God means we live for the audience of One whom we love, whom we aim to please above all else,

Being a Christian does not shield us from facing life’s many challenges, trials and tribulations. When they come, we don’t have to face them alone.  His presence and grace will be there with us to sustain us and help us to overcome in His power. He is able to sovereignly work through these difficult moments to grow our trust in Him and our characters to reflect Him to the world.     

Prayer:  Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for being my good Father who always has my best interest in mind.  I thank You that You are more concerned about my wholeness than my comfort and happiness. I thank You that You love me so much that You will use every opportunity to help me grow up in the fullness of Christ.  Help me to continuously surrender to Your love and molding instead of fighting You or abandoning You when life gets tough, painful and disappointing. Please forgive me and save me from my selfishness and fickleness.  Thank You for Your unceasing and relenting Father’s heart for me. In Jesus’ mighty name, Amen.

Bible Reading for Today: 1 Samuel 5


Lunch Break Study

Read Colossians 1:10-14: And we pray this in order that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and may please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and joyfully giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the kingdom of light.

Questions to Consider

  1. What does it mean to live a life worthy of the Lord?
  2. According to the text, what specific ways we can please God?
  3. Are you making life’s choices that are worthy of the Lord?

Notes

  1. When we claim to be a Christian, our character, relationships and lifestyle should give an authentic witness to the faith we profess.  This is not a legalistic perfection but a work in progress of Christ likeness.
  2. We can please God by daily drawing near to Him, feed on His truth, cooperating with the Holy Spirit’s transformation of our person and empowerment to do the good work He has entrusted to us at home, church and workplace.
  3. Personal response

Evening Reflection

Take time to reflect on the day.  Are there events or worries that are weighing you down?  Can you surrender these cares one by one by naming them and surrender them to your Father’s care and love for you?  

“Lord Jesus help me to cast these cares upon you because I believe you care for me and you will help me.”

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