“I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well” - Psalm 139:14 (NIV)
In recent days there have been increasing instances of lives around us suddenly going. Sometimes there are cases of Covid- 19; but also, normal life cycle and accidents do happen. Now it is one thing to see a person full of life but to lose the same person in a matter of hours or weeks can be more than devastating. Perhaps by nursing the person long before the finality of life draws to end one could come around with the idea of life going, which is not the case with such sudden deaths.
Scripture says, “Seventy years are given to us! Some even live to eighty.. soon they disappear, and we fly away” (Psalm 90:10). Life is a gift from God. As Psalm 90:12 says, “Teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts to wisdom." On one hand it is tempting to feel one has all the power with life but in reality our control is very much limited.
King Solomon once wrote, “This is what I have observed to be good: that it is appropriate for a person to eat, to drink and to find satisfaction in their toilsome labor under the sun during the few days of life God has given them-for this is their lot” (Ecclesiastes 5:18). We should enjoy life where we have it. Later he concludes his long reflection with an enduring advice, “Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion of the matter: Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the duty of all mankind” (Ecclesiastes 12:13).
In a time of a pandemic two things can happen. There are those who in the midst of sudden loss or gradual loss of loved ones become so embittered and lose faith in God. But there are also those who realize that after all life is a gift from God and we should be thankful, forever, difficult as it may, when we lose loved ones. And for the faithful, we are even comforted with the knowledge, “For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all” (2 Cor 4:17).
Prayer for today: Lord Father God, creator of heaven and earth, today I thank you for the gift of life, and may I cherish it, as a treasure, for only you know the number of my days, which all belong to you!
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“The LORD will send rain at the proper time from his rich treasury in the heavens and will bless all the work you do. You will lend to many nations, but you will never need to borrow from them” – (Deuteronomy 28:2).
Every now and then one chances upon someone despising the importance of being enterprising. To some being enterprising can be equated to the love of money and it’s pitfalls (1 Tim 6:10). Others see it as being overtly worldly. Yet, far from it, being enterprising is clearly an avenue God has given believers to raise resources for their well-being and promotion of the rich Gospel.
The Bible is full of enterprising characters who were used mightily of God. Abraham was apparently a good rancher that he “become very wealthy in livestock and in silver and gold” (Gen 13:2). Job was hated by Satan who sought to destroy him because “He owned 7,000 sheep, 3,000 camels, 500 teams of oxen, and 500 female donkeys. He also had many servants. He was, in fact, the richest person in that entire area” (Job 1:3).
The Lord Jesus Christ was born and raised in the house of Joseph, the carpenter (Mathew 13:55). Carpenters do not create works of beauty to donate for free. To prosper they must run sustainable enterprises which pay taxes and make profit. The Apostle Paul would often rely on enterprising people to support him in his ministry. One of his worthy converts “was a woman named Lydia, a dealer in purple cloth. She was a worshiper of God (Acts 16:14).
Though Paul was a law don once he went to the mission field, other than cling to his titles by burdening his hosts he often dabbled in tent making to support himself. In Corinth he teamed up with an amazing couple, Priscilla and Aquila, and “because he was a tentmaker as they were, he stayed and worked with them” (Acts 18:3). This couple run a successful tent making business that enabled them support mission work.
And then of course, there is the noble woman of character, as told in Proverbs 31, who “selects wool and flax and works with eager hands. She is like the merchant ships, bringing her food from afar. She considers a field and buys it; out of her earnings.. She sees that her trading is profitable…She makes linen garments and sells them, and supplies the merchants with sashes (vv 13-25).
When the body of believers is filled with such enterprising people it generates resources important to sustain God’s work. Further, the work of God is then supported without being dependent on sources that might compromise the mission, as sometimes we see! Be enterprising!
Prayer for today: Lord father God of Abraham, maker of heaven and earth, you who has given us the gift of enterprise, today I pray to use this gift to take care of my needs and support the expansion of your kingdom on earth, this I pray in Jesus’ Name.