"Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need" - Hebrews 4:16 (NIV).
The case is familiar. A woman is caught red handed in an act of prostitution by a mob of men. She is hurried to a teacher of religious law called Jesus. The mob knows it has an iron clad case and if this is a true prophet from God once her indiscretions are bared open he will shriek and order her right to the gallows. But then something else happens.
"In the Law Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do you say?” (John 8:5), the crowd incites Jesus to finish her off.
To their astonishment Jesus already aware of their intentions, simply, "straightened up and said to them, “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her" (vv 8). Much as they were enraged the accusers were not blameless either. One by one they picked up and elbowed themselves out, until Jesus was left with only the woman. All scattered, "Jesus declared. “Go now and leave your life of sin" (vv 11).
Something had happened. The woman's accusers had stormed Jesus with self righteous indignation expecting condemnation. Yet from the Lord Jesus this sinful woman met mercy! Oh boy, they must have been dissapointed.
So, here is the point. Before men we all can stand accused; the crowds ready and eager to execute us. But before Lord Jesus we find the throne of mercy. For "The LORD is compassionate and merciful, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love" (Psalm 103:8).
Prayer for today: Lord Father God of Abraham, maker of heaven and earth, to you who is merciful I come to you assured of the love of God which surpasses human understanding, this I pray in Jesus's name!
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“Who dares despise the day of small things, since the seven eyes of the Lord that range throughout the earth will rejoice when they see the chosen capstone in the hand of Zerubbabel” ( Zechariah 4:10).
The public life of King David is well known. However, there is an early aspect of his life quite hidden though we can get glimpse of it. The first time we get to know David he is a stay home kid while his big brothers are on to bigger stuff, like fighting with King Saul. “Jesse’s three oldest sons had followed Saul to the war: The firstborn was Eliab; the second, Abinadab; and the third, Shammah. David was the youngest. The three oldest followed Saul, but David went back and forth from Saul to tend his father’s sheep at Bethlehem” ( I Samuel 27:13-14).
Left home alone perhaps it was a time for David to bond with the old man Jesse. Maybe he sometimes felt idle and ignored. But there was something maturing in his life for the life ahead. For in the meantime as he would later point to King Saul once an opportunity availed itself, God was ironing out his CV. When he offered to take on Goliath and Saul hesitated, he quickly shot back: “Your servant has been keeping his father’s sheep. When a lion or a bear came and carried off a sheep from the flock, I went after it, struck it and rescued the sheep from its mouth. When it turned on me, I seized it by its hair, struck it and killed it. Your servant has killed both the lion and the bear; this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of them, because he has defied the armies of the living God. The Lord who rescued me from the paw of the lion and the paw of the bear will rescue me from the hand of this Philistine” (vv 35-37).
That’s the point. What had apparent been idle moments God was preparing David for the battles ahead? He would not only emerge out of the shadow as a great warrior but also a shepherd of his people ever relying on God.
Equally so, for all of us, there are moments that might appear idle and we feel frustrated as we see the days go by. Yet, in His gentle ways, God is preparing us for great days ahead.
Prayer today: Lord Father God, maker of heaven and earth, for those periods in life of apparent inactivity and maybe trials, help me appreciate them as the maturing me, for in due time and season all will bear fruit, this I pray in Jesus’ name!