Thursday, December 26, 2013

December 26, 2013 … Seeking God Wholeheartedly

Daily Berry Patch Devotions in 2013 - Day 360

Devotional Song: Go to this link  – Please take your time to see a video that I often link my fellow Christian pilgrims to here … with Steve Green singing the powerful song Find Us Faithful reminding us of our heritage of faithfulness in seeking God and following His ways to lead others by the success of our pursuit of our Lord; … and then GO TO THIS LINK  – to hear the group, Hillsong, singing, Here I Am To Worship, … a reminder that our lives are to be a 24/7 witness of worship to our God.

Highlight Passage #1 - NKJV: 2nd Chronicles 31: 20-21 [God wants us to take and hold His high place in battle.]  
20 Thus Hezekiah did throughout all Judah, and he did what was good and right and true before the LORD his God. 21 And in every work that he began in the service of the house of God, in the law and in the commandment, to seek his God, he did it with all his heart. So he prospered.
 Highlight Context - NKJV: 2nd Chronicles, Chapter 31… GO TO THIS LINK … [No room in the Inn. ] … 

Reference Passage #1: Joshua 1: 8-9 [NKJV] … [Seeking God’s way to follow His will comes from seeking Him through His word.] …
8 “ … This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success. 9 Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.” 

Reference Passage #2: Jeremiah 29: 12-13 [NKJV] … [God will listen when one seeks Him will all his heart.] …  
12 Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. 13 And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.

Reference Passage #3: Romans 12: 1-2 [NKJV] … [When we seek God, living our lives 24/7 as a living sacrifice and avoiding worldly influences, we will show His perfect will to others.] …  
1  I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. 2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.

Reference Passage #4: Philippians 4: 6-7 [NKJV] … [Seeking God’s will and His way often takes rigorous and relentless prayer.] …  
6 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; 7 and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

My Journal for Today: It’s the day after Christmas; and I’m finding myself feeling so deeply grateful for God’s perfect gift and His desire that I succeed in life by following Him and His purpose for my life. How about you? As we move toward a New Year, are you getting into a “show me the way, Lord” mode of surrender?

Today, Os Hillman, in his devotional study helped me gear up for making some New Year’s resolutions by referring me to the story of King Hezekiah in the 31st Chapter of 2nd Chronicles, linked above for your study. In this not-so-often read book of the Bible, we read of Hezekiah, who followed many bad kings in Israel, living a life pleasing to God and doing all he could to seek and find God’s ways as he was called to lead God’s people. And in the highlight verses for the day, from 2nd Chron. 31: 20-21, we read how God prospered Hezekiah’s wholehearted surrender to God’s will in following His ways from God’s word. And therein, for any of us, we have the secret to success in the Christian life.

Really, … Joshua was another Old Testament example of one to whom God gave His simple, but very challenging, secret for success; and in Joshua: 1:8 we read of God telling Joshua that he would succeed in the formidable task of taking God’s people into the Promised Land as long as Joshua sought God’s way by staying in and following God’s word. [Joshua 1: 8 is a passage which we would all do well to memorize and internalize in our lives!!]

And then, when we move to the New Testament and God’s New Covenant was of living, following Christ’s way, God gives us the same prescription for successful Christian living through His wondrous convert, the Apostle Paul, who became the zealot of seeking God and following His ways, leading all Christians into the seeking posture he wrote about in Romans 12: 1-2 and Philippians 4: 6-7, both passages teaching the reality of seeking God with all our hearts, just as God had taught his people through lives like Jeremiah, Hezekiah, and Joshua in the Old Testament.

So, as we move into a New Year, my fellow Christian, how are we going to set ourselves up for success in seeking and following God’s will in 2014? Well, today’s study and my journaling here have given me the clear picture which God is proclaiming for me … along with the songs to which I listened to above.

So, I’m pumped for the New Year; and I will do all I can – yes, ALL I CAN – to seek after God’s will and to follow His ways by seeking to know my God more – day-by-day – by being in God’s word.

And perhaps we’ll cross paths during the year as we seek our God with all our hearts.

My Prayer for Today … Lord, show me YOUR will through YOUR word; and I will follow YOUR ways. And I pray for the privilege of leading others closer to you as I move through the New Year. … Amen

Blogger Note: Everyday during this year, my daily devotional blogs are influenced by the reading and study of the online blog entitled Today God Is First [TGIF], authored by Os Hillman. If you GO TO THIS LINK  on the date of my blog, you’ll find a link to read Hillman’s TGIF blogs; or you can subscribe to the blog via email at that site.

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