THURSDAY REFLECTION – God Will Not Fail You

Thursday Reflection – February 13, 2020

God Will Not Fail You

It is the Lord who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not fail you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed. Deuteronomy 31:8 NRSV


I believe we all have experienced failure in our lives at some point or another. Failure is not something that we like to experience and many of us try to avoid it. As a result of fear of failure we sometimes do not venture into the unknown. We stick to what we know or accustom to doing.
Moses was giving his farewell speech. He was now 120 years old and God had revealed to him that he would not enter into the promise land. He first addressed the nation of Israel encouraging them to remain faithful for it is God who will lead them into the Promise Land. He reminds them that God will not fail them and will destroy those before them as he did the cities of Sihon and Og. Moses then summoned Joshua who would be his predecessor to lead the people into the Promise Land and gave him the same encouragement. “It is the Lord who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not fail you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed.”
Joshua was entering into the Promise Land. This was a land filled with many nations and cities that were considered greater than Israel, but Moses reminded Joshua God will not fail him. The Promise Land was filled with many uncertainties and the people were considered as giants amongst the Israelites, but Moses reminded Joshua God will not fail him. The Promise Land would take years to conquer, but Moses reminded Joshua God will not fail him.
What a reassurance to know that God goes before our every uncertainty and certainty; our known and unknown. What a reassurance to know that despite all our fears of failure, God will not fail. This reassurance does not mean we will not face failure or disappointing situations. What it means is that failure and disappointing situations will not have the last say in our lives, because we serve a God who will not fail us. A God who is honest and trustworthy. Joshua did face situations of failure, but he bounced back and continued to do what was required of him and God came through. Our situations of failure will not last forever, once we remain faithful to God we must be victorious. Rest assured God is on the case. He’s better than all at keeping his promises.
Until next week stand on the solid promises of God. God will not fail you!

Shalom

Christopher Euphfa

TUESDAY REFLECTION – Never Give Up!

Tuesday Reflection – February 04, 2020
Never Give Up!

As Christians we recognize the inequality of the worldly society in which we live. The disparity between the rich and poor continues to increase instead of decrease. It is in this competitive and fast paced climate that we are called to be the voice of the marginalized, to measure the effectiveness of social systems in caring for the needs of the poor and vulnerable. We do this in a bid to establish a just society where all are guaranteed care, provision and shelter. This is the ideal, it is what we work towards. In the meantime, God has pledged to care for those who are in need. Today’s Watchword from Isaiah 41: 17 says: When the poor and needy seek water, and there is none, and their tongue is parched with thirst, I the Lord will answer them.

Out text gives assurance and hope. Assurance is found in the promise that God will provide for them when they seek water and find none. The text must be understood within the context of God showing the difference between Himself and the idols of Israel’s Babylonian captors. While their gods made of wood and stone were powerless to respond, Israel’s God was the God who would never forsake them, who would keep his promise made to them through Abraham, and who had the power to rescue and restore them. It was important for Israel to be aware of the nearness of God. He was right in their midst, having never left them. Today we too can be assured that regardless of what we endure, God will never be far away from us. This nearness of God should be a source of spiritual comfort for us as God will always be on the lookout for us. In Deuteronomy 31: 6, we receive encouragement not to be too confident in ourselves but to trust God: “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you or forsake you”. Jesus assured us in John 14: 18 ‘I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you’. It is because of this assurance that I say to you today, never give up, keep trusting God. 

The text also gives us hope. The thirst of the poor and needy mirrors the desolation of Israel as they live in captivity. Captivity, whether physical or spiritual, creates desolation, shattered dreams and lost hope. Even as this was experienced by Israel then, it is still experienced by those captured by sin and doubt today. We lose out when we allow sin to control us and rob us of our hope causing us to doubt God’s sincerity in keeping His promises. It is to those whose hope is in the Lord that this promise is made. When they are thirsty but cannot find water, thirsty to the point of their tongues hanging out, God will provide water for them. We must understand this as God miraculously providing what was not there. The God who promises highways through deserts, rough places made plain, and a way where there was no way, now promises water where there is none. It calls on us to exercise faith, to have hope that the God of the impossible will make possible what has been promised. What are you expecting of God today? What have you been praying for? Be assured that God is right there with you, hearing and seeing your travails. Have hope that God who has promised will be true to His word. He has never and will never fail. He heals the broken, restores the fallen and rescues the perishing. I can attest to the many times that I have been emotionally, physically, mentally dry, and my God has rescued, refreshed and restored me each time. It is based on this that I say to you, even as you go through your dry spell, even as you experience your time of need, never give up, keep hoping and praying for God will make a way for you.  Amen.   

Bevon White

UNITY NEWSLETTER – February 3, 2020

MONDAY REFLECTION – Look and Live!

Monday Reflection – February 03, 2020

Look and Live!
All who were incensed against him shall come to him and be ashamed. Isaiah 45:24

As we roam about in this world seeking for purpose in life and how we may achieve success and fulfillment, there is always the tendency to explore a myriad of options to accomplish this. The Israelites were no different and seemed to have mastered this attitude and behaviour. They often turned their backs on God and their covenant agreement and served idol gods. And, they always reaped the consequences of their wayward actions.

Isaiah 45 serves as another of God’s call to Israel to follow him; they should look to him and be saved. In this process God points out the how to do this:

Look to the God who chose Cyrus to act on his behalf. God outlines the call and mission for Cyrus (vs. 1-3) and the purpose behind God’s calling and mission for Cyrus (vs. 4-7).

Look to the God who created everything. Hear God calling to creation in verse 8: “Rain down, you heavens, from above, and let the skies pour down righteousness; let the earth open, let them bring forth salvation, and let righteousness spring up together. I, the Lord, have created it.” So God points out the foolishness of resisting the Creator (vs. 9-10) and this God of all creation will raise up Cyrus and deliver His people (vs. 11-13).

Look to the God who is above all gods (vs. 14-17). Here God declares His greatness and the foolishness of idolatry (vs. 18-21). He closes this chapter by calling all to look to him and find salvation, in full surrender (vs. 22-25). It is in this closing section that God warns in today’s Watchword that all who are opposed to God’s governance and laws shall be ashamed. The enemies of God shall see their own folly and they shall be ashamed that they have dared to oppose one so mighty and so glorious as the living God.

Today’s text invites us to submit ourselves to the lordship of the Sovereign God for there is not a better choice to make. As we do so, we should also challenge others to surrender their lives to the Lord. They must be made aware of the joylessness and emptiness that accompany those who live outside of God and the dire consequences of such actions. Yet, there is awesome joy and fulfilment in serving God.

Charles Spurgeon tells his own story: “I had been wandering about, seeking rest, and finding none, till a plain, unlettered, lay preacher among the Primitive Methodists stood up in the pulpit, and gave out this passage as his text: ‘Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth.’ He had not much to say, thank God, for that compelled him to keep on repeating his text, and there was nothing needed, except his text. ‘…if he looks, the promise is that he shall live.’ Then, stopping, he pointed to where I was sitting under the gallery, and he said, ‘That young man there looks very miserable.’ Then he said, ‘There is no hope for you, young man, or any chance of getting rid of your sin, but by looking to Jesus;’ and he shouted… ‘Look! Look, young man! Look now!’ And I did look; and when they sang a hallelujah before they went home… I am sure I joined in it.”

Today, look to Jesus and live!

Jermaine Gibson

SATURDAY REFLECTION

Saturday Reflection – 01 February 2020

“Christ Jesus became for us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification and redemption.”                                                                                          1 Corinthians 1:30

Wonderful, Wonderful, Jesus is to me,
Counsellor, Prince of Peace, Mighty God is he,
Saving me, keeping me, from all sin and shame,
Wonderful is my Redeemer, Praise his name!

As Paul writes his first letter to the Corinthian Church, he brings to us, by today’s doctrinal text, a total understanding and appreciation of Jesus Christ, the Saviour of the World. Christ is everything to us – in that, he from God, gave us the true way to live, showed us the perfect example, dispensed for us grace and reconciled us to God, and we now have new life in him.

Paul’s writing in 1 Corinthians 1 centers around the problems that arise in the Church and in the latter part of the text (vs 18-31) after speaking to divisions in the church, now considers the importance of Christ as the center of our faith. We declare Christ to be the Lord and Master of our lives. That declaration comes from an understanding that he is the potter and we are the clay. That he is in charge of us and we surrender all to him.

This is important even so, that Paul writes to the church, to discredit our limited human wisdom and wavering human strength that we many times depend on, entrust our lives or consider of utmost importance. The danger then not only comes from our reliance on human standards, but also a departure from the spirituality of our relationship and service to God.  In this construct, we are reminded that Christ is the source of all things and the giver of all things and everything else is meaningless.

The text reminds us, that even the experience that led us Christ was divine, our interpretation of his love, presence, sacrifice and our response to it comes from God and not of own effort. When Peter declared Christ to be the Messiah, Jesus’ response to him highlights the fact that flesh and blood did not reveal it to him, but our Father in heaven. Our construct of worship and service should always be that we are led by Holy Spirit and that we follow in obedience. Truly Christ is the light of the world and in following him we will never walk in darkness but will have the light of life.

Christ is everything to us – our Lord, friend, brother and Saviour. By him, we understand the true nature of God. And if we truly consider it, we will find that everything about Christ was special and teaches us something. It is for us to draw on these experiences and lessons as we live as his children. Let our worship become our lifestyle as we worship in spirit and in truth and let us always strive to seek the will of God and do it – and in doing, give of our best. In him, is all truth and is life eternal. Let Go by Let God, through Christ Jesus, save us, fill us and lead us to eternal life.

Until next week, let us discern the Holy Spirit as we seek the Christ who taught and showed us the way to live and who reconciled us to God. And may we in this new relationship with God experience the true wisdom and strength, the solid joy and lasting treasure poured out to us in his amazing grace and unending love.

Dominic J. Blair