Favor in the Eyes of God

Seek God_See God_Small

We’ve been talking about seeking and seeing God, but what does God see when he looks at you? What did God think when he looked at Noah? Genesis 6:18 says the he found favor in the eyes of God.

What are you doing to be honorable in the sight of God and man? 2 Corinthians 8:21 says “For we are taking pains to do what is right, not only in the eyes of the Lord but also in the eyes of man.” What are you doing to be honorable in God’s house? What about your house and the world around you? What does Proverbs 3:4 say? “Then you will win favor and a good name in the sight of God and man.” Isn’t that a great goal? To win favor AND a good name in the sight of God and man. Why is it important to have a good name with God and man? Do you think that takes a lot of work? What kind of work does it require?

When God appeared to Abraham as the three men, Abraham said, “If I have found favor in your eyes, my lord, do not pass your servant by.” (Genesis 18:3) Please, God, do not pass me by was Abraham’s urgent plea. Psalm 77:7 shows an entirely different scenario: “Will the Lord reject forever? Will he never show his favor again?” What a terrifying thought! For God to never show his favor again on us!

Let’s look at a few more verses about eyes. Use your Bible to look up the verses and answer the questions.

  • Nehemiah 5:19: What does Nehemiah ask of God?
  • I Peter 3:12: Who are the eyes of the Lord on?
  • Proverbs 15:3: Where are the eyes of the Lord? Who is He watching?

Eyes of the Lord.jpgWhat have you done to win favor with God and man in your lifetime? What are you doing daily? What do you do daily to help you stay focused on what God’s will for you is?

Feel free to share in the comment box below any words that can encourage each of us. (Comments will be reviewed before published.)

Eyes That Seek God

We ended our last conversation with the phrase, Seek God, See God. Our focus was on seeking God and God’s face. Let’s shift now to our faces and begin by looking at our eyes. I read a description of the eye that said it is the origin of sight. What kind of eye sight do you have? Jesus tells us that “The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are healthy, your whole body will be full of light. But if your eyes are unhealthy, your whole body will be full of darkness. (Matthew 6:22,23)

Are your eyes healthy? What do they see? Do you have eyes but fail to see, and ears but fail to hear? (Mark 8:18) I John 2:16 warns us that: For everything in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—comes not from the Father but from the world. What are we looking at and what are we taking the time to truly see?

What should our eyes be seeing? What should we be looking at? We need to open our eyes and see the beauty in the world around us. We should look for the needs of those around us and how we can improve and enrich their lives. We should be looking for those we can share God’s love with.

Eyes that seek God, we will see God.

Challenge: Read Luke 6:42 and then check your eyesight this week. What are you focusing on? God? Studying God’s Word? Your family? Your neighbors and co-workers? Yourself?

Seeking His Face

May God be gracious to us and bless us and make His face shine on us.  Psalm 67:1 (NIV)

I love the way the sunshine feels on my face when I close my eyes and can  feel the warmth of the sun on my skin. How much more glorious will it be to feel God’s face shine on us? In I Chronicle 16:11, David says to “Look to the Lord and his strength; seek his face always.” ALWAYS!

Read Jeremiah 29:13 with me:  You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all of your heart. How do we seek God? With all of our heart. 100%.

Notice the words the are underlined: seek, find, heart, and all. How important those words are. Let’s focus on seek today and jump forward to the New Testament.

What does Matthew 6:33 say? But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness and all these things will be given to you as well.

What does the theme around these verses seem to be? Seeking God and His kingdom. How do we seek God? With 100% of your heart.

Let’s add another verse to this discussion:  Psalm 11:7 tells us the “For the Lord is righteous, he loves justice; the upright will see his face. What that says to me is that to see God, I must seek God.

Remember Matthew 5:8? Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.

 

My challenge for you is to take time to find and read references to God’s face. My next post will be talking about eyes, if you want to find those verses in God’s Scriptures. 🙂

 

Reflecting on the Scriptures: Busyness

Busyness. What is busyness? One definition is when an activity is lively but meaningless. That’s how I feel sometimes. Life seems so busy but are the activities meaningful or meaningless – or a mixture of both? Recently, I have let busyness interfere with my studying God’s Word and writing to share from the Scriptures.

     Are you busy?
          Are you working?
               Are you idle?
                     What are you busy doing?
                          Work? Home? Kids? Church?

Let’s talk about work. How would you define work? Activity that is productive and meaningful. Is it more of a  performance of duty? Something you must do. Can you find joy in work tasks? (This sounds like the topic of another blog post!)

What does it mean to be idle? Inactive. Not working. Pass the time by doing nothing. Can you be busy by being idle? In other words, busy doing nothing.

Let’s look at verses from the Bible that compare being idle and working to help us reflect on what type of person we should and want to be.

Idle:

Proverbs 19:15: Laziness brings on deep sleep, and the shiftless go hungry.
What does shiftless mean? Dishonest? Idle? Lazy? How does laziness bring on deep sleep? Do you think it’s a peaceful sleep? When do you sleep the best – when you’ve been idle or when you have worked hard?

Matthew 12:36: But I tell you that everyone will have to give account on the Day of Judgment for every empty word they have spoken.
What kind of words? Empty words. Hollow words. How does it make you feel knowing that you will be accountable for every word you have spoken on the Day of Judgment? Does that make you think twice about the words you speak and how they are spoken?

I Timothy 5:13: Besides, they get into the habit of being idle and going about from house to house. And not only do they become idlers, but also busybodies who talk nonsense, saying things they ought not to.

Wow! These are powerful words. Let’s break this verse apart.

  • They get into the habit of being idle. If you can let being idle become a habit, can you make being a worker a habit?
  • Going about house to house. This makes me think that they had nothing else productive to do and just wandered about. What did this bring about?
  • They become idlers and busybodies who talk nonsense, saying things they shouldn’t. Gossip? Slander? Empty words?

I don’t want to reflect on my words and actions and discover that they show me as being idle and passing the time by doing nothing. How do we ensure we are workers and productive and not just busy with activities that are meaningless?

Work:

Proverbs 16:3: Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and he will establish your plans.
Commit to the Lord and He will establish your plans. God is in control even though we sometimes try to limit Him by making our own plans thinking that we know best.

In Ecclesiastes 3:17: King Solomon said, “God will bring into judgment both the righteous and the wicked, for there will be a time for every activity, a time to judge every deed.”
We will all be judged. Do you ever feel that some people who may be wicked or unfaithful never face consequences of their actions? But they will, won’t they. One day. With God’s judgment – not ours!

John 17:4: Jesus speaking to God says, I have brought you glory on earth by finishing the work you gave me to do.
Can you say these words to God? I (insert your name) have brought glory on earth to you God and finished the work you gave me. What kind of work has God given you? How do you know? Are you searching for an activity that will glorify God?

Think about the words in Matthew 5:14. I challenge each of you and myself to be “…the light of the world.” Let’s have our words and actions shine just as that “town built on a hill cannot be hidden.” Commit, be active, shine!

Proverbs 16_3 MV_Busy_Idle_Work

Peace and Strength from the Scriptures

My last post was about peace and the plan was to have two or three posts that week on peace. However, it seemed that so many things began to happen in my life that prevented me from having peace in my life. I’m glad to be focused again and want to share several verses that helped me this week.

Slide1

Do others think of you as a peacemaker? How would you describe someone that you consider a peacemaker? Would you describe yourself as a peacemaker? If not, why not?

Slide4

 

 

How important is it to have peace in a house? In a family? In a church? In a community? Can we truthfully say that we hope for peace for everyone? Family, friends, neighbors, and enemies?

 
I find comfort in these verses, because as Jesus shared, the world will not give us peace.

Slide2

The Scriptures tell us to not be afraid nor to let our hearts be troubled. There are so many distractions in the world around us that it is difficult to find quiet and peace except through Christ. How is that possible? Because Christ has overcome the world!
Slide3

 

Take some time to think about what peace in your life means to you and whether or not you have it? If you don’t, how can you search for and find that peace?

Next topic – busyness!
Something that can really keep us from having peace in our lives!

 

Reflecting on the Scriptures: Peace

Our word for Strengthen through the Scriptures is ‘peace.’ How do you define ‘peace?’ Harmony? Free from chaos? Lack of disagreement? Do you feel at peace right now – this very minute? How do you find peace in times of chaos or discomfort? Be honest. Don’t give the answer that you think you should.

Romans 8:28 is a verse that I keep in my heart. And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

I can keep those words in my heart and understand them in my head, but sometimes that means I have to wait for God’s plan. The Bible tells us to be courageous and wait. I must admit when I am waiting, the feeling of peace is NOT within me! Then I have to remember John 16:33.  Jesus said, I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.

Let’s start the week with a look at Peace in the Proverbs.

 Proverbs 3:1-2
My son, do not forget my teaching,
but keep my commands in your heart,
for they will prolong your life many years
and bring you peace and prosperity.

 Proverbs 3:17
Her ways are pleasant ways, and all her paths are peace.

Did you notice the ALL in that verse? ALL of her paths are peace!

Proverbs 12:20
Deceit is in the hearts of those who plot evil, but those who promote peace have joy.

Do you promote peace? Is promoting a high priority for you? There are so many that live for drama in their lives and sharing it with others. We should always aim to promote peace in our lives and the lives of others.

Proverbs 14:30
A heart at peace gives life to the body, but envy rots the bones.

Proverbs 17:1
Better a dry crust with peace and quiet than a house full of feasting, with strife.

Have you ever had a meal with family or friends that was full of contention and strife? How did you feel during the meal…and after?

Proverbs 29:17
Discipline your children, and they will give you peace; they will bring you the delights you desire.

This verse hits at home and goes back to God’s plan of giving instruction to our children. Is your life as a parent always going to be peaceful? Of course not. However, with teaching and disciplining your children will be more like to bring peace to you rather than turmoil.

Our challenge this week is simple and straight-forward. Look for peace in your life. Share with others how you found that peace and how they can find it also. Our memory verse this week can help us meet this challenge.

John16_33_Peace MV

Have a wonderfully, peace-filled week.

Kim_Oval