FOR HIS PRESERVATION
Day 1: For His preservation
The LORD will keep you from all evil; he will keep your life. Psalm 121:7 ESV
The oxford dictionary defines ‘Preserve’ as “keeping something alive and making it lasting”.
God always protects His children and I can certainly testify of the grace of His protective
covering. If we are ever in doubt of God’s mercy over our lives all we need to do was listen to or
read the news about the destruction that is around us. We can easily be one of the statistics
reported on the news, but alas, God in His mercy has kept us safe. We have been privileged this
year to live the reality of Genesis 28:15 “Behold, I am with you and will keep you wherever you
go, and will bring you back to this land. For I will not leave you until I have done what I have
promised you.” He has been with us every step of the way this year. We should be thankful
because of manifestation of His faithful promise of 2 Thessalonians 3:3 “But the Lord is faithful,
and he will strengthen you and protect you from the evil one”. NIV. Isaiah 46:4b should sum up
our gratitude for the perseveration of our lives this year – “…I have made, and I will bear; I will
carry and will save.” Isn’t that awesome?
Do you think the Lord has been merciful to preserve your life and the lives of your loved one
today? If so, why not express your gratitude
Dear Lord, thank you for yet another day to express my gratitude to you. Thank you for keeping
me and my loved ones safe from all harm and hiding us under the shadow of your wings; under
the umbrella of your grace and within the shelter of your love. You indeed are a faithful father
who looks after His own children, with so much love and kindness that nothing compares to it.
Teach me Holy Spirit to permanently dwell under your watchful eyes; even in the midst of the
chaos in the world around me. When I abide under your shadows I know that I will be okay. Thank you also for my friends and colleagues who you have kept safe, in doing so, you have
saved me from Grief and pain. I appreciate you Lord and thank you for all these today in Jesus
Day 2: The Spirit of gratitude.
“You are my God, and I will give thanks to you; you are my God; I will extol you”. Psalm
We have the innate ability to be thankful, but it has to be intentionally nurtured. The humannature is such that it easily gravitates towards the negativity of life which can easily and effortlessly turn us into ungrateful people. A heart that is not thankful tends to look for the bad in all situations; to adopt an old age saying – looks at the glass half empty with needs and wants as opposed to it being half full with blessings.
But today, let us focus on being thankful to God for awakening our hearts to being thankful. The fact that you downloaded this book means that you are or about to embrace the spirit of gratitude.
It takes effort to be thankful in all situations we find ourselves in. when we go through trying
times, the first thing we want to do is express our unhappiness about the situation and lash out.
However, if we are intentional about developing a spirit and in turn a life of gratitude, the Holy Spirit will teach us how to see the good in everything and to be thankful in all circumstances.
So today why not say a big t hank you to God for the spirit of gratitude within us? Why?
Because on the flip side would easily be filled with an evil and angry spirit like Saul did – 1
Let us thank God for giving us the desire to be intentional about our thanking Him, despite the ‘grab and get it all’ attitude of the world we live in.
Dear Lord, today I say thank you for conforming my heart and mind to yours. I thank you for
awaking within me the desire to be grateful for everything you do for me. Thank you for the
benefits and blessings I and my family will experience for expressing our gratitude to you; they include happiness, peace, compassion, good health, and a deeper revelation of your love. Lord I pray that you continue to help me to make gratitude a life style and not a one-time event.
Enable my spirit, in gratitude to always say “bless the Lord, o my soul, bless the Lord all that is within me’; in Jesus name I pray. Amen.
Our Boat Like Peters’
Day 3 Our Boat Like Peter's
“Oh give thanks to the Lord; call upon his name; make known his deeds among the peoples!” Psalm 105:1 ESV
The opening verse says we make known to all, God's deeds – His goodness, love and mercy! This means that we have to go out there in the big wide world and expose others to Jesus Christ; through the words we speak and the way we live our lives.
Luke 5 tells the story of the calling of the fisher men called Peter. When Peter met with Jesus, it was early on in the ministry of Jesus. He had already gained a following. People were eager and hungry to listen to what he had to say. Luke 5:1 explains that “One day, as Jesus was standing by the Lake of Gennesaret; the people were crowding around him and listening to the word of God”.
Think about this for a minute, Jesus wanted to make use of the opportunity at hand – spread the word of God to all the people gathered to hear him speak. I believe He would have thought it was not practical to stand on the same level, in the midst of the crowd and speak. You can imagine those standing right at the back of the ground, they will not be able to hear or see him properly or at all.
So what did Jesus do? He got into Peter’s boat and asked Peter to push it away from the shore. This gave Jesus a practical speaker’s platform from which to address the people. Luke 5:2-3 reads “He saw at the water’s edge two boats, left there by the fishermen, who were washing their nets. He got into one of the boats, the one belonging to Simon, and asked him to put out a little from shore. Then he sat down and taught the people from the boat”. Isn’t that so amazing?
The same way Jesus used Peter’s boat, is the same way God would like to use your boat. Your boat could be your skills, your family, your position at work, your ministry, your website, your peer group or your social meetings. God desires to push yours out just that little further creating a platform from which He can use to draw men unto Himself. Will you give your boat to the Lord to use? Will your boat be a useful tool in the master’s hand? It is a privilege and an honour to be used by the Masters hand and worthy of giving thanks for.
Dear Lord, today I am thankful for your desire to use my boat as Peters for your glory. I am thankful for wanting to use my life to spread the word of God further to those around me.
I pray you continue to make my heart humble and willing to always give myself and all I have to be used by you and for your glory. I am thankful that you considered using my boat, to me it might seem as nothing, but to you it is the perfect platform needed to reach your people.I let go and give you my boat, freely to use for your glory in Jesus name I pray. Amen
The Work of Our Hands
Day 4: The Work of Our Hands
“And may the Lord our God show us his approval and make our efforts successful. Yes, make our efforts successful”. Psalm 90:17 NLT
Some people really love what they do for a living, whilst a lot don’t. Some people get a really good return and reward for their effort, whilst a lot don’t.
Deuteronomy 28:12 explains to us that the God will bless the work of our hands. For Him to bless the work of our hands, firstly we must be doing something with our hands. God is a giver and one of His many gifts to us is His blessings on everything that we do according to His will. He did not create us to be idle. His desire for us is to actively use the gifts and skills He has given us to enrich our lives and the world at large.
I read somewhere that “if you have food in the refrigerator, clothes on your back, and a roof over your head and a place to sleep, you are richer than 75% of this world. If you have money in the bank, in your wallet, and spare change in a dish somewhere, you are among the top 8% of the world’s wealthy people”. Imagine that!
To have a job which affords all of the above is the Lord's doing and the visibility of him “blessing the work of our hands”
There are instances where the work of our hands will not be blessed, I believe this could be instances when we go off in our own strength and forget to appreciate God and our ability to work, such as described in Isaiah 17:10-11 which says “Because You have forgotten the God of your salvation, the harvest will be a heap of ruins”. Here we see the danger of thinking we can go it alone, in our own strength and wisdom. Outside of God, the work of our hands will eventually become a pile of nothings; we end up labouring in vain.
Statistics shows that in the United Kingdom, 1.96m of people are unemployed, and around the world the figure varies but the number runs into millions. Whichever part of the pond you find yourself; that is have a paid job or not, the fact that you are doing something with the gifts that God has given you; He says He will bless your effort.
It is a privilege to work and obtain a good reward for your labour! It is the Lord’s doing and must be recognised as such. Today, I encourage you to be grateful that your hands find creative and rewarding work to do.
Dear Lord, today I thank you for the blessing of work; paid and unpaid. I thank you for giving me the opportunity to find and secure work to do. I know that it is your blessing. Thank you for blessing the work of my hands, for giving me bountiful fruits of my labour.
Thank you for my daily bread, for to wear and a roof over my head, Thank you for the shelter I reside under and the bed therein where I lay my head When my day is fast spent. and I’m tired from the day’s job remind me to whisper from a grateful heart…
“Thank you Lord for all you have done”
Keys To Open doors
Day 5: Keys To Open doors
“I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven” Mathew 16:19
As we grow in God we come to realisation that when we ask God to open doors of opportunity for us, what He does is position us at the right door of the desired opportunity and gives us the keys to open them.
The keys come in various shapes and sizes, such as relationships, business, job and social opportunities. When God reveals to us an opportunity it is paramount that we work closely with Him to understand its intricacies so that we can optimise its existence. Opening some doors might not be an easy task, but in patience and love, the Holy Spirit guides and helps us navigate our way through. Has God presented you with opportunities (big or small) lately? If so, give a shout of praise to God. Even if you didn’t make use of them as you should have, the beauty of journeying with God is that we learn from our mistakes and mature and ready to run with the
next opportunity that God brings our way.
That in itself is something to be grateful for, don’t you think?
Today, dear Lord, I thank you for presenting me with numerous opportunities daily to progress and bring glory and honour to your name. I thank you for all the opportunities I have been able to open this year. I also thank you for the opportunities I missed and failed to utilise, because through disappointments you teach me to trust and depend on you and hone my ears and heart to your voice and guiding.
Abase and Abound
Day 6: Abase and Abound
“I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need”. Philippians 4:12
“The word, abase literally means to bring to the base (the base being the lowest part of something, for example the ground). It also means to bring down low. Historically, abase refers to the lowering of oneself in a physical way. Biblically, abase means to humble or to humiliate oneself. This often includes such stances as lowering in rank, office, or condition; but certainly in state of mind.
There are examples of people in the bible who learnt the act of living in abased and abound states at various points in their lives; a great example being the twelve disciples of Jesus Christ.
Luke 9: 3-5 “He told them: "Take nothing for the journey -- no staff, no bag, no bread, no money, no extra tunic. Whatever house you enter, stay there until you leave that town. If people do not welcome you, shake the dust off your feet when you leave their town, as a testimony against them”
The twelve went around spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ with only the clothes on their back; relying on the generosity of the people they meet along the way. I try to visualise how they must have traveled those days, that after preaching from dusk to dawn, they must have been tired and hungry but with little or no food and no s helter, until they found one or returned home. But still, they kept going and never gave up. Paul sums up this ability in Philippians 4:12-13, he says
“I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me”. Even when there was lack, Paul kept going on about the father’s business, he continued the work that was set before Him; impacting and changing lives of everyone he came across.
In our world today, it can be a challenge to live in an abound state, especially in a world where most seem to measure the importance of someone through their appearance or wealth. Is the Lord teaching you how to live in an abased and abound state at various points of your life? If so be thankful. Each state has its benefits, for instance when we have more than enough, we are able to share much more with those around us. In turn when we have little, we learn how to be creative, resourceful and live within our means. It draws us closer to God as we are dependent on Him and helps us to appreciate the times and seasons of plenty. Whether we have much or little it is paramount that the state of our heart remains humble, and in humility express our gratitude to God for His presence and preservation.
Dear Lord, today I am thankful for times in life where I have had a lot and then very little. I am grateful for the lessons I have learnt in each state; lessons of knowing how to make use of the resources available to me and lessons in sharing what I have with others.
Regardless of the stance I am in, help me dear Lord to keep a humble heart, remembering that in the time of plenty it is you that has given me the power and blessing to create wealth; and in the time of little, it is you that is my provider and sustenance
Not a Magician
Day 7: Not a Magician
“And [so] the Scripture was fulfilled that says, Abraham believed in (adhered to, trusted in, and relied on) God, and this was accounted to him as righteousness (as conformity to God’s will in thought and deed), and he was called God’s friend. You see that a man is justified (pronounced righteous before God) through what he does and not alone through faith [through works of obedience as well as by what he believes.” James 2: 23-24
Sometimes I must admit, my prayers go like this "Lord I need a new job and I want it by next week, in Jesus name. Amen" The end. I then leave it at that expecting it to manifest because we have said a prayer. At the point of rendering the prayer, I had no intentions of undertaking any actions towards it, I just wanted God to answer my request and answer it now.
But with time, I have come to learn that God is not a magician! He is principled Father. Abraham, the father of faith really understood this concept. Abraham constantly made his requests known to God through prayers, but He also did something else… he worked with God towards to manifestation of his prayers. James 2: 24 says “…You see Abraham is a man pronounced righteous before God through works of obedience as well as by what He believes”
Abraham backed up his prayer with lots of actions. He had faith, he believed God and so he prayed, but he also believed that he had a part to play for His prayers to be answered, and that is obeying God and doing what he was required to do as he waited.
We must realise that God always answers our prayers, according to His will. The bible says, He answers us even w whilst we are still talking – Isaiah 65:24 “I will answer them before they even call to me. While they are still talking about their needs, I will go ahead and answer their prayers!” But there are times when we will need to do something, through God’s guidance, to bring forth the manifestation of
For example my prayer for a job requires action on my part. In believe and faith I must prepare a resume or work portfolio, apply for jobs and prepare for any interviews I have been invited to. The process of us doing something, our part to bring forth the manifestation is not because God is incapable of doing it all by himself; it is for our benefit. God uses the time and process of ‘our doing’ to draw us closer to Himself, understand the depth of His love and His faithfulness and to prepare us for the answered prayers, when they become a reality.
Dear Lord, today I am thankful that you are a principled father, one who builds and schools up His children the right way, as you bless them. I am thankful that you are not a magician who jumps to my every command and request, but a loving father who guides me to work closely with you, actively engaging me in the plans you have for me, to give me a greater and blessed future in Jesus name. Amen