Author

Anne Johnston

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“Then said I, Ah, Lord GOD! behold, I cannot speak: for I am a child. But the LORD said unto me, Say not, I am a child: for thou shalt go to all that I shall send thee, and whatsoever I command thee thou shalt speak.” Jeremiah 1:6-7

Bible reading this month has been the book of Jeremiah.  It is not the easiest book to read, about all the judgments that God pronounced upon Israel and the other nations around them.  I am sure that Jeremiah did not know at the time that God called him exactly how terrible the words would be that he had to proclaim.  He tried to get out of the call of God by offering the excuse that he was young and that he was not a public speaker.  But the Lord convinced him that he had nothing to fear, and that He would give him the words to speak and always be there for him.

We also read of Moses offering God the excuse that he could not speak.  He was not a young man like Jeremiah, and in his case, God gave him his brother Aaron to be a spokesman.  In both cases these men had difficult messages to proclaim and lots of obstacles in their way as they endeavoured to do what the Lord had called them to do.

Recently, the Lord has been dealing with me about something that takes me out of my comfort zone.  I cannot offer the excuse that I am too young, nor can I say that I am a poor speaker, but I still have been struggling to get rid of my excuses and step out.  I can only claim the promise from Philippians 4:13 “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.”  I know that He has a plan and that He will fulfill it.

The Lord may ask us at times to step out of our comfort zone and do something different for Him.  May we not think of all the excuses why we can’t do it, but may we be willing to do whatever He asks us to do.

Prayer:  Jesus, it is so easy to make excuses, but help me to listen to your voice and follow in the way you are leading.

Devotion by Anne Johnston

 

“Be ye therefore ready also: for the Son of man cometh at an hour when ye think not.” Luke 12:40

Several years ago, I was privileged to attend a Gospel Concert that was being taped for a Video.  A well-known piano player was participating and during the program played a couple of Piano solos.  One of these was “I’m getting ready to leave this world.”  He was very talented and by the time he was finished, the audience was on their feet applauding.  Someone had arranged for steam or something to come up around him at the piano, making it look like he was in the clouds.

A couple of nights ago I was watching this video and having some good memories of being there that night.  As I listened to him play that song, I realized that it was a bit prophetic.  He probably had no idea that in just a few short months, he would be leaving this world.  After hearing him play many times, I feel confident that he had a relationship with the Lord, and as the song he was playing said, he was daily getting ready to meet the Lord.

When it comes time for us to leave this earth, it won’t matter if we have gained fame or fortune here on earth. It won’t matter whether we have had the applause of others, or if we have just quietly lived our life.  The only thing that will matter is if we have prepared for that day.  Have we made sure our hearts are free from sin, and committed to the Lord?

Jesus made a way for us all to come to Him when He shed His blood on Calvary, gave His life for our redemption, and rose again so that we might have eternal life.  We must make the choice to accept His plan of salvation, and every day be ready in case He calls us home.  We have no promise of tomorrow, He could come back again any day, or He could call you and I home.

Prayer:  Thank you Jesus for your great plan of salvation, and for your promise of eternal life with you.  Search our hearts today and help us to be ready for your call.

Devotion by Anne Johnston

“Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began,” II Timothy 1:9

The NLT reads: “For God saved us and called us to live a holy life.  He did this, not because we deserved it, but because that was his plan from before the beginning of time—to show us his grace through Jesus Christ.

When God created man He know that sooner or later they would fail and not live the life He planned for them.  He knew that eventually He would have to send a redeemer to rescue them.  In fact, in Genesis 3:15, He gave Adam the promise of a redeemer that one day would break the yoke of the enemy.  It would not be enough to send angels to fulfill His plan; it would take a greater sacrifice than that. God, Himself, took on the form of man, came to earth as a humble baby in a manger, and then went to Calvary, giving His life that mankind could be redeemed.

Paul tells Timothy that we have done nothing to deserve this great salvation, it is only God’s great love for us fulfilling the plan He had from the beginning.  We can do all the good things we want, give ourselves to helping others, and it will avail nothing.  The grace of God leads us to repentance from our sin, and the Spirit dwelling within us gives us the power to live and walk with the Lord.  We did not deserve that love, but we are so thankful for His mercy.

Andréa Crouch expressed it to so well in his “My Tribute”

“With His blood He has saved me, with His power He has raised me,

To God be the glory for the things He has done.”

Prayer: Jesus, none of us deserve the great salvation you have given us, but we are thankful for the plan you had from the beginning, and that you gave your life that we might have life.  We give you all the glory.

Devotion by Anne Johnston