God Is A Work

Look among the nations, and see; wonder and be astounded.  For I am doing a work in your days that you would not believe if told. – Habakkuk 1:5 (ESV)

I heard a statement the other day while in a conversation with a fellow pastor.   The statement was, “I don’t know about you, Tim, but I am worried about America.”  Certainly this is a statement that many of us have made in recent years.

Habakkuk was concerned about his nation as well.  As he looked at his nation, it appeared that the wicked were prospering while the righteous suffered.  So Habakkuk, in conversation with God, began asking some questions.  The first question was basically asking God why He was silent and inactive.  The response God gave to Habakkuk is a response that I find very intriguing.  He said, “Look among the nations, and see; wonder and be astounded.  For I am doing a work in your days that you would not believe if told.” 

God’s response to Habakkuk was basically, open your eyes, look around and you will see that I am at work.  As a matter of fact, God said that when you look and see that you will be astounded at the work I am doing.

Have you ever been like Habakkuk, crying out to God about how unfair it seems that the righteous are suffering while the godless seem to prosper.  I think if we are honest, we have all been there at some time in our lives.

I would encourage you to heed God’s response to Habakkuk when you find yourself having this pity party next time.  Look around you and recognize that God is at work.  You will be amazed by what you will see when your focus moves from self to others. 

Henry Blackaby reminded us in his book EXPERIENCING GOD, several years ago that God is always at work around us and He invites us to join Him in His work.  May this reality become our reality as well, God is doing His part, are we doing ours?

“Let us labor for the Master from the dawn till setting sun…”

In Christ,
Brother Tim

Wedding Days Are Special

“For this reason a man shall leave his father and his mother, and be joined to his wife; and the two shall become one flesh.” – Genesis 2:24 (NASB)

Wedding Days are special! This past weekend, we had the honor of celebrating one of the most sacred of all worship celebrations.  Our son, Lee and his bride of choice, Tabitha were united in marriage.

I had the privilege of officiating their ceremony and I must admit, it was a joy!  In the dual role of being both Dad and Minister, I found myself having to fight back the emotions of the moment as I stood before my son as a proud father, knowing that I was there also to represent the heavenly Father as well.

For a moment, I allowed my mind to run back to the Garden of Eden where God the Father of all creation performed the very first marriage ceremony.  I recall thinking, “I wonder how emotional He must have been as He united Adam and Eve in marriage?”  As I read the words recorded in Genesis 2:24, “For this reason a man shall leave his father and his mother, and be joined to his wife; and they shall become one flesh,” it was as if I were standing there in the garden as a witness to that first marriage ceremony.  Two becoming one, leaving and cleaving, “I” becoming “we”, what a great mystery it is indeed.

Also, as I was preparing for this grand event in the life of our son, I could not help but think the next great wedding celebration that the Father will have in the near future. (Yes I believe it will be soon!)  That is when His Son, Jesus will return for His Bride, the church.  What a day that will be!!! 

Yes, wedding days are special.  But none will be as special as the one that is approaching.  Are you ready?  Have you accepted His invitation?  Are you dressed in your wedding garments? Are you a part of His Bride, the church, the redeemed?  Or will you be like the virgins who ran out of oil and left to go find more oil and upon returning realized they had been locked out?

I implore you to place your faith in the One who can and will save you!

In Christ,
Brother Tim

O, Taste And See That The Lord Is Good

I will bless the Lord at all time; His praise shall continually be in my mouth.  My soul will make its boast in the Lord; The humble will hear it and rejoice.  O magnify the Lord with me, let us exalt His name together.  - Psalm 34:1-3 (NASB)

Over the last couple of months I have been teaching from selected Psalms during our Wednesday evening prayer service.  As I was preparing for this week’s study of Psalm 34, I was immediately reminded of two choral anthems that I had used in past years whose texts come directly from this Psalm. “O Magnify, O Magnify the Lord With Me” and “O Taste and See”.  Both anthems were exciting to sing, exciting to hear, and were also tunes that stuck with you. As a matter of fact, I have been singing them all day today.

The psalmist gives us a great word of encouragement within this psalm that I would like to bring to your attention today.  He says we are to Bless the Lord, Boast in the Lord, and Invite others to do the same. 

First, he reminds us to bless the Lord at all times.  You may ask, “How can I do that?”  Well he answers that for you in the next statement, “His praise shall CONTINUALLY be in my mouth.” (Emphasis mine!)  Did you see the word, continually?  If we are filling our mouths with words of praise then there will not be much room for anything else.   When you reflect on the greatness and goodness of God, you should not have trouble filling your mouth with His praises.

The second thing the psalmist states is that we are to boast in the Lord.  When we boast about something or someone, we usually find ourselves getting pretty loud and proud, right?  That is what the psalmist is saying to us here as well.  We should be proud to boast in the greatness of our God (notice whose greatness we are boasting in).  As we boldly proclaim the greatness of our God before others, those who are humble around us will hear and rejoice as well.  What about those who are not humble?  I can assure you that there are those in this world that do not want to hear.  However, if we proclaim boldly, they will hear of the greatness of our God.  We can pray that God will humble them and bring them to the point of surrender in their lives.  When that happens, they too will rejoice!

The final thought in this passage is that we are to invite others to do the same.  Isn’t that what he says in verse 3? “O magnify the Lord WITH me, And let us exalt His name TOGETHER.” (Emphasis mine!)  Do you see those two words?  "With" and "together" both indicate an invitation for others to join you in an activity.  You are not saying to someone, “O magnify or exalt the Lord FOR me.”  When we invite someone to join us, the invitation is to join us in an activity in which we are already participating.  There is power in corporate praise and the psalmist reminds us of this truth with this simple invitation.

These first three verses give these simple instructions to us but I get really pumped when I read verses 8-10 of this psalm.  They give me proof once again that the God I serve is faithful and true and that He satisfies all my needs. “O taste and see that the Lord is good…For to those who fear Him there is no want.” (Psalm 34 8a, 10b NASB)

I encourage you, my brothers and sisters in Christ, to join me today in exalting and magnifying our Lord together.  If you do not know Christ personally, I pray that you will accept the invitation of the Psalmist to taste and see that the Lord is good.

In Christ,
Brother Tim