Good Morning, Church!
It is my prayer today that God's word would sound forth to every corner of the globe- and that you and I would be part of God's plan to get it there!
Today's readings: I Thessalonians 1, Isaiah 11-13, Psalm 112
"For from you the word of the Lord has sounded forth, not only in Macedonia and Achaia, but also in every place. You faith toward God has gone out, so that we do not need to say anything. For they themselves declare concerning us what manner of entry we had to you, and how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God." -I Thess 1:8-9
"Praise the Lord, call upon His name; declare His deeds among the peoples, make mention that His name is exalted. Sing to the Lord for He has done excellent things; this is known in all the earth. Cry out and shout, O inhabitant of Zion, for great is the Holy One of Israel in your midst!" -Isaiah 12:4-6
"Unto the upright there arises light in the darkness...He has dispersed abroad, He has given to the poor; His righteousness endures forever; His horn will be exalted with honor." -Psalm 112:4, 9
What an amazing testimony of the Thessalonian church- "the word of the Lord has sounded forth from you in every place..." Wow. Oh that someone could say that about us! Has the word of the Lord even sounded forth from us to Clayton?? Do people walking by our church recognize our faith out in the street- it says that their faith has "gone out" for their actions declare the faith they have! This is quite a challenge! We serve the living and true God; the transformation He has wrought in our lives and the grace He has extended to us should make us shout His praises from the rooftops and give all we can to the poor! We live in a dark time, where many do not believe in God- but unto the upright there arises light in the darkness- no place on earth is so dark that God's light cannot shine through His transformed ones!
Friends of ours, Billy and Joanna Coppedge, are serving God in Northern Uganda, and they represent these verses to me in very real and tangible ways! You can check out their blog for yourself www.coppedgeafrica.blogspot.com But what I am so blessed by is their fervent prayers, and the way they live sacrificially with the people of Uganda, in order that the word of God might change lives! They have seen great strides taken for the kingdom- that could only happen by prayer and faithful walking with the Lord! Their lives are truly declaring His word to the nations. And their ministry is even extending from Uganda into the Sudan- so your prayers are even more necessary!
But missionaries aren't the only ones who are called to declare His word to the world- every Christian is called to declare His word where they live- and their lives ought to speak the gospel far louder than their words! So as you spend time in prayer today, ask God to reveal those places in your life, those actions that may be hindering the gospel- and then ask Him to give you a renewed passion for His word and His kingdom! And also, please join me in praying for Billy and Jo and the work they are doing in East Africa!
To the ends of the earth,