Friday, January 27, 2012

Choose to live by faith -- Devotion from Mike MacIntosh

Now the LORD had said to Abram: "Get out of your country, from your family and from your father's house, to a land that I will show you.  I will make you a great nation; I will bless you and make your name great; and you shall be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you; and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed."
Genesis 12:1-3

If you sense that God is speaking to your heart to do something for Him, maybe even something radical and out of the norm, you may want to step out in faith and do it.  We see here that God is telling a 75-year-old Abram to get up and leave his country, to leave his family, and go to a new land by faith.  I don't know about you, but age 75 doesn't seem like a logical age for a guy to pick up and start a new career, or move to a new country he'd never seen, or travel without a clue of his destination.  But God makes a promise to Abram, and today, through Jesus Christ, I believe that promise can overflow into your life.

First, He promised to bless Abram.  And God wants to bless His people.  In fact, Ephesians 1:3 tells us that God "has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ."  You see, if there are three spiritual blessings, they're yours.  If there are three million spiritual blessings, they're all yours.  Instead of harboring bitterness, or being down and depressed, spend your life receiving all -- not just some -- of His blessings.

Secondly, God promised to make a great nation of Abram.  And He wasn't kidding.
Do you realize that from this point forward, Abram and his descendants are almost the only subject of the history of the Bible?  When you step out and live a life of radical faith, the Lord will cause you to have an effect on your family, your community, and your world.  People will be drawn to the Lord through your life.
And whether they are your children, your grandchildren, your friends, your neighbors -- the Lord will give you "spiritual" descendants, people who will receive the blessing of salvation through you.

Next, the Lord promised to make Abram's name great.  His purpose was not to make him popular, or famous, or conceited, but to give him a name that caused bad people to shutter, and good people to rejoice.  Proverbs 22:1 says that "a good name is to be chosen rather than great riches; loving favor rather than silver and gold."  God wants to give you a good name -- a name that causes people to say, "There's a woman whose 'yes' is 'yes,' and whose 'no' is 'no'."  And, "There's a man who lives what he believes."

God also promised to make Abram a blessing to other people, saying, "I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you."  Realize that God is our defender.  When you live a life of faith, you can trust that He will guide and protect you.  "If God is for us, who can be against us?" (Romans 8:31).

Today, choose to live by faith.  Like Abram, you may not understand exactly where God is leading, but you can trust His promises.

New King James Version ®, Copyright © 1982, Thomas Nelson, Inc. All rights reserved. Bible text from the New King James Version ® is not to be reproduced in copies or otherwise by any means except as permitted in writing by Thomas Nelson, Inc., Attn: Bible Rights and Permissions, P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000. This devotional message is provided by Horizon Christian Fellowship. © 2009 Mike MacIntosh. All Rights Reserved.

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