Posts Tagged ‘Provision


Green Pastures

Good Monday morning to you! With the Lord as his shepherd, David said that he would not be in want. Why? Because God provided for all of his needs. The first thing he needs is food. What do sheep eat? Grass from green pastures. That’s what David says in verse 2:

He makes me lie down in green pastures. – Psalm 23:2a (ESV)

These lush pastures remind us that God knows what we need and He will guide us and provide for us. We can rest peacefully in His loving care knowing that He will provide. He knows what we need and when to provide it. So if you are worried about God providing for you today, know that your Shepherd sees you and He cares for you. You have a blessed assurance that He is watching over you and He knows where to take you so that you’ll have everything you need. Follow His lead today.

My Shepherd

Psalm 23 is one of the most beloved of all of the Psalms. David, the shepherd-king of Israel, begins with these words in verse 1:

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. – Psalm 23:1 (ESV)

Shepherds were not only in charge of tending sheep, but they were financially liable for every sheep under their care. So they had to provide for them and protect them. God is our loving Shepherd who provides for all of our needs. David says that with the Lord as his Shepherd, he has want for nothing. God provided for everything he needed and wanted. What a comforting thought that we have a Shepherd who is watching over us and providing everything we need. God knows what we need and He provides. Your Shepherd loves you and will provide for you. All you have to do is trust Him.

God Knows What He’s Doing

John 6:1-7 (NIV)

Some time after this, Jesus crossed to the far shore of the Sea of Galilee (that is, the Sea of Tiberias), and a great crowd of people followed him because they saw the signs he had performed by healing the sick. Then Jesus went up on a mountainside and sat down with his disciples. The Jewish Passover Festival was near.

When Jesus looked up and saw a great crowd coming toward him, he said to Philip, “Where shall we buy bread for these people to eat?” He asked this only to test him, for he already had in mind what he was going to do.

Philip answered him, “It would take more than half a year’s wages to buy enough bread for each one to have a bite!”

You may not realize it, but God knows what He’s doing. He knows all about your situation. He knows what you’re going through. He knows your every need (even before you ask Him). Not only does He know about your situation, He knows how He’s going to deal with it.
When Jesus saw the great crowds approaching, He knew that they were hungry. He knew that they would need food. He also knew how He was going to feed them. So He turned to Philip to test his faith. Would Philip see the problem with earthly eyes or with spiritual eyes? To Philip, the problem could only be solved by buying bread.
I heard Andy Stanley at a recent leadership conference say that leaders need to focus on the wow instead of on the how. Philip was focused on the how. How could they possibly feed all of those people? He didn’t see the opportunity that was before them. He didn’t see the potential wow of what Jesus could do.
In your life today, whatever crisis or problem you’re facing, focus on trusting God to provide the wow for you. If you’re having a hard time making ends meet, trust God to provide and follow His leading. He knows what He’s doing. He knows how He will provide. He will wow you with His power and His love. You’ve got to trust Him to do so. See your problem as God’s opportunity to open your eyes to His amazing power.
PRAYER: Father in Heaven, You know my every need. You know my situation that I am facing today. I pray that You will help me to give it over to You and to trust You for the answer and the solution. Help me to patiently wait upon You. In Jesus’ name, amen.

Enough For Today

…give me neither poverty nor riches,
but give me only my daily bread.
Otherwise, I may have too much and disown you
and say, `Who is the LORD?’
Or I may become poor and steal,
and so dishonor the name of my God. — Proverbs 30:8b-9 (NIV)
Give us today our daily bread. — Matthew 6:11 (NIV)
“Why can’t I seem to get ahead?”  Has this question ever haunted you?  Do you ever wonder why life seems to be such a struggle?  Why do some people have so much and others (like us) have so little?  We think to ourselves, if I could just save up $5,000 or $10,000, then I would be doing alright.  If I could just make a few dollars more an hour or a few thousand more dollars a year, I would be fine.  I just want to have enough for a rainy day.  “Why can’t I seem to get ahead?”
In the two Scripture passages above, I find a principle at work that is so important.  While it is not explicitly said, it is inherent.  With God there are no rainy days.  In the passage from Proverbs, the writer asks only for his daily bread.  Give me enough for today.  Jesus told us to pray for our daily bread in The Lord’s Prayer.  We need to learn to depend on God today for today’s needs.  Later in the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus said that we should not worry about tomorrow for tomorrow has enough worries of its own.  Focus on today.  Trust God today.  Is there anything wrong with a savings account?  Is there anything wrong with a retirement fund?  Not at all!  Unless we have more faith and trust in First Financial Institution or Mr. Mutual Fund than we do in God to provide our daily bread.  He has promised to provide for today if we will ask for today.  He clothes the flowers and feeds the birds each day.  To our Heavenly Father, we are much more valuable than them (Matthew 6:26, NIV).
PRAYER: Father God, help me to trust You today to provide all that I need. I know that You are watching over me and that You know what I need before I even ask You. Thank You for loving me. Amen.

Against All Hope

Against all hope, Abraham in hope believed and so became the father of many nations, just as it had been said to him, “So shall your offspring be.”  Without weakening in his faith, he faced the fact that his body was as good as dead–since he was about a hundred years old–and that Sarah’s womb was also dead.  Yet he did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God, being fully persuaded that God had power to do what he had promised. — Romans 4:18-21 (NIV)

We are living in hopeless times.  Our confidence in our economy and in our leaders is wavering.  Promises have been made by politicians (on both sides of the aisle) and while some have come to fruition, for the most part they have not been kept.  It seems as though companies are laying off more and more employees every day.  ISIS is on the rampage.   The threat of terrorist attacks is still very real.  Nations like North Korea are working on nuclear missile programs.  There is gun violence in the streets of Chicago where hundreds have been killed in what seems like a war zone.   Is there any hope?  Is our situation truly hopeless?  Not at all.

All Abraham had was God’s promise to be the father of many nations.  As the years passed, hope, like a burning candle, seemed to grow smaller and smaller.  Yet, hope continued to flicker.  Paul wrote that Abraham’s faith did not weaken.  He did not waver in unbelief.  In human comprehension, hope was gone.  But with God, there is always hope.  God has the power to do what He promises to do.  Do you believe that?  Where is your hope today?  Is it in an economic forecast or a politician?  Or is your faith and hope in the power of the God who does the impossible?  He is the God who provides and the God who loves and the God who, by His Son, forgives and gives real hope.

PRAYER: Father in Heaven, I need hope today. I need hope that things will get better. I need hope that this life isn’t all there is. I need hope that You are still in control. I need the hope of Jesus. Help me to trust in You. Amen.


It Will Be Provided

Abraham took the wood for the burnt offering and placed it on his son Isaac, and he himself carried the fire and the knife. As the two of them went on together, Isaac spoke up and said to his father Abraham, “Father?”
“Yes, my son?” Abraham replied.
“The fire and wood are here,” Isaac said, “but where is the lamb for the burnt offering?”
Abraham answered, “God himself will provide the lamb for the burnt offering, my son.” — Genesis 22:6-8 (NIV)

One of the amazing things about the story of Abraham’s willingness to sacrifice Isaac is Abraham’s trust and confidence in God.  He did not know how God would provide the lamb, he just knew that God would provide the lamb.  Maybe a thousand different scenarios ran through his mind.  Maybe he had it all planned out.  “We are going to do this and then God is going to do that and then everything will be cool.”  Or maybe Abraham truly trusted God.  He didn’t keep a lookout for lambs on the way up the hill.  He simply obeyed God and trusted that when the time was right, God would provide.

What about us?  When things are tough and we are having a hard time trusting, how do we respond?  Do we worry and fret?  Jesus said not to because the Father knows what we need.  If we will seek after the things of God, His kingdom and His righteousness, we’ll have everything we need.  We need to simply trust that God will provide.  Like Abraham, we don’t need to know the how, we just need to know the will.  He will provide.

PRAYER: Help me to trust You today, O Lord. May worry be far from me as I seek Your kingdom first. You know what I need before I ever say it. Thank You for this amazing love You have for me that was expressed through Jesus on the cross. Amen.


In Jesus’ Hands

Matthew 14:15-21 (NIV)

15 As evening approached, the disciples came to him and said, “This is a remote place, and it’s already getting late. Send the crowds away, so they can go to the villages and buy themselves some food.”

16 Jesus replied, “They do not need to go away. You give them something to eat.”

17 “We have here only five loaves of bread and two fish,” they answered.

18 “Bring them here to me,” he said. 19 And he directed the people to sit down on the grass. Taking the five loaves and the two fish and looking up to heaven, he gave thanks and broke the loaves. Then he gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the people. 20 They all ate and were satisfied, and the disciples picked up twelve basketfuls of broken pieces that were left over. 21 The number of those who ate was about five thousand men, besides women and children.

When you read the surrounding context of the miracle of Jesus feeding the 5,000, it is amazing to think about His compassionate love for people.  In Matthew 14, we read the story of John the Baptist’s beheading at the hand of Herod.  Jesus, upon hearing the news that His relative had been killed, withdraws to a solitary place by boat.  People had heard that He was near and followed Him.  Jesus does not send them away.  Rather, Matthew records Jesus’ response:

When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them and healed their sick. – Matthew 14:14 (NIV)

What love Jesus had for people!  He was brokenhearted and I imagine that He just wanted to be alone with His Father.  But Jesus had a heart for people.  He loved people and despite His broken heart and emotional exhaustion, He took care of the people.  He put others before Himself.  That is how we get to Matthew 14:15-21.
It was getting late and the people were hungry.  The disciples were tired and they just wanted these people to go away.  They tell Jesus to send the people away to the local villages to buy food.  Where in the world would 5,000 men, plus women and children, go to buy food?!?  It’s not like there were 20 fast-food options along the way!  I think that the disciples were looking for an easy way out (just my nickel’s worth).
Jesus had other plans.  He performs an amazing miracle with so very little – 5 small cakes of bread and 2 little fish.  In the hands of Jesus, a little goes a very long way!
You may think, “I’m just one person.  What difference can I make?”  In Jesus’ hands, you can make a huge impact!  You might say, “I don’t have a lot of money.  How can I impact the world for Christ?”  In Jesus’ hands, your tithes and offerings can change lives for God’s glory!  Perhaps you’ve thought to yourself, “I don’t have very much time.  It feels like it won’t make much of a difference.”  In Jesus’ hands, the time you can give will have an amazing impact!
It isn’t about what we can do.  It is about what Christ can do through us!  If we will give our loaves and fish to Him, He can multiply them and make a HUGE impact!  Don’t allow the amount that you can give to the Kingdom to become an excuse to not give anything at all.  Give what you can.  Give God all that you can give and allow Him to use you and your time, talents and treasure to make a powerful impact in the world for the cause of Christ.
PRAYER: Lord, help me to give you all that I am and all that I have today. I’m tired and weary. I’m broken and in need of healing. I’m hungry and in need of food. Help me to trust You for all that I need. Use me to make an impact in the world today. In Jesus’ name, amen.

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