A Little Footstool

Reading: Isaiah 66:1-2

What kind of picture do these verses put in your head? Do you have a footstool? What do you use it for?

Sometimes in this busy world it is hard to remember that God is ruling over us. There are so many things that make us forget. We have our worries, our chores, and our responsibilities, and sometimes it feels like God is very far away.

We have to remember that God is all-present and all-powerful. He made all things, and therefore He can control all things. Even in a world of sin and sadness, He says that He will be with us.

God is so powerful that one day He will destroy this earth, His footstool, just as easily as you can break up a little footstool yourself. Can you imagine having that much power over this earth? That alone should make us tremble at His Word (verse 2).

However, for the man who is humble and contrite in spirit, God’s power is an awesome and comforting thing. The person who is humble, contrite, and fearful knows that the all-powerful God is on His side. God is looking at him and wants to take care of him. Is that what God wants to do for you?

The next time you need a chair or footstool to reach something, remember that it serves you, just like we should serve God, and obey Him in all things. For He rules over us with wisdom and lovingkindness, wanting all men to obey His Word.

For Further Study:

  • Today’s reading talked about being humble. What does it mean to be humble? Do you know any humble people? Read these other promises that God makes to the humble: Proverbs 22:4; Isaiah 57:15; Matthew 18:4. Did you notice that last verse? Children are an example to Christians of being humble! How special you are in the sight of God!
  • I’m afraid that sometimes we become too “used” to God. Sometimes people tend to make Christ their “pal,” instead of giving Him the proper honor that He deserves. This reading today reminds us that the Father and Son are worthy of our fear and awe. Read Psalm 135:20; Ecclesiastes 5:2; Jeremiah 2:19; 1 Peter 2:17.
  • How can you be more humble? What makes it hard to be humble? What can you pray to God about being more humble?
Posted in Earth, Heaven, Humility/Pride, King/Judge, Skies, Worship. Comments Off on A Little Footstool

Our Hearts of Clay

Reading: Isaiah 29:13-16

One of the most interesting toys in our home is an electric child’s pottery wheel that was given to us by a relative. It’s been great fun learning how to make things on it. However, pottery is not something that is undertaken easily. Have you ever looked at a piece of pottery? Perhaps in your home there is a cookie jar, clay jug, or some other shaped vessel. Even a plate is an amazing thing if you think about it ~ to think that a perfect circle could be formed so smoothly and evenly! I didn’t appreciate this until I attempted to make one of my own.

Pottery clay is a tricky thing. Ours came in a plastic bag and we had to cut off chunks of it that could be easily managed. Then it had to be kneaded and warmed by our hands so that it would be pliable enough to work with. We had to squeeze the air bubbles out of it and, sometimes, drip water onto it to make it the right consistency ~ not too wet and not too dry. The children were impatient. When could they use the pottery wheel? “Not yet, for if you tried to make something of this clay before it’s ready, it would not form properly. There would be air bubbles in your piece which would make it less strong.”

Finally, we could put our lump of clay on the wheel and start it spinning. The clay felt so nice and cold in our hands. But oh, what was happening ~ the wheel spun too quickly, we’ve pressed too much on this side, and now our piece is turning into a cone. Stop the wheel… mash the clay… start over. This happened many times.

We were able to make two lumpy little bowls that day. One is painted beautifully and sits on my kitchen counter, holding marbles and bracelets and game pieces, or whatever else I pick up from the kitchen floor for my children to put away. The other little bowl was dried and painted, but then promptly broke when we set it on the counter. We don’t know why. How sad to lose something for which we had worked so hard!

It’s no wonder that God compares our hearts to clay. Do they conform freely to His will? Do they struggle within His hands, wishing to follow their own tradition? Do they sin and show others by their behavior, “He did not make me”? Do they act like pretty little pieces but then shatter at the first sign of stress?

Now that I think about it, we haven’t used our pottery wheel since that first time. My children say it is too difficult. Perhaps in a few years they will have bigger hands ~ and more patience!

For Further Study:

  • Read Jeremiah 18:1-12. How did God show the Israelites that He was “the potter”? How did His “clay” behave?

 

  • Verses 13 and 14 from today’s reading are repeated in Matthew 15:8-9. Jesus used those verses to show that the Pharisees were hypocrites. They told others to follow God, but they did not follow God themselves Read the verses preceding these. What tradition were the Pharisees doing? What law of God were they breaking?

 

  • What have you done lately to show that you are “good clay” in your Father’s hands? What have you done that may have declared to others, “He did not make me”? What can you pray about these things?
Posted in Earth, Heart, Humility/Pride, Inspiration of the Word, Worship. Comments Off on Our Hearts of Clay

Worship & Praise to God

Reading: Psalm 95:1-6

“Daddy, look at the man in this picture!” Louis said. He pointed to a page in his Bible picture book. “He has chains on his hands and feet. I think he’s going to be put in jail!”

Louis’s father leaned over the kitchen table and looked at the book. “No, son,” he said, “this man is an Israelite. The enemies of the Israelites have taken over their land. This man and his family will be taken to a new land called Babylon. The Israelites will have to live there for a long time.”

“That’s too bad,” said Louis. “Will he ever go back?”

“Well, eventually the Israelites did go back,” said his Daddy. “And they were very happy to go back. Do you know that one of the first things they did when they went back was to rebuild their temple?”

“Why, Daddy?” asked Louis.

“They wanted to worship God. When they were in Babylon, they missed their temple building. They missed being with God’s people, singing their favorite songs and listening to the Scripture being read in their language. It’s very hard to be far away from home and not be able to do the things that make you feel close to God. Would you like to be told that you couldn’t see your church family ever again?”

“No, I wouldn’t like it,” said Louis with a frown. “I would miss all my friends at church.”

“Yes. And you know how quiet the church building gets when everyone leaves and we turn off the lights and lock the doors? Imagine if the building stood empty like that for years and years, and nobody could go in that whole time. How sad it would be if we couldn’t be together to worship! We couldn’t praise God, pray to God, or study together.”

“I wouldn’t like it,” said Louis, who enjoyed his Bible classes very much.

“I wouldn’t either,” said Daddy. “That’s why the psalms tell us to worship God. We need worship so that we can remember how great, and good, and powerful God is. He’s our Creator and Savior. He made this world – all the mountains and the seas – and He’s done so many wonderful things for us. We should worship Him whenever we can!”

For Further Study:

  • Can you have a worshipful attitude towards God every day? Read Romans 12:1-2 and answer these questions:
    How can our bodies (actions) show God that we worship Him only?
    What kind of attitude should we have about the world?
    How do we change our attitude about the world?
    How is the will of God described?
    We can live in such a way that brings glory, praise, and honor to God. That is how we worship God in our daily life. This is different from the assemblies that we attend with our church family. This is a worshipful attitude which shows others that we belong to Him!
  • What are the things you do to glorify God? How many different ways – with words and actions – can you say, “I love you” to God?
Posted in Church, Earth, Worship. Comments Off on Worship & Praise to God