Morning Musing: Proverbs 18:11

“The wealth of the rich is his fortified city; in his imagination it is like a high wall.” (CSB – Read the chapter)

I have done a fair bit of premarital counseling over the years. As I have, one of the things I have addressed with my couples every single time is finances and their thoughts on money. This is because financial pressures lie at the heart of a number of marital disagreements. One of the exercises I always do helps each partner reveal what for them is the meaning of money. With only one exception in 15 years, the answer has always been the same: Money is security. We live in a culture in which the vast majority of people view money as a source of security. While that is completely understandable, Solomon had something to say about it here to which we had probably give some attention. Let’s do that this morning as we continue our journey exploring how to get better at being rich.

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Digging in Deeper: Psalms 34:4

“I sought the Lord, and he answered me and rescued me from all my fears.” (CSB – Read the chapter)

What do you do when you are afraid? I don’t think many people actually have a strategy for that. Fear isn’t exactly something we count on. As a result, we are far more likely to be reactive than proactive in those times. And, when we are being reactive, we don’t tend to make the best decisions. Some people shut down when they are afraid. They are functionally incapacitated until the fear passes. Others take the path of the ostrich, hiding their eyes from it and pretending nothing is wrong. Some get angry and lash out at those around them to cover up the fact that they are afraid. Still others handle it in more productive ways. Perhaps a better question here is how you get out of a fearful situation. David offers one option here that is worth considering. Let’s talk about what it is and why it works.

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Digging in Deeper: Hosea 8:14

“Israel has forgotten his Maker and built palaces; Judah has also multiplied fortified cities. I will send fire on their cities, and it will consume their citadels.”‬‬ (CSB – Read the chapter)

Jesus once observed that where our treasure is, our heart will be also. His point was that what we consider the most valuable will be where we invest our dearest devotion. His exhortation in saying that was for us to make sure that God is our chief treasure so that we are most devoted to Him. But what if we are most devoted to something else? What then? God gives us a hint here through the prophet Hosea.

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Morning Musing: 1 Samuel 17:26

“And David said to the men who stood by him, ‘What shall be done for the man who kills this Philistine and takes away the reproach from Israel? For who is this uncircumcised Philistine, that he should defy the armies of the living God?'” (ESV – Read the chapter)‬‬

David understood something that the rest of the Israelite army, including Saul, failed to see. The conflict with the Philistines and specifically Goliath here was not simply a battle between two opposing armies. It was a spiritual battle between two opposing Gods. Goliath wasn’t just challenging Israel’s ability to field a suitable champion to face him in battle, he was challenging the efficacy of the God of Israel to oppose him in battle. Read the rest…

Morning Musings: Romans 8:28

“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”  (NIV – Read the chapter)

This verse is one of the single biggest clichés in the Scriptures.  We hear it often as a way to justify practically anything.  If something bad happens, well, God will work it out for good.  If something good happens, see, Paul was right.  If something good doesn’t happen quickly after something bad, well, we must not love Him very well.  If tragedy strikes, God can still bring good out of this even though you can’t imagine what it could be.  Clichés! Read the rest…