The Journey Thoughts

December 6, 2016

When David was King of Israel, he made some foolish blunders, and as such,
they teach us through his failures to look at our own lives, and watch the
things that we do, that we think are for the good, and would be pleasing to
the Lord.  One such time was when David was incited by Satan, to count the
people of people of Israel.  Now counting the people is not necessarily a
sin thing, yet it was pride in wanting to know how many he commanded.  It
was not a census ordered by God, and he did have God's ear.  Even his
commander Joab said to him: "Joab replied, 'May the Lord multiply the number
of His people a hundred times over! My lord the king, aren't they all my
lord's servants? Why does my lord want to do this? Why should he bring guilt
on Israel? 1 Chronicles 21:3  David got what he wanted anyway, and Joab did
what he was told. At the time, Gad, who was David's seer, was told by the
Lord, God, to tell David that He would give him 3 choices as a punishment
for doing a census, that God had not ordered.  Now back in Exodus, God told
Moses to do a census, but that every man was to pay when they were
registered.  God had an order for doing this His way, and David was doing
his own thing.  The punishment for not doing the census as God had ordered
was a plague.  Of the three choices that God gave David for his punishment,
one was the plague, and God caused 70,000 men to die.  David repented of his
sin, and told the Lord to make him suffer because this was his sin, and not
the peoples.  So God stopped the plague.  David said: "Wasn't I the one who
gave the order to count the people? I am the one who has sinned and acted
very wickedly. But these sheep, what have they done? My Lord God, please let
Your hand be against me and against my father's family, but don't let the
plague be against Your people. 21:17 David took responsibility for his sin.
So the lesson today is to cause us to take a deep look at ourselves and see
if we are willing to take responsibility for the things we do that make God,
unhappy.  Do we try to justify our sin by convincing ourselves and others
that what we are doing is for the Lord?  David could have said, "This is for
the Lord." But that would not have changed the sin he committed.  I often
wonder how often the things that befall us are not tests to strengthen us,
but perhaps punishment for the way we are living.  We are forgiven when we
believe in Jesus, and put our hope in Him, but that doesn't mean we don't
have to face consequences for our behavior.  Nowhere does it say, that
because we are forgiven that we no longer will be held accountable for our
sins.  On the contrary, accountability is very important to God.
Consequences for bad behavior must be dealt with, if we want to enjoy God's
favor, we must be willing to take responsibility for our actions or
inactions. We must be willing to be held accountable to God.  He is ever
forgiving, but we, like David, still have to see the times we march out on
our own, and do things that we justify as righteous, but do not have the
blessing of the Lord, and if honest about it, will continue even when
prompted by the Holy Spirit to refrain, but we do it anyway.  David was a
man after God's own heart, not because he never messed up, but because he
took responsibilities for the things he did that displeased God, even when
he did them not even realizing at the time he was sinning. He repented and
got right again with the Lord, for he loved the Lord, and his ultimate
desire was to please Him.  It's not too late, to come again to the altar of
God to worship, to honor our Lord, and to repent of what we have done in the
flesh, justifying our sin.  Go to the altar, that place where you can meet
with Him one on one, and see if there is anything that you have been
involved in, that is not God-honoring and let Him refresh you, as you
restore your heart to Him.

Pastor Andy

Heavenly Father,  as David would pen to You, "Search me, God, and know my
heart; test me and know my concerns. See if there is any offensive way in
me; lead me in the everlasting way." Lord, I ask that You search my heart
and reveal it to me, so that I may also be led in the way everlasting,
knowing that my heart can get very deceptive at times.  You, however, can
cleanse us from those things we do in secret, to make us transparent before
You and all others once again.  I pray for all who call on Your Holy Name,
those who call on Jesus our Lord, and Savior, to please help us be more like
You.  I pray for those who suffer, some in silence, and these I lift to You
daily. Would you heal and comfort?  I pray then for: Kathryn, the Dement
family, Mary Ruiz, Betty H., Veronica, Douglas, Fritz, Kaitlyn's
grandfather, Carlie, Lynn, Don, Barrett's, Josh, Eric, Peggy, Rheba, Ada,
Carol's family, Mary, Dillon, Tara, Kristena, Kristen, Marcy, Kenny,
Carolyn, Gene, Terry, Angie, Isabel, Ellen, William, Dwight, Jim, Vanessa,
Becky, the Markle family, the Young family, Travis, Max, Rita, Pastor
Berkey, Nancy, June, JT, Eva, Candace, Meredith, Barbara, Mike S., Ramona,
Loren, Ben, Robby, Kathy, Montella, Charlie, Kim, Nada, JV, Shelly and her
mom, Richard and his dad, Terry's dad, Pam and her son, Kelly and her son,
Julissa, Abby, Malachi, Corbin, Ryan, Olivia, Jeremiah, Joanna, Tom, Evelyn,
Joy, Ruth, BJ, Ida, Betty, Briggs church, Jackie Ann, Tonia, Todd, Liam,
Aiden, Alan, Fisher, Tuly, Michelle, Trevor, Maria, Choya, Alex, Ken, Sandy,
Andrea, Shannon, Robert, Pat, Ryan, Tyson, Wendy, Joyce, Shelbi, Gus, Lisa,
Alice, David, Phyllis, Devon, Marlaina, Cynthia, Johnny, Annette, Kim, Gary,
Gavin, Shawn, Laurie, Heather, Codi, Ron, Deane, Dan, Pam, Mike, Austin,
Harriet, Fred, Dotty, James, Scott, April, Craig, Hunter, Asher, Lynette,
Patrick, Kathy, Jennifer, Abe, Trent, Garret, Mayeaux, Ben, Jason, Ashley,
Marc, Macy, Jade, Bob, Tracy, Abraham, Elijah, Japheth, Matt, Liz, Matt,
Bethany, Mike, Megan, Jeff, Laura, Carmello, Kaitlyn, Tim, Michele.  Lord,
renew a right Spirit within us, that we may see Your face today, for I pray
in Jesus name.

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