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The Real Valentine

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“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16)

What’s Love really about?  Jesus showed us as He stretched out His arms on the cross and died for our sins.  I hope among all the Valentines you get & give this Valentine’s Day, that you “get” this one:

.                 For God so loVed the world,
.                       That He gAve
.                             His onLy
.                             BegottEn
.                                    SoN
.                                        That whosoever
.                       Believeth In Him
.                           Should Not perish,
.                        But have Everlasting life.
                                                                 – John 3:16

You Keep Me Safe, O God

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Scripture: “Keep me safe, O God, for in you I take refuge. I said to the LORD, “You are my Lord; apart from you I have no good thing.” (Psalm 16:1-2)

Observation: The Psalmist writes with a glad heart (Ps. 16:9). In what is his gladness found? This Psalm lists a great many things: God has assigned him his portion and cup, and made his lot secure (v. 5), given him a great inheritance (v. 6), instructed him wisely (v. 7), given him security and protection (v. 8-10), and ultimately opened to him the PATH OF LIFE… being in GOD’s PRESENCE! (v. 11). Certainly life brings its pain and struggles, but the Psalmist keeps that in perspective by remembering all of the good things that God has done for him, and all of God’s promises giving him hope.

Application: Right now we’re in really tough financial times. Everywhere you turn, people are getting laid off, stores are closing, and the news is full of gloom and doom. Everyone’s talking “stimulus packages” but all indicators show that it’s likely to get worse before it gets better. I don’t know what it was like for king David, but I know that in my lifetime, this is one of the scariest times we’ve faced as a nation. And yet, the words of Psalm 16 still ring true today. If I am looking for refuge, the Bible tells me where I can find it – GOD keeps me safe! (v. 1). Any of the good things that I’ve enjoyed are really just gifts from God (v. 5-6). How can I doubt God’s goodness? And why should I now start to worry that God won’t keep me in his care? In fact, the Lord is ALWAYS before me. He is at my right hand (v. 8 ) – meaning that he is right there with me in every high and in every low. So through it all, my tongue can rejoice, my heart be glad, and my body be SECURE (v. 9). Because I KNOW that God will not abandon me (v. 10).

Prayer: Father, as I find myself afraid about what tomorrow may bring, remind me that by your grace you “have brought me safe thus far” (hymn: Amazing Grace), and that by grace “you’ll lead me home.” Help me not to fret about the worries of today and the fear of tomorrow, but rather to take refuge in you – my only hope.  Amen.