November 16

Proverbs 30:4-5 (NIV) 4Who has gone up to heaven and come down? Who has gathered up the wind in the hollow of his hands? Who has wrapped up the waters in his cloak? Who has established all the ends of the earth? What is his name, and the name of his son? Tell me if you know! 5"Every word of God is flawless; he is a shield to those who take refuge in him.

Who? The Word of God, the flawless One! He is the One who has ascended into heaven, but He first descended into the earth to be one of us. He gathers the wind in the hollow of His hands. The Spirit goes from Him and you hear His sound but only He knows where He is going. He is the One who has wrapped up the waters in His cloak. It is the washing of the water of the Word that prepares us to be the bride of Christ. He is the One who established the ends of the earth.

What is His name? JHWH! And what is His Son's name? Jesus, the Christ, the one and only Son of God! Do you know His name? A thousand years before His birth God said, "This day have I begotten Thee". The Word became flesh and dwelt among us.

Have you let Him become your shield? What better shield than the One who made it all. Have you taken refuge in Him? What safer place could be found than the Almighty, who loves you and gave Himself for you? Trust in Him at all times. Pour out your heart before Him, the flawless One.

Meditation: My eternal Savior is the Creator, the Word made flesh, the flawless One!

November 16

Hebrews 10:25, 35-36 (NIV) 25Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another–and all the more as you see the Day approaching.

35So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded. 36You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised.

It is an epidemic in the church today. The worldly attitude of not being bothered has found a place in the hearts of many Christians. Stay at home Christians probably outnumber those that worship together. For many, it began when they were offended by something that happened where they found fellowship. It may have been a pastor that was immoral, an accountant that cheated, or power struggle that got ugly. Instead of realizing that flesh had gained one small victory, they counted the war for encouraging fellowship lost. Instead of striving all the more to make that fellowship strong and safe, they retreat to the comfort and predictability of their home. "I can watch a TV preacher." It was a problem in the first century also, (minus the TV) because people are prone to sin.

Fellowship isn't safe! Neither is God! God and the fellowship of believers will challenge you, test you, and change you. We need that to grow and mature. Instead of allowing the trials and tests to grow us, we often retreat to our cave and hole up so that our heart won't be hurt again. That is the way of stagnation. There is a fellowship of believers that needs you, and you need a fellowship of believers. The trials will strengthen and grow you.

If you aren't in a fellowship of believers now, ask yourself why. Don't throw away your confidence in what God can do in you and through your brothers and sisters in Christ. Stick it out! Pray it through. Be a part of the positive, encouraging transformation of your local fellowship. God has promised to bless you for it. The author of these verses warned us that as we approach the Lord's return, it is all the more necessary to meet together for encouragement. So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded.

Consider: How can I encourage others where I fellowship?