He lives in relationship with God (2) - 2 September 2014

Yesterday we learned that the most important dimension of true manhood his relationship with God. For the next two days we will explore this in more detail.

To strengthen his relationship with God, he studies the Word. Together with the psalmist, he sings of his love for the Word of God. Read Psalm 119:97-113.

How I love your law!

I think about it all day long.

Your commandment is with me all the time

and makes me wiser than my enemies …

From Daniel of old he learns to pray with unconditional surrender. Daniel continued to pray regularly, despite the proclamation of a law which prohibited worship of anyone other than the king.

When Daniel learnt that the order had been signed, he went home. In an upstairs room of his house there were windows that faced towards Jerusalem. There, just as he had always done, he knelt down at the open windows and prayed to God three times a day. When Daniel’s enemies observed him praying to God, all of them went together to the king to accuse Daniel.

Daniel 6:10-12a

From the account of the birth of Jesus Christ and the actions of Joseph, we learn that a man who is in a relationship with God submits to God’s will for his life.

This was how the birth of Jesus Christ took place. His mother Mary was engaged to Joseph, but before they were married, she found out that she was going to have a baby by the Holy Spirit. Joseph was a man who always did what was right, but he did not want to disgrace Mary publicly; so he made plans to break the engagement privately. While he was thinking about this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph, descendant of David, do not be afraid to take Mary to be your wife. For it is by the Holy Spirit that she has conceived. She will have a son, and you will name him Jesus—because he will save his people from their sins.”

So when Joseph woke up, he married Mary, as the angel of the Lord had told him to do. But he had no sexual relations with her before she gave birth to her son. And Joseph named him Jesus. Matthew 1:18-21,24-25

A man in a relationship with God dedicates his life to the Lord. Hebrews 11:5 tells us about Enoch: It was faith that kept Enoch from dying. Instead, he was taken up to God, and nobody could find him, because God had taken him up. The scripture says that before Enoch was taken up, he had pleased God.

And can you say, I am he?

Prayer: Lord, help me to know you better daily through your word and to praise and worship you. Help me to submit every day to your will for my life and help me, like Enoch, to live to please you. Amen.

Hy staan in 'n verhouding met God (2) - 2 September 2014

Gister het ons geleer dat die belangrikste dimensie van ware manwees sy verhouding met God is. Vir die volgende twee dae gaan ons dieper kyk na hierdie dimensie van manwees.

Om sy verhouding met God te versterk delf hy in die Woord.  Saam met die psalmdigter besing hy sy liefde vir die Woord van God.  Lees gerus Psalm 119:97-113

Hoe lief het ek u wet!

Dit bly my elke oomblik by.

U gebooie gee my meer insig

as wat my vyande het,

en is altyd by my ...

By Daniël van ouds leer hy om met oorgawe te bid. Daniël het gereeld bly bid ten spyte van ’n wet wat uitgevaardig is om aanbidding van enigiemand behalwe die koning te verbied.

Toe Daniël hoor dat die dekreet uitgevaardig is, het hy na sy huis toe gegaan. Sy dakkamer se venster het na Jerusalem se kant toe gekyk en soos sy gewoonte altyd was, het Daniël voortgegaan om drie maal per dag voor sy God te kniel en Hom te prys, te aanbid en te dank.  Daniël se vyande het in sy huis ingestorm en hom daar gekry waar hy sy God aanbid en Hom om genade smeek. Daniël 6:11-12

Uit die geskiedenis van die geboorte van Jesus Christus en die optrede van Josef leer ons dat 'n man wat in 'n verhouding met God staan hom aan God se wil vir sy lewe onderwerp.

Toe sy moeder Maria nog aan Josef verloof was, het dit geblyk dat sy swanger is sonder dat hulle gemeenskap gehad het. Die swangerskap het van die Heilige Gees gekom. Haar verloofde, Josef, wat aan die wet van Moses getrou was maar haar tog nie in die openbaar tot skande wou maak nie, het hom voorgeneem om die verlowing stilweg te verbreek. Terwyl hy dit in gedagte gehad het, het daar ’n engel van die Here in ’n droom aan hom verskyn en gesê: “Josef seun van Dawid, moenie bang wees om met Maria te trou nie, want wat in haar verwek is, kom van die Heilige Gees. Sy sal ’n Seun in die wêreld bring, en jy moet Hom Jesus noem, want dit is Hy wat sy volk van hulle sondes sal verlos.”

Toe Josef uit die slaap wakker word, het hy gemaak soos die engel van die Here hom beveel het en met haar getrou. Hy het egter nie met haar omgang gehad voordat sy haar Seun in die wêreld gebring het nie. En Josef het Hom Jesus genoem.  Matteus 18-21,24-25

'n Man wat in verhouding met God staan, wy sy lewe aan die Here.  Hebreërs 11:5 vertel ons van Henog: Omdat Henog geglo het, is hy weggeneem sonder dat hy gesterf het, en hy was nêrens te vind nie, omdat God hom weggeneem het. Van hom word getuig dat hy, voordat hy weggeneem is, geleef het soos God dit wou.

En kan jy sê: Ek is hy?

Gebed: Here help my om U daagliks deur u Woord beter te leer ken en om U te prys en te aanbid. Gee dat ek my elke dag aan u wil vir my lewe sal onderwerp en help my om, soos Henog, te leef soos U dit wil. Amen

Everything has its time - 11 November 2013

Riélle Heine

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens … He has made everything beautiful in its time. Ecclesiastes 3:1,11a

The concept of time always crops up somewhere in our daily conversations. What is shocking is that it is mostly mentioned in a negative context.  Something along the line of "I'm so busy, I did not have time" or "Everything is so rushed " or "Look how the time has flown!"

Time, which was intended as a gift from God, has become our boss. Instead of being in control of our time, it feels as if time is a skateboard under our feet that we’re desperately clinging to, trying to stay on top! Many things we plan down to the last detail, but when it comes to time, we carry on indifferently.

Too often we think like this about time:

Everything can wait until later,

Everything in this world can be postponed

- until I feel like doing it

- until I feel better

- until my children are older, or out of the house

- until I’ve worried myself sick about it

... until it's too late.

Maybe there’s a letter, an email, a phone call or a visit you’ve been putting off for weeks - maybe now is the time to do it. Maybe today is the time to encourage, to forgive, to speak or to remain silent. Perhaps the time has now come to go back and make amends.

The other day I found this English poem tucked away between some cards I had stashed away (I wish I knew who the author was):

When I have time

there is a poem to be written,

a song to be sung

When I have time

there is a child to be led

a prayer to be said.

When I have time

I’ll tell you a story,

I’ll visit a friend.

Alas, time is gone –

The poem’s unwritten,

The song unsung

The child is a man

grown up unled

The prayer, ah! the prayer,

it went unsaid.

The story is ended.

Prayer: Lord, let me realise anew each day that time is a great gift from you. Help me not to postpone things. Help me to plan my time, to grab hold of the hours and use them. Amen

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