Saturday, January 12, 2019

Raising the Poor from the Dust

Today's Reading:
1Samuel 1:1-2:21
Romans 4:1-12
Psalms 74:18-23
Click on Text Link to Read Online

Focus Verses: 1 Samuel 2:7-8
7 The LORD sends poverty and wealth; he humbles and he exalts. 8 He raises the poor from the dust and lifts the needy from the ash heap; he seats them with princes and has them inherit a throne of honor. For the foundations of the earth are the LORD's; upon them he has set the world.

Hannah was downhearted about being childless and she prayed that God would bless her with a son. When her prayer was answered, she raised her voice in a song of praise. Her experience was a clear testimony of God's ability to raise up the poor and to lift up the needy. Her son, Samuel, would become the last and greatest of the Israelite judges. He functioned as a leader, priest, and prophet. He ushered in the era of  Israel's kings.

Response and Action:
God is able to bring about great things and great leaders from humble, weak, and unexpected places. I must always remember that God can bless and use me. Though I often think of myself as weak and inadequate, I will remember that God is not limited by my weakness and inadequacy. I will be careful to ask for God's blessing, strive to be faithful to use those blessings to serve Him, and be quick to praise God for the things he is able to do.

O God, bless me in ways that help me to serve and honor you. Remind me of your power and provision. Give me the courage to ask for the things I long for. Give me a heart that longs for your will. Teach me to walk in your ways and to give you thanks in all things. Forgive me for the times when I forget that my weaknesses do not limit you. Help me walk in your strength and grace. Through Christ, I pray. Amen.

Spiritual Formation Verses: 1 Corinthians 1:26-29
26 Brothers and sisters, think of what you were when you were called. Not many of you were wise by human standards; not many were influential; not many were of noble birth. 27 But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. 28 God chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things—and the things that are not—to nullify the things that are, 29 so that no one may boast before him.

Small Faith – Great God
by N. T. Wright

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