Daily Word Archives

September 2017 What Open Door posts on Facebook - September 2017




We know that Labor Day weekend is essentially here. The forecast says the first part might be a little damp.  No complaints should come from us as we remember what Texas and Louisiana are dealing with.


We continue to pray each day for these people: for encouragement, divine and human help and assistance in all of their needs, protection for those in harm's way and those involved in rescue operations, wisdom for those in charge and making decisions, for the money and resources that will be needed long-term, and the mercy of God in every situation and circumstance for people facing loss from the storm.


May we remember these people in our prayers and reaching out as we enjoy our Labor Day festivities. Be safe and blessed.




As we consider Labor Day, we look for a moment at labor or "work" as we might call it. We know it can get tedious and be a drag at times. Yet there is something about a job well done that brings satisfaction and produces good results (fruit of our labor).


Consider what may happen if we did not have to work - if the ground just produced on its own and everything just worked by itself. We would likely become a most-lazy people just sitting around looking for the latest pleasure.


According to the Bible our labors will cease one day and we will get to enjoy all the wonders of a new heaven, new earth and eternal life. But everything about us will be changed then - no sin nature and no more laziness. Until then, we have a lot to do and a lot we can do to make things better.


That should be our motivation - to use the talents God gives us to bear fruit and be a blessing.


Knowing that whatsoever good thing any man doeth, the same shall he receive of the Lord, whether he be bond or free. ~ Ephesians 6:8


May you indeed be blessed in your deeds ~ James 1:25




Yesterday our church participated in the national day of prayer that our President proclaimed for September 3, 2017. We prayed for many things that would seem obvious in light of hurricane Harvey.


One area that was particularly emphasized was the schools. We know what it means to get ready for a new school year - we have done it for a number of years. We know what our county goes through in order to prepare. It is not just the building and grounds; it includes all the transportation issues and what has to be coordinated.


Can we even imagine what the city of Houston is facing in this regard - in addition to all the towns and rural areas? Add to this what the parents are facing with this in regards to their children. Now throw all the daycares into this mix.


Thus we called on the mercy, wisdom and power of God. Not just yesterday but may we continue in the days ahead. We pray that people in leadership will have the plans and the money to deal with this daunting task. We pray for ministries to have the ability and favor that they need to do an excellent job. We pray for all the people who are facing situations that we know are very discouraging - that they be encouraged, that they see the move of God, the love of God, and the help their fellow man. 


As many of us will enjoy a nice and peaceful holiday, may we remember in prayer those who are laboring tirelessly on this Labor Day. We know they need help and thus we pray as we see in scriptures to come boldly before God's throne to receive grace to help in time of need ~ Hebrews 4:16




We especially pray for our school as the first day of the new year begins. Though we have done it for over 35 years, the first day is always fresh and new - new parents, students and staff. There are always new challenges as education and society are always changing.


We pray for good success for everyone - for parents that they may prosper and we thank them for entrusting the education of their children to us. For each student to adjust and make good progress in all areas. And for faculty to have wisdom and the heart of God in all areas of service.


Thank you Lord for a good and safe year for us and other Christian and public schools. We serve the Lord with gladness.




Today we begin a series on the "goodness" of God. From an early age children begin to learn and experience the concepts of good, bad, right and wrong - basically in their actions and words.


We use these terms of description often - he is a good person, that is a good idea, this is a good thing they doing, etc.


Many of us grew up in a time when the differences between good and bad were usually quite apparent. There was not a whole lot of argument on major areas of behavior and speech. But today we know that is quite different. It has taken a toll on our society and young people especially. We may get into some of this before the series ends.


But each of us might ask ourselves: What is my concept of God as far as Him being "good" is concerned?


Jesus came presenting God as a good Father giving good things to His children ~ Matthew 7:11


We invite you to do your own study of goodness from a Biblical standpoint and as it pertains to God. We have a lot to learn and we thank God for the opportunity to do so.




Today we want to take time to earnestly pray for all the people who are dealing with hurricane Irma. If you could put yourself in their place: not knowing a lot except they are telling you to get out. You do your best to secure your property and you are leaving it and most of your stuff behind. You hope you take all that you will need.


As we see the number of people on the move, we might get a little sense of the children os Israel leaving Egypt, Regardless of the level of similarity, our hearts go out to those whose lives are being so disrupted.


So please take time today to pray for the people and the entire ordeal - for God's mercy, favor, wisdom and blessing on everyone involved. Our faith and trust is in You heavenly Father and we thank for meeting the needs of the people in this situation ~ we pray in the Name of our Lord Jesus Christ.




We continue today with the goodness of God. If you look up the word "good" in Vine's dictionary of New Testament words, you will find over two pages of explanation.  To simplify all of it, something or someone that is good is beneficial or provides benefits.


Also indicated is the concept of "being good" and "doing good".  It has been the subject of a philosophical argument for centuries: Can you really be good without doing good? Does doing something good make you good? How long do you have to be or do either in order for goodness to be established?


As you can imagine, the whole thing can get complicated and debated to the place where people can get tired of it.


For believers in Jesus, He said something quite startling when someone called Him good:  And Jesus said unto him, Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God. ~ Mark 10:18.


All of us likely have our own standards of goodness from a human perspective. But God's standard of goodness is way beyond ours just as His standard of love is way beyond ours. Jesus is saying that God is the standard of goodness,


Beyond just being good, we will see that God does good as we continue looking at this subject. We pray not only that the eyes of our understanding be enlightened on this subject, but that we would see and recognize God's goodness in our lives more and more.


We do not care much about the arguments when something good is done for or to us.




As we continue on the goodness of God, we remember the reward for goodness we do:


Knowing that whatsoever good thing any man doeth, the same shall he receive of the Lord, whether he be bond or free. ~ Ephesians 6:8


It is interesting that when someone talks about their behavior, they often focus on what they don't do: I don't drink, smoke, cuss or run around. Or the young man who was asked how his school day went, His reply: I did not get in trouble today.


While these attributes (or inactions as they could be called) have some merit, they would be a very low standard of goodness. We usually evaluate goodness by what people do and not what they don't do.


We should be able to point to character traits that demonstrate some goodness. We remember a sticker we used to have for children at Open Door some years ago. It said: I was caught being good today. That is the kind of communication that parents like to see.


May that describe us on a daily basis - caught being and doing good.


We realize we have emphasized ourselves more than God in this post. We will look more at the God aspect of goodness tomorrow.


We also remember 9/11 today. We continue to pray for God's blessing, wisdom and peace in all of this - for the people who need it and for our nation as we go forward.




Continuing with God's goodness, we note a few things that Jesus said:


If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him? ~ Matthew 7:11


There is none good but God ~ Matthew 9:17; Mark 10:18; Luke 18:19


Jesus answered them, Many good works have I showed you from my Father ~ John 10:32


Jesus always presented God as good. Do you suppose the Pharisees would have characterized God as being good? How about many people today? Often people consider God on the basis of what they have heard. That was likely the case in Jesus' day.


But Jesus came presenting another picture and demonstrating it by the works He did. May God our heavenly Father continue to enlighten us regarding His goodness.




We want to look at some verses regarding God's goodness. Jesus said He does those things He sees the Father doing:


How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him. ~ Acts 10:38


Notice it was God's anointing that led Jesus to go about doing good and healing and God was with Him in it.


Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance? ~ Romans 2:4


God is rich in goodness and it is a blessing to be able to repent - to get a fresh start and in complete forgiveness with God.


Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning. ~ James 1:17


There is certainly nothing bad in this verse and we are thankful that God is not varying in it or turning from it.


May God continue to lead us into His goodness that we might in turn show forth goodness to others.




Again we note a verse regarding God's goodness as it pertains to us:


Wherefore also we pray always for you, that our God would count you worthy of this calling, and fulfil all the good pleasure of his goodness, and the work of faith with power: ~ II Thessalonians 1:11


Next verse:


That the name of our Lord Jesus Christ may be glorified in you, and ye in him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.


We see again the one purpose of God's goodness is to bring a blessing to us. We see it further in this verse:


Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is wellpleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen. ~ Hebrews 13:20-21


May we continue to grow, learn and be about the things of God.




Today we note some Old Testament verses regarding God's goodness:


O taste and see that the LORD is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him. ~ Psalm 34:8


For the LORD is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations. ~ Psalm 100:5


Praise the LORD; for the LORD is good: sing praises unto his name; for it is pleasant. ~ Psalm 135:3


The LORD is good to all: and his tender mercies are over all his works ~ Psalm 145:9


The voice of joy, and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom, and the voice of the bride, the voice of them that shall say, Praise the LORD of hosts: for the LORD is good; for his mercy endureth for ever: and of them that shall bring the sacrifice of praise into the house of the LORD. For I will cause to return the captivity of the land, as at the first, saith the LORD. ~ Jeremiah 33:11


The LORD is good, a strong hold in the day of trouble; and he knoweth them that trust in him. ~ Nahum 1:7


Oh that men would praise the LORD for his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the children of men! ~ Psalm 107:10


O give thanks unto the LORD; for he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever. ~ I Chronicles 16;34


There are so many verses in the Old Testament about God's goodness. Often it is overlooked because wrath and judgment are emphasized. We wanted to note just a few as we continue our study




We remember in the book of Genesis when God was creating and He said the various things were good. And finally:


And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day. ~ Genesis 1:31


We see that God did this for man - to enjoy, tend to, and have dominion over. God always wants to bless mankind.


We know the curse came and we see the results of it daily. Yet God still wants to bless us, wants us to overcome (I John 5:4-5), and richly enjoy the things He has given us (I Timothy 6:17)


May we continue to learn about and expect God's goodness.




We have looked at the goodness of God from different aspects and from all parts of the Bible. We have by no means looked at all the scriptures or delved into their explanation. 


But we would be remiss if we do not look at the other side. Many people accuse God and are troubled by things we read in the Old Testament - the wrath of God, what was done to some people, groups of people, nations, etc.


We readily state that we do not know everything in this regard and Paul reminds us that we now see through a glass darkly and we know in part ~ I Corinthians 13:12. But we would like to offer a few observations:


We remember the first born males in Egypt died at the hand of the death angel. Was it God or the thief that comes to kill, steal and destroy? God provided a way of escape as we know. We also remember that Egypt at the birth of Moses ordered all the male babies killed. We do understand reaping what is sown.


We might wonder why God would have Israel at times destroy a group even down to the children and animals. Consider today the groups, gangs and ideologies that want death and destruction - you bow to them, their god, their way of life or they will kill you. This might clear the picture up a little.


We should be glad that we have a God that will take out evil and will fight for His people. But it is not what He wants to do.


Will you fight for your family? Husbands would you take the action necessary to protect your wife and family from being hurt or killed by some person or group determined to bring harm or destruction?


But you are not out there roaming around looking for someone to hurt or planning some kind of attack or violence.  


This is what happens when evil is allowed to flourish. It does not just stay where it is. It comes to challenge, attack, hurt and harm.


God is longsuffering as we see throughout the scripture. We note the action taken by God for wrong doing was often years after the action had taken place. A great deal of time is often given for repentance.


We have noted many times that God has ordained government to bear the sword against evil - it is called a righteous thing. Thus one more reason to pray intensely for those in authority.


An interesting verse in the New Testament:


Seeing it is a righteous thing with God to recompense tribulation to them that trouble you; ~ II Thessalonians 1:6 


It has been said and we see it throughout the Bible that God will only put up with so much for so long. This can happen when God sees fit and at the end of the age we read where evil will be put away forever and a new heaven and earth will be made.


We say again that God is good and that He is always looking for a way to do good and bless people. But He will deal with evil and the people who intentionally promote it and do it - in thebest way it can be accomplished.


In the meantime, always stay on God's side even when we do not understand everything (which is often). - and trust in His LOVE FOR YOU!


Make it a point to look out for God's goodness in every situation in the Bible and His goodness in your life.




As we conclude our study of the goodness of God for now, we share this popular song on His goodness - for the young and older::






The Golden Rule is a principle many can quote. Christians know that Jesus taught it:


Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets. ~ Matthew 7:12


It is interesting that Jesus links this verse to the one before it:


If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him? ~ Verse 11


We often emphasize verse 12 because it talks about how we should act and think. But verse 11 is certainly the icing on the cake. In other words, God does the same thing He asks us to do.


May God help us keep these two verses together.




Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee. ~ Isaiah 26:3


This is a very familiar verse that takes diligence to do. The affairs of this life and cares of the world will attempt to take our focus away from the Lord.


This is not to say that we ignore responsibilities and the problems we face daily. Keeping our mind and focus on the Lord is the first step we should take to address any issue.


We remember that the Lord knows how to solve every problem we encounter - this is why our mind needs to be stayed on Him. May Hr quicken the word we need in each situation.





When we hear the word "exercise", each of us may have a different reaction. In our Sunday service we noted:


... and exercise thyself rather unto godliness. ~ I Timothy 4:7


When we talk about exercise, we are talking about putting forth some effort.

Thus if we are to exercise ourselves unto Godliness, we will need to put some effort into it.


We might first think of it in terms of Bible study, prayer, quiet time, etc. and they would certainly be a good part. But we also can exercise Godliness in all the things that we in the course of the day:


The fruit of the spirit and the character in all that we do daily, in our conversations, our work ethic, our interactions at home and with family. These  will go a long way in producing good fruit and honoring the Lord.


May we get busy with our exercises.




As Christians, one of our goals each day is to live out the new life that is within us and make a difference for the kingdom of God. Sometimes our days are such that we cannot envision or develop something exciting or particularly noteworthy.


We remember the words of Jesus:


That thine alms may be in secret: and thy Father which seeth in secret himself shall reward thee openly. ~ Matthew 6:4


The things we do need not be open, public, or something that makes a big noise. When we look to just do something for someone else - meet a need or lighten their load, we are sowing good seed into their lives, our life and into the kingdom of God.


So we do not have to look far in order to consider: Can I do something for you today?




We are bound to thank God always for you, brethren, as it is meet, because that your faith groweth exceedingly, and the charity of every one of you all toward each other aboundeth; ~ II Thessalonians 1:3


May this verse describe us - more and more each day. We especially note the words about faith. So often we might think our faith is not where it should be. This verse assures us that our faith can grow and grow exceedingly!


Dear Father show us what this can mean in each person who is seeking You. May Your words of life literally explode in us producing faith that grows exceedingly!


May we daily grow and not be stagnant that the second part of the verse especially come to pass - that our charity and blessing to others might abound!




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