Below are new excerpts from the nonfiction devotional, Selah: Daily Quotes for Daily Meditation, co-written with my best friend. The Hebrew word, selah, means "to pause and think about".
The book is meant to give readers a nugget-- a thought that compels them to think deeper about a biblical concept.
I often pick a copy off of my shelf and browse through the months until something catches my eye. My usual reaction is: "I needed to read this today".
I'm casually working on a new edition that will make Selah more of a standard devotional than a book of brief original, yet Biblically-inspired quotable phrases. The new version will hopefully include many of the pins that are found in that tab on this site.
Here are a few excerpts from the month of January.
The goodness of God is defined as kind, cordial, benevolent, tenderhearted, and full of good towards mankind. All in all, His unfailing attitude towards all mortal beings is open, friendly, and inclined to give blessings. He takes holy pleasure in the happiness of His children.
For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.
How do we reconcile God’s benevolence towards mankind with the calamity, disease, and war so rampant in our time? If God has thoughts of peace towards us, then why do we face times of personal chaos?
Scriptures like Ephesians 6:12, 1 John 3:8, and Romans 8: 1-6 present answers to these questions. The reality of evil, propagated by the devil and his demons, and the condition of sin in mankind are not ignored by God, rather He offers victory to those who believe in the crucifixion and resurrection of His only begotten Son, Jesus Christ. His orientation towards mankind is compassionate, for only a loving God would care enough to take on the flesh of man in order to offer man a way out of earthly darkness and eternal punishment. Certainly, the negatives we face are the consequences of living in a fallen world, where some people are still trapped and destroyed by their spiritual blindness. Blessed are those whose eyes are opened.
We yearn to trust implicitly. We crave the security in knowing that someone loves us enough never to hurt us. That someone is God. (Psalm 143:10)
Romance novels have a huge audience. Our God given yearning for the security of a safe and intimate relationship finds satisfaction within the seductive covers of this genre. Despite the momentary relief that fictional fantasy offers, real life winks at us when the book is finished.
Allusion suppresses the real pain and loneliness that so many people carry. Those that find God and learn how to lean on His invisible bosom find the comfort, safety, and security that no human being or book can truly offer.
Matthew 27:12 says “And while He was being accused by the chief priests and elders, He answered nothing.” Why did Jesus stay silent? Why didn’t he defend himself?
How does a man who has healed, delivered, brought happiness and provided food for multitudes defend himself when his deeds are already known by the accusers and are the very thing they find offensive?
He doesn’t. The blind can’t see or understand anyway. The Bible calls them darkened in their understanding. (Ephesians 4:18)
As far as the redeemed, no matter how often the serpent from the Garden of Eden lies to us about our heavenly Father, we must belief only what He says about himself in Scripture. Our daily experiences, some frustrating and some sorrowful, cannot define God. We must allow our good God to define them.