Jeremiah 31:13

I will turn their mourning into joy. Jeremiah 31:13

The book of Jeremiah urges GodÂ’s people to turn from their sins and look to God. Jeremiah was appointed by God to be a prophet to Judah where he confronted the leaders and people with their sins; he prophesied their captivity in Babylon and their return from exile. On his journey as a prophet Jeremiah suffered greatly and was more than once inclined to resign from GodÂ’s task (Jeremiah 15:10,17-18; 20:7-9). Despite this and despite being forcefully taken to Egypt he remained faithful and years of obedience made him strong and courageous.

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Jeremiah 20:9

Jeremiah said, “If I say, ‘I will not mention him, or speak any more in his name,’ then within me there is something like a burning fire.” Jeremiah 20:9

Jeremiah has reasons not to mention the name of the Lord anymore and to give back to the Lord his ministry as a prophet. He was struck and put in the stocks (Jeremiah 20:1ff). He was in derision; everyone mocked him (Jeremiah 20:7). His fellowmen devised plans against him (Jeremiah 18:18); they sought to kill him; they had dug a pit for his life (Jeremiah 11:18-21 and 18:20). All this he suffered, and he had not asked to become a prophet – the opposite! (Jeremiah 1:6).

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Isaiah 6:5

Isaiah said, “Woe is me! I am lost, for I am a man of unclean lips, and live among a people of unclean lips.” Isaiah 6:5

After seeing the Lord and listening to the praise of the angels, Isaiah realized that he was sinful before God, with no hope of measuring up to God's standard of holiness. Isaiah's lips were touched with a live burning coal; his sins were forgiven. It was not the coal that cleansed him, but God. In response, Isaiah submitted himself entirely to God's service. The painful cleansing process was necessary before Isaiah could fulfill the task to which God was calling him.

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Isaiah 45:23-24

Before me every knee will bow; by me every tongue will swear. They will say of me, “In the Lord alone are righteousness and strength.” Isaiah 45:23-24 (NIV)

We stand today at the beginning of a new year, having experienced God’s direction and his blessing in the past year. Even against the background of the challenges which we may have experienced we can say that we have been ‘brought safely thither by his hand’. Isaiah has therefore spoken for all of us – “In the Lord alone are righteousness and strength”. His strength brought us through.

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My eyes fail with watching for your promise; I ask, “When will you comfort me?” Psalm119:82

In life, it seems as if there is always some sort of struggle or challenge; as if what we need or want is just out of reach. It doesn’t matter what it is – a new car, a job, a raise – it always feels like God is taking too long to send it. We forget that in his word God has promised to provide for us (Matthew 6:26) and we become impatient, forgetting to thank God for what he has provided. Instead we question when our present ‘suffering’ will end. We forget that it is through our experiences that we gain strength and we forget the very basic lessons we try to instill in our children. If we receive everything that we ask for when we ask for it, we will become spoilt, ungrateful and selfish.

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Proverbs 3:27

Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in your power to do it. Proverbs 3:27

Harriet was about to go to bed. She had worked hard all day cleaning the back yard and mowing the lawn – getting ready for her Christmas guests. She was weary and her back ached from the bending and lifting. She longed for a good (and hopefully long) night’s rest, especially considering that she had to set out early on a long journey the next morning. The door bell rang and reluctantly she went to the door. Her neighbor stood there looking distraught and said she needed a ride to the hospital with her asthmatic daughter. Continue reading "Proverbs 3:27"

Isaiah 64:9

Do not be exceedingly angry, O Lord, and do not remember iniquity for ever. Now consider we are all your people. Isaiah 64:9

‘Forgive and forget’. A common phrase used to soothe angered spirits in order to make amends. For most, this is easier said than done.

To release our feelings of anger — to no longer remember the reason behind our anger — is not a simple task for most. We may, at some point, forgive; however, it is not automatic to simply forget. The reasons behind our anger remain etched in our memories. Depending on the intensity of the anger, some memories remain with us for a lifetime.

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Exodus 14:13

Do not be afraid, stand firm, and see the deliverance that the Lord will accomplish for you today. Exodus 14:13

Exodus Chapter 14 verse 13 reads "And Moses said unto the people, Fear ye not, stand still and see the salvation of Jehovah, which he will work for you today, for the Egyptians whom ye have seen today ye shall see again no more for ever."(American Standard version).

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Isaiah 33:24

No resident will say, “I am sick”; the people who dwell there will be forgiven their iniquity. Isaiah 33:24

Christmas Day.
Today we say Merry Christmas! Or Happy Christmas!
Today is a day of celebration: good food, family and friends, cards and gifts.
We celebrate the birth of the Saviour.
Today the things of the world come for a moment to a pause.
Today is a day of love and peace and joy.
Today we hear good tidings of great joy:

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