Psalm 82:3-4 NLT – “Give justice to the poor and the orphan; uphold the rights of the oppressed and the destitute.  Rescue the poor and helpless; deliver them from the grasp of evil people.
Some Bible verses need a commentary to help understand them. Verses like the ones above don’t. We can read them and understand what we need to do.
These verses tell us to look after vulnerable people. People who are struggling to look after themselves. People who are oppressed by others. People who are poor and helpless.
I believe caring for vulnerable people is very close to God’s heart. Time and time again in the Bible He encourages us to look after the weak, the widow, the orphan, the oppressed.
As I type I am challenged afresh by these verses. What have I done? What am I doing? What can I do next? These thoughts are words rolling around in my spirit.
Can I sponsor another child? Can I volunteer at a shelter? Can I do some training that well help me be more effective in helping? Do I know someone who needs help?
How about you?
Lord God, I want to make a real and lasting difference in this world. I want to help the poor and helpless, I want to help the widow and the orphan, I want to help the oppressed. Please show me what I can do to help. Show me what You want me to do. I ask in Jesus’ name, Amen.
“Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me.” John 14:1 NLT
Don’t let our hearts be troubled implies that at times they will be. The remedy to this is trusting in God. God is all powerful. He knows the beginning from the end. He promises to care for us, protect us and provide for us. Philippians 4:13 tells us that we can do all things through Christ who is our strength. So we don’t have to be troubled!
Thank You God that you are with me. You provide help, strength, protection and all I need in this life. Help me to trust You and not be troubled in my heart. Amen.
Possible spoilers in this post: Depending on how you read the following it could be seen as spoilers if you want to see the film. As it was released in 2003 I figure you may have seen it already.
One of my favourite movies is Bruce Almighty. It is a fun movie that I have watched a number of times. It is a movie about Bruce’s life with some interactions with God along the way.
Without giving too much away to those who have not seen it, Bruce is a TV Reporter who does wacky stories for his local TV station. His desire though is to be a serious news anchor but he feels stunted in his career opportunities.
As I watched the movie I found some truths we can draw from that can help us in our everyday life. Here are some observations I made.
1. Bruce was ambitious for the wrong things
Bruce desperately wanted to be a serious news anchor and he felt he was held back by doing wacky news. In one interaction with God he finds out that that is how God made him. God loved Bruce’s sense of humour and said he brings joy to people. Bruce needed to recognise his calling and work within that area. A lesson for us.
2. Bruce wasn’t content with his life
We see that Bruce was so desperate to be a news anchor that he didn’t realise what he had. A great job, a lovely partner, a nice home. His ambition for bigger things blinded him from being content with his life and seeing what he already had. The Apostle Paul tells us he learned to be content in all situations (Philippians 4:11).
3. Bruce thought God hated him
A number of times during the movie we see Bruce shake his fist at God and yell at the sky. He thought God hated him and likened God to a bully with magnifying glass on an ant hill. Bruce didn’t understand his wrong ambition was the source of his frustration, not God hating him. We see that God cared enough to intervene in his life. Just like He intervenes in ours.
4. Bruce realised being God is hard
In the movie Bruce is given God’s powers for a time. He even has to answer prayers to which he finds very hard and time consuming. In the end he says yes to everyone’s prayers and it causes chaos in the world. Being God and getting the balance right is not easy. There is a lot more going on that Bruce realised. I am glad God did not answer all of my prayers with yes over the years!
5. Bruce found that surrender was the key
In one scene we see Bruce realise the error of his thinking and he surrenders his will fully to God. God then turns things around. I won’t say too much but this is a key for all of us. We might think we know what is best, but there is always more going on behind the scenes that we know. The key for Bruce and us is to surrender to a loving God who knows all and has a plan for our lives.
So there you have it. Five lessons from the movie Bruce Almighty. As I said it is one of my favourite movies. I think I have watched it about 10 times at least over the years!
There are so many wonderful truths contained in the Bible. So many passages that tell us who we are in Christ and just how much we mean to Him.
One of my favourites is Psalms 139:1-4 NLT…
“O Lord, you have examined my heart and know everything about me. You know when I sit down or stand up. You know my thoughts even when I’m far away. You see me when I travel and when I rest at home. You know everything I do. You know what I am going to say even before I say it, Lord.”
This passage talks about God knowing our hearts. It says He knows everything about us. He even knows what we are going to say before we say it!
A wonderful truth is that knows and inside out and even more special, is that He loves us inside out. Did you hear that? God loves you.
Regardless of our view of ourselves at times and how we think we let God down daily. He knows us and He loves us. He loves us.
Today I want you to let this thought sink in. God knows you and He loves you. Just as you are today. Rest in it. Let it permeate every fibre of your being.
“The Lord directs our steps, so why try to understand everything along the way?” Proverbs 20:24 NLT
We may make our plans by what we think we want to do, but it is the Lord who directs our steps. With this in mind, we don’t need to understand everything in complete detail along the way.
One of the great truths of the Bible is that God holds us in the palm of His hands. When we walk with Him, His guidance, protection and help are all par for the course. It is part of being His child.
So we don’t need to worry about the future. What we will do, what we will eat, where will we go, these are all in God’s hands. We just need to focus on His Kingdom and be obedient each and every day. God will take care of the rest.
Dear God, I thank You that You hold me in the palm of Your hand. Help me to put my complete trust in You and seek Your Kingdom each day. Help me to understand that daily guidance, protection and supply are mine, because I am Your child. Amen.