From Handbook to Renewal
Focus: The Powers of God
He who is the Glory of Israel does not lie or change His mind, for He is not a man, that He should change His mind. (1 Samuel 15:29)
The Lord does not see as man sees. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart. (1 Samuel 16:7)
Will God indeed dwell on earth? Heaven and the highest heaven cannot contain You. (1 Kings 8:27)
Long ago You ordained Your plan, and now You are bringing it to pass. (2 Kings 19:25; Isaiah 37:26)
The Lord is great and greatly to be praised; He is to be feared above all gods. For all the gods of the nations are idols, but the Lord made the heavens. Splendor and majesty are before Him; strength and joy are in His place. I will ascribe to the Lord glory and strength. I will ascribe to the Lord the glory due His name and worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness. (1 Chronicles 16:25–29)
From Handbook to Prayer
No one can lay a foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ. (1 Corinthians 3:11)
It is by faith that I stand firm. (2 Corinthians 1:24)
Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but through faith in Christ Jesus, I have believed in Christ Jesus, that I may be justified through faith in Christ and not by the works of the law; for by the works of the law, no flesh will be justified. (Galatians 2:16)
Pause to reflect upon these biblical affirmations.
Many, O Lord my God, are the wonders You have done,
And Your thoughts toward us no one can recount to You;
Were I to speak and tell of them,
They would be too many to declare. (Psalm 40:5)
I will praise You forever for what You have done;
I will hope in Your name, for it is good.
I will praise You in the presence of Your saints. (Psalm 52:9)
Pause to offer your own expressions of thanksgiving.
I know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who have been called according to His purpose. (Romans 8:28)
If God is for me, who can be against me? He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how will He not, also with Him, freely give us all things? (Romans 8:31–32)
From Handbook to God’s Promises
GOD’S PROVISION FOR A HEAVENLY FATHER
Orphans No More
Read Zephaniah 3:20
A dark pall fell on the proud history of England in the days following World War II. German bombing had decimated London, and, as a result of deaths and th–e strains of war, many English families had abandoned their small children to orphanages. History has not revealed the clear reasons for this action, but the population transported literally hundreds and hundreds of war orphans (many with parents still living in England) to Australia, apparently to help populate that burgeoning part of the empire. Nearly a half-century later, the grown children discovered the truth—they were British, not Australian, and many had parents alive in England whom they had never seen.
The prophet Zephaniah prophesied to the inhabitants of Judah about a time to come when they too would feel like orphans; a time after the coming day of the Lord. Because of their sin, God was going to bring destruction on the cities of Judah. The prophet called for the people to “Seek the LORD … Seek righteousness, seek humility” (Zephaniah 2:3), while prophesying about the coming exile. But the people’s disobedience would soon separate them from the God they had neglected.
In a similar way, we are orphans as well. Because our first parents, Adam and Eve, ran away from their heavenly Father, we who are their descendants come into this world with a deep sense of spiritual estrangement. Thankfully, God reached out to restore His relationship. Zephaniah promised the people of Judah that He would bring them home (3:20). And Paul says that God has restored us as children and heirs (Romans 8:14–16).
When we come to know Christ, God’s Spirit tells our human spirit that we are home—we have found “Abba,” our true spiritual Daddy. His lap is large and luxurious, and He beckons us to come near. We receive His love now and will continue to do so in the future as His heirs, destined to share His eternal glory.
If you sometimes sense that you “aren’t home,” it may be that you’ve never met your true Father. Or perhaps you do know Him, but still don’t know Him like you need to. If so, pray that the Holy Spirit will show you your true spiritual Father. Then get ready to unpack your bags and stay forever.
God’s Promise: When you find God, you find a Father who will never leave you.