HIS PRINCESS EVERY DAY – FRIDAY, JULY 3, 2020

I Came to Serve YouEven when you don’t feel valued, let Me remind you, My Princess, that I–your King–came to serve you. I not only created you; I also sustain your life, comfort your spirit, and provide what you need. You are so valuable that I even paid the ultimate price at the cross to ransom you, My child. I am able to take any failure or mistake you’ve made and miraculously use it for My glory. I am patient, kind, and merciful–I am Love. So now that you know your sins are forgiven, I am asking you to turn from who you were and become who I called you to be. Let Me help you. I am your Lord who loves you no matter what.

Love,
Your King who came for you

“For even I, the Son of Man, came here not to be served but to serve others, and to give my life
as a ransom for many.” – Matthew 20:28

This devotional is written by Sheri Rose Shepherd. All content copyright Sheri Rose Shepherd 2015. Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide. Visit HisPrincess.com for devotionals, books, videos, and more from Sheri Rose Shepherd.

JOHN PIPER DEVOTIONAL – FRIDAY, JULY 3, 2020

Good News: God Is Happy

“ . . . the gospel of the glory of the blessed God” (1 Timothy 1:11)

This is a beautiful phrase in 1 Timothy, buried beneath the too-familiar surface of Bible buzzwords. But after you dig it up, it sounds like this: “The good news of the glory of the happy God.”

A great part of God’s glory is his happiness.

It was inconceivable to the apostle Paul that God could be denied infinite joy and still be all glorious. To be infinitely glorious was to be infinitely happy. He used the phrase, “the glory of the happy God,” because it is a glorious thing for God to be as happy as he is.

God’s glory consists much in the fact that he is happy beyond our wildest imagination. As the great eighteenth-century preacher, Jonathan Edwards, said, “Part of God’s fullness which he communicates is his happiness. This happiness consists in enjoying and rejoicing in himself; so does also the creature’s happiness.”

And this is the gospel: “The gospel of the glory of the happy God.” It is good news that God is gloriously happy. No one would want to spend eternity with an unhappy God.

If God is unhappy, then the goal of the gospel is not a happy goal, and that means it would be no gospel at all. But, in fact, Jesus invites us to spend eternity with a happy God when he says, “Enter into the joy of your master” (Matthew 25:23).

Jesus lived and died that his joy — God’s joy — might be in us and our joy might be full (John 15:1117:13). Therefore the gospel is “the gospel of the glory of the happy God.”

WOMEN’S DEVOTIONAL BIBLE – FRIDAY, JULY 3, 2020

Bullies

Nahum 1:1–15

Every schoolyard has them. They’re the nemesis of every 43-pound weakling and pig-tailed girl with lunch money. They are the menaces of the playground. It seems they never get caught—and there are very few who can or will stand up to them.

At this time in history, the biggest bullies on Israel’s block were the Assyrians. The Ninevites, who lived in the capital city of Assyria, were vicious and arrogant. Hearing their name made the Israelites cringe and whimper. One hundred years earlier, Jonah had tried to run away from them, and for good reason. Their war crimes were legendary.

And dear Nahum, whose name means, “comfort,” brings Israel some good news: The big bully is finally going to get his due. And who will avenge them? God himself. Jonah had demonstrated God’s compassion toward the bullies and had given them a chance to change. Now, a century after their short-lived revival, Nahum lets them have it.

Nahum draws a terrifying cosmic portrait of the God who can make short work of any bully, no matter how big and pushy. God is slow to anger; he is not impulsive. But when he has waited with infinite patience for the guilty to change, watch out! The most powerful forces of nature—the whirlwind, the storm, the earthquake and the flood—are but a shadow of God’s awesome power; they are his tools, as a hammer is the tool of a worker. The real force is the strength behind the hammer. And this worker, Israel’s God, has declared of the bullies, “They will be destroyed and pass away” (verse 12).

But Nahum’s portrait is a study in contrasts and mystery: God is also “good, a refuge in times of trouble. He cares for those who trust in him” (verse 7). God is both stern and kind, just and loving.

The world is full of bullies. Maybe they’ve never looked at Nahum’s portrait of God. The sight should strike as much terror in their hearts as looking up into the eye of a whirlwind. But as for you, keep Nahum’s portrait in mind the next time you face a bully. God sees injustice and, in his time, will avenge the helpless and the innocent. If Jonah’s story reminds us that their day may not be today, then Nahum assures us that their day will certainly come.

Reflection

  1. Do you have experience with being “bullied”? Describe what it feels like.
  2. Describe what it is like to finally have someone stick up for you.
  3. Who are the “big bullies” in your present circumstances? Ask God to deal with them and be your “refuge in times of trouble.”

Nahum 1:3
The LORD is slow to anger but great in power; the LORD will not leave the guilty unpunished. His way is in the whirlwind and the storm, and clouds are the dust of his feet.

Related Readings

Psalms 62:11–1277:14–20Jonah 1:1–3Nahum 3:1–3, 10.

CHARLES SPURGEON’S MORNING AND EVENING – FRIDAY, JULY 3, 2020

Morning

“The ill favoured and leanfleshed kine did eat up the seven wellfavoured and fat kine.”
Genesis 41:4

Pharaoh’s dream has too often been my waking experience. My days of sloth have ruinously destroyed all that I had achieved in times of zealous industry; my seasons of coldness have frozen all the genial glow of my periods of fervency and enthusiasm; and my fits of worldliness have thrown me back from my advances in the divine life. I had need to beware of lean prayers, lean praises, lean duties, and lean experiences, for these will eat up the fat of my comfort and peace. If I neglect prayer for never so short a time, I lose all the spirituality to which I had attained; if I draw no fresh supplies from heaven, the old corn in my granary is soon consumed by the famine which rages in my soul. When the caterpillars of indifference, the cankerworms of worldliness, and the palmerworms of self-indulgence, lay my heart completely desolate, and make my soul to languish, all my former fruitfulness and growth in grace avails me nothing whatever. How anxious should I be to have no lean-fleshed days, no ill-favoured hours! If every day I journeyed towards the goal of my desires I should soon reach it, but backsliding leaves me still far off from the prize of my high calling, and robs me of the advances which I had so laboriously made. The only way in which all my days can be as the “fat kine,” is to feed them in the right meadow, to spend them with the Lord, in His service, in His company, in His fear, and in His way. Why should not every year be richer than the past, in love, and usefulness, and joy?–I am nearer the celestial hills, I have had more experience of my Lord, and should be more like Him. O Lord, keep far from me the curse of leanness of soul; let me not have to cry, “My leanness, my leanness, woe unto me!” but may I be well-fed and nourished in thy house, that I may praise thy name.

Evening

“If we suffer, we shall also reign with him.”
2 Timothy 2:12

We must not imagine that we are suffering for Christ, and with Christ, if we are not in Christ. Beloved friend, are you trusting to Jesus only? If not, whatever you may have to mourn over on earth, you are not “suffering with Christ,” and have no hope of reigning with him in heaven. Neither are we to conclude that all a Christian’s sufferings are sufferings with Christ, for it is essential that he be called by God to suffer. If we are rash and imprudent, and run into positions for which neither providence nor grace has fitted us, we ought to question whether we are not rather sinning than communing with Jesus. If we let passion take the place of judgment, and self-will reign instead of Scriptural authority, we shall fight the Lord’s battles with the devil’s weapons, and if we cut our own fingers we must not be surprised. Again, in troubles which come upon us as the result of sin, we must not dream that we are suffering with Christ. When Miriam spoke evil of Moses, and the leprosy polluted her, she was not suffering for God. Moreover, suffering which God accepts must have God’s glory as its end. If I suffer that I may earn a name, or win applause, I shall get no other reward than that of the Pharisee. It is requisite also that love to Jesus, and love to his elect, be ever the mainspring of all our patience. We must manifest the Spirit of Christ in meekness, gentleness, and forgiveness. Let us search and see if we truly suffer with Jesus. And if we do thus suffer, what is our “light affliction” compared with reigning with him? Oh it is so blessed to be in the furnace with Christ, and such an honour to stand in the pillory with him, that if there were no future reward, we might count ourselves happy in present honour; but when the recompense is so eternal, so infinitely more than we had any right to expect, shall we not take up the cross with alacrity, and go on our way rejoicing?