OK, here's the plan (if God is willing):

1) Every day will be a new devotional. I have enough devotionals for every day for three years

2) Also as I can, I'll be posting on my new political blog (see bottom of page).

Some other housecleaning:

A) If you'd like to just get new postings sent to your email, just submit your address in the box on the left just below. There's just one possible downside, though. Occasionally I'll add a music video at the end that's relevant to the devotional, and you won't get them in the email sent to you. If I add a video though, I'll make sure to mention in the posting, so you'll know to come to the site to see it if you'd like.

B) I actually finished writing new blog posting for the TAWG at the end of 2016. So what I'm doing now is at the beginning of every month, I'll move the earliest month from 3 years ago ahead so that a "new" posting appears every day. That's why you won't find any postings for January 2014, for example.

C) When I started this Blog, I was using the 1984 edition of the NIV, and that’s what I linked to on the Biblegateway site. However, in 2011 Zondervan updated its edition and thus reworded a lot of the NIV translation. Therefore, all the links which went to the 1984 edition now redirect to the 2011 edition, which often has slightly different wording. Thus, part of my editing process has been to update my Scripture quotes in my postings. But I might have missed some, in which case you might see my quote in the posting as a little different from what comes up when you click on my citation link, since that redirects to the 2011 edition on the Biblegateway site. It's a good thing that we realize that the work of translation never ends, but it can be a kind of a pain on a site like this. If you see any difference in verbiage between my quote and what shows up as a link on the Biblegateway site, or if you hover over a link and it has "NIV1984" at the end of it, please notify me and I'll correct it.

D) I can't believe I have to say this, but here goes. At the end of every posting is a suggested short prayer that has to do with what we discussed. This is actually what I've prayed when I finished writing it. In no way am I asking you to pray the exact verbiage of my suggested prayer. It's just a springboard for your own prayer, nothing more. Quite frankly, I've never been a fan of praying rote prayers written by someone else. As with everything else I do here, to the degree it helps, great; to the degree it doesn't, chunk it.

As always, thank you so much for reading, even if it's to read one post. God bless.

[Feb 07]--Selective Amnesia

Psalm 78:1-22, 34-38

I worked as a sales representative for a pest control company for a little over a year, and it was—without a doubt—the most stressful job I’ve ever had. The hours weren’t that bad, the pay was really good, and I got along great with most of my co-workers. The problem, probably endemic to just about every sales job out there, was summed up in a common question asked by my boss on a regular basis: “What have you done for me lately?” He didn’t care if I had made a lot of sales last year, last month, or even last week. If I wasn’t making the numbers required, then my job was on the line. More so than in any other profession, my job was continually in jeopardy.

The reason I bring this up is because I think of that question whenever I think about the history of Israel. Psalm 78 has 72 verses, so we won’t read them all here. The rest of the Psalm basically goes through a list of how God had blessed Israel over and over and over, starting in the land of Egypt and continuing through to the present day. He'd chosen them out of all the peoples of the earth, not because they deserved it, but because of his sovereign choice and because of his promises to Abraham. He'd performed incredible miracles, signs, and judgments in Egypt, and delivered them out of death and slavery. Let’s make just a partial list of what he did—just during the time of Moses, shall we? The ten plagues of Egypt (sparing the Hebrews), the parting of the Red Sea, a cloud to shade them by day, a fire to give them light at night, bread out of heaven, water from a rock, protection from their enemies, victory in combat, the giving of the Law, etc.

And what had been their response to all this? Gratitude? Obedience? No—selective amnesia. Asking him continually “So what have you done for me lately?” Repeated rebellion. Continuous complaints. Attributing to God the basest of motives (“He’s brought us out here to kill us all!”).

And how did he treat them? With patience. Kindness. Mother-like gentleness. Mercy. Grace. When God revealed himself to Moses, he called himself “The Lord, the Lord, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness.” Time after time after time, he demonstrated this.

Why do I bring this all up? Well, why do you think I brought it up? Because Israel’s history is ours. How often has my Father blessed me and I take his goodness for granted? How often has he forgiven me for outright rebellion?

Please don’t misunderstand me. The point here is not to lay a guilt trip on you or me, at least that’s not the goal. The goal is to inspire some gratitude, and maybe a stronger commitment to following him more closely and listening to his instructions more intently. And maybe to stop asking that stupid question.

Lord Jesus, you are so good to me. You have blessed me so much in so many areas of my life. Please help me to trust, and to obey.

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