Our Priorities

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As recorded in Genesis 25, Abraham lived to a good old age and was buried next to his wife Sarah in the field he had bought from the Hittites. God had been with Abraham and he lived a wonderful life because he had discipline, prayerfully sought God’s direction, and followed the path God laid out for him. Because of this, Abraham had a good relationship with God and was rewarded with a son named Isaac, many descendants, and land that would eventually become a great nation.

Abraham’s son Isaac married Rebekah and they had twin boys named Esau and Jacob. As the twins grew up, Esau enjoyed the outdoors; hunting and gathering food. Jacob on the other hand, enjoyed staying in; taking care of the chores around their home and cooking. Once, he made some stew which Esau couldn’t resist so Jacob offered some stew in exchange for his birthright.

We observe that Esau focused on the short term; trading his inheritance for a dish of stew. The lesson is for us to put our attention more on the long term and not give in to short term desires. We must be able to plan and make decisions based on those plans.

In the world in which we live today, the most difficult decisions are our priorities. There is so much that can be done and so much information we can obtain that it becomes overwhelming at times. It helps to know what our priorities are so we can determine what tasks are most important as we take on the challenges of each day. Our first priority as a Christian should be to spend time with God in prayer each day.

Think about it, our faith can never be taken away or depleted and the Word of God can never be outdated. Knowledge about God’s way never changes. It doesn’t become outdated like a computer system or some skill we may obtain that becomes obsolete in five years.

The challenge we face in a world that promotes negatives is to fill our thoughts with positives. Try this for the next few days: take a walk in your neighborhood. If you are unable to physically walk, take a walk each day in your mind.  If you have a dog, take your dog for a walk and as you walk, memorize scripture, think about your day; what good things did you experience and what bad things did you experience that provided a lesson for the future and a lesson to share with others.

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Questions for Reflection for Study of Genesis 25-28

In the continued study of Genesis and the character of Abraham, we have noticed the constant willingness he had to follow the direction God was leading. He was a disciplined person who consistently followed through and others began to see that God was with him in everything he did.

Even when told to sacrifice his son Isaac, Abraham followed through with God’s directions and put total trust in Him. Then, Abraham was rewarded for offering what he loved most, his son to God. What God really wants from us is that our strongest desire is to listen and follow His direction. Then, God gives us all that we need and will bless us beyond our wildest dreams.

Now we will spend a few weeks studying the descendants of Abraham including Isaac who married Rebekah. They had twin boys named Esau and Jacob and we will study about Esau talking his brother out of his birthright because he only looked at what he wanted in the short term. We will study the problems faced by Isaac and Rebekah in raising the twins.

Like his father, Isaac faced many challenges in life and didn’t always have the courage needed. But for the most part, he listened to God’s will and God blessed him with the promise of many descendants along with all that he needed for success. We too face our challenges of today and we can influence others to not repeat the missteps of the past.

This Holy week, we can offer others the faith needed to face the despair and doubt of current times. We can offer them the way that brings victory in a time of hate by helping them understand what Jesus has done for us on the cross. Jesus has given us a chance to make everything right with God; a turning point to an amazing future in His presence.

The mission of this blog is to bring out ways to apply His Word in our life at work, at home, and within our neighborhoods. The below questions for reflection for the upcoming study are laid out below to help bring out some thoughts and ideas over the next two weeks.

Genesis 25
Summarize what you have learned about Abraham, about his relationship with God, and about God’s covenant with him. Characterize Esau and Jacob. What about their characters and concerns does the incident in verses 29-34 reveal? What are the valued things and priorities in your life? Why?

Genesis 26
What does God promise Isaac? Why? What are some of Isaac’s problems? How do you (or will you) influence your children to help them not repeat your sins?

Genesis 27
What kind of person is Jacob? What kind of person is Esau? How binding is Isaac’s original blessing? How do you feel about breaking your word (especially when you have been tricked)?

Genesis 28
What does God promise Jacob? How has some of it been fulfilled? What is Jacob’s response to God’s presence?

The above reading plan will be used as I share over the next few posts. It’s important to have a plan. I’m thankful that Jesus is God’s plan for us and by accepting Him as Savior; we have taken the steps necessary to make this day with Him amazing! At this link: God’s Plan for Us, is a post about accepting God’s plan or reaffirming our “YES” for Christ.
 
Feel free to respond with a short note or a comment about any of the questions above. Also, I welcome any other thoughts or ideas, favorite inspirational videos, photos, or favorite Bible verses. Just add them to the comments or to a Facebook page I’ve set up at this link: This Day With God.
 
Resources and Supplementary Helps Used in Posts
Adeney, Carol. This Morning with God. Downer Grove Illinois: InterVarsity Press, 1978
First United Methodist Waco Podcast
Christ Notes
Family Times
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The Know How in the Here and Now

Mark Shields:

The rains finally stopped and the ark came to rest upon a mountain top. Noah did not have sophisticated tools that could tell him where he was or how deep the water was but he was able to improvise. He sent out a dove each day until it brought back a fresh olive leaf. He had waited patiently until the time was right and then came out of the ark. This poem was inspired by the amazing accomplishment of Noah. Like Noah, this day stick to God’s plan and bring Him glory. God thinks you are Awesome!

Originally posted on Step Ahead:

Mount Ararat – Resting Spot of Noah’s Ark

The rains finally stopped
The ark came to a halt
Upon the highest spot
On a mountain top

God gave Noah the know how
And in the here and now
He gives to all who make a request
A live full of joy and zest

So carry out your mission
You might be a musician
In sales earning a commission
Whatever … just have ambition

Use the skills God has given
Praise Him in how you are living
Use God’s unlimited supplies
Follow His plan to be very wise

You can do amazing things
Soar high like eagles with wings
Praying and listening for direction
Carrying out the plan with so much perfection

Praising Him for the resources provided
Giving your attention to Him undivided
Stepping ahead and being devout
Praising Him for the path laid out
 

By Mark Shields –…

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