“And I have led you forty years in the wilderness. Your clothes have not worn out on you, and your sandals have not worn out on your feet.” Deuteronomy 29:5 (NKJV) I don’t know about you but I’ve worn the same shirt and pants two days in a row. And it’s ok especially if you’re not going to see the same people as the day before. Am I wrong? Am I the only one? I don’t think so. Now when you start wearing the same clothes more than two days in a row, there may be a problem. God performed a fashion miracle for the Hebrews coming out of bondage and wandering for 40 years in the wilderness. Their clothes didn’t fade like ours do and didn’t wear thin for wearing them too much. The women were not checking each other out because they wore on year 20 the same thing they wore every day on the first year of their wandering. Can you imagine? But what’s the point, right? How does this speak to us? It should speak to us about the detailed care and faithfulness of God. But here’s the point, in the Old Testament God put something on His people that would be preserved for all those years, but in the New Testament God put something in us to preserve us. 2 Corinthians 4:16 says, “Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man(flesh) is perishing, yet the inward man(spirit) is being renewed day by day.” You may be wearing out physically, but God’s spirit is due for a renewal. Ask God to let you experience the renewal today. You have been clothed with a never aging Spirit that lives in you. You renew everything else, be renewed in your spirit. Renew your strength. Renew your hope and joy. Renew your love and devotion to God. Renew your faith and vision. He lives in us to renew us!
During the years I worked for the Smith County Sheriff’s department, there were a few times I was dispatched to the scene of an accident for traffic control. One accident I remember vividly was a vehicle so mangled, the Fire Department had to use the jaws of life to get the people out for medical treatment. They were hopelessly trapped without the right tool. You don’t have to be in an accident to feel hopelessly trapped. Some people feel trapped in relationships or trapped in a dead-end job. You can get trapped in the middle of a conflict you had nothing to do with, and you can get trapped financially in a pile of debt that you had everything to do with. Trapped people don’t think right! Trapped people often panic and run or they come up with a plan of escape that only makes things worse. Another reaction to being trapped is to give up and just accept where you are and live in defeat. But please listen, if this is you, this is not God’s plan for your life. How many people do you think are out there who are trapped and think there is no way out? Before you answer, think about what happened to God’s people after they had been delivered from their bondage in Egypt. Pharaoh’s army pursued the Hebrews to the Red Sea. It says in Exodus 14:3 “For Pharaoh will say of the children of Israel, They [are] bewildered by the land, the wilderness has closed them in.”
Pharaoh believed the Hebrew slaves were trapped and the Hebrews believed they were trapped and about to die. With their wildest imagination the Hebrews never envisioned that that big body of water behind them splitting open would be their escape route, but it did! Just because you can’t see a way out where you are, doesn’t mean there’s not one. All the Hebrews had to do was, “Stand still, and see the salvation of the Lord.” You are not trapped. God has the jaws of life and can make a way when there is no way. Call on Him. Cry out to Him until He parts the waters where you are. Then give Him glory, praise and honor.
“Now David was greatly distressed, for the people spoke of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and his daughters. But David strengthened himself in the LORD his God.” 1 Samuel 30:6 (NKJV). When David and his men returned from battle to Ziklag they found their homes burned and families taken by the Amalakites. Those men with Dav believing he was to blame. But in the form of a true leader, David didn’t argue with those men and he didn’t give up, nor did he fall into self-pity, but he “strengthened himself in the LORD his God.” How amazing is that? Maybe you’ve been there when it feels like everyone around you has turned on you, and those who have encouraged you in the past just aren’t there for you now. Sometimes you can’t reach out because there’s nothing and no one to reach out to, but you can always reach in and reach up. If you feel all alone, this word is for you. If you feel weak, this word is for you. If you feel confused and not sure what to do, start strengthening yourself in the Lord. David couldn’t afford to give up and neither can we. David had wives that had been taken captive and the families of his men had been taken as well. Those men with David didn’t need to stone him, they needed to strengthen him. That is another the message here, the leader you feel like stoning right now, could be the very one you need to strengthen. But if you are the leader, please listen, those around you need you to strengthen yourself right now. Do it especially if you don’t feel like it! Put your feelings to the side and start talking to yourself. It may sound strange, but if you will start telling yourself what God has already said about you, then you will experience God’s strength rising up in you. Start right here, right now.
I am a child of the most High King.
I am more than a conqueror through Him who loves me.
Greater is He that is in me, than he who is in the world.
I am standing strong in the Lord and in the power of His might.
My weapons are mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds.
No weapon formed against me will prosper.
I have all I need in me to get the victory today.
My enemy comes against me with swords and spear, but I have come in the name of the LORD of hosts.
I am an overcomer because of the blood of the lamb and the word of my testimony.
No matter what, I have the victory through Jesus.
Now listen to this, the devil is trying to convince you that you are anything but those things. But listen, you need to strengthen yourself in the Lord because there is still something for you to do. Just like David had to go rescue his wives and those families, there’s still a battle in front of you, so win the battle where you are. God has called you and equipped you to win the battle with yourself so you can win the battle against the enemy.
Driving through a pasture after a fishing trip with my grandson I knew there was a soft soggy patch with high grass I had to drive through. I was pretty confident we could get through it because we had driven through it on our way to the pond. My half ton Chevy was light but with good tires and the right speed I felt pretty good. As I approached the soggy patch I gripped my stirring wheel, set up straight and picked up my speed, but that wasn’t enough. Halfway through the patch I could feel my speed slowing down even though my foot on the pedal was steady. Finally my truck stopped moving, but my wheels were still spinning. What happened to us in that pasture is what happens to so many people in life, the wheels are spinning, but you’re not going anywhere. I tried to rock it, reverse then drive, and a few other things, but I couldn’t get any traction. The truth is, you will never be able to get spiritual traction until you realize you are stuck. I hated to do it, but I called Mike who was there within a minutes. Mike hooked us up to his truck and pulled us out. We thanked him and went on our way. In your life there must be someone like Mike. He was close, he came with just a call and had exactly what we needed to get unstuck. The entire army of Israel was stuck in battle 40 days against the Philistines because Goliath was in the valley. Each morning that came out shouting as they lined up for battle, but no one moved. They were spinning their wheels in fear and they did that until the day a shepherd boy named David showed up. “Then David put his hand in his bag and took out a stone; and he slung [it] and struck the Philistine in his forehead, so that the stone sank into his forehead, and he fell on his face to the earth.” I Samuel 17:49 NKJV. If for some reason you are stuck and spinning your wheels in life know that help is available. Stop trying to rock your life back and forth you’ll only sink deeper. Call on Jesus! He will come and He will have what it takes to get you free again.
Thanks for joining me!
Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton