Pastor Schreiber's Devotions

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"No Better Shelter"- Psalm 23

The image of Jesus as the Good Shepherd has comforted many people in times of danger, illness, or impending disaster. As such, I believe many Christians are given to revert to Psalm 23! There is no better place in which to take shelter from the storms of life than in the Almighty God’s arms and His powerful word of promise. 

We Christians are to consider God our shelter and protector during the storms of life! Saint Peter asked, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life?” The thief on the cross simply prayed that Jesus would remember him when He came into His kingdom. The shepherd David attested to God’s powerful presence in Psalm 23:4, when he said: “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.

God’s presence strengthened David when he face overwhelming odds. It fortified the disciples as they went throughout the world proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Even today, it gives Christians the ability to face persecution and possible martyrdom, surgery, illness, or disease with confidence, knowing that (as St. Paul wrote) that nothing “in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:39

 I pray that you will also experience this confidence – that of David and Peter and the thief, knowing that Jesus Christ suffered and died, was buried and rose again from the dead, and ascended into heaven to prepare heavenly habitations for all who trust in Him. Jesus stands at the ready to defend and protect His own from all attacks of Satan, the world, and even death. His promise to us is this: “And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” Mt. 28:20b (ESV)

"A Prayer for Our Nation"- Psalm 80:7-19

After the slaughter in Las Vegas, the hurricanes, and the threats of war the world over, I believe the prayer in Psalm 80:7-19 is not only appropriate for the people of the United States of America – we need it! We have  seen calamities and disasters that would make some people rage and others shudder -- but how about you and me? What will we do?

I fervently pray, and don’t simply hope that we will as a people PRAY! That is, it is my passionate hope that God will deliver our nation and her people from our enemies foreign and domestic, even as He has saved us from sin, death and the devil through His son Jesus Christ. I pray that God will deliver us from the perils of inclement weather and natural disaster. My prayer is that God will not only save us from evil, but that He will make us strong and confident in His power to save!

So I ask you to read these Psalm verses and keep them in your hearts and mind during these troubled times and always!

 

Psalm 80:7-19 (ESV)

Restore us, O God of hosts; let your face shine, that we may be saved!

You brought a vine out of Egypt; you drove out the nations and planted it.

You cleared the ground for it; it took deep root and filled the land.

10 The mountains were covered with its shade, the mighty cedars with its branches.

11 It sent out its branches to the sea and its shoots to the River.

12 Why then have you broken down its walls, so that all who pass along the way pluck its fruit?

13 The boar from the forest ravages it, and all that move in the field feed on it.

14 Turn again, O God of hosts! Look down from heaven, and see; have regard for this vine, 15 the stock that your right hand planted, and for the son whom you made strong for yourself.

16 They have burned it with fire; they have cut it down; may they perish at the rebuke of your face!

17 But let your hand be on the man of your right hand, the son of man whom you have made strong for yourself!

18 Then we shall not turn back from you; give us life, and we will call upon your name!

19 Restore us, O Lord God of hosts! Let your face shine, that we may be saved!

"A Fervent Prayer"- Psalm 25:1-10

In Psalm 25 there is a fervent prayer for God to reveal His mercy. Verses four through seven of Psalm 25 are an eloquent and heartfelt request for God to reveal what the Psalmist felt was the true nature of God – His mercy and grace. Verses eight through ten give clear statement of who God is and what He is like:  good, upright, and steadfast in love and faithfulness.

We, by God’s grace, have seen the fullest revelation of this grace in the person and work of His only-begotten Son Jesus Christ. From Jesus’ humble birth in the Bethlehem stable, His childhood flight into Egypt, His rearing in a humble carpenter’s home in Nazareth, throughout His years of ministry in ancient Israel and instruction of the disciples, and finally in Jesus’ betrayal by a “friend,” denial by another, and abandonment by still others, God’s grace was at work. Through all those times and events Jesus was suffering what should have been ours; and when Jesus hung on that Roman cross outside the city of Jerusalem, He suffered not only the physical pains of that horrid death – He experienced the rejection of His heavenly Father. Jesus willingly went through all this so that we sinners could be forgiven of our sins and live for all eternity with Him in heaven.

So it is that we join with the Psalmist and say,

To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul. O my God, in you I trust; let me not be put to shame; let not my enemies exult over me. Indeed, none who wait for you shall be put to shame…. Ps. 25:1-3a

This is God’s GOOD NEWS!

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