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Bob Young

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Thanks for visiting our website! Picture of the Month: sharing the word in Pilanqui, Ibarra, Ecuador; a view of part of the crowd, two baptisms. [Click picture to enlarge.]

Preaching in Pilanqui

Ministry is always a team effort--Jan and I have shared the work of ministry and missions for 48+ years! Countless others have encouraged us, supported us, loved us, and prayed for us. In addition to the customary "Brother Bob," I am also known as dad and papaw. My favorite breakfast is huevos fritos, frijoles, and tortillas, with a good hot sauce and a cup of quality coffee! My greatest joy in life is being part of the kingdom; my #1 priority is to advance "kingdom things" and help develop authentic "kingdom people." I seek to serve and share the good news about Jesus everywhere I go, helping people find Jesus and helping people mature in Jesus. One of the greatest blessings of my life is to be loved by countless people around the world!

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Archive for the ‘Devotional’ Category

Progress on the “Psalms Project”

Monday, August 26th, 2013

Yesterday I was able to post another set of devotionals in the “Psalms Project.” For those who may not be tracking this project, I am writing a “Short Guide to Reading the Psalms Devotionally.” For each psalm, the project includes a brief comment, a reading guide that provides insights and outlining ideas, and a prayer based on the psalm.
Book IV (Psalms 90-106) is now available: Psalms Project: Book IV.
You may access all of the psalms currently available at the Psalms Project: Index.

A Good Time to Begin

Saturday, March 30th, 2013

Three months of the new year have passed. Most thoughts of New Year’s resolutions are ancient history. A common element in the resolutions of many Christians is the desire to spend more time in the Word of God.
This is a good time to begin–the daily devotional readings which are available on the website are beginning the Gospel of John. You can access the readings through the link in the right menu box: Daily Devotionals: April.

Meeting God in the morning

Monday, March 25th, 2013

Mornings have been special to me for the last 20 years. When we emptied our nest, we quit setting an alarm clock. Now the natural rhythms of life put us to bed and awaken us, and God thoughts are almost always a part of that rhythm. Of course, there are exceptional situations during special events or travels, but even so, we have become early risers by nature. The quietness of the morning is ideal for meditation and preparation for the day. I find comfort in simply being in God’s presence, aware that he has kept watch through the night, aware that those who live in my little section of the world will soon awaken and begin the day. I enjoy his presence, his counsel, his care, his amazing forgiveness.

A phrase that frequently comes to mind in my God thoughts is, “Thank you, God, for being my God.” We human beings choose our own God (or god). By nature, all creation sings the glory of the Creator God. God has given me the challenge of choosing my God (god). He has made possible the establishment of a special relationship of communion and fellowship with him. I want to live each day in God awareness, comforted and surrounded by his presence and strength, seeking his will and guidance.

A Short Guide to Reading the Psalms Devotionally

Tuesday, January 15th, 2013

At the start of 2013, for several days I published entries from my current writing project: A Short Guide to Reading the Psalms Devotionally. My goal is to write at least one devotional guide each day–and to stay ahead of those who began the new year reading a psalm each day. [It is always a good time to begin a Bible reading plan.] The guide provides background, context, outline or organization, and reading or devotional hints, along with a prayer for each psalm.

I do not have plans to include these entries in future blogs, but they are available on the website. Check out the link in the right column, or you may check them out and bookmark: A Short Guide to Reading the Psalms Devotionally.

It’s Sunday Again: Strengthening the Spirit

Sunday, January 6th, 2013

Today I am thinking about Paul’s prayer for the Ephesians: “I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being” (Eph. 3:16).
One of my goals for 2013 is to grow spiritually, to become stronger in the Spirit. One way I am doing that is by working through the Psalms–reading, studying, analyzing, thinking about applications, and writing a prayer that corresponds to each psalm. During the first few days of the new year, I have posted those studies as blogs, but I want to return to other blogging topics. A link to the devotionals based on the Psalms will be available near the bottom of the Devotional Index Page.

Today, the first Sunday of the New Year provides a good opportunity to think about how we might find greater spiritual strength. Paul writes that God strengthens us inwardly through his Spirit. How do we find and accept that strengthening? Surely it is not automatic! How do we cooperate with God in the effort? Each must find his or her own answer, but for me it involves being more in tune with and aware of God’s presence in my life. This involves listening to God, praying, daily communing with him. I want to meditate on his word, contemplate his glory and majesty, become like him as I focus on him.
Time spent with God’s people is a part of that process. Thank you, Lord, for the opportunity to lift hearts together in worship today. May the glory be yours now and forever in the church, and may we know the power that gloriously energizes and works within us!

Psalm 4

Saturday, January 5th, 2013

This psalm continues a series of short psalms that call upon God to deliver, expressing confidence in God’s willingness to act.

Reading: Psalm 4:1-8
If the psalmist’s plaintiff cry seems too directional in demanding that God act, the first verse can be understood as a request. “May God answer, may God give me relief, may God be merciful and hear my prayer.” God honors godly people and sets them apart for his own possession. Therefore, the psalmist is confident that God will act. Such confidence comes from heart-searching and silence before God, commitment and sacrifice and trust. Such joyful confidence surpasses the joy of the greatest blessings of this earth.
Therefore, the psalmist affirms that he can sleep at night despite the difficulties of life. “I will lie down and sleep in peace, for you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.”

Prayer
Heavenly Father, we want to know that you hear and that you respond to our cries. We want to know your mercy and love. Give the ability to see deep within ourselves and silently wait before you. Thank you for your protection. We rejoice in you. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Psalm 3

Friday, January 4th, 2013

The next twelve psalms (3-14) generally belong to the category of psalms of deliverance and praise. The NIV Study Bible notes suggest a 5+1+5+1 pattern. Psalms 3-7 are followed by Psalm 8, a creation psalm which declares the glory of God. Psalm 8 is also recognized as a Messianic psalm with a clear reference to Christ as the one through whom God’s glory ultimately comes to human beings. Five more psalms or prayers of deliverance and praise (9-13) are followed by Psalm 14, a description of the folly of humanity when God’s glory is refused.

Reading: Psalm 3:1-8
It is no small thing to pray with confidence. In this psalm, David finds assurance in God in the face of enemies. The psalm likely refers to David’s flight during the rebellion of Absalom. God is a shield who gives his people glory. (Note how this foreshadows Psalm 8 which caps the subsection.) God answers the cries of his children. The Psalmist rests in peace in his dependence on God. God delivers because God desires to bless his creation.
May we today pray with confidence about whatever difficulties and challenges we confront. God is on his throne, orchestrating the affairs of this world, listening to our prayers, protecting his children, guiding and directing into his glory. Deliverance comes from God, in God’s ways and in God’s time.

Prayer
Dear God, this day I want to know the confidence reflected in this psalm. Teach me to depend on you, to accept your glory as you bring it into my life, and to await your deliverance from the difficulties I experience. I declare that you are my God, in all of your splendor and majesty. Show me the way and help me walk in it faithfully, in Jesus’ name, Amen.

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