Friday, May 7 Emergency Power They all were trying to make us afraid, saying, “Their hands will be weakened in the work, and it will not be done.” Now therefore, O God, strengthen my hands. Nehemiah 6:9All over the world, people are adding portable generators to the emergency items stashed away in their basements or closets because power interruptions can occur at any time.Recommended Reading:Psalm 27: 11 – 14In life, we often need extra strength. As Nehemiah led the effort to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem, his enemies taunted and threatened him. Local authorities tried to frighten the wall builders and make them afraid. But Nehemiah kept working, and as he worked, he uttered a prayer: “Now therefore, O God, strengthen my hands.”The relationship we have with God and our ability to pray to Him at any time or place is like an emergency generator that provides us with power in our inner being. We can stay strong in the Lord even when our physical strength is reduced. Even when our burdens increase. His strength isn’t diminished, and it’s always available for His children. From the Lord we have the strength needed to face each day.Lord and Saviour, true and kind, be the Master of my mind; bless, and guide, and strengthen still all my powers of thought and will. Handley Moule Read through the Bible:1 Chronicles 27 – 29

LONGING TO SEE YOU AGAIN

Picture for a moment those first moments of a family reunion. The entire extended family is reunited— aunts, uncles, cousins, nephews, nieces, and others. They may come from around the country or even fly in from overseas. They have not seen each other in person for a very long time, so the hugs are warm and the greetings joyful. At last, they’re together again!

In a similar sense, Paul had an “intense longing” to see the Thessalonians (v. 17). They were like family to him. He’d already spoken of himself as both mother and father to the young church (vv. 7–8, 11–12). Now he referred to their separation with the word “orphaned,” which in Greek can mean not only children who’ve lost their parents but also parents who’ve lost their children.

Paul felt this way because the Thessalonians represented “our hope, our joy, or the crown in which we will glory in the presence of our Lord Jesus when he comes. . . . Indeed, you are our glory and joy” (vv. 19–20). In other words, when Christ returns and asks Paul, “How did you spend your life?”—he would point straight to the Thessalonians. They would be his “crown,” a reference to a prize in athletic games such as the ancient Olympics (Phil. 3:14). They would serve as evidence that Paul had lived faithfully for the glory of God.

Paul had gone on to Berea and then to Athens, stopping eventually in Corinth (1 Thess. 3:1). Since he couldn’t come himself, he sent Timothy to Thessalonica (3:2–5). His encouraging message: Don’t be “unsettled” or discouraged by persecution. In fact, he’d told them to expect trials as a normal lot of the Christian in a hostile world. They should stand firm and not give in to temptations to abandon the hard road of faith.

>> Among other consequences, the COVID-19 pandemic presented significant barriers to being together. This difficult situation reminds us to give even more thanks for God’s faithful fellowship (Deut. 31:8)!PRAY WITH US

In periods of isolation we draw closer to you, Father. We recognize that we need your fellowship more than anyone’s. Help us to live in awareness of your presence in our lives.This month’s devotional is written by Brad Baurain. Dr. Brad Baurain has worked as a writer and editor for Today in the Word since 1993. Currently, he serves as associate professor and TESOL program head at Moody Bible Institute. Brad has the unique privilege of holding a degree from four different universities (including Moody). He has also taught in China, Vietnam, the United States, and Canada. Brad and his wife, Julia, have four children and reside in Munster, Indiana.

Author: Delana Zakrzewski

I am saved by the most High God for others sins against me any sins against the Lord God Almighty, Whose Son Jesus, washed us all of our sin by His presuses blood and beat death, by walking out of the Tomb

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