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Times of Persecution

Reading: Exodus 4-8


The time had come for Moses to confront Pharoah. God told him to march right in and demand that he let God’s people go, even though Pharoah would harden his heart and not listen to him. Moses followed God’s command and Pharoah persecuted God’s people even more! What a hard time for God’s children. Does that feel like our world at times? We try to do something for the Lord and the world stops us in our tracks and persecutes us even more. 

Child of God, just for today, don’t lose faith, because “weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning” (Psalm 30:5).

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Never Count your Chickens before they Hatch

1 Kings 1:9-10


This feast he is planning should have celebrated rather than initiated his campaign for the throne. Rather than having this feast as a kick-off party, Adonijah should have been having this feast once the throne was secured. We will see later in the chapter that Adonijah is quickly thwarted in his attempt to be King. This teaches us today to:


  • Consider the end-result of our actions before we act. (Luke 14:28 For which of you, intending to build a tower, sitteth not down first, and counteth the cost, whether he have sufficient to finish it?)
  • Finish a task before having the victory party.


“They who feast when they should fight are likely to end their mirth with sorrow.” -Maclaren.

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No Excuses

Reading: Exodus 1-4


Have you ever thought of yourself as ‘not good enough’ to serve God? Maybe there are things in your past that bring you shame. It could be that there is a habit that you can’t break or a sin that ‘doth so easily beset’ you. Or maybe there is something about your personality or your abilities that make you feel inadequate to serve God. You are not alone if you are trying to make excuses when God asks you to do something. There is a man in our passage today that gave God excuse after excuse. “Who am I? What shall I say unto them? But they will not believe me; I am not eloquent; I am slow of speech, and of a slow tongue…..” would you believe that the man who offered all of these excuses was Moses? THE Moses? If you know anything about the Old Testament, you will quickly realize that God was not interested in Moses’ excuses, and He isn’t interested in ours, either. If God called you to do something, then YOU are the person for the job!  

Just for today, don’t offer God your excuses. Give Him your obedience, and see what He can do through you!

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Self-Promotion shouldn’t be mistaken as God’s Will

1 Kings 1:9-10


In verse 5 we clearly see that Adonijah exalts himself. In verse 9 we see Him preparing a religious feast. Evidently his plan was to have a religious ceremony with everyone there in hopes they would go along.


What would you do? See yourself as just a casual attendee. I would probably think: “Well, he wouldn’t go to all this extravagance if David didn’t want it…” or “David wouldn’t allow this if it wasn’t God’s will/plan.” His Self-Promotion can/was easily mistaken as God’s plan.


When facing such a time we should always check the source. Always ask where is this coming from? Usually once you figure out the source, it becomes evident whether you are dealing with God’s plan or self promotion.


Next, look for the motive. Who really benefits from this? For example, the credit card company offers a FREE GIFT if you use their card! Doesn’t a free gift sound nice? Or, the cell phone company offers a Free Phone. The motive is obvious…they would like for you to become a regular payer. When wondering, “Is this self promotion?” Look for the motive.


Finally, one other generally good measure to take: Follow the Spiritual Leader. Where was Prophet Nathan? He was not invited. If the spiritual leaders aren’t invited, something may be up. Families should trust the head of the home. Fathers should find a spiritual anchor to judge things.

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Focus on What you Have Rather than What you Don’t

1 Kings 1:8


Focus on What you Have Rather than What you Don’t


It would be easy to be David and be discouraged that Joab left your side. However, he still has a good following. So it is in life. Sometimes things don’t go our way. Try not to focus on what doesn’t go your way. Focus on what is going your way. Sometimes people hurt us. Rather than focus on the hurt, focus on those who love us. Many times we can’t have the things we want. Focus on the things we have instead. They will become so much more valuable.


Focus on what you can control rather than things you cannot!

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Trusting God

Reading: Genesis 47-50


Genesis 50:20 is one of my favorite verses in the Bible. After all was said and done between Joseph and his brothers, Joseph made this profound statement: “But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good,”  Satan is your enemy, and it is his desire to set snares and traps for you. He wants evil to reign in your life, and he wants to see your utter destruction-but don’t ever forget that God is always working! Romans 8:28 is a perfect cross-reference here: “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.” Every situation and circumstance that you encounter must have God’s approval. Nothing can touch our lives that doesn’t first pass through His hands. 

So just for today, realize that each circumstance you face will work together for good. Don’t try to ponder how, just trust God that He will make it so.

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Example of a Dying Man

Several years ago after a service at Harpeth Baptist, one of our our members met me out in the church yard, he was dying in a later stage of cancer. Everyone knew of his condition. 


He got up close to me and said, “The Lord has been good to me.” 


 I nodded. I said just a few words.  There was no need in me being wordy. He said it all. What an example this man had. He could have cried out, “Why me?” “What have I done to deserve this incurable state?” But he said it all simply: “The Lord has been good to me.” 


When my time to go is short – and it always is really because The Bible says, “Boast not thyself of to morrow; for thou knowest not what a day may bring forth.” (Proverbs 27:1) Since my time is always short, I want to live daily like this dying member of our church did with these words on my lips, “The Lord has been good to me.”


Homer R. Dodson

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Loyalty Runs Out

1 Kings 1:7


Loyalty Runs Out


Although Joab had been loyal to David all this time, he now sides with Adonijah. While I disagree with him, I can clearly see Joab’s point. He wants the Kingdom to continue. In fact he is so loyal to David he feels supporting the new king shows it. In his mentality, supporting the new young excited man secures the Kingdom for David & family. All the while, to you and me, his loyalty has ceased.


Loyalty runs out. You may have friends now that won’t be your friends later in life. Things change, people change. The key is to be able to understand their point of view and not take it as a personal attack.


Joab was thinking of himself. He felt that supporting the new King secured his future better than supporting the old King. He threw years of service and loyalty out the door by worrying about what might happen next! People will think of themselves. No matter how loving a person may seem, “I” is still #1. We can’t help it, we can’t get around it. It is important that we know & realize that loyalty runs out.

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God at Work

Reading: Genesis 44-47


God sent me before you to preserve your life.


Joseph finally revealed his identity to his brothers. I’m sure with wide eyes, their hearts sank…would Joseph reprimand them and sentence them to great punishment? No! As the story reiterates again and again, “The Lord was with Joseph.” Rather than scorn or speak in bitterness to his brethren, he told them (45:5) that “God did send me before you to preserve life.” Wow. Joseph really understood what it meant to be an optimist! Joseph had been through many hard times and could have been a very angry, resentful person, but he chose to be something better. He had the right outlook on things, and rather than seeing the negative in his situation, he saw that God was working in his life the whole time.  

Just for today, I will look at my seemingly negative circumstances in a different light. I will try to see how God may be working in my infirmities.

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Just Thinking

This post was originally published 1/27/2011...


Think of the joy that Oprah Winfrey had this week when she learned for a fact that she had a half sister. It was proved from the DNA.


God put identification on us: a piece of fingernail, one single hair, fingerprints, palm prints…that I can readily think of. We are unique and as the technology advances, we can find each other. But, more beautifully, God knows us and where we are.


I love the scripture, “I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well.” Psalms 139:14.


God knows where each one of us are. That’s wonderful and fearful. And it would be great if people from Oprah Winfrey right on up to you and me would know that more. It was a delightful week for Oprah, for she found someone. It’s a great day for us because we found more evidence of the God who is near. Let us draw nigh unto His throne of grace.


@Homer

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April 30, 2021

Church Picnic

Sunday, May 2, 12-6pm

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