TITLE: Friend or Foe
DATE: January 30, 2019
TEXT: Matthew 28:20 (ESV) - 20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
Yesterday the devotion was about a Major Summerford. Although the story was a great one, I don’t know if Summerford was real or manufactured.
In contrast I have no doubts about a Croatian music teacher by the name of Frane Selak. What follows is real and not made up. Ready? Here are some of the high points (or low points) of his life.):
In 2003, Frane won $1,110,000 in the lottery.
So does the Lord love Frane, or not? Is Frane blessed or cursed? And, as long as I’m asking, let me broaden the question to include you… your friends…. your family….the folks at the Chevy plants which closed down just before Christmas…the teens who feel nobody will ever love him… the junior high student who really does study, but fails the test and feels stupid… the hard-working executive who keeps getting passed over… the farmer whose fields were flattened by hail when his neighbors came through just fine…
For almost all of us there are the moments when we look to heaven and ask, “Lord, why me? What have I done to deserve this?”
These are questions which have an answer.
These things come your way because you are a sinner living in a sinful world. Understand, it’s not that you commit sin “A” and directly receive punishment “B”. It doesn't work that way. Sinful people have sad and sorrowful things happen to them.
Which is why you need a Savior. Jesus is humanity’s Hope. He is our only hope. Do you want out of this veil of tears? Look to Jesus. Do you need forgiveness (and who doesn't) Jesus is the answer.
Look to Jesus. See the sinless Savior who suffered so you wouldn’t have to. See Him being rejected by His own nation, religious leaders and government, so you would be accepted into heaven. See Him live in poverty so you could be rich eternally. See Him die so you might live.
He is the answer to the question: does God love me? Absolutely.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, there are times that circumstances and situations can weigh us down. At such times we often wonder if we are all alone. The manger, the cross and the empty tomb are our assurances that we will never be alone. The risen Redeemer has forgiven our sins and is with us even in the worst of times. In His Name we pray. Amen.
The music which introduces and concludes our devotions was written by Guy Baumann, one of my long-ago confirmands. He is singing with three brothers. This song comes from the album: The Baumann Brothers which may be ordered here: http://thebaumannbrothers.com/index.html