Devotions

Author Archives: LaRae Wing

We Need God, and Each Other

Raised Arms | Devotion 2: We Need God, and Each Other
LaRae Wing

“Then Amalek came and fought with Israel at Rephidim. So Moses said to Joshua, ‘Choose for us men, and go out and fight with Amalek. Tomorrow I will stand on the top of the hill with the staff of God in my hand.’ So Joshua did as Moses told him, and fought with Amalek, while Moses, Aaron, and Hur went up to the top of the hill. Whenever Moses held up his hand, Israel prevailed, and whenever he lowered his hand, Amalek prevailed. But Moses’ hands grew weary, so they took a stone and put it under him, and he sat on it, while Aaron and Hur held up his hands, one on one side, and the other on the other side. So his hands were steady until the going down of the sun. And Joshua overwhelmed Amalek and his people with the sword.” Exodus 17:8-13

“Oh, I get by with a little help from my friends.”

This line, made famous in a song by The Beatles in 1967 (Yes, I am that old), certainly rings true with me. Have you ever over-committed yourself and basically could not physically or mentally complete the task without help. Honestly, there have been periods in my life when precious godly family and friends have been my lifeline. These situations have been entirely my fault because I have a hard time saying “No.” I do not stop to think about asking God about it, or even think about all my other commitments. I just say, “Sure, I can do that.” Then reality hits and I scream for help. They come to my rescue. Oh, I have been blessed many times in this way.

There have also been times when I was plugging along trying to complete a task that I did not realize was too big for me, and some great friends would just show up to help. They saw that I was struggling when I did not, and they came alongside and supported with physical help, words of encouragement, and needed suggestions to make the job easier. I knew I had received grace upon grace; blessing upon blessing.

In the verses from Exodus, we see Moses following the command of God. Moses was once again trusting and depending on God, knowing that God was the only One with the power to help them overcome the army of Amalek. Moses’ obedience and dependence on God was a great example to the Israelites. It made them realize that God alone was truly able to provide for all their needs. From the time Moses was called by God at the burning bush until this time of the battle, a wonderful relationship had been developed between Moses and his Father God. He had learned that God would never leave or forsake him (Hebrews 13:5) and that God would show him great things when he called upon Him (Jeremiah 33:3). Moses knew he needed to know God and that his relationship with God was paramount in his life.

That is so true for all of us. We need that close, personal relationship with our Heavenly Father (Psalm 23; Proverbs 18:24), and He desires a close relationship with us (Leviticus 26:12; Matthew 11:28). How do we develop a relationship with God? We do it just as we do with others; we spend time with God. We do that through prayer, reading the Bible, and meditating on the Scriptures. It is the sweetest, most fulfilling, and the best relationship we can have.

Likewise, we see in Exodus chapter 17 that God had brought to Moses’ life people who would help him in time of need. Moses’ relationship with Aaron and Hur was one that resulted in assistance and support when needed. As the Scripture stated, Moses would be on the hill holding up the staff God had given to him. It would be a reminder of all the great things that God had done with that staff in the past, and a sign to the Israelite army that God was in the midst of their battle. As the battle continued throughout the day, Moses’ arms grew tired. As long as he held the staff high, the Israelites won the battle, but when his arms began to sag, the Amalekites began to win. Realizing their leader was becoming exhausted during this difficult battle, Aaron and Hur came to the aid of Moses. They gave him a place to sit and held up his arms. Moses needed support, and they gave it.

It is wonderful when friends jump in to help when we need it. Just think about our leaders in the church whom God has called specifically to minister to us. What an encouragement we can be if we come alongside to support them. We need each other. That is the way God made us. He created the Church for us so that we can support and serve one another. God has promised to supply all our needs (Philippians 4:19), and many times, He uses others to supply those needs.

How can you be the hands and feet of Jesus to others today? Can you offer assistance to others with help, encouragement, Scripture, and prayer before they ask? Look around. Who needs relief, comfort, and support? You could be the difference between a loss or a win in someone’s battle.

Moses, Moses, Moses

Excuses | Devotion 2: Moses, Moses, Moses
LaRae Wing

So often Moses is criticized for his hesitance to serve as God’s spokesman to Pharaoh. God had spoken to him from the burning bush. We think, “Wow, Moses! How can you hesitate to do everything He tells you to do? You have heard God’s voice. He has spoken to you from a dry desert bush that is on fire, but was never consumed. Are you kidding me?” Not only that but God had given him signs (rod to a snake – Exodus 4:4-5, leprous hand healed – Exodus 4:6-8); yet Moses was still hesitant to believe that God could equip him to be His representative.

We wonder, “Why?” How could Moses be uncertain? Maybe his faith was weak. Maybe he was afraid because of his past (Exodus 2:11-15). Maybe he liked his life the way it was. Whatever the reason, we criticize him for just not doing what God had told him to do. Is that just like us? Are we critical despite our own weaknesses?

I specifically recall a time several years ago that God impressed me to plan a special activity for the senior women in my church, and what were my first thoughts? “I cannot do this. It is too much. I am too busy. Why me, Lord? I have never done anything like this before. I need help, a lot of help.” I then immediately thought, “I cannot do this without Sherry” (my best friend and whiz at organization and timelines). How could I be critical of Moses? I was behaving just as he did.

Have you ever had doubts when you felt God’s leading? Have you struggled with feeling inadequate or following through? Please remember that Philippians 4:19 says, “And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.”  We often feel this only pertains to material necessities, but when God says “every need” He means all needs – material, physical, emotional, and spiritual.

If you continue to read in Exodus, you will see that Moses, with the help of his brother Aaron, did acquiesce to his calling from God. God’s faithfulness to the mission He assigned to Moses is accomplished over and over again. Also in other biblical accounts, we can see that when God’s child follows His lead, there is victory and blessing (Abraham, Joseph, Gideon, David, and Elijah). If God leads you, you can rest assured that He has and will equip you.

“Now may the God of peace himself sanctify you completely, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. He who calls you is faithful; he will surely do it.” I Thessalonian 5:23-24   

The End that was the Beginning

Finished | Devotion #6: The End that was the Beginning
LaRae Wing | Secretary

“When Jesus had received the sour wine, he said, ‘It is finished,’ and he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.”  John 19:30

In our world of calendars, schedules, and agendas, the word “finished” is often viewed as “over and done with.” It seems to implicate that something has been checked off a list and it is time to move on to the next thing: Get up, work out, make breakfast, balance checkbook, drop kids at school, go to work, finish  project, meet with boss, pick up kids, take daughter to gymnastics, coach son’s softball team, pick up daughter, prepare dinner, clean garage, help kids with homework, put kids to bed, breathe for 5 minutes before trying to complete ten other things that need to be done before bed, write out tomorrow’s schedule, fall into bed for a few hours of exhausted sleep, get up and begin another day with another full schedule.

It seems strange to say it, but Jesus had a checklist too. In order to prove to people that He was truly the Son of God (the Messiah), He had to fulfill the prophecies that were made about His life and death that began as far back as the book of Genesis. Although there were still more prophecies to be fulfilled, Jesus’ list was getting shorter with every event He experienced. Jesus’ death was the perfect and final sacrifice necessary for forgiveness of sin, and even though Jesus spoke the words, “It is finished,” referring to His need to die, Jesus was not “finished.”  In fact, He was just entering the next phase of His work on our behalf.

Jesus’ death on the cross was the determining factor in our ability to have our sins pardoned, yet His work continued. He is eternal; therefore, His work is eternal. The resurrection of Jesus secured our hope of eternal life. That is why Jesus is our Living Savior. No other individual that people worship has been able to conquer death. Jesus Christ established His place as the One, True, and Living Son of God by conquering death and the grave.

The great news is that the perpetual work of Jesus is for us, His children. Hebrews 9:24 says, “For Christ has entered… into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God on our behalf.” Also, in Romans 8:34 we read, “Christ Jesus is the one who died—more than that, who was raised—who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us.” Jesus is taking care of us by talking to God about and for us. Just as He was so personally involved in His disciples’ lives while He lived here on earth, we continue to be on His “to do” list while in Heaven. 

The Savior’s task of personal involvement with His children is multifaceted. Not only is He interceding for us to the Father, but Jesus also has told us of His work in John 14:2-3, “In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you?  And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also.” Jesus has a plan for us to be with Him eternally. Because of Jesus, “a forever home” is prepared for us when we leave this world behind.

Matthew 16:27 adds, “For the Son of Man [Jesus] is going to come with his angels in the glory of his Father, and then he will repay each person according to what he has done.” Jesus is also making preparation for His glorious return to this earth. Then, as Romans 14:11 says, “As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God.” Not one person on this earth will be able to deny who Jesus is.

Do you feel as if your list never ends? Are you stressed because you can never complete the tasks before you? Are you overwhelmed by the length or magnitude of that list? Take a moment and remember that when Jesus said, “It is finished,” He died for you. He rose for you. However, He was not finished; His work for you did not end. Talk to Him; He is interceding! Praise Him; He is preparing! Hope in Him; He is coming!



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