Our Daily Bread: Forwarded
- READ: Hebrews 13:1-8 Appended
Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you
have. For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”
Having played intercollegiate soccer, I’ve never lost my love for “The
Beautiful Game.” I especially enjoy watching the English Premier League. One
reason is the skill and speed with which the game is played there. Also, I love
the way the fans sing in support of their beloved “sides.” For instance,
Liverpool has for years had “You’ll Never Walk Alone” as its theme. How moving
to hear 50,000 fans rise as one to sing the lyrics of that old standard! It’s
an encouragement to players and fans alike that together they will see each
other through to the end. Walk alone? Never.
This sentiment has meaning for everyone. Because each of us is made for
community, isolation and loneliness are among the most painful of human
experiences. During painful times, our faith is vital.
The child of God never needs to fear abandonment. Even if people turn on us,
friends forsake us, or circumstances separate us from loved ones, we are never
alone. God has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you” (Heb. 13:5). This
is not just a nice tune or clever lyrics offering an empty sentiment. It is the
promise of God Himself to those who are the objects of His love. He is there—and
He isn’t going away.
With Christ, you will never walk alone. —Bill Crowder
God’s unseen presence comforts me,
I know He’s always near;
And when life’s storms besiege my soul,
He says, “My child, don’t fear.” —D. De Haan
God’s presence with us is one of His greatest presents to us.
Concluding Exhortations 1 Keep on loving one another as brothers and sisters. 2
Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing some people
have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it. 3 Continue to remember
those in prison as if you were together with them in prison, and those who are
mistreated as if you yourselves were suffering.
4 Marriage should be honored by all, and the marriage bed kept pure, for God
will judge the adulterer and all the sexually immoral. 5 Keep your lives free
from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said,
“Never will I leave you;
never will I forsake you.”[a]
6 So we say with confidence,
“The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid.
What can mere mortals do to me?”[b]
7 Remember your leaders, who spoke the word of God to you. Consider the outcome
of their way of life and imitate their faith. 8 Jesus Christ is the same
yesterday and today and forever.
1. Hebrews 13:5 Deut. 31:6
2. Hebrews 13:6 Psalm 118:6,7
- READ: Psalm 31:9-15
Have mercy on me, O Lord, for I am in trouble; my eye wastes away with grief, yes, my soul and my body! —Psalm 31:9
Today marks the 10th anniversary of the terrorist attacks in the US on
September 11, 2001. It’s hard to think about that date without mental
images of the destruction, grief, and loss that swept over America and
the world following those tragic events. The loss of thousands of lives
was compounded by the depth of loss felt corporately—a lost sense of
security as a country. The sorrow of loss, personal and corporate, will
always accompany the memory of the events of that day.
Those horrific events are not the only painful memories of September 11. It
also marks the anniversary of my father-in-law’s death. Jim’s loss is
felt deeply within our family and
his circle of friends.
No matter what kind of sorrow we experience, there is only one real
comfort—the mercy of God. David, in his own heartache, cried to his
heavenly Father, “Have mercy on me, O Lord, for I am in trouble; my eye wastes away with grief, yes, my soul and my body!” (Ps. 31:9). Only in the mercy of God can we find comfort for our pain and peace for our troubled hearts.
In all losses, we can turn to the true Shepherd, Jesus Christ, who alone can heal our brokenness and grief. —Bill Crowder
We have a Friend
who’ll never leave,
Who’s closer than a brother;
He’s there to meet our deepest needs,
To comfort like no other. —Sper
When God permits suffering, He also provides comfort.