Archive for the ‘Satisfaction’ Category

September 8th, 2015

A Righteous Man Shall Surely Live

“If a man is righteous and does what is just and right–if he does not eat upon the mountains or lift up his eyes to the idols of the house of Israel, does not defile his neighbor’s wife or approach a woman in her time of menstrual impurity, does not oppress anyone, but restores to the debtor his pledge, commits no robbery, gives his bread to the hungry and covers the naked with a garment, does not lend at interest or take any profit, withholds his hand from injustice, executes true justice between man and man, walks in my statutes, and keeps my rules by acting faithfully–he is righteous; he shall surely live, declares the Lord GOD.” Ezekiel 18:5-9 (ESV)

God has a standard for us. This standard is not some power-play from on high, in which the Lord seeks to show His creation just how much authority He has over them. Rather, this standard is for the good of creation. The best thing that God can give to His creation is Himself, knowing that He is the fulfillment of everything that we seek. If a man needs love, he should turn to the Lord because the Lord is the perfect and infinite source of love. The same truth applies to all of our most basic needs. The problem, though, arises when you and I fail to remain holy, for when any sinfulness comes into our lives it affects our access to the fullness of God. When we don’t act as God indicates above and throughout the law, we defile ourselves and become unworthy of the presence of God and, thus, are unable to find true fulfillment.

This dilemma, however, reveals to us once again the beauty of Christ, who did do what was right and just. He never lifted His eyes to idols nor became ritually impure as directed by the law. He came not to oppress but give freedom and restoration. He never robbed anyone, forsook anyone in need, nor sought to harm someone in order to advance Himself. He was the perfect picture of righteousness, and because of that we can surely live! You see, He, in spite of His righteousness, took upon our punishment for our shortcomings and gave us His righteousness. Because of that, we can now find true satisfaction and, having been satisfied, seek to communicate that truth to those in need around us.

Grace and peace,

Jared Richard
Mobilization Pastor (Online Devotional Guest Author)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/jaredrichard

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Tuesday, September 8th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Ezekiel, Jesus, Satisfaction.
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August 25th, 2015

We Give Thanks Forever

“But we your people, the sheep of your pasture, will give thanks to you forever; from generation to generation we will recount your praise.” Psalm 79:13 (ESV)

We were created to worship the Lord! Look how He has provided for us as His sheep. Look at the pasture He has laid forth for us. He has satisfied us in every way. He has taken upon Himself the penalty for our sin. He has restored us into life abundant and everlasting. He has made us into a people for His own possession to represent Him to the nations. He has filled us with His Holy Spirit, allowing us to experience its fruit fully. What a blessing it is to have the Lord as our Shepherd, for under His care we truly shall not want.

The difference between the people of God and the enemies of God, according to this psalm, is our praise. The enemies of God question His name and make a mockery of His people. His covenant people, though, by proclaiming this psalm step forth with confidence in their Lord to redeem and protect.

Let not the nations question where our allegiance lies. May we as God’s people proclaim boldly the affection we have for our Great Satisfier, and may we further remember that this is only the beginning! As God’s children, our eternity will be a beautiful continuation of our faithful obedience here to ascribe worth to our worthy creator.

Give thanks to the Lord, today, for He is good! Perhaps take a moment and write down the many ways you have experienced His provision personally and take a moment today to tell someone about it as a witness to His goodness.

Grace and peace,

Jared Richard
Mobilization Pastor (Online Devotional Guest Author)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/jaredrichard

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Tuesday, August 25th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Praise, Psalms, Satisfaction.
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July 29th, 2015

Repentance Leads to Destruction

“Then you will defile your carved idols overlaid with silver and your gold-plated metal images. You will scatter them as unclean things. You will say to them, ‘Be gone!’” Isaiah 30:22 (ESV)

True repentance leads to the destruction of the idol in your life that is stealing your affection for the Lord. The goal of repentance is not for you to manage your sin nor keep it under control; the goal is for you to destroy your sin. For the Israelite people, when they repented they could not afford to keep the carved idols overlaid with silver nor the gold-plated images, for doing so would have left open the door for another transgression. They had to remove the temptation altogether in order to turn from their sin completely.

We must treat the idols in our lives the same way. When we recognize that they are interfering with our covenant relationship with God Almighty and we repent of them, we must destroy the idols and say to them, “Be gone!” Don’t be so naive to think that you can keep the source of your sin near and not stumble. Destroy it or it will destroy you.

For many of us, this act of destruction is a very hard thing to do. Our idol can be a relationship, a sport we have spent years trying to perfect, a secret sin kept hidden for decades, or even an act of service in the church that we think is earning the favor of our Lord. While we must not be unwise in the way we dispose of our idol, we must also not wait forever in hopes that how we react to this particular stimulus will change.

What do you need to destroy in your life? What is stealing your affection from the Lord? What could you fill the void left by its absence with to lead you to greater intimacy with the Lord? Throw out the idols and taste of the satisfaction of the Lord. See that He alone is good!

Grace and peace,

Jared Richard
Pastor of Mobilization & Young Adults (Online Devotional Guest Author)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/jaredrichard

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Wednesday, July 29th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Isaiah, Repentance, Satisfaction.
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June 27th, 2015

The Whole Duty of Man

“The end of the matter; all has been heard. Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man.” Ecclesiastes 12:13 ESV

After a very long discussion of how this world can offer nothing that truly satisfies a man, the Preacher of Ecclesiastes comes to this very wise and final conclusion: our responsibility to the Lord as His creation is to honor Him by being fully satisfied by Him.

God created in order to share with a people the fullness of His Being, meaning all His characteristics and attributes.  He wanted to show them His perfect love, peace, creativity, and provision so that in turn these people would respond in worship to Him, recognizing Him as the glorious God that He is.

Truly, this is why we exist: to glorify God and worship as we recognize our inability to be satisfied apart from Him.

Along the way, though, you and I have the tendency to get distracted and turn to created things to satisfy us in ways that only God can.  This distraction is the essence of sin: looking at our God, who is the perfection of everything we need, and saying to Him, “I would rather have this thing you created than you.”  We give the glory reserved for God to something He created, and we do it all the time.  How many times have you turned to created things to fulfill you in ways that you know only God can?  Why would we rob our God, who alone is worthy of our praise, of the glory He deserves?

The Preacher says you can search this whole world and try everything under the sun to find satisfaction, but none of it will truly satisfy.  So, quit looking down here for satisfaction that can only be found up there!  Turn your attention to the Lord.  Fear Him and keep His commandments, knowing that when you do, you will discover your ultimate purpose and be joyously satisfied in our infinite God.

Grace and peace,

Jared Richard
Pastor of Mobilization & Young Adults (Online Devotional Guest Author)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/jaredrichard

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Saturday, June 27th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Creator, Satisfaction, Worship.
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June 22nd, 2015

Worship, Our Joy Expressed

“I will praise the LORD as long as I live; I will sing praises to my God while I have my being.” (Psalm 146:1 ESV)

We were created to worship God, and everywhere you or I look we can find another reason to worship Him.

Look at creation.  What a creative and generous God we serve!  Mountains, oceans, the animals on the African plane, and a host of other examples all communicate the beautiful ingenuity of our glorious God.  He is worthy to be praised for His creation.  Look at His creation today, be filled with joy, and respond in worship to the Lord of heaven and earth.

Look at God’s provision for you.  Do you have a home?  Do you have a family?  Do you have a church family? Do you have food for today? Do you have a job? Do you have a car or some other means of transportation? Do you have a Savior who has rescued you from eternal wrath through His sacrificial work on the cross when you were without hope?  Do you have the revealed Word of God to help mold and shape you into the image of Christ by the empowerment of the Holy Spirit?  Think about the many ways God has provided for you, be filled with joy, and respond in worship to our great and generous God.

I could go on and on with innumerable reasons to stand and worship our God, but I could never describe how He interacts with you personally on a daily basis.  I challenge you to look today for the many ways God is active in your life and respond with a heart of gratitude and praise for His presence.  Will you join with creation today in praising our God, who is worthy?

Grace and peace,

Jared Richard
Pastor of Mobilization & Young Adults (Online Devotional Guest Author)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/jaredrichard

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Monday, June 22nd, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Joy, Satisfaction, Worship.
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October 26th, 2014

A True Delight

“Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.” Psalm 37:4 (ESV)

A true delight is knowing God’s will and doing God’s will. A true delight is having the peace of God in the midst of life’s storms. A true delight is having the assurance of heaven and eternal life.

John Piper has affirmed, “God is most glorified when we are most satisfied in Him.” What is your primary source of satisfaction? Where do you turn to experience joy and fulfillment? Your love relationship with the Lord is the conduit through which the blessings of God flow. He is the source of life that is truly life. He fills you with an inexpressible and glorious joy (1 Pet. 1:8).

As you commune with the Lord and take delight in Him, He will give you the desires of your heart. When you are rightly related to God in Christ and you choose to seek Him with all of your heart, you will find that your desires are in line. As you delight in the Lord, you will not desire anything that is contrary to His will. Intimacy with the Lord heightens your sensitivity to God’s activity. Your delight becomes God’s agenda.

  • “For then you will delight yourself in the Almighty and lift up your face to God.” Job 22:26 (ESV)
  • “He fulfills the desire of those who fear him; he also hears their cry and saves them.” Psalm 145:19 (ESV)

Life in a fallen world has many competing forces. There are countless distractions that seek to minimize your friendship with God and trivialize your daily pursuit of His Presence. Recognize that nothing will ever satisfy your soul like living in unbroken fellowship with the Lord. Take delight in Him. Feast on His Word. Solidify your pursuit by establishing a standing appointment with God.

Drawing Near,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Sunday, October 26th, 2014 at 1:00 am
Category Delight, Satisfaction, Seeking God.
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October 27th, 2013

Endless Satisfaction

“‘I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved. He will come in and go out, and find pasture.’” John 10:9 (NIV)

Has your life on this broken planet delivered what it promised? Have you ever been disappointed with your life? God never intended for this world to satisfy the longings of your heart. The treasures of earth cannot complete the treasure chest of your existence. God created you with a longing that will never be satisfied by temporal pursuits and earthly manna.

Enjoy the green pasture of endless satisfaction that comes through an abiding relationship with Jesus Christ. He is the gate for the sheep. In Him, you will be granted the privilege of coming in and going out to find pasture. As John Piper says, “God is most glorified when we are most satisfied in Him.”

  • “The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he restores my soul. He guides me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.” Ps. 23:1-3 (NIV)
  • “For you were like sheep going astray, but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.” 1 Pet. 2:25 (NIV)

Soul nourishment comes through an ongoing love relationship with Jesus that is real and personal. Enjoy the endless satisfaction of His green pasture by feeding on His Word, resting in His purpose, and trusting in His daily provision. Jesus is more than enough. He is your sufficiency. Jesus has already overcome any obstacle that you face. Entrust your life to Him and seek Him with all of your heart. Draw close to Jesus and cultivate a vibrant prayer life. Build meaningful relationships with other sheep and live to benefit others.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Sunday, October 27th, 2013 at 1:00 am
Category Gate, I am sayings, Satisfaction.
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September 8th, 2012

If a Man is Righteous, He Shall Surely Live!

“If a man is righteous and does what is just and right–if he does not eat upon the mountains or lift up his eyes to the idols of the house of Israel, does not defile his neighbor’s wife or approach a woman in her time of menstrual impurity, does not oppress anyone, but restores to the debtor his pledge, commits no robbery, gives his bread to the hungry and covers the naked with a garment, does not lend at interest or take any profit, withholds his hand from injustice, executes true justice between man and man, walks in my statutes, and keeps my rules by acting faithfully–he is righteous; he shall surely live, declares the Lord GOD.” Ezekiel 18:5-9 (ESV)

God has a standard for us. This standard is not some power-play from on high, in which the Lord seeks to show His creation just how much authority He has over them. Rather, this standard is for the good of creation. The best thing that God can give to His creation is Himself, knowing that He is the fulfillment of everything that we seek. If a man needs love, he should turn to the Lord because the Lord is the perfect and infinite source of love. The same truth applies to all of our most basic needs. The problem, though, arises when you and I fail to remain holy, for when any sinfulness comes into our lives it affects our access to the fullness of God. When we don’t act as God indicates above and throughout the law, we defile ourselves and become unworthy of the presence of God and, thus, are unable to find true fulfillment.

This dilemma, however, reveals to us once again the beauty of Christ, who did do what was right and just. He never lifted His eyes to idols nor became ritually impure as directed by the law. He came not to oppress but give freedom and restoration. He never robbed anyone, forsook anyone in need, nor sought to harm someone in order to advance Himself. He was the perfect picture of righteousness, and because of that we can surely live! You see, He, in spite of His righteousness, took upon our punishment for our shortcomings and gave us His righteousness. Because of that, we can now find true satisfaction and, having been satisfied, seek to communicate that truth to those in need around us.

Chronological Bible Reading Plan: (Day 244:  Ezekiel 18-20)

Grace and peace,

Jared Richard
Associate Pastor (Online Devotional Guest Author)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/jaredrichard

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Saturday, September 8th, 2012 at 1:00 am
Category Ezekiel, Jesus, Satisfaction.
Interact No Comments
August 25th, 2012

We Give Thanks Forever!

“But we your people, the sheep of your pasture, will give thanks to you forever; from generation to generation we will recount your praise.” Psalm 79:13 (ESV)

We were created to worship the Lord! Look how He has provided for us as His sheep. Look at the pasture He has laid forth for us. He has satisfied us in every way. He has taken upon Himself the penalty for our sin. He has restored us into life abundant and everlasting. He has made us into a people for His own possession to represent Him to the nations. He has filled us with His Holy Spirit, allowing us to experience its fruit fully. What a blessing it is to have the Lord as our Shepherd, for under His care we truly shall not want.

The difference between the people of God and the enemies of God, according to this psalm, is our praise. The enemies of God question His name and make a mockery of His people. His covenant people, though, by proclaiming this psalm step forth with confidence in their Lord to redeem and protect.

Let not the nations question where our allegiance lies. May we as God’s people proclaim boldly the affection we have for our Great Satisfier, and may we further remember that this is only the beginning! As God’s children, our eternity will be a beautiful continuation of our faithful obedience here to ascribe worth to our worthy creator.

Give thanks to the Lord, today, for He is good! Perhaps take a moment and write down the many ways you have experienced His provision personally and take a moment today to tell someone about it as a witness to His goodness.

Chronological Bible Reading Plan: (Day 230:  Jeremiah 38-40; Psalms 74,79)

Grace and peace,

Jared Richard
Associate Pastor (Online Devotional Guest Author)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/jaredrichard

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Saturday, August 25th, 2012 at 1:00 am
Category Praise, Psalms, Satisfaction.
Interact No Comments
July 29th, 2012

Repentance Leads to Destruction

“Then you will defile your carved idols overlaid with silver and your gold-plated metal images. You will scatter them as unclean things. You will say to them, ‘Be gone!’” Isaiah 30:22 (ESV)

True repentance leads to the destruction of the idol in your life that is stealing your affection for the Lord. The goal of repentance is not for you to manage your sin nor keep it under control; the goal is for you to destroy your sin. For the Israelite people, when they repented they could not afford to keep the carved idols overlaid with silver nor the gold-plated images, for doing so would have left open the door for another transgression. They had to remove the temptation altogether in order to turn from their sin completely.

We must treat the idols in our lives the same way. When we recognize that they are interfering with our covenant relationship with God Almighty and we repent of them, we must destroy the idols and say to them, “Be gone!” Don’t be so naive to think that you can keep the source of your sin near and not stumble. Destroy it or it will destroy you.

For many of us, this act of destruction is a very hard thing to do. Our idol can be a relationship, a sport we have spent years trying to perfect, a secret sin kept hidden for decades, or even an act of service in the church that we think is earning the favor of our Lord. While we must not be unwise in the way we dispose of our idol, we must also not wait forever in hopes that how we react to this particular stimulus will change.

What do you need to destroy in your life? What is stealing your affection from the Lord? What could you fill the void left by its absence with to lead you to greater intimacy with the Lord? Throw out the idols and taste of the satisfaction of the Lord. See that He alone is good!

Chronological Bible Reading Plan: (Day 203:  Isaiah 28-30)

Grace and peace,

Jared Richard
Associate Pastor (Online Devotional Guest Author)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/jaredrichard

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Sunday, July 29th, 2012 at 1:00 am
Category Isaiah, Repentance, Satisfaction.
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