Archive for April, 2015

April 30th, 2015

Orchestrated by God

“Adam, Seth, Enosh; Kenan, Mahalalel, Jared; Enoch, Methuselah, Lamech; Noah, Shem, Ham, and Japheth.” 1 Chronicles 1:1-4 (ESV)

People matter to God. As you read chapter one and chapter two of 1 Chronicles, you read a list of names. Some of them may be familiar to you while some of the names may seem foreign. The chronicler detailed the Davidic dynasty in Judah and traced the genealogies to demonstrate how David and Judah were chosen by God. Only one of Noah’s three sons, Shem, would be the one through whom the redemptive blessing would come.

God’s story of redemption is filled with people. God uses all kinds of people to accomplish His purposes and His plans. Nothing can thwart God’s will. Remember, that life is not about your story that you invite God into. Life is about God’s story that He invites you into. Will you allow God to have His way in your life?

What names do you have on your list? If you were to write down the name of every person God has used in your life to point you to Christ, to encourage you in the faith, or to model Christ before you, how many names would be on your list? God strategically places people in your life to help you become the fully devoted follower of Christ you were created to become. Throughout your journey, God sprinkles relationships along the path to draw you closer to Christ and to sensitize you to His abiding presence.

Don’t rush past the people God places in your life. Slow down and enjoy the abundance of God’s blessings. Just as people matter to God, you matter to God! Allow God to use you to be an irresistible influence for His glory. You are on His list!

Riding HIS Wave,

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

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Thursday, April 30th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category 1 Chronicles, Genealogy, God's Purpose.
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April 29th, 2015

My Rock and My Redeemer

“I am weary with my moaning; every night I flood my bed with tears; I drench my couch with my weeping. My eye wastes away because of grief; it grows weak because of all my foes.” Psalm 6:6-7 (ESV)

David was well acquainted with victory, despair, and grief. He had known the favor of God and the wrath of Saul. David combated his enemies while seeking to remain true to the Lord his God. Through seasons of adversity, he became weary with his moaning and flooded his bed with tears. Grief overwhelmed him as he drenched his couch with his weeping. He grew weak because of his foes. In the midst of his abiding pain, David revealed the solidarity of his faith in the Lord.

  • “You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.” Psalm 16:11 (ESV)
  • “Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer.” Psalm 19:14 (ESV)

Latch onto the Lord who will be a stronghold in times of trouble. Place your total confidence and trust in the Lord for He will not forsake those who seek Him. In God’s presence, you will receive fullness of joy. God will make known unto you the path of life. Outside of Him, you will not find life. God places pleasures at your right hand.

Maintain integrity by practicing moment-by-moment surrender to the Lordship of Christ. Submit your tongue to the Lord and yield your heart to His prompting. May the words of your mouth and the meditation of your heart be acceptable in His sight. The Lord is your rock and your redeemer.

Riding HIS Wave,

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

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Wednesday, April 29th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category God's Provision, Grief, Psalms.
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April 28th, 2015

David Anointed King

“And the men of Judah came, and there they anointed David king over the house of Judah.” 2 Samuel 2:4 (ESV)

God’s will cannot be thwarted. God will accomplish His purposes and God will fulfill His plan. God’s timing is not always easy for us to understand with our human limitations. God is infinite and we are finite. There is a tremendous gap that our intellect cannot fill. God is omniscient, omnipotent, and omnipresent. In His grace and mercy, God chooses to use us in His master plan.

From a human perspective, David seemed to be the least likely candidate to be anointed as king. In fact, his father Jesse did not even include him in the lineup when Samuel showed up. After Samuel examined the sons of Jesse, he inquired if Jesse had anymore. Jesse revealed to Samuel that he had his youngest son out in the field tending sheep.

  • “And he sent and brought him in. Now he was ruddy and had beautiful eyes and was handsome. And the Lord said, ‘Arise, anoint him, for this is he.’ Then Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him in the midst of his brothers. And the Spirit of the Lord rushed upon David from that day forward. And Samuel rose up and went to Ramah.” 1 Samuel 16:12-13 (ESV)

God affirmed His selection by telling Samuel to anoint David. Many years passed from that moment of affirmation to the moment when the men of Judah came to anoint David king over the house of Judah. David had experienced major battles, heartbreak, and mourning the death of King Saul and Jonathan. Now it was time for David to reign as king.

Wait for God’s timing. His timing is impeccable. God is working all things together for your good and His glory.

Riding HIS Wave,

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

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Tuesday, April 28th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category 2 Samuel, Anointed, David.
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April 27th, 2015

Your Help

“I lift up my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth.” Psalm 121:1-2 (ESV)

Where do you look for help? Where do you turn when life takes a turn for the worse? Lift up your eyes to the hills. Your help comes from the Lord. He made you. He made heaven. He made earth. The Creator of the universe created you and He knows you better than anyone else on the planet. God knows where you have been, where you are, and where you are going. He knows your fears, your frustrations, and your frailty. Lift up your eyes and call out to the One who loves you, who gave His only Son for you, and who has included you in His story of redemption.

  • “Our help is in the name of the Lord, who made heaven and earth.” Psalm 124:8 (ESV)
  • “Out of the depths I cry to you, O Lord! O Lord, hear my voice! Let your ears be attentive to the voice of my pleas for mercy!” Psalm 130:1-2 (ESV)

Cry out to the Lord for mercy in your time of need. Don’t suppress your pain. Express your heart to the Lord through prayer and receive nourishment for your soul. Your help comes from the Healer. Your help comes from the Maker of heaven and earth. Your help comes from the Creator who designed you and develops you for His glory.

God allows you to experience adversity in this life to build your spiritual muscles and to demonstrate His faithfulness to you. When you are in need of help, your desperation becomes a canvas upon which God can apply His paint of mercy and grace.

Riding HIS Wave,

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

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Monday, April 27th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Help, Provision, Psalms.
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April 26th, 2015

Thus Saul Died

“Then Saul said to his armor-bearer, ‘Draw your sword, and thrust me through with it, lest these uncircumcised come and thrust me through, and mistreat me.’ But his armor-bearer would not, for he feared greatly. Therefore Saul took his own sword and fell upon it. And when his armor-bearer saw that Saul was dead, he also fell upon his sword and died with him. Thus Saul died, and his three sons, and his armor-bearer, and all his men, on the same day together.” 1 Samuel 31:4-6 (ESV)

David successfully eluded Saul’s constant threats and consistent attempts to eliminate him. Saul had hurled his javelin at David while David played the lyre to sooth the king. Saul marshaled his army to pursue David on several occasions. In the midst of it all, David faithfully submitted to the Lord’s sovereignty, feared God, and honored the office of the king. David entrusted vengeance to the Lord.

  • “The Lord lives, and blessed be my rock, and exalted be the God of my salvation—the God who gave me vengeance and subdued peoples under me, who delivered me from my enemies; yes, you exalted me above those who rose against me; you rescued me from the man of violence.” Psalm 18:46-48 (ESV)

Let God be God in your life and in the midst of your circumstances. Trust God to handle the people He has created and to help you overcome trying circumstances. God will see you through. You can anchor your faith to the Rock of Ages. You can rest in the abundant provision of the God of your salvation. God will lavish you with His love and dispense His grace to match your need. Keep walking with God and trust Him to illuminate the path He wants you to take.

Riding HIS Wave,

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

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Sunday, April 26th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category 1 Samuel, Death, Saul.
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April 25th, 2015

Earnestly Seeking God

“O God, you are my God; earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you; my flesh faints for you, as in a dry and weary land where there is no water.” Psalm 63:1 (ESV)

How passionate is your pursuit of God? Is He your preoccupation? Our passion can easily divert to other things or other people. We can slip into being passionate about activities that have no eternal value. We can channel our passion in areas that diffuse our focus and keep us from keeping the main thing the main thing.

David demonstrated a vibrant walk with God. He would earnestly seek God and thirst for Him as in a dry and weary land. In his love relationship with God, David embodied a hunger and thirst for God that compelled him to pursue God daily and passionately.

  • “I call upon you, for you will answer me, O God; incline your ear to me; hear my words.” Psalm 17:6 (ESV)
  • “Let those who delight in my righteousness shout for joy and be glad and say evermore, ‘Great is the Lord, who delights in the welfare of his servant!’ Then my tongue shall tell of your righteousness and of your praise all the day long.” Psalm 35:27-38 (ESV)

If someone were to shadow you for seven days, what would they say about your passion? Would that person be able to detect your passion for the things of God? Would that person detect your devotion to the Lord and be inspired by your daily walk with the Lord?

Take some time to conduct a spiritual inventory of your life. Trace your walk with God and determine your level of intensity and try to measure your passion. Earnestly seek God. Thirst for Him. He is your God!

Riding HIS Wave,

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

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Saturday, April 25th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Psalms, Seeking God, Thirst.
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April 24th, 2015

Show Restraint

“And David answered and said, ‘Here is the spear, O king! Let one of the young men come over and take it. The Lord rewards every man for his righteousness and his faithfulness, for the Lord gave you into my hand today, and I would not put out my hand against the Lord’s anointed. Behold, as your life was precious this day in my sight, so may my life be precious in the sight of the Lord, and may he deliver me out of all tribulation.‘” 1 Samuel 26:22-24 (ESV)

David showed immense restraint a second time. He had the perfect opportunity to bring Saul’s evil pursuit to an end by killing Saul while he slept among his soldiers within the encampment. Saul’s spear was stuck in the ground at his head and could have easily been used by David to bring forth death.

  • “And David said, ‘As the Lord lives, the Lord will strike him, or his day will come to die, or he will go down into battle and perish. The Lord forbid that I should put out my hand against the Lord’s anointed. But take now the spear that is at his head and the jar of water, and let us go.’” 1 Samuel 26:10-11 (ESV)

Instead of taking matters into his own hands, David entrusted Saul to God’s care. Instead of inflicting the just vengeance on his enemy, David allowed God to have His rightful place in executing justice in His own time. David showed tremendous restraint. If he were to interpret the circumstances before him, David would have quickly concluded that God had given Saul into his hands. David wisely looked beyond his immediate circumstances and viewed his opportunity through the grid of God’s sovereignty.

What do you need to entrust to God’s sovereign care? Show restraint in your circumstances. Trust God!

Riding HIS Wave,

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

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Friday, April 24th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category 1 Samuel, David, Restraint.
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April 23rd, 2015

Delivered Out of Affliction

“The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit. Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the Lord delivers him out of them all.” Psalm 34:18-19 (ESV)

Being adopted into God’s family is the result of God’s gracious redemptive activity. He included you in His plan of redemption. Now that you are a child of God, you are considered an enemy to the devil and you stand in opposition to the devil’s mission. Just as Jesus had to combat the devil by quoting Scripture, you will have to be armed for battle.

Claim God’s promise that He is near the brokenhearted. Doing life on a broken planet is filled with obstacles to overcome and adversity to advance through. The Lord is near you. You will never walk alone. Even when you are crushed in spirit, the Lord will save you. Suffering is a part of the landscape for those who love the Lord and choose to live for His glory.

  • “For to this you have been called, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you might follow in his steps.” 1 Peter 2:21 (ESV)
  • “But I am like a green olive tree in the house of God. I trust in the steadfast love of God forever and ever.” Psalm 52:8 (ESV)

The Lord will deliver you out of your afflictions. Even if you let go of Him, Jesus will not let go of you. Follow in His steps and trust in the steadfast love of God. You are a child of the living God. You are like a green olive tree in the house of God. No weapon formed against you shall prosper. Trust the Lord with your present and your future.

Riding HIS Wave,

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

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Thursday, April 23rd, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Affliction, Comfort, Psalms.
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April 22nd, 2015

Tears in His Bottle

“You have kept count of my tossings; put my tears in your bottle. Are they not in your book?” Psalm 56:8 (ESV)

God created you for a divine purpose to fulfill. You are not here by accident; you are here by divine appointment. God designed you so that you can know Him personally and fulfill His plan intentionally. Fulfilling God’s agenda requires God’s enabling. You cannot continue His ministry in your own strength.

In this life you will face difficulties and go through seasons of uncertainty. Fatigue, exhaustion, and feeling depleted are normal features of living in a fallen world. God intimately knows your inmost feelings and He keeps count of all your wanderings. He puts your tears in His bottle. He records every step you take and every decision you make. Nothing escapes God’s attention.

  • “I know that the Lord will maintain the cause of the afflicted, and will execute justice for the needy.” Psalm 140:12 (ESV)
  • “With my voice I cry out to the Lord; with my voice I plead for mercy to the Lord. I pour out my complaint before him; I tell my trouble before him.” Psalm 142:1-2 (ESV)

Prayer enables you to express your heart to God. You have the sacred privilege of communicating with God through the grace-paved avenue of prayer. Acknowledge your dependency upon Him. The Lord executes justice for the needy and maintains the cause of the afflicted. You can cry out to the Lord in prayer. You can lift up your voice to plead for mercy.

In prayer, you have the invitation to pour out your complaints before the Lord and to share your trouble before Him. God can handle your frustrations and He can bring calm to your troubled waters. Don’t run from the Lord! Run to the Lord and watch how His mercy comes running to you!

Riding HIS Wave,

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

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Wednesday, April 22nd, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Mercy, Prayer, Psalms.
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April 21st, 2015

Making the Wise Decision

“And the men of David said to him, ‘Here is the day of which the Lord said to you, ‘Behold, I will give your enemy into your hand, and you shall do to him as it shall seem good to you.’ Then David arose and stealthily cut off a corner of Saul’s robe. And afterward David’s heart struck him, because he had cut off a corner of Saul’s robe. He said to his men, ‘The Lord forbid that I should do this thing to my lord, the Lord’s anointed, to put out my hand against him, seeing he is the Lord’s anointed.‘” 1 Samuel 24:4-6 (ESV)

The timing could not have been any better. David and his men where hiding in the inner portion of a cave and Saul came into the entrance of that exact cave to relieve himself. King Saul was in a most vulnerable situation and David could have easily killed him. Instead, David chose to simply cut off a corner of Saul’s robe. David told his men that he would not dare put out his hand against the Lord’s anointed.

After Saul left the cave unaware of David’s presence, David arose and went out of the cave to reveal himself to Saul and to feature the corner of the robe that he had cut off. Saul was deeply moved by David’s gracious act of mercy and reverence.

  • “He said to David, ‘You are more righteous than I, for you have repaid me good, whereas I have repaid you evil. And you have declared this day how you have dealt well with me, in that you did not kill me when the Lord put me into your hands.’” 1 Samuel 24:17-18 (ESV)

What life lesson do you draw from this powerful encounter? Perhaps we should learn to entrust ourselves and our future to the Lord’s care.

Riding HIS Wave,

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

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Tuesday, April 21st, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category 1 Samuel, Decisions, Saul.
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