Today's reading: Ecclesiastes 8:1-9; Romans 13:1

Solomon's wise message for us in Ecclesiastes 8:1-9 is to follow those who God sets in authority over us. "I say: Keep the king's command, because of God's oath to him" (vs. 2). This message of submitting to and following the laws and rules of our respective governments is present throughout the New Testament as well: Jesus telling the Pharisees that we need to pay taxes and "render to Caesar the things that are Caesar's" (Matthew 22:15-22); Paul's instruction that we must "be subject to governing authorities" (Romans 13:1-7); and Peter's instruction in 1 Peter 2:13-17 to 'Be subject for the Lord's sake to every human institution..." and to "honor the emperor."

What impact does knowing that our leaders and rulers have been placed in those positions by God (Romans 13:1) have on your attitude, thinking and actions? What are some ways you can (and hopefully already do) honor those who hold government positions-city, county, state, federal? Tami

More on Wisdom

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Today's reading: Ecclesiastes 7:15-29

It's not uncommon for me to say in a Bible study or a conversation with friend or someone who has asked me about being a Christian, that I sin every day. So when I read verse 20, "Surely there is not a righteous man on earth who does good and never sins," it caught my attention. Many times when I make the statement that I am a sinner, I get a strange look and/or the perplexed response "But you're a Christian." I love it when that happens because I then have the opportunity to explain and talk about the fact that although my sins have been forgiven through Christ's death on the cross, I'm still human which means I'm not, and will never be, "sinless" this side of heaven. However, as a follower of Christ, my aim is to grow in my relationship with God, and in so doing, be more aware of my sin and strive to sin less and less each day.

Was there a verse or passage from Ecclesiastes 7:15-29 that stood out to you like verse 20 did to me, and why? What's one thing you learned about wisdom from Solomon today? Tami

Today's reading: Psalm 102:1-28

Adversity, suffering, trouble and depression are a few of the words that came to mind as I read through Psalm 102. The psalmist is in distress, and in this emotionally low state is crying out to God. Yet even in his pain-filled condition, the psalmist keeps his eyes on God, drawing comfort by remembering God's sovereignty, eternity and promises.

What does Psalm 102 show about praying in times of adversity? How do you talk with God when you're feeling distressed or experiencing hardship? How does telling God exactly what's on your heart impact your attitude and thinking? Tami

Today's reading: Psalm 101:1-8

Psalm 101 gives us a look at a conversation between David and God where David tells God that he is committed to living for Him. But David doesn't just say "I'm going to follow You." Instead, he lays out for God some specific ways in which he is committed to right living. So we see a commitment to sing and make music that praises and honors God, a commitment to guard what David views, a commitment to focus his thoughts on God and honor His ways, a commitment to associate with and learn from upright and good people.

How often do your prayers include telling God specific ways in which you are committed to following Him? Take a few minutes to think about the things you do to ensure you are living rightly, and then talk with God about them. Tami

Today's Focus

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Today's reading: Ecclesiastes 7:14; Matthew 6:34

Have you ever opened your Bible to a verse that feels like it hits you upside the head? I'm guessing you have, and that was exactly my experience with Ecclesiastes 7:14 today.

"In the day of prosperity be joyful, and in the day of adversity consider: God has made the one as well as the other, so that man may not find out anything that will be after him" (Ecclesiastes 7:14, ESV)

My husband and I are in a season of adversity right now, and as I took in verse 14 it was helpful because it provided me with a much needed adjustment to my perspective. Here are the lessons this verse conveyed to me:

  • We will experience both prosperity and adversity
  • God is in control of every circumstance
  • We may not fully understand why we're going through our circumstances
  • It's not for us to know the future
  • We shouldn't take the future for granted
  • Not knowing our future keeps us dependent on God
  • We need to live in and for the present day rather than worrying about tomorrow and what "might be."

Thank you, God, for giving me just the perfect verse to minister to my heart, and refocus my eyes on serving You right where I'm at today!

What did God impress on your heart after reading and considering the words of Ecclesiastes 7:14? How did this verse impact your thinking, attitude and/or focus? Tami

About Me

Hi, my name is Tami Weissert, the P4 facilitator and the "voice" behind the blogs. I'm passionate about helping people grow spiritually and actively encourage Bible engagement through conference speaking and writing. I also served as co-host of the Back to the Bible radio program for over 8 years. A little about me. I'm married to Jeff, and we love scuba diving, playing with our 3 dachshunds and going to Husker football games. I also love growing orchids, singing and Diet Pepsi. I hope you'll join in the conversation as we read the Bible and grow together.

About My Blog

I'm passionate about engaging God's Word! And my blog is about just that--giving you opportunities to receive, reflect on and respond to Scripture. Each day you'll find a short passage as well as thoughts, challenges and application questions for you to think about and respond to. I look forward to interacting with you and learning together, so post comments as often as you'd like. You can even sign up below to get the blogs delivered to your inbox each day!

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