Why I Write These:
These are written in honor of my grandfather, Leon Milton Buttermore, who has a memory that I am envious of, and I hope that by doing this I am able to be the kind of man who starts to treasure the things given him.
Godly thought of the day:
Psalm 2:4-5 says: “The One enthroned in heaven laughs; the Lord scoffs at them. He rebukes them in his anger and terrifies them in his wrath”
The image of the Lord scoffing at these kings and rulers is an interesting one. We certainly don’t talk about God scoffing at evil, do we? But he does. Evil is so insane and so out of the contest against the Lord that he scoffs it. Like Elijah scoffing the prophets of Baal, the Lord has no problem laughing at silly rebellions. He is fully ready to dismiss them as trifles and then rebuke them as treasons.
This casual air towards our evil should terrify us because it highlights the magnitude of power that God has over things. Who are we dealing with? A God who shows no signs of concern, fretting, or even a furrowing of the brow over this evil is one we should not take lightly. Yet how great is it that even while I tremble, I am not finally afraid but confident before him?
That’s perhaps as amazing as anything else I can contemplate!
Favorite meeting of the day:
Living Sacrifices wins by default, but even if it weren’t the only meeting I had today I would still pick it. We’ve been taking the first 20ish minutes to pray at these meetings and it has been really rewarding. It’s a small group, but the guys coming want to pray and we’re praying hard prayers. Prayers for purity. God won’t look away from that. I know that’s a prayer he’s delighted to answer, though I may not know exactly what that will look like finally.
Hardest part of my day:
Just feeling super tired this morning. I was wrecked when I woke up. Luckily, I was able to catch a few short naps and still get my essential work done during the day.
Favorite moment of the day:
Hearing Yan pray this morning at our Tuesday morning group was awesome! It was a short prayer. A simple prayer. But it was good. And that he is praying at all is something I’m hopeful about.
What was the weather like today?:
Pretty nice. Not out in it much, except for a brief walk this evening and that was pretty shady. I love Arkansas for the trees. And the birds! The birds sing in the trees. God is exalted through nature, of that I have no doubt.
Most unfaithful moment of my day:
Just woke up really ungrateful to be up. I had to correct my attitude right away. I was tired and just wanted to roll back into bed. But that wasn’t the right way to go. I am grateful that God helped bring Scripture to my mind that caused me to push myself to rejoicing and by the time Living Sacrifices was over, I was still tired but energized and joyous in it!
What am I currently reading?:
Daily Bible Reading – Ezra 8-10
Church History by Eusebius – No reading for this today.
Addictions: A Banquet in the Grave by Ed Welch – He talks about the importance of living in the body of Christ, a powerful truth more people ought to realize. It is one of the chief means God bestows grace and real, tangible love to his people.
One thing he highlighted that I love and need to practice more is the idea that the church is not only where we learn to love, but also a place where we learn how to reconcile and to be loved.
On the issue of reconciliation, we shouldn’t just ignore everything that happens in church. We should learn to reconcile with others. It’s by this that we learn more about what it means and what it cost God to make reconciliation through his own Son. If we ignore that in the name of peace, we’re not training ourselves well. Now, we don’t need to get to the point where we’re running around reconciling for every little thought. But I think it could be much more regular than it should be.
But also learning to be loved is powerful. Not because you earned it. But if someone says something nice, or they do something kind for you, how do you learn to just respond with gratefulness. If you watch people, they’re really bad at this a lot more than they realize. They might make a self-deprecating joke or deflect somehow. Why? Why deflect the love being shown you? Learn to receive love and be transformed by it. Again, Christ wants you to learn what it means to receive love so that when you think of his love you won’t try to do anything to feel that you’ve earned it or falsely try assume humility. But rather, you can just take on real, genuine thankfulness for what he has given us.
On the Bondage of the Will by Martin Luther – No reading for this today.
Holiness by J.C. Ryle – No reading for this today.
What Is The Gospel by Greg Gilbert – Just reading this 9Marks book to sharpen my explanation of the Gospel. It’s the basic God, man, Christ, response layout but it is good and has some helpful things in it to be reminded of. So far I have just read about the God portion of it. The basic premise is that we are not our own. We are created. Therefore we are owned and God has a rightful place to demand our worship. A powerful truth that we can run by really quickly, but if we stop and stare at it we really should be in awe that we are a creature. A very dignified creature, but a creature nonetheless.
What was for dinner?:
A few Oreos
Song of the day:
Lord, I Need You by Matt Maher – We need God. I need daily reminders of this. Without this truth, I get arrogant and if I get arrogant I get stupid and if I’m stupid for too long I die.
Quote of the day:
“Envision the prize (1 Cor. 9:27). There will be crowns, rejoicing, no sorrow, no broken relationships. Yet these in themselves are not the prize. Like the Old Testament Levits, we get something better than land. The prize is Jesus, God himself. The battle is worth it.” — Ed Welch
The last line in his Addictions book, this was a great close and a great call to the fight. We’re always in the fight and we must not forget it. But unlike a soldier who can get weary, we always know our fight is worth it.
Prayer of the day:
Oh God, you have created us. Some of us you have called to yourself as your people. Rally us as your people, oh Lord! May we then proclaim your name so that all you have chosen to be holy and blameless might hear the word of truth, the gospel of their salvation. May they repent from their sin and believe upon the cross of Christ and the resurrection of him from the dead and his ascension into Heaven where he reigns at the right hand of the Father to save all those who believe in him from the judgment they deserved. Lord, might we be those who are quick to the fight. May we form battle lines. Lord, may we see that our battle against the principalities of this world never ends while we draw breath. Let us draw breath with grace and mercy flowing from the mighty stream that is your word. We know evil is but a trifle to you, oh God, and we adore you and worship you as the one who will put your foot on the neck of all who scoff at you and you will turn scoffers into subjects without hope. Oh Lord, we wish that fate on no one so may we be powerful witnesses to proclaim your Gospel to any who listen so that they may respond to you. May our lives and our purity be proof that the power of the message we speak is true and living and the power of your name actuallys transforms old men and women into new creations.