God Shut

There are moments in life when it can feel like you are doing everything. As a mother, I know a lot about carrying the load. Sometimes I go from chore to chore and forget to finish one before getting to the next. I often feel like a taxi driver. I actually have a bag filled with all I need so no matter where I am at, I’ll have what is needed for work or church or the kids’ school events. Sometimes it can feel like you are doing everything alone. Sometimes it can feel like you are in charge of making things finish up okay. You consider it your job to make it all come to success.

In Genesis 5, we read about Noah and the flood. God commands Noah to build this ark and to gather all these animals. It was a huge undertaking placed upon the shoulders of one man and his family. They worked hard for decades to build the ark and many years later they got everyone inside the ark. The Bible says he did everything that God commanded. He was faithful over many, many years. Then what happens? We read in Genesis 7, God shut the door behind him. God shut the door. God protected him and his family. God kept His promise. God finished it. The door needed closed from the outside. Only God could get the job done.

If you are following God’s plan for your life, don’t get discouraged. No matter what He has called you to do in life, He is going to ensure it is finished. You follow His commands and He will keep His promise. You follow the plan, you follow His will, and He will finish it. He sees things to completion. Every time. There are moments that we are following the path He has us on and we become doubtful—we don’t see the finish line. We worry. We lose focus. We don’t see the numbers. We don’t see the fruit. We don’t see what we think we should see. We forget that God finishes. Today, remember that He is in control of the completion of the great work He called you to begin. Each step you take, He is with you and He will see you to the finish!

I have been reading The Message 100: The Story of God in Sequence by Eugene Peterson. I am grateful for the opportunity to review this new release from NavPress. I received this Bible free for review thanks to Tyndale House Publishers. I have read The Message (NavPress) twice and I have read the NLT Chronological Life Application Study Bible (Tyndale) as well, so I was eager to dig into the Message 100 to read this new version.

I am enjoying the chronological layout with the trusted paraphrase from Eugene Peterson. Reading in this order allows for a deeper understanding of the Bible, but written at a level that builds bridges for any reading level. It is a pure pleasure being able to sit and read God’s Word in the evening. During a recent message I preached, I recommended this new Bible, because I know that the Message paraphrase is a great translation to read along with a daily reading Bible. I always recommend having a few different translations to read for a deeper understanding. A chronological Bible is a blessing because it helps the reader to see things in an order that is not easy to understand when not in sequence.

The Message can be understood by any type of reader. This new Bible displays the verse numbers so you can look to your daily reading Bible for further study. As well, there is a guide to show where the books can be found as the order is chronological. The 100 readings are designed for a great progression through the books, without any loss to the message of the Gospel. The Bible allows for anyone to encounter Jesus and be moved by how He reveals Himself to us through His Word. There is plenty of room to write in the margins of this Bible as the Spirit leads.


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