After the Lord thundered, sending the invading Philistines into a panic, the tables were turned and the invaders ran for their lives.
11 And the men of Israel went out of Mizpah and pursued the Philistines, and drove them back as far as below Beth Car. 12 Then Samuel took a stone and set it up between Mizpah and Shen, and called its name Ebenezer, saying, “Thus far the Lord has helped us.” 1 Samuel 7:11-12 (NKJV)
The word Ebenezer in Hebrew means “Stone of Help”. It was placed as a memorial to always remind Israel of the goodness of the Lord and the many blessings He gives.
We, too, have been recipients of countless blessings from the Lord. No matter what the world may deal us, God has promised to never leave us nor forsake us. He makes a way for us to survive any trial and then to thrive in the presence and power of The Lord.
When we turn to God in our troubles, He never turns away from us. His Spirit is always pursuing us, no matter where we may be. His victorious healing and deliverance may happen quickly or slowly, sometimes so slowly that we may not even notice it, but it will come.
When we look back over our life, we can see more clearly how He has delivered us through countless trials and challenges. His love and mercy for us are overwhelming. He is right there beside us, often expressing Himself through the loving hand or encouragement of one of His servants He has placed along side of us when needed.
When we take time to remember the many ways that God has helped us in the past, it gives us comfort and assurance that He will continue to care for us the rest of the way. We ask for His help, protection, and guidance to allow us to live joyful lives that will bear fruit to His glory and bring comfort and healing to others.
One part of John Newton’s (1725-1807) hymn, Amazing Grace, goes as follows:
“Through many dangers, toils and snares I have already come. ‘Tis grace hath brought me safe thus far, and grace will lead me home.”
We rest upon a “Stone of Help”, God Himself, who has guided us through many storms and trials thus far. He has brought us safely to where we are today, another milestone in our life’s journey. Jesus is with us, and will never abandon us when we turn our hearts towards Him.
6 Be strong and of good courage, do not fear nor be afraid of them; for the Lord your God, He is the One who goes with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you.” Deuteronomy 31:6 (NKJV)
A teacher named J. Vernon McGee has stated:
“Yesterday is a cancelled check. Tomorrow is a promissory note. Today is cash – spend it wisely.”
Lord help us to make the most of today, trusting You, living one day at a time with the peace and assurance of Your loving presence. Thank You for Jesus’ promise to never leave us nor forsake us. We pray this in His name, Amen.