Devotional on Proverbs

2002 – Maine

Rescue the perishing
Proverbs 24: Rescue the perishing; don’t hesitate to step in and help.
Fanny Crosby wrote the missionary song that’s based on this proverb. Many a missionary service of years gone by has featured her song “Rescue the Perishing.” Would that the lives of God’s people feature it’s message in this day! The immediate assumption of the proverb is that there are those who are, indeed, perishing. In some cases it’s quite clear that people are in trouble. Their lives are unraveling and it’s plain that things can’t continue as they are. In other cases it takes insight to see what’s happening. People are living ordinary lives and pretty much keeping things together. However, spiritually speaking, they too are perishing. When Jesus stated his mission he gave it in terms of “rescue” saying he came to “seek and to save that which was lost.” As I consider this proverb, I’m challenged to join Jesus in that mission. “Rescue the perishing, care for the dying. Jesus is merciful, Jesus will save.”
Take Away: As followers of Jesus we need to join him in his mission to rescue the perishing.

Devotional on the Psalms

2001 – Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado

My story of rescue
Psalm 107: If you are really wise, you’ll think this over — it’s time you appreciated God’s deep love.
Each verse of this song tells a story of God’s love and deliverance. In one verse I hear the story of those who wandered for years in the desert. When they called out to God he rescued them. In the next verse, the focus is on those locked up in prison. Once again, God saves them. Another verse tells the story of sickness and I’m told that God “spoke the word” and they were healed. Then I’m led to think about sailors out to sea and caught in a mighty storm. As in all the other verses, they call out to God and he rescues them in the nick of time. The psalmist sums it all up by saying I ought to think about all this and appreciate God’s deep love for us. I don’t have a dramatic story like those told in this psalm but, in a sense, not having a story is a story of rescue in itself. Which is better, to have nearly drowned in my sin or to be rescued early in life and not have the ugly scars of sin in the first place? My story is also a story of God’s deep love.
Take Away: Sometimes the Lord rescues us from the disaster before it ever has a chance to happen.