Today I want to talk about one of my favorite people in scripture. David is often called a man after God’s own heart. But David was not the first King of Israel. That title belonged to a man named Saul, who has his own story. Saul was anointed king over Israel, and the Lord’s spirit was upon him. But to make a long story short, he disobeyed God and the Spirit of the LORD departed from him and that is what brings us to the LORD seeking out another king. Back before David was even on the scene in people’s eyes, Samuel had told King Saul what the LORD would be seeking in a king.

“But now your kingdom shall not continue. The LORD has sought out a man after his own heart, and the LORD has commanded him to be prince over his people because you have not kept what the LORD commanded you.” 1 Samuel 13:14

Saul knew his kingdom was in trouble. He may have pushed it to the back of his mind (my thoughts) but I think those are words he probably couldn’t stop thinking about. Samuel grieved over what had happened with Saul and that he had disobeyed and what the LORD had revealed would happen. Samuel knew that Saul’s kingdom would not last. 

“The LORD said to Samuel, ‘How long will you grieve over Saul, since I have rejected him from being king over Israel? Fill your horn with oil, and go. I will send you to Jesse the Bethlehemite, for I have provided for myself a king among his sons.’” 1 Samuel 16:1

It’s safe to say a little time had passed between God removing his spirit from Saul to when the LORD chose David, or at least chose to reveal David as his next appointed king. Samuel, reluctantly because he was afraid of Saul goes to Bethlehem to sacrifice to the LORD so that he can anoint the next king of Israel. He invites a man named Jesse to the sacrifice as the LORD had instructed and tells him to bring his sons. Now Jesse brought all of his probably grown sons to the sacrifice and Samuel looks on them to pick out the one the LORD has chosen and the LORD keeps saying no, not this one, or that one, or that one. Samuel has to ask Jesse, if these are all of them and Jesse says well there is still the youngest. He doesn’t even call him by name and Samuel says send for him. In walks a very young David. I read that some commentaries say he could have been as young as 10 years old, some say 15. He would have been in that age range anyway. 

“And he sent and brought him in. Now he was ruddy and had beautiful eyes and was handsome. And the LORD said, ‘Arise, anoint him, for this is he.’ Then Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him in the midst of his brothers. And the Spirit of the LORD rushed upon David from that day forward. And Samuel rose up and went to Ramah.” 1 Samuel 16:12-13

Now in my mind before I really studied the life of David, I believe I just thought that God anointed him king and he became king. But a lot happened between David being anointed King by God through Samuel and David being anointed King by Israel. God chose David as his next King for Israel, but Saul was still sitting on the throne. Funny thing is David was brought into the king’s service and the king loved him at first. Saul was a troubled man, the LORD’s spirit had departed from him and he was in distress. Scripture puts it “a harmful spirit from God is tormenting you.” (v14) David was also a musician so he was brought in to play music for Saul so as to calm his nerves and Saul liked him. But soon, David killed Goliath, the giant Philistine who was tormenting Israel and then Saul started paying more and more attention to David. As did the people of Israel and David gained popularity among them. David became a man of war and he was successful and Saul turned on David. And before too long, David was on the run from Saul. Saul saw David as a threat to his throne and he wanted him out of the picture. 

Now we really get to the waiting game for David. You see a whole lot happens with David between him being anointed the next King of Israel by God and being anointed the next King of Israel by the people of Israel. Saul pursued him over and over and David literally hung out in caves and moved from place to place hiding out from Saul. It wasn’t until David was thirty years old that he actually became king. David waited approximately fifteen years from being anointed king to actually becoming king. 

“So all the elders of Israel came to the king at Hebron, and King David made a covenant with them at Hebron before the Lord, and they anointed David king over Israel. David was thirty years old when he began to reign and he reigned forty years.” 2 Samuel 5:3-4

Wow, what a waiting game that must have been for David. David was a writer of many of the Psalms. I wonder how many were penned while he was camping out looking up at the stars. I wonder how many were penned when he was hiding out in caves. Saul even unknowingly came close enough to David a couple of times that David could have killed him and taken him out. But David kept his integrity and he kept his eyes on God and looked to God for direction for his next steps. I am sure there were times David tired of the run. I can’t even imagine. But God found David to be a man after his own heart and that is what David continued to be. He was not a perfect man, God never calls us to be perfect. But he was a man of integrity, who kept relationship with his God even while he waited. 


In the book of 1 Samuel in chapter 1 there is a story of a man, Elkanah, who had two wives, Hannah and Penninah. Well really the main character of our story is Hannah, but Elkanah and Penninah have roles here too. You see Hannah wanted a child, more than anything yet she didn’t have any. Penninah had children. Now first of all a man with two wives is a cesspool for trouble, but for one to have something the other wants the jealousy, bitterness and tension that had to be in the room I bet was unbearable at times. See I know women, and I know a woman’s heart when she wants a child is tender. I am sure that Hannah’s emotions were on edge month after month, year after year, while she watched Penninah conceive, give birth and raise her children. And I am sure it didn’t help that Penninah would provoke all of those emotions in her. (v.5)

But every year this man, Elkanah would take his family, his two wives and children and would go to the city to worship and to sacrifice to the LORD. Elkanah trying to show how much he loved Hannah would give her a double portion of the sacrifice. But to Hannah that didn’t satisfy the grief in her soul over not having a child. Hannah was in a waiting room of sorts. 

“So it went on year by year. As often as she went up to the house of the LORD, she used to provoke her. Therefore Hannah wept and would not eat.” 1 Samuel 1:7

This verse alone shows us the wait as well as the anguish that Hannah felt over the wait. Waiting can be so hard ya’ll. I get it, I know. Oh how I have been there. We conceived our first child quickly, We tried for two years before we conceived the second. My husband went for four years without a steady income looking for a job. He did side jobs and consulting work for those years, waiting for a job. I’ve waited for a diagnosis for a loved one, that may have only been a few days but it felt like months. I’ve waited for the LORD to have mercy watching my Daddy until he took his last breath. I’ve waited for circumstances and situations to change and to get a breakthrough from the LORD. Waiting can be gut wrenching sometime. And I think sometimes we think that as Christians, we are supposed to put on our happy faces and look stoic and like we have it all together to show we have faith. But that is what I like about this story. I like that Hannah took it to the LORD and she poured herself out. 

“After they had eaten and drunk in Shiloh, Hannah rose. Now Eli the priest was sitting on the seat beside the doorpost of the temple of the LORD. She was deeply distressed and prayed to the LORD and wept bitterly.” 1 Samuel 1:9-10

I love that Hannah poured herself out to the LORD because that is where our help comes from when we are in the waiting room. And then Hannah asked Eli to pray for her as well. Eli when he saw her praying with such fervency assumed she was drunk. When he confronted her, Hannah poured her heart out to him too. 

“Do not regard your servant as a worthless woman, for all along I have been speaking out of my great anxiety and vexation.” 1 Samuel 1:16

Some translations say “I have poured out my soul before the LORD.” I love that! I can’t tell you how many times I have felt that I poured my soul out before the LORD. I quite remember being told when I was a child once that we were never to question God. That stayed with me for a very long time. And while on one hand, I know that God is sovereign and that His thoughts are loftier than mine, I do think it’s ok to pour your soul out and even to ask why sometimes. Sometimes I get the answer to a why being because I have not done something or that I am still harboring some thing He wants me to give to Him. And sometimes it’s just His sovereignty and His timing. When Hannah poured her heart out to Eli, Eli asked the LORD to grant her prayers. 

“Then Eli answered, “Go in peace, and the God of Israel grant your petition that you have made to him.” 1 Samuel 1:17

The next couple of verses may be my most favorite part of the story. 

“They rose early in the morning and worshiped before the LORD; then they went back to their house at Ramah. And Elkanah knew Hannah his wife, and the LORD remembered her. And in due time Hannah conceived and bore a son, and she called his name Samuel, for she said, I have asked for him from the LORD.” 1 Samuel 1:19-20

Yes, I love that the LORD remembered her, again just like Noah, not that He ever forgot her, but this language is here to just show a new action toward her. But I love even more that while Hannah was in anguish and prayed and cried and poured her soul out to God and the next thing she did was worship. Before her prayer was granted, before the LORD remembered her, she worshiped. You see, yes, I think it’s ok to pour your soul out and I think we can even ask how long, and the why of our situations, but I think once we have poured it out, we remember who God is and we worship Him for who He is not what we want Him to do for us. I think that is what Hannah did here. She was sad, she was anxious, she was distressed, but she also knew who her God was and she worshipped. 

So go ahead, if you are in a waiting room, get with God and pour it all out. If you want, also find a trusted friend to pour it out to and ask them to pray. But then, turn to Him and worship. He is worthy of our worship! Even in our waiting. 


The time had come. Noah had waited while he built an ark to see exactly why God had told him to build an ark. Oh God had already revealed that his plan was to destroy the living creatures of the earth through a flood because of the corruption and violence that they brought to His creation. But Noah did not know what rain would look like, he did not know where the flood would come from, he had simply been obedient. So he built the ark. But his wait had really just begun. Up to now, Noah’s wait was filled with something to do. 

In chapter 7 of Genesis we read that Noah had seven days to load his family and all the animals into the ark. I wonder what the people around thought when they saw the animals coming toward the ark and Noah and his family, packing in their earthly possessions. I wonder if Noah’s family were reluctant or did they fully trust Noah’s relationship with God. I wonder if as they were packing it in, if one of them, just one thought well he’s a little crazy but we will humor him for a little while. Then ~ 

“In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, in the second month, on the seventeenth day of the month, on that day all the fountains of the great deep burst forth, and the windows of the heavens were opened. And rain fell upon the earth forty days and forty nights.” Genesis 7:11

Picture this, Noah and his family have spent seven days packing the ark. They have led animals to their stalls, they have probably brought food to eat, they may have taken things that were important to them. And they entered the ark and the Lord shut them in, and the rains came. 

“The flood continued forty days on the earth. The waters increased and bore up the ark, and it rose high above the earth.” Genesis 7:17

Now we have been in a bit of a rainy season around here. In fact just a couple of weeks ago we had rains so hard that our lake rose so fast water got in some boathouses. Some were living spaces. I know that when we have seasons like we have had lately where it seems to rain every day, I get tired of it and while rain is a good thing, it waters the earth and makes our plants grow and we need it to survive, you can sometimes feel like you have too much of a good thing, can’t you? But can you imagine being on a boat and it rained so much that eventually you felt that boat lift off the ground and begin to float. I wonder if it was somewhat soundproof or could they hear the people outside as they started to panic. And it rained and it rained. 

“And the waters prevailed on the earth 150 days.” Genesis 7:24

Have you ever given much thought to the timeline of this part of Noah’s wait? In the Sunday school stories of our childhood, it all seemed to move a little faster. Maybe it’s the benefit of having lived a few years that the realization of the number of days that Noah and his family would have been in that boat would have felt like an eternity to them at the time. Maybe it’s having lived through a few waiting periods of my life, while I was waiting for God to act, to move on my behalf is what makes me realize the wait that Noah and his family had to live through. Also think on this, while they were on this boat there were animals, that were living as well, they were stinky and smelly, they had to be fed and cared for. Can you imagine the smells, and the sounds. And they had already been there 190 days, doing the same routines day in and day out with no sunshine. Do you think they felt depressed, do you think they may have felt forgotten? They weren’t. 

“But God remembered Noah and all the beasts and all the livestock that were with him in the ark. And God made a wind blow over the earth, and the waters subsided.” Genesis 8:1

Now this “remembered” is not like when we remember something that we had forgotten. God certainly never forgot that He had put Noah and his family on the ark. God sustained Noah and his family on the ark. But God is turning his active attention to Noah and his family again and just like God brought the rain, God is bringing the wind which will dry up the water. 

“and the waters receded from the earth continually. At the end of 150 days the waters had abated.” Genesis 8:3

Noah and his family have now been on a stinky, smelly, possibly noisy boat for 340 days. 

“and in the seventh month, on the seventeenth day of the month, the ark came to rest on the mountains of Ararat.” Genesis 8:4

We are at the tenth month and the tops of the mountains could be seen. Then 

“At the end of forty days Noah opened the window of the ark that he had made and sent forth a raven. It went to and fro until the waters were dried up from the earth. Then he sent forth a dove from him to see if the waters had subsided from the face of the ground. But the dove found no place to set her foot, and she returned to him to the ark.” Genesis 8:6-9

Then ~ 

“He waited another seven days, and again he sent forth the dove out of the ark. And the dove came back to him the evening, and behold, in her mouth was a freshly plucked olive leaf. So Noah knew that the waters had subsided from the earth.” Genesis 8:10-11

Oh can you imagine the hope that the olive leaf represented to them? 

“Then he waited another seven days and sent forth the dove, and she did not return to him anymore.” Genesis 8:12

If my calculations are correct, Noah and his family have been on this boat for approximately 400 days, when~ 

“In the six hundred and first year, in the first month, the first day of the month, the waters were dried from off the earth. And Noah removed the covering of the ark and looked, and behold, the face of the ground was dry.” Genesis 8:13

After days and days of rain and months and months of stinky, smelly animals, and probably darkness, and maybe some arguing and high tempers and frazzled nerves, Noah removes the covering of the ark and he sees the face of the dry ground and probably the sunshine. His wait was almost over. I do wonder about some of the things that may have happened on that ark during that very long year. I wonder what they did to pass the time. I wonder if they ever felt forgotten by God. 

I wonder if you have ever been through a very long year or maybe even years of waiting in stinky, smelly circumstances. Or are you there now? You are probably not sitting on a boat with stinky, smelly animals, but your circumstances maybe stinky and smelly just the same. While reading this and counting the timeline and thinking of the long days and the rain and the monotony of day after day on the boat might make you turn your nose up, please do not miss the most important line of the story. It came back in the first verse of chapter 8. 

“But God remembered.” Genesis 8:1

Just like God never forgot that He had put Noah and his family on that boat. God has not forgotten you either. I can’t tell you why the wind hasn’t blown over your circumstances yet to dry up your flood waters. But I can tell you this, that if you are His child that God remembers you! Just like He remembered Noah. We can be assured of that. 


I don’t know about you but it really helps me to hear stories of how other people have dealt with circumstances similar to mine. And I truly love it when I can find circumstances in scripture that will line up with mine. One thing to remember when reading scripture and maybe you find this easier than I do, or at least than I did for a very long time, is that the people we read about in scripture are just that. They are people. Real people that had real things happen to them and we have the benefit of having their stories the beginning, the middle and the ending right in front of us. Sure life was different then than it is now, but God was the same then as He is now. God never changes. He may have changed the way He communicates with us over the years. Truly wouldn’t a burning bush scare you to death anyway? But He is the same. People were still just people, with thoughts and emotions and failures and successes. I am glad that scripture gives us their stories. 

One of the ways though that we see people differently is that people, especially people in early Biblical days lived a lot longer than people do today. Take Noah, Genesis 5:32 tells us that Noah fathered Shem, Ham and Japheth after he was 500 years old. And then in Genesis chapter 6 we see that corruption was increasing on the earth. Except ~ 

“But Noah found favor in the eyes of the LORD.” Genesis 6:8

Because of the corruption on the earth God made a decision to flood the earth and to wipe out man, all except for Noah and his family, that is and well to start all over. So he instructed Noah. 

“Make yourself an ark of gopher wood. Make rooms in the ark, and cover it inside and out with pitch.” Genesis 6:14

I wonder what Noah thought when given these instructions.  First of all, he may have thought what exactly is an ark? Then, if he knew what an ark was he may have thought how am I going to get this ark to where it would float. See it had never rained on earth up to this point, so he couldn’t have supposed that is what it was for. God had not revealed that yet, according to scripture. If you read in Genesis 6 you will see that God gave some specific instructions in the building of this ark. So there is a realization here that this didn’t happen in a week, not even in a month, most probably it took more like a year or maybe longer, I did not find where scripture says that. 

So what you have here is Noah and his family living amongst a corrupt society, yet walking with God and doing things that God told them to do that most probably they were ridiculed and spoken of as foolish. People would not have understood Noah’s obedience and it didn’t get over with in a few days. What did Noah do when God told him to build the ark? 

“Noah did this; he did all that God commanded him.” Genesis 6:22

Noah walked in obedience with God even when he looked foolish. He walked in obedience to God even when he was probably enduring a lot of finger pointing, and ridicule. I don’t know if you’ve ever thought about that before. I know that as a child when I heard the story of Noah, it was like it all happened like it does in the story books, I never realized the waiting and probably the wondering of what all of it would look like. This story covers just a few chapters in Genesis but in real time it covered years of Noah’s life. Noah had faith in what God had told him before anyone even knew how to have faith. 

“By faith Noah, being warned by God concerning events as yet unseen, in reverent fear constructed an ark for the saving of his household. By this he condemned the world and became an heir of the righteousness that comes by faith.” Hebrews 11:7

So what do we take away from Noah’s waiting? First of all, Noah still did what he was instructed to do. God could have just given him the ark, and Noah wouldn’t have had to build it himself. God had already created the earth, he sure could have created the ark. But in Noah’s waiting, he worked. Sometimes I know for me, waiting on an answer can almost seem paralyzing. But waiting in faith is not just waiting it out and doing nothing. It’s doing what we know to do, doing whatever is in front of us. Oh I keep bringing the requests to God, for sure when I am waiting but I also ask the Holy Spirit to guide me through my day and I try to be obedient to do the thing in front of me. I wish I could tell you I was as obedient as Noah seems in his story. I know that at times, my waiting is with tears, and I hate to say it but sometimes even anger. But as I meet with Him every morning and pour my heart out to Him, I hope I get to the obedience, and then to the constructive part of the wait and just do the thing in front of me. 


“Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for him; fret not yourself over the one who prospers in his way, over the man who carries out evil devices!” Psalm 37:7

I have been doing a short study in my Youversion app called Rest for the Soul and this verse is quoted daily. I also keep having the word “wait” show up in other things that I hear and study. Ohh that is a little scary to me because I wonder what it is that God is telling me to wait for? I do often find that when I see or hear a theme coming up in my heart that it is often preparing me for something that will come along soon. But it could also mean that some of the things I am praying for now will find me sitting in a waiting room for the answers. I also have not had clear direction on which way to turn for these devotions or maybe I have? Maybe studying the waiting room is exactly which way I am to turn? 

As I like to do when I am studying a particular passage I went to my commentary to see what people way smarter than me have to say about it. First of all it is believed that David penned this Psalm in his later years. This would be after he had the benefit of having waited out becoming king. He had already gone through all of the running from Saul and he had become King. He had already enjoyed his position and was looking back. Maybe he was talking to himself, because we know that just because David became king did not mean that he was free of trials and trouble. Some at his own doing and disobedience and some at the doings of others. This could have been a pep talk for himself or it could have been counsel for someone else. 

This entire Psalm is meant to encourage its reader not to worry or fret over those who are walking in evil, or to get caught up in the worries of life. But to wait for the Lord to act on our behalf. We are to remember what He has done for us in the past and to look to him for deliverance. 

Even though I have a long history now of walking with the Lord, I also know how hard this waiting room can be sometimes. I know too that if I move away from my time with the Lord and do not have my focus on Him, but I am focusing on my worries and my fear how fast anxiety can get hold of my heart and I will feel as if I am spiraling in the thoughts in my head. 

This waiting, this being still, David makes it sound so easy doesn’t he? I think it comes with the benefit of history. Yes, but even then it can be hard. When you are waiting for that diagnosis, for that job offer, for that relationship to turn around, sometimes it can seem like an eternity. That’s why we must have Him as our focal point. Several months ago I was in the middle of a particularly hard time. I was watching someone I love have to bear the consequences of some bad decisions, and having to watch their wrestling with God over them. My heart was heavy and hurting for the situations at hand. I knew that the circumstances would have to turn one way or another, but at the time I was just not sure which way or another they would turn. For me, music plays a big part in steadying me when I am in a state of waiting which turns to worrying and fretting really quickly. So I found myself constantly singing in my head that old hymn. 

Turn your eyes upon Jesus, 

Look full in his wonderful face, 

And the things of earth will grow strangely dim

In the light of his glory and grace! 

My friends I don’t know what you are waiting for today. But what I do know is that turning your eyes on Him is the way to get through it. Won’t you do that today? Turn your eyes to Him and let the things of earth grown strangely dim and gaze on His glory and grace! 


Today as we wrap up our study on the names of God I want to recap all that we have learned. I hope that this study has been meaningful to you. I know I have learned so much and it has changed the way I pray many times.

When I am admiring a beautiful sunrise I praise ELOHIM who painted the pictures for me to see. 

When praying for healing for someone, I ask JEHOVAH RAPHA to heal. 

If I am afraid I pray for JEHOVAH NISSI to stand guard over me. 

When my heart feels troubled I pray for JEHOVAH SHALOM to be my peace. 

I am grateful that He is JEALOUS for me, that He is an all consuming fire in my soul. 

I am in awe that EL ELYON the Most High God, would even be mindful of me, yet He is! 

He is my ABBA FATHER, my Daddy when I need to just crawl into his lap and rest. 

He is ADONAI, my Lord, my Master and my Savior! 

When I feel like I am not enough, I know that I belong to EL SHADDAI that He is God Almighty, the all sufficient one!

When you pray for Israel, He is EL ELOHE ISRAEL, God the Holy One of Israel. 

He is EL OLAM – the Everlasting God!

The Lord of Hosts, the God of Angel Armies, JEHOVAH SABAOTH will fight for you. 

He is IMMANUEL, God with us and He is JEHOVAH JIREH, He will provide for me. 


JEHOVAH ROHI, The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want! 

JEHOVAH SHAMMAH – wherever you go the Lord is there. 

He is JEHOVAH TSIDKENU – the Lord is our righteousness, I would have none if not for Him. 

He is my SHOPHET – I am grateful He is who judges me. 

He is YAHWEH, Holy – I AM THAT I AM! 

He is Jesus! 

And in Jesus own words…

I am the bread of life. 

I am the light of the world. 

I am the door. 

I am the resurrection and the life. 

I am the way the truth and the life.

I am the true vine. 

He is Holy Spirit, He indwells in my heart, and guides my every step! 

I know that I know God in a different way after this study. I have soaked it in as we have studied and I hope you have too. I feel I know the Father’s heart differently than I did before. I know how to call on Him in different ways. The truth is, no matter how much we study for the rest of our days we will still just scratch the surface of who God is. My desire is to know Him better today than I did yesterday and to know Him better tomorrow than I do today. I love scripture and I want to keep learning as long as I have breath in my lungs. Thank you for taking this journey with me! 


Who is the Holy Spirit? Well to start with He is the third part of the Trinity, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. He is the Spirit of God. The Spirit of God was around before the days of Jesus physically walking this earth but He was not with all people. In Genesis before the creation it says that the Spirit of God was hovering over the earth. (Genesis 1:2) The Holy Spirit had roles to play during the Old Testament. For instance, King Saul had the Spirit of God upon him when he was first anointed king (1 Samuel 10:10) but after disobeying God’s commands the Spirit of God was removed from him (1 Samuel 16:14). But after Jesus came, He promised us that the Holy Spirit would be with us and would live with us, that he would indwell with us. The Holy Spirit’s roles changed after Jesus came, lived a perfect Earthly life, died on a cross and rose again. Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection fulfilled the laws of the Old Testament, that we could never measure up to, no matter how hard we tried.  Because of what He did for us on the cross, when we accept Jesus as our Savior we receive the gift of the Holy Spirit to be with us always.  

“These things I have spoken to you while I am still with you. But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.” John 14:25-26

While Jesus walked the earth with His apostles, these men and all the people, men and women alike looked to Him for teaching and for instruction on how to live. But Jesus promised His apostles that when he would no longer be with them physically that they would have the Holy Spirit to guide them. In fact in that passage it calls Him “the Helper”.  After the resurrection Jesus breathed on His Apostles and told them to receive the Holy Spirit. 

“Jesus said to them again, ‘Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, even so I am sending you.’ And when he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, ‘Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you withhold forgiveness from any, it is withheld.’” John 20:21-22

Then in Acts chapter 2 we see where they were all FILLED with the Holy Spirit. 

“When the day of Pentecost arrived, they were all together in one place. And suddenly there came from heaven a sound like a mighty rushing wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. And divided tongues as of fire appeared to them and rested on each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance.” Acts 2:1-4

I love this description of the apostles receiving the full power of the Holy Spirit. 

When I first started studying this I was a little confused. If the Apostles received the Holy Spirit back in the book of John while Jesus was walking with them after the resurrection, why did they need to be filled with the Holy Spirit as described in the book of Acts. And what I thought about was this. When I became a Christian, I received the Holy Spirit. He moved in, He came to live inside of me and is with me always, essentially whether I listen to Him or not, or cultivate this relationship with Him or not. He is there, I believe that. I think He pursued me before I became a Christian and wooed me to Christ and I believe the moment I accepted Christ, I received Him. But I also believe that even though we don’t get the mighty rushing wind and the tongues of fire (that would probably scare us to death anyway), we become filled with the Holy Spirit as we cultivate our relationship with Him. The more I study and the more I live for Him the more my life is filled with the Holy Spirit. The more I hear Him, guiding me and teaching me, comforting me when trials come, loving me, the more aware I am of His presence in my life. 

The Holy Spirit has many roles to play in the life of the believer. He seals us. Once He takes up residence in our hearts we belong to Christ and nothing can change that. He reveals truth to us as we study scripture, He helps us to understand what we are studying. He gives us gifts that are to be used for God’s glory. He comforts us in our trials and afflictions. He is our helper, our guide, our teacher, and he renews our minds!  I am so grateful that He walks with me and I pray that as I meet with Him every morning that I will walk in step with Him every day. 

Lord Jesus please don’t let me make a step without You, without the Holy Spirit directing my every move.


“I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinedresser.” John 15:1

Jesus was still speaking to his disciples in the upper room at their last supper together. Again, he is using imagery that would mean something to them when he is trying to teach them something. There would have been vineyards all around them, so they are no strangers to them. They would know the care it takes to grow a vineyard. They would know the way the vinedresser tends to the vines and what he does to them, even when they appear to be dead with no leaves right down to when they start bearing fruit and the way he has to support them as the grapes get heavy. They would know the imagery that if you cut the vine off from the source, there will be no fruit bearing and there will be no life to the vine. They also would know that sometimes it may appear painful as the vinedresser cuts away branches that even appear to be healthy but in doing so, there will be more fruit in the long run. They know that a branch cannot bear the fruit by itself, that it must abide in the vine. 

Abiding that is the key, not just getting up and reading a devotional, not church attendance, not listening to praise and worship music. Although those things are all good things and they help with the abiding, they point us to the abiding. Abiding is actually getting to the point that your thoughts have kingdom purpose in mind. Abiding is knowing that if something is  against God’s will for your life it is not good for you to pursue. Abiding is knowing He is with you every step you take and every breath you breathe. Abiding is knowing that you can’t take another step without Him. Abiding is living for Him, loving Him and dying to yourself and your wills and desires. There is a verse tucked in here that I have highlighted in my bible. 

“If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.” John 15:7

I wonder when I highlighted that verse. Was it when I was looking to Him to do something for me? Is it because I was looking for the secret to getting Him to answer my prayers my way? That is possible. But when I look at it today. I realize the reason we can ask whatever we wish and get it, is because of the abiding. Maybe I knew that when I highlighted it. I hope so, but probably not. You see when we are abiding in Him, we aren’t going to ask for something that is against His will. It is not possible to do so. If our thoughts are to bring glory to Him, which is what abiding in Him looks like, then there is no way our selfishness should creep in. If it is creeping in, we better check the door! Are my prayers outside of God’s will, are they just for my own selfishness? Or are my prayers for the good and the glory of His kingdom? There are times that my prayer is for something that may seem selfish and I am not sure of God’s will. If I am not sure of the direction I always ask Him to change my heart on the matter if that is what needs to happen. And then I try to be open to the change! Oh how I want/need to remain connected to the vine. 

“As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love.” John 15:9

Lord I want to ABIDE in your love. I want to retain the connection to the vine. I can’t unplug it from myself and plug it back in when I want it. It would, I would wither and die if that were the case. Help me to know how to abide in You! Lord even when I feel like I am being pruned, when you are cutting away things in my life, help me to remember that it is for your good and your glory! Amen! 


Tensions were beginning to run high. This was a dinner party that had not gone quite the way the disciples had thought it would. At the beginning of dinner they were probably still riding high on the waves of adrenaline. Earlier in the week Jesus had ridden into Jerusalem on a donkey to the praise of all the people. He had been teaching in the temple. Yes, there was that day He got angry at the merchants and the religious leaders were not happy with Him, but that’s nothing new. But at dinner, the tone changed. What’s this about Him leaving? And then one of us will betray Him? Where did Judas go anyway? And now He is telling Peter that he will deny Him three times before the rooster crows? Peter of all people! I mean He gets ahead of himself at times but he loves Jesus! I’ll bet the thoughts in their head were swirling. They didn’t know what to think. Where is Jesus going and what will we do if/when He leaves? We have all left our jobs and have followed Him everywhere? Where will we go? 

“Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me.” John 14:1

The disciples had reason to feel troubled in the midst of all that they had just heard. But Jesus was telling them not to have a troubled heart. He knew that this news would shake them up. But what He was telling them is even in the midst of trouble you can have an untroubled heart if you keep believing in Him. Jesus was telling them where to put their trust. This is sometimes so easier said than done. But it’s a word for us today too, not just for the disciples. There may be a diagnosis, a wayward child, a financial strain, family discord, natural disasters, all sorts of things and believe me when I say even when I don’t have something to be troubled about if I sit in my thoughts too long I’ll be troubled about not having anything to be troubled about and what might be coming next. But that’s not how Jesus wants us to live. Jesus wants us to live trusting Him that even when things seem to be falling apart around us they might be falling into place. 

Jesus is telling them where He was going and that He was going to prepare a place for them. The disciples still wanted to know how they would get there. Jesus told them you already know. 

“And you know the way to where I am going.” John 14:4

But how, how can we know? 

“Jesus said to him, ‘I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.’” John 14:6

Jesus is the way! He didn’t say I am going to show you the way. He is “the way”. Jesus is the way we get to heaven. But Jesus is also the way to the untroubled heart. Jesus is the way out of addiction. Jesus is the way to better relationships. Jesus is the way to hope. 

Jesus is the truth! When your thoughts are swirling, when you don’t know what to think and can’t make sense of your circumstances. When stuff is coming at you from all directions. Jesus can hold you through those circumstances. He is the truth! 

Jesus is the life! Even when your heart feels dead inside. When the heart has broken into so many pieces that you wonder sometimes how you keep waking up. When life hurts and hearts break, clinging to Jesus is the only way back to life. 

When Jesus told them, this He was telling them the way to eternal life with God. But He was also telling them how to have abundant life here on earth that will ultimately lead to the Father. Keep following Him my friends, keep your heart and your mind focused on His truth and let Him be the life to you! Here and evermore! 


Mary, Martha and Lazarus were good friends with Jesus. We see them a couple of times in scripture. We know that Martha was a doer and Mary was the one who just wanted to sit at Jesus feet and soak up all that He had to teach her. Well in this story Lazarus became ill and the sisters sent word to Jesus. They didn’t ask him to come. Possibly because they didn’t think they would need to. They were confident enough in His love that they just assumed He would. But when Jesus heard about it, He told the disciples that this would lead to the glory of God. He didn’t set to action immediately. Or so it appeared. He stayed where He was for another two days. Now two days may not seem like a long time when thinking about it. But if you have ever sat by someone’s bedside while they lay dying, and you were praying for a miracle that they would live. It can seem like an eternity. But to Jesus, the passage of time would just enhance the glory that it would bring to God. 

Finally after two long days, Jesus decides to go to Judea. The disciples did not want Him to go because He was a wanted man there. But Jesus went anyway. He knew that Lazarus had died and that it was time for the people to see the miracle. When Jesus arrived Lazarus had already been buried. In fact he had been in the tomb for four days. Now when Martha heard Jesus was coming she went out to meet Him. She immediately said to Jesus “Lord if you had been here, my brother would not have died.” (v. 21) Oh I am thinking of times I have questioned Jesus for not acting in the way I thought He should have, WHEN I thought He should have. Again, Martha and Mary had sent word to Him. They didn’t think they would need to ask Him to come, they just thought He would. So there was something in their hearts that may have been a little disappointed, something that may have questioned why didn’t He come. But I love Martha’s next statement. 

“But even now I know that whatever you ask from God, God will give you.” John 11:22

Martha was declaring her loyalty and her belief in who Jesus was in spite of her disappointment. She wasn’t asking Jesus to raise Lazarus, we see that after He tells her that Lazarus will rise again. She declares her belief that she will see him in eternity. But her “even now” statement is her declaration that she believes in Jesus regardless of what He was doing or could do for her. What’s your “even now”? Do you believe Jesus can act in your situation even now? Do you believe that even if it doesn’t play out like you wish it would that He can carry you through it, even now?  Then…

“Jesus said to her, ‘I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?” John 11:25-26

Martha declares again her belief, then she goes to get Mary, who had stayed behind in her grief even though she had heard that Jesus was coming. She had stayed where she was until Jesus called for her. When she knew Jesus would meet her, she got up and went to where He was. 

“Now when Mary came to where Jesus was and saw him, she fell at his feet, saying to him, ‘Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.’” John 11:32

When Mary poured her grief out to Jesus, He wasn’t stoic, He was moved. He wept with her. The words that are used in the original language here show that Mary was wailing, in her grief. Jesus’ was a quietly weeping, but the heart of Jesus was touched with her wailing. He still knew that the glory of God was coming but He still felt her pain right along with her. 

Jesus, Mary and Martha and a crowd went to the tomb where Lazarus lay. When they got to the tomb, Jesus heart was moved again. Then He says “Take away the stone.” (v. 39) Martha argued with Him, just a bit because of the odor. She still did not realize that Jesus was going to raise Lazarus right then. 

“Jesus said to her, ‘Did I not tell you that if you believed you would see the glory of God?’” John 11:40

I have always in the past looked at this statement as a rebuke in some ways to Martha. But I read it a little differently today. I don’t think Jesus was rebuking her as much as He was saying “don’t miss this!” You see Jesus would have done the miracle anyway. I think He acts around us all the time. But sometimes I wonder how much do we miss, because of our own unbelief? How much glory are we missing because we aren’t looking for it? Jesus was going to raise Lazarus and He didn’t want Mary, Martha nor the Jews surrounding them to miss the glory of God. 

“So they took away the stone. And Jesus lifted up his eyes and said, ‘Father, I thank you that you have heard me. I knew that you always hear me, but I said this on account of the people standing around that they may believe that you sent me’” John 11:41-42

He said that for them, He said it for us. Don’t miss this. Jesus is the resurrection and the life. He gave Lazarus His life back. Jesus is still resurrecting dead souls back to life. Don’t miss it! Jesus is rescuing, He is healing and He is giving new life to people who have made a mess out of their old life. Don’t miss this! Look for Him today, look for the glory of God. It’s happening all around you, you just have to believe you will see it if you look for it!