Thursday 16 May 2019
The Daily Faith Builder will resume on Monday 27 May.
 
11 I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you. – Psalm 119:11
 
What is your favorite Bible verse or Bible story? What Scripture helps you through difficult times? Hiding God’s word in our hearts renews our minds, strengthens our spirits, and enriches our lives. The Psalmist memorizes God’s word to keep from sinning. We cannot keep ourselves from sinning any more than we can keep ourselves from getting hungry or aging. It happens! But God’s words in the Bible give us strength to withstand temptation, grace to cast our cares upon Jesus, and courage to do what is right. What Bible verse will you hide in your heart today?
 
Affectionately,
Ric
 
Wednesday 15 May 2019
“If you do away with the yoke of oppression, with the pointing finger and malicious talk, 10 and if you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, then your light will rise in the darkness, and your night will become like the noonday. – Isaiah 58:9b-10
 
Hunger fills our land. People hunger to be understood. The lonely hunger for friendship. The confused hunger for clarity. The anxious hunger for peace. The fearful hunger for safety. The impoverished hunger for economic and food security. In a world where finger pointing and malicious talk starves the spirit and spreads darkness, we can be the light of Jesus. We are God’s light each time we seek to understand, offer friendship, bring clarity, share peace, provide security, and give financial and food assistance. Kindness shared in the name of Jesus floods the darkness with God’s loving light.
 
Affectionately,
Ric
 
Tuesday 14 May 2019  
15 For this is what the high and exalted One says—he who lives forever, whose name is holy: “I live in a high and holy place, but also with the one who is contrite and lowly in spirit, to revive the spirit of the lowly and to revive the heart of the contrite. – Isaiah 57:15
 
Being right all the time is exhausting. Showing others why our point of view is superior fills us and others with weariness. Taking ourselves so seriously fills us and others with stress. The antidote to our overly serious self-righteousness is a spirit of contrition (a willingness to admit our shortcomings). When we admit that our way of thinking, doing and living is not the only way, nor is it necessarily the best way, we more clearly see the value in other perspectives as we make room for Jesus and for others.
 
Affectionately,

Ric

 
Monday 13 May 2019
And foreigners who bind themselves to the Lord to minister to him, to love the name of the Lord, and to be his servants,
all who keep the Sabbath without desecrating it and who hold fast to my covenant—these I will bring to my holy mountain and give them joy in my house of prayer. – Isaiah 56:6-7a
 
Have you ever felt like an outsider? Like you didn’t belong? It’s lonely and painful. Speaking through Israel’s great prophet Isaiah, God assures everyone not born into Israel’s faith (that’s us), that all who want to enjoy God’s love, rest in God’s care and find shelter living inside God’s covenant of forgiveness and grace, are welcome to make our home in Jesus. In Jesus there are no outsiders, just people enjoying God’s love as we enjoy being at home in God.
 
Affectionately,
Ric
 
Saturday 11 May 2019
Truly my soul finds rest in God; my salvation comes from him. – Psalm 62:1
 
In the midst of your Saturday chores and responsibilities please take some time to rest. Hear God speaking your name and saying, “Rest in me.” When we allow our soul to rest in God, our mind and our body are restored by God. When our soul rests in God we are allowing the Lord to refresh the core of our being. And that restoration spreads outward giving our minds renewed sharpness, our spirits restored balance, and our bodies rejuvenated strength. Resting in Jesus our God saves us from exhaustion.
 
Affectionately,
Ric
 
Friday 10 May 2019
11 The Lord Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress. – Psalm 46:11
 
Just as a turtle carries its protective shell wherever it goes, God’s protective presence goes with us. God is our fortress – who protects and cares for us and goes with us. We never step outside of the protective presence of the Lord. Wherever we go, there God is. In this midst of trials, disease, injuries to soul and body, and even death, we are safe in Jesus, whose power over despair, disease and death gives us undying hope and everlasting life. Jesus who loves us goes with us – everywhere.
 
Affectionately,
Ric
 
Wednesday 8 May 2019

10 He says, “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” – Psalm 46:10

 

Our lives are a constant flurry of activity. From early morning until nighttime we are on the move. Days evaporate as we cram more into our schedules than a day is meant to hold. Before the busyness of today takes hold, please take some time to be still. It is in stillness that we experience God and enjoy God. When we are still, we discover that things go on without us and ultimately everything depends on God. When stillness gives us this insight, we go through full days with a spirit that can experiences the calming peace of Jesus.

 
Affectionately,
Ric
 
Tuesday 7 May 2019
Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, – Psalm 46:2
 
Imagine watching mountains collapse and crumble into the ocean. Were it to happen we would think the world was coming to an end. There are times in our lives when it feels as if our world is ending. These times fill us with paralyzing fear. When your world is collapsing please remember that God, who is greater than the greatest mountain, is keeping you in His care bringing you through your time of trial. You are in the care of Jesus who, when the mountain of death fell upon Him, rose from the dead and ever since has been building mountains of life, hope and new beginnings.
 
Affectionately,
Ric
 
Monday 6 May 2019
This is what the Lord says: “Maintain justice and do what is right, for my salvation is close at hand and my righteousness will soon be revealed. – Isaiah 56:1
 
“Ricky, all you have is your name,” my Grampa Hanse told me many times. Our name is our integrity. Living out God’s unconditional love is all about doing what is right. Doing right is standing for what we know to be good, just and beautiful. Keeping our name is a commitment to offering God’s saving love to everyone. Righteousness is risking (and sometimes sacrificing) comfort for integrity. Doing what is right is living our faith in Jesus with a humble spirit that leads us to listen to, learn from and love all people – even those with whom we disagree. Such living brings God’s life-restoring love to all.
 
Affectionately,
Ric
 
Saturday 4 May 2019
 
17 Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.” – Luke 18:17
Childlikeness is a wonderful amalgam of wonder and dependency. Children accept that they are dependent upon grownups to supply their needs, protect them, care for them and love them. Children fill with wonder when opening presents, enjoying God’s creation and eating yummy foods. For us grownups, childlikeness is accepting that we are dependent upon Jesus to supply our needs, protect us, care for and love us. Being like a child is also being filled with winsome wonder that leads us to appreciate and enjoy Jesus’ love for us, the beautiful world in which we live and the abundant life Jesus gives us. Are we growing up in childlikeness?
 
Affectionately,
Ric