GOD –INSTANCES                                              Psalm 48:1-14

Great is the Lord, and most worthy of praise,
    in the city of our God, his holy mountain.

Beautiful in its loftiness,
    the joy of the whole earth,
like the heights of Zaphon[b] is Mount Zion,
    the city of the Great King.
God is in her citadels;
    he has shown himself to be her fortress.

When the kings joined forces,
    when they advanced together,
they saw her and were astounded;
    they fled in terror.
Trembling seized them there,
    pain like that of a woman in labor.
You destroyed them like ships of Tarshish
    shattered by an east wind.

As we have heard,
    so we have seen
in the city of the Lord Almighty,
    in the city of our God:
God makes her secure

Within your temple, O God,
    we meditate on your unfailing love.
10 Like your name, O God,
    your praise reaches to the ends of the earth;
    your right hand is filled with righteousness.
11 Mount Zion rejoices,
    the villages of Judah are glad
    because of your judgments.

12 Walk about Zion, go around her,
    count her towers,
13 consider well her ramparts,
    view her citadels,
that you may tell of them
    to the next generation.

14 For this God is our God for ever and ever;
    he will be our guide even to the end.
Psalm 48:1-14

Coincidences are common enough and happen equally to those who have no interest in the things of God. Yet in certain circumstances which many would explain as coincidences, the guidance of God is clear. Some call them God-instances. Here’s an example. In the nineteenth century a little waif asked to be allowed to stay after an evening’s teaching at a Ragged School. Finding he had no home, the teacher at the school persuaded the boy to show him where he and his friends roof lay eleven boys, some huddled together for warmth. The man told his biographer: before morning came, I knew I belonged to those boys. His name was Dr Thomas Barnardo (referred earlier) who went on to found the well-known homes for orphans. In what some might consider pure coincidence, divine guidance took place, because through this event the doctor’s eyes were opened to see an urgent need. It’s amazing how all around us there are needs which we notice with our eyes, yet do not really see. There comes a moment, however, when it seems as if the scales fall away, and the needs take on a perspective of which we were previously unaware.

Dick Sheppard, a famous evangelist, once said, Christianity does not consist in abstaining from doing things no gentleman would think of doing, but in doing things that are unlikely to occur to anyone who is not in touch with the Spirit of Christ. By bringing you face to face with a need or an opportunity, the Spirit will quicken your imagination and create a concern in your heart from which you cannot escape. When that happens, it is almost certain that you are being guided.

PRAYER LINE: O God, opened my eyes to see all needs, but particularly the ones You want me to see. May I be guided into something that takes up all my energy, my faith, and my love. Lead me on – I will follow. In Jesus’ name. Amen. (TWFT) (EDWJ)

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