Luke 6:45

The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart.  For out of the overflow of his heart his mouth speaks.

Notice that it is out of the overflow of the heart, the mouth speaks.  So a person could store up bitternesses, bad thoughts about someone, repressed anger, but when the heart becomes full, these things will spill out of our mouths.

How do we keep this from happening?  The answer is in the same verse – we store up good in our hearts. I looked it up in the Greek, and it is exactly as translated;” to store up”, but the definition is qualified by saying “store up for a special need.”  The man who stores up good things in his heart is the one who will speak good things in the time of need out of the overflow of his heart.  This is how I view personal Bible Study.  We are storing up the good ” things”, the truths of God, that we might speak them to those in need, both sinner and saint.

Luk 5: 4 and 5

When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out from shore.  Then he sat down and taught the people from the boat.  When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.”  Simon answered, “Master, we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything.  But beause you say so, I will let down the nets.”

This is obedience in spite of what Simon Peter’s experience had taught him.  He was weary and the long night had brought empty nets, but, he obeyed.  His reward was overwhelming, and abundant.  Then, in vs. 10 and 11, we read that they left it all to follow Jesus.  Then, Jesus said to Simon, “Don’t be afraid; from now on you will catch men.”  So they pulled their boats up on shore, left everything and followed him.

Like a missionary who leaves career and family ties and a salary to serve God and rely only on His provision – why?  Because Jesus called them to be fishers of men. Is  God calling you to follow Him in a great step of faith?

Luke 4:18 and 19

“The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor.  He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to release the oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”

Freedom for the prisoners and sight for the blind…this is freedom from sin and spiritual darkness.  Jesus will set them (and us) free from sin and spiritual blindness.  To release the oppressed – the Amplified Bible reads like this: “to send forth as delivered those who are oppressed (who are downtrodden, bruised, crushed and broken down by calamity”).  Jesus, as Saviour, heals our spiritually blind eyes, washes away our sin, and releases us to trust, to have peace inspite of adversity, and to experience joy, even when our circumstances do not change.

Luke 3: 3

He went into all the country around the Jordan, preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins.

John the Baptist was the announcer, the forerunner of Jesus, the Christ.  His job was to prepare the way for Jesus.  He was preparing the hearts of the people by calling them to repent.   Think  of our own lives when we repent before the Lord.  In those tender moments we are able to hear the Lord’s voice so clearly.  John’s call to repentance is the perfect preparation for the arrival of the Saviour.  John was leading them to Jesus.  Jesus would lead them to God.

Luke 2:10 and 11

But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid.  I bring you good news of great joy that will  be for all the people.  Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord.

The angel speaks to the shepherds of GOOD news of GREAT joy that will be for ALL PEOPLE.  Today a SAVIOUR HAS BEEN BORN.  How this news has been polluted down through time.  “Good news of great joy” is now considered by many to be a system of do’s and don’ts, a religion of rules and regulations.  For some it is seen as restriction of their personal freedom.  For others it is a part of their own all-encompassing religious philosophy.  But, just as God does not change, so His Good News does not change.

Being in full-time ministry for 30+ years, I have seen it over and over again – adults, teens, children.  It is still good news of GREAT JOY when hearts are changed through repentence, and embrace their Savior.

Luke 1:14-17

He will be a joy and delight to you(John the Baptist), and many will rejoice because of his birth, for he will be great in the sight of the Lord.  He is never to take wine or other fermented drink, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit even from birth. Many of the people of Israel will he bring back to the Lord their God.  And he will go on before the Lord, in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers to their children and the disobedient to the wisdom of the righteous – to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.  Parentheses, mine

Vs. 17 describes John the Baptist’s ministry at the Jordan.  He went before the Lord, not just to baptize and to herald His coming, but to make ready a group of people who would be prepared to listen, to learn, and to follow the Lord.  So…even before the signs and wonders drew so many to Jesus, there were those prepared by a change of heart.  They would see and hear what others could not because they had been turned from disobedience to the wisdom of the righteous.

The repentent heart – changed from disobedience to the wisdom of the righteous.  This is a precious gift from the Lord to His children.  Thank you, God, that because of the ministry of the Holy Spirit, we are able to see, to learn and to desire to walk in your way.

Psalm 90:14

Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love, that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days.

Maybe this is the key to having more “glad” days. Reminding ourselves each morninng of God’s unfailing love, then thanking Him in the evening for the ways He showed us that love during the day.

Having more glad days and singing for joy would be lovely.  This is a great season to start.

Psalm 89:9

You rule over the surging sea; when its waves mount up, you still them.

When I read this verse, I saw a great analogy.  When the waves or the storms of life threaten to mount up against us, we must remember that God rules them.  When tragedy or physical trials or emotional suffering wash over us, we must not despair because God rules over those things.  He is our Ark of Safety in any of life’s stormy seas.