Saints and Peter and Paul, Apostles
The Lord will rescue me from every evil threat and will bring me safe to his heavenly kingdom. (2 Timothy 4:18)
Acts 12:1-11; Psalm 34:2-9;2 Timothy 4:6-8, 17-18;Matthew 16:13-19
Wait a minute! This passage sounds a lot like today’s psalm: “The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear him, and delivers them” (Psalm 34:8). It shouldn’t surprise us, though. One thing Paul became very good at was taking a truth from Scripture and reworking it so that it reflected his experience. This is precisely what he did in today’s passage. Reflecting on his many years of preaching the gospel, he knew that even then, as his life was drawing to a close, God would continue to fulfill the promise proclaimed in this psalm.
Of course, this is not a magic formula. We can’t make God do something just by saying the right words. But it’s a very effective technique that saints through the ages have used to lift their hearts and minds to God.
Try this experiment. Take a Scripture verse that touches on something you’re experiencing, and then proclaim it throughout the day.
Does the beauty of the sunrise take your breath away? “The heavens declare the glory of God!” (Psalm 19:1). Going to confession? “Give thanks to the Lord for he is good, his mercy endures forever!” (Psalm 136:1). Looking for motivation? “I have the strength for everything through him who empowers me!” (Philippians 4:13). Preparing to take your spouse on a date? “They are no longer two, but one flesh” (Matthew 19:6). The possibilities are as broad and deep as the Scriptures themselves!
Proclaiming Scripture in this way can provide a springboard for meditation. It can draw your attention upward to heaven. It can give you a new perspective and lift your attitude. Most of all, it can help reshape your thoughts and bring you more in line with the mind of God.
“Heavenly Father, thank you for your word! Help me to proclaim it through my day so that I can keep my mind and heart close to you!”~WAU