When this blog began three years ago, one of the first articles, “Names of God” talked about knowing Who God is and to Whom we pray. That list of “names” or aspects of God goes on and on as Ava Pennington most likely discovered when she researched and wrote Daily Reflections on the Names of God, published by Revell.
Why does this matter? As the Introduction states: “Every name of God revealed in the Bible shows us something about His character and His ways.” And “With each new revelation, it’s as if God whispers to us, ‘Come closer, My child. I have something new I want to tell you about me.’ The more we learn, the easier it is to trust Him and rely on Him.”
Most people have their own ideas of Who God is, but Ava’s book lets us know Who God says God is – names that, with meditation, draw us to look upward, inward, or outside ourselves.
For instance, the first devotional considers the name “Glory” and asks “Are You Ready?” as we look up to this aspect of God. The second devotional turns us inward to see if we’re “Missing The Point,” and the third devotional on “Glory” points outward where “It’s Not About Me.”
This up, in, and out view of each name of God provides a consistent format for the book, beginning with the name being addressed, the title for that particular devotional, a relevant Bible verse, a word on the subject at hand, a prayer, and a pertinent question to consider.
Unlike many one-year devotional guides, this unique format helps us to direct our focus, not on calendar dates, which have been omitted, but on “The LORD Who Heals” and each part of the Trinity: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
To give you an example of the wisdom and insight in each devotional, we look up to the name “Jesus” and ask, “How can I honor the name of Jesus today?” Then we look inward and see:
When we come to God “in Jesus’s name,” we are really saying, “Father, this is what Jesus would ask if He were standing here in my place.”
We’re then reminded how “Jesus never wanted what His Father did not want.” Then the devotional closes with a question prefaced by this brief prayer:
Heavenly Father, forgive me for the times I have come to You invoking the name of Jesus, when I really spoke in my own name.
This trio of devotionals ends with an outward word that says: “The last thing the enemy of our souls wants to hear is Jesus’s name, unless it is spoken with hostility or trampled in irreverence.” Therefore, we’re wise to pray in agreement with this prayer:
Lord, give me discernment to know how to speak
of my precious Savior today.
©2014, Mary Harwell Sayler, reviewer
Daily Reflections on the Names of God, paperback
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