Quiet Time Coaching, Episode 84: “Leaving Yesterday Behind”, 2 Samuel 12:15-23

What have cans of dark fruit cider got to do with prayer and the past?  Join me today as we explore how to leave yesterday behind.

One of the reasons we pray each day is to help us make sense of the previous day’s victories and mistakes. We cannot go faithfully into the day ahead unless we have cleared away the spiritual “rubbish” of the previous 24 hours.

We take some inspiration from King David in 2 Samuel chapter 12 and reflect on the significance of leaving yesterday behind.

Please add your comments on this week’s topic. We learn best when we learn in community.

Do you have a question about teaching the Bible? Is it theological, technical, practical? Send me your questions or suggestions. Here’s the email: malcolm@malcolmcox.org.

If you’d like a copy of my free eBook on spiritual disciplines, “How God grows His people”, sign up at my website: http://www.malcolmcox.org.

Please pass the link on, subscribe, leave a review.

God bless, Malcolm

PS: You might also be interested in my book: “An elephant’s swimming pool”, a devotional look at the Gospel of John

Quiet Time Coaching, Episode 83: Psalm 5.2

“Listen to my words, LORD, consider my lament. Hear my cry for help, my King and my God, for to you I pray.In the morning, LORD, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait expectantly.”

(Psalm 5:1–3 NIV11)

“Hear”

His expectation that God will hear presupposes he has been done an injustice. 

“My”

  • Personal connection with God, “my King… My God”.

“Cry”

  • Cries for help are heard
  • “During the days of Jesus’ life on earth, he offered up prayers and petitions with fervent cries and tears to the one who could save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverent submission.” (Hebrews 5:7 NIV11)

“King”

  • Puts David’s own kingship into correct context.
  • Demonstrates humility and also understanding of his limitations.
  • His problems are not solvable by his own power. 

“God”

  • Elohim: emphasis on strength and power. 

“To you”

  • Rather than attack his enemies, and stoop to their level of behaviour, he takes the high ground and submits himself to God, committing the situation to him. 
  • Be careful in how we react to enemies – Proverbs 26:4-6
    • “Do not answer a fool according to his folly, or you yourself will be just like him. Answer a fool according to his folly, or he will be wise in his own eyes. Sending a message by the hands of a fool is like cutting off one’s feet or drinking poison.” (Proverbs 26:4–6 NIV11)
  • Bear in mind we are called to love our enemies
    • “But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you,” (Matthew 5:44)
  • And not to get distracted
    • “Sanballat and Geshem sent me this message: “Come, let us meet together in one of the villages on the plain of Ono.” But they were scheming to harm me; so I sent messengers to them with this reply: “I am carrying on a great project and cannot go down. Why should the work stop while I leave it and go down to you?”” (Nehemiah 6:2–3 NIV11)

Most significant phrase for me – “MY”…


“You’re my Friend and You are my Brother, Even though You are a King. I love You more than any other, So much more than anything.”    

As the deer pants

Please add your comments on this week’s topic. We learn best when we learn in community.

Do you have a question about teaching the Bible? Is it theological, technical, practical? Send me your questions or suggestions. Here’s the email: malcolm@malcolmcox.org.

If you’d like a copy of my free eBook on spiritual disciplines, “How God grows His people”, sign up at my website: http://www.malcolmcox.org.

Please pass the link on, subscribe, leave a review.

God bless, Malcolm

PS: You might also be interested in my book: “An elephant’s swimming pool”, a devotional look at the Gospel of John

“For the audience of one”, Quiet Time Coaching: Episode 82

“For the audience of one”, Quiet Time Coaching: Episode 82

My friend Stefan Wolmarans was slimming down his book collection this week and found two books with which to bless me. Thanks, Stefan!

One of them was called, “For the audience of one”, by Mike Pilavachi and Craig Borlase. I bring you a thought or two from the introduction and first chapter of the book.

As Mike says in the preface, “this book is written because I believe the Bible says that worship is the reason for our existence.” Worship is not a priority, but the priority. Again, to quote from the book, worship is “the highest priority of the human race.”

Quoting Richard Foster from Celebration of Discipline, “…the divine priority is this; worship first, service second”. Today we will take a brief look at Mary and Martha and refresh our zeal for prioritising our personal times of worship with, to, and for our great and loving God.

“As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him.She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said.But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!” “Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.””

(Luke 10:38–42 NIV11)

Please add your comments on this week’s topic. We learn best when we learn in community. 

Do you have a question about teaching the Bible? Is it theological, technical, practical? Send me your questions or suggestions. Here’s the email: malcolm@malcolmcox.org.

If you’d like a copy of my free eBook on spiritual disciplines, “How God grows His people”, sign up at my website: http://www.malcolmcox.org.

Please pass the link on, subscribe, leave a review.

“Worship the LORD with gladness; come before him with joyful songs.” (Psalms 100:2 NIV11)

God bless, Malcolm

PS: You might also be interested in my book: “An elephant’s swimming pool”, a devotional look at the Gospel of John

Quite time coaching episode 81: “A mystery memorial”

On this morning’s prayer walk I came across an unusual sight. A bunch of roses off the main path propped against a tree. How did they get here? What are they memorialising? I don’t know, but it reminded me of Biblical examples of people memorialising acts of God. The most profound of those for a Christian is the Lord’s Supper. 

Do you memorialise the acts of God in your life? If so, how do you do so?

Please add your comments on this week’s topic. We learn best when we learn in community. 

Do you have a question about teaching the Bible? Is it theological, technical, practical? Send me your questions or suggestions. Here’s the email: malcolm@malcolmcox.org.

If you’d like a copy of my free eBook on spiritual disciplines, “How God grows His people”, sign up at my website: http://www.malcolmcox.org.

Please pass the link on, subscribe, leave a review.

God bless, Malcolm

PS: If you would like some coaching in spiritual disciplines, look me up here

PPS: You might also be interested in my book: “An elephant’s swimming pool”, a devotional look at the Gospel of John.

Quite time coaching episode 80: “I have seen the Lord”

I find great spiritual benefit in the writings of David Adam. One of his books, “Tides and seasons”, is a collection of modern prayers in the Celtic tradition.

Today I bring you my musical setting of the prayer “I have seen the Lord”. You might like to find yourself quiet spot, close your eyes and meditate on the words of this song.

Please add your comments on this week’s topic. We learn best when we learn in community. 

Do you have a question about teaching the Bible? Is it theological, technical, practical? Send me your questions or suggestions. Here’s the email: malcolm@malcolmcox.org.

If you’d like a copy of my free eBook on spiritual disciplines, “How God grows His people”, sign up at my website: http://www.malcolmcox.org.

Please pass the link on, subscribe, leave a review.

God bless, Malcolm

PS: If you would like some coaching in spiritual disciplines, look me up here

PPS: You might also be interested in my book: “An elephant’s swimming pool”, a devotional look at the Gospel of John

The Sunday Sample: Episode 74. Another new song: “I have seen the Lord”

Buying a new keyboard seems to have brought out more creativity from within me.  I love the poems of David Adam. Here’s one from his book, “Tides and seasons: modern prayers in the Celtic tradition”. I’ve set it to music as a meditative quiet time experience.

I’d love your feedback. How could it be improved?

Do you have any projects of your own you’d be willing to share with me and this community? Come on everyone, let’s get bold and creative!

Please add your comments on this week’s topic. We learn best when we learn in community. 

Do you have a question about teaching the Bible? Is it theological, technical, practical? Send me your questions or suggestions. Here’s the email: malcolm@malcolmcox.org.

If you’d like a copy of my free eBook on spiritual disciplines, “How God grows His people”, sign up at my website: http://www.malcolmcox.org.

Please pass the link on, subscribe, leave a review.

“Worship the LORD with gladness; come before him with joyful songs.” (Psalms 100:2 NIV11)

God bless, Malcolm

PS: If you would like some coaching in spiritual disciplines, look me up here

PPS: You might also be interested in my book: “An elephant’s swimming pool”, a devotional look at the Gospel of John

“Who are you?” Quiet Time Coaching, episode 79

Who do you think you are? Who do you think God thinks you are? How do you reconcile those two views when they differ?

I read an article today in Premier Christianity Magazine which shed some light on these questions. It was written by Claire Musters. Check her out at www.ficm.org.uk.

She offers a number of phrases taken from Scripture that can help us to believe that we are accepted, secure and significant. As she said in her article,

“When I first encountered the “Who I am in Christ” list from the Freedom in Christ course, I was encouraged to read it out loud every day. Initially I cringed, as it felt like brainwashing, and yet, as I reflected, I realised that everything on it is biblical truth.”

You might like to try meditating on some of these phrases. If you do, please let me know what you learn and share it with all of us.

Please add your comments on this week’s topic. We learn best when we learn in community. 

Do you have a question about teaching the Bible? Is it theological, technical, practical? Send me your questions or suggestions. Here’s the email: malcolm@malcolmcox.org.

If you’d like a copy of my free eBook on spiritual disciplines, “How God grows His people”, sign up at my website: http://www.malcolmcox.org.

Please pass the link on, subscribe, leave a review.

God bless, Malcolm

PS: If you would like some coaching in spiritual disciplines, look me up here

PPS: You might also be interested in my book: “An elephant’s swimming pool”, a devotional look at the Gospel of John

Quiet Time Coaching Episode 78: “Call and answer”, Jeremiah 33.3

“Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.’”

(Jeremiah 33:3 NIV11)

Quotes are from the Celtic Daily Prayer (inspirational prayers and readings from the Northumbria community) published by Collins.

Please add your comments on this week’s topic. We learn best when we learn in community. 

Do you have a question about teaching the Bible? Is it theological, technical, practical? Send me your questions or suggestions. Here’s the email: malcolm@malcolmcox.org.

If you’d like a copy of my free eBook on spiritual disciplines, “How God grows His people”, sign up at my website: http://www.malcolmcox.org.

Please pass the link on, subscribe, leave a review.

God bless, Malcolm

PS: If you would like some coaching in spiritual disciplines, look me up on coach.me. 

PPS: You might also be interested in my book: “An elephant’s swimming pool”, a devotional look at the Gospel of John

Quiet Time Coaching, Episode 77, “God’s Remarkable Restraint”

A super-bright moon led me to contemplate the blend of power and compassion as twin aspects of the nature of God. What difference does it make to our devotional times that God has such power and such compassion?

“..what is mankind that you are mindful of them, human beings that you care for them?” (Psalm 8:4 NIV11)

“The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” (2 Peter 3:9 NIV11)

“it will be more bearable for Tyre and Sidon at the judgment than for you.” (Luke 10:14 NIV11)

Let me share with you what I learned while musing on these ideas today.

Please add your comments on this week’s topic. We learn best when we learn in community. 

Do you have a question about teaching the Bible? Is it theological, technical, practical? Send me your questions or suggestions. Here’s the email: malcolm@malcolmcox.org.

If you’d like a copy of my free eBook on spiritual disciplines, “How God grows His people”, sign up at my website: http://www.malcolmcox.org.

Please pass the link on, subscribe, leave a review.

God bless, Malcolm

PS: If you would like some coaching in spiritual disciplines, look me up here

PPS: You might also be interested in my book: “An elephant’s swimming pool”, a devotional look at the Gospel of John

Quiet Time Coaching, Episode 76, “Dadda Delight at the Dunstable Downs”

A Tim Keller sermon refreshed my spirit when contemplating the end of 2018 and the beginning of 2019. The focus is on the word “abba”, or, dadda!

“He said to them, “When you pray, say: “ ‘Father, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come.” (Luke 11:2 NIV11)

““Abba , Father,” he said, “everything is possible for you. Take this cup from me. Yet not what I will, but what you will.”” (Mark 14:36 NIV11)

“The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.”” (Romans 8:15 NIV11)

“Because you are his sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, “Abba , Father.”” (Galatians 4:6 NIV11)

Let me share with you what I learned while musing on these scriptures today.

Please add your comments on this week’s topic. We learn best when we learn in community. 

Do you have a question about teaching the Bible? Is it theological, technical, practical? Send me your questions or suggestions. Here’s the email: malcolm@malcolmcox.org.

If you’d like a copy of my free eBook on spiritual disciplines, “How God grows His people”, sign up at my website: http://www.malcolmcox.org.

Please pass the link on, subscribe, leave a review.

God bless, Malcolm

PS: If you would like some coaching in spiritual disciplines, look me up here

PPS: You might also be interested in my book: “An elephant’s swimming pool”, a devotional look at the Gospel of John