Devotion: Acts 13:22
Henry Blackaby is one of the most humble men I have ever met, and yet the most powerful pray-er and believer in, “Things impossible with men are possible with God.” Although not considered a dynamic speaker, this man after God’s own heart, delivers powerful messages with a gentle, quiet, spirit, and when he speaks, a holy hush comes over his audience. Honor for the Lord pours out of his mouth, and listeners know; this man has spent time with the One he is making famous.
David was a man after God’s own heart. Even as a young boy; He courageously slayed lions, bears and a giant named Goliath, with the strength of the Lord his God. The Lord entrusted David to the task of watching over herds of sheep and then as he grew, God appointed him over vast armies that would defeat every foe. David sought the Lord on every hand, in every circumstance, great and small.
Jesus longs for you to be a man or woman after God’s own heart, a mighty prayer warrior, a conveyor of truth to your generation. The Savior of you and the world is waiting to empower you on a daily basis, to do his bidding.
Spend time with the One who longs for you to have His heart, so that you are empowered to go out and fight for those He has placed in your life.
Devotion: Proverbs 25:11
Words can build up or words can tear down. “I hate you!” “You are so stupid!” “What is wrong with you, don’t you know better?” Freshly spoken words of betrayal, can take a lifetime to get over. Words that wound, wiggle their way into the deep recesses of a heart, imprisoning their captive.
Secretly, our flesh feels by holding a grudge, the offender becomes wounded. Truthfully, the heart and soul of the grudge bearer, is the one most effectively damaged. Jesus said, “To whom much is given, much is required.” We who have been given much mercy by Christ, must much mercy give in return.
Why do God’s children continue to carry the weight of sins committed against us? Rehearsing hurtful words from the past, allows the enemy of your soul, to steal, kill and destroy the joy for which Jesus died. Do not allow him to rob you of one more minutes’s peace. Choose instead, to rehearse the Word of God richly dwelling within your heart.
Take every thought captive to the obedience of Christ.
Devotion: Colossians 3:9-17
Putting on new clothes can make one stand taller, even walk more confidently, in the life to which he or she has been called. Whether it’s a new shirt, pants or skirt; one secretly hopes people will notice and compliment the new look. Before a man or woman can put on the new clothes, the old must be taken off.
Several years ago; my husband purchased a brand new, matching blouse and skirt, which I donned for the first time on a Sunday. Hoping this would be the outfit to turn heads, an acquaintance pulled me aside and said, “That color looks awful on you.” My spirit was immediately deflated and I felt like someone had dashed a pitcher of Kool- aide on my brand new outfit. I wanted to go home and put it away, forever.
In the same way, we must put away any lies or anger toward other people or negative self talk trying to escape the mouth God created for praise. Instead, choose to put on the new self, the self that is clothed in Jesus Christ, whose mercies are new every single morning. As brothers and sisters in Christ; we must don the love of Jesus, exhibiting compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience. When wearing these new “threads”, woven especially for Christ’s beloved, one can walk tall, practicing forgiveness on a moment by moment basis.
Take off your old clothes and put your new clothes on! You will turn the head of the One who matters, Jesus the Christ, as He observes you walking in Him.
Devotion: 2 Corinthians 5:1-9
Deep love for the man of my dreams,conformed this city girl, into a lover of camping. Every fourth of July, our extended family would pack up large tents and head to the beach. Cots would fill up these massive tents, with cousins, aunts and uncles, ready to enjoy God’s beautiful ocean shore.
One night, while all were sleeping, incoming torrential rains swept across the ocean and this once sturdy canvas dwelling began to leak. Well, more than a leak; it was more like buckets of water were dumped upon this once sleeping family. Some cousins fled to their cars; while remaining tent dwellers, groaned in their weariness of holding up the supporting pole. Although this tent was not destroyed, an experience like this, definitely tainted any romanticized view of tent dwelling.
Every soul dwells inside of a human body God refers to as our tent. Just as there was much groaning from those who were in the tent by the sea; there is much groaning, as God’s children patiently await our heavenly dwelling. God has prepared us for the torrential tribulations life will bring; by giving us His Spirit, as our supporting pole. No matter how soaked our earthly dwelling becomes, we will not abandon our tent, one minute before He calls us to our eternal home.
Rely upon the strength and power of the Holy Spirit to keep you and protect you, through any and all tribulation God allows into your life.
Devotion: Luke 5:2-6
I have shared with my readers regarding my one word, for 2014 being “follow”, based upon the scripture, “Take up My cross and follow Me.” This morning as I began my work, I heard the Lord say, “Follow Me and I will make you fishers of men.” I said, “But Lord, with all my fishing, I’m not catching any fish.” God in His gentle, quiet way, said, “Libby, put down your net,on the other side.” I responded, “I do not fully understand what You are saying Lord, but because you say, “Put down your net on the other side”; I will do it. Speak Lord, for thy servant is listening.” When He completes the rest of this dialogue, I promised to obey quickly.
I must ponder God’s voice on a regular basis. He always speaks through His Word, that is more powerful than any two edged sword. If I will but just listen, He will give me the next word from His Word. From the beginning He is the Word and His Word will not return void. I love when He dialogues with me. There is no other voice sweeter than His. To think that the Creator of the Universe would want to take His time, to talk with you and me; is beyond what we could ask or think or imagine, but He does.
Dialogue means having conversation with someone. God created you to praise and worship Him; for His honor and glory, but He longs to converse with you on a regular basis. Are you listening?
Devotion: Romans 12:9-10
When God asks us to prefer one another; what does He mean? He asks us to” love one another with brotherly affection, to outdo one another in showing honor.” Will you get a return on every investment, from every single person, upon which you have bestowed time and unconditional love? Will they love you the way you have loved them? That, my friend, is the unconditional part. The family, friends, neighbors, co-workers that God has ordained for your life, may or may not have the resources within themselves, to return the same unconditional love, that you have poured out upon them.
The Lord Jesus sees and knows. He experienced the same type of rejection. He asks us to let our love be genuine. Genuine love, loves with abandon and leaves the outcome to God. Every person He brings into your life needs to experience unconditional love, in spite of how they act or react toward you. We are to love others as Christ has loved us. Our human flesh does not want to respond this way, toward an ill behaved person. We may not have a clue, as to what this person is dealing with, physically or emotionally. It is so hard to choose kind words in place of the mean, hateful ones desperately trying to escape our word holes.
You see, my friend, if you will allow the Holy Spirit to stir up Christ’s investment in your heart and mind; goodness, kindness and gentleness will pour forth from your lips. You will have made a huge investment into the life of that struggling person. He or she may be struggling with anger, hurt, or rejection. You will not only have made a deposit into his or her heart but a deposit into your account in heaven’s bank.
Choose to invest goodness, kindness and gentleness into the lives of those God has sent your way.
Devotion: John 15:1-17
I just came back from a long week-end in the Blue Ridge Mountains. On Sunday we hiked up to beautiful Linville Falls, NC. I took pictures of naturally fallen trees, as well as those that had been cut down by foresters. The rings inside of each tree were revealing their hundreds of years old age. These trees, whether taken down by God or man, would no longer “bear fruit”.
If you abide in Christ, He will prune you continually, so that you will bear much ” fruit.” Although pruning is painful; it is necessary, in order for us to be one with Christ. When you and I are one with Christ, we will be known by our fruit. Are we exhibiting the fruit of God’s Holy Spirit; the love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control that our Jesus exhibits?
Tell the Lord Jesus you are thankful for His pruning.