Archive for May, 2013

The God Of All Hope

Friday, May 31st, 2013

TODAY’S VERSE

“I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.”
Romans 15:13 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
There is hope and then there is HOPE. At first it would seem that the difference would be the degree of our trust in Him. Little trust, little hope. Large trust, large hope. But as we read today’s verse we see it is not trust that makes the difference as much as what we have our trust in. Hope comes from the fact that we trust in the magnificence of God. Paul says that God is the source of our hope and that it is God that completely fills us with joy and peace. It is God that gives us His Holy Spirit whose power causes us to overflow with a confident hope. So today put your trust in Almighty God, the God of all power, the God of all love and let Him fill you completely with joy, peace and hope.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear Father, I pray that You would fill me completely with joy, peace and hope through the power of Your Holy Spirit. Help me overflow with a confident hope in You and Your love for me. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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True Transformation

Thursday, May 30th, 2013

TODAY’S VERSE

“Let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think.”
Romans 12:1 (NLT)
“Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes.”
Ephesians 4:23 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Our Christian life is a renewal process. We should be constantly growing in our relationship with Christ. This life of transformation happens as we constantly renew our thinking through the power of the Holy Spirit. He has given us the Scriptures so we can grow in Him and be transformed by the renewing of our mind. But we must seek more than simply intellectual knowledge. We must let Him penetrate our mind and heart. The Pharisees had a great knowledge of the scriptures but weren’t transformed in their heart. Paul explains that true transformation also comes through experiential knowledge. He writes, “I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will empower you with inner strength through his Spirit. Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong. And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God.” We are made complete with fullness of life and power as we experience His love. Today, let God renew your mind, thoughts and attitudes through His word and His love.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, renew me, transform me, change me more into the image of Your Son. Holy Spirit, teach me and renew my mind. Lord Jesus, make Your home in my heart. Help me be all You want me to be. In Jesus’ name I pray.
AMEN

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Really Love

Wednesday, May 29th, 2013

TODAY’S VERSE

“Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them.”
Romans 12:9 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Paul starts in the twelfth chapter of Romans pleading with us to serve God with all our hearts. He encourages us to present our lives as a “living” sacrifice. And then he writes, “In his grace, God has given us different gifts for doing certain things well.” He lists different abilities that God gives and asks us to act out on these gifts with everything we have. Whether it is prophesy, serving others, teaching, encouraging others, giving, leadership or being kind, we are to exercise these gifts with abandonment. And then he comes to the most precious gift of all. One that each of us can do. One that each of us is called to. We cannot say we know God and ignore what Paul says next. He writes, “Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them.” Love is the most supernatural gift of all. Supernatural because we cannot really love the way God wants us to without His help. All our efforts are pretending. It takes God’s supernatural presence to give us the strength, tenacity, and will power to love like He does. We are His instruments of love and as we “present our bodies a living sacrifice,” He will help us really love. Today, let’s stop pretending and start loving those God brings into our life.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I am such a poser. I pretend to love others and fall so short of the kind of love You want me to have. Please forgive me. Help me, Lord. Give me the strength I need to love others the way You do. Fill me with Your Holy Spirit so I can let Your love, love through me. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Christ’s Love

Tuesday, May 28th, 2013

TODAY’S VERSE

“Christ’s love controls us.”
II Corinthians 5:14 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
We can let a lot of things control us. Fear, anger, lust, greed, pride are just a few emotions vying for the control of our heart. Painful emotions are powerful motivators. Regulating them is a full time job. But Paul knew the secret to returning to joy from agonizing emotions. He let the love of God fill his thoughts. He called upon the love of Christ for mercy and grace. Surrendering to Christ brought him peace and hope. This love of Christ is able to the same for you. Today, you can choose what will control you. Choose Christ’s love.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear Christ, pour out Your love upon me. Fill me, guide me, direct me. Make me so conscious of Your love that I am under its control. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Remain In Him

Monday, May 27th, 2013

TODAY’S VERSE

“Yes, I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing.”
John 15:5 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Christianity is a way of life. It is so much more than church on Sunday and a few “quiet times.” God cares about our every moment. Our emotions, our thoughts, our actions. In his book, “Walking With God,” John Eldredge writes about our heart being central to the Christian life and that we are invited into a conversational intimacy with God. This is what Jesus was talking about. We remain in Him with our heart not our head. He remains in us as we are involved with Him in intimate conversation. It is a deep relationship, one that demands that we focus on Him. He is there. And as we remain in Him and He remains is us, we will produce the spiritual fruit that we were born to produce. Why? Because He made us that way! That is why Jesus said, “Apart from me, you can do nothing.”

TODAY’S PRAYER
Jesus, I realize that apart from You I can do nothing. Forgive me for cutting myself off from the deep intimacy that You desire. Revive my heart, I pray. Bring life back to my soul and help me remain in You. In Your matchless name I pray.
AMEN

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He Knows My Name

Friday, May 24th, 2013

TODAY’S VERSE

“I would not forget you! See, I have written your name on the palms of my hands.”
Isaiah 49:15-16 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
I am deeply moved every time I sing the worship song, “He Knows My Name”. It makes me think of today’s verse. The Israelites doubted the love of God and Isaiah reminded them that even if a mother forgets her own child, He will never forget them. In fact, Isaiah writes that our Lord has written our name on the palms of His hands. God knows my name? I am overwhelmed by the thought. How personal, how loving, how intimate. And yet I can’t help but wonder, “What else does God know about me?” He knows my situation. He knows my struggles. He knows my limitations. My fear and anxiety is no surprise to Him. He knows my anger and frustrations. He knows my weaknesses. He knows and loves me, but do I know Him? Do I? Do I know His name? Do I know Him as the God Most High, the God who sees, the all-sufficient one, the provider and the Lord who heals? Do I know Him as my banner and my peace? Do I know Him as my creator, shepherd and my righteousness? Today, take joy in knowing that the God above all other names knows yours.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, thank You for knowing and loving me. Thank You for knowing my name and caring so deeply for me. Help me know and love You more.
AMEN

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Overflow With Joy

Thursday, May 23rd, 2013

TODAY’S VERSE

“I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow! This is my commandment: Love each other in the same way I have loved you.”
John 15:11-12 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
We were meant for joy. Instead we settle for comfort. We look everywhere for it. It is at the root of addictions, greed and many of our emotional issues. We look for comfort because we do not have joy. There’s a difference. Now the Holy Spirit is the comforter. We need to be comforted but comfort is just the beginning. After comfort God wants us to return to joy from our negative emotions. Jesus said, “I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow! It is love that gives us joy and remaining in this love, even after negative emotions, that returns us to joy. Our joy comes through loving relationships, both with God and those He brings into our life.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, fill me with Your joy. The joy that comes through the deep and loving relationships I can have with You and those that You bring into my life. Help my joy overflow. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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The One Thing

Wednesday, May 22nd, 2013

TODAY’S VERSE

“The one thing I ask of the LORD—the thing I seek most—is to live in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, delighting in the LORD’s perfections and meditating in his Temple.”
Psalms 27:4 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
What is your “one thing”? We all have one. It may not seem like it but we do. But, you say, “I haven’t chosen anything yet.” Sure you have. By not choosing, you chose mediocrity. You have traded your precious life for a half hearted attempt at living, when all the while; God was waiting to give you life, life at its fullness. This is what David knew. He knew God was the “one thing”, the meaning of life, the ultimate purpose, what Jesus called “the pearl of great price” that when a man found it, “he went and sold all that he had, and bought it.” For David, that pearl was knowing God. He wanted to live in His presence, delight in Him and spend time meditating on all that He is. And God offers you the same thing. It is within your grasp. Today, choose the “one thing.” Choose to truly know God in all His wisdom, grace and love.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I come today to ask for the “one thing.” I desire, Lord, to know You. I open my heart and ask You to fill it. Help me delight in Your presence. Help me meditate on all You are. I seek You, Lord, with all my heart. Be my “one thing” I pray. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Heal My Inner Self

Tuesday, May 21st, 2013

Heal My Inner Self

TODAY’S VERSE
“Even if my father and mother abandon me, the LORD will hold me close.”
Psalms 27:10 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
We live in a fallen world and many of us suffer from early childhood trauma that has left us emotionally immature. It seems that we are constantly using negative ways to regulate our emotions. But we don’t have to be victims of our past. In His wisdom and grace, God has provided us with the ability to overcome childhood attachment issues through new adult relationships with Him. God designed us with the ability to bond with Him; whether it is in the moment of abandonment or decades later, when memories rise to the surface, He is able to hold us close and heal our broken hearts. Today, we don’t need to suffer from a painful past. We have the presence of the Holy Spirit, the forgiveness of Christ and the love of God the Father. As we spend time with God and develop a deep relationship, we will find ourself creating a new and liberating bond with God. This healing relationship with the Father will renew our mind and heal the painful memories and consequent beliefs that lead us to despair. Today, come to God. Let Him hold you. Allow His love to do a deep work in you.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, thank You for Your loving commitment to me. Thank You that You have not abandoned me but instead You love me and hold me close to Your heart. Do a deep work in me. Heal me deep in my inner self and give me the joy and peace that only You can give.
AMEN

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He Will Never Forsake You!

Monday, May 20th, 2013

TODAY’S VERSE

“I will never leave you nor forsake you.”
Hebrews 13:5 (KJV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
There are many promises in the Bible, but I think the one that is most precious to me is when He promises that He will never leave me or forsake me. It boggles my mind to think that God promises such a thing to me. I know that there are universes and solar systems. I know that there are billions of people. And with each person there are multitudes of situations that need God’s attention. And yet, He is God. In His sovereign magnificence He has declared that He will not leave me or forsake me. Never. What comfort. What hope. What joy it brings to my heart. No wonder this same author of Hebrews could conclude, “We can say with confidence, ‘The LORD is my helper, so I will have no fear.’” Today, bring whatever struggles you have, whatever fears, whatever guilt, whatever sorrow and lay it before God. Then hear Him say, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, thank You for Your wonderful promise that You will never leave me nor will You forsake me. Thank You for Your faithful love. Thank You for Your grace. Fill my heart with peace and joy, I pray. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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