Archive for December, 2016

The Lord’s Face

Friday, December 30th, 2016

TODAY’S VERSE
The LORD bless you and keep you; the LORD make his face shine upon you and be gracious to you; the LORD turn his face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:24-26 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
At first this just seems like a benediction that you hear after church on Sunday. A nice platitude to give you some hope throughout the week. But when you stop to really read this passage it is a tremendous reality that you need to really consider. Why? Because, believing this passage can change your life. It starts out stating that God wants to bless and keep you. What a wonderful reality. You can come to God knowing that it is His full intent to bless you. But then the author adds a very personal twist. He is saying that God wants to make His face shine upon you. This means that God Almighty is fully aware of you and is turning His face deliberately toward you so you can make full contact with Him. What an invitation. Today, right now, God has turned His face toward you. His goal is to be gracious toward you and give you peace. He is looking, will you look back? Stop now, experience the presence of the Lord.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, thank You that You have taken such a personal interest in me. I want to know You better. Please be gracious toward me, help me experience Your face shining upon me, and give me peace.
AMEN

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What Do You Really Need?

Wednesday, December 28th, 2016

TODAY’S VERSE
And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.
II Corinthians 9:8 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Need. That is certainly a relative word. We have taken the word “need” and have turned it into everything from a wish list to a whim. Larry Crabb addresses this in his book, “The Pressure’s Off.” He writes about what we really need. He writes, “Nothing wrong with desiring safe airplane flights and warm marriages and a decent income. But none of these things, none of our hopes for a “Better Life of Blessings”, represents God’s priority agenda – We need only to be safe from any power that opposes God’s agenda for our lives.” And what is that agenda that we need? Dr. Crabb shares three needs that God wants for us; radical forgiveness, supernatural love and spiritual might. The good news is that God can grant you these needs. Through His grace, God provides all of the forgiveness, love and might you will need in order to be involved in His good work. Today lay aside those “other needs” that you think are so important and ask God to meet your real needs of forgiveness, love and spiritual might.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I need You and Your spiritual provisions of forgiveness, love and spiritual might more than anything else in the world. Help meet my real needs today. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Hungry?

Tuesday, December 27th, 2016

TODAY’S VERSE
Then Jesus declared, ‘I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will never go hungry.’
John 6:35 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Have you ever been hungry? Have you ever had a craving for a certain kind of food? Hunger is a tremendous human drive. Jesus said that He was the “bread of life” and if we believe in Him, we won’t be hunger again. But He wasn’t talking about alleviating our physical hunger. Instead, Jesus is talking about another kind of hunger; a hunger just as real. It is a spiritual hunger, a hunger of the soul. Just like a physical hunger, you can have many soulful cravings. These craving come from the needs of our heart. You may have a taste for love. Many people have a hunger for inner peace, joy and happiness. But there are also hungers that are born out of unfulfilled needs like a hunger for recognition, fame or glory. There are more base unspiritual appetites too, like lust, greed and materialism. The good news is that Jesus knows what will satisfy our deepest needs. Today, hear the words of Jesus, “I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will never go hungry.” Come to Jesus. Feed on His teachings and the personal relationship that He offers to you. He is the only one that can truly satisfy your hunger.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, thank You for giving me a spiritual appetite. I really need You to feed my soul. I need Your bread of life to feed and nourish the deepest parts of me. I come to You now, dear Jesus. Feed me I pray.
AMEN

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Talk With God

Monday, December 26th, 2016

TODAY’S VERSE
My heart has heard you say, ‘Come and talk with me.’ And my heart responds, ‘LORD, I am coming.
Psalms 27:8 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
What a glorious invitation! There are two elements to an invitation that can make it special: who is inviting you and what you are invited to do. In both cases this invitation is extraordinary! First, it is God who is doing the inviting. David said that his heart heard God’s invitation. Have you? Have you sensed that call of the Holy Spirit to come and fellowship with God? He bids you come to Him. God desires your fellowship, but you must come. Second, we see that God has invited you to talk with Him! So many times we talk “to” God, not “with” Him. What kind of friendship would you have with someone if you did all the talking? That is not fellowship, it is not a relationship. God Almighty has asked you to talk with Him. You can share your innermost thoughts and then wait and listen to what He has to say. God wants to commune with your heart if you will let Him. Today, God has invited you to come talk with Him. Stop now and start a conversation, talk with Him, listen and let it begin a life long dialog.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, thank You for Your invitation to come and talk with you. Today I come to share my own thoughts and situation and to listen. Talk to me God, I want to hear from You. In Jesus’ name I pray.
AMEN

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Know Him

Thursday, December 22nd, 2016

TODAY’S VERSE
May God give you more and more grace and peace as you grow in your knowledge of God and Jesus our Lord.
II Peter 1:2 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Are you growing in your knowledge of Jesus Christ? Have you been spending time reading the Bible to know what He wants you to do? Have you examined His life so you can follow His example? Do you know how He feels about you? Do you see life, with all its people and situations, with the eyes of Christ? God’s design was that you have more than a superficial knowledge of Christ. It is His desire that you grow in what you know and experience of Christ. That you will understand more and more about the unending grace that He has for you. As you do, you will have more peace in your life. Today, spend time and get to know Christ better. Learn about Him as you learn from Him.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear Jesus, help me to know You better. Help me learn more about Your desires and passions. Help me know Your love, grace and peace. Teach me, guide me, instruct me I pray. Help me grow more and more in You.
AMEN

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Trust and Obey

Wednesday, December 21st, 2016

TODAY’S VERSE
Be on guard. Stand firm in the faith. Be courageous. Be strong. And do everything with love.
I Corinthians 16:13-14 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
What a “to do” list! Do you need something to do today? Try today’s passage. What a list, and such an important one for our spiritual vitality. What I am encouraged about is that God would not ask us to do something that He will not help us with. This is within our grasp. All we need to do is focus, ask God for His help and then be as diligent as possible. He will guide us. He will give us the strength and power to do what He has asked of us. Today, be on guard against spiritual apathy, attacks and adversaries. While you are on guard, stand firm on His word and your faith in what He has said and who He is. When trouble comes remember who God is and what He as asked us to do and be courageous in your attempt to be strong. Finally, if all else fails allow Him to work through you and do everything today with love! God is good and He will help you do what He has asked you to do. Simply trust and obey.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, thank You that You will provide all the help and strength I need. Help me to be on my guard and stand firm in my faith. I need Your help to be courageous and strong. Lord please help me do everything I do today with love. I ask this in the name of Jesus.
AMEN

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Working With God

Tuesday, December 20th, 2016

TODAY’S VERSE
Unless the LORD builds a house, the work of the builders is wasted. Unless the LORD protects a city, guarding it with sentries will do no good.
Psalms 127:1 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
God has created us to work in harmony with Him. We are at our best when we allow God to guide us and be Lord of whatever we do. Paul wrote, “For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” The Psalmist suggests that making plans and working toward goals without God is foolishness. It is wasted. Instead seeking God’s guidance, blessing and partnership on everything we do is the wise and prudent thing to do. How much of our lives will never reach their full potential because we do not let God work with us? Today seek God’s guidance, wisdom and partnership in all you do.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, lead me, guide me, direct me in all I do today. Help me join You in Your work so what I do today will not be in vain, but for Your glory.
AMEN

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Inner Strength

Monday, December 19th, 2016

TODAY’S VERSE
I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources He will empower you with inner strength through his Spirit. – 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. – Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God.
Ephesians 3:16, 18-19 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
How many times a day could you use strength? Pulled in every direction, we live under a lot of stress. Life can be difficult and so many times we feel too weak to do anything about it. Paul knew what weakness was. He knew what struggles and trial were like and so out of this great empathy he prayed for the church in Ephesus to have the same thing that got him through each day. He prayed that God would empower each one of the people with inner strength. Not just any inner strength. Not some false hope build on some slogan or certain steps to follow. No, Paul was encouraging you and I to build our inner-strength on knowing “how wide, how long, how high, and how deep God’s love is.” It is experiencing this great love that makes us complete. It is knowing God’s love in a deep and personal way that give us all the fullness of life and power that He has available for us. Today come to God. Ask Him to reveal to you how truly great His love for you really is. As He does, you will experience all the inner strength you need.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, give me the inner-strength that comes from understanding Your great love. Help me draw upon all the power that You have available for me this day. I pray this in Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Patience

Sunday, December 18th, 2016

TODAY’S VERSE
Being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience.
Colossians 1:11

TODAY’S THOUGHT
In his letter to the Colossians, Paul admonishes the Christians to “live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way.” He then tells them how. He says to exercise “great endurance and patience.” Endurance and patience pleases God. This is a lot easier when there is hope. When things seem to be going our way it is easy to endure. It is during difficult situations where all seems lost, where hope is nowhere to be found, that we must trust God and be strengthened in a way that only His power could accomplish. We come to Him, with all His glorious might, and choose to deliberately be patient and endure. It is an act of faith, one that is pleasing to Him. Today, trust God and His power, put your situation into His hands and choose to be patient and endure.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear Father, help me trust in Your power and might and exhibit patience and endurance today in all I do.
AMEN

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Patience

Sunday, December 18th, 2016

TODAY’S VERSE
Being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience.
Colossians 1:11

TODAY’S THOUGHT
In his letter to the Colossians, Paul admonishes the Christians to “live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way.” He then tells them how. He says to exercise “great endurance and patience.” Endurance and patience pleases God. This is a lot easier when there is hope. When things seem to be going our way it is easy to endure. It is during difficult situations where all seems lost, where hope is nowhere to be found, that we must trust God and be strengthened in a way that only His power could accomplish. We come to Him, with all His glorious might, and choose to deliberately be patient and endure. It is an act of faith, one that is pleasing to Him. Today, trust God and His power, put your situation into His hands and choose to be patient and endure.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear Father, help me trust in Your power and might and exhibit patience and endurance today in all I do.
AMEN

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