DAILY DEVOTIONALS

Devotionals

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Do You Live by Obedience or Preference? - In Touch - October 22, 2014

Obedience is sometimes hard, but the struggle and sacrifice are worth it.

October 22 Obedience or Preference Matthew 26:36-42 Every believer must choose whether he will live by the principle of obedience or follow his preferences. When a person commits to doing the Lord’s will, then every situation and decision is sifted through the standard of "God said it, so I’m going to do it—and that’s the end of it." He may complain, weep, or try to argue. But in the end he will be obedient, no matter what. I recall being invited years ago to interview with a church in Atlanta. During the entire road trip, I told the Lord that I didn’t want to move. I fussed and carried on a good while, but I knew Atlanta would be my new home. I didn’t like the idea, but the alternative was unimaginable: there are few things more unpleasant than living with the nagging anxiety that you missed out on something good. The Lord certainly understands our need to question, cry out, and petition Him for the strength to do what He asks. Hebrews 4:15 tells us that we have a high priest who can sympathize with us. Jesus wasn’t excited or happy about the cross. He grieved over the coming separation from His Father. Nevertheless, He was committed to following God’s will (Matt. 26:39). No one took Christ’s life from Him; He laid it down (John 10:18). Our lives are about fulfilling God’s purpose. Many people miss His awesome plan for them because they choose to follow their preferences. Obedience ... read more

How God Turns Your Past into Purpose - Encouragement for Today - October 21, 2014

Return home and tell how much God has done for you. So the man went away and told all over town how much Jesus had done for him (Luke 8:39). People can deny Christ, dispute Scripture and ignore prophecy, but they cannot deny, dispute or ignore God'

OCTOBER 21, 2014 How God Turns Your Past Into Purpose TRACIE MILES "'Return home and tell how much God has done for you.' So the man went away and told all over town how much Jesus had done for him." Luke 8:39 (NIV) As I sat in the church pew with my head bowed in prayer, I heard a voice reverberate so thunderously in my heart that it startled me. The voice was blaringly loud, as if it had been announced over the loudspeakers. I opened my eyes surprised to see that no one else was taken aback. All was calm. And so began my encounter with God. I felt God speak loud and clear a short message that held life-altering repercussions. Three powerful, commanding words: "Go and share!" I became overwhelmed with emotion. I was awestruck that God had spoken to me at all, but even more so at the three words I heard. Go and share? Go and share what? Then it hit me. Fear immediately overwhelmed me and I sank into the pew, trembling at what I thought God might be asking. I began to question God, "Surely You can't mean share my past, Lord. Surely You don't mean go and share what I prefer to keep secret." Yet, that is exactly what He meant. And I didn't like it. I didn't want to go, much less share. I didn't want to be transparent or vulnerable. I gratefully accepted His forgiveness and healing, but I wasn't ready to accept ... read more

It's Time for You to Start Confessing 'Good Things' about Yourself - Sparkling Gems from the Greek - Week of October 20

That the communication of thy faith may become effectual by the acknowledging of every good thing which is in you in Christ Jesus (Philemon 1:6). What kind of things do you say about yourself, Christian?

Week of October 20 It's Time for You To Start Confessing ‘Good Things' About Yourself! That the communication of thy faith may become effectual by the acknowledging of every good thing which is in you in Christ Jesus. Philemon 1:6 What kind of things do you say about yourself? Do you speak well of yourself, or are you hyper-critical of your appearance, your weight, your intelligence, your talents, your skills, and every other aspect of who you are as a person? I used to be so hyper-critical of myself that one day the Holy Spirit spoke to me and said, "How dare you continually talk so badly about yourself after the good work I've done inside you. Don't you know how marvelously I created you to be in Jesus Christ? Quit speaking so negatively of yourself, and start acknowledging every good thing that is in you." I didn't realize how badly I was speaking of myself until the Holy Spirit brought it to my attention. But after He spoke to me, I started noticing every time something evil slipped out of my mouth about myself. I was stunned to see how many times I did it! I became painfully aware that my own mouth had become one of my greatest enemies. With the help of the Holy Spirit, I made a decision to quit speaking such foul things and to start aligning my mouth with what God's Word declared me to be. Paul said we need to speak good things about ourselves! ... read more