DAILY DEVOTIONALS

Devotionals

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Going Against the Flow - Living Love - Week of July 9

Don't become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking (Rom. 12:2). The lack of courtesy in our society gives us more of an opportunity to stand out as loving people.

Going Against the Flow  Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you.  —ROMANS 12:2, MSG A coffee shop in Boston posts a sign near the cash register that says DON'T DO IT next to a picture of a cell phone with a red line through it. The coffee shop manager says the sign has cut down on the number of people who hold up the line while finishing a phone conversation before—or while—placing their orders. Common courtesies have become so uncommon that many companies now hire "etiquette experts" to teach social graces in the workplace. Employers see that disrespectful attitudes and actions reduce productivity and hurt morale. They want to make changes, such as prohibiting textmessaging in meetings. Simple etiquette reminders reflect a personal and professional respect that help people build stronger relationships. The lack of courtesy in our society gives us more of an opportunity to stand out as loving people. The Greek word ekklesia is the word most commonly translated "church" in the New Testament. It literally means "called-out ones." It describes people who have responded to the love of God and have been called out to become followers of Christ. Being called out means making the choice to love others in everyday ways. In the workplace and at home, courtesy is as simple as treating others with respect. Action Step  What is one habit you have that shows disrespect for others? ... read more

Live or Die - Daily Courage - July 8

If we live, we live to the Lord; and if we die, we die to the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord (Rom. 14:8). We may not have reached that point of commitment yet. But we can start by a willingness to live for Christ and for Hi

  from Day by Day with the Persecuted Church,  However, I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me - the task of testifying the gospel of God's grace.  (Acts 20:24) Open Doors Contact Person Somewhere in the Transylvanian mountains, in the little village of Livada, lived one of the great spiritual leaders of Romania, Traian Dors. He has spent more than seventeen years in prison because of his evangelistic activities. The last time he was in prison he was given so little food and water that he expected to die. So did the Communist authorities. Expecting his imminent death, Dors was sent home to die. To make absolutely sure that he would stop all his Christian activities, he was also sentenced to "house arrest". "But I need to see a doctor" he complained. His request was granted. "You can see a doctor once a week." "So I chose a doctor at the other side of my country" he told us, with a twinkle in his eye. "Even though I was very weak, I could still be taken to that doctor, enabling me to visit the brethren along the way." "Shouldn't you stop? You're an old man now, isn't there anyone else who can do that work?" The simple old man just shrugged his shoulders. "We are the grain of wheat that must fall into the ground and die. Only then will it ... read more

Her Story, My Story, Your Story - Girlfriends in God - July 7, 2014

I will be a Father to you, and you will be my sons and daughters (2 Corinthians 6:18). Make a list of characteristics of the perfect father. Now put a check by the ones that you have experienced in God.

July 7, 2014 Her Story, My Story, Your Story Sharon Jaynes Today’s Truth [God said]I will be a Father to you, and you will be my sons and daughters (2 Corinthians 6:18). Friend to Friend Once upon a time, not so very long ago or far away, a baby girl was born to parents who could not keep her. Neither parent was willing to release her for adoption, but neither was able to care for her. So while the legal system shuffled her case back and forth, the baby girl grew into a toddler in a foster home. Her care was certainly adequate, her physical needs were met, and she never went hungry. Her clothes, though not new, were never dirty. Her toys, though not her own, were always sufficient. This little girl was not mistreated or abused, and yet, in her heart was a hollow space. She desperately wanted what she had never had—a mommy and a daddy of her own. Only a few doors from the foster home lived a kind couple with a teenage son. The family wanted a little girl, the little girl needed a family, and the details of a trying and lengthy adoption were worked out. And while this little girl received a wonderful mommy and an adoring big brother, her relationship with her daddy was extra special. Ashley was two-years-old when she entered his life. She was thin, pale, and clingy. By the time the adoption was finally complete, she was ... read more