DAILY DEVOTIONALS

Devotionals

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What it Really Means to Surrender Your Life - Powerpoint - August 20, 2014

And I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?” Then I said, “Here I am! Send me" (Isa. 6:8). All it took was one little shoe cobbler in England to change the world for Christ.

What it really means to surrender your life August 20, 2014 And I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?” Then I said, “Here I am! Send me.”  Isaiah 6:8  Over 200 years ago, a humble shoe cobbler by the name of William Carey stood before an austere group of ministers at a Baptist association in London, England. And he said to those men, “God has put it on my heart to reach the masses with the Gospel message and to take seriously the command of Christ to take the Gospel to the world.” Well, one rather pompous minister stood to his feet and said to Carey, “Young man, sit down. When God chooses to save the pagan, He’ll do it at His own time and in His own way.” But that would not suffice for William Carey. Bold in his faith, he went to India, led countless people to Jesus Christ, and sparked the modern missions movement! All it took was one little shoe cobbler in England to change the world for Christ. And he did it despite the fact that many people, even Christians, were against Him going. What a bold testimony of faith! What would your life look like if you served God with that kind of fervor? Where would you go? What would you do? Take a bold step of faith today and tell God, “Wherever… whatever… whenever… I’m yours!” SURRENDER YOURSELF TO GOD TODAY ... read more

What are You Drunk On? - Crosswalk the Devotional - August 19, 2014

And they all continued in amazement and great perplexity, saying to one another, "What does this mean?" (Acts 2:12-13). "These men are not drunk, as you suppose," Peter told the bewildered crowd at Pentecost...

  What are You Drunk On?  Shawn McEvoy, Crosswalk.com Managing Editor And they all continued in amazement and great perplexity, saying to one another, "What does this mean?" But others were mocking and saying, "They are full of sweet wine." Acts 2:12-13  "These men are not drunk, as you suppose," Peter told the bewildered crowd at Pentecost. "This is what was spoken of through the prophet Joel." The Holy Spirit had been poured out, and I've always found it fascinating that its effects could be mistaken for the pouring out of, shall we say, less holier spirits. To be sure, the Bible instructs Christ-followers to be "sober-minded" (Titus 2:6, 1 Corinthians 15:34). And there's honor and maturity in a steadfast, stoic reaction to life's trials. But then there's this fantastic scene in Acts that just fills me with tiny bubbles of delight. There's so much joy and power and overflowing involved with the Holy Spirit that, sometimes, well, we Christians just seem a little bit crazy. Flipped-out. Punch-drunk. Downright giddy. And who wouldn't like to see more of that side of us these days? Reflecting on this kind of Spirit-trusting, God-leaning fun reminds me of my three summers as a Christian youth camp counselor. The labor was hard but not in vain. The purpose was evident. The craziness was everywhere. "Go nutso-picasso," our Director would say, and show these kids that being a Christian isn't some droll, fun-killing existence, but something real, life-giving, sustaining, and joyous. And indeed ... read more

The Purifier - Invading the Privacy of God - Week of August 18

For he will be like a refiner's fire or a launderer's soap (Mal. 3:2). As I think of those two images, my perception is that purification would be a painful ordeal, something I would rather avoid.

Week of August 18 Devotional 34 The Purifier Malachi, the last of the writing prophets in the Old Testament, painted a double image of God in his third chapter. The "messenger of the covenant" in verse one refers to Jesus Christ and sets the context for his coming: "For he will be like a refiner's fire or a launderer's soap ..." (Mal 3:2 NIV).  First, Jesus is revealed as a refiner of precious metals. The hot fire removes all impurities from silver and gold. The second picture is of Jesus as a fuller. That's a launderer whose soap makes garments white.  The two metaphors illustrate the double thrust of the purpose of the coming of Jesus. Malachi stresses that it's time to get cleaned up. And we need to heed the message today as much as the people of Malachi's time did.  He comes to purify the faithful and to eliminate the unfaithful. After the purification, the worship of the chosen people will once again be acceptable to God.  As I think of those two images, my perception is that purification would be a painful ordeal, something I would rather avoid.  What would it take, I wonder, for God to make me "white like snow"? I'm not talking about the usual meaning we attach, giving us salvation and cleansing our hearts. This passage refers to what we experience after coming to Christ. It's what we theologically call sanctification, or setting apart.  The refining image sounds terrible to me. It's a ... read more