December 22, 2011
“Yea, they turned back and tempted God, and limited the Holy One of Israel” (Psalm 78:41 KJV)
The children of Israel did not fulfill God’s plan for their lives because they did not believe in His willingness or ability to bring them into the Promised Land. Their unbelief LIMITED God!
We know that God’s power and ability is never limited. But God is a God of faith and for His promises to work, they must be activated by faith in the heart of the individual. These people limited God’s ability to bring His plan to pass in their lives because of THEIR unbelief.
As you reflect on your life and choices, think of how often you have limited God’s plan for you because you did not believe Him. Determine to believe Him for great things in this coming year. Don’t limit Him by doubting!
PRAYER: “Heavenly Father, I do believe. Help my unbelief! Purge my heart and soul of any doubt. Help me train my mind to believe You, no matter how impossible things may seem, in Jesus name I pray, Amen!”
December 21, 2011
“A vast crowd brought to Him people who were lame, blind, crippled, those who couldn’t speak, and many others. They laid them before Jesus, and he healed them all” (Matthew 15:30 NLT)
crippled – kyllos (kul-lo’s) = crooked (members of the body), injured, disabled; maimed or mutilated
In our world today, there are many “crippled” people. Some were born that way, while others have become crippled though bad choices they’ve made, or wrong things done to them by others.
Regardless of the reason or cause of your deformity, Jesus Christ came to “make the crooked places straight” (Isaiah 40:4; 45:2 KJV)
It doesn’t matter if your “crookedness” is physical, mental, emotional, or spiritual, Jesus wants to make you whole!
PRAYER: “Lord Jesus, here are the areas in my life that are crooked. I repent of my wrongdoing and ask You to take them and make them straight I pray, in Jesus name, Amen!”
December 20, 2011
“O come, let us worship and bow down; let us kneel before the LORD our Maker” (Psalm 95:6 KJV)
To worship God is to present yourself to Him as a living sacrifice (Romans 12:1), willing to obey Him in all things, at all times.
To bow means to show physical subservience or submission to the one bowed before. This is why so many Americans became irate when President Obama bowed before the Saudi King. It was an act, in essence, which demonstrated a perception that America was submitted to the Saudi Arabia.
To bow down, prostrate yourself, or kneel demonstrates an attitude of being a servant. That’s why Jesus knelt before His disciples as He washed their feet.
For some people it is physically impossible to kneel. But if there are no physical constraints, we would all do well to re-learn this practice.
PRAYER: “Heavenly Father, as I kneel before You, I submit every area of my life to You, and You alone. In Jesus name I pray, Amen!”
December 16, 2011
“But Thou, O LORD, art a shield for me, my glory, and the lifter up of mine head” (Psalm 3:3 KJV)
We all experience difficult times in life, and it is perfectly normal to become discouraged when trouble comes and stays for a while. It is discouraging when we’ve done all we know to do to resolve the problem(s), yet they remain, or worsen.
It is during these times of trouble that we discover where our hope lies. If we trust in our abilities and strength to work things out, we will become discouraged.
But for those whose hope is in the Lord, discouragement may come, but it cannot remain. For even as King David did when he became discouraged, we encourage ourselves in the Lord our God. He alone is our shield and glory, and the lifter of our heads. He will not allow us to remain downcast!
PRAYER: “Heavenly Father, in times of discouragement, I turn to You. I know that You will always encourage me. You are my strength and hope in times of trouble. Thank You for lifting my head, in Jesus name, Amen!”
December 15, 2011
“So we have stopped evaluating others from a human point of view. At one time we thought of Christ merely from a human point of view. How differently we know Him now!” (II Corinthians 5:16 NLT)
While stopped at a traffic light recently, a man pulled alongside me in a BMW. A beautiful vehicle, it appeared to be almost new. As I admired the car, I noticed a blemish in the paint near the convertible roof.
My first thought was, “Aw man, that really mars the appearance.”
How often do we use our flesh in the same way to examine others. The flesh is always drawn to the blemish, rather than focusing on the beauty.
As Christians, we are not to “know” one another by the flesh, but by the Spirit. The Spirit will always focus on the best in others. May each of us learn to look for the positive, and by grace, overlook the negative!
PRAYER: “Heavenly Father, help me put on the mind of Christ and always see the best in others. Rather than condemn them for their faults, help me encourage them in those things they do well. In Jesus name I pray, Amen!”
December 14, 2011
“If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you” (John 15:7 NKJV)
abide = to remain as one, not to become another or different, to wait for
What a tremendous promise: ‘We can have anything we desire!’ But there’s a catch – we must abide in Him and let His words abide in us. Then, our only desire will be to do His will and build His kingdom. We will not ask for anything against His will.
Are you still the same as when you were first saved? Are you still in that place of intimacy with Him. Do you remain spiritually alert, watching and waiting for His return?
If we cleanse our temple, we can say as King Solomon, ‘I have surely built Thee an house to dwell in, a settled place, for Thee to abide in forever!’
PRAYER: “Heavenly Father, I repent of all sin in my life. I fill my heart and soul with Your words. I know You will never leave me, so help me abide with You and never stray from Your words,. In Jesus name I pray, Amen!”
December 13, 2011
“The LORD is my strength and song, and He is become my salvation: He is my God, and I will prepare Him a habitation…” (Exodus 15:2a KJV)
God’s purpose for creating you was to fellowship with you. Just as we love our children and want to spend time with them, He loves His children and desires to spend time with us!
One of His names is Emmanuel, which literally means – God with us!
Since God is Spirit and cannot be seen or touched, for Him to be “with us: means we must provide Him with a physical body. We know that the Lord God will not dwell in an unclean place, so He allowed the blood of Jesus to cleanse us.
Now it’s up to us to follow Him closely and get rid of all the junk (sin) in our lives. He helps us do this by His Spirit within us. So we are co-workers with God, building Him a Holy Habitation!!!
PRAYER: “Heavenly Father, thank you for saving me by the blood. Now help me cleanse Your house by Your Holy Spirit, in Jesus name I pray, Amen!”
December 9, 2011
“He will regard the prayer of the destitute, and not despise their prayer” (Psalm 102:17)
Destitute = lacking something needed or desired; stripped
Have you ever been destitute? Are you at a point of hopelessness, stripped of the things (or people) you valued most? Do you lack things you need or desire?
I’ve got good news for you! Although it may not seem like it at the moment, God sees your troubles and listens to your prayers. This knowledge assures us that we will receive what we ask for in faith! (I John 5:14-15)
Regardless of the cause: an enemy; betrayal by a friend or loved one; or even of your own making, God hears your prayers. He is waiting for you to shake off your loss, rise up in faith and believe His promises!
PRAYER: “Heavenly Father, I release my past troubles, and forgive those (even myself)who caused them. I believe You hear my prayers and will restore double back to me, even as you did Job. In Jesus name I pray, Amen!”
December 8, 2011
“Give generously to the poor, not grudgingly, for the LORD your God will bless you in everything you do. There will always be some in the land who are poor. That is why I am commanding you to share freely with the poor and with other Israelites in need” (Deuteronomy 15:10-11 NLT)
During the Christmas season, we are reminded of the precious gift God gave to the world, His only begotten Son, our Lord Jesus Christ. Our focus shifts from primary concern for ourselves, towards our desire to give to others, sharing a portion of the bounty God has bless us with.
Not everyone is a Christian, and many Christians may be living below the level of faith you are walking in. This is why God commands us to share freely with those less fortunate than ourselves.
It is wonderful to give gifts to our friends and family, but God requires that we expand beyond our immediate circle. This year, reach out to those in need and God has promised to bless you!
PRAYER: “Father, thank You for all You have blessed me with. Lead me to those you want me to bless, in Jesus name I pray, Amen!”
December 7, 2011
“You have allowed me to suffer much hardship, but You will restore me to life again and lift me up from the depths of the earth” (Psalm 71:20 NLT)
You might be going through a difficult time right now, caught between a rock and a hard place, and it seems there’s no way out. But beloved, hold on to your faith in the goodness of God.
Jesus said, ‘In the world you will have tribulation. But be of good cheer, I have overcome the world!’ (John 16:33)
We tend to resist change, but one thing we’re assured of in life, things never stay the same. Circumstances always change. Only God never changes!
The Psalmist is saying, ‘I’ve gone through a lot of difficulties in my life, but I know You are Faithful and True! You will work everything for my good, and in the end, I will spend eternity with You!’
PRAYER: “Heavenly Father, I thank you that as circumstance change around me, I can hold to Your unchanging hand, knowing that ultimately You will bless me with prosperity, peace, and eternal life, in Jesus name, Amen!”
December 6, 2011
Jesus said there were many mansions in heaven and He was going to prepare a place for us. “A place” means the deed to a piece of land, the right to occupy real estate, or the right to be there!
Now that you own land in heaven, what type of home are you building there? “For every house is builded by some man, but He that built all things is God” (Hebrews 3:4)
Many Christians live lives of emptiness and frustration. They spend their lives and resources building an earthly home, when their focus should be on building their eternal home.
“You hoped for rich harvests, but they were poor. And when you brought it home, I blew it away. Why? Because My house lies in ruins, says the LORD of Heaven’s Armies, while all of you are busy building your own fine houses” (Haggai 1:9 NLT)
PRAYER: “Heavenly Father, I know that my days here are as a vapor, but I will live with You forever. Teach me to lay up treasure in heaven, so my home there will be a mansion, in Jesus name I pray, Amen!”
December 2, 2011
“Many of those whose bodies lie dead and buried will rise up, some to everlasting life and some to shame and everlasting disgrace” (Daniel 12:2)
A foolish person may say that death is the end of existence, that once you die, that is the end and there’s nothing afterward. Yet God’s word (and our own experiences) teach us otherwise.
The Bible is clear – “It is appointed to men once to die, after this, the judgment” (Hebrews 9:27)
The only way of escape from shame and everlasting disgrace is to accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. There is no amount of good work we can do to earn God’s mercy. Only the sacrifice Jesus made is sufficient to blot out our transgressions.
We’ll live forever – the question is, “Where?” Will we awaken in joy and eternity with God or in shame and the punishment of eternal separation?
PRAYER: “Heavenly Father, I accept what Jesus did for me, and call Him my Lord and Savior. Help me to be ready for His return, in Jesus name, Amen!”
December 1, 2011
“…The Lord has told you what is good and this is what He requires of you: to do what is right, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God” (Micah 6:8)
A spirit of condemnation is upon many of God’s people today. They walk with their head down, heart heavy with guilt, discouraged because of their many mistakes and failures.
The “Good News” is, we are forgiven! When we are born again, He forgives ALL (Col.2:13) our trespasses. This does not give us a license to continue sinning. Rather it is designed to remove the spirit of condemnation from us, so we can walk in newness of life.
His commandments are not grievous or difficult to keep. With the power of the Holy Spirit, we can do what is right. We can learn to show others the same mercy He has shown us, and walk humbly before our God!
PRAYER: “Heavenly Father, teach me to appreciate my salvation and walk in humility with a thankful heart Help me cast off the spirit of condemnation and heaviness, and put on the garment of praise, in Jesus name, Amen!”
November 30, 2011
“Let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of His return is drawing near” (Hebrews 10:25 NLT)
Certainly, the day of the Lord’s return is near. All the signs let us know that we are in the last days. The wars, rumors of wars, famines, racial and religious strife, economic stress, all let us know that His return is near.
One of the primary signs the Lord gives us is this: “…For that day will not come until there there is a great rebellion against God and the man of lawlessness is revealed – the one who brings destruction” II Thess. 2:3)
We’re witnessing the turning away from the true faith of our Lord Jesus Christ. Other faiths are now being exalted, while Christianity is being castigated and mocked. Don’t fall into the trap of Political Correctness. Keep the (true) faith!
PRAYER: “Father, I need You now more than ever. Keep me close to You and help me stay in fellowship with other Christians, in Jesus name, Amen!”
November 29, 2011
“I was forty years old when Moses…sent me …to explore the land of Canaan. I returned and gave an honest report, but my brothers who went with me frightened the people from entering the Promised Land. For my part, I wholeheartedly followed the Lord my God” (Joshua 14:7-8)
I’m sure you remember the story – 12 Israelites were dispatched to spy out the Promised Land. Only Joshua and Caleb returned with an encouraging report, while ten returned with a negative report.
Here Caleb states that he followed God with all his heart. How did he do that? By ignoring and denying the existence of the giants (his problems)?
No! He followed the Lord by declaring God’s Word over his situation: “Yes, there are giants in the land, but WE ARE WELL ABLE TO OVERCOME THEM!!! God had promised victory and Caleb looked past his circumstances, declaring and believing what God had said!
PRAYER: “Heavenly Father, I thank you that Your Word is True. My circumstances must line up with Your word, when I speak it in faith. Help me to follow You with my whole heart, in Jesus name I pray, Amen!”