Archive for October, 2009

Angels are watching over us

We have divine intercessors to help us always

From childhood I’ve heard the phrase, “angels watching over me.”

I realize now, though, that I haven’t adequately allowed that idea to help me as I’ve gone through life.

Yes, I’ve fervently trusted in God and His Word on most occasions. I could never have held up in my faith through multiple storms without the Lord’s help.

But embracing the confidence that God has a divine agent in my immediate presence at all times is what I’ve sometimes failed to do.

Not by intent, but instead by neglect.

“Forgive me, Lord.

“Thank you for sending help when I didn’t ask and even though I didn’t acknowledge it.” (more…)

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What father would not want to hear his kids say, “Daddy, what are four things that you’d really like me to do for you?”

It would be enough of a joyful surprise that the question was even asked.

It would be even more of a surprise when each of the father’s requests were fulfilled.

Wow, that would be a great blessing for everyone concerned!

The father would never forget the moments of fulfillment, I’m sure.

And the parent-child relationship would be stronger than ever.

Never forget that God is a father. He is our Abba Father.

Our divine Daddy. (more…)

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This is not an easy Morning Devotion to write, but it is clear that God wants believers to hear this stuff.

I hope that you aren’t prone to hurtful sarcasm.

I also hope that you aren’t given to divisive comments.

For both are contrary to God’s nature and thus qualify as sin.

You might be wondering why I’d even mention these unfaithful behaviors in a Morning Devotion. After all, my focus is always geared toward equipping and encouraging you, isn’t it?

There are a number of teachings in scripture that are not pleasant but the fact of their inclusion in the Bible indicates that we must learn and apply them.

Titus 3:10-11 and Proverbs 26:18-19 are such passages. (more…)

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Eager to do good deeds

Be eager to do good deeds -- Titus 2:14

One word jumped off the page of my One-Year Bible this morning — “eager.”

Titus 2:14 says that Christ gave Himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for Himself a people that are his very own, “eager to do what is good.”

I’m sure that you’re eager to save money on gas purchases or to use a buy one meal/get one free coupon at your favorite restaurant. But are you eager to do good things as part of your church involvement?

Are you eager to help people at your work to become more successful?

Are you eager to forgive others who offend or harm you in some other way? Clearly, forgiving others is a good thing.

Are you eager to start and end each day with sincere, focused prayer time? After all, nothing is more good than praying sincerely to God. (more…)

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Before the child was, love is.

Before the child was, love is.

Before my children were conceived, I was already anticipating their adult years and faithful service to God.

Actually, even before I married in my mid-20s, I was dreaming about the joys of seeing my future children live for Christ, participate successfully in society and have happy relationships.

I was graciously experiencing these things because of God’s mercy and I wanted my future kids to have the same.

This array of hopes for Jessica and Melissa have come true and I thank God daily for His gracious protection and provision for the girls.

It is a beautiful thing to see a passionately embraced vision actually come about.

Yes, it’s true that I’ve had a number of hopes over the years that did not turn out as expected.

But the most important hope of a Christian parent — a child who chooses to be a faithful adult — has happened.

And I’ve been blessed beyond measure. (more…)

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Toward the end of his prophetic ministry, Jeremiah faced a particularly tough persecution by the carnal King Zedekiah.

Yet, Jeremiah survived because of his faith and because of a godly man named Ebed-Melech.

Zedekiah had authorized the dastardly plan of some evil men who said Jeremiah should be lowered into a deep, almost dry well and left to die.

Jeremiah 38 describes this episode and implies that the prophet found himself in waist-deep mud and with no visible means of deliverance.

There is no indication as to how long Jeremiah was in that muddy well. There is also no indication that Jeremiah began to doubt his faith or complain that his preaching had “unfairly” resulted in this trial.

Would you have complained to God if you were in such a situation? I want to believe that I would not have done so, but I can’t know for certain how I would have reacted. (more…)

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What you do with money shows what you think about God.

It’s that simple.

If you believe that God keeps promises, you won’t struggle with the torment of material selfishness.

Instead, your faith will give you comfort when you give to the Lord’s work at the level that Jesus taught — the tithe (Matt. 23:23).

Since I’m not your home church pastor, you know that I’m not sharing this topic as a means to boost my paycheck.

Actually, I’m addressing this topic today because of my desire to see you become a more fruitful supporter of ministry so that God will receive more worship as more people become disciples, so that you’ll receive more abundant blessings from God as He resupplies your earthly needs AND so you’ll have greater blessings in heaven.

Yes, that’s a big desire. But we serve an unfathomably big God. (more…)

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