March 6, 2018 at 9:36 am #46005
6th March, 2018
Good morning ladies and gentlemen. How ‘s your week coming along? Today’s devotional is here.
Blinded by Comparison
“We do not dare to classify or compare ourselves with some who commend themselves. When they measure themselves by themselves and compare themselves with themselves, they are not wise.” 2 Corinthians 10:12 (NIV)
Have you ever had a situation that ended up not being anything like it appeared to be?
I was off on an adventure with my friend Amy. A junking adventure. You know, sorting through what some consider trash and turning it into home décor treasure.
But our adventure on an old farm led me in a completely different decorating direction. Because somehow, a sweet baby donkey ended up coming home with me.
Only problem was, I discovered donkeys can’t live alone. So, I did some negotiating and ended up with not one, but TWO donkeys. And according to the man selling me these donkeys, the girl was pregnant.
Basically, it was a BOGO (Buy One-Get One) deal, and I was thrilled.
Since my husband and I are first-generation farmers (read: we have no idea what we’re doing), surprisingly we found out donkeys are pregnant for 11 to 14 months!
And so began: Baby Donkey Watch.
For months, I went outside each day to love on Helen and her ever-growing belly. I posted pictures on social media and everyone became excited about this coming baby donkey.
But 11 months went by, then 12, 13, 14 months … and still no baby donkey. Yet Helen kept getting bigger and bigger and bigger.
Puzzled, I called the donkey expert to come figure out this situation. I explained things and he gave Helen a quick once-over. Then he said to me (in his deep southern accent), “Ma’am, I’m sorry to tell you this, but that donkey isn’t pregnant.”
Oh. My. Word.
I could not believe it. I mean, I had felt Helen’s stomach move! And why was she getting wider and wider?
Things are not always as they seem.
Honestly, when I think about one of the greatest struggles of my life, comparison, this is a truth I’ve had to pour into my heart over and over.
Comparison tricks me into looking at what others have and who they are and I wonder if somehow, they measure higher in God’s eyes than I do. When I look at others’ success, it’s easy to fall into a destructive mindset. And as Paul wrote in 2 Corinthians 10:12, comparison actually makes us unwise.
“We do not dare to classify or compare ourselves with some who commend themselves. When they measure themselves by themselves and compare themselves with themselves, they are not wise.” (2 Corinthians 10:12)
Wisdom helps us see beyond every seemingly perfect situation and know there’s usually another story being written. That story is rarely told.
The world loves to shout about success, but we seldom speak of our secret sorrows.
And comparison is often a quiet, sorrowful place we don’t invite others into.
Helen’s stomach grew and grew because she was just … well, eating a lot. Her new home is a pasture with maybe too much grass to feed on. So, dreadfully, I had to pop open my phone and craft a social media post to fill in the entire baby-donkey-watch fan base on this outcome.
People were disappointed, but mostly just laughing with us, not at us.
And I know it’s a super trivial example, but each time I look at Helen I remember, things aren’t always as they seem. And I want to be wise when I look at the world around me so comparison doesn’t compromise the unique story God is writing through my life.
Dear God, help me not be blinded by comparison, and let me see things for what they really are. Father, help me gain a holy confidence in the life You’re building just for me. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
TRUTH FOR TODAY:
1 Peter 2:9, “But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.” (NIV)
Culled from https://www.crosswalk.com/devotionals/encouragement/March 8, 2018 at 9:37 am #46108
8th March, 2018
Good morning all. It’s International Women’s Day today. Happy International Women’s Day to all our beautiful ladies. Have a fun day.
As believers in Christ, the Holy Spirit lives in us, abiding in our spirits. He is the river of life within us. This river is a wonderful gift given to each of us by God. It flows with good health, a positive outlook on life, and a generous and forgiving attitude.
Many people, however, have allowed their river to become stopped-up. They are always discouraged, and no matter what they do, they can’t seem to snap out of it. Years of neglect have turned a once-powerful flowing river into a small stream. Do you know people like this? Does this sound like your life?
Until you’re able to get your river cleared out and unclogged, everything will be difficult, disappointing and unfulfilling. You’ll be unable to taste the water that satisfies like nothing else.
Make a choice today to stop spending your life fighting, struggling and trudging through the mud with every step. Ask God to help you clear out the debris. He’ll show you what’s blocking the flow and how to get rid of it. Then, enjoy the satisfying flow of the river of life
Culled from https://joycemeyer.org/dailydevoMarch 9, 2018 at 8:22 am #46150
9th March, 2018
Good morning ladies and gentlemen. I looked at the title of today’s devotional and smiled. God knows our hearts and once we are yielding, He leads us where He wants us to go. Stay blessed.
But How Will I Ever Get There, Lord?
“‘But Lord,’ Gideon replied, ‘how can I rescue Israel?’ … The LORD said to him, ‘I will be with you.’” Judges 6:15a, 16a (NLT)
Laughter. And faith?
It didn’t take long for me to realize these silly teens each took their spiritual life seriously. And they did so in a winsome, attractive way. Very quickly, I was hooked.
During my junior year of high school, I began attending a different church youth group where I saw fun-loving, authentic believers thriving in their faith.
Not only were the students upbeat and hilarious, the leaders took me under their wings and inspired my leadership potential.
One leader, Lenny, was influential in helping me catch a grander vision for my life. A little rough around the edges, Lenny had seen God do the extraordinary, using just the ordinary. He poured his soul into reaching those far from God and building young leaders within the church.
During this time, I began reconnecting with God like never before. I started reading my Bible daily and seeing it with fresh eyes through bite-sized chunks of Scripture.
I also began to pray earnest prayers each night (not just at mealtimes, or right before I took a test!) … realizing my prayer time was actually a conversation with God Himself. Not only could I talk, I could even listen to His direction.
That winter, my new friends convinced me to try attending a summer youth conference in Denver. But there was a major hurdle to climb: funding. Money was tight at home, and since we were so late into the school year, I’d already missed every fundraiser. Without the financial pieces to the puzzle, there was no way I’d be going.
Then the unexpected happened. Lenny called me to say my conference costs were paid in full by an anonymous donor. I was cleared to go to Denver.
Or so I thought.
I soon realized there was another hurdle: my schedule. I’d made a previous commitment to my high school’s summer competitive marching band.
Although I sensed God was providing for me, my mind was filled with doubts as I didn’t see any way possible for my director to allow an upperclassman section leader to miss the final week of competitions. Ultimately, the situation brought me to my knees. One fateful day, I crouched low in my bathroom and cried out to God.
O Lord, this is out of my hands. I do believe I’m supposed to go, but how will I ever get there? What if my director says no, and won’t grant me permission? If You really want me to do this, Lord, then You’ll have to provide the way. Will You help me figure out how I can go?
After a great deal of anxious tears, the Lord guided me with the courage to call my director. To my amazement, he said it sounded like an excellent opportunity and granted me permission.
I never imagined God would take a ragamuffin youth group leader to encourage me in profound ways … or that He’d mysteriously help secure funding for my trip. And to be perfectly honest, I highly doubted He’d answer my prayers for help after I knelt to pray on a bathroom floor.
But there’s a story captured in the book of Judges which reminds me I’m not the only one who’s questioned God’s ability. Even the mighty warrior Gideon asked how God might accomplish something: “‘But Lord,’ Gideon replied, ‘how can I rescue Israel?’ … The LORD said to him, ‘I will be with you” (Judges 6:15a, 16a).
Maybe you’ve had doubts about God’s ability to provide enough time and money for something, too. While I can’t exactly compare attending a national youth conference to rescuing an entire nation, despite my doubts, God was with me. And He’ll do the same for you.
That Denver conference was the culmination of me gradually re-kindling my spiritual fire and firmly committing my life to follow Jesus. I was encouraged to grow spiritually — and forever changed as a result. Though I still have plenty of spiritual growing-up to do, it was a turning point in the right direction, because God used Lenny and friends to make it happen.
Ultimately, the Lord set into motion a renewed faith, and helped instill a lifelong belief that since God knows the plan, He’ll make the path known. When God gives the directive, He’ll grant the direction. (Even if I don’t have a clue how He’ll work out the details!)
Father God, thank You for providing in ways I can’t possibly understand. Forgive me for my doubts, and help me fully trust that You always know what You’re doing. Thanks for allowing me to play a small part in Your grand plans. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
TRUTH FOR TODAY:
2 Corinthians 9:8, “And God will generously provide all you need. Then you will always have everything you need and plenty left over to share with others.” (NLT)
Culled from https://www.crosswalk.com/devotionals/encouragement/March 12, 2018 at 2:37 pm #46273
12th March, 2018
Hello ladies and gentlemen. Today’s devotional is here and it’s so timely.
What Do They Think of Me?
Friend to Friend
I care a lot about what others think. If you commented that you didn’t like this devotional, I admit my feelings would probably be hurt. If I invited you to a party and you didn’t respond, I’d wonder what I did to offend you. If I was excited to see you at church, and you turned the other way to meet another friend first, I’d feel let down. If I had plans to do great things with God, but you questioned the details, I’d consider a new direction. I’d look away from God.
Ever noticed? With our eyes on everyone else’s intentions, opinions and afflictions, it becomes hard to look up to God. Looking upwards when your head is cast downward in defeat is never easy. Even worse, with our eyes to the floor, the glory of God passes overhead, unobserved.
Yet, I don’t want to miss out on God. I want to be intimate with Jesus. Don’t you?
With this in mind, I wonder, what the secret is to letting go of man so I can grab hold of God?
I’ve discovered, I must remember these three things:
- Jesus didn’t come to do His own business, or even man’s business.
Jesus came to do the Father’s business. This is vitally important. God’s will isn’t for us to be the rescuer of man’s every emotion or the fixer of every problem. His will may be that we let people do as they do so we can wait on God and observe what He is about to do.
“For I have come down from heaven not to do my will but to do the will of him who sent me” (John 6:38, NIV).
- Jesus didn’t let man’s opinion disqualify Him.
While Jesus certainly could have been thrown off by the continuous trial-like questioning of the Pharisees, He chose to keep His eyes on the Father’s plan and to keep walking. Jesus didn’t give up His calling because of other people’s questions.
- Today’s rejection is tomorrow’s renewal.
Ask yourself, “Why? Why do I feel so hurt right now? What am I looking to get from man that God already gives me in full?”
When we do these three things, the God who is Faithful reminds us that He is faithful. We remember how He never fails to be an ever-present help in a time of trouble.
Then, we relate and minister to others from a heart of fullness rather than neediness.
Father God, You love relationship. You love to see Your children connect with a heart of love. Help us to come to You more, so that we can come to others with a heart full of You. We need You. Thank You that you teach us through our pain. You are faithful.
In Jesus’ Name,
Consider a problem in your life that is distracting you from God. Examine it in relation to the three points above. How does it change the view of what you are confronting?
Culled from https://www.crosswalk.com/devotionals/girlfriends/March 15, 2018 at 8:33 am #46410
15th March, 2018
Good morning ladies and gentlemen. Hope your week is coming along just great. The devotional for today is here.
The wise in heart are called prudent, understanding, and knowing, and winsome speech increases learning [in both speaker and listener]. — Proverbs 16:21
A word we don’t hear much about today is prudence. It means “careful management: economy.”
In the Bible, prudence, or prudent, means “being good stewards or managers of the gifts God has given us to use.” Those gifts include time, energy, strength and health—even material possessions. They include our bodies, as well as our minds and spirits.
Just as each one of us has been given a different set of gifts, each of us has been given different levels of ability to manage those gifts.
Too many people burn themselves out, constantly using their gifts and abilities in ways that God did not intend them to. Instead of pushing ourselves too hard to please others or reach our own personal goals, we need to listen to God and do what He’s telling us is wise.
Trying to impress people and live up to their standards isn’t prudence. Prudence means asking God how He wants you to use your gifts and then obeying. Learn God’s prudence today and put it into practice so you can enjoy your life the way He intended.
Culled from https://joycemeyer.org/dailydevoMarch 16, 2018 at 2:27 pm #46423
16th March, 2018
Hello ladies and gentlemen. TGIF right? But there is always time for a devotional and today’s own, I found particularly comforting.
When What You Stuffed Blows Up
“Trust in him at all times, you people; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge.” Psalm 62:8 (NIV)
I was doing fine … until the moment I wasn’t.
While I felt comfortable and confident sitting in my seat, I was overwhelmed by doubt and anxiety as I walked forward to complete my assignment. Insecurity and fear assaulted me, and suddenly I was a trembling mess.
I stumbled through what I’d come to do, but afterward I agonized over my flop. What in the world happened? I wondered. How had my assurance so quickly crumbled?
When I quieted my heart and mind to listen for God’s response to these questions, I knew the answer in an instant.
Instead of surrendering my anxieties, I had stuffed them.
There were many obstacles I faced before my meltdown. Instead of handing them over to God one by one, I refused to think about them, creating a false and temporary sense of calm. As the punchline goes, “Denial isn’t just a river in Egypt!”
When a difficult person needled me, I pushed down my frustration.
When my insecurities told me I wasn’t good enough, I filed it away at the back of my mind.
When others around me were discouraged, I gave lip service to encouragement without applying my own words.
When a loved one accused me, I acted like all was well — even though I felt attacked.
I stuffed my emotions with each setback until it all blew up … right as I was about to complete a God-given assignment.
Only in retrospect did I realize that evading my feelings was a poor strategy. I thought I had them all under control, but the reality was I didn’t have them managed at all. They were still there pressed just under the surface so in the end, my emotions erupted and managed to undo me.
In God’s faithfulness, He reminded me of a Scripture I memorized years before, “Trust in him at all times, you people; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge” (Psalm 62:8). God has used the psalmist David’s exhortation over and over again. These words encourage my hiding heart to face emotional realities with Him instead of on my own. When we look at the verses leading to our key passage, we find truths that allow us to surrender our emotions to God with confidence.
God offers rest when we’re stressed.
Psalm 62:5 says, “Yes, my soul, find rest in God; my hope comes from him” (NIV). David wrote this song in a time of suffering when others were attacking him, but instead of battling on alone, he reminded his tired soul to rest. When hard circumstances are coming at us, we don’t have to fight exhaustion by ourselves. God offers us rest and hope if we’ll turn to Him.
God offers stability when we’re shaky.
“Truly he is my rock and my salvation,” (Psalm 62:6a, NIV) the first part of verse 6 reminds us. Though our emotions are like a rolling, ever-changing sea, God is our never-failing rock. Stuffing our feelings never steadies us, but standing on the Rock always does.
God offers refuge when we feel left out in the cold.
Having others come against us can leave us feeling exposed and lonely, but the last part of verse 6 reminds us, “he is my fortress, I will not be shaken” (Psalm 62:6b, NIV). We have a place to run when our emotions are assaulted by rejection. We can run to Christ, our fortress and refuge.
Stuffing our emotions never solves our problems. Instead, stuffing creates a new dynamic where latent emotions explode at the most inopportune times. Let’s choose to surrender our emotions instead, pouring out our hearts to the One who’s our Rest, our Rock and our Refuge.
Lord, I find it hard to come to You with my emotions. I think I need to deal with them by myself, but You remind me to surrender them to You. Today, I pour out my heart to You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
TRUTH FOR TODAY:
1 John 3:19-20, “This is how we know that we belong to the truth and how we set our hearts at rest in his presence: If our hearts condemn us, we know that God is greater than our hearts, and he knows everything.” (NIV)
Culled from https://www.crosswalk.com/devotionals/encouragement/March 19, 2018 at 12:00 pm #46484
19th March, 2018
Hello ladies and gentlemen. Welcome to a brand new week. Wishing you the very best this new week. Today’ devotional is here.
Scrubbing Toilets for the Glory of God?
“So whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.” 1 Corinthians 10:31 (NLT)
I have the coolest job.
Seriously, every day I get to read the Bible and dive into amazing content to find ways to bless others. Working at a Christian publishing house, I get to work with amazing men and women who have dedicated their lives to bringing God glory through the written Word.
Still, there are times I just don’t want to go to work. Maybe there’s a huge presentation looming, I just can’t stand to look at one more spreadsheet, e-mails are piling up, or I once again have to use my “gift” of nagging so we can meet a hard deadline.
It’s during those moments of hair-pulling frustration that I usually see my friend Felix.
I can’t think of one time when I haven’t seen Felix smiling as he diligently goes about his work. Vacuuming the stairs — amazingly done with a smile. Polishing a drinking fountain — it shines like nobody’s business, and Felix did it with a smile.
That huge popcorn spill I had at my desk while nervously eating and trying to meet a deadline? You guessed it — Felix was there, helping me clean it with a joyful heart.
God keeps teaching me through Felix that it’s not what we do but that we do it for God’s glory. We can be the most consistent Bible reader or a walking theology encyclopedia, but unless we apply God’s Word to our daily lives, we are empty.
Consider the Pharisees.
They were the most biblically literate people around. They even knew the Law and the message of the prophets from memory, but when it came to their hearts and applying Scripture to their lives, they were in the negative zone. Check out Matthew 23 to hear how Jesus doesn’t hold back when rebuking them:
“What sorrow awaits you teachers of religious law and you Pharisees. Hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs — beautiful on the outside but filled on the inside with dead people’s bones and all sorts of impurity. Outwardly you look like righteous people, but inwardly your hearts are filled with hypocrisy and lawlessness” (Matthew 23:27-28, NLT).
Every day we face situations small and large where we need to choose how to respond. So, am I like the Pharisees, living my life for show and the praise of others? Looking all put together on the outside — but really letting pride and selfishness take control on the inside? Or am I like my friend Felix, who allows Christ’s joy and love to shine through him no matter the task?
When we read God’s Word, and apply it to our lives, we give God glory and praise. When we live out God’s truth, our lives are testimonies to His goodness, and we can bring real love and hope to a world that desperately needs it.
As today’s key verse says, “So whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God” (1 Corinthians 10:31). In other words, our actions should be motivated by God’s love … in order to bring God glory.
So, whatever I do — whether I’m eating or drinking, scrubbing toilets or finishing one more spreadsheet — I can pray: How am I honoring God? Lord, may everything I do be for Your Glory.
Dear heavenly Father, thank You for Your amazing Word that helps me grow closer to You. May it never become just something I read, but always be a living, breathing, transforming power in my life. Please forgive me for the times I don’t apply it and instead turn to my selfish desires. I pray I never let anything too big or too small stop me from giving You glory. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
TRUTH FOR TODAY:
Matthew 5:16, “In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.” (NLT)
2 Thessalonians 1:11, “So we keep on praying for you, asking our God to enable you to live a life worthy of his call. May he give you the power to accomplish all the good things your faith prompts you to do.” (NLT)
Culled from https://www.crosswalk.com/devotionals/encouragement/March 20, 2018 at 11:14 am #46578
20th March, 2018
Hello ladies and gentlemen. How are you doing this Tuesday? Today’s devotional is here.
A Prayer for Parents
Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it. – Proverbs 22:6
Early adolescence includes young people from 11 to 14 years of age. Contrary to popular thought, adolescence does not have to be a time of rebellion or rejection of earlier teaching. The key to parenting an adolescent is communication. If you keep the lines of communication with your child open, almost any disagreement can be resolved, or any difficulty overcome.
Family meal times continue to be important times for family conversation. Adolescents often try to avoid those times. It would be reasonable to insist on at least three (and preferably five) evening meals per week with all family members present. Discuss family issues, school issues, community issues, politics, God, and spiritual issues. Encourage your teen to think through issues and offer opinions.
Consider this …
Have real conversation with your teenager–don’t just voice demands or criticism. Ask for, and respect, your teen’s opinions, even if you disagree. Share confidences, dreams, mistakes you have made, feelings. Do not withdraw from your child, even if he or she attempts to withdraw from you.
Father, I find it so easy to focus on the negatives in my teen’s life, easy to jump on those things without listening. Help me to speak in a way that will bring out the best in my child. Help me to not put him down, not cut him out. In Jesus’ Name, Amen!
Culled from https://www.ibelieve.com/devotionals/your-daily-prayer/a-prayer-for-parents-your-daily-prayer-september-7-2016.htmlMarch 21, 2018 at 9:36 am #46631
21st March, 2018
Good morning ladies and gentlemen. Today’s devotional/prayer is here. Enjoy!
A Prayer for Guidance
“And what more can David say to you? For you know your servant, O Lord GOD! Because of your promise, and according to your own heart, you have brought about all this greatness, to make your servant know it.” – 2 Samuel 7:20-21 (ESV)
King David spent years in battle, fighting enemies one after another. Not to mention running for his life from the former king, Saul. However, at this time God had given David a break from conflict. He enjoyed much-needed rest in his palace.
Then he got a brilliant idea.
David felt guilty living in luxury while the ark of God “dwelled in a tent.” (See 2 Samuel 7:1-2.) He resolved to do something about it. He was the king, after all. Who better to build a house for the ark of the Lord?
David shared his plan with Nathan the prophet. Since God was with David, Nathan encouraged him to go ahead. There was just one small problem: God didn’t tell David to do it.
That night, God spoke to Nathan with an urgent message for David. God had a different plan for the ark of the covenant, and He needed David to step out of the way. Even though David’s desire came from his best intentions, this job belonged to someone else. And through his mistake, God taught David a valuable lesson.
Sometimes, making a decision solely based on our good intentions interrupts God’s perfect plan.
David took the correction as an opportunity for growing closer to his Lord. And with the heart of a servant, David thanked Him for it. This is God’s desire for us too.
In His firm yet gentle way, God teaches us to trust. And when we allow the Lord to guide our decisions, we find unmatched fulfillment. So let’s agree to seek His instruction today. We can race ahead wanting to serve, but let’s also listen for the times He says, “Stop.”
Then, like David, we can thank our loving Father for the training. After all, He’s the best Coach ever.
Heavenly Father, thank You for Your guidance. Forgive me for getting ahead of Your plans, and help me know when to stop and listen for Your direction. Your ways are perfect, Lord. Thank You for offering gentle grace. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.March 22, 2018 at 9:51 am #46669
22nd March, 2018
Good morning ladies and gentlemen. Today’s devotional is here.
Many Christians suffer because they’re too busy seeking carnal knowledge instead of the Word of God. The Lord Himself said, My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge… (Hosea 4:6).
Paul was an educated man, with a wealth of carnal knowledge. He thought himself better than others and even sought to kill Christians. Thankfully, God had other plans for him and revealed Himself to Paul in a way that changed his life forever.
When Paul realized that seeking carnal knowledge didn’t compare to the importance of spiritual knowledge, he decided to only pursue that instead.
Like Paul, we need to realize the importance of learning spiritual things. Instead of seeking worldly things and filling our heads with things that don’t matter, we need to read, study, meditate on and fill our minds with God’s Word.
I can tell you from experience that knowing God’s Word will change your life. It turned Paul into one of the greatest Christians who ever lived, and it can transform you and lead you into your amazing destiny in Christ.
I encourage you today to seek out the spiritual knowledge found in God’s Word. More of God’s Word in your heart and your mind will help you find what you’re really looking for.
Culled from https://joycemeyer.org/dailydevoMarch 23, 2018 at 10:19 am #46705
23rd March, 2018
Good morning. Today’s devotional is here.
Who Do We Listen To?
My head buzzed from the amount of advice I received that day. Social media and advertisements had informed me about what to do, what to think, what to buy. How to parent. How to win at life. I had googled a pressing question, and the options were staggering.“But Rehoboam rejected the advice the elders gave him and consulted the young men who had grown up with him and were serving him.” 1 Kings 12:8 (NIV)
And I’d just arrived home from a trip with a relative. That person had enthusiastically informed me how fast to go, where to turn and which exit I should have taken.
With all of the noise in our ears, it can be hard to sort through good counsel versus bad. It can be difficult to know how to shut it down when it’s unhelpful.
In today’s passage, a young King Rehoboam is in desperate need of wise counsel. He’s been chosen to succeed his father, Solomon, on the throne. He met with the people, and they had shared a special request. Though Solomon was considered a great ruler, he had taxed his people heavily and required hard labor.
They asked for a king with a gentler touch.
Rehoboam turned to a group of elders for advice, who told him to give the people what they asked. They informed him if he did what they advised, the people would follow him gladly.
“But Rehoboam rejected the advice the elders gave him and consulted the young men who had grown up with him and were serving him” (1 Kings 12:8).
The next set of advisors were younger and less experienced. They said Rehoboam should lay a heavier burden on the people and be unmerciful to them.
He took the unwise counsel.
He shared the news with the people, who in turn revolted. Nations divided. As a result, Rehoboam became king over just two tribes, rather than 12. All because he listened to (and acted on) unwise counsel.
Like Rehoboam, there can be numerous voices that arise when we need answers. That can produce uncertainty, but we have options.
James 3:17b tells us to seek wisdom, defining it as, “first of all pure, then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere” (NIV).
When we don’t know who to listen to, we can measure it by this biblical standard, asking these questions:
- Does this person stand to gain something if I follow his or her advice? (impartial)
- Does this counsel lead to God’s best for me, or God’s best in this situation? (good fruit)
- Does this person’s life reflect the qualities I hope to have in my own life? (pure, peace loving, considerate, submissive or obedient, full of mercy, sincere)
If the answer is “no,” they don’t get to speak into my life.
Second, we examine our own motivation. It’s tempting to take unwise counsel because it makes us feel good in the moment. Or to take it when it affirms what we want to do, even if it’s not the right thing.
But … is it wise? That’s what directs us, not feelings or an easier route.
We can be assured there will always be people telling us what to do or what we should be doing, but thankfully, we are never lost in the noise.
We listen, we act on what is wise and toss out the rest.
Lord, I know You bring wise people into my life to show me the next step. Give me the maturity and insight to listen to what is wise and what reflects You, for You are my closest counsel. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
TRUTH FOR TODAY:
Psalm 51:6, “Behold, You desire truth in the innermost being, And in the hidden part You will make me know wisdom.” (NASB)March 26, 2018 at 10:32 am #46805
26th March, 2018
Good morning ladies and gentlemen. Welcome to Passion week, where we commemorate the events leading to the gruesome death of Jesus Christ on the cross and His Resurrection; the proof of our faith. I hope that we will remember these events and be more thankful to God for reconciling us to Himself through Jesus. Today’s devotional is here.
Dream Homes and Fixer Uppers
Better to live on a corner of the roof than share a house with a quarrelsome wife (Proverbs 21:9, NIV).
Friend to Friend
There we were – my realtor husband and I – standing in front of our new home grinning and holding a bright red SOLD sign for the picture. The excitement of moving into a great house had temporarily eclipsed the stress of packing three weeks before Christmas. I couldn’t see one thing wrong with my dream house. And then we moved in.
The sink in the master bathroom started to leak. The plumber was supposed to come in the afternoon but couldn’t come until after dinnertime. While the plumber tooled around under the sink, James and I were standing on top of our bed trying to fix the ceiling fan and light. My arms ached as I held up the light while James worked with the wiring. Let’s just say it didn’t work the first time (or the second, or the third). I had a choice. Would I complain about my aching arms and quarrel with my husband in the heat of the moment?
Marriage is a lot like having a massive home improvement project for life. There’s always something new to work on. Now in the beginning, you marry Prince Charming and there’s not a blemish on him. He looks perfect. And there’s not a blemish on you either. But as you begin to do life together day after day, you soon realize you need to put some elbow grease into the relationship to keep the magic alive. Healthy relationships take work.
You don’t have to be married to mine the wisdom of today’s verse. In Solomon’s day, roofs were flat and small rooms could be built there. Today’s verse is repeated verbatim in Proverbs 25:24, “Better to live on a corner of the roof than share a house with a quarrelsome wife.” In other words, it’s better to live sparsely in peace than live in comfort with quarreling. It would be better to live in a dusty, little room than in the prettiest most Pinterest perfect home if it meant a complaining, argumentative woman would be living there too.
Quarrelcan be defined as “an angry argument or disagreement, typically between people who are usually on good terms.” Whether married or single, I don’t think any of us want to be known as a quarrelsome woman.
So the next time you feel like fighting with your spouse or someone else, extend grace. Instead of being contentious and argumentative, be gracious. The more gracious you are to others; the more others will be attracted to you. Your loved ones won’t try to escape to the roof. They’ll be happy wherever you are. That sounds a lot like a dream home to me.
Dear Lord, I don’t want to be known as an argumentative, quarrelsome woman. Forgive me for grumbling and complaining. Help me to get along with the people in my life. Fill me with Your Holy Spirit. May I show love and grace to others today.
In Jesus’ Name,
Now It’s Your Turn
Read Matthew 5:9 (NIV), “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.”
What’s one way you can create more peace in your relationship with your spouse, child, parent, or friend?
Culled from https://www.crosswalk.com/devotionals/girlfriends/March 27, 2018 at 9:27 am #46847
Lovely message, Marriage is a lot like having a massive home improvement project for life. There’s always something new to work on. Now in the beginning, you marry Prince Charming and there’s not a blemish on him. He looks perfect. And there’s not a blemish on you either. But as you begin to do life together day after day, you soon realize you need to put some elbow grease into the relationship to keep the magic alive. Healthy relationships take work.
It is Holy week, May the Lord hear our prayers……March 28, 2018 at 11:41 am #46895
28th March, 2018
Good morning ladies and gentlemen. The Bible verse in this devotional is from a part of the Bible that I cannot remember when last I opened that book, but here it is. That just reminds me that there is no part of God’s Word that is negligible. Remember that Jesus paid it all. Today’s devotional is here.’
Detox from Stress? Say Yes to Rest!
I was good at taking care of others and getting things done. But, I wasn’t good at nurturing my own heart or taking care of my well-being. So I became overwhelmed with stress, although you couldn’t tell, because I was good at working hard, pleasing others, surviving and pushing through.
But, in my honest moments, I longed to find my spark again: to experience God’s peace and joy in a fresh, intimate way.
Women are heroes when it comes to loving and caring for others. But I wonder … Why is it so hard to give ourselves permission to rest and refresh, especially when we’re stressed and need it most?
Jesus says, “Come to me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28).
Notice Jesus does not say, “Come to me strong, cheerful, calm and untroubled.”
It’s the opposite. We’re invited to come to Jesus when we’re weary — whether confused, anxious, angry or stressed. Jesus tells us to come as we are. Imperfectly His.
God doesn’t want us to do more for Him. He longs to take care of us and whisper words of love and peace.
Let’s Get Practical
Maybe you find yourself asking: How can I get practical about rest? How can I take better care of myself and draw close to God?
These are questions I asked myself, too. I began researching the answers and, to my delight, God helped me discover 40 ways to detox stress from my soul with uplifting Scriptures, simple soul care to spark joy, and prayers to feel God’s peace again. Here are three:
1. Breathe and rest.
When you feel too stressed to pray, rest knowing Jesus is interceding for you.
Nothing can separate you from His love. Not even your unrest. He’ll never get tired of you. Sometimes, the greatest prayer we can experience is God’s complete understanding and compassion. And His presence.
“Who then is the one who condemns? No one. Christ Jesus who died … is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us.”
(Romans 8:34, NIV)
Soul Care Tip: Are you a tea or coffee lover? Research shows even the act of brewing tea and the aroma of coffee is mood-lifting!
Take a sip of coffee or tea today and breathe. As you do, rest in the thought of Jesus interceding for you.
2. Journal your prayer.
When you feel tired, instead of struggling to reach Jesus, invite Jesus into your world. Research in a New York Times article shows the power of writing your personal story; it leads to behavioral changes and improves happiness. Even writing 10 minutes makes a difference!
“For the word of God is alive and active …”
(Hebrews 4:12a, NIV)
Soul Care Tip: When we journal with God, we give Him space to rewrite our stories. Don’t you get “aha” moments as you write? Where will you journal today?
3. Stop and get some TLC (Tender Loving Care).
It’s OK to have limits. Everyone does. Be honest if you’re discouraged.
Remember Elijah? He did everything right — even defeating the prophets of Baal. Yet his problems didn’t go away. Although his faith was strong, he was stressed.
Elijah ran away and slept. God in His loving kindness, didn’t lecture Elijah. God took care of him. Elijah woke up to fresh bread and water that God left just for him.
Not only that. God sent an angel — to touch him — twice.
God knew Elijah needed physical rejuvenation first in order to hear God’s gentle whispers in a breeze. God gave Elijah TLC.
Soul Care Tip: Instead of layering on guilt, let God love you by getting some TLC. Do you need sleep, something yummy-and-healthy to eat, a friend’s touch, emotional safety or physical rest?
Getting TLC may feel selfish. Yet God’s Word says we comfort others with the comfort we first receive ourselves. (2 Corinthians 1:3-4)
God understands. By injecting pockets of rest, you arrive at the doorway of God’s love for you.
Rest in your loving Savior’s arms. Take one day at a time. God will provide.
Dear Jesus, I don’t want to distract myself with busyness anymore. Bring peace to my heart as I rest and refresh. Thank You for Your love. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
TRUTH FOR TODAY:
Zephaniah 3:17, “The LORD your God is in your midst, a Mighty One, who will save. He will rejoice over you with gladness, He will renew you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing.” (MEV)
March 29, 2018 at 11:42 pm #46941
- This reply was modified 2 months, 3 weeks ago by Oluwakemi.
Today we pause to remember your sacrificial love
That shone light into the darkness
That bore life from such emptiness
That revealed hope out of devastation
That spoke truth through incrimination
That released freedom in spite of imprisonment
And brought us forgiveness instead of punishment.
Thank You that we can now walk in the light of Your life,
Hope, truth, freedom and forgiveness,
This day and everyday.
- This reply was modified 2 months, 3 weeks ago by Nicole.
- Jesus didn’t come to do His own business, or even man’s business.
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