Dec 31-(Revelation 19:6-22:21) "Faithful and True" He rides on a white horse in victory. His name is Faithful and True. Who is this? It's Jesus! He is Faithful—you can count on him. He will never leave you, and all His promises are good. He is True—there is no falsehood in Him. Every word you've read this year, from His lips, is absolutely true. God will not lie to you. The rider of the white horse brings restoration. For, He has restored things, between you and God, as they were when Adam walked with God on the earth. As you close this year, and your Bible, be encouraged that Jesus Christ reigns victorious over your enemies. On January 1st, open the New Year by opening your Daily Bible once again. Start from the beginning and, each day, read God’s message… to YOU.
Dec 30-(Revelation 14:1-19:5) "Babylon" Who is this nation in John's dream? Who is this beast called Babylon? It is Rome. The Roman Empire has had its way over the world for a long time. Rome has beaten down just about every nation on earth. The Roman Empire has had its way over God's people too. Thousands of Christians will die from the bloody arm of Nero. Emperor Domitian will set into motion a persecution of God's people that will last for nearly three centuries. But God gives a clear message to John and to every Christian that is about to go through the ringer. He tells them to persevere. For Rome will one day fall, and God's people will still be standing. You live in a marvelous time. Yes, you may encounter, every once in a while, light persecution in the form of rejection or ridicule; but this isn't as intense as what your spiritual ancestors went through with Rome. Your nation is not hunting you down to execute you because you are a Christian. That may one day change, but right now, you have it made! You live in a marvelous time!! The thing to remember is this: Whatever persecution you encounter, God will see to it that you and all of His people will still be standing in the end. So stay faithful. Don't let your setbacks discourage you. Persevere through your trials. For, they will someday end… and you, my friend, will still be standing.
Dec 29-(Revelation 12-13) "The Dragon" It's an intense sight! John sees a woman about to give birth to a child. His eye catches a dragon waiting to pounce on the newborn. A terrible war breaks out in Heaven! In the nick of time the woman escapes with her child. Dejected and defeated, the dragon turns his destructive plan on the rest of God's people. Who is this dragon? It's Satan! Though not as powerful as he once was, Satan still attacks God's people. He will attack you! You probably can recall some moments when you knew he was attacking. He used a critic... a catastrophe... an illness... a friend. Satan fights dirty; and he’ll use anything and everything he can to do you in! But don't be afraid of him. Your God threw him out of Heaven, and He can throw him out of your way. Today, "Resist the Devil and he will flee from you." James 4:7. "Take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one." Ephesians 6:16.
Dec 28-(Revelation 4:1-8:6) "Twenty Four Elders" John is having a vision from God. Now, a vision is an eye popping dream that is loaded with deeper spiritual meaning. When you read one of the accounts of John's visions, you must ask yourself two questions: What do I see? And what does it mean? John sees twenty four men standing before the throne of God. All twenty four elders are wearing a crown. What does this mean? This means they carry some authority; they carry more authority than most. All of a sudden, the twenty four rulers take off their crowns and begin to bow. There's a sound of crowns hitting the floor as these 'kings' worship ‘Him who sits on the Throne of God’! What does this mean? It means that God is sovereign. He possesses all power and dominion. You do not!! It means that surrender is the proper way to approach God. For though you possess some power, your power is nothing compared to God's awesome power. The only way to come to God is to give up your crown, and place it at the foot of God's throne. Anything else will not do. Today, make sure you check your crown at the door. Live today with a sense of surrender in all you say and do. Seek to please your King!! (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Dec 27-(Revelation 1:1-3:22) "Church Member" What kind of church member are you? What kind of church member will you be today? The Book Of Revelation describes several kinds of members of God's church. These 'church members' range from having radical faith to being complacent and lukewarm. You may want to read today's passage to get a good picture of the various kinds of Christians in the 7 churches. Notice how some of them water down what God says, while some fall away because they simply lose the passion they once had. Then there is the church in Smyrna. The people in this little church appear to be insignificant and ineffective. They are viewed as a poor church. What can they offer? But God says they are very rich! Why? They have kept their focus on the Lord while living in a broken world. They are faithful in affliction. They keep working, and simply refuse to quit! And it is not over... This little church is going to go through more setbacks, persecution, and hardship. Some will even die! But Jesus encourages this church, and encourages you, to hang in there… because it will be worth it! God will reward your perseverance. As this year draws to a close, and a new year is about to begin, rededicate your life to God once more. Be determined to be the best member of His church you can possibly be. Make a commitment to persevere through what lies ahead, knowing that the Lord will bless your faithfulness.
Dec 26-(3 John) "Diotrephes" Who is this guy? Diotrephes is a guy with an ego. He makes everything about what he is doing, instead of what God is doing. He's preoccupied with being noticed and appreciated. When there is a job to do, he must be in charge. He demands that things be done his way. Why? Diotrephes has a deep desire to be 'first'. His love for self is hurting the church. How about you? Under a thin veneer of humility, is there a deep desire to be first? Do you have to be noticed? Do you have to be the center of attention? Are you quick to be jealous over someone else getting a little credit? There is no place in God's Kingdom for selfishness!! Today, remember what Jesus said: "The first will be last and the last will be first." So humble out... Yield your way to others. Be a servant. Become a disciple who loves to see others honored.
Dec 25-(Hebrews 11-12) "Witnesses" You are being watched! A great cloud of witnesses watch what you will do next. They have given you great examples of what it means to live by your faith in God. So they are pulling for you to do the right thing. They are cheering you on to put your faith into action. These witnesses include great men and women of faith. There is Abel, Abraham, Joseph, Moses, and David. They are men and women who have done some amazing things based on their faith. They have gone through the ringer too, and passed the testing of their faith. And so, you now stand in the arena of life, as they watch from heaven and history. It's your turn. What do you do? You throw off the sin and anything else that would hinder you from running the race marked out for you. You keep your focus on Christ so you can finish strong. Today, think of the people who have passed on before you and have passed on the torch of faith to you. They are counting on you to carry THE FAITH to the next generation. Look for the things that could keep you from finishing your mission, and get rid of them. Above all, keep moving forward and don't quit! For, God will reward your faithfulness someday.
Dec 24-(Hebrews 6-10) "Melchizedek" He is called the high priest of Salem. This means he is a priest of peace. He has no family heritage. There is no record of his death. Melchizedek is a special priest appointed by God. So when Abraham meets him, he does something no man ever did for another. He gave him a tenth of what he had. Abraham saw him as more than a mere man. For, Melchizedek represented God himself! The Hebrew writer believes Jesus is much like Melchizedek. Jesus also is a priest that opens the way to God. His lineage extends into Heaven. Though there is a record of his death, He arose from the dead… and still lives! No one else has done this. But Jesus is much more than Melchizedek, the High Priest of Salem. He is the High Priest of Heaven. For, Jesus enters the holiest of places, and opens a new way to Heaven by sacrificing Himself, over another lamb. He now serves before His Father on your behalf. He is your daily sacrifice that makes it possible to approach God at all. Praise God!! Today, on Christmas Eve, let the Prince and Priest of Peace fill your heart with humble gratitude and incredible joy. (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Dec 23-(Hebrews 1:1-6:12) "The Priest" A man stands next to a lamb with a knife in his hand. He looks up and calls on the mercy of God, then cuts the lamb's throat. He can feel the life slowly leave the innocent animal. A sense of sadness and gladness come over the people. Why? A sacrifice has been made. Sin is atoned for another day. The Priest does this on behalf of the people every day... all day long. This goes on for centuries until another High Priest appears. There has never been, and will never be, anyone like this Priest. Because this time, He brings no lamb! Yet, He has a suitable sacrifice. He plans to sacrifice Himself. By doing this, He builds a bridge and provides a way for Man to be with his God. He makes atonement for sin once and for all. Sadness and gladness once again are felt in the hearts of people. Jesus Christ is your High Priest! He comes before God, and offers Himself on your behalf. No one else can do this for you. Praise God He did! Today, appreciate the High Priest who made a way for you to be with God.
Dec 22-(2 Peter 1:5-11) "The Nearsighted" Being nearsighted is to be shortsighted. This is the inability to see things clearly at a distance. For example: Up close, everything looks clear, but at a distance, everything starts to get blurry. This is true in life. A lot of people can't see things past themselves. They lose sight of the bigger picture of God's plan. This leads to frustration and discouragement. By losing their spiritual perspective, believers fail to see clearly how God works everything together for good. They can't relax. It's difficult to trust God, or hope for a secure future. So what do you do? Peter says, “Keep your faith fresh.” Set your faith up to grow. When your faith grows, you will clearly see your role in God's grand plan. Your life will become effective and productive; you will never fall, because your path is clear to see. Today, take more responsibility for your faith. Don't settle with just knowing information. Be more and more about transformation. Become as much like Christ as you can… and experience a farsighted faith that will bless your life. (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Dec 21-(1 Peter) "Slaves" How are things going at work? The workplace can be a brutal place for a follower of Christ. Gossip, backbiting, and jealousy can make you want to toss in the towel and join in the 'drama'. But God has another view of the workplace. Instead of work being a 'grind' for you, He wants it to be a place of grace for Him. So He is counting on you to endure and 'go high', when everyone else is going 'low'. Do you think you can do this today? For, when you keep your cool, and live wisely in the workplace, doors will open for you to grow. You end up pleasing your 'real Master', and you get an opportunity to help others see Jesus. (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Dec 20-(James 2:12-13, 3:17, 4:6-12) "The Merciful" To have the favor of God is to have something very, very special—it's to have His mercy. When you stop and think about it, God has been very merciful to you. You mean everything to Him. He gives you what you need, over what you deserve. And when the day comes when you stand before God, He will judge you based on mercy. You will be judged, not entirely based on His mercy, but also on how merciful you've been to others. That's why James challenges you to shape your dialogue and deeds by the mercy that God now extends to you. Do you consider yourself to be a merciful person? When you talk about others, does mercy influence what comes out of your mouth? How do you think God talks about you behind your back? Based on His grace, how do you think God treats you as a sinner? Are you treating people with the same kind of mercy God extends to you? Does God's mercy humble you? Today, realize the depth of God's great love for you. Let His mercy have a huge impact on how you treat others. Today, be merciful.
Dec 19-(2 Timothy 1-5) "Ancestors" The Apostle Paul remembers the spiritual legacy of his ancestors; he reminds Timothy of his to encourage him to be faithful to God. Ancestors... Everyone has them. It's through descendants that family traits and traditions make their way through the centuries and touch the present. This is also true with spiritual values, as faith in Christ is handed off to the next generation. Can you think of some ancestors that loved the Lord? You owe a lot to those who have served God before you. There was a time when they took hold of 'the torch' of service, and now, it's your turn. They touched the future by being faithful in the past. It's their faith that paved the way for you! Like Timothy, the faith you have in Christ, which once lived in them, now lives in you. One day, you will pass this torch. Your legacy of faith in God will be remembered by your children and their children... but only if you nurture your faith and keep it growing like they did. Today, maintain your faith in Jesus Christ. Feed it with the word. Exercise it with application. Strengthen it through service. When you do these things, you will pass a flaming torch of faith that will lead the next generation to trust the Lord. (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Dec 18-(Titus 3) "Overseer" His job is to shepherd God's people. He is to protect the church. He must be well acquainted with God's Word so he can teach sound doctrine and refute false teaching. He is to be a model of morality and faith for the disciples under his care. The way he leads his household is a great indication of how he will lead God's people. You can't afford to overlook such qualities of an overseer in God's Kingdom. You want to make sure that men, like those Paul describes to Titus, are shepherding God's flock. They don't have to be flawless, but they must be faithful! Treat leaders like this with honor and respect. But most of all, pray for them to be men who will be as much like Jesus as they possible can. For, these are the kind of men who best oversee God's people. (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Dec 17-(1 Timothy 5) "Widows" The life of a widow in ancient times wasn't easy. Widows who had no children stood a good chance of losing their property and becoming destitute. It was not uncommon to see widows begging for help in the streets. The Apostle Paul gives Timothy prudent guidelines as he helps the needy he encounters. What are you doing for the needy you notice? Are you sharing with others who need help? It's easy to be critical and cold to those in need. Today, fight your urge to criticize, and offer a caring touch to the needy. Allow God to use you to help another human being who could use a break. (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Dec 16-(Philippians 2:19-24) "Timothy" There is a long list of men the Apostle Paul mentored; but none of them was as favored as Timothy. You see Timothy mentioned in the book of Acts, as well as some of Paul's letters. He also wrote two letters to Timothy. What stands out about this young man is summed up in a couple of sentences: "I have no one else like him, who will show genuine concern for your welfare. For everyone looks out for their own interests, not those of Jesus Christ." Take a close look at Timothy, and you discover that he is zeroed in on one thing—the interests of Jesus Christ. If you haven't noticed, the world can be pretty preoccupied with itself. Careers, cars, and kids can crowd out the Kingdom of God for a lot of people. This may not seem like a big deal, but your priorities not only shape your life on earth, but your values determine what you will have in eternity. Where will your interests be today? Will the values of God's Kingdom be in what you do today? Today, find a way to apply your desire to please God into your workplace, campus, and home. Look out for the interests of Jesus.
Dec 15-(Ephesians 5) "Children Of Light" Have you ever heard of the phrase: "As different as night and day"? Darkness and light are complete opposites; neither can be in the presence of the other. Darkness conceals but light reveals. This is the contrast between living your life in the world, and living your life in Christ. Living as a child of the light totally goes against the values and conduct of the world. Living as a child of light is about pleasing God in every way. Your words are better... your conduct is better... your outlook is better too. You also become a beacon of light for others. The thing is, you decide how much light you will have. Like a dimmer switch, you control how much of God's light, (His influence and character), will be in your life. So... how bright is it in your life? How bright will it be today? Today, flip the switch ON! Be a light in the darkness around you. Show others the character of Jesus. Light a path that will lead others to Heaven. (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Dec 14-(Colossians 1:1-4:18; Philemon 1-25) "My Family" 2000 years ago, the Apostle Paul challenged the families of the church in Colossae to treat each other with the love of Christ. Wives are to yield their way to their husbands like they would for Jesus. Husbands are to be tender with their wives like Christ is with them. Children are to obey their parents as they would The Lord. Dads are not to be tyrants with their kids, but like Jesus clearly demonstrated, love them in a way that brings out their best. Hmmm... Families haven't changed much, have they? Families all over the world struggle to treat one another properly. Spouses fight each other for control. Children are constantly testing the boundaries of authority. Parents and children are easily polarized by a lack of understanding and respect. These instructions are as relevant today as they were 2000 years ago! Families could avoid a lot of trouble if they would simply apply them. As you read today's passage, look at how you are treating your family. Make a commitment today to treat them like the Lord has been treating you.
Dec 13-(Acts 27-28) "Julius, Aristarchus, and 274 more passengers" When things are at their worst, the people see your best! Everyone else seems to be in a panic; but the Apostle Paul experiences a hurricane, a shipwreck, and a snake bite without melting down. He is able to keep his cool. How is he able to do this? That's easy. He believes God is going to take care of him. He places his future in God's hands, so he doesn't worry about the outcome. Paul believes that no matter what, the outcome will be good (Romans 8:28). When you can trust God with your future, you're able to focus on your mission! Today, give your worries and cares to God. Do it right now! Live the rest of your day in peace, and focus on your mission. Let others see the best come out of you. (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Dec 12-(Acts 24) "Felix" He has been a part of the system for a long time. As judge, Felix hears the Apostle Paul's case, then abruptly adjourns the court. Later, he calls for Paul to meet with him privately. He's hoping for a bribe, but gets a bible lesson instead! Felix is curious about Paul and his message. He asks his wife to join him to listen to Paul. Paul's presentation starts to make the couple nervous. In fear, Felix sends Paul back to his prison cell. When Felix finds a more convenient time, he plans to call Paul back. But another opportunity to hear what Paul has on his mind never comes. Felix is replaced by another governor, and never heard from again. Felix offers a serious warning. Never put off until tomorrow, what you can do today; because there is no guarantee that you will have tomorrow! So... What are you dragging your feet about? What is God calling you to do right now? Whatever it is... DON'T PUT IT OFF!! Be urgent about the will of God. You may never get another chance to do what God wants. All you have is today. So seize the day… and obey! (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Dec 11-(Acts 21:17-23:35) "The Apostle Paul" You never know when an opportunity to share your faith may occur. Sometimes, it's as easy as falling off a log. At other times, a door will open while in a tough spot. The Apostle Paul isn't in town a week, before he gets into serious trouble. A crowd gathers and try's to kill him. The only thing that saves his life, is that he gets arrested. Talk about a bad day!! While most folks would be licking their wounds and hanging their head, the Apostle Paul recognizes a great opportunity to talk about what Jesus has done for him. He is still focused on his mission. Hmmm... Didn't the Apostle Paul hear about Jesus from a disciple named Stephen when he was about to be stoned? Lucky for Paul that Stephen kept his head. You never know who may be listening to you while in a lousy situation. When trouble comes your way, will you be caught up with worry and self-pity, or will you focus on your mission? Today, stay focused on the mission God has given you. Who knows? How you handle your tough situations could turn into a triumph for someone else. (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Dec 10-(Acts 21) "Agabus" He walks over... He takes the Apostle Paul's belt, and ties himself up with it. Then he says, "The owner of this belt will be bound and arrested!" Agabus reminds you that being a Christian isn't always easy. There's always someone who will have a problem with your faith in God. That's because you make them uncomfortable. Your faith reminds them of their flaws and foolishness. So they give you a few digs and insults. They pounce on your inconsistency as if it were hypocrisy. They may even threaten you. What will you do when you face such opposition? You continue to trust The Lord! This is what prepared the Apostle Paul. He believed that when God brought him to it, God would help him through it. Why? God told Paul he would suffer from the very beginning (Acts 9). So whatever happened to him was no surprise. He knew it was normal (2 Tim 3:12). Most of all, he knew that if he met his difficulties with faith, someone could be reached (Phil 1:12). Today, don't be afraid! Be bold! Try to share your faith with someone through an invitation to church, a scripture, giving credit to God, or simply telling them how Jesus has blessed you. And if you get a strange look or a frumpy response, shake it off, and praise your God for the opportunity to talk about how awesome He is. (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Dec 9-(Romans 12:1-16:27) "Phoebe" As Paul closes his letter to the church in Rome, he lists several names. Phoebe starts the list. There really isn't much info on her, or most of the others listed; yet, Paul places her on top of his list. You see, Phoebe is known for one thing. She is known for her help. And when Paul reminisces about all of the people who have helped him in ministry, he thinks of Phoebe. Who do you think of? When it comes to all the people who have helped you along the way, who comes to mind? Today, appreciate all the people God has placed in your life. Remember to thank God for giving you the redemptive relationships you have. It's their help that makes you better!
Dec 8-(Romans 9:1-11:36) "Branches" You may have a difficult time fully understanding this, but for generations, Gentiles were not a part of God's kingdom. For, God had chosen a nation of people through one man—Abraham, who would be the beginning of the Jews. They were exclusively His people for a very long time. God would plan a day when the Gentiles would also finally be in His family. It would be thousands of years before someone like you could be fortunate enough to be in the kingdom of God. This is what Paul is trying to say in today's passage. He wants the Roman Christians to understand that God took them like a branch, and grafted them into His chosen people. It is only by God's mercy that He did this. Aren't you glad? You should be! He made room for you by cutting off the people who refused to obey him. God hopes you will appreciate what He's done. He also hopes you understand, that if you refuse His reign in your life, He will cut you off too. This may sound harsh, but it's not. God does this out of love. Today, appreciate the mercy that God has extended to you by including you into His family. Never take this for granted. Appreciate His redemption by worshiping and serving Him.
Dec 7-(Romans 3:21-8:39) "Conquerer" Do you realize that you have won? Christ gives you victory! With Christ, sin no longer can have power over you. With Christ, all the things that happen, or will happen, to you now work together for your ultimate good. With Christ, you are more than a conqueror! With Jesus as your ally, you not only win over your sin, you can reign victoriously over your sin! It can no longer have control over you. For, God loves you very much, and will help you with everything. Today, live with a great sense of hope. Expect God to give you the strength to conquer sin. Let God's unfailing love fill you with courage and confidence. For, nothing can defeat you!
Dec 6-(Romans 1:1-3:20) "The Preacher" Hmmm... When you think of the preacher, you immediately think of a person who spends hours in preparation to speak in a pulpit. But as you read the first few chapters in Romans you get a broader idea of who a preacher is. You get the idea that every Christian is a 'preacher'! So guess what? That's right! You are a preacher too! You get into your pulpit and preach a sermon every day. You give a message to everyone around you. So I gotta ask... Will it be a good sermon? How much preparation will you be giving to your lesson today? Will you believe what you preach, enough to apply your own words? Or will your walk be different than your talk? Today, don't adjust your message to fit your lifestyle; do the opposite—practice what you preach! Be as consistent as you can with the Good News of Jesus Christ. Let people see your sermon in action! (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Dec 5-(2 Corinthians 10:1-13:14) "Super Apostles" They boast about themselves every chance they get. They brag about their ministry for self-promotion. They give the impression that they are all about God; but they are really about what makes them look good. This is in sharp contrast of the Apostle Paul. Instead of bragging about his accomplishments, he boasts about his weaknesses. He is quick to admit he isn't eloquent or a gifted speaker. He would rather go hungry than ask for financial support. The Apostle Paul may not seem all that impressive, but he is a great example of the kind of servants you should respect in God's Kingdom. Can you think of servants like the Apostle Paul in your church? If you can, pray for them to keep serving with humility. Honor those who work hard among you. Appreciate their sacrifice to help you become more and more like Christ. (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Dec 4-(2 Corinthians 2) "The Aroma Of Christ" Aromas conjure up memories. Whether it's the light scent of perfume, or the pungent odor of a pig farm, aromas remind us of both the good and the bad. The Bible compares your life with God to an aroma. The way you live for Christ will either attract or repel others. For some, your love and dedication to God will bring something positive, and give great encouragement. To others, your love for God will turn their stomach, and turn them off! So, what do you do? All that matters is that you 'smell' like Jesus. Regardless of how people will respond to your example, make sure it's a good one—a godly one. Today, and the rest of the week, be as much like Christ as you can. Let others see your love for God. Remind others, through your words and deeds, that God must be honored. (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Dec 3-(Acts 19:23-20:1) "Gaius and Aristarchus" Paul and his companions are in the great city of Ephesus. Over a third of a million people live there, and Paul and his aides were bringing large numbers of people to the Lord. But things hit a snag. Not everyone loves their message. Some strongly oppose it. They grab Gaius and Aristarchus and intend to hurt them. Why? They are being hit in the pocketbook!! In the confusion of the riot, an interesting comment is made. A leader in the city calms the crowd down, and makes this observation about the character of Paul and his companions: "You have brought these men here, though they have neither robbed temples nor blasphemed our goddess." Hmmm... The message that has brought so much disturbance hasn't come from the messengers. The message is controversial all by itself. For, Paul and his friends have a reputation for preaching their message with integrity. They are considerate of opposing views, and teach with humility and respect for others. How about you? What are people hearing from your lips? Is there a critical and judgmental flavor in your message? Or do people sense a tone of humility in your words. It's amazing how effective you can be by simply being nice. Today, make sure the good news you share with others is good news. Let God's message stir the hearts of others by being plain and humble. Try to talk about people and spiritual matters without tearing them down. For this will not help the good news be good. (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Dec 2-(1 Corinthians 11:17-14:40) "Kids and Grown-Ups" Every healthy family has them: Kids and Grown-Ups. No family can survive without them. God's family is made-up of the same. There are those who are immature—Christians who are looking for what they can get. They may be new at following Christ, or they may be stuck in immaturity for years. The immature are caught up in the petty things of life. Then there are the mature—those who have learned to follow Christ with less and less supervision. They tackle the moments that challenge their faith… and they grow. They are focused on what they can give. They have no time for petty or childish issues. As you read today's passages, notice where the apostle Paul is challenging the church in Corinth to grow up. Ask yourself, as you read today's passage, “Am I maturing in Christ?” If so, where? What will I do to grow into a mature Christian? God has designed you for maturity. He doesn't want you to stay the same. His Kingdom – and your church – needs all the grown-ups it can get! Today, start doing the things that will help you mature.
Dec 1-(1 Corinthians 7) "The Married" Marriage has been around since the beginning of mankind. Marriage is one of the most powerful relationships on earth. It originated in the heart of God and is ordained by God! So, why are so many 'Christian' couples doing so little in the Kingdom? Why do so many singles serve God so well, until they are married… and drop off the radar? Well, it's not that marriage is bad. Marriage is designed to be good. The problem may have to do with many singles entering marriage carelessly. They marry based on factors that have little to do with the Lord and His kingdom. It's more about the pursuit of happiness than holiness. Once married, their lives get busier with the unique challenges and responsibilities that go with marriage, and they struggle making the adjustment. Their relationship with each other soon rivals their relationship with God and ministry. Thus, The Lord loses two more workers in His Kingdom! Paul tries to address this rivalry. He knows how marriage can divide the heart of a disciple. So He challenges the married to recognize the powerful impact marriage has on their discipleship. It's your discipleship that will determine if your marriage will impede or enhance your impact to spread God's message to others. If you are single, approach marriage as a privilege and not a right. Consider carefully how marriage will impact your ability to serve the Lord. Make sure you marry someone who will not put out or dim your light, but help your light shine. If you are already married, what adjustments could you make to ensure that your hearts will not be divided, so you both can continue to passionately serve the Lord? Today, make a commitment to always honor God in your marriage. (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)