Sept 30-(Psalm 107, 116, 118, 125) "The Redeemed" Whether the redeemed are in darkness or despair, when they call out to their God, the Lord delivers them. These Psalms encourage the redeemed to praise their God and tell the story of how He delivered them from all kinds of trouble. What kind of trouble are you facing today? Have you called out to God for help? Who needs some hope? Who needs to know that God can help them in their time of need? Do others know 'your story’? Do they know about the moments God delivered you from trouble? You are evidence of The Lord's power. What a great way to bring glory to God and give others hope. Today, share a time The Lord helped you. Today, look for an opportunity to give your God the credit.
Sept 29-(Psalm 78) "Asaph" Not all of the Psalms are written by David. Some are written by Asaph. He lived during the captivity. This psalm recalls the stubbornness of Israel. In spite of God's generosity and power, Israel would constantly forget their Lord. They would ignore Him... how sad. Israel would slowly grow tired of God, and put Him to the test. They would get caught up in other things and other gods. This approach led God's people into years of senseless misery and eventually bondage. Yet, God loved them and would forgive them over and over again. Have you ever put God to the test? Are you putting God to the test right now? If so, why? What do you hope to gain by being hardheaded? You can test God's patience, but you will not break His love for you. You may have to go through the ringer before you will change, but never forget this: God will keep loving you. He will love you through the consequences of your poor choices, and will be there to help you back… if you ever want to turn it around.
Sept 28-(Zechariah 7:1-8:23) "The Remnant" What’s left of God's people, are beginning to return to Jerusalem. The temple is still unfinished. What are they to do once they return? They are to basically do the same thing God required of them before the captivity occurred: They are to show kindness and mercy to each other; they are to be fair with one another; they are to treat each other with integrity. Their treatment of each other was just as important as their Temple! There's a lesson here: How you treat other people is very important to your Lord! He desires that you show mercy to others, more than offering a sacrifice to Him. That's pretty important; because it doesn't matter how much your worship goes toward God, if your worship isn't followed by love and kindness toward other people. Your worship is a waste of time if you’re not also loving the people around you. So... what do you think God wants from you today? It's the same thing He wanted from you yesterday—He wants you to treat other people with mercy and kindness; He wants you to treat others fairly. Today, make this your worship toward God.
Sept 27-(Zechariah 3) "Joshua" Zechariah has a vision about the future. A priest is standing before him. His name is Joshua. He's a mess!! He's dressed in filthy clothes. Who is this man? Who does he represent? This man represents the remnant (the few that are left) of Israel. They stand before God, filthy with their sin. But God has 'Joshua' remove these rags, and clothes him in clean, priestly garments. This vision promised that Israel would one day be cleansed of their sin. This would happen when the 'Branch'... the 'Stone' would appear. The branch and stone, of coarse, are references to Jesus!! Imagine the excitement of hearing this! One day, Jesus would come and cleanse the remnant of Israel along with the rest of the world. When Jesus came to earth, he took all of man's filthiness (including yours) to the cross and made him (and you) clean. All He asks is that you walk in His ways and obey him. No matter how far you've drifted from God... No matter how much of a mess you’ve made of things... Remember that God can cleanse you and restore you. He clothes you in Christ. He gives you priestly clothing to wear. He gives you a fresh start and a new life dedicated to service. Today, let God's redemption and restoration motivate you to active service in His Kingdom.
Sept 26-(Haggai 1:1-2:9; Zechariah 1:1-6; Haggai 2:10-23) "Haggai" Haggai doesn't give his preference or opinion as he speaks to the people. His motives are pure. He makes it clear that what he is speaking to the people is a message directly from God. He goes to the trouble of saying this 26 times in only 2 chapters!! This must be very important to communicate. What is at the core of what you are saying and doing? Is it a personal preference? Could it be jaded by pride and selfishness? What is the real motive behind your words and actions? Only you can answer this question. You would be astonished at how many folks appear to be saying godly words, and doing godly things – out of anger, fear, pride, or selfishness – only to push their particular preference.
Today, look deeply at the motives behind what you are saying and doing for The Lord. Make sure what you say and do is what God would want.
Sept 25-(Ezra 4-6) "Bishlam, Mithredath, Tabeel" The rebuilding of Jerusalem is met with opposition... Go figure! Whenever you are trying to restore or rebuild what God wants, you can expect someone to throw a wet blanket on the project. Satan will use anything and anyone to discourage you and impeded your efforts. Here in Ezra, the work of Bishlam, Mithredath, and Tabeel STOPS THE WORK! The rebuilding project is dormant for nearly 25 years. You can imagine how frustrating this must have been for Ezra and Nehemiah. But God will get the ball rolling again, and the City of God will be up and running once again. What or who is Satan using to discourage you from working to build up God's Kingdom? Is he using criticism? Is he capitalizing on your fears? Is he using a close friend? Whatever or whoever is getting in your way, remember to keep trusting God… and get to work!!! God eventually worked out the bugs in Ezra's plans, and He will work them out for you… as long as you remain faithful, and persevere!
Sept 24-(Daniel 10:1-12:13) "The Guardians From Heaven" Daniel is visited by a celestial being—an angel. At first, Daniel is terrified. But after some help, he is able to stand on his feet. Daniel learns that the future of God's people will be pretty bumpy but ultimately secure. What is the function of angels? James Burton Coffman sheds light on the activity of angels: The function of angels includes the following: (1) They carry away the souls of the departed in death (Luke 16:22). (2) They exercise diligence to watch over little children (Matthew 18:11). (3) All of the angels are engaged in the service of those who shall inherit salvation (Hebrews 1:14). (4) They aid, providentially, in bringing sinners in contact with the gospel (Acts 8:26). (5) They execute the sentence of God in the destruction of sinners whose importance justifies their immediate removal from the earth (Acts 12:23). (6) One of the mightiest angels, The Angel of Revelation 10, has charge of maintaining "the little book," (The Bible?) "until time shall be no more." (7) On special occasion, when God's great prophets and preachers of the Word needed special encouragement, an angel of God stood by to inform, to prophesy, and to encourage (Acts 27:23). This would appear to have been a special thing on behalf of the apostles. Here in Daniel, however, there is definitely another function of the blessed angels—that of influencing human affairs through human governments for the achievement of God's purposes among men. Hopefully, you are getting the idea that angels are not the imagination of man, but are real, and have a viable function in God's Kingdom and in your life. There is no reason to believe that God doesn't use His angels today. So let The Guardians From Heaven fill you with confidence when afraid and inspiration to fulfill God's purpose in you. (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Sept 23-(Ezra 1:1-4:5) "The Enemies Of Judah and Benjamin" No matter what you do for the Lord, be prepared for some opposition! There's always someone who will try to throw a wrench in the works. That's what happened to Ezra. As soon as the people began to rebuild the temple, the critics came out of the woodwork. They gave God's people trouble all through the reign of King Cyrus too. What would you like to do for the Lord? Who can you expect to oppose you? Will you be ready? Don't sweat it!! You might as well expect some opposition. For, you are making the Devil nervous!! Today, meet any opposition with the power of God. Call on God to help… and finish the job!!
Sept 22-(Daniel 6:1-28) "Darius" He is a Persian and a pagan! By the time Daniel is through with him, Darius is a believer. How did this happen? Darius is sizing up Daniel. He sees his character. He respects and admires Daniel. And when Daniel is falsely accused, Darius sees how Daniel handles adversity. For, Daniel trusts the Lord with the lions in his life. Darius sees God working powerfully in Daniel's life. This influences him to trust God too. Do you realize people are watching you all the time? Darius-type people are looking for someone who has godly character. They are looking to see how powerfully God is working in you. They especially want to see how you handle adversity; you know, when things don't turn out like you want. So what will they see from you? Will your character encourage them to trust the Lord? You can't fake faith forever. It's either legit or a lie. Which will it be for you? Will your faith be legit or a lie? Today, what will others learn about God from you? Today, dare to be a Daniel… and change the world! (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Sept 21-(Daniel 5) "King Belshazzar" He is the son of Nebuchadnezzar. In his pride, King Belshazzar throws a big party. His guests drink from the goblets he pillaged from God's Temple in Jerusalem. They are heard praising the gods of gold, silver, bronze, wood, and stone. All of a sudden, the fingers of a human hand appear from nowhere, and write on the wall a message of doom. The King shakes in his shoes!! A few days later, Belshazzar lies dead—assassinated! The Babylonian empire has suddenly come to an end. Belshazzar teaches you that when you begin to trust your money or materials over God, you will get yourself into trouble. It's okay to be a good steward of the things you have; God wants that! But when you start to make major decisions based on what you have, rather than who has you, it's going to change your priorities and lead to more costly mistakes. Don't let this happen to you. Today, reserve the prominent place in your heart for the Lord. Let nothing else have greater influence on you than your God. Make Him and the purpose of His kingdom first, and expect God to bless you.
Sept 20-(Daniel 7:1-8:27) "The Ancient Of Days" Daniel is having a vision... He
sees lions, bears, leopards, and another beast that is very difficult to describe. It is
very powerful and covered with 10 horns! What could these images possibly be about?
They are about the future. They speak of Babylon, Persia, Greece, and Rome. These kingdoms would subdue and harm God's people. But the vision Daniel is having gives every believer in God great hope. Though kingdoms will come and go, God – ‘The Ancient Of Days’ – will outlast them all. He will bring back His people, and they will reign together triumphant! There is some talk, today, of evil nations getting nuclear weapons and blowing up this planet. There are also websites and tabloids that speak of 'death stars' and 'meteors' zooming across space that will someday smash and destroy the earth. Hmmm...! It all sounds pretty serious doesn't it? It's enough to make you worry in fear. But it's good to know that no matter how evil, frightening, or out of control the world may appear, you can be secure with confidence that God will continue to reign and rule. Yes, there may come a time you may die for your faith; and it's possible the world could be destroyed. But remember that only ‘The Ancient Of Days’ will determine if and when these things will happen. Most of all, regardless of what happens, ‘The Ancient Of Days’ will never leave your side. God will stay with you until you make it safely back home. Today, trust God to control what you can't. Entrust these unsettling times to the God who holds all of time in the palm of his hand. Trust Him to take care of you.
Sept 19-(Psalm 102, 106, 124, 137) "The Captives" These four psalms are not written by David; these were written during the Babylonian captivity of Israel. They are laments. In other words, they are sad songs. For, these songs are filled with anguish and regrets. They recall the ruins of Zion, (i.e., Jerusalem), and the ridicule of their Babylonian
captors. One reviews the rebellious history of Israel. From Egypt to Babylon, Israel constantly butted heads with their God. Their rebellion resulted in suffering, wanderings, plagues, captivity, and death. It's important to remember that though you may find these songs very sad, they can actually have a positive impact on your life. So take the time
to read these carefully. If you ever wonder what indifference, complacency, and stubbornness can do, you get a pretty good idea from these songs. They have a lot to say about what your rebellion does to you and to God. Today, let these songs warn you of what a hard heart can lead to. Let these songs, today, urge you to surrender and submit to your Lord. (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Sept 18-(Psalm 44, 74, 79, 80, 85, 89) "God's Dove" Things are not good in Israel. These psalms were written after Babylon invaded The Promised Land. The temple in Jerusalem lies in rubble. Patches of people live here and there. So the psalmist writes as he reflects the history of God's people. He remembers the glory days and the rebellion that led to captivity. But these psalms convey even more than that. They offer a glimmer of hope. One writer refers to God’s people as God's dove. He sings: How can God turn back His love from His dove? Great question! The answer is simple and clear. God cannot turn away from His dove… and He won't turn away from you! Yes, you can make a mess of things. And yes, life can crumble beneath you; but God can never, and will never, stop loving you. Why not? When He looks at you, He sees His cherished dove. Today, dwell on the message of these psalms and know God isn't interested in crushing you. He is interested in changing you. For you are His dove!
Sept 17-(Job 38:1-42:17) "The Lord In The Storm" The sky darkens... Lighting flashes in the sky... Peals of thunder shake the earth... A storm is coming... Job lifts his eyes to the sky. The Lord speaks in the storm. Hmmm... The Lord often speaks in the storms. Why? Storms get your attention. People are most willing to listen when they are in a storm. Job has been through a hurricane of suffering. So when God speaks, Job puts his hand over his mouth. All he can do is repent of his humanness... all he can do is turn from his foolishness. For, Job is like you. You are a mere human. You really have no control. You only control one thing... your response to life. That's all. Are you in a storm? If so, God is speaking to you. Are you listening to what God is saying? For, God will remind you in the storms of life that He IS in control and you are not. That's the reality you need to accept. When you do, life will make more sense, and you can relax. Today, trust in the Lord and not in yourself. For, you are not capable to meet all your needs… and God IS! (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Sept 16-(Job 32:1-37:24) "Elihu" While three of Job's so called friends confront him, a young man sits in the group in silence. For days, he hasn't uttered a single word. Finally, Elihu can't stand it another minute. He starts talking... and keeps talking and talking without saying much of anything. Besides bragging about himself, Elihu's message is no different than the other three. He too thinks Job is blind with arrogance and puffed up with pride. He says, "How dare you talk like you are innocent." Well, Job isn't innocent. He never claimed to be. All Job has been saying is that he didn't do anything to deserve the punishment he assumes has come from God. Job is complaining! But it's more about his misery than his God. You could say Job is saying "ouch" more than anything. But Elihu is empty of any empathy. He just keeps rambling on about a whole lotta nothin'. Later, God would remind Elihu and the other three how ridiculous they are. Today, let Elihu remind you that no one knows everything. Let his blunder encourage you to evaluate how you treat others who are going through a tough time. Let Elihu's lack of empathy and understanding motivate you not to be so hardhearted with others, and be a little more understanding of what they may be going through. Who could use some understanding from you right now? (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Sept 15-(Job 29-31) "Job" Job starts to look at his glory days in the past. The respect and admiration of others, he once enjoyed, is gone. He remembers the good times with family and friends. Life was good... Misery will do this... He recognizes that God was the source of all his prosperity and happiness. But now, Job believes God is no longer watching over him. His misery makes it feel like God is miles away. But God has not moved an inch. Can you identify with Job? Have there been times you felt all alone in your misery. In those moments did you assume God was miles away? Well, God was with you the whole time. He's with you right now! Job will eventually figure this out. So it's vital that you figure this out too. You see, it's important that your suffering not be wasted through self pity. Today, believe that your problems now have a greater purpose. Realize that God is still with you! He hasn't gone anywhere. He promises to bring something good out of the bad you experience. So hang in there!!! Let this encourage you to persevere through your seasons of suffering. (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Sept 14-(Job 22:1-24:25) "Job" As Job's friends continue to ride him with accusations, Job opens up with how he is feeling. He wonders where God is in all this. He can't quite figure out why he is going through problem after problem. He knows he can't control anything that's happening. He knows God is in charge. He knows that God is fair. But Job knows something else. Something that his friends have overlooked. He knows that life is a series of one problem following another. He knows that after it's all over, he will come out on the other side like purified gold. You see, Job believes there is purpose in his problems. That's why his character is upright. That's why he walks close to God. For, only God can get him through the toughest of times and make him like refined gold. How about you? What are you choosing to believe when you face your trouble today? Will your problems refine you, or will they fill you with resentment? Today, accept the fact that problems will be a normal part of your life. Admit that you have no control of anything except your response. Let your response be to trust the love and fairness of God; for He sees deep into your heart. Nothing escapes His notice. He knows what you are really about. He sees the good in you. And He is determined to use the crisis you face to purify and bring out the best in you; but only if you refuse to give up! Persevere!!! Persevere!!! (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Sept 13-(Job 19) "Job" Life has not been good for Job... His family and friends have disowned him. His dignity has been stripped away. His clout is all gone! No one honors him because no one respects him. People are laughing behind his back. Even his servants are ignoring his commands. Job still believes God is behind it. Yet, Job longs for a day when he will see his God with his own eyes. He is overwhelmed with excitement over the thought of meeting his God face to face! His respect for God stays intact as he expresses his disappointment to his friends. Job will not reject God simply because life isn't working out like he wanted. In fact, it appears that Job's faith is getting stronger!! How are you doing today? Has life blindsided you? Is something causing you to have some doubts about how much God loves you? If so, take heart!! God still loves you! Look forward to the day God will meet you face to face. Let your hope in Him fill you with great excitement… and press on!! (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Sept 12-(Job 16) "The Intercessor" Job's friends have been little to no help. All they are able to do is accuse and condemn. But for some reason, Job has hope. Why? He believes he has a true friend who understands. His intercessor stands beside him and pleads his case to God. This gives Job some sense of peace in the middle of his turmoil. Though there may be times you feel like you don't have a single friend in the world, you also have an intercessor. Your friend stands before God and speaks on your behalf. He tells his father all the good things about you. He vouches for you. This makes God look to you with great favor. Who is this intercessor? It's Jesus! Today, be at peace when you experience turmoil and hardship. For, Jesus stands between you and your God to bring you closer together. (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Sept 11-(Job 11:1-14:22) "Zophar" Another friend of Job speaks up. This time it's Zophar. He continues along the same lines as Eliphaz and Bildad. He, too, is convinced that Job's sin is the real source of his pain and suffering. He chastises Job for being overconfident. Zophar believes Job hasn't a clue when it comes to God. He urges Job to repent and call on the Lord; that way, his life will be restored and secure. Again, there is merit to what Job's friends are saying, but their observations don't apply to their suffering friend. So Job fires back! He tells them they have a lot to learn. He makes it clear that he doesn't deserve what he's getting. Job still believes he is right with God. In fact, he adds that if The Lord were to slay him, he would be just as devoted to God as he ever was. Like many, Job is a little confused too. He assumes God is behind his misfortune, but He's not. God is not sending lightning bolts from heaven, or bad luck to Job. Remember, it's Satan who’s attacking Job! But Job resists the devil, and keeps going forward. Look... not all the bad things that happen to you are your fault. Bad things can happen for a number of reasons. So it's important to be honest, objective, and quick to own your mistakes. It's also important to trust God's grace, and enjoy the security God's love gives. Zophar doesn't seem to have it. Today, be willing to look deep into your heart. Ask God to help you see your sin. But also ask God to help you see His deep love for you. Today, trust God's grace, and let His love motivate you to serve Him with a growing sense of eternal security. (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Sept 10-(Job 8:1-10:22) "Bildad" Another friend of Job breaks his silence and speaks up. Bildad is making a common point in religious circles. Bildad builds a case that Job deserves the hardship he is experiencing. Bildad believes it must be Job's sin that is at the root of his trouble. He is basically telling Job, "You reap what you sow." This is a powerful principle of life. It's found in scripture too. The problem with Bildad's point is that it's not true. Though Job and his family have experienced dreadful events, it has nothing to do with their sin. Job, like anyone else, has sin in his life; but it's Satan who is behind Job’s trouble. This can confuse people from time to time. It takes integrity and wisdom to know the difference. Are you having some trouble? Do you know someone who is going through a season of suffering? What do you think is at the root of your/their suffering? Is the source a personal sin, or could it be a personal attack from hell? Today, think carefully what is behind the seasons of hardship. Make sure your relationship with God is good. If you discover that Satan is attacking you, don't be so quick throw away your faith and give up. Be patient; persevere and trust the Lord! Like all seasons, it will pass.
Sept 9-(Job 4-7) "Eliphaz" Friends gather around Job... For days, they sit with him in silence. Though they don't say a word, the wheels in their minds are turning. They look at their friend and try to make some sense of it all. Then one of Job's buddies starts to speak. Eliphaz thinks he knows why this is happening to Job. "It must be your sin!” he observes. Eliphaz concludes, "Job, buddy ole' pal, things are bad because you are bad." But this is not the case. Eliphaz doesn't have all the facts. He is assuming some things... Eliphaz is way off! This discourages Job. When you look at others in their suffering, do you look with a critical eye, or with care? Do you have all the facts? Are you compassionate and understanding? Or down deep inside, do you harbor cold and critical thoughts? Yes, personal sin can cause suffering, and often does! But a broken world can cause it too. Some suffering has nothing to do with personal sin. Sometimes, it's Satan who is behind it all. So what kind of friend will you be when those you know are going through a season of suffering? Today, don't jump to conclusions. Don't be so quick to criticize. Be caring. Have some compassion. Be like Christ and make sure they know you love them. (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Sept 8-(Job 1:1-3:26) "Job" It's one of the most perplexing moments in your life. The times when life is out of your control. The moments when life takes a turn for the worse. You brush up against death... a disease... devastation... maybe a divorce. It's in painful moments you are reminded of how fragile your life can be. It's in these valleys of despair you tend to ask yourself, "why me?” Job is having a bad day!! He loses his family and fortune. His health rapidly declines. His friends wince at the sight of him. It's enough to make you wish you'd never been born! But Job doesn't blame God. Though he is very confused, he accepts the bad with the good. Yes, he will have a lot of questions for his creator. Who wouldn't? But Job still believes in the goodness of God. He still believes he is in His mighty hands. Maybe that's what it's really about—you believing you are still in God's hands. Whatever you are going through today, trust your God. Go ahead and ask your questions… and expect God to answer. (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Sept 7-(Ezekiel 29:17-21; Daniel 4:1-37) "Nebuchadnezzar" He is at the top of his game. He is the king of the hill. But he has forgotten the key to his success. Nebuchadnezzar has forgotten that God has given him his victories. So God humbles the most powerful man on earth. As a result, Nebuchadnezzar is humiliated, driven away from his people, and lives in seclusion like a wild animal. It's hard to imagine something like this happening to anyone so popular and powerful, but it happens. It's not until Nebuchadnezzar humbles himself and recognizes that Jehovah is supreme over all, that his life is restored. Pride is the downfall of many a man! God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble. How about you? Is pride and arrogance hardening your heart and head? What are you receiving from the Lord today? Is he having to take you down a couple of notches to remind you that you aren't as hot as you think? Are you walking humbly before God? Are you listening to godly counsel? Today, acknowledge God's sovereignty over you! Humble yourself before God… and He will lift you up!
Sept 6-(Ezekiel 44:4-48:35) "The Church" Ezekiel's vision continues to the end of the book. All kinds of instructions and details concerning the use of the new temple are given. For a lot of Christians, these chapters have a reputation of carrying little meaning. But as you look closer into the text, you get a flavor of the Book Of Revelation. As you read today's chapters, a few ideas pop off the pages. For, Ezekiel is being shown what God's Kingdom will be like when the Messiah finally comes. God's Kingdom will be huge! It will cover the entire earth. Service and sacrifice will be the normal way to live in God's Kingdom (His church) too. Continual sacrifices encourage the idea of constant forgiveness. Isn't that what Jesus brought from heaven? The church is a place filled with servants (priests) that serve God and each other. God is building His church today to be a place for everyone from anywhere. You are involved in building The Lord's church too. You are part of this special place. Are you doing all you can to build The Lord's church? Today, figure out what you can do to make The Church stronger and more effective on this earth. (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Sept 5-(Ezekiel 40-44) "The Restored" About 15 years have passed since the destruction of Jerusalem. The city is a pile of rubble. It's been a long time since the people have offered sacrifices at the temple. In another vision, God reveals a future building project to Ezekiel. The prophet sees a newly built temple that is a thousand times larger than the temple Solomon built. To give you some perspective, the new temple covers nearly 4000 square miles! Its rooms are spacious, completely furnished and ready to go. Is God planning to literally build this? No... So what is God revealing to Ezekiel? God is giving Ezekiel an idea of how His kingdom will someday be. Jesus will bring a new 'temple' to the earth. It will have room for everyone, and sacrifice will be at its core. The cross will usher in a way of life that is devoted to pleasing God. It will be a temple built with stones of living people (1 Peter 2:5). Today, this temple covers the earth. You are a part of this incredible promise. You now experience a new and living way (Hebrews 10:20). Today, enjoy living in the presence of God. Appreciate how God has restored your life from rubble. Be thankful that Christ made room in His temple for you. The time to worship Him has come! Be a living sacrifice!! Dedicate today to pleasing Him.
Sept 4-(Daniel 3) "The Son Of The Gods" Three men take a stand for their God. Three men refuse to bow. Three men trust the Lord. Three men face the consequences! And when Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego fall into the flames, they are delivered by The Lord! By taking such a stand, Nebuchadnezzar starts to believe too! More than ever, Christians around the globe are facing moments where they must take a stand. Christians must start refusing to bow to the peer pressure in the workplace and their community. Maybe you are facing a moment like this. Are you facing pressures to lie, cheat, hate, or fit-in? If so, trust the Lord! Yes, the consequences may be serious; the consequences could be dangerous. But don't let this discourage you from standing up for the Lord. For, when you take a stand, you encourage others to trust the Lord too. Today, stand up for Christ. Don’t let the consequences keep you from being faithful. Strive to please God! For, you can be sure that THE Son of God will deliver you!
Sept 3-(Ezekiel 33:1-20) "The Watchman" What do you do when you see someone heading for trouble? You notice something isn't quite right. Maybe it's their attitude... Maybe it's the absence... You are not quite sure what it is, but you know something’s wrong. Do you speak up? Do you warn them? What if they were to think you're being foolish? What if they were to become angry with you? Would you still speak up? You should!! God reminds Ezekiel of his responsibility to others. Ezekiel is to be a watchman. This means he has the back of God's people. God makes it clear that if Ezekiel ignores his mission, the blood of those he should have warned will be on his own head! Are you caring enough about others to speak up when you see them heading for trouble? Who needs you to speak up right now? It doesn't matter if they will listen or not. What matters is that you speak up and say something before it’s too late. It's what God would want you to do. Today, don't be afraid to help others in trouble. Love them by telling them the truth. Be bold! Who knows? You may save someone from the costly effects of sin and a lifetime of heartache. (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Sept 2-(Ezekiel 37) "Mr. Bones" Ezekiel is having a vision from God. He is in a dry valley. Dry bones lie all around him. God asks Ezekiel a question: "Do you think these bones can live again?" Ezekiel says, "That's up to you, Lord." Just about then God does something interesting. He commands Ezekiel to speak His Word to the bones. When Ezekiel starts speaking, the bones begin to come together! Soon, they stand before him alive!! Kinda creepy, huh? God explains that the dry bones represent the hopeless state of Israel. They have slowly died as a nation. Yet, God brings them to life when someone is willing to speak God's Word into them. This is true today! Whenever you bring God's Word into any situation, you bring new life! Who could use the Word of God from you? Ezekiel spoke up; Will you? Today, try to speak God's Word into the lives of those you work with or meet. If you do, you will witness God working powerfully… right before your eyes! (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)
Sept 1-(Ezekiel 34) "The Shepherd" He guards over his flock. He knows each of his sheep by name. He leads them to green pastures and clear streams of water. He gently leads those with young. He calls, and his sheep run to him. He sleeps with a club in his hand. If a predator attacks, he is quick to fight to the death. Why does he do this? He loves his flock very much. They are on his mind all the time. This is how God feels about you! The Lord is your shepherd. Though you are one of millions in His great flock, He knows you by name. He thinks about you all the time. He keeps track of you because He cares. He gently leads you. Every once in a while He prods you with His staff to get you moving. If by chance you are missing, He is the first to go and search. He would die for you!! Today, think about the shepherd of your soul. Be grateful for His care. Listen for His voice. Obey His call. Enjoy His love. (CLICK to share your thoughts with me!)