Posts from September 2021

DAILY DEVOTIONS – TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 28, 2021

Deuteronomy 5:22 (NIV)  These are the commandments the Lord proclaimed in a loud voice to your whole assembly there on the mountain from out of the fire, the cloud, and the deep darkness; and he added nothing more.  Then he wrote them on two stone tablets and gave them to me.  God spoke out of the fire, out of the cloud, and out of thick darkness (deep gloom, RSV).  His word came in spoken form and in written form.  Have…

DAILY DEVOTIONS – MONDAY SEPTEMBER 27, 2021

Deuteronomy 5:1 (NIV)  Moses summoned all Israel and said:  “Hear, O Israel, the decrees and laws I declare in your hearing today.  Learn them and be sure to follow them.  The Lord our God made a covenant with us at Horeb.  It was not with our fathers that the Lord made this covenant, but with all, with all of us who are alive here today.”  Moses was repeating the Law of God to a generation which had grown up in…

DAILY DEVOTIONS – SATURDAY SEPTEMBER 25, 2021

Matthew 4:23 (NIV)  Jesus went throughout Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the good news of the kingdom, and healing every disease and sickness among the people.  Christ’s miracles drew multitudes.  People listened to Him as long as they saw miracles.  But later in His ministry, as He drew near to the cross, He performed fewer miracles and preached more about discipleship.  Once, after his message on the high cost of discipleship, many followers walked away (John 6).  He turned…

DAILY DEVOTIONS – FRIDAY SEPTEMBER 24, 2021

Isaiah 66:1-2 (NIV)  This is what the Lord says:  “Heaven is my throne and the earth is my footstool…This is the one I esteem: he who is humble and contrite in spirit, and trembles at my word.”   The heaven is His throne and the earth is His footstool; yet, God chooses to live in the hearts of humble believers who faithfully obey His Word.  Think of it!  His greatest delight is you!  In a world filled with doubt, sarcasm…

DAILY DEVOTIONS – THURSDAY SEPTEMBER 23, 2021

Isaiah 55:10-11 (NIV)  As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, so is my word that goes out from my mouth; it will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.  What a wonderful metaphor for the…

DAILY DEVOTIONS – TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 21, 2021

Isaiah 55:3 (NIV)  Give ear and come to me; hear me, that your soul may live… This passage speaks of spiritual poverty and thirst (vs. 1).  We live such hectic lives that all too often we overlook our deep inner hunger for God.  We forget how much we need Him.  We invest so much of our time and energy in things that do not have eternal value.  God invites us to come empty handed to His table of provision.  There…

DAILY DEVOTIONS – MONDAY SEPTEMBER 20, 2021

Isaiah 40:31 (KJV)  They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.   “Weary and faint persons can face the difficulties of life when they live in God, for they are renewed in their strength by the Creator’s limitless strength” (Hayford Bible Handbook).  Patient waiting, done in God’s presence, produces quiet confidence.  He will trigger peace and…

DAILY DEVOTIONS – SATURDAY SEPTEMBER 18, 2021

Exodus 20:8 (NIV)  Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy.  “The Sabbath is a way of defying slavery.  Slaves, by definition, cannot stop working.  Sabbath is living in such as way that we are no longer slaves.  The Israelites had spent 300 years or so assimilating into the dominant cultural value system of Egypt.  Generations had succumbed to never ceasing from work.  It was normal to work all the time.  The bustling and ever-increasing economy of Egypt demanded nonstop…

DAILY DEVOTIONS – FRIDAY SEPTEMBER 17, 2021

Proverbs 3:13 (NIV) Blessed is the man who finds wisdom, the man who gains understanding.  Are we listening for the Lord’s direction and clarification?  “One of the striking characteristics seen in effective leaders is their drive to learn from all kinds of sources.”  Effective leaders maintain a learning/listening posture throughout life.  “The Bible is the leadership anchor.  A Christian leader bases values, methodology, motivation, and goals on what God has revealed in Scripture.” (Clinton, The Making of a Leader).  God…

DAILY DEVOTIONS – THURSDAY SEPTEMBER 16, 2021

Acts 10:28b (NLT)  …But God has shown me that I should no longer think of anyone as impure or unclean.  At the Global Leadership Summit 2019, Danielle Strickland described five stages of transition: 1) Settled (feels good); 2) Unsettled (stressful disruption); 3) Chaos (you’ve left what you know but aren’t to the new place yet—it is scary, yet exciting); 4) Arrival at the new place (but doesn’t feel like home); and 5) the new normal (finally).  The journey from stage…

DAILY DEVOTIONS – WEDNESDAY SEPTEMBER 15, 2021

Hebrews 3:15-19 (The Message)  For who were the people who turned a deaf ear?  Weren’t they the very ones Moses led out of Egypt?…Wasn’t it those who turned a deaf ear and ended up corpses in the wilderness?  They never got there because they never listened, never believed.   “People in recovery circles use some very helpful phrases to describe the kind of behavior that keeps us from experiencing freedom (or for settling for external freedom while still experiencing slavery…

DAILY DEVOTIONS – TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 14, 2021

John 3:30 (KJV)  He must increase, but I must decrease.   Our great heroes of the faith lived through some kind of desert experience—an emptying place.  The devil is ok with us  “leaving Egypt” as long as we bring all of Egypt’s values and systems with us.  He lets us be a Christian as long as we live like everyone else, full of ourselves.  Philippians 2 tells us that Jesus emptied Himself in order to embrace His calling to save…

DAILY DEVOTIONS – MONDAY SEPTEMBER 13, 2021

Luke 22:31-32a (NIV)  “Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift you as wheat.  But I have prayed for you…  “Quality leadership does not come easily.  It requires time, experience, and repeated instances of maturity processing.”  Such was the experience of the disciples as they followed Jesus.  There was much to learn.  They thought that proximity to Jesus was enough.  But  “Mature ministry flows from a mature character, formed in the graduate school of life…a leader whose ministry skills outstrip his…

DAILY DEVOTIONS – SATURDAY SEPTEMBER 11, 2021

Deuteronomy 4:32-40 (focus verse 39b) The Lord is God both in heaven and on earth, and there is no other.   Read this entire passage in the NIV or NLT version.  It is powerful.  Oh, that we would see God for who He truly is!  How has He been faithful in your life?  What has He brought you out of and into?  How have you seen His  “outstretched arm” and  “awesome deeds”?  How have you heard His voice?  How has…

DAILY DEVOTIONS – FRIDAY SEPTEMBER 10, 2021

Deuteronomy 4:29-31 (focus verse 29 NLT)  But if from there you seek the Lord your God, you will find Him if you look for Him with all your heart and with all your soul.   God knew the days would come when Israel would go astray and want to be like the other nations who had a king, who lived apart from the laws of God.  Their resistance to God would lead to the loss of His overshadowing protection, the…

DAILY DEVOTIONS – THURSDAY SEPTEMBER 9, 2021

Deuteronomy 4:15-28 (focus verse 23 NIV)  Be careful not to forget the covenant of the Lord your God that He made with you; do not make for yourselves an idol in the form of anything the Lord your God has forbidden.  Moses warned Israel against the dangers of idolatry and its consequences.  In our day it is astonishing to see people bowing down to worship before man-made images, “gods of wood and stone which cannot see or hear or eat…

DAILY DEVOTIONS – WEDNESDAY SEPTEMBER 8, 2021

Deuteronomy 4:1-2 (NIV) Hear now, O Israel, the decrees and laws I am about to teach you.  Follow them so that you may live and may go in and take possession of the land that the Lord, the God of your fathers, is giving you.  Do not add to what I command you and do not subtract from it, but keep the commands of the Lord your God that I give you.  Continued possession of the Promised Land was contingent…

DAILY DEVOTIONS – TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 7, 2021

Deuteronomy 3:27a-28 (NLT)  …Take a good look, but you may not cross the Jordan River.  Instead, commission Joshua and encourage and strengthen him, for he will lead the people across the Jordan.  He will give them all the land you now see before you as their possession.  Joshua’s confidence for his mission rested on three realities: 1) It was a holy charge, a divine commission; 2) God’s faithful performance in the past provided courage for the future; and 3) God…

DAILY DEVOTIONS – SATURDAY SEPTEMBER 4, 2021

Deuteronomy 3:19-20 (focus verse 20b)  After that, each man may return to the land I’ve given you here.   God was instructing the people:  “Go to battle for your brothers and help them win their land on that side of the Jordan, THEN you can settle down into this land on this side of the Jordan—your wives and children and livestock will be here waiting for you.”  What does this teach us?  “We are not to rest content with our…

DAILY DEVOTIONS – FRIDAY SEPTEMBER 3, 2021

Deuteronomy 3:18b (NLT)  …all your able-bodied men, armed for battle, must cross over ahead of your brother Israelites…  “Courage is not enough, we need to be adequately  ‘armed.’”  We must be biblically literate.  We must be socially engaged.  We must be filled with the Spirit.  We must be alert to cultural shifts.  We must be intuitive to peoples’  hearts.  If the Kingdom of God is to expand, we are His soldiers and we must be armed appropriately.  Are you involved…

DAILY DEVOTIONS – THURSDAY SEPTEMBER 2, 2021

Deuteronomy 3:2-4 (focus verse 4 NIV)  The Lord said to me, “Do not be afraid of him, for I have handed him over to you with his whole army and his land…”   The conquest of Canaan rested on the promises of God but did not exclude human exertion.  “Complete victory can be achieved only by complete obedience.  Defeating an enemy is not sufficient in itself; the promised possession must also be claimed and occupied.”  God’s goal for us goes…