Devotions

Devotions

DEVOTIONS – MONDAY SEPTEMBER 16, 2019

John 15:16 (NIV) –  You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit—fruit that will last… The term  “apostle”  means:  “one sent forth”  (Luke 10:1).  Jesus did not send out His twelve disciples without preparing them through specific methods and means—principles that He continues to use today to prepare those He has chosen for Christ-centered ministries.  Some go without being called and without a message from God;  they are self-sent  (II Sam.…

DEVOTIONS – SATURDAY SEPTEMBER 14, 2019

Joshua 1:9 – (NLT) Do not be afraid or discouraged.  For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.  Confront your fears with the truth of God’s presence. Our core fear is that we can’t handle something—we’re not enough.  God doesn’t expect us to handle anything on our own.  He says,  “I’ve got this.”  Our ability is His strength.  His constant presence is the greater truth that confronts our ultimate fear.  Focus on God’s abilities,  not your inabilities.

DEVOTIONS – FRIDAY SEPTEMBER 13, 2019

Galatians 6:4b (MSG)  Don’t compare yourself with others.   Comparison triggers the fear that you don’t measure up and you are not enough.  “It robs us of seeing the value in our influence and keeps us on a perpetual quest to be better than others”  (Jenni Catron,  Clout).  What drives your motivation to do great things—God-given vision,  or the need to impress people?  These are two very different motivations.  In the Lord’s final conversation with Peter,  Peter asked,  “What about…

DEVOTIONS – THURSDAY SEPTEMBER 12, 2019

Proverbs 27:4 – (NLT)  Anger is cruel,  and wrath is like a flood,  but jealousy is even more dangerous.  Illustrations of jealousy are replete in scripture:  Cain killed his brother,  Jacob robbed Esau of his birthright,  Rachel and Leah lived at odds with each other,  Saul put out a death warrant on David’s life—“in each of these stories jealousy took root and ruined their relationships.  Jealousy becomes more sophisticated as we mature,  and its root system is strengthened with every…

DEVOTIONS – WEDNESDAY SEPTEMBER 11, 2019

Philippians 2:3 – (NIV)  Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit,  but in humility consider others better than yourselves. (MSG)  Don’t push your way to the front;  don’t sweet-talk your way to the top.  Put yourself aside,  and help others get ahead.   “Carrying this out in real life requires an inbred core devoid of pretention and arrogance.  It does not allow for posturing or a show of self-importance.  When those kinds of selfish traits are present,  problems and…

DEVOTIONS – TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 10, 2019

John 15:4 (MSG) –  “Live in me.  Make your home in me just as I do in you…”   In his book,  The Furious Longing of God,  Brennan Manning says,  “The outstretched arms of Jesus exclude no one,  neither the drunk in the doorway,  the panhandler on the street,  gays and lesbians in their isolation,  the most selfish and ungrateful in their cocoons,  the most unjust of employers and the most overweening of snobs.  The love of Christ embraces all…

DEVOTIONS – MONDAY SEPTEMBER 9, 2019

Matthew 7:26 (MSG) –  (Jesus teaching)  “But if you just use my words in the Bible studies and don’t work them into your life,  you are like a stupid carpenter who built his house on the sandy beach.”  In his book,  Abba’s Child,  Brennan Manning says,  “The Christian commitment is not an abstraction.  It is a concrete,  visible,  courageous,  and formidable way of being in the world forged by daily choices consistent with inner truth.  A commitment that is not…

DEVOTIONS – SATURDAY SEPTEMBER 7, 2019

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…

DEVOTIONS – FRIDAY SEPTEMBER 6, 2019

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…

DEVOTIONS – THURSDAY SEPTEMBER 5, 2019

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…

DEVOTIONS – WEDNESDAY SEPTEMBER 4, 2019

Hebrews 3:15-19 – (MSG) 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…

DEVOTIONS – TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 3, 2019

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…