May 31, 2020
Word of the day: 9 My eyes are dim with grief. I call to you, Lord, every day; I spread out my hands to you. Psalm 88:9 NIV
Meditation: How are you feeling today? There is a lot of grief. Take time to grieve and reflect. How can we involve God?
Discussion Board: Can I be honest? I am hurt, devastated, concern, and have the need to speak out. I will do that on a different blog. There are all kinds of grief going on in the world today. How do you handle it? Do you allow God to be a part of your grieving? It can be hard to depend on God when times are tough, and you have to speak out. The reality is, at some point, we need to speak out to God because he can take on revenge in a way that we can’t. We should take time to find generosity in God to be grateful. I see a prayer in my Wisdom book I would like to share on this devotional. It explains more than I can right now. “Merciful Father, when I’m going through tough times, I don’t usually feel like praying or praising your name. Strengthen me during those times and help me remember that you always deserve praise. That is the prayer today I am praying for all of you.
Takeaway: During our struggle, we have a divided nation that is not going well. Different thoughts, different opinions, but there is a problem with expressing feelings to the wrong platform. All of our discussions can be talked to by Jesus. He can help with our wise words and shine in useful ways. What are your takeaways?
May 30, 2020
Word of the day: 32 When Mary reached the place where Jesus was and saw him, she fell at his feet and said, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.” John 11:32 NIV
Meditation: Take a moment and think about a time where God showed up right on time. How did you praise him?
Discussion Board: Mary fell at Jesus’ feet when she praised him for bringing her brother back to life. Jesus’ perfect timing shows how good he is at our plans for our life. Jesus’ plans for us shouldn’t have any doubt. Sometimes we don’t have the words to praise Jesus for what he does for us. I am sure Mary felt that way because she admired him at his feet and said a few words. We should remember when Jesus does things on his timing, we shouldn’t have any what-if scenarios. Let us have thankful moments of celebrations and praise.
Takeaway: Be thankful for what Jesus does for you. Praise and celebrate for the love Jesus has for you. What are your takeaways?
Prayer: Father, thank you for our fellowship. Thank you for your love for us in your timing. We praise and love you for all you do. Thank you for your passion. In Jesus’ name. Amen!
May 29, 2020
Word of the day: 11 Teach me your way, Lord, that I may rely on your faithfulness; give me an undivided heart, that I may fear your name. Psalm 86:11 NIV
Meditation: What exactly does fear your name mean? Take a moment and meditate on those words. What does it take to fear the Lord?
Discussion Board: David was praying a simple prayer for anybody in deep trouble. Prayer is the time to go to God with all your problems. To fear the Lord means to fear him in a way that you can follow him. For example, following the ten commandments. The number one priority is making sure we do not break the ten commandments. We should be afraid to break those commandments, and if we feel the urge to break it, go to God and pray about it. It’s not fear as a self-centered attitude, but fear as in faithful to him that you are willing to do things for him, and it should not be a second thought. We follow God for divine truth, the right way to lead. God is the truth and the way to lead us all in life. God does not give us the power to be all we can be, but all we can be for him. Following him, being faithful helps us to be influential in God’s name and not our own.
Takeaway: We all have problems, and we can’t take them on when we have our Lord and Savior that can take on our issues. The question is, will you let him take all of it for you? Will you live in fear for the Lord to allow him to take your situations? Will you live undivided towards others and not show favoritism? What are your takeaways?
Prayer: Father, thank you for our fellowship. I pray for the fear for you is good and not bad fear. Let us realize that the concern for you is not fear base scared, but based on trusting you with love and faithfulness. Let our hearts continue to be undivided for you. Thank you for your passion. In Jesus’ name. Amen!
May 28, 2020
Word of the day: 27 My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. 28 I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one will snatch them out of my hand. John 10:27-28 NIV
Meditation: Take a moment and reflect on these words: My sheep listen to my voice, [I] know them, and [they] follow me. You know when your children are talking and other family members. How do you recognize when Jesus is talking?
Discussion Board: This verse may not be a rhetorical saying based on the sheep listening to Jesus, but this speaks volumes to how much truth is in this verse. The sheep can recognize Jesus’ voice, and we can identify our family members or close friends talking without having to look at them. The sheep know the right sound to hear and do not have to question if they should follow that voice or not. There are so many things to be afraid of on Earth because this is where the devil lives. The more important news is to be able to know Jesus’ voice while on Earth to survive the devil’s tactics. Jesus will give you safety if you know his voice and follow him often. You commit to following Jesus, and he will make sure you are not the person left behind the Earth’s madness.
Takeaway: It’s simple. We know Jesus’ voice, we follow Jesus’ voice, and we are with Jesus’ forever. Follow Satan’s voice, and we know his commitment to making sure we are far away from Jesus. Take the time to remember Jesus’ voice by following him in the word. What are your takeaways?
Prayer: Father, thank you for our fellowship. I’m praying for us as we go about our day. It is difficult to shake a lot of things Satan brings to us. I pray for our continued commitment to stay with you, regardless. If we stray, I pray we can come back to you more durable than ever. Thank you for your love. In Jesus’ name. Amen!
May 27, 2020
Word of the day: 9 David then took up residence in the fortress and called it the City of David. He built up the area around it, from the terraces inward. 10 And he became more and more powerful because the Lord God Almighty was with him. 2 Samuel 5:9-10 NIV
Meditation: Let’s think about protection. Is God protecting your home? He is making you a more influential person even if you don’t feel secure?
Discussion Board: The word fortress is a military stronghold, especially a strongly fortified town fit for a large garrison. Like most of us, David didn’t feel strong or unstoppable. The reason he was strong is because of God. God stayed with him the whole way. The fortress, as we learned, is a stronghold. Once he took residence there, that made him more robust than he anticipated. We may not feel safe in our homes, but God can make our homes secure if we allow him to and keep a relationship with him. Nobody can’t take that away from you. In the book of 2 Samuel, David’s house grew stronger. The home of Saul became weaker. Why is that? The ongoing war between David’s followers and the troops loyal to Abner and Ish-Bosheth went on because Israel and Judah lost sight of God’s vision and purpose. They never came together to solve problems; they continue to fight about it.
Takeaway: We don’t give ourselves enough credit for God’s work. When we don’t feel secure, we go the other way and feel weak. There is no confidence in God’s work. When we disagree with things with our enemies, we don’t find common ground to work things out in the eyes of the Lord. What are your takeaways?
Prayer: Father, thank you for today. I pray for our protection. We may never feel secure, but you make us strong without us seeing how confident we are. I pray we can work out common ground with our enemies and have the confidence to do it. Thank you for our fellowship. In Jesus’ name. Amen!
May 26, 2020
Word of the day: 31 We know that God does not listen to sinners. He listens to the godly person who does his will. John 9:31 NIV
Meditation: Give yourself time to reflect on your past for a moment. Has God listened to you? How do you know? If he hasn’t listened, what can you do to hear him? If you believe he hears you, what can you do to improve your relationship with him and monitor?
Discussion Board: God has his way of getting our attention. It takes quiet time to understand this. Where do you stand in your relationship with God? Is he answering your prayers as requested? Or do you feel he is ignoring you? Let’s talk Sodom and Gomorrah for a minute. God was speaking to Sodom and Gomorrah, but no one was listening. No one wanted to be righteous. Abraham did everything he could to save the wicked people. God agreed to spare the entire city if ten honest people lived there. God also showed mercy towards Lot. Lot is the only person that had some sort of relationship with God. God shows patience towards Lot. God is fair towards Sodom and Gomorrah, even though many people do not believe he was. For many years, there are temptations, a sin that went through, and people talk about God being unfair? Is it fair when we are not quiet? God’s attention is more on the righteous and the cries. When we go against God, we won’t get answers. The way to get back on the right track is confession. We can’t hide our sins from God, so it’s better if you are honest. That is an insult to God to think you can hide. When Sodom and Gomorrah lived their wicked ways, they were not careful of the words that came out of them. They expressed their thoughts without weighing out how it affects others. Sodom and Gomorrah weren’t thinking of God, which is why God destroyed it for failure to acknowledge wickedness. Confession is essential to stay with God. Prayer first, if you don’t feel forgiven, then communion is the next best option.
Takeaway: To be faithful to God, we must stick close to him when sin and temptation hint at us. If we fail at it, confess it. It’s better than hiding. You can’t hide your wickedness and expect God not to know about it. You are better off confessing and let him in your heart to help you. We can’t ignore God’s patience when we are trying to turn ourselves around. What are your takeaways?
Prayer: Father, thank you for our fellowship. I pray we can get back on track when we are wrong. Let us stay with you when we are wrong. We can’t hide from you. Confessing is the best thing we can do to continue to have a healthy relationship with you. Thank you for your love. In Jesus’ name. Amen!
May 25, 2020
Word of the day: 11 For the Lord God is a sun and shield; The Lord will give grace and glory; No good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly. 12 O Lord of hosts, Blessed is the man who trusts in You! Psalm 84:11-12 NIV
Reflect: When was the last time God moved you in a different direction than you were not expecting? Did it make you angry? Were you trying to figure out why he didn’t give it to you?
Discussion Board: Here is a fact. God does not promise anything to us based on the things we want. It may not be suitable for you for the items you want. He will walk with you along the paths to get you where he wants you positioned. When we obey, we will get what we need to serve him. God is the light that shines. We follow him for light to shine upon us when we are helping him. What is in the dark will come to light: good results or bad results. Sin is always seeable through God because he can see the darkness and the day. In the book of Genesis, God had to remind Abram not to be afraid. Abram was fearful because he believed that the kings would get revenge for being defeated (14:15). God told Abram not to be scared for two reasons. One, God is his shield; there is nothing to be afraid of when God is your shield. Two, Abram would be rewarded for his behavior. Stay with God for rewards for being reliable and courageous. If you feel something is off, like you don’t have everything, ask God these questions:
- Is it a need?
- Is it right for you?
- Is this the right timing for me to have what I desire?
No matter if you answer yes or no to all three questions, God may be allowing you to go without help so you can continue to depend on him to lead the way. One way to look at it is, he is telling you that you need him more than the immediate desires.
Takeaway: Depend on him regardless of what you feel is right for you. What you want may not be what God is seeking from you. You will only know that if you continue to depend on him. What are your takeaways?
Prayer: Father, thank you for today. I pray for our needs and continue to follow you regardless of how we feel within ourselves. We should stay dependent on you so we can support you in the right way. Thank you for our fellowship. In Jesus’ name. Amen!
May 24, 2020
Word of the day: 8 and David inquired of the Lord, “Shall I pursue this raiding party? Will I overtake them?” “Pursue them,” he answered. “You will certainly overtake them and succeed in the rescue. 1 Samuel 30:8 NIV
Reflect: How many times you stumble on something you can’t answer? But you need God’s answer right away. How do you learn patience while waiting for his excellent timing?
Discussion Board: David asked God a question he couldn’t answer. God gave him the answer he needed. Its the timing we seem to forget. God is in spirit. It’s not a direct human to human question and answer segment you can get answers right away. But, it can be through human to human that God can speak through others. I always heard from a wise man, your situations and solutions can come in miles, not minutes, and vise versa, which is still good to stick by your friends that are always willing to be truthful. When deep thoughts and companions arise in relationships, always stay true to it. It marks true friendship. These friends can be your source for staying close to God.
Takeaway: We don’t always hear from God because it is not the right time to understand. We will hear from him when the time is right. When we don’t have the answers, God has friends that you can always stick to for answers. What are your takeaways?
Prayer: Father, thanks to our friends today. They dare to stay close to you when most people don’t want to because they are afraid of commitment. I pray that we can have the patience for you when answering our troubles. Thank you for our fellowship. In Jesus’ name. Amen!
May 23, 2020
Word of the day: 1 O God, do not remain silent; do not turn a deaf ear, do not stand aloof, O God. Psalm 83:1 NIV
Reflect: Take a moment and think about silence. Do you have time for being still and quiet? When someone is talking, are you silent as you listen, or are you interrupting when they are speaking?
Discussion Board: There is a time to be quiet and a time to talk. O God, do not remain silent; do not turn a deaf ear, not stand aloof (not friendly). What did you come up with on reflection time? When we ask God not to be silent or turn a deaf ear, there are times he doesn’t do that. If you aren’t hearing him, it’s a good chance you are not still and quiet when he is trying to speak. A lot of us may get upset with quiet time. I love quiet time. It allows me to think if I need to hear God. Being in a quiet place at your home on a timeframe that your household is quiet can benefit you. Your ears are open to God; your mind can hear God. In the book of Psalm, David cried out to God because he needed defense when people accused him of things David did not do. Our average response is to lash out and seek revenge. But when you have quiet time and let God hear you, he works at his timing and not ours. You will listen to him in return to handle situations you never thought you could handle on your own.
Takeaway: Remember, God is not turning the deaf ear. We may have times in our life where we are too busy to listen and accidentally set the deaf ear on him. It’s not our intention. Taking quiet time out of the day is how we can have open communication. What are your takeaways?
Prayer: Father, thank you for our fellowship. It is important to remember that our association is essential, no matter where we are in the world. We have friends to remind us of the gospel when we are lost. Thank you to all our friends spiritually connected to you. Thank you for your love. In Jesus’ name. Amen!
May 22, 2020
Word of the day: 2 “How long will you defend the unjust and show partiality to the wicked? 3 Defend the weak and the fatherless; uphold the cause of the poor and the oppressed. 4 Rescue the weak and the needy; deliver them from the hand of the wicked. Psalm 82:2-4 NIV
Reflect: Take a moment to remember times of corrupt leadership. At work, maybe at a school, your children go to, or government. What measures would you take if you believe a person didn’t commit corruption? What do you think the government and others can learn from bribery?
Discussion Board: There are a lot of questions as to why we see in our life why so many people get away with corruption. I am sure that it is almost a daily prayer for most people. Whoever does this type of behavior will pay for it one way or another, especially those accused of false bribery. Why do we vote? We vote to bring in an elected official to run the country. Do we look for just anybody to be leaders? I hope not. I am praying we look for inner qualities in good leaders. Moses, in the book of Deuteronomy, did this when appointing leaders. Wisdom, understanding, and respect. Any wicked leaders must be examined and held accountable if any corruption happens under leadership. God tells us to treat the poor with justice. We can’t isolate ourselves away from the poor. Some leaders do, and it’s not what God calls us to do. We should help others to meet their needs. God passed judgment on King Jehoiakim because he was unfaithful to his responsibility. Jehoiakim inherited his parents’ money, but not their faith. We can’t mock other relationships with God. We have to start and keep developing a relationship with God.
Takeaway: Corrupt leaders will face judgment from God. You can hide from others, but you can’t hide from God. We must be able to stay faithful to God and serve without corruption. What are your takeaways?
Prayer: Father, thank you for today. We ask a lot of why corrupt leaders get away with so much. We learned that they would not get away with it as they will get your wrath. I pray for your wisdom to continue to develop a better relationship with you as leaders. Thank you for our fellowship. In Jesus’ name. Amen!