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Monthly Archives: October 2012

  • Gift of Giving

    Posted on October 17, 2012 by Boyd Bailey

    “If it is to encourage, then give encouragement; if it is giving, then give generously; if it is to lead, do it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully.” Romans 12:8

     

    Those with the gift of giving find great joy in contributing to a compelling cause or investing in a called individual. They are on the look out for opportunities where the Lord is at work. Givers can’t wait to give. They may even feel guilty or a little anxious if they cannot connect with a Kingdom need with their time, talent or treasure. Those with the gift of giving believe since God has mightily blessed them, they have the privilege and responsibility to participate in generosity.

    You can be a gifted giver with a lot of money or with little financial resources. It is a heart liberal toward helping others that motivates your acts of giving. You are thrifty and love to save—not to spend on yourself—but to have additional surplus for lost souls and to feed and clothe the poor. You understand that the remedy for greed is generosity. The best medicine for selfishness is becoming big hearted toward other hurting hearts. Mostly, you give because God gives to you!

    “He [Cornelius] and all his family were devout and God-fearing; he gave generously to those in need and prayed to God regularly.” Acts 10:2 

    Your process for giving may be systematic or spontaneous—probably a combination of both. It is wise to invest regularly in your church. Give aggressively where the Word of God is accurately taught and applied. Where Christ is preeminent, the community is served and the world is reached with the gospel. Missionaries are a must for you, because your soul yearns for other souls to come to Christ. Furthermore, you look for family members and friends who need a little bit of financial margin to get them through a rough spot. Gifted givers discern needs.

    Perhaps a couple has not been able to connect because of their overwhelming work or home responsibilities. You may be their answer to prayer by paying for a baby sitter for two nights along with food and lodging for a long weekend get-away. Perhaps you enjoy giving gigantic gratuities to selfless servers of your meal. Moreover, you are free to give, because your Heavenly Father has freely given to you. God’s gift of grace keeps on giving. Indeed, Jesus’ poverty made you rich in what matters most.

    “For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich.” 2 Corinthians 8:9

    Prayer: Heavenly Father, thanks for giving liberally to me, so that I can give generously for You.

    Related Readings: Psalm 68:9; Luke 21:4; 2 Corinthians 8:12, 9:7; Philippians 2:6-8

    Post/Tweet: The remedy for greed is generosity. The best medicine for selfishness is becoming big hearted toward other hurting hearts. #give

    Know your gift? Get a free “Spiritual Gifts Assessment” http://bit.ly/P4FYlw


    This post was posted in Daily Devotion, Wisdom Hunters and was tagged with Acts, Romans, Giving

  • The Return of Audio Adrenaline

    Posted on October 17, 2012 by Family Christian

    Audio Adrenaline

    Amidst the speculation and rumors that have been circulating for weeks, Audio Adrenaline officially announce their return. With the same heart, passion and infectious musical prowess they developed as a band in the 1990’s, multi-GRAMMY® award-winning Audio Adrenaline is indeed back and putting together a new lineup of like-minded musicians with the same common goal; to be the voice for orphans in Haiti and around the world. The Know Hope Foundation, supporters of Audio Adrenaline and Hands & Feet Project, as well as record label Fair Trade Services, have joined them in this renewed mission to fund and market a new record from which net proceeds will go to Hands & Feet Project to continue growth and support of the nearly eight-year-old charity.

    Five years ago, the band gathered in Hawaii along with their biggest fans for what they thought was their last performance. Since that emotional finale concert, founding members Mark Stuart and Will McGinniss have tirelessly worked to raise awareness and support for the 100 orphans currently being cared for in Jacmel and Grand Goave, Haiti. Now, with additional new band members and a larger mission goal, there is no question the world is ready for the “new” Audio Adrenaline.

    Stuart and McGinniss are still very much a part of the re-formed band. McGinniss continues his role as the band’s bassist while Stuart, although stepping down as lead vocalist due to his spasmodic dysphonia, causing involuntary muscle spasms of the larynx, is very much a part of band decisions and writing on many of the songs for the new album. Taking over lead vocals is former dcTalk member and industry mainstay Kevin Max, while CCM vets Dave Ghazarian (Superchick) is on guitar, Jared Byers (Bleach) is the band’s drummer, and singer-songwriter Jason Walker plays keys.

    "I've never been more excited about an Audio A record,” shares Stuart. “We've collectively poured into each song for months, and I love every track. Being able to help write and direct the process of putting the band back together has been an absolute joy. I can't wait to see our fans sing along with Kevin on the AA classics and fall in love with the new songs."

    As just released in Billboard, the brand new album is slated to release March 2013. The first single, “Kings And Queens,” will hit Christian radio in November. "It's just an incredible song about this idea of when we love the least of these, God wraps these little orphans in his majesty and they can become kings and queens," Stuart says of the song. "It gives you that idea that these are God's favorites, these little kids that have been forgotten. There's going to be a special place in heaven one day because of what they've been through here. It's just a triumphant, majestic song that just connects so deeply with Hands & Feet and the message of Audio A right now."

    When the decision was made to re-launch the group, there was a lot of thought to who would be the right selection to carry on the mantle of lead vocalist for Audio Adrenaline. When conversations were had with the band’s new manager, Wes Campbell of First Company Management, the idea was raised to talk to Kevin Max, a long-time friend of the band. Most of all, Max understands the passion for orphan care and Hands & Feet because he, just like many of the children at Hands & Feet Project, had been orphaned as a small child.

    McGinniss shares, “We have joined together under the new banner of Audio Adrenaline, yet the common thread that brings all of us together is for a much greater reason. We are beyond excited to finally share why we are putting the band back together.”

    Fair Trade Services, the new label home for Audio Adrenaline, could not be more excited in their unique partnership with Know Hope Foundation and the Hands & Feet Project, and name the band as part of their stellar roster. Shares Jeff Moseley, Fair Trade Services President, “We would like to see the orphans in Haiti taken care of and given a chance to succeed in life. As believers and leaders, we must do good while we are doing well. This is our mandate as followers of Christ and this is our mandate as humans.”

     
    Prologue #1 - The Ballad of Mark Stuart


    This post was posted in Music and was tagged with Featured, Kevin Max, DC Talk, Audio Adrenaline, Bleach, Superchick, Orphans

  • Surviving Mommy Stress

    Posted on October 17, 2012 by Tracie Miles

    Tracie Miles

    "Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him." James 1:12 (NIV)

    Parenting and child-rearing are one of the top five stressors of the general population. I understand why.

    There are days when I feel like the stress of being a parent just might push me over the edge. Despite my unfailing love for my sweet children, sometimes the thought of a mini-vacation from parenting (if there were such a thing) sounds mighty enticing. Especially on the days when I am suffering from a severe case of mommy stress.

    When children are little, the demands they place on a parent are physically exhausting, to say the least. But as they grow into adolescents, the physical exhaustion is quickly replaced by emotional exhaustion.

    Instead of our bodies suffering through sleepless nights, lugging piles of laundry, and the constant smell of messy diapers, our hearts suffer with stressful worries. Worries like whether or not our children will make it home safely, if they're making the right friends, and if they are strong enough to stand up for what's right in the face of peer pressure.

    The journey of parenting children, from toddlers to teenagers, is a strenuous one. Each season presents it's own set of stressful challenges. We can easily pour ourselves out completely and end up feeling empty and discouraged. It's possible to even lose our desire to keep giving parenting our all.

    In today's key verse, James addresses the topic of persevering through all the many difficult trials in life - and at times, parenting can seem like a series of ongoing physical and emotional trials.

    "Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him." (James 1:12 NIV)

    I am encouraged by his reminder that even when situations are difficult, those who persevere will be rewarded - including parents who persevere through the hard years of child-rearing.

    I also find it interesting that prior to this verse, James tells us to keep a proper perspective on the situations which require perseverance. For example, James 1:2-5 confirms that everyone will face trials, and we must keep in mind that our perseverance will result in maturity and completion.

    He also says that if we lack wisdom, we should ask God who will generously provide the answers and help needed to get through our most difficult days. I don't know about you, but I need parenting wisdom and guidance on a minute-by-minute basis!

    As we persevere through the stress that comes with parenting, we can have hope knowing that God will provide us with strength and wisdom. He will be pleased that we didn't give up. That we kept seeking Him and trusting Him through each and every trial.

    Parenting is a high calling, and one that requires a lot of leaning on God, unwavering determination and unending perseverance. Don't give up!

    Dear Lord, I have been stressed and overwhelmed in my role as a mom, and often feel guilty about it. I'm physically and spiritually exhausted. Help me remember that these feelings are normal and that I need to depend on You for strength and wisdom. Give me the desire and ability to persevere and find joy in the adventure of motherhood. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

    Related Resources:

    Stressed-Less Living: Finding God's Peace In Your Chaotic World by Tracie Miles

    Reflect and Respond:
    Have you been feeling completely "poured out" in your parenting journey lately? Have you prayed for strength, wisdom, and joy in the midst of the stress?

    Ask God to give you a new perspective about parenting situations you're facing. Seek His insight into how He is building fruits in your children's hearts through your perseverance and commitment to Him.

    Power Verse:
    Hebrews 10:36, "You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised." (NIV)

    © 2012 by Tracie Miles. All rights reserved.

    Proverbs 31 Ministries
    616-G Matthews-Mint Hill Road
    Matthews, NC 28105
    www.Proverbs31.org


    This post was posted in Daily Devotion, Proverbs 31 and was tagged with James, Tracie Miles

  • Forget About It

    Posted on October 16, 2012 by Karen Ehman

    Karen Ehman

    "For I will be merciful toward their iniquities, and I will remember their sins no more." Hebrews 8:12 (ESV)

    In the midst of a heated conflict do you ever get historical?

    Not hysterical, as in acting totally out-of-control ... but historical. As in bringing up the past; reliving and rehashing former wrongdoings and offenses.

    "You'll never change!"
    "You're acting just like you did when ..."
    "There you go again. You always ..."

    I do this to others. But mostly I do this to myself.

    At times I have trouble remembering the name of the person I just met or where I put my cell phone. However, I'm keenly adept at remembering my sins from the past. Or the shame and guilt they carry with them as ammunition to target my heart and make me feel defeated. I can recount my sins as easily as I can say the alphabet.

    Oftentimes forgiving myself sometimes feels like it's impossible to do.

    When it comes to God however, we don't have to fear He will bring up our past sins and use them against us, throwing them in our face and refusing to forgive. In today's key verse, God says, "For I will be merciful toward their iniquities, and I will remember their sins no more." (Hebrews 8:12 ESV)

    This verse reminds me of a story of a man who claimed to have dreams where God regularly visited him and they talked together. He shared this with his pastor who doubted whether this was actually true. So the pastor issued a challenge to prove whether or not the man's claims were valid.

    "The next time God visits you," he instructed the man, "ask Him to tell you the worst sin I've ever committed." Since this pastor had a wild background he was certain there were a lot of sins lurking there from which God could choose.

    Later when the pastor saw the man again, he asked him, "Well, did God visit with you again?" The man replied, "Yes, He sure did."

    "Okay then, tell me, what did He say was the worst sin I ever committed?"

    The man responded, "I asked and God looked straight at me and simply stated, 'Hmmm ... I don't remember.'"

    In God's Word we are told, "He has removed our sins as far from us as the east is from the west." (Psalm 103:12 NLT) And, as today's verse says, He not only removes sins, He forgets them!

    His ability to forget is His way of giving us a new start. He hits the refresh button on our lives and enables us to start over, no mater what grievous wrongs we've committed. Or how often we've committed them.

    We must simply confess our sins to Him. He is faithful to forgive our wrongdoings and hit the restart button of our heart, giving us a fresh beginning.

    Perhaps it is time we "forget about it" - just like God does. If He chooses not to remember our sins, why do we keep shaming and blaming ourselves for them?

    Let's pray for the ability to forget and live like the holy and forgiven people God says we are when we bring our sins to Him. Instead of remembering our history, let's focus on the history of Jesus' death on the cross and His forgiveness and forgetfulness . . . of our sins.

    Dear Lord, help me grasp the truth that You do not remember my sins. Thank You for not only forgiving my sins, but for forgetting them as well. May I live as a new creation, holy and blameless as I seek to serve You. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

    Related Resources:
    If you liked this devotion, check out Karen's new book LET. IT. GO. How to Stop Running the Show & Start Walking in Faith. It will enable you to control what you should and trust God with what you can't.

    Confessions of an Adulterous Christian Woman by Lyndell Hetrick Holtz

    Reflect and Respond:
    What sins in your past or present do you tend to beat yourself up over? Make a list of them on a piece of paper.

    Now, read today's key verse again and then tear up the list and throw it in the trash. Promise yourself that, since God doesn't bring up the sins anymore, you won't either.

    Write out the verse to post in a prominent place for those times when you are tempted to shame yourself again. Memorize it if you must!

    Power Verses:
    Psalm 103:2-4, "My soul, praise the Lord, and do not forget all His benefits. He forgives all your sin; He heals all your diseases. He redeems your life from the Pit; He crowns you with faithful love and compassion." (HCSB)

    © 2012 by Karen Ehman. All rights reserved.

    Proverbs 31 Ministries
    616-G Matthews-Mint Hill Road
    Matthews, NC 28105
    www.Proverbs31.org


    This post was posted in Daily Devotion, Proverbs 31 and was tagged with Psalm, Hebrews, Karen Ehman

  • Gift of Exhortation

    Posted on October 16, 2012 by Boyd Bailey

    “Or he who exhorts, in his exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness.” Romans 12:8 NASB

     

    An exhorter encourages others in the ways of God. They have a genuine desire for their brothers and sisters in Christ to grow in Christ-likeness. Therefore, application of Biblical truth is the basis of their motivation toward maturity. For the exhorter, information without application leads to spiritual inoculation. Growing in grace is much more than hearing what’s required of a disciple; it’s doing the right things the right way. The exhortation gift provides a road map for righteous living. 

    Every follower of Jesus needs an exhorter for encouragement and accountability. We need to know that someone really knows and understands us. They know us so well; they can tell when we are not doing well. They ask us questions that are to the point, but delivered with patience. The gift of exhortation gives us courage to continue and warns us when to turn around. They praise our strengths and protect us from our weaknesses. We are wise to invite exhorters into our life.

    “For our exhortation does not come from error or impurity or by way of deceit; but just as we have been approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel, so we speak, not as pleasing men, but God who examines our hearts.” 1 Thessalonians 2:3-4, NASB

    Do you have the gift of exhortation? If so, make sure you are encouraged in the Lord and held accountable by His people. Prayerfully invite a select group of trusted saints to peer into your soul, warts and all. Like those you help—you need a spiritual examination. Just as you submit to a doctor for regular physical check ups, so your submission to trusted advisors for spiritual scrutiny helps preclude problems. Exhorters need exhortation to maintain a sustainable pace.

    Moreover, make sure to schedule for your sweet and supportive time with Jesus. He is your eternal exhorter of love, patience, trust, holiness and help. He gives your soul strength when you are weak. He gives your mind peace when you are worried. He gives your body rest when you are restless. He gives your emotions comfort when you are afraid. One simple, “I love you” from Jesus, lingers in your heart. Thus, be exhorted in the Lord and then exhort others in the Lord.

    “Finally then, brethren, we request and exhort you in the Lord Jesus, that as you received from us instruction as to how you ought to walk and please God (just as you actually do walk), that you excel still more.” 1 Thessalonians 4:1, NASB

    Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank you for exhorting me in Your ways, so that I can exhort others.

    Related Readings: Proverbs 1:8; Philippians 4:4; 1 Timothy 5:1; Hebrews 13:1, 22

    Post/Tweet: The gift of exhortation gives us courage to continue and warns when to turn around. #exhort

    Know your gift? Get a free “Spiritual Gifts Assessment” http://bit.ly/P4FYlw


    This post was posted in Daily Devotion, Wisdom Hunters and was tagged with Romans, 1 Thessalonians

  • Gift of Teaching

    Posted on October 15, 2012 by Boyd Bailey

    “If it is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach.” Romans 12:6

     

    Gifted teachers love examining, interpreting and explaining the Holy Scriptures. They can instruct in their area of expertise, but they especially enjoy bringing out the meaning of the Bible. Context is critical for teachers, because the integrity of rightly dividing the word of truth is fundamental. Teachers love to ask, what was the reader thinking and experiencing? Why did the Holy Spirit inspire the exact Hebrew or Greek word? Teachers thrive at knowing the “why” behind the word.

    If you are a Spirit-filled teacher you embrace the need for dependency on God in understanding His intended message. The same Holy Spirit that originally inspired the penning of the Bible’s profound writings is the same Holy Spirit that illuminates its meaning to modern day teachers. Your teaching gift positions you to perceive God’s heart through your humble heart. Beyond an academic exercise is a divine encounter. The best teachers are students of the Spirit’s teachings.

    “But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.” John 14:26

    Are you using your gift of teaching for God’s glory? Is it time for you to take a step of faith and teach for the first time or to step back into the role of teaching? Yes, teachers have a higher standard to live by because they know the truth and are accountable to apply the truth personally. The enemy will not sit still when you take a stand to affirm the claims of Christ. He will assault you with shame so you don’t feel worthy to teach the Word, but in Christ you are creditable.

    Moreover, your teaching gift is a gift for students hungry for Scripture. Like infants desire milk and adults enjoy meat, you are Christ’s chef to serve up a variety of menu items that educate in His principles for living. So, set your teaching table with a heart prepared in prayer and a mind equipped in study. Be concise, clear and compelling, and you will never lack an audience. Teach out of your weakness and whatever the Lord’s teaching you, and you will never need content. Be humble, be bold, be honest, admit mistakes and never stop learning. Teach, to make God smile. 

    “Not many of you should become teachers, my fellow believers, because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly.” James 3:1

    Prayer: Heavenly Father, teach me, so I can humbly teach Your children.

    Related Readings: Ephesians 4:11; Romans 2:21; 2 Timothy 4:3; Hebrews 5:12

    Post/Tweet: The best teachers of Scripture are students of the Spirit’s teachings. #teaching

    Know your gift? Get a free “Spiritual Gifts Assessment” http://bit.ly/P4FYlw


    This post was posted in Daily Devotion, Wisdom Hunters and was tagged with John, Romans, James, Teaching

  • Hide and Seek

    Posted on October 15, 2012 by Micca Campbell

    Micca Campbell

    "But if from there you seek the Lord your God, you will find him if you seek him with all your heart and with all your soul." Deuteronomy 4:29 (NIV)

    During my childhood, one of my most memorable times was during the long, hot days of summer. Each evening, the neighborhood kids and I went outside after dinner for one last game. At dusk, we would meet at the dead-end street to play "Hide and Seek."

    This was a very serious game. The goal was to hide from your seeker until it was safe to run for home base without being seen and tagged out. That is why we played under the cover of twilight. The darkness kept you concealed as you dashed from object to object until you finally made it to home base - unseen and untagged by the pursuer.

    I especially loved the memories of when I was young enough to still enjoy the game, but old enough to know how to keep from being found.

    It was my dad who first introduced me to Hide and Seek. Although, my father and I played the game with different rules.

    When Dad hid, he would leave clues on purpose so I could find him. Sometimes, I would spy his wiggling toes sticking out from under the living room curtains. Others times, I noticed a lampshade sitting atop a very large stand in the shape of his body. Or I'd hear noises coming from behind the couch.

    For my dad and me, the game was not about staying hidden. It was about developing our relationship.

    Our reunion brought joy and laughter. Mostly, it taught me that whenever I needed my dad, he could always be found.

    The same is true with our heavenly Father. He is not playing a game of chance - that we may or may not find Him. No. God wants to be found, and He leaves clues about His presence everywhere we look.

    Today's key verse assures us that we will find God if we seek Him with our heart and soul. "But if from there you seek the Lord your God, you will find him if you seek him with all your heart and with all your soul." (Deut. 4:29)

    When do we seek Him? God's Word tells us to seek Him while He can be found. We should seek God immediately.

    How do we seek Him? With diligence, through prayer, in His Word, and with our whole hearts.

    He will be found in the beauty of creation and within the pages of His Word. As we seek God, we will discover His will, His plans, and His blessings in new found strength as we face adversity, and in the comfort of His presence as we communicate with Him in prayer.

    God isn't playing Hide and Seek with us. He longs to be found by those who earnestly seek Him. The Lord is ready and waiting to reveal Himself to you in such wonderful ways that it will leave you longing for more. It's an adventure you don't want to miss. Ready, set, seek!

    Dear Lord, I long to see You in my daily life. Reveal Yourself to me as I seek in times of sorrow and in times of joy. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

    Related Resources:
    Discover a faith stronger than all your fears in Micca's book, An Untroubled Heart.

    Reflect and Respond:
    Have you lost sight of God?

    Seek Him today in His Word and through prayer. Look for Him all around you. Ask God to open your eyes and reveal Himself to you in a fresh and tender way.

    Power Verses:
    1 Chronicles 16:11, "Look to the LORD and his strength; seek his face always." (NIV)

    Psalms 9:10, "Those who know your name will trust in you, for you, LORD, have never forsaken those who seek you." (NIV)

    © 2012 by Micca Campbell. All rights reserved.

    Proverbs 31 Ministries
    616-G Matthews-Mint Hill Road
    Matthews, NC 28105
    www.Proverbs31.org


    This post was posted in Daily Devotion, Proverbs 31 and was tagged with Deuteronomy, Micca Campbell

  • Process Anger

    Posted on October 14, 2012 by Boyd Bailey

    “Saul tried to pin him to the wall with his spear, but David eluded him as Saul drove the spear into the wall. That night David made good his escape” 1 Samuel 19:10

     

    Process anger, or it will control your attitude and your actions. Anger is a self-fulfilling prophecy of destruction. It destroys peace and quiet and ravishes relationships. Anger is acidic, for it eats away at your credibility, your health, and eventually your ability to function successfully in life. Anger is an ugly emotion, as it easily embarrasses itself and humiliates others for sport. It has a way of expressing itself at the most inappropriate times. For example, one outburst of anger can turn a pleasant family drive to church into one full of fear and intimidation.

    Work environments build walls of distrust because of seething, unresolved anger. Relationships never get beyond the surface because of the fear of anger’s rejection. No one wants to be around an angry person. The Bible even says, “Anger is cruel and fury overwhelming, but who can stand before jealousy” (Proverbs 27:4). Where does anger come from? There are probably a variety of sources. One is the result of not being loved and/or not loving. When a heart is perpetually unloved, it has a void that is first influenced by, and then filled with anger. On the contrary, a heart full of love has no room for anger. Love melts anger the way the sun melts a milk chocolate bar at the beach. Cold anger is no match for the warm flames of love.

    Love responds with understanding, instead of seeking to argue or defend itself. Love learns to forgive instead of storing up resentment when you have been deeply disappointed. Love moves on instead of seething in the stew of what should have happened. Love matures over mistakes made, while anger whines in immaturity. Furthermore, anger incubates in a hurting heart. A heart raw with emotion is a candidate for anger. Suffering may be hurting your heart and you can’t take it anymore. Your heart is crushed and wrung out by pain. You are extremely vulnerable to the influence of anger, so let the compassion of Christ heal your heart. Invite the Lord to love  you, and process your pain in prayer. Listen intently to the Lord, for He really does care. He loves you right in the middle of your mess. Invite the love of Jesus to do surgery on your soul. After the Almighty has loved you, let others love you. Love is salve for your soul, as you need the love and prayers of people to help you process your anger.

    Moreover, you may be the brunt of another’s angry outbursts, but do not take their anger personally. See that person as Jesus does and extend forgiveness. Anger may be the defense mechanism another uses to keep you at bay. But kill him or her with kindness instead. Initiate forgiveness seven times seventy, and pray for this person to be loved by God and by you. Anger is an ugly mask, so unveil it with acceptance. Anger is your excuse to love and accept, not fight and flee.

    The Bible says, “A fool gives full vent to his anger, but a wise man keeps himself under control” (Proverbs 29:11). 

    Taken from October 10th reading in the 365-day devotional book, “Seeking Daily the Heart of God”… http://bit.ly/bQHNIE

    Post/Tweet: A heart full of love has no room for anger. Cold anger is no match for the warm flames of love. #anger #love

    Know your gift? Get a free “Spiritual Gifts Assessment” http://bit.ly/P4FYlw


    This post was posted in Daily Devotion, Wisdom Hunters and was tagged with Proverbs, 1 Samuel, Anger

  • Gift of Wisdom

    Posted on October 13, 2012 by Boyd Bailey

     

    Dear Fellow Wisdom Hunter,

    We are extremely grateful to God for your faithful readership of the daily devotional, your prayers, and your financial support. Wisdom Hunters is a non-profit, Christ-centered, 501c3 ministry, blessed with a prayerful Board of Directors, who steward well this—the Lord’s work. After much prayer and planning with our 19-member Advisory Board, we believe the Lord is leading us in the following ways in 2012 and beyond:

    Vision
    Connect people to Christ through God’s Word.

    Mission
    Applying unchanging truth to a changing world.

    Goal
    By the end of 2013 trusting God for 200,000 daily devotional readers (currently-91,291) globally and in the U.S.

    Testimony (click here for more: http://bit.ly/ggJzWk)
    Thank YOU for Your daily posts. Today was a post that especially ministered to me and my husband. It was actually quite prophetic in light of what we are experiencing right now in our lives. We have taken a giant step of faith and your posts encourage us to continually seek God in the process. Thanks again and Blessings to YOU!

    By God’s Grace Wisdom Hunters 2012-2013 Objectives
    • Increase countries that read the daily email devotional from 146 to 175
    • Continue to reduce costs per reader to just over $1.00 per reader.
    • Chinese and Spanish translations of the daily email devotional posted on web site
    • Write and publish eBooks Wisdom for Leaders, Wisdom for Work
    • Write and publish 90-day devotional book Seeking God in the Proverbs
    • Write and publish Seeking Daily the Heart of God, vol. 2: release November, 2012
    • Write and publish a Wisdom Bible
    • Update the Wisdom Hunters website to easily search by topics (back to 2003) and Scripture
    • Create and distribute Wisdom Hunters app for Android
    • Engage a national publisher to distribute: Wisdom for Life
    • Launch membership program: Wisdom Hunters Premium
    • Engage church partners to distribute by email Wisdom Hunters daily devotionals

    Total budget needs for balance of 2012- $75,000

    Prayer
    If you have been a regular reader for six months or longer, please prayerfully join us in how the Lord might lead you to participate financially. If you are being blessed by the daily writings and could help us reach others for Jesus Christ then you can give online by clicking http://bit.ly/fPxiWr or mail your check to:

    Wisdom Hunters
    PO Box 800062
    Roswell, GA 30075

    Thanks so much for your prayerful consideration.

    A servant for Jesus,

    Boyd Bailey
    President, Wisdom Hunters

    “I pray that your partnership with us in the faith may be effective in deepening your understanding of every good thing we share for the sake of Christ” (Philemon 1:6).

     


    This post was posted in Wisdom Hunters and was tagged with Philemon

  • Living in the Light

    Posted on October 12, 2012 by Donna Bostick

    Donna Bostick

    "But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God's special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light." 1 Peter 2:9 (NIV)

    Fearful. Betrayed. Abandoned. Unwanted. Unloved. Unworthy.

    Words that formed shadows from a past that would haunt me for years. A past that would hold me hostage and keep me from fully living in the light of God's love.

    Fearful as I watched a hot plate of spaghetti thrown across the kitchen. Fearful as I watched furniture crash against walls. Fearful when my dad fell to the ground a few feet from my mom after he'd swung at her and lost his balance.

    Betrayed after my intoxicated father sat me on the back of a horse without a saddle or reins to hold, and then swatted the horse, which sent it galloping. Betrayed as I heard him laugh with his friends as I sailed through the air and landed on a barbed wire fence.

    Abandoned and unwanted when my dad filed divorce papers and failed to even get my name and birthday correct on them. Abandoned each time my dad refused to pay child support. Unwanted as years went by without visits, phone calls, hugs, birthday gifts.

    Unloved and unworthy each time my dad broke his promise ... to visit, to call, to show up for my high school graduation, to pay for college.

    Fearful, betrayed, abandoned, unwanted, unloved and unworthy. Words and emotions that I let define me and cast shadows over me until last year.

    Through several of my pastor's sermons and after a friend's father passed away, I sensed God asking: How would you feel and what would you do if your dad were to die this very day?

    I had no answer. I didn't know or really even think I liked my dad, much less loved him. Fifteen years had gone by since I'd seen him.

    Around that same time, God challenged me with two words: choice and accept.

    I had a choice and I made it. Following God's nudging, on July 1, 2011, I went to see my father and accepted him for who he is.

    In doing so, for the first time ever, I was able to choose to accept my past. God showed me I could not change my dad or my past, but I could choose to walk out of the shadows of their marks on my life.

    One of my first steps, after acceptance, was praying for my dad. When I started praying for him and choosing to forgive him, the shadows of darkness - the shadows of my past - started to lift.

    God then showed me I had more choices to make: a choice to believe He is who He says He is. A choice to believe His promises; a choice to believe I was worth dying for. It was up to me to choose to be filled with His joy; to let Him be my Father; to live in the security of His unconditional love.

    I had to make the choice to walk out of the darkness of doubt and defeat, and live in the light of His truth.

    It's been over a year since I started making those choices. And I still have to make them 24/7. Not just on Sundays. Not just at 9 a.m. when my day starts. I have to choose constantly.

    So I get up every morning and choose to believe God is a Promise Keeper. I make the choice to believe He loves me like no other can or will, to pray for my dad, to let go of the anger.

    There are days, even minutes, we won't make the right choices. But when we do, we live as the chosen people we are. Children of God who have been called to declare the praises of Him who called us out of darkness into His wonderful light.

    Dear Lord, thank You for Your truth that sets me free. Thank You that You have called me out of the darkness and into Your light. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

    Related Resources:
    Although we can't go back and change circumstances or relationships that hurt us, we can process our pain with Jesus. In her book, A Confident Heart: How to Stop Doubting Yourself & Live in the Security of God's Promises, Renee Swope shows you how to find confident hope for your future despite the pain and disappointment of your past.

    Reflect and Respond:
    Are you tired of living in the shadows of your past?

    Make a list of the doubts that hold you in bondage to your past. Pray and ask God to reveal His promises to you and then help you replace those doubts with His promises.

    Power Verses:
    John 8:12b, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life." (NIV)

    Ephesians 5:8-9, "For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light (for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth)." (NIV)

    © 2012 by Donna Bostick. All rights reserved.

    Proverbs 31 Ministries
    616-G Matthews-Mint Hill Road
    Matthews, NC 28105
    www.Proverbs31.org


    This post was posted in Daily Devotion, Proverbs 31 and was tagged with 1 Peter, Donna Bostick

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