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Daily Devotion

  • Voice of God

    Posted on August 26, 2012 by Boyd Bailey

    The voice of the LORD is over the waters; the God of glory thunders, the LORD thunders over the mighty waters. Psalm 29:3

     

    God’s voice has not vanished. He has not lost His voice because of overuse. His vocal cords are not strained. God does not cough or become congested. His voice is strong and intelligible. His voice is all around us, for us to listen to and be in awe of. Thunder and lightning display their glory in the heavens, but they are commissioned by Christ. They are natural phenomena, but they originate from the Almighty. Thunder appears from the most high and is independent from man. It is a work of God. It is the voice of God poetically, figuratively, and instructively. His voice through nature invites our awe and our attention. We hear His thunder and gaze heavenward in both fear and amazement. His voice reminds us of His glory. It is the glory of God that thunders from heaven in the heavens.

    The glory of God governs the heavens. Electricity in itself is powerless. It is ignited by Almighty God. He is the source of light, heat, cold, and darkness. God is the creator and the sustainer of the earth. His creation continues because He continues to create. Just as human beings are an ongoing creation of the Lord, so the earth is the Lord’s ongoing creation. He resides in eternity but still engages with the earth. His glory has not been gutted by scientific explanations, only validated. We see God in the dark clouds and the upper water of rain, and we give Him credit for the lower water of the seas. Our Savior can be seen in the beauty of His creation. Christ can be seen in all corners of His creation. His voice is powerful and majestic. It cannot go unnoticed by any honest individual.

    The power of His voice is illustrated in nature and applied in our life. His voice can be stern in discipline or tender in grace. Wise are His children who respond to both. The powerful voice of Jesus called Lazarus back from the dead, and upon His earthly death, interceded to His heavenly Father for forgiveness on behalf of His enemies. We do well to imitate Christ’s voice of faith and compassion. Use your voice to pray for people who are dead in their sin and in need of a softened heart toward their Savior, Jesus. Lift up your voice on behalf of others who have offended you and your friends. God hears your voice. He honors the voice of those who vicariously cry out on behalf of unbelievers. It may seem like you are a lone voice for the Lord, but you are not. God has His people around you.

    God’s voice is majestic and regal. He is enthroned above all His creation. Jehovah Jesus is our King of Kings and Lord of Lords. When He speaks, we listen. His words matter most. The Holy Bible is the wisdom of His words in written form. His voice speaks through the pages of Scripture. So milk His meaning for you from His written word. Take what He tells you, and obediently apply it to your life; then tell others. Those of us who hear the voice of God cannot keep quiet. He speaks in the temple of His creation, and we speak in the temple of His worship, the church. The Body of Christ listens. We speak His name and He gives us strength. We speak His name and He gives us peace. Name the name of Christ for His glory and for your good. God desires to speak to us and through us. Therefore, be a clean instrument for His voice to be heard. 

    Taken from Reading #19 in the 90-day devotional book, “Seeking God in the Psalms”… http://bit.ly/bQHNIE

    Post/Tweet this today: The voice of God in Scripture helps us find our voice. #calling

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    This post was posted in Daily Devotion, Wisdom Hunters and was tagged with Psalm

  • Angry Obedience

    Posted on August 25, 2012 by Boyd Bailey

    “Moses said to them, “Listen you rebels, must we bring you water out of this rock?” Then Moses raised his arm and struck the rock twice with his staff. Water gushed out, and the community and their livestock drank. But the LORD said to Moses and Aaron,  “Because you did not trust in me enough to honor me as holy in the sight of the Israelite's, you will not bring this community into the land I give them.” Numbers 20:10b-12

     

    Angry obedience is better than no obedience, but it is not the best obedience. It has its positive results and it has its negative consequences. It does get results, but does so at the expense of dishonoring God and people. It’s like a frustrated husband who lashes out at his wife, yet says that he loves her because he provides her food, a home, a car, and clothes. The facts of his provision are true, but there is something ominous about the omission of love and respect in the tone of his defense. In this angry reaction, God is not glorified and self becomes the center of attention. Anger drives this type of response.

    It may be anger from the grumbling of ungrateful people; it may be anger at others whose capacity for work and activity does not meet your expectations; it may be anger for always having to be responsible for irresponsible people; it may be anger at oneself for not preparing others to do their own planning and implementation. Obeying God is more than going through the right motions. It is going through the right motions with an attitude that acknowledges Him as the source of provision and trust. Anger puts the self-control of the Holy Spirit into hibernation. We are tempted to get angry with others for their ingratitude, when our own lack of trust in God denies His grace. We get angry when we place too much on others and ourselves; anger limits us.

    However, appropriation of God’s grace infuses graciousness. His grace enables you to trust in the Almighty’s agenda. You can trust Him and rest in His provision, instead of rushing into angry reactions. You can get right results without being driven by anger. Ask God to replace your anger with His understanding. Submit to the control of the Holy Spirit. Your submission to your Savior positions you to walk in humility, not in pride. Those who do not live up to their expectations easily offend prideful people. Humble people, however, are patient and self-controlled. They are as concerned about the means as they are the ends. Unfortunately, at any given moment, anger can push humility out and replace it with pride. It is a Christ-less coup of the heart. You become too driven when you run over relationships. Praise God there is a remedy to anger-driven living.

    The remedy is living at a pace governed by grace. Living without margin pushes out grace and incubates anger. Therefore, create more time for people and prayer. Grace-filled living is more relational and less transactional. Relationally motivated people ask caring questions instead of engaging in angry accusations. Their obedience to God is motivated by their fear of God. This honors Him, which in turn extends love and respect to others. Once you leave your place of prayer, you are still to pray. You pray without ceasing and you ask the Holy Spirit to douse any flittering fires of anger that pride tries to ignite. Stop and discern the Spirit’s prompting to pause in prayer.

    Replace anger with peace and patience. The promised land of more opportunity awaits those whose complete trust in God is their motivation to obey Him. Pray as the Psalmist: “Give me understanding, and I will keep your law and obey it with all my heart” (Psalm 119:34).

    Taken from August 23th reading in the 365-day devotional book, “Seeking Daily the Heart of God”… http://bit.ly/bQHNIE

    Post/Tweet this today: Wisdom and patience lives at a pace governed by grace. #grace

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    This post was posted in Daily Devotion, Wisdom Hunters and was tagged with Psalm, Numbers

  • Fruit of Joy

    Posted on August 24, 2012 by Family Christian

    “But the fruit of the Spirit is joy…” Galatians 5:22a

     

    Joy is the juice that flows from the fruit of the Spirit. It is tasty, delightful and delicious. Joy from Jesus gives strength for the journey, endurance to obey and enjoyment to relationships.  It offers hope for the future, optimism in the present and it reflects on pleasant memories from the past. Spirit-filled joy is a faith-filled attitude that is contagious. It converts frowns to smiles, cranks to encouragers and inertia to energy.

    Joy gives fuel to our faith and it allows us to fuel the faith of others. It lights up a room with its genuine gladness and delights to hear another’s heart. Indeed, our countenance stays soft and kind when joy, like emotional lotion, has been applied to our face by the Spirit. Just as sunblock protects us from overexposure to harmful rays of light, so joy shields our soul from the lies of defeat and depression. Joy in Jesus generates gladness.

    “Worship the LORD with gladness; come before Him with joyful songs.” Psalm 100:2
     
    We worship the Lord with gladness when we reflect on the gift of His son Jesus. How can we not explode with joy when we celebrate our eternal salvation in Christ? Praise to God releases our soul to lift up and proclaim joyful songs to our Great Shepherd, our Great Savior and our Great Spirit—the Godhead, three in one. Gladness in God can’t help but give Him glory. We are recipients of blessings that transcend our temporary trials.

    Therefore, be a joy giver—not a joy killer. Joy givers smile—joy killers scowl. Joy givers build up—joy killers tear down. Joy givers laugh out loud—joy killers sneer inside. Joy givers see opportunities—joy killers see obstacles. Thus, be an agent of joy on behalf of Jesus. Perhaps you take yourself less seriously and the Lord more seriously. Laugh at yourself, sing in the Spirit and extend encouragement. A smiling soul molds the mouth.
     
    “Though you have not seen Him, you love Him; and even though you do not see Him now, you believe in Him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the end result of your faith, the salvation of your souls.” 1 Peter 1:8-9

    Prayer: Heavenly Father, may I be a conduit of Christ’s joy to those I encounter.
     
    Related Readings: Nehemiah 8:10; Psalm 19:8; 1 Thessalonians 1:6; 2:19; Philemon 1:7
     
    Post/Tweet this today:  Gladness in God can’t help but give Him glory. #gladness #God
     
    Get free eBook “Infusion” by inviting 5 friends to Wisdom Hunters http://bit.ly/PEbaBJ


    This post was posted in Daily Devotion

  • Fruit of Love

    Posted on August 23, 2012 by Boyd Bailey

    “But the fruit of the Spirit is love…” Galatians 5:22a

     

    Love leads the list of nine character traits that constitute the fruit of the Spirit. Love, the greatest commandment—is God’s gold medal for His children who run the race of faith. This authentic affection for the Lord and people sets the tone for the following eight character traits. Love is foundational, because it keeps motives pure and it builds trust that delivers truth. Like a loving mom, love looks for ways to give care and comfort.

    Love gets behind enemy lines with the determination of a Navy Seal. It is the tip of a sharp arrow that slices into the hardest of hearts. Delicious love is an appetizer and entrée we can offer to hungry souls. It is attractive to acquaintances and it retains friends. We love when we initiate interest, refrain from retaliation, give grace and take responsibility. Love listens, gives, helps, forgives, perseveres, serves and sacrifices. Love is a verb.

    “And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.” Colossians 3:14

    Your love ties together all other virtues with its eternal elasticity. It doesn’t divide, it unifies. It doesn’t take, it gives. It is not selfish, it is selfless. However, it is the Holy Spirit that dresses you each day in the garment of God’s love. You are not capable to love beyond human effort without strength from the Spirit. He is the source of your power to love like Christ: you love your enemies, embrace your critics and forgive all who hurt.

    How do you know if you are growing the fruit of love in your life? You begin to know and understand details important to your spouse, children and friends. Prayer needs, birthdays, anniversaries, interests, pain points and joy factors all arouse your memory when you are around those in your circle of influence. Your love may courageously ask for help on behalf of another who finds himself in a desperate situation. Love is action.

    Furthermore, undeserved love may be the highest level of love. You love an addict even though their capacity to love is numbed and they only have pain to give back. You love a proud person, so they see a model of humility that reminds them of Jesus. You love someone who does not love you, because your heavenly Father did this for you, before you fell in love with Jesus. Your Spirit filled fruit of love shares the gospel and your life.

    “Just as a nursing mother cares for her children, so we cared for you. Because we loved you so much, we were delighted to share with you not only the gospel of God but our lives as well.” 1 Thessalonians 2:7b-8

    Prayer: Heavenly Father, who needs my listening ear, my tender touch or my time and trust?

    Related Readings: Luke 6:31-34; 1 Corinthians 13:1-13; 2 Thessalonians 2:13; 1 John 4:19

    Post/Tweet this today:  Undeserved love may be the highest level of love. #love 

    Get free eBook “Infusion” by inviting 5 friends to Wisdom Hunters http://bit.ly/PEbaBJ


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

  • Spiritual Living

    Posted on August 22, 2012 by Boyd Bailey

    “Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.” Galatians 5:24-25

     

    The Holy Spirit fuels spiritual living. This is where freedom resides and where fruit bearing takes place. The flesh is pre-conversion to Christ living; it is reliance on self to secure security. The Spirit is post-conversion to Christ living; it is reliance on God to secure earthly and eternal security. The Spirit and the flesh conflict, but the flesh has been put to death by faith and the Spirit has come alive. Spiritual living submits to Christ.

    Spiritual living thrives as we daily surrender our soul to Jesus. The way we became a Christian—by grace through faith—is the same way we continue as a Christian. Yet, the flesh tries to flaunt its old habits as teasers for us to not trust God. But we know better—it’s better not to boast in the flesh, but to be humbled by the Spirit. When we walk in the Spirit we are empowered to bear the fruit of the Spirit. 

    “So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want.” Galatians 5:16-17

    The Spirit brings wisdom, when we consider ways that are unwise. The Spirit brings conviction, when we begin to drift from our convictions. The Spirit brings comfort, when we struggle with discomfort. The Spirit leads us into God’s will, when we are tempted to follow our own will. The Holy Spirit is heaven’s secret to spiritual living. When we walk by the Spirit we are everything, but if we ignore the Spirit we are nothing.

    Are you looking to love better, rejoice more and be at peace? If so, allow the Spirit to grow love, joy and peace in the soil of your soul. God is your Gardener, whose green thumb of grace always grows an abundance of fruit. Forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control are all seeded by the Holy Spirit to produce the Lord’s luscious fruit that remains. Fertilize with faith and then water with God’s Word.

    Invite the Holy Spirit to pull out any weeds of sin from your heart. And like a kudzu plant climbs, coils and covers in a hot and humid climate, the fruit of the Spirit covers your life in Christ-like character. Your part is faith and His part is fruit. Your part is surrender and His part is victory. Your part is prayer and His part is answers. Your part is humility and His part is a harvest of righteousness. Spiritual living lives by the Spirit’s power.

    “You, however, are not in the realm of the flesh but are in the realm of the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God lives in you. And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, they do not belong to Christ.” Romans 8:9

    Prayer: Heavenly Father, I surrender to Your Spirit’s empowering me to spiritual living.

    Related Readings: Romans 8:3-5, 14; 2 Corinthians 5:17; Colossians 2:11; 1 Peter 2:16

    Post/Tweet this today:  When we walk by the Spirit we are everything, if we ignore the Spirit we are nothing. #spiritual #living

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

  • Eclipsed by Glory

    Posted on August 21, 2012 by Boyd Bailey

    “Do not come any closer,” God said. “Take off your sandals, for the place where you are standing is holy ground.” Then He said, “I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob.” At this, Moses hid his face, because he was afraid to look at God.” Exodus 3:5-6

     

    There are seasons when a servant of the Lord Jesus will engage the glory of God in an intense fashion. Yes, His glory is all encompassing, all the time, but these less frequent, intimate encounters are especially revealing. God’s glory goes to places in the heart where humans fear to tread. Only by faith and brokenness can a Christian experience this deep commune with Christ in the middle of pain, uncertainty, prayer, worship and transition.

    Moses, in reverent awe, worshiped God in His glory during his burning bush experience. In humility he took off his shoes and bowed in submission to his King of Glory! In these very meaningful moments we listen for the voice of the Lord and we do exactly what He says. If He says go, we go. If He says stay, we stay. If He says wait, we wait. The voice of God does not stutter, nor should our faith. We obey, because His glory is our guarantor.

    “As for me, I will be vindicated and will see Your face; when I awake, I will be satisfied with seeing Your likeness.” Psalm 17:15
    Are you emboldened or intimidated by experiencing God in all His glory? When you feel overwhelmed by His majesty, be motivated to move forward by faith. Allow your fears to transform into trust based on the fear of the Lord. His glory will eclipse your afflictions and deepen your affections. It is not a path to prominence, but a call to servitude. Once the glory of God governs your heart, He takes you to places only His special friends go.

    Experiencing and embracing the glory of God is the passageway to friendship with Jesus. Lordship leads to laughter. Awe enables amusement. Fear facilitates freedom. Intimacy brings inspiration. Glory gives grace. You are a friend of God, because of the glory of God. Indeed, His glory eclipses your earthly challenges and invites you to be called friend. Wow, what a privilege to walk with Jesus and worship Jesus at the same time!

    “The LORD would speak to Moses face to face, as one speaks to a friend.” Exodus 33:11a

    Prayer: Heavenly Father, I want to see Your glory, so I can display Your glory in my life.

    Related Readings: Numbers 12:8; Matthew 5:8; John 15:13-15; 1 John 3:2

    Post/Tweet this today:  His glory eclipses our afflictions and deepens our affections. #glory #God

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    This post was posted in Daily Devotion, Wisdom Hunters and was tagged with Exodus

  • God's Glory Revealed

    Posted on August 20, 2012 by Boyd Bailey

    "So Moses thought, “I will go over and see this strange sight—why the bush does not burn up.” When the Lord saw that he had gone over to look, God called to him from within the bush, "Moses! Moses!” Exodus 3:3-4

     

    The glory of God is revealed through humility, not pride. He chose a humble thorn bush, not a proud oak tree. It's to the lowly lovers of the Lord that he shows Himself in His regal righteousness. Indeed, the fire of the Holy Spirit burns brightly in a life combustible for Christ. The fire of faith will not be extinguished in a humble heart that burns for God.

    As disciples of Jesus, we are called to be His humble servants. It is not the places of honor that we seek, but the place of dependency that we desire. The lower the status of self is relegated, the higher we look up to our Lord in reverence. Christ is within us for salvation and companionship, but He is above us for worship and praise. He is our confidant and our Lord—our Savior and our Master.  We are His friend and follower. 

    "Jesus replied, “If I glorify myself, my glory means nothing. My Father, whom you claim as your God, is the one who glorifies me." John 8:54

    When you confess Jesus as your Lord and Savior, you glorify your Father in heaven.  When your behavior follows the behavior of Christ you bring Him glory. God reveals His glory through your humble service in your home. Your gracious attitude at work is a commercial for the Lord's glory. His glory is revealed when you revel in His forgiveness toward you and are gracious to extend forgiveness toward others.

    You are the Lord's light that carries His glory. The enemy tries to extinguish your eternal illumination, but your integrity shines forth. He wants to hide your light under his bushel of disbelief, but you add fuel to the fire by quoting Christ's transforming truth to him. God's glory is your rear guard, your covering overhead, and your torch for Him to guide your next step. He reveals His glory in you and through you for His own glory!

    "For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ." 2 Corinthians 4:6

    Related Readings: Isaiah 6:8; Philippians 1:11; 1 Peter 1:7; 4:13

    Prayer: Heavenly Father, I pray I will be a pure and humble vessel that reveals the light of Your glory.

    Post/Tweet: The fire of faith will not be extinguished in a humble heart that burns for God. #faith #humility

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    This post was posted in Daily Devotion, Wisdom Hunters and was tagged with 2 Corinthians, John, Exodus

  • Confident in Crisis

    Posted on August 19, 2012 by Boyd Bailey

    Though an army besiege me, my heart will not fear; though war break out against me, even then will I be confident. Psalm 27:3

     

    A crisis is in the eye of the beholder. One man’s crisis is another man’s opportunity. In a crisis, faith either moves front and center or to the end of the line. During a moment of crisis our heart can feel overwhelmed by the perception of an encamped enemy. Fear creeps into our feelings and we begin to falter in our faith. An encamped enemy can instill as much dread as the actual battle. It is during these interim times that we sometimes fear the most. Crises, of course, come and go. A terminal patient does not linger forever. There is a beginning and an end. A financial shortfall may require layoffs and budget cuts, but at some point the hemorrhaging of cash stops. A marriage malfunction may blow up in divorce, or get better by dealing in the realities of communication, love, and unselfish service. Relationships develop or decay. It is in crisis mode that we can reject our instinct to panic and become desperate.

    Instead, faith trumps feelings. God has brought us safely thus far. He faithfully guides all who follow by faith. Fear erodes our confidence in Christ and replaces it with anger and defensiveness. We capitulate to our feeling that we have to be in control. We believe we have to take charge and corral the cause in our own strength and ingenuity. However, “If God be with us, who can be against us?” (Romans 8:31). He is our light and our salvation, whom shall we fear? The light of His love illuminates our uncertain path. We do not have to fall prey to the tactics of the dark side and thereby doubt Him. We can go forward by faith. There is one thing we need in the middle of a crisis. It is imperative that we dwell in the house of the Lord, that we seek Him in His temple. In the day of trouble He will keep us safe in His dwelling. He hides us in the shelter of His tabernacle and sets us high upon a rock (Psalm 27:4-5). In a crisis, we have joyful confidence in Christ.

    Confidence during a crisis means we are collaborative and not combative. Confidence takes the high road of respect. There is no need to blame others or beat them down with verbal attacks. Persuasive people are prone to pride. They are forceful with their feelings. However, people confident in Christ are collaborate. Collaboration seeks out the opinion of others. There is an invitation for intellectual engagement. There is an investment in blocks of time for deep dialogue and discussion. A crisis tries to cause shortcuts, but confident and collaborative teams take the time for convergence of the best thinking to take place. A crisis needs our pride in perception to respect another’s ideas. Our past experience may not be what’s best for the future direction of the enterprise. 

    It is a confident and courageous leader who can give up control, trusting the Lord and others with the process. Those who are collaborative for Christ are positioned to be more than conquerors through Christ. Where there is no confidence in Christ, there is no continuance with Christ. Overcome your fears by faith in Jesus. He is just what you need. Hold your family, job, and opinions with an open hand. Trust Him and others in the process of crisis management. In a crisis we can be confident in Christ. With faith in God you have no fear.

    Taken from Reading #18 in the 90-day devotional book, “Seeking God in the Psalms”… http://bit.ly/bQHNIE

    Post/Tweet this today: One person’s crisis is another person’s opportunity. #crisis #opportunity

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

  • Sin of Silence

    Posted on August 18, 2012 by Boyd Bailey

    “‘If a person sins because he does not speak up when he hears a public charge to testify regarding something he has seen or learned about, he will be held responsible.’”  Leviticus 5:1

     

    Responsible people speak up when necessary. Sometimes, it is easier to remain silent, but God has not called us to a path of least resistance. We can stay silent but eventually it will come out. It may come out in angry passive-aggressive reactions related to our uncommunicated observations or it may express itself in built-up resentment or bitterness that eats away at our good nature and steals our joy. Suffering in silence is not God’s design. He wants us to speak up under the influence of His Spirit. Even if the words are hard and direct, God’s Spirit can deliver them in a loving manner.

    When you speak up, it means you care. We love the person too much to allow them to hurt themselves and others with self-inflicted attitudes and inappropriate actions. This is especially hard for men. Pride and ego keep us from being vulnerable to rejection or relational controversy, but we owe it to God, to others, and ourselves to “speak the truth in love” (Ephesians 4:15). Love compels you to take a relational risk and say something. Be faithful to speak the words, and trust God with the results.

    Furthermore, make sure to speak up and defend those who are defenseless. Rise to the defense of widows, orphans, and the poor who are crushed under the weight of the world’s injustice. You may not have to look very far. There may be family members who need your attention. Second, third, and fourth chances are called for to model Christ’s attitude of acceptance. Your reputation may become soiled because you choose to speak up on behalf of a seedy soul, but trust God. We can relate best to sinners because we suffer from the same temptations and sorrows. Christians are sinners saved by the grace of God, no one is beyond God’s reach.

    Lastly, speak up for and serve the poor. The poor need a person they can trust. The poor need us to give them a voice against the greedy souls who seek to take advantage of them. They need financial training; they need medical supplies and education; they need nutrition; they need jobs; they need indoor plumbing; they need shoes on their feet and clothes on their backs. Mostly, they need a growing relationship with Jesus Christ. The poor are drawn to Jesus when they see God’s people stand up for them. They are attracted to those who care enough to sit in their homes and drink coffee, create jobs, and speak up on their behalf. It may be building Christian schools so that the poor can receive a quality education in a loving environment. It is time some of us break out of our bubble of affluence and expose ourselves to the sufferings of the poor

    You sin if you remain silent over those who are defenseless. The Bible says, “Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world” (James 1:27).

    Taken from August 19th reading in the 365-day devotional book, “Seeking Daily the Heart of God”… http://bit.ly/bQHNIE

    Post/Tweet this today: When we speak up in love, it means we care. #speak #love

    Click on the free download “How to Have a Quiet Time”… http://bit.ly/KWDrkJ

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    This post was posted in Daily Devotion, Wisdom Hunters and was tagged with Ephesians, James, Leviticus

  • God of Second Chances

    Posted on August 17, 2012 by Boyd Bailey

    “But the father said to his servants, ‘Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. Bring the fattened calf and kill it. Let’s have a feast and celebrate. For this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ So they began to celebrate.” Luke 15:22-24

     

    God does not hold grudges. He is quick to forgive and anticipates receiving His children back from the foreign land of foolish living. Regret and pain may haunt the human heart, but heaven loves to love someone who is tired of trying to live without the Lord. Misery is the object of pity, thus the compassion of Christ is pregnant with possibility to a contrite and repentant heart. Second chances await those who seek their heavenly Father.

    Once we tire of sin’s consequences there is a righteous reunion we can expect from our loving heavenly Father. He is not waiting with an “I told you so”, condescending attitude. Rather, God our Father can’t wait to wrap us in His arms, weep over our return and rejoice with a great celebration. He saves His best for when we are ready to rest in Him. Second chances are at the heart of mercy. Christ’s love removes our guilt by His grace. 

    “The angel said to those who were standing before him, “Take off his filthy clothes.” Then he said to Joshua, “See, I have taken away your sin, and I will put fine garments on you.” Zechariah 3:4

    Are you in need of a second chance? Or, do you need to give someone else a second chance? Second chances mirror mercy. Because God has given you a second chance, you can extend a second chance to those who hurt you. Grace and mercy are not about what you or someone else deserves; it is about what your heavenly Father has already done for you in Christ. You get over your guilt by going to God in heart-felt repentance. He forgives you.

    Since you serve a second chance God, who can you serve who has broken your trust? Jesus teaches you to extend forgiveness to others in the manner that He forgives you—ongoing and unconditionally. Perhaps your spouse, child or friend needs to know that your love for them is grace based and not conditional on their performance. Create an environment of acceptance at home and at work—then celebrate when loved ones return to righteous living. By faith risk being taken advantage of—offer a second chance. God has!

    “At that point Peter got up the nerve to ask, "Master, how many times do I forgive a brother or sister who hurts me? Seven?" Jesus replied, "Seven! Hardly. Try seventy times seven.” Matthew 18:21-22, The Message

    Prayer: Heavenly Father, thanks for giving me a second chance, and give me the grace to extend second chances to others.

    Related Readings: Malachi 3:17; Ephesians 2:1-9; 1 Timothy 5:6; 2 Timothy 4:11

    Post/Tweet this today:  Second chances mirror mercy. #mercy

    Click on the free download “How to Have a Quiet Time”… http://bit.ly/KWDrkJ


    This post was posted in Daily Devotion, Wisdom Hunters and was tagged with Luke, Matthew, Zechariah

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