Speak To Me Lord

TODAY’S VERSE
So Eli told Samuel, “Go and lie down, and if he calls you, say, ‘Speak, LORD, for your servant is listening.'” So Samuel went and lay down in his place.
I Samuel 3:9 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Have you ever put yourself in Samuel’s position? Have you been to a place where you desire to hear God’s word? God loves and wants to communicate with you. He speaks through His word, the Bible. He also speaks to your heart through the Holy Spirit. In his book Hearing God, Dallas Willard concludes, “Direction will always be made available to the mature disciple if without it serious harm would befall people concerned in the matter or the cause of Christ. If I am right, the obedient, listening heart, mature in the things of God, will in such a case find the voice plain and the message clear, as with the experiences of the friends of God recorded in the Bible. This is a claim that must be tested by experience, and anyone willing to meet the conditions and learn from failures as well as successes can put it to the test.” Today, open your heart to hearing from God. Commit yourself to spend time with God in Bible reading, meditation, and prayer. Build a deep and trusting relationship with Him and ask Him to share His heart with you. Say with Samuel, “Speak, Lord, for your servant is listening.” When you come to God in this way, you will hear from Him.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Lord, I give my heart to You and desire to know You better. I desire to hear from You. I long to discern Your direction in my life. I come and say with Samuel, “Speak Lord, for your servant is listening.” In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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That People Would Know Him

TODAY’S VERSE
O LORD, God of Abraham, Isaac and Israel, let it be known today that you are God in Israel and that I am your servant and have done all these things at your command. Answer me, O LORD, answer me, so these people will know that you, O LORD, are God, and that you are turning their hearts back again.
I Kings 18:36-37

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Elijah challenged 450 Baal worshippers to a contest. Elijah and the Priests of Baal would put up two altars complete with offerings, and whichever, Baal or Jehovah, would throw down fire from Heaven onto the sacrifice was the real God. Elijah was confident that it would be Jehovah because he was doing what he commanded. Today our faith in God is on trial more than ever before. God has given us commands too. Not a command to call fire down from Heaven but to live our Christian life out in front of the world. Why should we love others? Why should we care? Why should we live a life exhibiting the fruit of the Holy Spirit? Because, like Elijah, we are servants of the Most High, and we are to do what He has commanded us to. God’s great compassion is exhibited throughout our lives. As we love others, in the name of Christ, they see the love He has for them. How can we do anything else? We who were snatched from our sinfulness, brokenness, and alienation from God, how could we not love others and pray for them to know God the same way we do? Elijah cries out to God in a broken voice and says, “Answer me, O LORD, answer me, so these people will know that you, O LORD, are God and that you are turning their hearts back again.” Do our hearts weep over those that do not know Him? Do we live so that others would see our life and recognize the Savior’s influence? Oh, that God’s holy fire would fall from the sky today through our acts of love and kindness. Might He receive the Glory, and might people turn to Him.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, like Elijah, I come to the altar of sacrifice. Might You use me today to love, sacrifice, and care for those in need. Might others see my life today and come to know You, the true and living God. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Real Hope

TODAY’S VERSE
Do not be afraid, Daniel. Since the first day that you set your mind to gain understanding and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard, and I have come in response to them. But the prince of the Persian kingdom resisted me twenty-one days. Then Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, because I was detained there with the king of Persia.
Daniel 10: 12-13

TODAY’S THOUGHT
I love this passage because of the hope it gives. There are two great truths to learn from this passage. The first is that God hears the cry of our heart. The angel assures Daniel, “Do not be afraid, Daniel. Since the first day that you set your mind to gain understanding and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard, and I have come in response to them.” What a precious reality is painted by the angel. Since the very first time Daniel set his mind in the direction of God, the Lord was aware and heard his prayers. He does the same with us. The second truth is that God works on our behalf even if we don’t understand His timing. The angel saw it as a delay. He was detained for twenty-one days by other duties. Daniel was fasting and praying that God would rescue him quickly. He no doubt was wondering what God was doing. However, from God’s perspective the angel arrived right in time. God was in control and all worked for good. Perhaps my brother Rodney Ovitt says it best in his commentary on this passage. He writes, “To me, this doesn’t diminish my faith or cause me to doubt God’s power and might. It just broadens the mystery! There is so much that we don’t understand and so much going on in the cosmos that we must simply trust God and know that He will see us through to the end.” God will see you through to the end. Do not grow weary, do not give up. Hope yet in God; He is aware of your prayers.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, it is so hard to wait. I cry out to You and it seems that there is no answer. My heart despairs and is tempted to grow bitter. Forgive me, Lord. Help me to understand what You showed Daniel. You are conscious of my situation and Your solutions are always on time. Thank You, Father, that You do hear my prayers and that I can trust You with the timing of Your answer. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Why Should I Fear?

TODAY’S VERSE
The LORD is my light and my salvation—so why should I be afraid?
The LORD is my fortress, protecting me from danger, so why should I tremble?
Psalm 27:1

TODAY’S THOUGHT
David is asking a rhetorical question, at least for him. David is pointing out that God is our light and salvation, our fortress, protecting us from danger. Therefore it begs the question, “Why should I be afraid?” However, many of us do not know God in that way. We’ve never read the end of the chapter. David ends the Psalm by writing, “Wait patiently for the Lord. Be brave and courageous. Yes, wait patiently for the Lord.” It is in the waiting that our strength is renewed. It is in the waiting that things become clearer. In the waiting, we learn more about God and His love for us. He is the answer. He is the light. He is the fortress. David knew this because He had waited many times on God. In fact, David was called “a man after God’s own heart.” That is where the light is. That is where the fortress is. Today, wait and get to know God’s heart.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Lord, I often seek answers when I should be seeking You. Help me wait on You and know You as my light and salvation, refuge and strength.
AMEN

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Give What You Have

TODAY’S VERSE
Peter said, ‘I don’t have any silver or gold for you. But I’ll give you what I have. In the name of Jesus Christ the Nazarene, get up and walk!'” Acts 3:6 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
A man was crippled sitting by the Temple Gate and was asking for money. When the Apostles Peter and John came by, the man asked them for money. Instead of giving the man money, Peter was moved by God to pronounce healing for the man. He said, “I don’t have any silver or gold for you. But I’ll give you what I have. In the name of Jesus Christ the Nazarene, get up and walk!” I believe that God has called you and me to respond to those in need similarly. We are to give to those in need what we have. What was it that Peter had? First, we see that Peter had obedience to the prompting of the Holy Spirit. It was God that orchestrated the healing. He nudged Peter to do this act of kindness, and Peter obeyed. Second, we see that Peter had faith. Pronouncing the command of “get up and walk” was an act of faith. Peter trusted God to do what He had told him to do. Third, we see that Peter had authority. Peter commanded the man to be healed because Christ gave him the authority to act on His behalf. Today, you may be challenged to help others. If you are like Peter and your pockets are empty, do not despair. Give them what you do have. Give them love, hope, kindness, mercy, grace, and life. Command a blessing upon them in the name of Jesus. You are an ambassador of Christ; go forward in obedience, faith, and authority.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I want to be used by You to help others. Please guide me by Your Holy Spirit. Show me what You want me to do and then help me be obedient and have the faith to act in authority. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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God’s Glorious Grace

TODAY’S VERSE
So God can point to us in all future ages as examples of the incredible wealth of his grace and kindness toward us, as shown in all he has done for us who are united with Christ Jesus. God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God.
Ephesians 2:7.8

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Have you awoken to the fact yet that you are special to God? Has your soul been stirred by the realization that God has decided to love you no matter what you have done? Does it matter to you that God has chosen you to be His child? If not, perhaps you do not really understand the concept of “grace.” Grace is the word that Paul chose to elevate to a whole new meaning. We find it throughout his writings. In today’s passage, Paul says that God has lavished an incredible wealth of grace and kindness on you. The word “grace” Paul refers to means “unmerited divine favor, approval, mercy, pardon, and forgiveness.” The grace you receive from God is unmerited because nothing you have done, or ever could do, would merit the kind of love and forgiveness God has for you. This grace is also divine. It is divine because it is from God Himself. He has chosen to extend His mercy, forgiveness, pardon, and approval to you. Finally, God’s grace to you is a gift. There is nothing you could ever do that would allow you to take credit for the incredible love and forgiveness God has for you. It is a gift from God Himself. Have you ever accepted His gift of grace? If not, you can receive His gift of forgiveness and eternal life today. Confess your need to God and then thank Him for His death on the cross for the payment of your sins. Thank Him for the amazing love He has for you. Thank Him for your total forgiveness and the promise of an eternal home with Him forever. Thank Him for His amazing grace.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I thank you for the grace you have extended to me. I accept the mercy, forgiveness, and love Your grace has provided for me today.
I praise You with all my heart. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Who Influences You?

TODAY’S VERSE
When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realized that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus.
Acts 4:13 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Have you ever noticed how deeply influenced we can be by those we spend time with? Reading books by the same author will profoundly influence you to their way of thinking. People who have been married for a long time become more and more alike. A student becomes much like their favorite teacher and a martial arts disciple, much like their sensei. Today’s passage tells us that those arresting Peter and John were astonished at how much influence Jesus had on these men. How about you? Can your family tell who you have been spending time with? Who do those at your work believe you are inspired by? Today, spend time with Jesus and let Him influence your mind and behavior. Let Christ teach you, guide you, and direct your path. When you do, others will be astonished and be able to tell you have been with Jesus.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Lord, I want to spend time with You. I want my life to be permeated with You so that others may recognize it and desire the same thing for their life. Teach me, guide me, mold me; I pray in Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Thinking Of Me

TODAY’S VERSE
How precious are your thoughts about me, O God. They cannot be numbered! I can’t even count them; they outnumber the grains of sand! And when I wake up, you are still with me!
Psalms 139:17-18

TODAY’S THOUGHT
What did you start your morning thinking about? Do you know what God thought about? He thought about you! How great is that? The God of all the universes is thinking about you. Not only thinking but constantly conscious of you. David is saying that God’s thoughts toward him are precious, and there are so many that he cannot even count them. What implications should this have on your day? What difference should knowing that God is very conscious of you and that He dearly loves you make? Should it change the way you think? How about the way you feel? Should it affect the plans that you have? We are not talking about some religion. We are talking about a God who wants a relationship with you, a vital, living, breathing, has-to-make-a-huge-difference-in-your-life relationship. He is thinking about you. Now, why don’t you do the same? Spend some time today and the next few days thinking about Him. Read His word, meditate in His presence, and talk to Him. When you do, it will only reinforce how precious His thoughts are about you.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I thank You that You are always thinking about me. Thank You for loving me. I confess that I don’t spend enough time thinking about You. I want to change that. Help me carve out the time I need to spend with You. Guide me in my meditation and prayers. Please help me know You better. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Why Do We Fear?

Why Do We Fear?

TODAY’S VERSE
The LORD is my light and my salvation—so why should I be afraid? The LORD is my fortress, protecting me from danger, so why should I tremble?
Psalm 27:1-2

TODAY’S THOUGHT
The Psalmist asks a legitimate question. Why should we fear? Why should we fear if God is our light and salvation, our fortress and protector? Perhaps it is a rhetorical question pointing to an Almighty God who loves us and holds our soul in His hand. He intimates that with God in control, we shouldn’t fear. This understanding results in him writing, “I am confident I will see the Lord’s goodness while I am here in the land of the living.” It is a matter of faith and trust in the realization that God is the ruler of both worlds, and we can have peace in this world knowing that His love will carry us to the next. Perhaps a better question might be, why do we fear? We fear because our finiteness can only understand so much. Situations become overbearing, and we cry out to God and don’t seem to get an answer. Our faith wavers, and we give up all hope. Like Peter on the water, we take our eyes off Jesus. Perhaps that is why the Psalm ends with, “Wait patiently for the Lord. Be brave and courageous. Yes, wait patiently for the Lord.” Faith takes courage. It sometimes takes waiting. Most of all, it takes trusting in His love. We may not always see His power in the way we think we should, but we can count on His love. His love will prevail.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Lord, You know my situation. You know that I cry out to You. Give me a strong sense of Your love for me so I can have courage and wait patiently on You.
AMEN

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Quench Your Thirst

TODAY’S VERSE
Is anyone thirsty? Come and drink— even if you have no money! Come, take your choice of wine or milk— it’s all free! Why spend your money on food that does not give you strength? Why pay for food that does you no good? Listen to me, and you will eat what is good. You will enjoy the finest food. Come to me with your ears wide open. Listen, and you will find life. I will make an everlasting covenant with you. I will give you all the unfailing love I promised to David.
Isaiah 55:1-3

TODAY’S THOUGHT
There is a thirst deep down inside each of us. Each of us has had droughts in our life that have left our souls parched and wanting. Our defects, upbringings, and life situations have failed to satisfy our dehydrated souls. So we look for an oasis. We search for streams in the desert. We look but fail to find what we thirst for. Why? Because we go everywhere to quench our thirst instead of to the One who can satisfy. The prophet cried out to Israel, “Is anyone thirsty? Come and drink— even if you have no money! Come, take your choice of wine or milk— it’s all free!” But they refused to come to God. God offered them unfailing love, but they rejected Him. Jesus, hundreds of years later, spoke to a woman at a well about living water. She came looking to fill her bucket, but He offered to fill her soul. Jesus said, “If you knew the generosity of God and who I am, you would be asking me for a drink, and I would give you fresh, living water.” That day she opened her heart and accepted God’s living water. At that moment her soul was rejuvenated, and she told her whole town about the transforming power of Christ. The town came and drank for themselves, going back home reborn. What about you? Is your soul thirsty? Have you been drinking from other sources only to be left wanting? Come today to Christ. Come to Him and share your needs. Talk to Him, pour out your heart, bare your soul to Him, and He will quench your deepest thirst. He is the living water and desires to give you life. Hear God call out today, “Come and drink, I will give you fresh living water.”

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I thirst. My soul is parched. I need Your living water. I come now, mouth wide open ready to drink. Please refresh my soul with Your word. Quench my thirst with Your Holy Spirit. Give me Your living water, and I will be satisfied. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Scriptural Inspiration For Your Daily Journey