Anxiety

TODAY’S VERSE
“Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.”
I Peter 5:7 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
So often you hear the admonitions, “Don’t fear.”, “Stop worrying.” or “Quit being afraid.” These are helpful and can often stop us from pursuing a downward spiral of despair. But Peter had a better way. Instead of clipping back the weeds of fear and worry, Peter is recommending that we pull fear out by the roots. He suggests that we pull all our anxiety out by the roots and bring them to Jesus. Not a few or some, all! And why can we do that? Because Jesus cares for us! And how He cares for you! It is like the old hymn says, “Is there a heart o’er bound by sorrow? Is there a life weighed down by care? Come to the cross each burden bearing. All our anxiety leave it there. All your anxiety, all your care, bring to the mercy seat leave it there; never a burden He cannot bear, never a friend like Jesus.” Today, turn to Jesus. Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, You know all about my worry and fear. I come to You now and cast all my anxiety at Your feet. Instead of taking it back, help me take Your love with me instead.
AMEN

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Chosen By God

TODAY’S VERSE
“And you also are among those who are called to belong to Jesus Christ.”
Romans 1:6 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
I never tire of hearing the word “called.” There are many things that I would choose in life. But how many choose me? What about you? How many times have you waited to see if your name was on a list? Have you ever had to wait to see if you would be picked to play a game in gym? There are many things you and I think we need to do in order to please God, but instead God beats us to it and accepts us first. God has called us to belong to Him. This is it. The big “it” that all of mankind is starving for. It is the essence of our purpose and being in this world. God loves us and is calling us to follow Him. Make no mistake; God has called your name. Today, follow Him.
 
TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, thank You for giving me life. Thank You for calling me to yourself. Thank You for giving me purpose and meaning. Help me live each day for You.
AMEN

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No Fear

TODAY’S VERSE
“Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.”
Psalms 23:4 (NIV)
 
TODAY’S THOUGHT
Fear can cripple us. It is an insidious cancer of the mind that eats away at our opportunities in life. Why is this? I am convinced that it is because we fear with our inner-child or some other traumatized part of ourself. We have unresolved memories that need to be dwelt with by Christ. Now it is true that we are to have “child-like” faith, but nowhere are we taught to have child-like fear. This is an immature state-of-mine. All we see is the terror and fear that we had when we were more defenseless. Instead, we are to face our situations as mature adults looking through the eyes of Jesus. As an adult in Christ we are not defenseless. We have all the power and love of Christ at our disposal. We can trust Him and step out in faith. Today, examine your own fears. Are they the result of some left over issue from the past? Ask Christ to come and comfort you like He did David. Ask Him to renew your mind and to heal that part of you that is in bondage. Remember, He is with you, He will comfort you.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, You know me. I come now and lay my fears at Your feet. Heal me, help me, I pray. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Patience

TODAY’S VERSE
“Being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience.”
Colossians 1:11 (NIV)

“But the fruit of the Spirit is – patience!”
Galatians 5:22 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Patience can be a very difficult to come by and yet what a powerful attribute to have. Think of all that could be done if we acted with patience instead of haste and pressure. Think of all the aggravation that could have been avoided had we waited just a little longer. Think of all the headache and tension that could have been obsolete had we just had patience. Patience is a sign of God’s presence in our life. It is the result of His Spirit living in us, strengthening us with His might! Today, when difficulties come, when plans get foiled or someone else’s urgency becomes our emergency, let us ask for patience. Let us cry out to God for strength and endurance and by His grace, patience will be a fruit of the Spirit that is alive in us. 

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, thank You for Your presence in my life. Thank You for the strength and endurance that You give me. I pray that it will produce the patience that I need  for today.
AMEN

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Thank God

TODAY’S VERSE
“Make thankfulness your sacrifice to God.”
Psalm 50:14 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Why do we make it so hard? What is it about God that we think we have to earn His love? It’s not that God wants us to. He doesn’t. The fact is we can’t! However, there is something deep inside of us that wants to feel we have worth, and the only way we know to do that is to “earn” our worth. But what if you could see it another way? What if you started to believe that you have intrinsic worth? That you were created by a God that saw you as something He wanted to create and that He took great pleasure in creating you? What if you started to believe that God loves you because you are you! If you could start to grasp that, then you would begin to understand today’s verse. God wants your worship of thanksgiving. He doesn’t want sacrifices to appease Him, or to bring you into a right relationship with Him. He wants you to realize that as a Christian you are already His child and that you have all the love and acceptance by Him that you would ever need. All He desires is “thanks”. A heartfelt thank you, this is the offering He desires. A deep sense of appreciation and gratitude, this is what God wants from you. Today, let the love of Christ fill your heart and bring a sacrifice of thankfulness to Him.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I come and bow before You. I am humbled by Your love for me. I could never earn it, but today I want to stop and say Thank-You, God, for Your love for me. Thank You for Your care and provision. Thank You, Heavenly Father, for all You are and do. I worship You in the matchless name of Jesus.
AMEN

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God’s Word

TODAY’S VERSE
“The commandments of the LORD are right, bringing joy to the heart.”
Psalms 19:8 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
The Bible is a precious gift from God. Divinely inspired, it was written in order that we might know how to live. The Bible inspires, convicts, guides, warns and teaches us. David wrote that believing what the Bible says is right and following its precepts brings joy to our heart.
He then goes on to share in a very poetic way, how valuable the word of God is. He writes, “The commands of the LORD are clear, giving insight for living. – The laws of the LORD are true; each one is fair. They are more desirable than gold, even the finest gold. They are sweeter than honey, even honey dripping from the comb. They are a warning to your servant, a great reward for those who obey them.” Today, spend time with God and His word and let it bring a deep joy into your heart.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, thank You for Your word. Speak to me, guide me, correct me, inspire me. Teach me how to live. Give me a deep and lasting joy deep down in my heart.
AMEN

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A Fruitful Life

TODAY’S VERSE
“I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”
John 10:10 (NIV)
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.”
Galatians 5:22-23 (NIV)

 TODAY’S THOUGHT
I live so much of life as if it all depended on me. I must achieve. I must make people happy. You know, “If it’s going to be, then it’s up to me!” mentality. Now this might be good filler for a PMA book (Positive Mental Attitude) but how realistic is it? More than that, how Biblical is it? Don’t get me wrong, I believe in personal accountability but we need to realize that we cannot live the kind of life Christ wants us to without Him. He is the one that came to give us a full life. It is “with” Him. We need to add faith to whatever we do. We need to bring God into the picture. We do this by changing “me” to a “we”. It is “Christ in us” that makes all the difference in the world. Jesus said that He came to give us a life that is to the full. He didn’t come to make us busy, or famous, or rich, or any other obsession that we may have. He came to give us the fruit of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. This is what He wants our life to be built on. This is the life He desires for us. Today, let’s quit striving and start living. Come to Jesus and let Him fill you with His Holy Spirit. Ask Him to produce the “fruit of the Spirit” in your life.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I ask that You would produce the fruit of the Holy Spirit in my life. Help me live for You in Your strength and Your power.
AMEN

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Worship God Alone

TODAY’S VERSE
“Gideon made a sacred ephod from the gold and put it in Ophrah, his hometown. But soon all the Israelites prostituted themselves by worshiping it, and it became a trap for Gideon and his family.”
Judges 8:27 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
What was a great political victory ended up being a Spiritual defeat. The Israelites had done evil in Gods sight so He allowed the Midianites to take over their land and persecute them. An angel of God came to Gideon and told him that he was chosen by God to lead his people to victory over the Midianites. However, Gideon doubted the Angel and three different times he asked God for a sign in order to know if what he heard was true. It was a sort of divination like the casting of lots. This kind of testing God comes close to superstition. Soon the objects become sacred like magical bones or cards that we see in so many mystical practices. God warns about such practices. He does not allow idolatry nor does He want us to put magical powers in objects of chance. But that is what Gideon did. Here God led Gideon into battle and against all odds Gideon and the chosen 300 soldiers defeated a vast army. And Gideon knew it was God. God talked directly to him, yet after such a victory he took gold and made an Ephod. It was a vest worn by someone who was going to “divine” God’s will by casting bones or looking for signs. And the result was, instead of God getting praise and worship, people worshiped the Ephod. They relegated God’s mighty love, grace and power to a magical vest! What do we worship? What superstitions do we allow to creep into our life? What “magical” behavior must we perform in order to receive God’s grace? Today, worship God alone. He alone is the giver of love, grace, forgiveness and mercy. He alone deserves our praise and adoration. Worship Him– we need nothing else. 

TODAY’S PRAYER
Lord, so often I am so desperate for a sign I take my eyes off of You. Forgive me. You alone are worthy of all my praise and worship. You alone are all power, love and forgiveness. I worship You.
AMEN

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Love

TODAY’S VERSE
“You must be compassionate, just as your Father is compassionate.”
Luke 6:36 (NLT)
“Three things will last forever—faith, hope, and love—and the greatest of these is love.”
I Corinthians 13:13 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Jesus was our example. For over two thousand years people have heard the story of His amazing Love. Jesus commanded that we needed to be loving, full of compassion, mercy and pity for a lost and broken world just like He and His heavenly Father were. Paul writes that we need to be imitators of Christ and His sacrificial love. Love is our calling. It is more than a duty it is the result of knowing Christ. It is the byproduct of being filled with the Holy Spirit. Paul defined this kind of love when he wrote, “Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.” Today, ask Christ to fill you with that kind of love and compassion. Ask the Holy Spirit to empower you to live a life of love.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I am helpless to live the life of love you have called me to without Your help. Fill me with Your Spirit. Convict me, forgive me, empower me to love the way You love.
AMEN

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Courage To Pray

TODAY’S VERSE
“So your servant has found courage to pray to you.”
1 Chronicles 17:25 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Why would someone need courage to pray? Have you? I have. Praying is all about courage. It is looking at your situation and saying, “I will exercise my faith and trust that God is all that He says He is and that He will answer my prayer.” Praying is courage because you are trusting God and giving up your right to try to do everything on your own. It is courage, because it would be easier to run and hide instead of facing your situation and trusting God. It is courage, because you are full of doubts about His love, your worthiness, His power, your faith. What if your trust God and nothing happens? What will others think? Who cares? The truth is that trusting God and praying is a risk worth taking. So today, when you are stuck, frustrated, afraid or confused, be like David and find the courage to pray.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I believe, help my unbelief! Give me hope and faith so when struggles come, I will stop and have the courage to pray to You.
AMEN

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