Forgiveness

TODAY’S VERSE
For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his love for those who fear him; as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us. As a father has compassion on his children, so the LORD has compassion on those who fear him.
Psalms 103:11-13

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Guilt is an insidious emotion. The Psalmist knew this first hand. He wrote, “”I am dying from grief; my years are shortened by sadness. Sin has drained my strength; I am wasting away from within.” His sin had caused him much grief. It affected him emotionally and physically. Our misbehavior, our rebellion toward God, does the same to us today. Hundreds of studies have linked toxic emotions to physical disease. But it doesn’t have to be that way. God has provided a way for us to have freedom from guilt. It is through the forgiveness offered by the death of His son, our Lord Jesus Christ. The Apostle John wrote, “If anyone does sin, we have an advocate who pleads our case before the Father. He is Jesus Christ, the one who is truly righteous. He Himself is the sacrifice that atones for our sins-and not only our sins but the sins of all the world.” Do you know this same Jesus as your personal Savior? Have you accepted His death on the cross as the penalty for your misdeeds? If so, you can say with the Psalmist that as high as the heavens are above the earth so your personal history, with all its pain and regret, is removed from God’s sight. They are as far as the east is from the west.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, thank You for the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ for my sins. Thank You that when I confess and renounce any wrong doing, that You are swift to forgive and cleanse me. I thank You for Your unconditional love that takes all my guilt and casts it into the deep sea. I praise You for Your unbelievable grace You give to me. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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God’s Path

TODAY’S VERSE
“Show me the right path, O LORD; point out the road for me to follow. Lead me by your truth and teach me, for you are the God who saves me. All day long I put my hope in you. Remember, O LORD, your compassion and unfailing love.”
Psalms 25:4-6

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Life is a journey. We are not settlers in this world. We are called to go through life as an ambassador of heaven, a sojourner commanded to give away God’s peace and love. And the journey can get messy. That is why it is so important to learn to navigate, to solve problems and to discern what to do next. David is crying out that God would direct his path. He said, “Lead me by your truth and teach me.” This is important. So much of our hardships, misdirection and hurts in this life are due to deception and misinformation. We need to pray that God would show us the truth and teach us through each experience. This is how we derive our faith and hope in Him. We succeed and make progress by learning. David learned to put his hope in God and trusted that God’s compassion and love would not fail. God wants the same for you. Today, may God lead you and point out the road for you to follow. May you learn all about His compassion and unfailing love.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I need Your guidance today. Show me what road to follow. Guide me by Your truth and teach me to trust You. I put my hope in You and Your compassionate, unfailing love. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Wait

TODAY’S VERSE
“Wait patiently for the LORD. Be brave and courageous. Yes, wait patiently for the LORD.”
Psalms 27:14

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Is it no surprise that “wait” is only four letters. Doesn’t it often seem like a curse word? We would rather hear God say, “Yes, that is a great idea!” or “Certainly, anything else I can get you?” We want instant gratification. We want what we want often with little consideration for any other variables and become impatient if we do not get it. Or what about the times when we have waited and waited. We pray, seek God’s face and still there is no answer. The last thing we want to be told at a time like that is to “wait.” Yet, David insisted that part of our spiritual journey is learning to wait. David knew first hand how hard it was to wait on God. He was named King by God but had to run and sleep in caves, running from the armies of Saul. David was brave and courageous over and over again and waited on God to work things out. He encourages us to do the same. Life is often hard; we have struggles on all sides. It may seem like God doesn’t care, perhaps like He is not even there, but be encouraged today. You are not alone. God knows your situation. Pray, trust, hope and wait. Wait patiently for the Lord.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, waiting is so hard sometimes. I confess I get so impatient. Forgive me and help me to focus on Your love and to put my trust in You. Help me to wait patiently and not to worry. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Strong and Courageous

TODAY’S VERSE
So be strong and courageous, all you who put your hope in the LORD!
Psalms 31: 24 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
What you hope in can determine your attitude. It is easy to get discouraged when times are hard. It is easy to behave and feel like a person who doesn’t have hope at all. That is why David challenged us to be strong and courageous. This wasn’t some Pollyanna “things will work out” slogan but rather a call to action. An “all-out, put your hope in God and go for it” holy boldness. Oh that we would have the kind of faith that David had. Today, hope. Lift up your head, be strong, be courageous; you are hoping in the Almighty God.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear Father, I am hoping in You today. Help me to be strong and courageous in all I do. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Masterpiece

TODAY’S VERSE
“For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.”
Ephesians 2:10

TODAY’S THOUGHT
For every truth there is a lie waiting to deceive us. Why is it so much easier to believe a lie? Why can doubt have so much impact on belief? A million people can believe the truth and yet one dissenter will get the nation’s attention. It is that way in the spiritual realm. Paul writes that we are significant. Specifically, “we are God’s masterpiece created to do the good things he planned for us to do” and what do we believe? Be honest, don’t we often believe we are no good, inferior, damaged goods and even hopeless? Where did that come from? It didn’t come from God! If we want to change what we believe, we must renounce the lies. Do it today. Lift up your heart and say it out loud, “I renounce the lie that I am no good, inferior, damaged goods or hopeless.” My friend, it is time to believe the truth about yourself. You are significant. You are a masterpiece made by God Himself. He absolutely loves you and desires you to accept the love He has for you. Renounce the lies; today, choose to believe the truth.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear Father, my Father. I confess I have believed lies about myself. I renounce these negative thoughts and feelings and command their power over me to be broken in the precious name of Jesus Christ! I choose to accept the truth, that You personally created me as a masterpiece to do the good things You have sent me here for. Thank you, dear Father, for giving me significance. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Faith

TODAY’S VERSE
But Elijah said to her, “Don’t be afraid! Go ahead and do just what you’ve said, but make a little bread for me first. Then use what’s left to prepare a meal for yourself and your son. For this is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: There will always be flour and olive oil left in your containers until the time when the LORD sends rain and the crops grow again!”
I Kings 17:13-14 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
What do you do when your back is up against the wall? It is so easy to get trapped into a “scarcity” model of living. We are so afraid of running out, being alone and not having enough that we plan, connive, worry and protect ourself from any and all harm. On the surface this sounds suburban, smart, the right thing to do. However, if we really examine our behavior and attitudes, we will find out that we are full of worry. Worry is not faith. It is not believing that God really cares about our needs let alone do anything about it. The widow only had a handful of flour left and a little cooking oil when Elijah asked her to cook his meal first. But he asked with a promise. A promise of God that there will always be flour and olive oil left for her and her son. The Bible says she stepped out in faith and believed God. The question is, “Will you?” Today, trust God for all your needs.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear Father, it is so easy to worry about my needs. Thank You for Your promise to love me and take care of me. Help me to live a life of faith and trust in You today.
AMEN

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Cry Out To God

TODAY’S VERSE
“Listen to my prayer for mercy as I cry out to you for help, as I lift my hands toward your holy sanctuary.” – “Praise the LORD! For he has heard my cry for mercy. The LORD is my strength and shield. I trust him with all my heart. He helps me, and my heart is filled with joy. I burst out in songs of thanksgiving.”
Psalms 28:2, 7-8

TODAY’S THOUGHT
David knew what it was like to be tormented. He knew the pain that comes with great need. He experienced difficulties that had no escape, except by the mercy of an Almighty God. So David cried out to God for mercy and help. As David cried out to God, He became his strength and protection. David trusted God with all his heart and the result was a deep spiritual joy. You see, God did not take David out of his situation. David still faced his problems, but instead of facing his situation on his own, he turned to God for strength. God protected David like a shield. Do you have a story similar to David? Are there times when you need to cry out to God for His mercy? Rest assured He hears you. You, too, can end up praising God for He promises that He will be your strength. He will be your shield. You can trust Him with your situation. When you do, you will experience the deep joy that can only come from God.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I come to You today asking for Your mercy in my life. I thank You for hearing my cry and offering to be my strength and shield. I accept this promise and put all my trust in You. Thank You that I will not be disappointed. Fill my heart with a deep joy today so that I too will burst out with thanksgiving. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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The Gift

TODAY’S VERSE
“I will ask the Father, and he will give you another counselor, who will never leave you. He is the Holy Spirit, who leads into all truth.”
John 14:16

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Can you imagine someone knocking on your door and giving you a check for a hundred million dollars? Think of all you could do with that. How tragic would it be if you thanked the person, closed the door and put the check on your dresser top and never used it? Never helped anyone, never bettered your own situation. Instead, you live a meager existence, paycheck to paycheck, and die a pauper. We would shake our head and mutter, “What a shame to waste such a resource.” And yet, what must God the Father think of what we have done with the precious gift of His Holy Spirit? Jesus asked the Father to give us a counselor who will never leave us and lead us into all truth, and He has. You and I, when we became a child of God, received His Holy Spirit into our life and yet we barely know this third part of the Trinity. When have we ever asked the Holy Spirit to fill us, guide us or lead us into truth? We have been given spiritual gifts but do we know what they are or how they work? How much time have we spent contemplating how to cultivate the “fruit of the Spirit” in our life? God has indwelled us with the person of the Holy Spirit. Might we seek to understand more about this treasure that God has given us.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, thank you for the gift of the Holy Spirit. Forgive me for not knowing more about Him. Forgive me for not living in His power. Oh Holy Spirit, I ask that you would make me conscious of your presence in my life. Teach me, guide me, fill me and lead me into all truth. I give You control of my life and pray that You would produce Your fruit in my life and activate the spiritual gifts that You have given me. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Your Calling

TODAY’S VERSE
“With this in mind, we constantly pray for you, that our God may count you worthy of his calling, and that by his power he may fulfill every good purpose of yours and every act prompted by your faith. We pray this so that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.”
II Thessalonians 1:11-12

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Did anyone ever ask you, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” Or have you ever taken a test to help you determine your passions and purpose in life? You could spend your whole life trying to find your purpose, that perfect job or the fulfillment of your childhood dream and never come close to what Paul was praying for the Christians in Thessalonica. What a magnificent prayer. The good news is that you can pray the same thing for yourself. God has called you to serve Him and you can pray with Paul, “that by His power He may fulfill every good purpose of yours and every act prompted by your faith.” Can you imagine that? You see, this is God’s true desire for you, to use His power to help you fulfill every good purpose of yours. The result is that the name of our Lord Jesus will be glorified in your life! So, what good purpose do you have today? What act prompted by your faith will you engage in today? Might He empower you by His grace to do all that He has called you to this day, so that He Himself will be glorified.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I thank You that You can fulfill every good purpose of mine and every act prompted by my faith! What an exciting thought. Please help me understand what this really means in my life. Help me not to waste this precious life You have given me. Might I live it today for Your glory. In Jesus’name.
AMEN

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Stand Firm

TODAY’S VERSE
It is God who enables us, along with you, to stand firm for Christ.
II Corinthians 1:21 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Standing firm is a Biblical imperative. Paul tells us why in a letter he wrote to the Corinth Church. He writes, “Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil. For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.” The good news is that God enables us to stand firm and Paul tells us how. He continues, “Therefore, put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle you will still be standing firm.” Today, suit up and be strong in His mighty power!

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear Almighty God, help me to stand firm and be strong in You and Your mighty power. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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