Maturity

TODAY’S VERSE
Brothers, I could not address you as spiritual but as worldly—mere infants in Christ. I gave you milk, not solid food, for you were not yet ready for it. Indeed, you are still not ready.
I Corinthians 3:1-2 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Paul was concerned about the maturity of the Corinth believers. Paul says that when we are new in Christ we should desire to be spiritually mature. After a while, we should be eating spiritual “solid” food not continuing to drink spiritual milk. A new believer needs to get grounded in faith learning the basic truths and practicing the basic spiritual disciplines. However, as time goes by like a newborn child grows and needs a more comprehensive meal, so Christians should desire a deeper walk with God. Paul observed that the Corinth church was immature in their Christian walk. Their spiritual growth was stunted. How about you? How is your spiritual maturity? Can you look over the last year and say, “I know I have grown in Christ this year?” Have you read the Bible, spent time in prayer, let God work with your personal habits? Has God made a difference in your emotional life? Do you see yourself more mature in your relationships? There is so much to know and so many areas in which to grow. Pray today that God will help you begin on a healthy spiritual diet so you will grow as a Christian.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I need to grow in You. Help my desire become a reality. Help me study Your word and talk to You in prayer. Help me be honest with You and then listen to what You say. I desire more of You and Your word. Feed me I pray. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Unconditional Love

TODAY’S VERSE
Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. — For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Romans 8:1, 38-39 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
It is so hard for me to accept the love that God has for me. I want to believe that He loves me with unconditional love and then I slip up. I fail to do something right, make a mistake, get someone mad at me and my life starts to unravel. The lies begin to fill my head and I find myself hopelessly lost in a system of “works” gone awry. A tyrannical voice banishes me to annihilation. After all, I have fallen from perfection. Does this sound extreme? For so many, it is not. We strive for perfection, saying God loves us but in reality, we do everything we can to make sure He will love us. We fear that He will reject us if we commit the “unforgivable sin”. The sad truth is, in our perfectionist mindset, every sin is unforgivable. We need to see this for what it is–a lie straight from the pit of Hell itself. The truth is, there is nothing we can do to have Jesus love us one ounce more. At the same time, there is nothing we can do to have Jesus love us one ounce less! Paul’s declaration cuts through our chains, “There is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus!” Let the truth of today’s passage set us free—nothing, not even our own mistakes, can separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Today, settle it once and for all. Accept the unconditional love that God has for you.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Thank You, dear Jesus, for Your death and resurrection. Thank You for becoming the sacrifice for my sin. Thank You for Your salvation and Your unconditional love for me.
AMEN

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Do You Love Him?

TODAY’S VERSE
I love you, LORD.
Psalm 18:1 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Has your faith in God developed to the point where it has gone past religion to a relationship? Has your belief gone past your head and entered your heart? Has your worship matured beyond the praise songs you sing to where you have told God what David did? The Lord rescued David from Saul and his enemies, so David sat down and sang a song to the Lord. The first words out of his mouth were, “I love you, Lord.” Have you ever told God that? “I love you, Lord.” It isn’t Christianity until you can tell Him. Ask Peter. Peter spent three years with Jesus. He knew Him. He served Him. He pledged his allegiance to Him. But he also denied Him. When Jesus rose again from the dead He only had one question for Peter. Three times He asked, “Do you love me?” When Peter answered Jesus for the third time there was something earnest in his voice. He was moved and said, “Lord, you know everything. You know that I love you.” Both David and Peter used the word “Lord” when addressing God and then they both used the word love. Why? Because He can’t be your Lord without your love. Today, hear Him ask, “Do you love me?” What is your answer?

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I come to You right now and tell You from the bottom of my heart, I love You. I commit my life to You. I truly do love You, Lord.
AMEN

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An Authentic Life

TODAY’S VERSE
You are a chosen people. You are royal priests, a holy nation, God’s very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God.
I Peter 2: 9 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
God cares about the way we live. Why? Because of the evidence that others see about God. Many people will never read the Bible but they will read our lives. They may not hear about the Gospel according to Matthew, Mark, Luke or John, but they will know the Gospel according to you! You see, Peter wrote that you are part of a chosen people. You are a Royal Priest of Almighty God. You are part of a Holy Nation. Because of this, you have the privilege and the responsibility, to represent your King. You are to show others the goodness of God by the way you live. It is your life that silences the skeptics that would bring dishonor to God. So, do you have to be perfect? If so, does this mean that you make a mask and fake your good behavior? No, people are not looking for pretense or phoniness. They want to see an honest, real and authentic life. A life where you admit when you are wrong. Where you fall, but get up and try again. Where your faith is weak but you surrender to the love of God anyways. God chose you. Now it is your turn. Choose to live for Him.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, thank You for choosing me. Thank You for making me a Royal Priest, a chosen person, part of a Holy nation. Help me to live accordingly. I cannot do it by myself. I need Your help, help me I pray. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Wisdom and Understanding

TODAY’S VERSE
For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you and asking God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all spiritual wisdom and understanding.
Colossians 1:9 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
What an exciting prospect. Paul was asking God to fill the Colossians with the “knowledge of His will”. But it wasn’t some instantaneous filling. It wasn’t an “insight” pulled out of thin air. Paul said that the knowledge of God’s will was the result of spiritual wisdom and understanding. What do you wonder about? What about your future has you stymied? What direction are you in need of? You could ask God to simply give you His will, but according to this passage you really need to ask God to impart to you spiritual wisdom and understanding. Why? Because God’s will is not that simple. Most times it is not a single answer that we need. Rather it is a series of answers. “Go this way” will not suffice. It is more like a long distant trip. You have to navigate across many highways making many decisions about direction along the way. God’s wisdom and understanding give us the ability to discern each step. Today ask God to fill you with the knowledge of His will by giving you all the spiritual wisdom and understanding you need. You can begin to pursue that wisdom and understanding through, prayer, meditation and studying the word of God.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father thank You that You can make Your will abundantly clear to me through spiritual wisdom and understanding. Help me today as I meditate, pray and read Your word to get all the wisdom and understanding that I need.
AMEN

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