Heavenly Shepherd

TODAY’S VERSE
The LORD is my shepherd; I have all that I need.
Psalms 23:1 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
David wrote this famous Psalm about God being our Heavenly Shepherd from experience. As a young man, he spent his time shepherding a flock of sheep for his father. He knew the value of a shepherd to the flock. He also knew the importance of knowing God. David knew that the shepherd provides all that the sheep need. He even knew that God, like a shepherd, lets us rest in green meadows, leads us beside peaceful streams, renews our strength, and guides us along the right path. Even in the darkest times, God is right there close by our side, comforting us. With God as our shepherd, David concludes that goodness and unfailing love will pursue us as long as we shall live. I love the concept of the shepherd; it is being a sheep that I struggle with. I struggle to surrender my will to God. But as my shepherd, God’s love cuts through my pride. His love compels me to live for Him. My Heavenly Shepherd’s love wins and woos my heart, helping me to surrender myself to His control. I can trust Him. I can lean on Him. I can be my needy self and know that God will care for me. Today, let God shepherd you. Commit yourself to Him and His loving care.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, thank You for all Your care. Thank You for all You provide and do for me. You are my Heavenly Shepherd and I will gladly live for You.
AMEN

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Show Me Your Glory

TODAY’S VERSE
The LORD replied, “My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.” Then Moses said to him, “If your Presence does not go with us, do not send us up from here.” – Then Moses said, “Now show me your glory.”
Exodus 33:14-15, 18 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
The people of God had sinned. While Moses was on the mountain top receiving the ten commandments from God, the people were rebelling by creating an idol and worshipping it. God was angry and was going to destroy the people. However, Moses pleaded with God to spare the people. Finally, God told Moses to take the people away without Him lest His fierce anger comes against them. Moses knew better than to lead these people without God’s guidance so he asked to reconsider and lead the people with His own presence. Even more, Moses asked God to show him His glory. Oh, that we would seek out and depend upon the presence of God the same way Moses did! What a difference it would make in our life. In his book “Experiencing Healing Prayer”, Rick Richardson writes, “Do you long to be filled at the core of your being with more strength, more substance, more hope? You may feel an urgent need for immediate help and practical steps. But I implore you to realize that knowing God, practicing God’s presence, and seeking God’s life is more important to your healing than anything else in all the world.” C.S Lewis, in his book “Miracles”, writes, “The presence of God is the most real thing we ever encounter.” Today, decide like Moses not to go any further, not to consider any new direction, without being conscious of the presence of God. Might we pray, “Lord, show me Your glory.”

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I know so little about Your presence. All I know is I don’t want to take another step without really knowing You. Lord, help me become aware of Your Glory. Reveal Yourself to me. I pray in Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Sit Before The Lord

TODAY’S VERSE
Then went King David in, and sat before the LORD.
II Samuel 7:18 (KJV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
I love this verse. The Bible makes it clear that King David was a “man after God’s own heart.” David knew the heart of God and wrote many of the beautiful Psalms that we have come to love. In today’s passage, we see David was moved deeply by God and had to talk to Him. What I love is that David went into the Tabernacle and sat before the Lord. This is the same Tabernacle where the sons of Aaron died because they did not follow protocol. The Priests could only come into the presence of the Lord, stand, and perform the ceremonies as were set down in the law. No more, no less. And here was David, like a child before his Father, sitting, no doubt in deep reverence but also in love. Love for His heavenly Father. And because of Jesus and His sacrifice for us, we too have become children of God. We get to sit in His presence any time we desire. The Lord bids us come to Him, worship Him, share with Him, pray to Him. Today, sit before Him, enjoy His presence. Share with Him your burdens, your concerns. Express to Him your joy and your love. What a glorious privilege is yours to sit before God Almighty.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear Heavenly Father, I sit before You in deep wonder and worship. Who am I that You would allow me to know You and yet You do. Your love for me is immeasurable. I sit in worship and adoration. I sit in humility and praise Your Holy name. You are my God, and I sit humbly before You.
AMEN

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I Want To See

TODAY’S VERSE
“What do you want me to do for you?” Jesus asked. “My rabbi,” the blind man said, “I want to see!”
Mark 10:51 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
“I want to see.” That may be an obvious answer for a blind person who is asked by Jesus, “What do you want me to do for you?” Sight is a precious gift that we quickly take for granted. But as I read this, I thought, I too need to ask for sight. Not physical but spiritual. I am so blind to the things of God. The cry of my heart is, “I want to see.” I want to see, like the servant of Elisha, who was afraid of the enemy armies until Elisha prayed, “O LORD, open his eyes and let him see!” The Bible says, “The LORD opened the young man’s eyes, and when he looked up, he saw that the hillside around Elisha was filled with horses and chariots of fire.” He saw reality with spiritual eyes. I also want to see the way Paul prayed we should see. He wrote, “I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and his incomparably great power for us who believe.” Today when God asks you, “What do you want me to do for you,” answer, “Help me to see.”

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, help me with my spiritual blindness. Open my eyes Lord, that I may see what you want me to see.
AMEN

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Ambassador For Christ

TODAY’S VERSE
So we are Christ’s ambassadors; God is making his appeal through us. We speak for Christ when we plead, “Come back to God!”
II Corinthians 5:20 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
What a privilege. We become many things in our lifetime. Child, spouse, parent, student, employee are among our many roles. We grow up, get a job, establish a career, and if it works out, enjoy a vocation. But nothing in life is nobler than being called to be an ambassador for Christ. It is a calling because Christ purposely chose you and me to serve Him. It is through us that Christ cries to the world, “Come back to God!” And how is all this possible? Paul answers that by stating that we have become “a new person.” He writes, “The old life is gone; a new life has begun!” This is a gift from God, who helped us come back to himself through Christ. And then God gave us the task of doing the same for other people. So today, consider your life. See it the way God does. He sees you as His beloved Child and His ambassador. Go then and compel others to “come back to God!”

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, thank You for saving me. Thank You for making me Your child and giving me the privilege of being Your ambassador in this world. Help me fulfill this calling through the power of Your Holy Spirit.
AMEN

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Word And Power

TODAY’S VERSE
Jesus replied, “Your mistake is that you don’t know the Scriptures, and you don’t know the power of God.”
Mark 12:24 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Some mistakes are more critical than others. Jesus pointed out the worst. And sadly, we are often guilty of making it! There aren’t any two things more relevant to the way we should live than knowledge of the Scriptures and experiencing God’s power. Yet how many days do we live without the influence of either? Paul tells us, “All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right.” If this is true, why would we live day after day without it? And God’s power? Why would we deny ourselves of such an incredible reality? Jesus was attacking the religious attitudes of the Pharisees. They wanted to argue doctrine, law, and pretense. But Jesus didn’t see rules and rituals; He saw God’s word and power. The author of Hebrews writes, “By his divine power, God has given us everything we need for living a godly life. We have received all of this by coming to know him, the one who called us to himself by means of his marvelous glory and excellence. And because of his glory and excellence, he has given us great and precious promises. These are the promises that enable you to share his divine nature and escape the world’s corruption caused by human desires.” Jesus said, “Your mistake is that you don’t know the Scriptures, and you don’t know the power of God.” Today may God help us to truly know both.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, thank You for giving me everything I need for a Godly life through Your divine power and promises. Help me to know more about your word and power I pray. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Love Others

TODAY’S VERSE
But while knowledge makes us feel important, it is love that strengthens the church.
I Corinthians 8:1 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Knowing the word of God is very important. Peter tells us to, “Be a good worker, one who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly explains the word of truth.” But we can know all about God and still not be a loving person. And without love, the Church will not be what God desires it to be. Paul lets us know this in no uncertain terms. He writes. “If I could speak all the languages of earth and of angels, but didn’t love others, I would only be a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. If I had the gift of prophecy, and if I understood all of God’s secret plans and possessed all knowledge, and if I had such faith that I could move mountains, but didn’t love others, I would be nothing. If I gave everything I have to the poor and even sacrificed my body, I could boast about it; but if I didn’t love others, I would have gained nothing.” Today, let’s not just know God; let’s commit ourselves to love others the way He does.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I am so glad that I know You. Help me also to love the way You want me to.
AMEN

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Grumbling

TODAY’S VERSE
And don’t grumble as some of them did, and then were destroyed by the angel of death.
I Corinthians 10:10 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Life can be hard. Not everything works out the way we plan. That is why God created us with the capacity for resilience. By faith, we can return to joy from negative emotions. But returning to joy is a choice. Sadly, instead of joy, many times, we choose to grumble. Grumbling is different than simple negative emotions. Sadness, disappointment, even anger can be natural reactions to stressful situations, and with time spent in reflection, we can find our way back to joy. But grumbling is different. Grumbling, unchecked, becomes a bitter root that destroys faith, hope, and joy. It grows and festers, blaming, attacking, and rebelling against any and everything that would be cause for its pain. Grumbling eventually attacks the very sovereignty of God Himself. Be warned; grumbling is an offense to God. So today, check yourself. Are you letting anger and frustration get the best of you? Are you blaming and complaining? Are you spending more and more time grumbling? If so, heed the warning of Paul and stop. Repent, seek God’s forgiveness, recognize His profound love for you, and return to joy.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, forgive me for my critical spirit. I repent of grumbling and complaining. Today, I will trust You and return to joy.
AMEN

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Stronger Faith

TODAY’S VERSE
Abraham never wavered in believing God’s promise. In fact, his faith grew stronger, and in this he brought glory to God.
Romans 4:20 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
How does that happen? How does one’s faith grow stronger? Abraham knew God, and his life’s circumstances were continually challenging him, yet his faith grew stronger. Paul shares, “Abraham never wavered in believing God’s promise.” God called Abraham and promised that through him, He was going to start a new nation. When he considered his age and the age and barrenness of Sarah, his wife, he remembered, “God promised.” Time passed, living in tents, and yet he remembered, “God promised.” When he faced the challenge of ending his son’s life on the altar, he leaned on the fact that “God promised.”
Consequently, each time Abraham remembered God’s promise, his faith grew. God’s promises are real, but they do you no good if you don’t know them. Today, get to know God’s word and all the promises He has for you and start to believe for yourself.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, help me know and believe Your promises. Help my faith grow stronger, even today. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Renew My Heart

TODAY’S VERSE
Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting
away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day.
2 Corinthians 4:16 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Have you ever been at the bedside of someone dying from a dreadful disease? It is tragic to watch someone’s body shut down. Over time they begin to waste away. But there is another form of wasting away that is just as tragic. It is the wasting away of our soul. If not careful, we can find our inward person end up in despair, confusion, and helplessness. Our body is but a container for who we are. Paul reminds us that even if we waste away physically, it is crucial that we don’t lose heart. How? By renewing ourselves inwardly day by day. Today, don’t spiritually waste away! Spend time with God, meditate on His word, let His promises soak deep into your soul, and replenish your heart.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I need You to renew my heart. Replenish my soul with Your word and Your love. Fill me with Your Holy Spirit, I pray.
AMEN

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