Category Archives: Christian Living

Everlasting Love

TODAY’S VERSE
Long ago the LORD said to Israel: “I have loved you, my people, with an everlasting love. With unfailing love I have drawn you to myself.”
Jeremiah 31:3 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
It is hard to accept God’s love. We are taught from a young child to do good. If we do good, if we get good grades, make sports teams we will be liked by people. It sets us up to believe that love is “earned,” not given freely. Worst, some learn that love can be taken away. Is it a wonder that the love of God gets lost in the translation? In his book “The Deeper Journey”, author M. Robert Mulholland Jr. writes, “We fear that we might not be valued. If our false self’s identity is rooted in our performance, then our value must necessarily be rooted in how well we perform. Consequently, our false self attempts to perfect our performance, at least in our own estimation.” Is this not where fear and anger rise up amongst us? We are afraid that someone else’s success will rob us of value. Does not anger rise up inside us when we find something getting in the way of what we think we must have or do in order to be appreciated and loved? Instead, God has told us Himself that He has loved us with an everlasting and unfailing love. Everlasting in that it never ends. It is unquenchable, unconditional, and undeserving. It is unfailing because nothing will stop it from reaching its objective. We are the object of God’s love and nothing will stand in the way of Him expressing that love to us. So today, rejoice in the love that God has for you. You don’t have to earn it! Let the joy of His undying love for you cast away all of your fear and anger.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I thank You that I am valued and loved. Thank You that I do not have to earn it. Help me today to really get my thoughts around Your unconditional love for me. it.
AMEN

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Pursuing You

TODAY’S VERSE
Surely your goodness and unfailing love will pursue me all the days of my life.
Psalms 23:6 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Psalms 23 is perhaps the most popular passage in the Bible. Parts like, “Though I walk through the shadow of death I will fear no evil” make it a favorite at funerals. At the end of the chapter, there is a glorious verse. Usually, it reads, “Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever.” It sounds so poetic but do we really understand the meaning? Today’s passage says it in a slightly different way, a way that really brings out the true meaning. It reads, “Surely your goodness and unfailing love will pursue me all the days of my life.” See the difference? It is not some passive “following”. It is not a result of any good we have done. Instead, it says that God “pursues” us with His unfailing love and goodness. Not just temporarily, but all the days of our lives! He pursues you. If you ignore Him, He pursues. If you take Him for granted, He pursues. Even if you turn your back on Him, His unfailing love and goodness pursue you. Today, live in the joy that God is pursuing you with His love.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Oh Father, thank You for Your pursuing me with Your unfailing love and goodness. Today, help me live in the joy of that reality.
AMEN

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Loving God

TODAY’S VERSE
You must love the LORD your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your strength, and all your mind.
Luke 10:27 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
God created us for a relationship with Himself. His purpose is for us to love Him. Specifically, we are to love Him with all our heart, soul and strength. But how do we do this? In his book “Sacred Companions” Dr. Benner writes, “To know God we must think of Him, not simply about Him. We must learn to spend time gazing on Him, being still before Him and focused on Him. And we must learn to listen to Him. These disciplines of loving attention form the basis of the development of a love relationship with Him.” But what do we do if we find it hard to love God with all our heart? Dr. Benner suggests “God doesn’t want me to try to be more loving. He wants me to absorb His love so that it flows out from me. And so I return again to knowing myself as deeply loved by God. I meditate on His love, allowing my focus to be on Him and His love for me, not me and my love for Him.” Today, let your love for God grow by taking time to be still before Him and focus on His incredible love for you.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, thank You for Your love for me. Help me to understand it more fully so I can learn to love You with my whole heart.
AMEN

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Are You Shining THe Light?

TODAY’S VERSE
You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead, they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house.
Matthew 5:14-15

TODAY’S THOUGHT
What is the purpose of light? It is to invade the darkness. That’s right. We often fear that darkness is going to overcome us but the truth is darkness does not have power. It does not attack us. Darkness can only happen when there is an absence of light. So, what have we done with the light that God has given us? Do we put it on the hill so all can see? Do we go to the darkest places we can find and let the light of love and the gospel shine forth? No. Instead, we build our own islands of light, good for us but no others. We build our fortress in order to keep the darkness out when in truth there is enough light for everyone. We could prevent the darkness but we have hoarded the light. Might we hear God’s call – be GIVERS of the light! Rise up, use your spiritual gifts – give away the light – invade the world’s darkness. Today, give away hope, peace, love, joy, and God’s good news – GIVE AWAY THE LIGHT!

TODAY’S PRAYER
Oh, Father, Maker of Light, You have invaded my dark heart, but I am guilty of hoarding it. Forgive me. Help me to invade the darkness and give away Your light. Might all around be delivered from darkness!
AMEN

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Everything We Need For Life and Godliness

TODAY’S VERSE
His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him.
II Peter 1:3 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
How many times have we felt inadequate in a situation? If only there was something that could help us? It is easy to feel this way about our spiritual life. How can we live for God? How can we live this Christian life the way He wants us to? By ourselves, we can’t. But the good news is, “He has given us everything we need for life and godliness.” How? Through knowing Him and His promises. What a blessing! Capture the scope of what Peter is saying, he has “given us everything we need for life and Godliness!” Today, spend time and get to know God. Talk to Him. Ask Him to reveal Himself to you. If you will spend time getting to know God, you will find that He does indeed have everything you need for life and godliness.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear God, I want to live the life You want me to, but I can’t do it by myself. I need You. I need Your promises. Reveal Yourself to me today and in the days to come, so I can get to know You more and more and live the life You desire for me.
AMEN

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We Need To Walk The Talk

TODAY’S VERSE
What good is it, my brothers, if a man claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save him? Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to him, “Go, I wish you well; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about his physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead. But someone will say, “You have faith; I have deeds.” Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by what I do.
James 2:14-18

TODAY’S THOUGHT
There is a world in such need, but we are so busy we don’t see it. We are so inwardly focused, so concerned about our own welfare, we don’t stop to help others. That is not the way of Christ! Our churches should be making huge differences in our communities, but we don’t. Often we are trying to be the best church in the community. But the author, Eric Swanson challenges us and says that instead, we should try to be the best church for and with the community. That is Christ’s way. When will this change? It can change TODAY if you and I decide to do something. Today, we can make a difference in someone’s life if we just open our eyes and hearts. We can encourage others in our church to make a difference. May God help us to “walk our talk.”

TODAY’S PRAYER
Lord Jesus, help me see other peoples’ needs with Your eyes. Bring someone into my life today who needs help. Give me the mercy to stop, the wisdom to know what to do and then the love to do it. Thank You, God, for all You have done for me; help me do for others.
AMEN

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The Fruit of the Spirit

TODAY’S VERSE
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.
Galatians 5:22 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. What a list. It is easy to focus on each attribute and begin to feel overwhelmed by the challenge to master each one. But that is not what today’s verse is suggesting. Rather, it is saying that the list of attributes is the result of living in the Spirit. It’s the Spirit’s fruit. In nature, if we want fruit, we have to nourish the tree it grows on. Fruit is only produced when the tree is healthy. Likewise, when we fellowship with the Spirit, live in harmony with His direction and follow His leading every day, the Spirit’s fruit will be produced in our lives. As the Holy Spirit instructs, rebukes, guides and comforts us, and if we respond to His voice, we will experience His fruit.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear Holy Spirit, I want Your fruit to grow in my life. I know that is only possible through letting You guide my life. Help me hear Your promptings. Let me experience fellowship with You today. Guide me in all things. Fill me, Holy Spirit. In Jesus’ name, I ask it.
AMEN

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