Category Archives: discipleship

Mind Control

TODAY’S VERSE
Therefore, dear brothers and sisters, you have no obligation to do what your sinful nature urges you to do.
Romans 8:12 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
How often we feel trapped. We try and try and still give in to sinful desires. Cravings, habits, negative behavior, painful emotions have us running in circles. And then Paul comes and says we don’t have any obligation to do what our sinful nature urges us to do. What a prospect, but how? He gives the secret when he writes, “Those who are dominated by the sinful nature think about sinful things, but those who are controlled by the Holy Spirit think about things that please the Spirit. So letting your sinful nature control your mind leads to death. But letting the Spirit control your mind leads to life and peace.” If you know Christ, you have the Spirit of God in you. Today, make it your obligation to follow God and ask the Holy Spirit to control your mind.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear Holy Spirit, control my mind today and help me think and do those things that please You.
AMEN

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Know Him

TODAY’S VERSE
I know the greatness of the LORD
Psalms 135:5 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Psalms 135 is full of praise for our Lord. The Psalmist lists many attributes of God that are praise-worthy and speaks of His mighty acts. He has taken time to notice, appreciate, and remember the good things that he knows about God. And that made the difference. He knew. He knew the greatness of the Lord. The word “know” is more than intellectual knowledge; it is experiential. The Psalmist witnessed God in action. He became acquainted with His ways, spent time in His presence, and had personal knowledge of God. So much so he could write with confidence that he knew the greatness of the Lord. Today decide to change your focus. Change from knowing about the greatness of the Lord to experiencing it. Then you, too, will be praising Him.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear Lord, thank You for all that I know about You. But today, I want more. I want to know Your greatness. I want to know You. Help me, I pray. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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The Holy Spirit

TODAY’S VERSE
And the Holy Spirit helps us in our weakness. For example, we don’t know what God wants us to pray for. But the Holy Spirit prays for us with groanings that cannot be expressed in words.
Romans 8:26 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
How often we would take our children’s place if we could. We would face their humiliation, fight their battles, take their sickness, anything to spare them pain and suffering. Then why is it a surprise that God Himself wants to intercede for you in the person of the Holy Spirit? The Holy Spirit knows your weaknesses and wants to help you. When you are beside yourself and don’t know what to pray, the Holy Spirit is on the other side, groaning out to God on your behalf. Today, know that God is for you. He loves you. He knows everything about you. And you can stop worrying; the Holy Spirit is feverishly praying for you.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear Holy Spirit, thank You for praying on my behalf. Help me today. Guide me, fill me, lead me, direct me. I need You and humbly summit myself to You.
AMEN

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Drifting

TODAY’S VERSE
Don’t let me drift toward evil.
Psalms 141:4 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Drifting. It can take you by surprise. You think you are heading in the right direction, but suddenly you are somewhere you don’t want to be. You could be crossing a large lake in a canoe and think you are heading toward your destination, but the boat’s drift will take you way off course. There are only two cures. The first is to not drift in the first place. This is what the Psalmist asked God to help him with. Stay away from things that take you in the wrong direction. Get rid of anything that starts you to waiver. The second is to re-correct your course. When you feel yourself drifting, you correct yourself and move back toward your destination. The scriptures, prayer, meditation, good Christian fellowship all help us re-correct our path. Today, check your bearings. Where are you spiritually? What can you do to get back on course? What can you do to stop from drifting?

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear Father, help me not drift away from You. Help me continually re-correct my course.
AMEN

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Transformed

TODAY’S VERSE
Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind.
Romans 12:2 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Humans have lived in this world for a long time. Being adaptive creatures, we conform to the environment we live in. How many things do we do every day out of habit? Habits that are nothing more than conforming behavior to what we learned in the world. What automatic thoughts, assumptions, beliefs do we subscribe to because we have conformed to the surroundings we live in? To be transformed means to change our nature or character. That is what Christ wants to do with our life. He desires that we become more like Him, so He transforms our minds. He gives us the Holy Spirit to guide this whole process. Soon our thinking, values, beliefs, assumptions begin to align with the mind of Christ. This can happen to you. Today, quit conforming to the world’s values and ask God to transform you by renewing your mind.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear Father, forgive me for conforming to the thinking of this world. Today come in the power of the Holy Spirit and transform my mind so I can be more like You.
AMEN

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Wait

TODAY’S VERSE
The Scriptures give us hope and encouragement as we wait patiently for God’s promises to be fulfilled.
Romans 15:4 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
It is so hard to wait. When we are full of panic, anger, or dread, a minute can seem like an eternity. We want to do something. When a situation drags on and on, we begin to wonder, “Will it ever end?” We start to run out of patience, but the good news is that God is there. In every situation, He can give us hope and encouragement if we wait for it. Without God, waiting is the hard part. But with God it is a totally different experience. Isaiah assures us, “They who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.” Paul also adds to our reason to wait on God with a beautiful benediction, “I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.” Today wait patiently on the Lord.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear Father God, the source of hope, please fill me completely with joy and peace as I trust in You. Help me overflow with confident hope through the power of Your Holy Spirit. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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God Hears

TODAY’S VERSE
Come quickly, LORD, and answer me, for my depression deepens.
Don’t turn away from me, or I will die.
Psalms 143:7 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
How I thank God for David’s honesty. When I went through a dark season in my life, the Psalms were an oasis for my soul.
I would come to today’s verse and feel a deep assurance that God knew exactly how I felt. Why? Because He understood David’s plea. David cried out to God in his depression and requested, “Let me hear of your unfailing love each morning, for I am trusting you. Show me where to walk, for I give myself to you.” It was this deep trust in God that led him to the assurance that he would be delivered. David finishes the Psalm by writing, “May your gracious Spirit lead me forward on a firm footing. For the glory of your name, O LORD, preserve my life. Because of your faithfulness, bring me out of this distress.” Today, come to God with your deepest concerns, with your heavy heart, and walk away like David with the full assurance that God has heard your cries and will lead you forward.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear Father, I come to You today knowing that You hear my concerns, that You care for me, and I can trust You. Thank You for Your love.
AMEN

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Your Spiritual Gift

TODAY’S VERSE
In his grace, God has given us different gifts for doing certain things well.
Romans 12:6 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Are you using your spiritual gifts? Do you know what yours are? We don’t talk much about them. But Paul does. Here in Romans 12, Paul addresses that when God gives us a Spiritual gift, we need to use it to our best ability. He writes, “So if God has given you the ability to prophesy, speak out with as much faith as God has given you. If your gift is serving others, serve them well. If you are a teacher, teach well. If your gift is to encourage others, be encouraging. If it is giving, give generously. If God has given you leadership ability, take the responsibility seriously. And if you have a gift for showing kindness to others, do it gladly.” Paul shares that each of us has a spiritual gift that we can serve God with. Today, ask God to show you yours. Ask Him to use it in your life.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear Father, show me my Spiritual Gift and help me use it for Your glory. In Jesus’ Name.
AMEN

For a FREE Spiritual Gifts Inventory that I have written, go to http://www.empowerministry.org/gifts

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Maturity

TODAY’S VERSE
Dear brothers and sisters, when I was with you I couldn’t talk to you as I would to spiritual people. I had to talk as though you belonged to this world or as though you were infants in Christ. I had to feed you with milk, not with solid food, because you weren’t ready for anything stronger.
I Corinthians 1:1-2 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
It is one thing to see a baby behaving like a baby but totally inappropriate for an adult. An assumed maturity should come with age, but sadly, this is not always the case. Emotionally we can be stuck in “arrested development.” Spiritually Paul says we can be stuck in infancy. Instead of growing at a reasonable rate in our faith, we become more nominal. In the letter to the Galatians, Paul writes, “The Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.” This is the growth God desires. He promises if we abide in Him and He in us, we will bear much fruit. Today, make it your goal to grow in Christ.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear Father, I want to grow in my faith. I want to grow in my knowledge of Christ. I want to grow in my relationship with You. Help me I pray.
AMEN

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Our Father

TODAY’S VERSE
In peace I will lie down and sleep, for you alone, O LORD, will keep me safe.
Psalm 4:8 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
In the Lord’s Prayer Jesus, told us to pray to God, saying, “Our Father.” And then He told us to ask our Heavenly Father to do His will on earth, as it is in heaven. There is peace in knowing a loving Father, a mighty Father, and an all-wise Father. David knew God in that way, and even during troubled times, he could commit himself to God’s loving arms when he was about to sleep. His Father would keep him safe. Paul confirmed this when he wrote, “So you have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves. Instead, you received God’s Spirit when he adopted you as his own children. Now we call him, ‘Abba, Father.’” We can come to God and call Him our loving Father, Daddy, or Papa. It is through this re-fathering that we will know lasting peace. Isaiah assured us of this when he wrote, to God His Father, “You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you!” Today, come to your Heavenly Father. Trust Him, and He will give you peace.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear Father, help me to know You in this deep paternal sense. Re-father me, I pray. Help me to grow into the child You have created me to be.
AMEN

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