Category Archives: endurance

Press On

TODAY’S VERSE
I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, – But we must hold on to the progress we have already made.
Philippians 3:13, 16 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
We find ourselves in so many difficult situations. Often it is so hard to discern God’s will. I could easily spend all my time asking, “Why?” I could spend endless hours full of bitterness, fear, or sorrow. But then what? What has this accomplished? Isn’t faith about trusting God even when things don’t go the way we think they should? Isn’t His will for us to let go, trust Him and move on? But we want closure. There must be justice, revenge, or something that has a semblance of fairness. Who says? Who started that rumor? Life is not always fair. Paul said that we see reality as if we were looking through a dark piece of glass. Things don’t always make sense. But God does. And the best advice anyone can give you was given by Paul. He writes, “I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead.” There was too much to do, to much grace to live with, too much love of God to celebrate. Why should Paul spend all his time looking backward? Instead, he forced himself to look ahead. We must too. Why? Because if we are going to make it in this life, Paul says, “We must hold on to the progress we have already made.” Today, hang on to the progress and maturity God has blessed you with. Let go of the past; let it go and press on. Return to joy and live the life God has for you today.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, help me press on and not get stuck in the past. Help me look forward to the life You have for me. Help me see Your love, mercy, grace, and peace. Help me pursue You and all that You have for me. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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What Do You See?

TODAY’S VERSE
The LORD your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing.
Zephaniah 3:17 (ESV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
What do you see? A lot of it depends on what you are looking through. Each of us comes to the Scriptures with different lenses. We see through our experiences, beliefs, senses, and personality. So although scripture is true, we may have a skewed view of it. For example, in today’s verse, what do you believe? When you close your eyes, do you see God as a mighty one who will save you? Or do you have some doubts as to His ability or desire? Do you see God as rejoicing over you with gladness? Is He exulting over you with loud singing? Is He ecstatic in His love for you? Or do you have a hard time feeling like a recipient of that kind of attention from God? Finally, can you picture God quieting you with His love? Does the very thought of God bring peace to your heart? God’s word is true, but unless you read it and challenge your emotional thinking, you will not align your real beliefs with God’s. Today, ask God to help make His word clear to you and start to see what He has for you.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, as I read Your word, help me to see what You really want me to see and to believe it with all of my heart. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Press On

TODAY’S VERSE
I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.
Philippians 3:13-14 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
It is so easy to live in the past. Remorse, grief, disappointment, bitterness, so many painful emotions can keep us in a state of limbo. Paul had regrets; he had persecuted Christians. Paul had disappointments and hardships, but he knew the secret to living with all of life’s ups and downs. He pressed on. He knew when the appropriate time came; it was time to forget. It was time to quit looking behind and trust God for the future. God doesn’t remain in the past, and neither should we. Today, what is keeping you in the past? What has you locked in painful emotions? Give it to God. Forget the past and look forward to what God has ahead. He is not finished with you yet!

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I have hung on to my past. Today, I surrender to You. I quit looking back with regret, sorrow, remorse, and bitterness and will look forward with anticipation, joy, and excitement toward what lies ahead. Today, I choose to trust You. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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More Than A Conqueror

TODAY’S VERSE
In all things, we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.
Romans 8:37 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Life can get hard. There are so many days that I wake up, and I can hardly conquer brushing my teeth, let alone all the battles I have lined up for the day. How can I possibly win the difficulties I am facing? And yet Paul writes, “Does it mean he no longer loves us if we have trouble or calamity, or are persecuted, or hungry, or destitute, or in danger, or threatened with death?” Paul answers, “No, despite all these things.” What things? Despite all these struggles and difficulties, we go through. Despite all that, life can dish out. Paul assures us, “in all things; we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.” Yes, we are more than getting a victory, more than being a conqueror, we are His loved child no matter what the circumstances! Today, when problems come up, when it seems that everything is going wrong, remember that Christ has given you everything you need to be more than a conqueror. He has called you to be His beloved child, an heir with Christ, set free with His blood and given power by His resurrection

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear Father, thank You for making me more than a conqueror over all the difficulties I go through. Thank You for loving me and giving me everything I need to live for You. Help me believe this Father and live in its reality today.
AMEN

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Alive

TODAY’S VERSE
The LORD God formed the man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being.
Genesis 2:7 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
When asked, a group of people who suffered from addictions answered what they “felt” just before they gave in to the craving of their addiction. What was the trigger? What was the deep painful impulse that was driving them? Some of the answers were “worthlessness, lost, disconnection, lack of existence, invisible, bad, evil, void, abandoned, alone, powerless, wrong, not breathing, non-being, humiliated, ashamed and unloved.” Then the same group was asked to visualize taking the drug and verbalize what the drug did for them. What was the promise, what was the relief? They wrote:
“self-discovery, focus for my life, meaning, surrender, will, acceptance by the group, feeling of being alive, freedom, acceptance of desire, living in the moment.” Now here is the catch. Although the desire for positive meaning is real, the lie is that drugs are the solution. It is like the song, “Looking for love in all the wrong places.” It is God that gives the “breath of life.” Jesus provides real meaning. The healing power of God and Christian fellowship is the answer to our deepest pain! God has created us for life. We are not supposed to go around feeling like a non-being. Instead, Paul prays that we would have the power to understand how wide, how long, how high, and how deep Christ’s love for us is. It is in experiencing God’s love for us that we are made complete with all the “fullness of life and power that comes from God.” Today, let the love of Christ breathe life deep into your soul and make you alive.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I want to live, really live. Help me find true meaning and purpose in Your love for me. Fill me with Your life-giving breath. Fill me with Your Spirit and make me more alive today than I have ever been.
AMEN

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Recipe For Life

TODAY’S VERSE
Make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love.
II Peter 1:5-7 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Salsa is only as good as its ingredients. Avocado, diced tomatoes, onion, the list of ingredients goes on. Mixing everything together, gathering chips, it was time to taste this masterpiece. As I took my first bite, I was dumbfounded as to how bland the taste was. Knowing the person who prepared the dish, I knew it had to be an error. Sure enough, upon reviewing the recipe, salt and lime juice were missing from the experience. What a difference two ingredients can make. By adding the two missing elements, the taste that the chef had initially been intended, was brought forth. Likewise, God has given us a recipe for life, and Peter encourages us to make every effort to include all the ingredients needed. We are to start with faith and add goodness. Next, add knowledge, self-control, and perseverance. Finally, we add the zest: Godliness, brotherly kindness, and love. These eight ingredients combine to give us the kind of life God desires for us. Peter ends his thoughts this way. “For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.” Today, ask God to take these ingredients and help you add them, little by little, to your own life’s recipe.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, help me have the faith I need to live for You. With this faith in place, help me add, day by day, goodness, knowledge, self-control, perseverance, Godliness, brotherly kindness, and love. I pray this in Jesus’ Name.
AMEN

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More Than Conquerors

TODAY’S VERSE
In all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.
Romans 8:37 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
For most of us, it is hard to get our hands around the meaning of conqueror. Most of us know little about the word. Sure we win the occasional argument, get our proposal passed, even get our children to listen to what we say, but that is far from being a vanquisher of all that comes against us. Paul knew that we would be in Spiritual battle. He knew that we would face life’s issues point-blank and our flesh, the world, and the Devil would do everything they could to discourage and defeat us. That is why the Spirit of God had him write that even in “trouble, hardship, persecution, famine, nakedness, danger or sword” we are more than conquerors. Not just conquerors, more than conquerors. The best way I have heard it described was by Rick Renner in his book, “365 Days of Power”. He writes, “I boldly declare that in Jesus Christ, I am a conqueror who is utmost, paramount, foremost, first-rate, first-class and top-notch; greater, higher, and better than; superior to; preeminent, dominant, incomparable; more than a match for; unsurpassed, unequaled, and unrivaled by any challenge that would ever try to come against me! I declare this in Jesus’ name!” Today, let us believe the same about ourselves.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Thank You, Lord, that You have given me power, in the Holy Spirit, to overcome adversity, discouragement, and every Spiritual attack that besets me. Help me take my eyes off my past defeats and look to Your love and the power of Your resurrection available to me today. Thank You, Lord, that today I am more than a conqueror in Christ Jesus my Lord.
AMEN

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His Grace Is Enough

TODAY’S VERSE
Each time he said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me.
II Corinthians 12:9 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Sometimes it is hard to hang on. Tragic news, delayed answers, unfulfilled dreams, disappointing outcomes; it is easy to get discouraged. But God knows what we are going through. He invites us to share our cares with Him. We can call upon God’s great love, goodness, and mercy to sustain us. Even Jesus knew what it was to throw Himself at the mercy of God. When facing His eminent torturous death, He cried out to His father, “My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.” And though He died, God’s grace never left Him. The Father took the cup of death from Him when He rose from the dead. What is it you need relief from? What has you down and discouraged? What is it that seems so overwhelming? Bring it to Jesus. Lay your burden at the foot of the cross and hear Jesus say to you, what He said to Paul, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” Might you find His grace enough for you today.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, thank You that no matter what my circumstances, You promise that Your grace will be sufficient for me. Your wisdom will guide me. Your love will embrace me and draw me to Your side. I choose to live my life today in that reality. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Two Sins

TODAY’S VERSE
My people have committed two sins: They have forsaken me, the spring of living water, and have dug their own cisterns, broken cisterns that cannot hold water.
Jeremiah 2:13 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Separation from God usually comes in two phases. First, we start to stray. Little by little, we start to forsake fellowship, fail to meditate in His word and spend less and less time in prayer. Good things take us from the more important. Urgent begins to replace the best. How subtle the path is. We end up farther and farther away from the spiritual milieu that once fed our soul. Second, we not only stray we actually find a new home. Jeremiah says not only do we forsake the spring of living water; we actually go out and dig our own cisterns, broken cisterns that cannot hold any water. They look great on the outside but are empty on the inside. Where are you today? Are you straying farther and farther from God? Have you actually moved away and found other interests that take top priority in your life? Stop! Go no farther. Turn back. Come to your Heavenly Father today and ask Him to cleanse your heart and put a new thirst in your soul leading you back to His spring of living water.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, forgive me for straying from You. I have forsaken Your living waters and have attempted to quench my own thirst. I admit that I am still thirsty. I know that only You can satisfy, and I ask Lord that You would fill my cup today with Your life-giving presence.
AMEN

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Holding On

TODAY’S VERSE
Since we have a great high priest who has gone through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet was without sin. Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.
Hebrews 4:14-16 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Holding on. Have you ever felt like that’s all you can do? Things are out of control. You are not sure what to do? The question is, “What do you hang on to?” The author of Hebrews says that we should “hold firmly to the faith we profess.” But this is not some “blind” faith. Instead, we hold on to a faith that is in a God who cares and empathizes with our situation. Jesus knows what it is to be human, to suffer, to be tempted, to be abandoned, beaten, and killed. He also knows how to love unconditionally, to forgive every imaginable sin, to be tempted and not give in, and to rise from the dead. Is it no wonder that the author gives one of the most incredible pieces of advice ever given? He writes, “Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence.” He is suggesting that you can come boldly right into the presence of God without the worry of repercussion. And what will you get when you enter right into the very presence of God? He promises that you will receive mercy and find grace to help you in your time of need. So today, when you feel anxious or worried, hold on! If you find yourself alone and depressed, hold on! If everything you hear is negative and panic sets in, hold on! If you become angry and bitterness starts to fester, hold on! Hold on to His mercy and grace; they will never fail.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I come to You and hold on today. I thank You that You are the great High Priest that never sinned but became the perfect sacrifice for my sin. I place my faith in You, dear Father, and come to Your throne of grace with confidence. Thank You for Your mercy and grace that is always there in my time of need.
AMEN

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