Category Archives: Faith

Hope Does Not Disappoint

TODAY’S VERSE
We rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us.
Romans 5:2-5 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Births and funerals. Health and disease. It seems that life has its contrasts. On one hand, we have the promised land, on the other, we have the wilderness. None of us go through life unscathed. We all have trials and difficulties. Some self-inflicted, others inflicted upon us. Paul knew that the temptation during difficulties is to complain and give up, so he wrote to the church in Rome to encourage them during their time of persecution. Paul admits to them that on one hand we have our hope of heaven and on the other hand we have suffering in this life, but he instructs us in both circumstances to rejoice. I understand the rejoicing in the hope of heaven, but why would Paul say that we should rejoice in our sufferings? Paul says we should rejoice in our sufferings because of “hope.” Hope is the word that makes all the difference. Our suffering produces perseverance, which produces character, which results in hope. But what really makes hope spectacular is what Paul writes next. Five words: “Hope does not disappoint us!” Hope in Christ will never fail. Today, you may have disappointment. You may have difficulties. But friend, today you also have hope!

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, today, where there is darkness, help me see hope. Where there is pain, help me feel hope. Where there is disappointment, help me realize hope and where there is doubt, fear and anxiety, help me know hope. Father, thank You that You promised Your hope will not disappoint us. I receive Your hope today. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Lord, Renew Your Deeds Today

TODAY’S VERSE
LORD, I have heard of your fame; I stand in awe of your deeds, O LORD. Renew them in our day; in our time make them known.
Habakkuk 3:2

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Have you ever read a passage of scripture that seems to express the longing of your heart? This verse expresses mine. Every time I read the Scriptures, I end up marveling at God’s deeds. How magnificent! How mighty! As I read the life of Jesus, I cannot help but think of how merciful and full of love He is. And yet, as I see my life, as I see the church today, as I see our country, I cannot help but pray what Habakkuk prayed, “Renew your deeds in our day; in our time make them known.” I believe God has stayed His hand. I believe He is waiting for the church to believe that He is mighty today and not just in the past. He is waiting for us to lay down our materialism, our preoccupation with success, fame, and riches. I believe He is waiting for those of us who go to church on Sunday to want His Lordship on Monday. We need the prayer of Habakkuk to flood our churches, to be on the lips of our people. It needs to be our passion, our plea, and our deepest desire. We need the Lord. We need His mighty power in our life. Today marvel at all that God has done in the past and then ask Him to do it again in your life. He is waiting for us to ask.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, how I marvel at Your mighty deeds. How I stand in awe of all that You have done. Dear Lord, I need Your power in my life. I come today and ask that You would again do Your mighty deeds. Make Yourself known to my world. Work in my life today that others might see and stand in awe of You. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Behold His Beauty

TODAY’S VERSE
One thing have I desired of the LORD, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the LORD, and to inquire in his temple.
Psalms 27:4 (ESV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
I remember when I first saw my wife. People had told me about her. They said that we would be a great couple. One friend, who was trying to match us up, brought me a magazine article with her picture in it. That was it. I was smitten. I beheld her beauty. It was more so when I finally met her. While we were dating, I would catch myself looking at her. Still today, I am moved by her presence. This is more than a visual experience. It is emotional and existential. Why? Because I fell in love with her. Did you know that you can behold God in the same way? You can. God has given us an “inner eye,” that spiritual ability to connect with Him in a deep and personal way. David knew this, so he made it his most passionate desire. He wrote, “One thing have I desired of the LORD, that will I seek after; to behold the beauty of the Lord.” If you can do that, everything else in life will fall in line. Today, stop and ask God to help you “behold His beauty.” Commit yourself to spend time in His presence, read His word, meditate on His goodness and you will begin to fall in love with God.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, help me begin to behold Your beauty. Help me know You, hear You, fellowship with You. Help me trust You, commit myself to You, and love You. Lord, I know this is a process but it is one I deeply desire. Start today, Father, and guide me into a deeper relationship with You. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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The Unseen Real

TODAY’S VERSE
Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.
II Corinthians 4:16,18

TODAY’S THOUGHT
The presence of God is a reality that we can experience. He is the God who is there. Unfortunately, we can go day after day and never be conscious of His reality. Leanne Payne in her book “Listening Prayer” writes, “It is especially easy for modern people to regard the supernatural world and activities as somehow less real than the world we behold with our senses. As twentieth-century Christians, we live in a materialistic age in which our systems of learning have long based their conclusions on scientific truth alone. The presuppositions of such systems have misled many generations of students, blinding them to the truths of God and the Unseen Real.” Paul says that he did not lose heart because of the reality of fixing his eyes on what is unseen. The unseen reality of God renewed his heart, day by day. David said he was not shaken by life’s experiences because he experienced God at his side. How about you? Is God’s presence a reality in your life? Do you renew your heart day by day because of the reality of His presence in your life? It’s not too late. Start today to experience His reality. Spend time with God, talk to Him, ask Him to reveal Himself to you. When you do, you will find out that He really is the “Unseen Real.”

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, my life is so full of everything else but You. I spend so much of my time without any awareness of Your presence. I confess, I have kept You at a safe distance, turned You into a religious relic. Forgive me. Today, reveal Yourself to me, Lord renew my heart by Your unseen reality. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Be Strong and Courageous

TODAY’S VERSE
This is my command—be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.
Joshua 1:9

TODAY’S THOUGHT
We read the Biblical stories and we tend to feel that those in the scriptures are superhuman. The truth is, they were people just like you and me. If there is a difference, it is the fact that they heard from God and, in Joshua’s case, decided to believe what God said. God chose Joshua to replace Moses as leader of the Jewish nation and lead them into the promised land. But God knew the task ahead and he knew Joshua. He knew that Joshua was a normal person with passions, fears, and struggles. So, when God appointed Joshua as the leader, Moses met with him three times and told him to be strong and courageous. Then God called Joshua and Moses to appear before Him and personally told Joshua, “Be strong and courageous.” Can you imagine the impact that would have had on Joshua? To have Moses tell him three times and then meet with God face to face, and hear God tell him the same thing? But that was not enough. After Moses died, God personally called Joshua and spoke directly to him four more times. Each time God told Joshua to “be strong and courageous”. What did God know about Joshua that would cause Him to tell Joshua, directly and indirectly, eight times that he was to be strong and courageous? He no doubt knew that Joshua was a man just like you and me and that he needed to put his feeble faith in a supernatural God. That is what Joshua did and God delivered him and the Jewish nation into the promised land. What is it that you need courage for? What do you need strength for? Remember today what God reminded Joshua of eight times, “Be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For I AM with you wherever you go.”

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, you know all about me. You know how I need You. Today You have told me, like You told Joshua, not to be afraid but to be strong and courageous. Oh, Father, tell me again and again until like Joshua, I get it. I bring You my fears and my doubts, for You promised that You are with me wherever I am. Please help me, to be strong and courageous. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Quit Complaining and Get Moving

TODAY’S VERSE
As Pharaoh approached, the people of Israel looked up and panicked when they saw the Egyptians overtaking them. They cried out to the Lord, and they said to Moses, ‘Why did you bring us out here to die in the wilderness? Weren’t there enough graves for us in Egypt? What have you done to us? Why did you make us leave Egypt? Didn’t we tell you this would happen while we were still in Egypt? We said, ‘Leave us alone! Let us be slaves to the Egyptians. It’s better to be a slave in Egypt than a corpse in the wilderness!’ But Moses told the people, ‘Don’t be afraid. Just stand still and watch the Lord rescue you today. The Egyptians you see today will never be seen again. The Lord himself will fight for you. Just stay calm.’ Then the Lord said to Moses, ‘Why are you crying out to me? Tell the people to get moving!’” Exodus 14:10-15

TODAY’S THOUGHT
It is so easy to complain. I think if we had steak for five days in a row we would probably complain! “What, steak again?” The Jews had fled Egypt, not because of some clever plan cloaked in the darkness of night, but because of the incredible miracles of God. Now God brought them to the edge of the Red Sea. Without faith, it looked like a dead end. It looked like an impossibility that they would ever escape. So they did what comes so naturally, they complained. Their conclusion said it all, “It’s better to be a slave in Egypt than a corpse in the wilderness!” Moses tried to console them to no avail; so Moses did what he often did. He talked to God, face to face. God’s answer was swift and to the point, “Why are you crying out to me? Tell the people to get moving!” How about you? Do you find yourself complaining about the situation you find yourself in? Do you have a hard time looking through the “eyes of faith”? There is a time to cry out to God and there is a time to get moving. Which is it for you?

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I find it so easy to complain. How I must grieve Your heart! Forgive me. I find it so hard to trust. I feel stuck. Help me, Lord. You know my situation. I can’t move without You. Have mercy on me! Give me a boost; hold Your rod up and part the seas. Help me get moving today and cross on dry ground. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Trust God In The Darkness

TODAY’S VERSE
I can never get away from your presence! If I go up to heaven, you are there; if I go down to the grave, you are there. If I ride the wings of the morning, if I dwell by the farthest oceans, even there your hand will guide me, and your strength will support me. I could ask the darkness to hide me and the light around me to become night—but even in darkness, I cannot hide from you. To you, the night shines as bright as day. Darkness and light are the same to you.
Psalms 139:7-12

TODAY’S THOUGHT
There is a difference in trusting God when things are going well and when everything seems to go all wrong. It can get so difficult. Sometimes we just end up in the dark. However, we are reminded by Isaiah that we can trust God in the darkness. Isaiah says even “without a ray of light, trust in the Lord and rely on your God.” David shares that we can never be anywhere that God is not present. He says that to God, the night shines as bright as day and that darkness and light are the same to him. Robert M. Cheyne wrote, “If I could hear Christ praying for me in the next room, I would not fear a million enemies! Yet distance makes no difference. He is praying for you.” Neil Anderson has written many books on spiritual darkness and in his book Praying By the Power of the Spirit writes about his own time in darkness. He had to lean on his faith. He had to make a choice to “never doubt in the darkness what God has shown me in the light.”
Where are you today? Are you in the light? Praise God, soak it in. Be thankful, learn at the feet of Christ so you will have plenty to guide you in the dark. Are you in the dark today? Stop for a moment. Quiet yourself. Listen for His voice. He is there with you. Remember the light and walk in the darkness with the same faith. The light will come in the morning!

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear Father, it is so hard in the darkness. Thank You that nothing can separate me from Your love. Even here in the dark, You are with me. Help me to trust You. Help me not to doubt in the dark what you have shown me to be true in the light. Thank You, Lord, that even this will pass; light will come in the morning.
In Jesus’ name. AMEN

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