Category Archives: Grace

Overcoming Fear

TODAY’S VERSE
For God hath not given us the spirit of fear, but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.
II Timothy 1:7 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
We often think of fear as the reaction to scary events, like the screams in a horror movie. But some of our most fearful behavior is often hidden from us. Many people who are living daily in fear aren’t even aware of it. In “Surrender To Love” Dr. Benner writes, “One of the things that block us from gaining freedom from fear is that most fearful people don’t think of themselves as afraid. Unless their fears are focused on something external (such as snakes, heights or crowds), most people in bondage to fear, fail to recognize the true nature of their inner distress. – Although the object of one’s fears may seem to be external, the real source of the fear is internal. The danger is within. The enemy is one’s own self or at least some aspect of their self.” This is what Paul was trying to get across. We are so focused on our behavior we don’t see the motivation behind it. Paul called it a “spirit of fear”. It is this internal pervasive fear that controls what we do. It is spiritual and emotional. Satan is a liar and accuser so he fills our head with fear. Our own experience and belief systems do the rest. If we take most of the fear we have, we will see that it is a fear because of what we think and believe. But today’s passage says that we do not have to live in that kind of fear. Why? Because God has given us something else. He has given us power, love and a sound mind. What an alternative to anything we would dread. Every spirit of fear can be defeated either by God’s power, love or the sound mind He has given us. So today, when you are tempted to act out of fear, remember, there are other options. Give the power, love and the sound mind that God has given you a chance.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I thank You for not giving me a spirit of fear. Today, I want to live in Your power, love and sound mind that You have given me.
AMEN

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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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God’s Faithfulness

TODAY’S VERSE
The LORD who delivered me from the paw of the lion and the paw of the bear will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine.
I Samuel17:37 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
If we would remember all the times that God delivered us from trouble we would enjoy a much more peaceful life. So many times I start my day as if it was the only day I have ever lived. Now I don’t mind forgetting some of the bad things in my life but when I begin to live as if God were not alive then I need to do some memory exercises. God has created us with a powerful memory so we could grow mentally, socially and spiritually. Throughout the Bible, we are admonished to “remember” the goodness of God. Hope, peace, faith all come out of a memory of God’s faithfulness in the past. David was going to fight Goliath and all he took with him was a sling, five smooth stones and memory of God’s deliverance. Listen to what he said when he went to face the giant. “The LORD who delivered me from the paw of the lion and the paw of the bear will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine.” What are you facing? What giant is between you and victory? Remember God’s faithfulness in the past and trust Him with today.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, thank You for Your faithfulness in my life. Help me remember all the good things you have done and how you have acted on my behalf. Then when trial and struggles come, help me step out in faith knowing that you are the same today that You were yesterday.
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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Praise God With Your Whole Heart

Praise God With Your Whole Heart

TODAY’S VERSE
Let all that I am praise the Lord; with my whole heart, I will praise His Holy name.
Psalms 103:1

TODAY’S THOUGHT
It is easy to live day by day and never really take the time to praise God. Part of this is due to the fact that we have relegated worship and praise to one hour a week. We have segmented our lives with spirituality being only a small part. Even when we do participate at church in corporate worship it is often just intellectual assent. The words barely sink in. It is not wholeheartedly. This is not the way God intended our worship to be. Instead, God wants us to praise Him with everything that is inside us. David wrote, “Let ALL that I am praise the Lord!” This includes our emotion, knowledge, and personality. He wants us to praise Him with our “whole” heart. It is not a “half-hearted” affair. God wants our all. Everything we are and hope to be. Today, praise God for all that He is. Praise Him for what He has done. Praise Him with everything you have, praise Him with your whole heart. Truly God is worthy!

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I come now to praise Your Holy name. I praise You for all that You are. I praise You from my whole heart. I sincerely love You and praise You with everything inside me. Praise You, Lord!
AMEN

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Forgiveness

TODAY’S VERSE
Praise the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits- who forgives all your sins.
Psalms 103:2-3 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
What a beautiful plan. God creates us for fellowship with Him. Like Adam and Eve, God allows us a free will so we can choose to love Him and follow His ways. All the while God knows that He has created us with a human condition that tempts us to stray from Him and His Holy standard. Yet because of His unconditional love for us, He is able to forgive every transgression through the substitutionary death of Jesus Christ on the cross. John writes, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” Today, confess anything that is between you and God. Get your conscience clear with Him. When you do, God promises to forgive.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, thank You for the Holy Spirit that convicts me of things that are wrong in my life. Thank You for Jesus Christ who took my place on the cross. Guide me today and help clear my conscience with You. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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You Are Valuable

TODAY’S VERSE
So don’t be afraid; you are more valuable to God than a whole flock of sparrows.
Matthew 10:31 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
We are valuable to God! Why is it that I wrestle with that so much? Why can’t I accept the fact that God’s love defines my value, not my performance, material belongings or status? I have value because God says I do! It is the lack of believing in our value that causes us to create a false self. In “The Deeper Journey”, M. Robert Mulholland Jr. writes, “As our false self manages our life, we fear that we might not be valued. If our false self’s identity is rooted in our performance, then our value must be rooted in how well we perform. – To the extent our false self guides our life, we fear others. Life with others is a constant threat to our false self. – Others are constant threats to that fragile structure we have created to provide ourselves with identity, meaning, value and purpose.” Jesus came to declare how valuable we are. He would not have wasted His life and died the horrible death He did for something of little value. No, He came to redeem the most valuable thing to Him in the whole universe, the human race. Today, know that you are loved by God. Know that you are valued by Him.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, thank You that You love me and created me with value. Might the thought that I am valuable to You change my life today and set me free from the fear and bondage of trying to earn Your love. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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