Category Archives: Grace

In His Presence

TODAY’S VERSE
So then, since we have a great High Priest who has entered heaven, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to what we believe. This High Priest of ours understands our weaknesses, for he faced all of the same testings we do, yet he did not sin. So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most.
Hebrews 4:14-16 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Because of the death and resurrection of Christ, we can come into the very presence of God and receive all the mercy, grace, and help we need, just when we need it most. What a significant truth this is! Amazingly, God allows us to spend time in His presence. What is even more amazing is how many of us don’t spend that precious time with Him. In his book “Experiencing Healing Prayer,” the author, Rick Richardson, writes, “My heart was receptive – As we walk the healing journey, no other single thing we can do, may have a greater impact than learning to listen to God. God’s voice is the healing voice, just as God’s presence is the healing presence. We must hear the voice of God reverberate in our soul, exposing the lies about our unlovability, worthlessness, or despair and speaking to us the truth. We must.” Christ has done everything needed so we can come boldly and confidently into God’s presence. Today, do it! Listen to Him. Be confident that He desires to speak the truth of your lovability and worth to you and make you whole. When you do, you will find all the mercy, grace, and love you need.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Thank You, dear Lord, for providing a way that I can come into Your presence. Thank You that Christ is my High Priest, and I can go boldy into Your presence. Thank you for the confidence I can have that You will give me all the mercy, grace, and help I need to make it through this day. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Fellowship With Jesus

TODAY’S VERSE
God is faithful, by whom you were called into the fellowship of his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.
I Corinthians 1:9 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
When you wake up in the morning, who do you think you are? What purpose do you have for the day? Perhaps you think, “I’m a mother and need to take care of my children.” Or, “I am an employee; I need to get ready for work.” No matter what you need to be or do, Paul challenges you also to consider that by God’s grace, you have the privilege of fellowshipping with Christ today. If you woke up with that thought, how would that affect the way you start your day? What attitude would it give you? What joy would there be in your heart? The truth is that God chose you to fellowship with Him. Jesus desires that you become consciously aware of His presence, actively involved in a dialog with Him. He wants to share in your joys and sorrows, your victories and defeats, your greatest pleasures, and most mundane tasks. Today, choose to fellowship with Him. Choose to include Him in your day. Share, pray, meditate, and talk to Him. God has called you to fellowship with Him.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Lord Jesus, thank You for Your invitation to fellowship with You. Help me to appreciate and fully understand what that means. Help me today to begin to fellowship with You in more profound and meaningful ways. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Love

TODAY’S VERSE
So if you sinful people know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give good gifts to those who ask him.
Matthew 7:11 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Sometimes I get it all backward. I come to God with a need asking Him for help. Then for whatever reason, the thought comes to me that I am unworthy of God’s graciousness. This shame causes me to doubt whether God would want to do anything good for me. It takes all my faith away. However, when I read this passage, I realize it’s not about me! It’s about God. God is love, and it is His love for me, not my worthiness, that needs to be my focus. And why not? Even fathers, as imperfect as we are, know how to give gifts to our children. Jesus used this as His illustration pointing out that if we, in all of our limitations and sinfulness, know how to do good to our children, how much more will our heavenly Father give good gifts to those who ask Him? God loves you. He loves you and desires to provide you with what you need. All He wants you to do is ask. Today, ask. Ask without shame or doubt. Your heavenly Father adores you.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I thank You for Your love. Forgive me when I let insecurities and lies lead me to a place of unbelief. Help me focus on Your love and rest in the fact that I am intrinsically lovable. Thank You, dear Father, for making me that way and giving me so many wonderful gifts.
AMEN

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Coming To Our Senses

TODAY’S VERSE
When he finally came to his senses, he said to himself, “At home even the hired servants have food enough to spare, and here I am dying of hunger! I will go home to my father.”
Luke 15:17-18 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
It has only recently that we have understood why so many hidden emotions drive us. With the rise of the neurosciences, we have come to know more about intrinsic memory. What has been hidden can now become integrated into who we are. We can take all the negative beliefs, lies, and wounds that we have from our past and bring them to God. He, in turn, can reveal to us the truth of who we really are in these memories and help us change the way we believe about life and our self. This has been life-changing for me and the hundreds that I have taught. Insight also changed the prodigal son. For whatever reason, he too was driven and decided to leave home and spend his life doing whatever he wanted to. No pleasure was out of the question. But like so many others, there was a price to pay. Soon he found himself in desperate straits. It was at that point that Jesus said, “He finally came to His senses.” And I love what the son did next. Jesus said that he went home to his father. My friend, it is our Heavenly Father that can correct all our negative thinking. It is His love that can tell our hurting child inside us that all is well; we are loved. Our Father is waiting. He is happy to be with us; He longs to tell us the truth of who we are. Today, come to your senses. It is God who wants to forgive, to love, to heal, to set free. His grace is sufficient.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I come to You with so many needs. So many emotions drive me. I need You to correct my thinking, heal my memories, and help me re-envision who I am. Father, I have come to my senses. I am coming to you. Help me see myself through Your eyes.
AMEN

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Ambassador For Christ

TODAY’S VERSE
So we are Christ’s ambassadors; God is making his appeal through us. We speak for Christ when we plead, “Come back to God!”
II Corinthians 5:20 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
What a privilege. We become many things in our lifetime. Child, spouse, parent, student, employee are among our many roles. We grow up, get a job, establish a career, and if it works out, enjoy a vocation. But nothing in life is nobler than being called to be an ambassador for Christ. It is a calling because Christ purposely chose you and me to serve Him. It is through us that Christ cries to the world, “Come back to God!” And how is all this possible? Paul answers that by stating that we have become “a new person.” He writes, “The old life is gone; a new life has begun!” This is a gift from God, who helped us come back to himself through Christ. And then God gave us the task of doing the same for other people. So today, consider your life. See it the way God does. He sees you as His beloved Child and His ambassador. Go then and compel others to “come back to God!”

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, thank You for saving me. Thank You for making me Your child and giving me the privilege of being Your ambassador in this world. Help me fulfill this calling through the power of Your Holy Spirit.
AMEN

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Love Others

TODAY’S VERSE
But while knowledge makes us feel important, it is love that strengthens the church.
I Corinthians 8:1 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Knowing the word of God is very important. Peter tells us to, “Be a good worker, one who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly explains the word of truth.” But we can know all about God and still not be a loving person. And without love, the Church will not be what God desires it to be. Paul lets us know this in no uncertain terms. He writes. “If I could speak all the languages of earth and of angels, but didn’t love others, I would only be a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. If I had the gift of prophecy, and if I understood all of God’s secret plans and possessed all knowledge, and if I had such faith that I could move mountains, but didn’t love others, I would be nothing. If I gave everything I have to the poor and even sacrificed my body, I could boast about it; but if I didn’t love others, I would have gained nothing.” Today, let’s not just know God; let’s commit ourselves to love others the way He does.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I am so glad that I know You. Help me also to love the way You want me to.
AMEN

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God’s Love

TODAY’S VERSE
For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Romans 8:38-39 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
There are two ways to look at today’s passage. The first is the most obvious. God in His omnipresence is everywhere you go and nothing can separate you from Him or His love for you. It is God-dependent. God has taken on the challenge always to love you no matter what outward circumstances you may be in. And He can do this because, as John writes, “God is love.” But there is another reality that is hidden in today’s verse. That is your own “inward state awareness of God’s love.” As you mature, you assimilate your circumstances and influences around you. You allow them to create in you an inner state of being. It is like a person who has a loving caregiver knows, even when they are separated for long lengths of time, they are still loved by that person. The love was just as real in the person’s absence as in their presence. This is because, over time, the consistency of the love of their caregiver had become part of their inner state of being. How much more can this be true of God? God has created you with the ability to know His love. Know it in such a profound way that even in dire circumstances, you can experience His loving presence. As you fellowship with God and get to know His heart, His love will create in you a trusting confident state of mind. You will be convinced that what Paul said is true. Nothing can separate you from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, thank You for Your deep love for me. Thank You for allowing me the privilege of knowing You and having Your love become a part of my very being. Help me to trust in that love.
AMEN

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Shame and Grace

TODAY’S VERSE
May our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loved us and by his grace gave us eternal encouragement and good hope, encourage your hearts and strengthen you in every good deed and word.
II Thessalonians 2:15-17 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Shame and grace are perhaps the two of the most potent words in molding and shaping our beliefs about ourselves. Shame keeps us from accepting all the love God has for us. Grace invites us to embrace it. Lewis Smedes, in his book, “Shame and Grace,” writes, “The feeling of shame is about our very selves – not about something we did or said but about what we are. It tells us that we are unworthy. Totally. It is not a few seams in the garment of our selves need stitching; the whole fabric is frayed. We feel we are unacceptable.” How do we overcome such devastating feelings? How can we ever shake such deep emotion? Only through God’s grace. Paul says that it is God who loves us and by His grace gives us encouragement and hope. His grace encourages our hearts and strengthens us. Smedes writes, “Grace overcomes shame by simply accepting us, the whole of us, with no regard to our beauty or our ugliness, our virtue or our vices. We are accepted wholesale. Accepted with no possibility of being rejected. Accepted once and forever. Accepted at the ultimate depth of our being. We are given what we have longed for in every nook and nuance of every relationship.” Amazing grace, how sweet the sound. Are you listening? Today, read this devotional again and believe. God’s grace says it all. You are loved.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Oh, Father, melt my heart. Open me and pour your grace deep into my soul. I believe, but today help my unbelief. Lord, I renounce my shame and accept your unconditional love. Flood my being with the joy of Your grace I pray.
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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Strength and Song

TODAY’S VERSE
The LORD is my strength and my song; He has given me victory. Songs of joy and victory are sung in the camp of the godly. The strong right arm of the LORD has done glorious things!
Psalms 118:14-15 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
I love the two words, “strength” and “song” together. They go hand in hand; His strength, our song. Here is the Psalmist. He had seen God’s strength move on his behalf resulting in a great victory, and his heart bursts out in singing. That’s because sometimes words alone are not enough. Our soul must express itself in melody. And yet, how many times do we fail to respond to all that God has done for us? Remember the ten lepers that Jesus healed? Only one came back to give thanks. Can you imagine? Forget a victory in battle. Their body, full of putrefying skin, had just been miraculously healed! Yet nine out of the ten that were healed did not even say, “Thanks.” And sadly, Jesus noticed. He asked the one who returned, “Where are the other nine?” Unfortunately, we do the same today. Where are our praising hearts? Where are the songs of our souls that lift to the heavens in adoration for all that He has done for us? We have no excuse. We have been so blessed. Today let’s raise our voices in praise for all His strength on our behalf.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, my heart sings in praise and adoration for all You have done for me. You are the Almighty and all-loving God who has saved me for all eternity. I thank You and praise Your Holy name.
AMEN

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