Category Archives: patience

Grace, Truth, and Time

TODAY’S VERSE
The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.
John 1:14 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Jesus came to earth to be our Savior. He came to give us an abundant life. The way He does this is through the very expression of who He is. We see this in today’s passage. Jesus, or as John calls Him, the Word, came from the Father, took on a human form and was full of grace and truth. It is grace that saves us. Grace that sustains us. God’s grace that forgives us. But it is His truth that corrects us, directs us and as Jesus said, “Sets us free.” Dr. Henry Cloud talks about this in his book, “Changes That Heal.” He claims that it is the combination of God’s grace and truth that gives us the balance we need to live an emotionally healthy life. Grace without truth would never lead to true change. Truth without grace would never allow us the space we need to fail and start over. We need both. Dr. Cloud adds one more ingredient. He adds time. How wise. When we take the grace of God to forgive, the truth of God to guide and we add time, true maturity results. Today may we rejoice in God’s wonderful plan for our spiritual growth.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, how I thank You for Your wonderful amazing grace that loves me unconditionally. Thank You for Your truth that has as its aim, my maturity. And Father, thank You for the time and patience that You have given me in order that I may mature in You.
AMEN

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Keep On Keeping On

TODAY’S VERSE
Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.
Matthew 7:7-8 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
I have probably fought with this passage more than any other portion of scripture. How many times have I had to pray over situations that seemed impossible without God’s intervention? Overcoming mental anguish, living in poverty wondering how the bills were going to be paid, facing a near-fatal illness of a loved one, rebuilding a failing relationship, seeking direction when I didn’t have a clue what to do. I am sure you can add your own experiences to this list. And so you find your self before God praying. Nothing happens so you pray again and again. After a while you begin to wonder, “God are You there?” That soon turns to, “God do You care?” There is a saying that the definition of insanity is to keep doing the same thing over and over again, expecting different results. And that is how you feel. You start to doubt and then God brings you back to this passage. You read with tears in your eyes, “Keep on asking”, “Keep on seeking”, “Keep in knocking”. So you have to make a choice. Is this insanity or is it faith? There is a huge difference. The difference is God. God is in the picture so every time we pray we know that the God who is able to do all that we ask is there. He cares and He hears our prayers. He knows our situation and has not abandoned us. Because we have prayed He is moved. And so we keep on keeping on. We live by faith, we ask by faith and many times we have to wait by faith. But it is faith in the God who is there. The God who knows. The God who cares. So today, let us again hang on to His promise, “Everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks finds. And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.”

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I come to You in faith. I come asking, seeking and knocking. I come in faith believing that everyone who asks, receives, everyone who seeks, finds and to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.
AMEN

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The Fruit of the Spirit

TODAY’S VERSE
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.
Galatians 5:22 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. What a list. It is easy to focus on each attribute and begin to feel overwhelmed by the challenge to master each one. But that is not what today’s verse is suggesting. Rather, it is saying that the list of attributes is the result of living in the Spirit. It’s the Spirit’s fruit. In nature, if we want fruit, we have to nourish the tree it grows on. Fruit is only produced when the tree is healthy. Likewise, when we fellowship with the Spirit, live in harmony with His direction and follow His leading every day, the Spirit’s fruit will be produced in our lives. As the Holy Spirit instructs, rebukes, guides and comforts us, and if we respond to His voice, we will experience His fruit.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear Holy Spirit, I want Your fruit to grow in my life. I know that is only possible through letting You guide my life. Help me hear Your promptings. Let me experience fellowship with You today. Guide me in all things. Fill me, Holy Spirit. In Jesus’ name, I ask it.
AMEN

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Great Advice

TODAY’S VERSE
Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters: You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry. Human anger does not produce the righteousness God desires.
James 1:19-20 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
How many times have we regretted something we said or did? We were too hasty, reacting before we could think. How much pain have we caused acting out of anger not concerned of the consequences? James admonishes us to be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry. How different would our life be if we would follow this simple advice? How more effective would we be in our job, ministry or dealing with those in our family? What opportunities to heal and bless others would be ours if we would submit to this behavior code? Today, we can make a choice. Choose to listen. Choose to think before we speak. Choose to pray before we act out our anger. With God, all things are possible.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear Heavenly Father, I ask for Your help this day to watch my tongue and emotions. Help me to really listen to others. Help me to be careful before I speak and help me control my temper. Fill me with Your Holy Spirit so I can be more like Your son Jesus.
AMEN

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What Are You Remembering?

TODAY’S VERSE
I remember my affliction and my wandering, the bitterness and the gall. I well remember them, and my soul is downcast within me. Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope: Because of the LORD’s great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness.
Lamentations 3:19-23 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHTS
What we choose to dwell on impacts our thinking and eventually our actions. Jeremiah had plenty to lament about. God’s mission for him was difficult. He had to wander about the land with a thankless job. If he dwelled on it, he became bitter and downcast. But Jeremiah had a choice, he could also remember God’s faithfulness. When he did, it lifted his spirits. He learned the secret to abundant living. He discovered how to have hope. He decided to meditate on the fact that God was not finished with him yet! That God’s compassion toward him NEVER fails. He recalled how God’s compassionate thoughts toward him are new every morning. Jeremiah’s conclusion was that God’s faithfulness is indeed great! How about you? When you start your day, what do you think about? What do you remember? Is your soul downcast or are you excited about God’s love for you? Today, choose to dwell on God’s great compassion and let it give you the same hope that it gave Jeremiah.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear Father, forgive me for dwelling on the negative. I stop now to give You thanks. Thank You that this morning You had compassionate thoughts about me. In fact, today, You are thinking tender thoughts about me. Help me really believe that. Let it shape my thoughts today. Thank You for Your great faithfulness. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Encouragement

TODAY’S VERSE
Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them.
Ephesians 4:29 (NLT)

TODAY’S MESSAGE
What a wonderful calling. What a tremendous privilege is ours. God has called us to be an encourager. Encouragement. It can change a person’s life; alter the destiny of families. Nations can rise and fall – alright, maybe not that dramatic, but who can deny the power of encouragement? How many of us have been overwhelmed, about ready to give up and someone stopped and in a loving moment, poured encouragement all over us? Is there anything more refreshing? God loves the whole world and He has chosen you and me to be His messenger of encouragement. Might He lead us to someone in need of encouragement today.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear Father, I thank You for all the times You have sent encouragement my way. I pray that today You might help me be an encourager to someone who so desperately needs it. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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His Name Is Hope

TODAY’S VERSE
Look at my Servant, whom I have chosen. He is my Beloved, who pleases me. I will put my Spirit upon him, and he will proclaim justice to the nations. He will not fight or shout or raise his voice in public.
He will not crush the weakest reed or put out a flickering candle. Finally, he will cause justice to be victorious. And his name will be the hope of all the world.”
Matthew 12:18-21 (NLT)

TODAY’S MESSAGE
You can tell a religion by the God it follows. We follow Jehovah who manifested Himself a man in the person of Christ Jesus. He could have chosen to come as a ruler, a dictator, a mighty military leader or a tyrant. Instead, He came to earth as a humble savior. Isaiah says that Jesus came to proclaim justice. He came to be our hope. He did not come to crush the weakest reed or put out a flickering flame. What a picture Isaiah is painting. Here we are – many times messy, needy and weak. We get beat up, confused, tempted and tired. What does Jesus do? Does He step all over us? Does He crush the reeds? No, not even a faint brush to disturb them. Does He rant and rave? Does He blow out the littlest bit of a flame that we have left? No, He does nothing that would cause the flame to go out. His name is Hope! Hope is what our soul thirsts for. Today, hope in His unconditional love for you.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear Father, what a picture of Your love for me! I need Your love. I need Your understanding, Your mercy, and Your total forgiveness. I fully receive them right now. I praise You for Your kindness. I shout with joy even now for Your unconditional love for me. Thank you, Jesus. My hope is in you! In Your Holy name, I pray.
AMEN

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