Category Archives: Spiritual Gifts

Do It Again Lord

TODAY’S VERSE
Give us, your servants, great boldness in preaching your word. Stretch out your hand with healing power; may miraculous signs and wonders be done through the name of your holy servant Jesus.’ After this prayer, the meeting place shook, and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit. Then they preached the word of God with boldness. All the believers were united in heart and mind. And they felt that what they owned was not their own, so they shared everything they had. The apostles testified powerfully to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and God’s great blessing was upon them all. There were no needy people among them, because those who owned land or houses would sell them and bring the money to the apostles to give to those in need.
Acts 4:29-35 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Is there any wonder why the Church grew so mightily in the first century? Men and women who had known Jesus Christ, who had experienced mighty miracles and had seen Jesus rise from the dead, were now filled with the Holy Spirit. They were on a mission to share God’s forgiveness and grace to everyone they could. How does today’s passage compare to your church or personal Christian experience? Erwin McManus, in his book, “The Barbarian Way,” writes, “Somehow Christianity has become a non-mystical religion. It is about reasonable faith. If we believe the right things, we are orthodox. Frankly, whether we ever actually connect to God or experience His undeniable presence has become incidental if not irrelevant.” Sadly, what McManus is saying is true. Today let us repent of our “reasonable faith” and join those in Acts asking God to fill us with His Spirit and give us boldness in sharing about Christ. Let us ask God for His healing power and miraculous signs and wonders. Finally, let us share with those in need, be united in our hearts and mind, and testify powerfully of the resurrection of our Lord Jesus. May it be said of us that “God’s great blessing was upon them all.”

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, forgive us for powerless orthodoxy. Forgive us for our lack of faith and sacrifice. We pray for holy boldness in our church. We pray for Your miraculous hand to come upon us and do mighty works. We pray for the unity of hearts and minds. Might the places we worship be shaken. In Jesus’ Name.
AMEN

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Created To Do Good

TODAY’S VERSE
For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
Ephesians 2:10 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
It is amazing to study how the cells in the body all work together to survive as an organism. Insects work in hives all working in unison. Systems throughout the universe are in motion working in harmony. But then there is mankind. How dysfunctional can we get? It is every person for their own self. This is not God’s desire. God created humans to exist in a system that has each of us looking out for the interests of others. He created love to be our model of coexistence. As Christians, God created us in Christ to do good works. The author of Hebrews writes, “And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased.” And the world needs love in action. There are so many weary, hurting, broken, saddened, terrified people all around us. Every family has a story. So today volunteer. Just show up. Let God know that you will be willing to help someone and then be available. He will lead you. He will guide you to someone who needs your help. And you will be blessed, for there is nothing better than doing what you were created to do. After all, you have been called by God Himself to do good works, which He prepared in advance for you to do!

TODAY’S PRAYER
Lord, I know that You have created me to do good. I know that it is Your desire, yet I need You to guide me. Direct me to someone who needs what I have. Someone who will benefit from the way you have wired me. Guide me, then empower me to do the good that You have prepared in advance for me to do. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Be Filled With The Spirit

TODAY’S VERSE
Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is. Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit.
Ephesians 5:15-18 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
What do you really know about the Holy Spirit? We can go to church for years, go to Bible studies and small groups and yet never really learn much about the Holy Spirit and its relevance to our life. Sure, we know we have been given the Holy Spirit but we never take advantage of the relationship that we could have. But we cannot afford to be passive any longer. We were not meant to function without the aid of the Holy Spirit. Paul says we should be “filled” with the Holy Spirit. What does this mean? The key is in comparison to being drunk on wine. There is only one way to get drunk. You get drunk by being “filled” with alcohol until the amount that you consume has you under its influence. This is not a casual drink that is in moderation. This is in excess of where you become drunk. So what is he saying about our life in the Spirit? Paul is saying that we should have the same insatiable appetite for the guidance and fellowship of the Holy Spirit that a person does that chooses to get drunk on wine. When we meditate on God’s word, pray and commune with the Holy Spirit, we will begin to be “filled” or “under the influence” of the Holy Spirit’s leading in our daily living. It is interesting, however, that the tense is not a “one-time” filling, but actually means “be filled and keep on being filled.” You do not get drunk on wine once for the rest of your life. The effect of the wine soon dissipates. To continually be drunk you have to continually drink the wine. Although the Holy Spirit does not leave us, in order to stay “filled” or influenced by the Holy Spirit, we need to continually stay in communication and fellowship with the Holy Spirit. Isn’t it time that we experience all that being filled with the Spirit has to offer us?

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear Holy Spirit, please forgive me for ignoring Your presence in my life. I ask You to guide me, lead me, commune with me and fill me so that I am completely influenced by Your presence. I invite You to take control of my life. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Encourage Others

TODAY’S VERSE
Worry weighs a person down; an encouraging word cheers a person up.
Proverbs 12:25 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Every day is full of choices. So often we find ourselves at a fork in the road. Choices between faith or doubt; forgiveness or anger; right or wrong; yes or no; worry or trust. For many worry is their daily choice. Whether it is financial, relational or situational, they have dug themselves into a pit and can’t seem to get out. Life is lonely in the pit. Every day they try to get out, but no one stops to help. That is what God has called you and me to do. Today’s passage says, “Worry weighs a person down; an encouraging word cheers a person up.” You and I have been charged to be an encourager. We too find ourselves at a fork in the road. We can ignore someone else’s pain, or we can help them. We can stay busy minding our own business or we can stop to comfort someone else. We can judge, blame, condemn others for getting themselves in a mess or we can extend a hand. We can go our own way, or we can encourage them both in word and action. Today commit yourself to be an encourager. Ask God to bring someone into your life you can minister to. As God has encouraged you, might you encourage others.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father help me to encourage other people. Help me to be kind, considerate and to treat others in the way I want to be treated. Today might I speak Your grace and love to other people that they may find the encouragement they need.
AMEN

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Your Spiritual Gifts

TODAY’S VERSE
In his grace, God has given us different gifts for doing certain things well. So if God has given you the ability to prophesy, speak out with as much faith as God has given you. If your gift is serving others, serve them well. If you are a teacher, teach well. If your gift is to encourage others, be encouraging. If it is giving, give generously. If God has given you leadership ability, take the responsibility seriously. And if you have a gift for showing kindness to others, do it gladly.
Romans 12:6-8 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Are you aware that God has given you certain passions and abilities to use for His glory? God has given every believer at least one spiritual gift for doing His will in this world. And then His Holy Spirit nudges you to use it through a strong desire to serve Him in a way that seems to make sense for you. Paul gives examples like serving, teaching, giving and leadership. So, if different people all see a need, like helping the homeless in the community, He could motivate one to serve food at a shelter, another to teach at a job readiness class, another to give of their income to provide for the needed shelter and yet another to lead a church to get involved. Each person reacted to the same problem through the way God motivated them, using the gifts he blessed them with. Today, ask God to reveal to you the different ways you could serve Him. He has given you spiritual gifts and will show you when and where to use them.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, thank You that You have given me spiritual gifts. Help me learn everything I can about them and help me use them for your glory.
AMEN

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Love Others

TODAY’S VERSE
While Jesus was having dinner at Matthew’s house, many tax collectors and ‘sinners’ came and ate with him and his disciples.
Matthew 9:10 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
So often we forget that God loves all of mankind. Jesus came and exemplified this. We get so caught up in our Churches, small groups and Bible studies that we can’t remember how to relate to everyday normal people. Jesus expects us to be good neighbors. He desires that we share His love with those that don’t know what it is like. The Pharisees did not get it. They were offended that He ate with “sinners.” In response to their disdain, Jesus said, “Healthy people don’t need a doctor—sick people do.” Then he added, “Now go and learn the meaning of this Scripture: ‘I want you to show mercy, not offer sacrifices.’ For I have come to call not those who think they are righteous, but those who know they are sinners.” There are people all around us in need. Broken hearts, addictions, depressed, lonely, angry, poor, hungry. Wonderful people needing someone to stop and show mercy and love. Someone to invite them in and eat with them. Someone to be their friend. God has called you and me to be that someone. Today let Jesus love someone through you. Look around and ask God who He wants you to befriend.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, thank You for Your love and mercy in my life. Help me go and give the same to others. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Are You Shining THe Light?

TODAY’S VERSE
You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead, they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house.
Matthew 5:14-15

TODAY’S THOUGHT
What is the purpose of light? It is to invade the darkness. That’s right. We often fear that darkness is going to overcome us but the truth is darkness does not have power. It does not attack us. Darkness can only happen when there is an absence of light. So, what have we done with the light that God has given us? Do we put it on the hill so all can see? Do we go to the darkest places we can find and let the light of love and the gospel shine forth? No. Instead, we build our own islands of light, good for us but no others. We build our fortress in order to keep the darkness out when in truth there is enough light for everyone. We could prevent the darkness but we have hoarded the light. Might we hear God’s call – be GIVERS of the light! Rise up, use your spiritual gifts – give away the light – invade the world’s darkness. Today, give away hope, peace, love, joy, and God’s good news – GIVE AWAY THE LIGHT!

TODAY’S PRAYER
Oh, Father, Maker of Light, You have invaded my dark heart, but I am guilty of hoarding it. Forgive me. Help me to invade the darkness and give away Your light. Might all around be delivered from darkness!
AMEN

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Everything We Need For Life and Godliness

TODAY’S VERSE
His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him.
II Peter 1:3 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
How many times have we felt inadequate in a situation? If only there was something that could help us? It is easy to feel this way about our spiritual life. How can we live for God? How can we live this Christian life the way He wants us to? By ourselves, we can’t. But the good news is, “He has given us everything we need for life and godliness.” How? Through knowing Him and His promises. What a blessing! Capture the scope of what Peter is saying, he has “given us everything we need for life and Godliness!” Today, spend time and get to know God. Talk to Him. Ask Him to reveal Himself to you. If you will spend time getting to know God, you will find that He does indeed have everything you need for life and godliness.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear God, I want to live the life You want me to, but I can’t do it by myself. I need You. I need Your promises. Reveal Yourself to me today and in the days to come, so I can get to know You more and more and live the life You desire for me.
AMEN

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We Need To Walk The Talk

TODAY’S VERSE
What good is it, my brothers, if a man claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save him? Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to him, “Go, I wish you well; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about his physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead. But someone will say, “You have faith; I have deeds.” Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by what I do.
James 2:14-18

TODAY’S THOUGHT
There is a world in such need, but we are so busy we don’t see it. We are so inwardly focused, so concerned about our own welfare, we don’t stop to help others. That is not the way of Christ! Our churches should be making huge differences in our communities, but we don’t. Often we are trying to be the best church in the community. But the author, Eric Swanson challenges us and says that instead, we should try to be the best church for and with the community. That is Christ’s way. When will this change? It can change TODAY if you and I decide to do something. Today, we can make a difference in someone’s life if we just open our eyes and hearts. We can encourage others in our church to make a difference. May God help us to “walk our talk.”

TODAY’S PRAYER
Lord Jesus, help me see other peoples’ needs with Your eyes. Bring someone into my life today who needs help. Give me the mercy to stop, the wisdom to know what to do and then the love to do it. Thank You, God, for all You have done for me; help me do for others.
AMEN

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Your Real Purpose

TODAY’S VERSE
For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.
Ephesians 2:10 (NLT)

TODAY’S MESSAGE
Some people search a lifetime for a purpose. Why am I here? Where can I find meaning? We look for this bigger than life significance and we can’t find it. We search for something that will fill this hollow feeling inside. There is a craving in our soul that we can’t satisfy, a thirst that we cannot quench. It’s like the song says, “we are looking for love (purpose) in all the wrong places.” All the while the Bible gives a very fundamental answer to the secret of life satisfaction. Paul sums up our purpose in one simple verse. You and I will never be happy, never feel fulfilled until we figure out what Paul is saying. He says that you and I are the workmanship of God, His masterpiece! A specific, personally made, creation by Almighty God Himself. More than that, we were created for this one simple thing, to do good works! That’s it. Our meaning, purpose, life satisfaction comes from living for God, from loving in His name, from doing good because He created us specifically to do good. What joy, what purpose, what meaning to know that we are hand-picked agents of God’s good in this world. Do you believe this? Are you living this? If not, you can start today!

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear God, help me to fully understand what it means to be Your workmanship, created for good works. Help me to comprehend that You really know me, love me deeply and have specifically called me to be Your representative in this world. Thank You for such a glorious calling. Help me today to do Your good works which You prepared me to do before I was even born. You are my creator, I am Your servant. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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