Category Archives: Thankfulness

Harmony

TODAY’S VERSE
So then, let us aim for harmony in the church and try to build each other up.
Romans 14:19 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
You would think that the church would be a place where each person is building the other up, but it’s not always the case. We can hurt each other, just like any other social group. Apathy, jealousy, gossip, anger, and bitterness often run rampant in the church. That is why Paul said to “aim” for harmony and to “try” to build each other up. We do that by submitting to the leading of the Holy Spirit. When we do, the Holy Spirit produces in us His fruit of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. This enables us to build each other up in ways that will result in harmony. So today, ask the Holy Spirit to guide you, mold you, and use you and let us aim for harmony and begin to build each other up.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Dear Holy Spirit, I invite You to produce Your fruit in my life. I want to live in harmony with others and help build them up. 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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Gratitude and Thanksgiving

TODAY’S VERSE
Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.
I Thessalonians 5:18 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
In his book The Power Of Habit, Charles Duhigg talks about “keystone habits.” A keystone habit is a habit that brings about a cascade of changes resulting in a considerable outcome. Exercise is a keystone habit. It affects our energy, attitudes, health, body image, many things that can result in a significant change in our life. The practice of planning our day the night before can cause many small behaviors that result in a substantial change. Thankfulness is a Spiritual Keystone Habit. Can you imagine what would happen in your life if you created a habit of gratitude and thankfulness? You would be more open to God’s direction. You would stop letting anger, worry, and fear derail your life. You would be more optimistic and open to opportunities to move through your situations instead of getting stuck in them. Thankfulness is a spiritual discipline that will change everything! But more than that, giving thanks in all our circumstances is God’s will for your life! Today begin to develop the keystone habit of thankfulness.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, how often I react to life with negativity and discouragement. I know that You want me to give thanks in all things, but so often I fail. Today, help me Lord build the habit of gratitude and thankfulness so my life will glorify You.
AMEN

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Renew My Heart

TODAY’S VERSE
Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting
away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day.
2 Corinthians 4:16 (NIV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Have you ever been at the bedside of someone dying from a dreadful disease? It is tragic to watch someone’s body shut down. Over time they begin to waste away. But there is another form of wasting away that is just as tragic. It is the wasting away of our soul. If not careful, we can find our inward person end up in despair, confusion, and helplessness. Our body is but a container for who we are. Paul reminds us that even if we waste away physically, it is crucial that we don’t lose heart. How? By renewing ourselves inwardly day by day. Today, don’t spiritually waste away! Spend time with God, meditate on His word, let His promises soak deep into your soul, and replenish your heart.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I need You to renew my heart. Replenish my soul with Your word and Your love. Fill me with Your Holy Spirit, I pray.
AMEN

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What Do You See?

TODAY’S VERSE
The LORD your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing.
Zephaniah 3:17 (ESV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
What do you see? A lot of it depends on what you are looking through. Each of us comes to the Scriptures with different lenses. We see through our experiences, beliefs, senses, and personality. So although scripture is true, we may have a skewed view of it. For example, in today’s verse, what do you believe? When you close your eyes, do you see God as a mighty one who will save you? Or do you have some doubts as to His ability or desire? Do you see God as rejoicing over you with gladness? Is He exulting over you with loud singing? Is He ecstatic in His love for you? Or do you have a hard time feeling like a recipient of that kind of attention from God? Finally, can you picture God quieting you with His love? Does the very thought of God bring peace to your heart? God’s word is true, but unless you read it and challenge your emotional thinking, you will not align your real beliefs with God’s. Today, ask God to help make His word clear to you and start to see what He has for you.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, as I read Your word, help me to see what You really want me to see and to believe it with all of my heart. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Mighty Things

TODAY’S VERSE
With God’s help we will do mighty things.
Psalms 108:13 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Hope can go a long way in helping us through this life. But this was more than hope. It was more than a belief. It was an expectation! David, though he was a humble shepherd boy, knew that with God’s help, he would do mighty things. It was this belief that helped him overcome Goliath. It was this belief that made him a mighty King. David’s belief in God doing mighty things caused him to start the Psalm by writing, “My heart is confident in you, O God.” It was this confidence that got him up in the morning and got him through the day. It was his confidence in the power and love of God that got him through the tough parts of life that he faced. He knew that God would help him do mighty things. How has knowing God changed your expectations? What mighty things are you trusting God for? Today, put your hope in God. He loves you and desires to do awesome things in your life. With God’s help, you will do mighty things.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, help me believe You for mighty things today. I pray that Your Holy Spirit will give me a vision worthy of Your power. Indeed, with Your help, dear Lord, I will do mighty things.
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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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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Praise God

TODAY’S VERSE
With all my heart I praise the LORD, and with all that I am I praise his holy name! With all my heart I praise the LORD! I will never forget how kind he has been. The LORD forgives our sins, heals us when we are sick, and protects us from death.
Psalms 103:1-4 (CEV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
It is so easy to get wrapped up in our everyday situations that we take all that God is doing for granted. Our hearts start to wither at the lack of praise in our life, and then we read a passage like today’s. You can sense how David’s heart was full of praise toward God for all His love and kindness. When I read, “With all my heart I praise the LORD, and with all that I am I praise his holy name! With all my heart I praise the LORD!” it was like air to the lungs of a suffocating person. I could feel my soul gasp for the spiritual air, just like a person does when they are resuscitated. My heart longs to worship Him, to sit in His presence, and remember how kind He has been. To muse on all the forgiveness He has showered me with. To praise Him for healing and protecting me. It is not too late. Today, I can remember. Today, I can praise Him with all my heart. And so can you. Today, let us praise Him together.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, how I praise You for all Your kindness. How I praise You for forgiving me. How I praise You for Your protection. You are worthy of all my praise. I praise Your Holy name.
AMEN

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We Live By Faith Not Sight

TODAY’S VERSE
For we live by believing and not by seeing.
II Corinthians 5:7 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
I sometimes wonder what was wrong with the disciples? They were with Jesus. They saw Him every day, they saw the miracles, they heard the teachings, and yet, how many times did Jesus have to say, “Oh, you of little faith!” Thomas wouldn’t believe in the resurrection until he saw Jesus and the nail prints in His hands. So Jesus told him, “Thomas, you believe because you have seen with your own eyes. How blessed are they who believe and yet have not seen?” And that is our lot. We believe without seeing. We live by faith. Paul writes, “Now we see things imperfectly as in a cloudy mirror, but then we will see everything with perfect clarity.” We live in what John Wimber called the “here and not yet.” It means that the Kingdom of God has come to earth, but we are not in Heaven yet. The good news is, in this world, God has assured us that faith is enough. With faith, we can have hope and certainty. Paul concludes, “We live by believing, not by seeing.” Today, trust God. Put your faith in Him. Look at life with your spiritual eyes, and you will see that faith has a sight of its own.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, forgive me for my lack of faith. Today I choose to put all my trust in You. Guide me I pray.
AMEN

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