A Renewed Life

TODAY’S VERSE
Just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glorious power of the Father, now we also may live new lives.
Romans 6:4 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
A new life. What would that be like? A do-over. A get out of jail free card. What if you really could begin again? What would change? What would you do differently? It seems so impossible, but Christ came to give us a new life. Jesus Himself used the word “born again” when describing those who decide to follow Him. Paul talks about how he could make it through all his struggles because his inner self was renewed day by day. God knew us from the beginning of time and created us for His purposes, and though our life may seem like one mistake after another, one wrong turn followed by another, God can change everything. This same power that God used to raise Jesus from the dead is the power He wants to use in helping you begin to live a renewed life. Today, come to Him. Surrender and ask Him to help you start afresh. He will. He will hear your prayer and give you a new chance you have been looking for. His love for you is boundless. His promise is sure. He promises that He will not reject your plea if you come to Him with a broken and repentant heart.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I need a new start. I ask, dear Lord, that You use that same power that You used to raise Jesus from the dead to help me give a renewed life. I surrender to You and ask for Your help today. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Light Or Darkness?

TODAY’S VERSE
Your eye is a lamp that provides light for your body. When your eye is good, your whole body is filled with light. But when your eye is bad, your whole body is filled with darkness. And if the light you think you have is actually darkness, how deep that darkness is!
Matthew 6:22-23 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
I have studied psychology all my life, and I have never heard a more accurate statement than what Jesus said in this passage. How deceived we can become. We look at what we think is reality, and all the time, we are actually looking through filters. Anger, sadness, jealousy, fear, abandonment, hurt, and a hundred other emotions, attitudes, perceptions, and impressions skew our view of what is true. We think we see in the light, and all the time, it is darkness. And Jesus warned us, “If the light you think you have is actually darkness, how deep that darkness is!” That is why He gave us the Holy Spirit and His word. The Holy Spirit is our teacher and guide, showing us the way. The word of God is our filter in which to see the world. Together they keep us in the light. Today, come to God. Ask Him to help you see the truth of your own situation. Ask Him to be your guide so that you will know which way to go. May His light penetrate your darkness and set you free.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, how I need You. I need Your light to penetrate my darkness. Guide me, lead me, show me the way to go, I pray. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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His Love

TODAY’S VERSE
Does it mean he no longer loves us if we have trouble or calamity, or are persecuted, or hungry, or destitute, or in danger, or threatened with death?
Romans 8:35 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Paul asks one of the most heart-wrenching questions we can come to grips with. How many times has there been a tragedy in our life, and we are tempted to say, “Where is God?” Paul addresses this feeling. He asks if we have trouble or calamity, or are persecuted, or hungry, or destitute, or in danger, or threatened with death, does it mean God no longer loves us? What I love is his answer. He writes, “No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us.” However, he doesn’t stop there; Paul adds, “Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Nothing can separate God’s love from us, and yet sad to say, we can live our lives day after day and are never be conscious of it. Paul, who knew persecution, prison, torture, beatings, poverty, and homelessness, was able to write of the unfailing love of God that never left him. And yet most of us live in comfort, freedom, and good health, and we hardly find the time to acknowledge this wonderful gift of God. Today, let us embrace His love. Let’s celebrate His faithfulness to us and the fact that nothing, not even ourselves, can separate us from God’s love.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, thank You for Your unfailing love. Thank You that nothing, not even my apathy, can separate me from Your love. Today, I pause and thank You for calling me back, for reminding me again, that it is Your love that makes all the difference in the world. Praise You, dear Father, for Your love to me.
AMEN

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The Holy Spirt

TODAY’S VERSE
And the Holy Spirit helps us in our weakness. For example, we don’t know what God wants us to pray for. But the Holy Spirit prays for us with groanings that cannot be expressed in words. – For the Spirit pleads for us believers in harmony with God’s own will.
Romans 8:26-27 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Today’s passage puts a whole new meaning to the phrase, “You are never alone.” It goes way beyond telling someone, “God loves you.” It goes straight to your deepest needs. Paul paints a picture of the Holy Spirit coming before God in deep, deep concern, groaning as He intercedes for you, pleading with God Almighty to move in your life according to His will. Stop for a minute. Try to grasp what is going on. Close your eyes and see if you can picture it. The Holy Spirit is praying, pleading, groaning on your behalf. What love, what empathy, what compassion. What peace, what comfort, what support. And it changes everything. You are not alone. You don’t have to live as if everything depends on you. You can put all your trust in Him. Today, might you have a deep sense of gratitude and love for the presence of the Holy Spirit in you. Might you be moved with profound reverence and awe for our Heavenly Father who loves you in such an amazing way.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Oh Holy Spirit of God, how I marvel at Your intercession for me. How humbled I am that You would act with such love for me. How deeply moved I am that You would pray and plead on my behalf. Thank You so much for all You do and are.
AMEN

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He Will Never Forsake you

TODAY’S VERSE

I will never leave you nor forsake you.
Hebrews 13:5 (KJV)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
There are many promises in the Bible, but I think the one that is most precious to me is when God promises that He will never leave me or forsake me. It boggles my mind to believe that God promises such a thing to me. I know that there are universes and solar systems. I know that there are billions of people. And with each person, there are multitudes of situations that need God’s attention. And yet, He is God. In His sovereign magnificence, He has declared that He will not leave me or forsake me. Never. What comfort. What hope. What joy it brings to my heart. No wonder this same author of Hebrews could conclude, “We can say with confidence, ‘The LORD is my helper, so I will have no fear.’” Today, bring whatever struggles you have, whatever fears, whatever guilt, whatever sorrow, and lay it before God. Then hear Him say, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, thank You for Your wonderful promise that You will never leave me, nor will You forsake me. Thank You for Your faithful love. Thank You for Your grace. Fill my heart with peace and joy, I pray. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Heal My Inner Self

TODAY’S VERSE
Even if my father and mother abandon me, the LORD will hold me close.
Psalms 27:10 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
We live in a fallen world, and many of us suffer from an early childhood that has left us emotionally immature. It seems that we are constantly using negative ways to regulate our emotions. But we don’t have to be victims of our past. In His wisdom and grace, God has provided us with the ability to overcome childhood issues through new adult relationships with Him. Today, we don’t need to suffer from a painful past. We have the presence of the Holy Spirit, the forgiveness of Christ, and the love of God the Father. As we spend time with God and develop a deep relationship, we will find ourselves creating a new and liberating bond with God. This healing relationship with the Father will renew our minds and heal the painful memories and consequent beliefs that lead us to despair. Today, come to God. Let Him hold you. Allow His love to do a deep work in you.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, thank You for Your loving commitment to me. Thank You that You have not abandoned me but love me and hold me close to Your heart. Do a deep work in me. Heal me deep in my inner self and give me the joy and peace that only You can provide.
AMEN

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The One Thing

TODAY’S VERSE
The one thing I ask of the LORD—the thing I seek most—is to live in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, delighting in the LORD’s perfections and meditating in his Temple.
Psalms 27:4 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
What is your “one thing”? We all have one. It may not seem like it, but we do. But, you say, “I haven’t chosen anything yet.” Sure you have. By not choosing, you chose mediocrity. You are trading your precious life for a half-hearted attempt at living when all the while, God is waiting to give you life, life at its fullness. David knew God was the “one thing,” the meaning of life, the ultimate purpose, what Jesus called “the pearl of great price” that when a man found it, “he went and sold all that he had, and bought it.” For David, that pearl was knowing God. He wanted to live in His presence, delight in Him, and spend time meditating on all that He is. And God offers you the same thing. It is within your grasp. Today, choose the “one thing.” Choose to truly know God in all His wisdom, grace, and love.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, I come today to ask for the “one thing.” I desire, Lord, to know You. I open my heart and ask You to fill it. Help me delight in Your presence. Help me meditate on all You are. I seek You, Lord, with all my heart. Be my “one thing,” I pray. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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Overflow With Joy

TODAY’S VERSE
I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow! This is my commandment: Love each other in the same way I have loved you.
John 15:11-12 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
We were meant for joy. Instead, we settle for comfort. We look everywhere for it. It is at the root of addictions, greed, and many of our emotional issues. We look for comfort because we do not have joy. True, we need to be comforted, but comfort is just the beginning. After comfort, God wants us to return to joy from our negative emotions. Jesus said, “I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow!” Then Jesus says, “Love each other.” Why? Because love gives us joy, and remaining in this love returns us to joy even after negative emotions. Today, remember, our joy comes through loving relationships, both with God and those He brings into our life.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, fill me with Your joy. The joy that comes through the deep and loving relationships I can have with You and those that You bring into my life. Help my joy overflow. In Jesus’ name.
AMEN

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He Knows My Name

TODAY’S VERSE
I would not forget you! See, I have written your name on the palms of my hands.
Isaiah 49:15-16 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
I am deeply moved every time I sing the worship song, “He Knows My Name.” It makes me think of today’s verse. The Israelites doubted the love of God, so Isaiah reminded them that even if a mother forgets her child, God will never forget them. Isaiah writes that our Lord has written our name on the palms of His hands. God knows my name? I am overwhelmed by the thought. How personal, how loving, how intimate. And yet I can’t help but wonder, “What else does God know about me?” He knows my situation. He knows my struggles. He knows my limitations. My fear and anxiety are no surprise to Him. He knows my anger and frustrations. He knows my weaknesses. He knows and loves me, but do I know Him? Do I? Do I know His name? Do I know Him as the God Most High, the God who sees, the all-sufficient One, the provider, and the Lord who heals? Do I know Him as my banner and my peace? Do I know Him as my creator, shepherd, and my righteousness? Today, take joy in knowing that the God above all other names knows yours.

TODAY’S PRAYER
Father, thank You for knowing and loving me. Thank You for knowing my name and caring so deeply for me. Help me know and love You more.
AMEN

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Remain In Him

TODAY’S VERSE
Yes, I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing.
John 15:5 (NLT)

TODAY’S THOUGHT
Christianity is a way of life. It is so much more than church on Sunday and a few “quiet times.” God cares about our every moment. Our emotions, our thoughts, our actions. In his book, “Walking With God,” John Eldredge writes that our heart is central to the Christian life and that we are invited into a conversational intimacy with God. This is what Jesus was talking about. We remain in Him with our heart, not just our head. He remains in us as we are involved with Him in intimate conversation. It is a deep relationship, one that demands that we focus on Him. He is there. And as we remain in Him and He remains in us, we will produce the spiritual fruit we were born to produce. Today remember what Jesus said, “Apart from me, you can do nothing.”

TODAY’S PRAYER
Jesus, I realize that apart from You, I can do nothing. Forgive me for cutting myself off from the deep intimacy that You desire. Revive my heart, I pray. Bring life back to my soul and help me remain in You. In Your matchless name, I pray.
AMEN

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Scriptural Inspiration For Your Daily Journey