Devotionals

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Loving God

Loving God

Today's Message

{ Day 18 }

Can you fathom the mysteries of God? Can you probe the limits of the Almighty? They are higher than the heavens—what can you do? They are deeper than the depths of the grave—what can you know? Their measure is longer than the earth and wider than the sea. —Job 11:7-9

Our world is affected tragically every day by people who possess little or no sense of God's transcendence. Much of creation does not know—or care—that its Creator is unequaled, unrivaled, and supreme. Transcendence when in reference to God means that He exists not only in but also beyond our realm of reality. In other words, He's not like us—far from it. God is exalted far above His created universe, so far that even the brightest human minds cannot begin to fathom it.

{ PRAYER STARTER }

Father, today I just want to stop to recite again everything that I know You are and everything that I know You are doing in my life. I'll never be able to fully understand who You are, Father, but I want to know more and more about You every day of my life.

My inner man is continually in the process of being
renewed into a fuller, more complete knowledge
of God and His glorious personality.

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Daily Breakthroughs

Daily Breakthroughs

Today's Message

The Indelible Sign

For we are the circumcision, which worship God in the spirit, and rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh. —Philippians 3:3

Covenant partners symbolized their pledge by cutting into their flesh, thus creating a scar. When God entered into covenant with Abraham, he instituted a different kind of symbol.

Abraham was told to circumcise every male in his household. Throughout the history of Israel, circumcision was the indelible sign of a covenant relationship with God.

The sign of the new covenant that Jesus instituted is the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. We are recognized by the sign and seal of His Spirit within us (Acts 2:38). We are sealed with the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 1:13).

Determine to display all the fruit of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, and temperance (Galatians 5:22-23). The fruit of the Spirit is the very nature of Christ in you—the hope of glory (Colossians 1:27).

Boldly prepare to share the gospel with those whom the Holy Spirit gives you the opportunity to share. As a Spirit-filled believer, allow your life to point to the Greater One. He must increase while you decrease (John 3:30).

Increase in my life, O Lord. Be Thou my all in all.
Shine through me with Thy fire. Cleanse me
with Thy blood. Make of my life a mirror
reflecting Thy glory. Amen.

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By Love Transformed

By Love Transformed

Today's Message

The Key to Faith

How can you believe if you accept praise from one another, yet make no effort to obtain the praise that comes from the only God? —John 5:44

This verse is a warning and an encouragement to you and me. The warning: if you and I do not make an attempt to receive the praise that comes from God rather than the praise of people, we too will find it impossible to exercise genuine faith. The encouragement: we are not required to have obtained the honor and praise of God, but only to make an effort to obtain it. God's commands are not burdensome (1 John 5:3).

He is not demanding that we perfectly repudiate the praise of people and absolutely receive His praise; He is only asking us to make an effort to obtain His praise. Nothing can be more reasonable than that.

What is so scary about this implication is that you and I could continue to miss what God may be up to in His church generally and in our lives in particular. If I choose the praise of people over God's approval, I will be a victim of unbelief. I will render myself incapable of believing God, as He wants me to. I will likewise miss whatever God has chosen to do at the moment. Jonathan Edwards taught us that the task of every generation is to discover in which direction the Sovereign Redeemer is moving, then move in that direction. But if I am found being enamoured with the praise of people during the time God is at work in my day or in my area, I will miss seeing His glory—even if it is right in front of me. That is what happened to the ancient Jews in Israel, and it can happen to us today. I can think of nothing worse than that.

This verse therefore contains an immense encouragement, namely, if I but seek—or make an effort to obtain—His honor, I will be able to believe and see what He is up to.

Excerpted from Pure Joy (Charisma House, 2006).


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Around the Word in 365 Days

Around the Word in 365 Days

Today's Message

Casting Our Cares Upon Jesus

Psalm 62:1-12 David gives excellent advice in the psalm. He exhorts us to trust in the Lord at all times and to pour out our concerns and cares before Him. I learned how much God does love for us to cast our cares upon Him several years ago.

My usual time with the Lord is in the early morning. For some reason I missed my usual time and did not have this special time with the Lord until it was 2 p.m. As I went to prayer, the Lord spoke the following to my heart: "Linda, I love you because you cast every care upon Me. Thank you."

At that moment, I saw with my spiritual eyes my cares wrapped as gift-wrapped packages. They were ascending to the throne room, and Jesus was there to catch each package. He held the gifts of my cares to His bosom and danced around heaven rejoicing because now He could perfect all those things that concerned me. One of the cares I cast upon the Lord was my concern for my boys to marry wonderful Christian girls who were also called to be laborers in God's vineyard. Five minutes after I released this to the Lord, I received a telephone call from one of my "daughters in the Lord." I had grown weary of waiting for daughters-in-law, so I adopted and mentored several younger women I knew. Rebecca, one of these special daughters, called and said, "Linda, I believe I have a message for you from the Lord. I really wrestled with the Lord about calling you since I knew I would be seeing you this afternoon at 4 at our prayer time. But when I was in a Christian bookstore I saw a sign that I knew was a message for you. The sign said, 'Daughters-in-law are worth waiting for.'" The timing of this call was too perfect to be a coincidence. I believe God dropped a post card from heaven through Rebecca to me telling me to be patient. The daughters-in-law were on the way. Today I have three of the most beautiful daughters-in-law, and they all adore God and their husbands. They all are servants in God's vineyard.

Is there a burden or care this morning that you want to cast upon the Lord? He is waiting expectantly to receive it, and He will perfect all those things that are a concern to you.

Lord, forgive me for not pouring out my heart to You. Help me to cast every care upon You, because I know You do care for me. Amen.

READ: Numbers 28:15-29:40; Luke 3:3-38; Psalm 62:1-12; Proverbs 11:18-19

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Live Extraordinary

Live Extraordinary

Today's Message

Unlimited Access to God

"For I know the plans I have for you," says the Lord. "They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope" (Jeremiah 29:11, NLT).

God has a plan for your life! And that plan is good—not average, mediocre, or boring. It was established in the mind of God before you were ever born, before the creation of the earth itself. This truth is made incredibly clear in Psalm 139. Look at what David writes:

"O Lord, you have searched me and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O Lord.

My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be." (vs 1-4, 15-16 NIV)

God is amazing! He knows every thought before you think it, every word before you speak it. He knows when you lie down and when you get up, and He is totally aware of every day of your life before it takes place. With a heavenly Father like this, why go anywhere else for wisdom and direction for your life?

How can you tap into the infinite wisdom of the One who created the heavens and the earth? Through a close, ongoing relationship with Him. He loves you with an everlasting love and wants to be a part of every area of your life. As you read His Word and spend time with Him in prayer, He will reveal to you His general will and His specific will for your life.

Marked by boldness and passion, John Bevere delivers uncompromising truth through his award-winning curriculum and best-selling books now available in over sixty languages. His newest book is Extraordinary: The Life You’re Meant to Live. More information is available at www.ExtraordinaryOnline.org.

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