Charles Stanley – Praying in God’s Will

 

Colossians 1:10-14

Paul fervently desired that the body of Christ—individually and corporately—become spiritually mature. Knowing the Lord had planned for such growth to impact the world, the apostle asked that believers would know God’s will and then …

Live a godly life (Col. 1:10). Paul prayed for our character, conversation, and conduct to be consistent with the Lord’s. Christians are Jesus’ representatives, so our lives ought to be an extension of His—with eyes that look compassionately at others, hearts that offer forgiveness and love, and hands that are engaged in service. A believer’s character, while imperfect, should increasingly reflect Christ’s righteousness.

Make our life count (v. 10). In God’s eyes, not everything we do is fruitful—much of our activity stems from a desire to please self or others. All that truly matters is what’s done in obedience to our Father. Jesus spoke about the importance of bearing much fruit, which is possible only when we stay connected with Him (John 15:5).

Experience God’s power (Col. 1:11). Through the Holy Spirit’s presence, we have all we need for carrying out our Father’s will.

Remain committed and grateful (Col. 1:12). God answers according to His perfect timing. We must be steadfast in prayer and thankful for everything He’s done.

Whether we pray these verses for ourselves or for others, we can know that our petitions are in accordance with the Lord’s will. And 1 John 5:14-15 tells us praying in this way carries the wonderful assurance that God is going to respond affirmatively.

Bible in One Year: 2 Samuel 15-17

 

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Our Daily Bread — Leaving a Legacy

 

Read: Isaiah 49:14–16 | Bible in a Year: 1 Samuel 13–14; Luke 10:1–24

A scroll of remembrance was written in his presence concerning those who feared the Lord and honored his name. Malachi 3:16

Some years ago our sons and I spent a week on an abandoned backcountry ranch on the Salmon River, Idaho’s “River of No Return.”

One day, exploring the ranch, I came across an ancient grave with a wooden marker. Whatever inscription the marker may have borne had long since been weathered away. Someone lived and died—now was forgotten. The gravesite seemed tragic to me. After we got home I spent several hours reading about the history of the old ranch and that area, but could find no information about the person buried there.

May I be faithful to You today, Lord, as I spend my time loving others with Your love.

They say that the best among us is remembered for 100 years or so. The rest of us are soon forgotten. The memory of past generations, like our markers, soon fades away. Yet our legacy has been passed on through the family of God. How we’ve loved God and others in our lifetime lives on. Malachi 3:16–17 tells us, “a book of remembrance was written before Him for those who fear the Lord and who esteem His name. ‘They will be Mine,’ says the Lord of hosts, ‘on the day that I prepare My own possession’ ” (nasb).

Paul said of David that he “served God’s purpose in his own generation” and departed (Acts 13:36). Like him, may we love the Lord and serve Him in our generation and leave the remembering to Him. “They will be Mine,” says the Lord.

May I be faithful to You today, Lord, as I spend my time loving others with Your love. Help me to trust You with the legacy I’m leaving behind.

Living for the Lord leaves a lasting legacy.

By David H. Roper INSIGHT

Throughout Scripture, we gather a picture of how to leave behind a godly legacy. Psalm 78:4 reminds us to “tell the next generation the praiseworthy deeds of the Lord, his power, and the wonders he has done.” Deuteronomy 6:5–7 declares: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.”

When we wholeheartedly love the Lord and others, live an obedient life that is pleasing to Him, and tell our family and others about the many wonders God has done throughout history and in our lives, we leave behind a legacy that can impact the next generation and the next and the next.

What legacy will you leave?

Alyson Kieda

 

http://www.odb.org

Ravi Zacharias Ministry – Slain and Standing

When the reigning fifteenth century Japanese shogun Ashikaga Yoshimasa broke his favorite Chinese tea bowl, the distraught military dictator sent the antique pieces of pottery back to China to be repaired. The bowl was returned to him, repaired using a technique commonly practiced at the time. Metal staples fused the pieces together in a manner that assured the beloved bowl’s function, but the bowl was never the same. In Yoshimasa’s mind, the object was broken first by the fracture and then again by the mending. Disappointed, he called Japanese craftsmen to come up with another way.

What was born was the art of kintsugi, which expresses the Japanese aesthetic philosophy of wabi-sabi, embracing the flawed and imperfect, revealing beauty and strength in what has been broken. Kintsugi literally means golden connection or golden jointing. Broken pottery fragments are fused together using lacquer and gold. The end result is still repair in the deepest sense, but the breakage itself is not erased; in fact, it becomes all the more obvious. Rather than concealing the flaws, cracks are accentuated and highlighted. The repair remains the object of admiration, but the breakage is seen as a part of it, bestowing more value, emboldening strength, esteeming beauty.

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Joyce Meyer – Obey Quickly

Jesus then said to them, I assure you, most solemnly I tell you, Moses did not give you the Bread from heaven [what Moses gave you was not the Bread from heaven], but it is My Father Who gives you the true heavenly Bread. — John 6:32

Jesus said to ask God for daily bread (See Matthew 6:11). He also called Himself the “Bread of Life” (See John 6:35). Seek God’s direction in the morning to gather His daily words for you. You will feel well nourished all day long. Obey quickly if God tells you to do something.

Even if God gives you a difficult task, don’t put it off and dread it all day. Abraham rose early to offer Isaac on the altar; God blessed his obedience and provided an acceptable sacrifice in place of Isaac (See Genesis 22:1–14). David rose up early on the morning that he was to kill Goliath, and through him God delivered the Israelites from their enemies (See 1 Samuel 17:20–53). He will bless and deliver you too.

Prayer Starter: Father, I thank You that whatever You ask us to do, You also give us the grace to do it. Please help me to trust You more. Help me to choose Your will instead of my own…and step out in faith to obey You in every area of my life. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

 

http://www.joycemeyer.org

Campus Crusade for Christ; Bill Bright – Examples of His Love 

 

“Little children, let us stop just saying we love people; let us really love them, and show it by our actions” (1 John 3:18).

The story is told about two farmers. Every day, one of them would haul pails of water up the steep slope to his terraced field and irrigate his meager crop.

The second farmer tilled the terrace just below, and he would poke a hole in the dyke and let the other farmer’s water run down into his field.

The first farmer was upset. Being a Christian, he went to his pastor and asked for advice. The pastor told him to keep on watering as before and to say nothing. So, the farmer returned to his fields and the watering of his crop, but the farmer below him continued to drain off his water. Nothing had changed.

After a few days, the first farmer went to his pastor again. The pastor told him to go a step further – to water his neighbor’s crop! So the next day, the farmer brought water to his neighbor’s field and watered the crops. After that, he watered his own field.

This went on for three days, and not a word was exchanged between the two farmers. But after the third day, the second farmer came to the first farmer.

“How do I become a Christian?” he asked.

There is a saying, ‘Love your friends and hate your enemies.’ But I say: Love your enemies!…If you are friendly only to your friends, how are you different from anyone else? Even the heathens do that. But you are to be perfect, even as your father in heaven is perfect” (Matthew 5:43-48).

Bible Reading:I John 3:14-17

TODAY’S ACTION POINT:  I will make every effort to demonstrate the love of Christ by the way I act toward others.

 

http://www.cru.org

Max Lucado – A Time Claimed for God

 

Listen to Today’s Devotion

A friend described to me her daily ninety-minute commute. “Ninety minutes,” I commiserated. “Don’t feel sorry for me,” she smiled, “I use the trip to think about God.” She went on to describe how she fills the hour listening to entire books of the Bible. She recites prayers. By the time she reaches her place of employment, she’s ready for the day. She says, “I turn my commute into my chapel.”

Is there a block of time you can claim for God? Perhaps turning off the network news and opening your Bible. Set the alarm fifteen minutes earlier. Rather than watch TV as you fall asleep, listen to an audio version of the Bible or a Christian book. Jesus says, “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free” (John 8:31-32 ESV).

Read more Anxious for Nothing

For more inspirational messages please visit Max Lucado.

http://www.maxlucado.com

Denison Forum – Patrick Reed wins the Masters: How focus changes everything

It was nearly a Masters for the ages. Jordan Spieth began yesterday’s final round trailing by nine shots. No one in the history of the tournament has ever won from such a large deficit. Spieth actually tied for the lead late in the day, but Patrick Reed held on to win his first major title.

I have been privileged to attend the tournament several times over the years. Television cannot do justice to the difficulty of Augusta National—the narrow rolling fairways, the glass-like greens, the extraordinary precision required to navigate the course.

Patrick Reed survived the pressure yesterday. His victory showed that shutting out the massive crowds, the television cameras, and the burden of winning the most prestigious tournament in golf is essential to success. The Masters demands the best of its champions, as it should.

A troubling New York Times article

Meanwhile, police arrested six people yesterday who are suspected of planning to attack spectators at a half-marathon in Germany. The lead suspect reportedly wanted revenge for the death of Anis Amri, the terrorist who drove a truck into a Berlin Christmas market in December 2016, killing twelve people.

Continue reading Denison Forum – Patrick Reed wins the Masters: How focus changes everything