Charles Stanley – A Compass for Life’s Journey

 

Proverbs 3:1-6

If you’ve ever been lost in the woods, you know the concerns, confusion, and panic such a situation causes. Now think what a difference it would have made to know that a compass was in your pocket. Spiritually speaking, we have such a compass—God’s Word. But it does no good unless we let it guide us.

At times, we may fail to follow scriptural guidance because of …

Neglect. Sometimes we are so busy walking through life that we forget to look at God’s compass to make sure we’re headed in the right direction.

Pride. We often want to determine our own destiny. Many of us prefer to plan a course of action by relying on our strength, wisdom, and abilities.

Distractions. The Lord’s path of obedience isn’t always easy. In fact, sometimes it can be extremely challenging. Satan offers other trails that promise pleasure and ease if we will just ignore the compass and follow him. Although these routes seem pleasant at first, they lead to heartbreak and discouragement.

Difficulties. Whenever obstacles appear on the trail, our natural tendency is to try and find a way around them. But by ignoring God’s compass and stepping off the path, we’ll miss the blessings He wants to give us through the rough patches—benefits such as strong faith and godly character.

Why should we wander when the Lord’s compass is available? Let Scripture be your guide on life’s journey. God promises productive days and fruitful years if you follow His path. He’ll direct each step of your way, and His peace will sustain you, even during the difficult times.

Bible in One Year: Job 13-16

 

http://www.intouch.org/

Our Daily Bread — Open My Eyes

 

Read: John 14:23–31 | Bible in a Year: 2 Chronicles 21–22; John 14

The Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things. John 14:26

The first time I went to the gorgeous Chora Church in Istanbul, I was able to figure out some Bible stories from the Byzantine frescos and mosaics on the ceiling. But there was much I missed. The second time, however, I had a guide. He pointed to all the details I had previously missed, and suddenly everything made perfect sense! The first aisle, for instance, depicted the life of Jesus as recorded in the gospel of Luke.

Sometimes when we read the Bible we understand the basic stories, but what about the connections—those details that weave Scripture into the one perfect story? We have Bible commentaries and study tools, yes, but we also need a guide—someone to open our eyes and help us see the wonders of God’s written revelation. Our guide is the Holy Spirit who teaches us “all things” (John 14:26). Paul wrote that He explains “spiritual realities with Spirit-taught words” (1 Corinthians 2:13).

How wonderful to have the Author of the Book to show us the wonders of it! God has not only given us His written Word and His revelation but He also helps us to understand it and learn from it. So let us pray with the psalmist, saying, “Open my eyes that I may see wonderful things in your law” (Psalm 119:18).

Dear Lord, as I read Your Word, open my eyes that I may discover the wonders of Your revelation.

Study more at basics.christianuniversity.org/courses/SF105.

We need God in order to understand Scripture.

By Keila Ochoa

INSIGHT

Did you do connect-the-dot puzzles as a child?

When Jesus spoke in John 14:23–31 about giving His Spirit to show His disciples all they needed to know, they couldn’t yet see the picture. What He said about love, obedience, and the Spirit who would help them put it all together were still just words.

Imagine what it was like to be one of Jesus’s disciples for whom what He was saying was such a mystery and a puzzle on that Passover night. Then the Spirit came and began to reveal truth. Think about how the Spirit is now, through the Scriptures, connecting the dots for you.

Mart DeHaan

 

 

http://www.odb.org

Ravi Zacharias Ministry – Unsolved Mystery

Long before Horatio Caine or Gil Grissom made crime scene investigating a primetime enterprise, the Bloodhound Gang was “there on the double” “wherever there’s trouble,” a doughty group of junior detectives who used science to solve crimes. Written by Newbery Medal-winning children’s author Sid Fleischman, the Bloodhound Gang was a beloved segment on the PBS television program 3-2-1 Contact, and my first encounter with the almost unbearable suspension, “To be continued.” Thankfully, with the help of their knowledge of science, no mystery remained unsolved for long.

What I did not realize at the time, or through years of absorbing Unsolved Mysteries, CSI, and my own scientific pursuits, was the hold that simple word “solve” would have on my understanding of mystery. For the Bloodhound Gang, as much as for the philosophers of science who have given rise to the notion, science is the invasion and defeat of mystery. That is to say, for many scientists (though certainly not for all historically), mysteries are there to be solved and put finally beyond us.

One can see how such a notion fuels the perception that science and faith are at odds with one another; science being the conquest of mystery and faith the act of making room for it. For Steven Pinker, Harvard Professor and cognitive scientist, certain aspects of religious belief can be thought of as “desperate measure[s] that people resort to when the stakes are high and they’ve exhausted the usual techniques for the causation of success.”(1) In other words, religion, like the story of the stork for parents not ready for their kids to know where babies come from, is simply a desperate attempt to explain away mystery, even if only by making space for it. And faith is thus seen as the grossly inferior CSI agent.

Continue reading Ravi Zacharias Ministry – Unsolved Mystery

Joyce Meyer – It Doesn’t Take Much

 

…you shall love your neighbor (acquaintance, associate, companion) as yourself…. — Leviticus 19:18

One of the many reasons I love God’s Word is that it is full of little things we can do to bless, encourage, and strengthen one another—things that don’t take much time or cost much money. Here are some of the acts of kindness the Bible says we can and should do for one another:

  • Watch over one another
  • Pray for one another
  • Look for kindnesses we can express to others
  • Be friendly and hospitable
  • Be patient with one another
  • Bear with others’ faults and weaknesses
  • Give others the benefit of the doubt
  • Encourage one another
  • Be loyal to one another
  • Be happy for people when they are blessed
  • Keep people’s secrets and don’t tell their faults
  • Believe the best of one another

The ideas listed here are relatively simple things we all can do if we are willing. We don’t have to make special plans for most of them, but can do them throughout the day as we have opportunities.

Prayer Starter: Father, help me to truly love other people today—with my thoughts, attitudes and actions. allow others to see Your love and kindness through me. In Jesus’ name, amen.

 

 

http://www.joycemeyer.org

Campus Crusade for Christ; Bill Bright – Praise Brings Results

“And at the moment they began to sing and to praise, the Lord caused the armies of Ammon, Moab, and Mount Seir to begin fighting among themselves, and they destroyed each other!” (2 Chronicles 20:22).

The armies of Ammon, Moab and Mount Seir had declared war on King Jehoshaphat and the people of Judah. So Jehoshaphat called the people together and prayed, “Oh, our God. Won’t you stop them. We have no way to protect ourselves against this mighty army. We don’t know what to do but we are looking to You.”

Then the Lord instructed the people, “Don’t be afraid, don’t be paralyzed by this mighty army for the battle is not yours, but God’s! Tomorrow, go down and attack them!…But you will not need to fight. Take your places; stand quietly and see the incredible rescue operation God will perform for you” (2 Chronicles 20:15-17).

After consultation with the leaders of the people, Jehoshaphat determined that there should be a choir, clothed in sanctified garments and singing the song, “His Loving kindness Is Forever,” leading the march. As they walked along praising and thanking the Lord, He released His mighty power in their behalf.

One of the greatest lessons I have ever learned about the Christian life is the importance of praise and thanksgiving. The greater the problem, the more difficult the circumstances, the greater the crisis, the more important it is to praise God at all times, to worship Him for who He is; for His attributes of sovereignty, love, grace, power, wisdom and might; for the certainty that He will fight for us, that He will demonstrate His supernatural resources in our behalf.

As in the case of Jehoshaphat and the people of Judah when they began to praise God and He caused the three opposing armies to fight against each other and destroy one another, God will fight for us if we trust and obey Him. There is no better way to demonstrate faith and obedience than to praise Him and to thank Him, even when our world is crumbling around us and the enemy is threatening to destroy. God honors praise. Hebrews 13:15 reminds us, “With Jesus’ help, we will continually offer our sacrifice of praise to God by telling others of the glory of His name.”

Bible Reading:Psalm 136:1, 21-26

TODAY’S ACTION POINT: Today I will continue to praise God and give thanks to Him for who He is. When difficulties arise, I will praise Him all the more and thank Him for His faithfulness. I will depend upon the supernatural resources of God which enable me to live the supernatural life, regardless of the circumstances.

 

http://www.cru.org

Max Lucado – Showing Who God Is

 

Listen to Today’s Devotion

The Bible says that each person is given something to do that shows who God is! (1 Corinthians 12:7). When God gives an assignment, he also gives the skill. Look at your life. What do you consistently do well? What do you love to do? And what do others love for you to do?

So much for the excuse, I don’t have anything to offer. Enough of the self-deprecating, I can’t do anything. And enough of its arrogant opposite, “I have to do everything.” Imitate the Apostle Paul who said, “Our goal is to stay within the boundaries of God’s plan for us” (2 Corinthians 10:13). Extract your uniqueness. “Kindle afresh the gift of God which is in you!” (2 Timothy 1:6). And do so to make a big deal out of God!

Read more Cure for the Common Life

For more inspirational messages please visit Max Lucado.

http://www.maxlucado.com

Denison Forum – Teenager hospitalized after working out too much

We all want to make a mark in the world, to do something that will outlive us.

Prior to last night’s game between the Golden State Warriors and the Cleveland Cavaliers, Sports Illustrated opined that “LeBron James is good enough to steal the NBA Finals.” Then Stephen Curry set an NBA Finals record with nine three-point shots as the Warriors defeated James and the Cavaliers 122–103.

Mortality is a fact of life, on the basketball court and everywhere else.

A teenager in Houston was hospitalized last week with an unusual and potentially deadly disease. Rhabdomyolysis causes a breakdown of muscle tissue, releasing a protein into the blood that can damage the kidneys. The cause? He worked out in the gym too much.

Today’s Wall Street Journal reports that a volcanic eruption less than thirty miles from Guatemala’s capital killed at least twenty-five people yesterday. Meanwhile, eruptions of the Kilauea volcano in Hawaii have stranded nearly a dozen people in an area cut off by lava.

And this morning’s New York Times profiles two elite climbers who fell to their deaths while scaling El Capitan in Yosemite last Saturday. Tim Klein had reportedly climbed El Capitan more than one hundred times; Jason Wells had climbed it many times as well. The men were tethered together when they fell one thousand feet to their deaths.

Continue reading Denison Forum – Teenager hospitalized after working out too much