Charles Stanley – Can You Trust Your Conscience?

 

1 Timothy 1:18-19

“Let your conscience be your guide” is a well-known expression, but one that isn’t necessarily good advice. That’s because your moral compass is only as reliable as the principles you’ve learned. It will be a dependable safeguard through your life if you store up biblical instruction. But using false ideologies from popular culture to program your conscience will set you up for moral failure.

Our heavenly Father has given each person a conscience as a gift intended to be a tool of the Holy Spirit—our one true Guide. As such, it is designed to protect you from going astray. Your conscience is most trustworthy when the following seven statements are true of you:

  • Jesus Christ is your Savior and Lord.
  • The Bible is the basis for your conduct.
  • You have a strong desire to obey God.
  • You make decisions prayerfully.
  • Your conscience sounds the alarm when you consider a wrong direction.
  • You feel guilty when you disobey.
  • You feel compelled to repent of your transgression.

A trustworthy conscience reacts immediately to disobedience. There is no making excuses over whether or not something may have been wrong.

To develop a reliable inner compass, read and apply Scripture so God’s principles will override any false or corrupted programming. Then, with the Holy Spirit’s guidance, your conscience will alert and protect you. Ask God to make it an effective tool for leading you.

Bible in One Year: Mark 6-7

 

http://www.intouch.org/

Our Daily Bread — Trust Him First

 

Read: Isaiah 46:3–13 | Bible in a Year: Isaiah 45–46; 1 Thessalonians 3

Praise the Lord; praise God our savior! For each day he carries us in his arms. Psalm 68:19 nlt

“Don’t let go, Dad!”

“I won’t. I’ve got you. I promise.”

I was a little boy terrified of the water, but my dad wanted me to learn to swim. He would purposefully take me away from the side of the pool into a depth that was over my head, where he was my only support. Then he would teach me to relax and float.

It wasn’t just a swimming lesson; it was a lesson in trust. I knew my father loved me and would never let me be harmed intentionally, but I was also afraid. I would cling tightly to his neck until he reassured me all would be well. Eventually his patience and kindness won out, and I began to swim. But I had to trust him first.

When I feel “over my head” in a difficulty, I sometimes think back on those moments. They help me call to mind the Lord’s reassurance to His people: “Even to your old age . . . I am he who will sustain you. I have made you and I will carry you” (Isaiah 46:4).

We may not always be able to feel God’s arms beneath us, but the Lord has promised that He will never leave us (Hebrews 13:5). As we rest in His care and promises, He helps us learn to trust in His faithfulness. He lifts us above our worries to discover new peace in Him.

Abba, Father, I praise You for carrying me through life. Please give me faith to trust that You are always with me.

God carries us to new places of grace as we trust in Him.

By James Banks

INSIGHT

For further reading on trust in God during difficult times, see the free booklet Anchors in the Storm at discoveryseries.org/hp073.

 

 

http://www.odb.org

Ravi Zacharias Ministry – Acquainted With Grief

“Please—Mr. Lion—Aslan, Sir?” said Digory working up the courage to ask.  “Could you—may I—please, will you give me some magic fruit of this country to make my mother well?”

A child in one of the Narnia books, Digory, at this point in the story, had brought about much disaster for Aslan and his freshly created Narnia.  But he had to ask.  In fact, he thought for a second that he might attempt to make a deal with Aslan.  But quickly Digory realized the Lion was not the sort of person with which one could try to make bargains.

C.S. Lewis then recounts, “Up till then the child had been looking at the lion’s great front feet and the huge claws on them.  Now in his despair he looked up at his face.  And what he saw surprised him as much as anything in his whole life.  For the tawny face was bent down near his own and wonder of wonders great shining tears stood in the lion’s eyes.  They were such big, bright tears compared with Digory’s own that for a moment he felt as if the lion must really be sorrier about his mother than he was himself.”(1)

Charles Dickens often spoke of his characters as beloved and “real existences.”  I have often wondered if the “safe but never tame” Lion ministered to C.S. Lewis half as much as this Christ figure has comforted others.  Lewis was a boy about the age of Digory when his mother lay dying of cancer and he was helpless to save her.

“My son, my son,” said Aslan.  “I know.  Grief is great.  Only you and I in this land know that yet.  Let us be good to one another…”

The tremendous figure that fills the gospels towers above all attempts made to describe him.  Yet had you or I been in charge of writing the story of God becoming human, I doubt it would have been Christ either of us described: “He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering.  Like one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not,” reads the description of Isaiah.  He was not the stoic, man of nerves we might have imagined.  Nor was he the ever-at-peace teacher we often describe.  He was, among other things, a man of sorrows.

There is, for me, immense comfort in a Christ who was not always smiling.  As I picture his face set as flint toward Jerusalem, my fear is unfastened by his fortitude. As I imagine the urgency in his voice as he defended a guilty woman amidst a crowd holding rocks, my shame is freed by his mercy. And as I picture him weeping at the grave of Lazarus, crying out at injustice, sweating blood in the garden of Gethsemane, my tears are given depth by his own cries. We do not grieve alone.

Continue reading Ravi Zacharias Ministry – Acquainted With Grief

Joyce Meyer – God Blesses Obedience

 

Now therefore, if you will indeed obey my voice and keep my covenant, you shall be my treasured possession among all peoples, for all the earth is mine. — Exodus 19:5

Adapted from the resource Closer to God Each Day Devotional – by Joyce Meyer

God’s grace and power are available for us to use. God enables us or gives us an anointing of the Holy Spirit to do what He tells us to do.

Sometimes after He has prompted us to go another direction, we still keep pressing on with our original plan. If we are doing something He has not approved, He is under no obligation to give us the energy to do it. We are functioning in our own strength rather than under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Then we get so frustrated, stressed, or burned out, we lose our self-control, simply by ignoring the promptings of the Spirit.

Many people are stressed and burned out from going their own way instead of God’s way. They end up in stressful situations when they go a different direction from the one God prompted. Then they burn out in the midst of the disobedience and end up struggling to finish what they started outside of God’s direction, all the while begging God to bless them.

Thankfully, God is merciful, and He helps us in the midst of our mistakes. But He is not going to give us strength and energy to disobey Him. We can avoid many stressful situations simply by obeying the Holy Spirit’s promptings at all times.

Prayer Starter: Father, I know Your plan is always best for my life. Please help me today and every day to obey the promptings of Your Holy Spirit in every area. In Jesus’ Name, Amen

 

http://www.joycemeyer.org

Campus Crusade for Christ; Bill Bright – Still Present With You

 

“In just a little while I will be gone from the world, but I will still be present with you. For I will live again – and you will too” (John 14:19).

In this one verse the whole gospel story is expressed, for Jesus is speaking on the day before His death, foretelling just what will happen then and thereafter.

And what He has to say should bring renewed joy and comfort and peace to our hearts in the midst of a chaotic world that perhaps includes an element of chaos even in the home or at the office or in the classroom.

Yes, He was gone from the world to assume His rightful position at the right hand of His heavenly Father – after His death and resurrection. Now He is present with us in the person of His indwelling Holy Spirit, who lives within every believer. And to the extent we give Him control of our hearts and lives, He empowers and enables us to live a supernatural, abundant life.

He prophesies His resurrection – “I will live again” – the joyous truth of which makes possible His final promise to His disciples, “You will live too.”

Jesus is saying, in effect that the life of the Christian depends on that of Christ. They are united, and if they were separated, the Christian could not enjoy spiritual life here nor eternal joy hereafter. But He lives! And because He lives, we too shall live – forever, with Him throughout the endless ages of eternity!

Bible Reading:Romans 5:6-11

TODAY’S ACTION POINT: Because Jesus died, arose and now lives at God’s right hand while at the same time living in me, I can live the abundant, supernatural life today, and forever!

 

http://www.cru.org

Max Lucado – The Riches of His Grace

 

Listen to Today’s Devotion

I had planned to nap during my trip.  But the fellow next to me had other ideas! Knowing I couldn’t sleep, I opened my Bible.

“What ya’ studying there, buddy?”  I told him, but he never heard.

“The church is lost,” he declared.  “Hellbound and heartsick.  Christians are asleep.  They don’t pray.  They don’t  love. They don’t care.”  And with that he began listing all the woes and weaknesses of the church.

I shouldn’t have let it bug me, but it did.  God’s faithfulness has never depended on the faithfulness of his children.  He is faithful even when we are not.  When we lack courage, he doesn’t.

I’ll probably never see that proclaimer of pessimism again, but if you do, will you give him a message for me?  God’s blessings are dispensed according to the riches of his grace, not according to the depth of our faith.  That’s what makes God…God! And that is what makes the church strong.

Read more A Gentle Thunder

For more inspirational messages please visit Max Lucado.

http://www.maxlucado.com

Denison Forum – Meghan Markle, Prince Harry expecting first child

Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, is expecting her first child with Prince Harry, according to an announcement by Kensington Palace this morning. The palace said the baby is expected in the spring of 2019.

The news was announced as the couple began a tour of Australia, their first official tour since their marriage. Their baby will be seventh in line to the throne.

Why is a royal baby so special?

UNICEF estimates that 353,000 babies are born each day around the world. What makes a royal baby so special?

Prince George was born on July 22, 2013. The next evening, he was presented to “the biggest media circus in royal history.” Hundreds of TV crews and reporters lined up for almost a month outside the hospital where his mother gave birth.

When Princess Charlotte was carried out of the hospital, the receiving blanket in which she was wrapped sold out within minutes. Its brand monitored 100,000 people from 183 countries visiting their website in less than twenty-four hours. When Prince George greeted President Obama at Kensington Palace in 2016, the clothes he was wearing sold out in minutes as well.

Continue reading Denison Forum – Meghan Markle, Prince Harry expecting first child