Today's Good News

January 2005

1/01   Ephesians 1:2
May grace and peace be yours, sent to you from God our Father and Jesus Christ our Lord.

I am so grateful for God’s grace.  He is always looking for my best good.  Life can get very chaotic and out of control and in the midst of the turmoil I can sense God’s grace coming to me.  What I need every day is the presence of the Living Lord and His grace which sustains me.


1/02   Ephesians 2:1-2
Once you were dead, doomed forever because of your many sins.  You used to live just like the rest of the world, full of sin, obeying Satan, the mighty prince of the power of the air. He is the spirit at work in the hearts of those who refuse to obey God.

As I survey the cross of Christ I realize the wonderful forgiveness of God that has ushered me into His presence.  Life often times passes so quickly it begins to seem ordinary.  In Jesus we are no longer on our own and doomed to death.  We are alive in Christ and living in the very presence of Jesus. We know this because we have become obedient to the Lord and are seeking to become more like Jesus.


1/03   Ephesians 2:4-5
But God is so rich in mercy, and he loved us so very much, that even while we were dead because of our sins, he gave us life when he raised Christ from the dead. (It is only by God’s special favor that you have been saved!)

God has given us life in Jesus Christ.  We belong to the Lord Jesus.  No more am I on my own, alone and at the mercy of the world, I am a child of God.  The Lord has gifted me with this new life.  I did not earn it.  The Father was looking for me when He resurrected Jesus from the cross.  Praise the Lord Jesus is alive and has saved me.


1/04   Ephesians 2:8-9
God saved you by his special favor when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God.  Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it.

I am in debt to the Lord.  He came looking for me when I as blind and could not see.  Everything I did and thought was the foolishness of the world and yet the Lord loved me and offered me life.  I chose Jesus because He had chosen me.


1/05   Ephesians 3:12
Because of Christ and our faith in him, we can now come fearlessly into God’s presence, assured of his glad welcome.

Life is messy.  Things happen that surprise me.  Sometimes my response when I am under pressure is disappointing.  My performance because of health or a multitude of other reasons may even embarrass me.  One thing I know, I can always go to Jesus.  He will hear me out and guide me to where I should be.  As I read His Word I find myself being helped into the very presence of the Father.  The Lord loves me and is able to deal with my life.


1/06   Ephesians 3:14
When I think of the wisdom and scope of God’s plan, I fall to my knees and pray to the Father, the Creator of everything in heaven and on earth.

The Lord is good and able to equip me to face the realities of my life.  If today is a tough day, the Lord will equip me to be tougher.  If tomorrow I fail, the Lord will carry me through my failure.  What a wonderful Father I have.  I can live my life knowing that whatever I must do the Father will enable me to do it.  Nothing is too hard for the Lord.


1/07   Ephesians 3:17
And I pray that Christ will be more and more at home in your hearts as you trust in him. May your roots go down deep into the soil of God’s marvelous love.

God’s actions towards me are out of His love.  The Father will do what is necessary to equip, guide and enable me to accomplish His purpose in my life.  He will make my life a life of possibility and not a life of dead ends.  His plan for me is a good plan and exactly fits my life.  The Lord is good and He loves me.


1/08   Ephesians 3:18|
And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love really is.

I know God’s love out of the reality of my life.  He has pulled me out of the fire of sin, foolishness and failure.  He is equipping me to face the challenges of my life today.  The Lord is never late and is always available for me.  I have never gotten a busy signal when I approached Jesus.


1/09   Ephesians 3:19
May you experience the love of Christ, though it is so great you will never fully understand it. Then you will be filled with the fullness of life and power that comes from God.

My life is valuable.  God has a plan for me.  As I work out His plan for me each day I am overwhelmed by the magnitude of His love and the consistency of His guidance.  I cannot explain it I can only proclaim it.  The Lord is good and He loves me.


1/10   Ephesians 3:20
Now glory be to God! By his mighty power at work within us, he is able to accomplish infinitely more than we would ever dare to ask or hope.

I have spent a great deal of my life in laboring to accomplish the things I wanted.  Then one day I realized that what I needed to do was find out what Jesus wanted me to accomplish.  When I walk with Jesus and follow His plan, the world is a different place.  I discover the joy of knowing that the Lord will do what He says.  My anxiety disappears.  Trust equips me for the abundant life that Jesus talks about.  My life is refocused.  I grow in my relationship with the Father.


1/11   Ephesians 4:1
Therefore I, a prisoner for serving the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of your calling, for you have been called by God.

I am called of God to lead a normal Christian life.  That means that first and foremost each day begins with Jesus.  My responsibility is to stay attuned to what Jesus wants.  I find that when all of my heart, mind and body is focused on Him life is joyous.


1/12   Ephesians 4:16
Under his direction, the whole body is fitted together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love.

My life should evidence the life of Jesus.  When I am Christ controlled I am growing.  When I am in control I am always in trouble.  Jesus knows the future and He knows exactly what I need.  I strain and anguish trying to anticipate the future.  Jesus already knows the future and competently guides me to meet the future equipped and able to serve.


1/13   Ephesians 1:6
His unchanging plan has always been to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. And this gave him great pleasure.

The Lord loves mankind.  He cares about me and my life.  He has demonstrated His love in Jesus and is even this very moment giving His love to me.  God’s wondrous love is something that cannot be explained.  His love is something for me to accept and I have.


1/14   Ephesians 1:7
He is so rich in kindness that he purchased our freedom through the blood of his Son, and our sins are forgiven.

Jesus forgave me.  Before I was born, before I first sinned Christ had provided a solution to my sin problem.  The Lord provides the forgiveness that exactly fits me.


1/15   Ephesians 1:8
He has showered his kindness on us, along with all wisdom and understanding.

The solution to real life issues is found in Jesus.  He will equip me to face my life.  He will guide me through the heartache and pain of growth and comfort me through my failures.  Real wisdom begins with Jesus and is available for me to use to build an abundant life.


1/16   Ephesians 1:9
God’s secret plan has now been revealed to us; it is a plan centered on Christ, designed long ago according to his good pleasure.

God’s plan for man’s problem is Christ.  He provides forgiveness and access to the Father.  He lives in me.  He creates life in me in every situation.  Jesus will never leave me.  Christ will escort me from this life into the next where I will inherit a life like His.


1/17   Ephesians 1:10-11
And this is his plan: At the right time he will bring everything together under the authority of Christ – everything in heaven and on earth.  Furthermore, because of Christ, we have received an inheritance from God, for he chose us from the beginning, and all things happen just as he decided long ago.

Jesus is God’s everything.  He is the only way to the Father.  He is the solution to finding a cure for a wayward life.  Jesus equips me to grow into His likeness.  Everything I need for righteousness is found in Christ.


1/18   Colossians 1:3-4
We always pray for you, and we give thanks to God the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, for we have heard that you trust in Christ Jesus and that you love all of God’s people.

I have learned the importance of praying for brothers and sisters in Christ.  We are all part of the family of God.  Together we can help those we cannot see by remembering them before the Father.  I pray for you each day knowing that you are facing problems and issues that I will never have to face.  I pray for your family members, work and safety.  I pray that Jesus will be real in your life and that you will continue in the upward call of Christ.


1/19   Ephesians 1:2
May grace and peace be yours, sent to you from God our Father and Jesus Christ our Lord.

In Jesus I am complete and whole.  I am no longer tossed by every wind or doctrine nor am I overrun by sin.  I am equipped to deal with the issues of my life and in Christ am able to overcome.  God will give me exactly what I need if I will ask and obey.


1/20   Ephesians 1:3
How we praise God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms because we belong to Christ.

Jesus is worthy of all of our praise, honor and glory.  He is the image of the Father and provides us access to the Father. In Him is everything that you and I need to lead a Godly life.  Jesus is Lord.  Let us honor Him with the way we think, act and worship.  Jesus is God’s everything.


1/21   Philippians 1:6
And I am sure that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on that day when Christ Jesus comes back again.

God bought us with the life of Christ and rightfully owns us but the Lord lets us decide if we will accept His offer of salvation.  He saves us forever.  The activity of God in our lives will be exactly what we need to make it to the finish line of this life.  God is able.


1/22   Philippians 1:9-10
I pray that your love for each other will overflow more and more, and that you will keep on growing in your knowledge and understanding.  For I want you to understand what really matters, so that you may live pure and blameless lives until Christ returns.

People count with God.  When I am filled with His presence and living for Him I will love those around me.  The presence of God brings peace, joy and love for the brethren.  I am responsible for learning to love those I am with.


1/23   Philippians 1:21-22a
For to me, living is for Christ, and dying is even better.  Yet if I live, that means fruitful service for Christ.

I am to be about my master’s business.  The Lord has a plan for my life and that plan includes work.  My work in the Father’s business requires me to learn how to be a servant.  A portion of my service is to care for those I am with.  This includes family, neighbors; fellow workers where I am employed, and people that I meet during the course of a day.  A servant serves.


1/24   Col 1:6
This same Good News that came to you is going out all over the world. It is changing lives everywhere, just as it changed yours that very first day you heard and understood the truth about God’s great kindness to sinners.

God is seeking to save every single person on this earth.  Many seek to refute this but the Lord continues with His call for salvation.  When we accept God’s saving grace we become part of His seeking the lost.  We do what the Father calls us to do.  God loves people and our ministry in Christ is to people.  We tell the story, and the Father gives the call.  We don’t save people we simple tell them what the Father has done for us.


1/25   Col 2:3
In him lie hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.

Jesus is Lord.  He is Lord of all things.  In Him all things that were created exist.  Christ is as necessary for a Godly life as oxygen is for living on earth.  Without Jesus all of our spirituality is just a foolish exercise.  Christ is all and in all and is available for you and me to live the normal Christian life.  The normal life of a Christian is to be totally focused on Christ and what He has for us to do.


1/26   Col 2:8-10
Don’t let anyone lead you astray with empty philosophy and high-sounding nonsense that come from human thinking and from the evil powers of this world, and not from Christ.  For in Christ the fullness of God lives in a human body, and you are complete through your union with Christ. He is the Lord over every ruler and authority in the universe.

You and I have everything we need in Jesus.  When we ask Christ into our heart we are saved.  We don’t need to go on to higher things because Christ is the highest.  When we see Jesus we have seen the Father.  Christ is God’s everything.  Know Jesus and you will know how to live a righteous, Godly life.


1/27   Philippians 2:3
Don’t be selfish; don’t live to make a good impression on others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourself.

I owe everything to Jesus.  Christ is the foundation and substance of my life.  I can do nothing outside of Jesus.  Knowing this I can live with the full understanding that without the grace of the Lord Jesus I too would be lost.  Where I am weak Jesus is strong.


1/28   Philippians 2:14-15
In everything you do, stay away from complaining and arguing, so that no one can speak a word of blame against you. You are to live clean, innocent lives as children of God in a dark world full of crooked and perverse people. Let your lives shine brightly before them.

Love, real love, is alien to this world.  Our light is light of help.  We are called to help those we live among.  A joyous life that is focused on serving is a life that will be totally different than anything the world does.  When I care about people I will draw people to the Lord.


1/29   Philippians 3:1-2
Whatever happens, dear brothers and sisters, may the Lord give you joy. I never get tired of telling you this. I am doing this for your own good.

Joy is a result of being with the Lord.  It is not a restless exuberance or wild raving.  Joy is given to us by Jesus so that we can live a productive and confident Christian life.  In the face of all the challenges and unknowns of life I can know this, Jesus loves me.  His love gives me great joy.

1/30   Ephesians 1:4
Long ago, even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes.

My mind cannot comprehend the magnitude of God’s love for me.  He has loved, he does love and he always will love me.  I want to love the Lord.  Therefore, I want to do what He says.  Today, this moment I will focus my heart on the Lord.  Today and every today I will place the Lord Jesus first in my life.


1/31   Ephesians 1:5
His unchanging plan has always been to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. And this gave him great pleasure.

God has a plan that includes me.  The Lord places great value on our lives.  Each one of us is an important part of His plan.  We can look at our lives and rejoice in whatever circumstance we find ourselves in because the Lord has a plan for our lives.  When we get off course, He will bring us back on course.  When we taste failure it is always with victory in the background.  Jesus is Lord.

December 2004

12/01               Mark 6:31
Then Jesus said, “Let’s get away from the crowds for a while and rest.”

The Christmas season is beginning and most of us will have very activity filled days and weeks.  Remember to set aside some time to rest so that you don’t miss the reason for the season.  Jesus is alive.  He is alive in you therefore you can rejoice.


12/02               John 3:3
Jesus replied, “I assure you, unless you are born again, you can never see the Kingdom of God.”

The Father has no grandchildren.  Our salvation is a personal decision that is between us and Jesus.  Make sure that you have asked Jesus to forgive you of your sin and take control of your life.  A child of God is always growing in Christ likeness.


12/03               John 12:20-21
Some Greeks who had come to Jerusalem to attend the Passover paid a visit to Philip, who was from Bethsaida in Galilee. They said, “Sir, we want to meet Jesus.”

Telling about Jesus is simple.  When Christ is the center of my life people will come asking me about my life.  Jesus makes a difference in everything I do.


12/04               John 17:25-26
“O righteous Father, the world doesn’t know you, but I do; and these disciples know you sent me.  And I have revealed you to them and will keep on revealing you. I will do this so that your love for me may be in them and I in them.”

If I want to grow in Christ-likeness I will need to spend time with Jesus.  I do this by reading His Word, meditating on His Word and putting His Word to work in my life.  The Word of God reveals Jesus and God’s directions for my daily life.


12/05               Acts 9:3-6
As he was nearing Damascus on this mission, a brilliant light from heaven suddenly beamed down upon him!  He fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to him, “Saul! Saul! Why are you persecuting me?”  “Who are you, sir?” Saul asked. And the voice replied, “I am Jesus, the one you are persecuting!  Now get up and go into the city, and you will be told what you are to do.”

My salvation experience was totally different from Paul’s.  Yours may be too.  My salvation experience was a point in time where I knew that I was lost and that Jesus was the only way.  I asked Christ into my heart and surrendered my life to Him.  Jesus saved me and bears witness to His salvation every day of my life.


12/06               Acts 10:19-20
Meanwhile, as Peter was puzzling over the vision, the Holy Spirit said to him, “Three men have come looking for you. Go down and go with them without hesitation. All is well, for I have sent them.”

The Lord is active in our lives.  Sometimes we don’t realize the Lord’s activity until afterwards.  There are times that we know without any doubt that we are specifically being directed by the Lord.  My life belongs to Jesus.  I want to know Him more and to see His activity in my life more clearly.  A growing relationship with Jesus will reveal His activity more each day.


12/07               Eph 1:4
Long ago, even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes.

Our relationship with Jesus is not an accident.  Christ came looking for us.  Jesus loves you and me and is seeking the best for our lives.  Eternity beckons but life right now is very important.  I want to be what the Lord planned for me to be.  I want to be used by Jesus.


12/08               Eph 2:4-5
But God is so rich in mercy, and he loved us so very much, that even while we were dead because of our sins, he gave us life when he raised Christ from the dead. (It is only by God’s special favor that you have been saved!)

I never get what I deserve.  My life is so rich in Christ.  Everything that happens to me can be used to develop my relationship with the Lord.  I belong.  I am loved.  Jesus is alive in me and active in my life.

12/09          Ephesians 3:6
And this is the secret plan: The Gentiles have an equal share with the Jews in all the riches inherited by God’s children. Both groups have believed the Good News, and both are part of the same body and enjoy together the promise of blessings through Christ Jesus.

Jesus loves me and you.  His concern for us is much greater than the human mind can comprehend.  I am His.  As I face the struggles and uncertainties of life I can live with the absolute confidence that Jesus loves me.


12/10          Ephesians 4:1-2
Therefore I, a prisoner for serving the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of your calling, for you have been called by God.  Be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love.

Love is shown by the way I act.  My actions towards the unlovely and uncaring are a significant indicator of the way that I feel about Jesus.


12/11          Ephesians 5:2
Live a life filled with love for others, following the example of Christ, who loved you and gave himself as a sacrifice to take away your sins. And God was pleased, because that sacrifice was like sweet perfume to him.

Love is an action that is always combined with sacrifice.  I cannot make anyone love me.  No one can stop me from loving them, it is always my choice.  When I love like Jesus loves, heaven knows and the Father is pleased and it will hurt.


12/12          Ephesians 6:11-12
Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies and tricks of the Devil.  For we are not fighting against people made of flesh and blood, but against the evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against those mighty powers of darkness who rule this world, and against wicked spirits in the heavenly realms.

Evil is an aggressive force seeking to devour us.  Do not let evil control you or sidetrack you from what the Lord has called you to do simply turn back to Jesus.  The solutions to our problems, especially when we make bad choices take time to materialize and always require the presence of our loving Lord Jesus.


12/13          Philippians 1:3-6
Every time I think of you, I give thanks to my God.  I always pray for you, and I make my requests with a heart full of joy because you have been my partners in spreading the Good News about Christ from the time you first heard it until now.  And I am sure that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on that day when Christ Jesus comes back again.

You are always in my prayers.  I write these devotions to you so that you may know that someone is praying for you.  Pouring out my heart gives me a chance to be encouraged and to share what the Lord can do in any Christian’s life.  I too must confess that I am chief of sinners but Jesus loves me and the Lord is in control.  Be blessed and be a blessing today.


12/14          Philippians 2:8
And in human form he obediently humbled himself even further by dying a criminal’s death on a cross.

As we stood in Jerusalem in the place where Christ was imprisoned we were overwhelmed by the realization of the magnitude of His suffering.  He gave me more than I can comprehend.  He gave me more than I could give.  Jesus is Lord.  He is Lord of my life.


12/15           Philippians 3:1
Whatever happens, dear brothers and sisters, may the Lord give you joy. I never get tired of telling you this. I am doing this for your own good.

The Lord makes us whole.  I make bad choices and am a sinner.  Yet the Lord continues to work in my life every day helping me to grow, to change and to survive.  His presence equips me in the face of fear or failure or frustration to say that I can have joy.  Life is an opportunity for me to be what the Lord planned for me to be.  Joy in the Lord is my choice.


12/16          Philippians 4:4-5
Always be full of joy in the Lord. I say it again – rejoice!  Let everyone see that you are considerate in all you do. Remember, the Lord is coming soon.

Joy is something that enables me to break through the barriers of separation that sin has caused in the world.  I can meet people where they are and not be overwhelmed by a sense of hopelessness or frustration.  Joy equips me to love others no matter how they treat me.


12/17          Colossians 1:6
This same Good News that came to you is going out all over the world. It is changing lives everywhere, just as it changed yours that very first day you heard and understood the truth about God’s great kindness to sinners.

When Jesus came into my heart I was never the same again.  I can truthfully say that the Lord has consistently and aggressively intervened in my life to guide me, to discipline me and to equip me to grow.  Sometimes things looked dim but then the day came when I realized the presence of His joy.  Jesus loves me and you.


12/18 Colossians 2:3
In him lie hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.

Everything I need to live an abundant Christian life is found in Jesus.  Whatever I need, if I stay close to Jesus and submit my way to Him He will direct me in the right way.


12/19          Colossians 3:1
Since you have been raised to new life with Christ, set your sights on the realities of heaven, where Christ sits at God’s right hand in the place of honor and power.

What we see, feel and touch is passing away.  Heaven is an eternal reality.  I want to spend my life growing in an awareness of the presence of Jesus and the reality of heaven.  Indeed I have an eternal reward but I also have a present help when I can realize that I am not alone and that the resources of the Father are used to equip me to accomplish His plan for my life.  Jesus is alive and is alive in me.


12/20          Colossians 4:2
Devote yourselves to prayer with an alert mind and a thankful heart.

Prayer is work.  Prayer is challenging.  Time works against us.  It seeks to veil the activity of the Lord Jesus in our lives.  Work hard at prayer remembering that the time is short and that all around us people need strengthening.  Christian spiritual growth involves all of us and our prayers are a major contributor to the maturing of a fellow believer.  Prayer is also important as we seek to work out what the Lord has called us to do.  Prayer is work.


12/21          Luke 2:1-4
At that time the Roman emperor, Augustus, decreed that a census should be taken throughout the Roman Empire.   (This was the first census taken when Quirinius was governor of Syria.) All returned to their own towns to register for this census.  And because Joseph was a descendant of King David, he had to go to Bethlehem in Judea, David’s ancient home. He traveled there from the village of Nazareth in Galilee.

God is able to accomplish His purpose in our life.  He knows what is going on.  He will provide us with a solution.  Every thought that Jesus has towards you or me is a thought for good.  The key for me is to make sure that my life is Christ focused.  Jesus loves me and you.


12/22          Luke 2:5-7
He took with him Mary, his fiancé, who was obviously pregnant by this time. And while they were there, the time came for her baby to be born. She gave birth to her first child, a son. She wrapped him snugly in strips of cloth and laid him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the village inn.

What the world saw as defeat was a victory for God.  So many times in my own life when I see a situation that is discouraging I can take heart because the Lord turns defeat into victory.  My life is in Christ and He has saved me.  That alone is a great victory of the Lord.


12/23           Luke 2:8-14
That night some shepherds were in the fields outside the village, guarding their flocks of sheep.  Suddenly, an angel of the Lord appeared among them, and the radiance of the Lord’s glory surrounded them. They were terribly frightened, but the angel reassured them. “Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I bring you good news of great joy for everyone!  The Savior – yes, the Messiah, the Lord – has been born tonight in Bethlehem, the city of David!  And this is how you will recognize him: You will find a baby lying in a manger, wrapped snugly in strips of cloth!”  Suddenly, the angel was joined by a vast host of others – the armies of heaven – praising God: “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and peace on earth to all whom God favors.

Jesus brings peace.  Though my world is upside down the Lord brings peace into my heart.  The Lord of life is also the Lord of my circumstances.


12/24           Luke 2:15-20
When the angels had returned to heaven, the shepherds said to each other, “Come on, let’s go to Bethlehem! Let’s see this wonderful thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”  They ran to the village and found Mary and Joseph. And there was the baby, lying in the manger.  Then the shepherds told everyone what had happened and what the angel had said to them about this child.  All who heard the shepherds’ story were astonished, but Mary quietly treasured these things in her heart and thought about them often.  The shepherds went back to their fields and flocks, glorifying and praising God for what the angels had told them, and because they had seen the child, just as the angel had said.

Jesus is born.  Immanuel has come.  The Messiah is with us.  Praise God from whom all blessings flow, Jesus is Lord of all.

12/25           Matthew 2:1-6
Jesus was born in the town of Bethlehem in Judea, during the reign of King Herod. About that time some wise men from eastern lands arrived in Jerusalem, asking,  “Where is the newborn king of the Jews? We have seen his star as it arose, and we have come to worship him.”  Herod was deeply disturbed by their question, as was all of Jerusalem.  He called a meeting of the leading priests and teachers of religious law. “Where did the prophets say the Messiah would be born?” he asked them.  “In Bethlehem,” they said, “for this is what the prophet wrote:   ‘O Bethlehem of Judah, you are not just a lowly village in Judah, for a ruler will come from you who will be the shepherd for my people Israel.’

Shiloh has come.  Jesus is alive.  The King came as one of the lowliest so that He could identify with anyone of us.  He saw my need before I was born and came into this world for me.  I love Jesus and He loves me.


12/26           Matthew 2:7-12
Then Herod sent a private message to the wise men, asking them to come see him. At this meeting he learned the exact time when they first saw the star.  Then he told them, “Go to Bethlehem and search carefully for the child. And when you find him, come back and tell me so that I can go and worship him, too!”

After this interview the wise men went their way. Once again the star appeared to them, guiding them to Bethlehem. It went ahead of them and stopped over the place where the child was.  When they saw the star, they were filled with joy!  They entered the house where the child and his mother, Mary, were, and they fell down before him and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasure chests and gave him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.  But when it was time to leave, they went home another way, because God had warned them in a dream not to return to Herod.

When my world is tumbling out of control I can remember that nothing surprises the Lord.  He is able to guide me and equip me to face the chaos of this world.  I am not alone and the Lord is seeking that I know Him.  If I will obey He will equip.  And when I do something foolish, I can have absolute confidence that the Lord will forgive me and help me correct my actions.  Jesus loves me.


12/27 John 3:16
“For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.

I choose Jesus.  My life is His.  I cannot control the events of my life nor can I change who I am.  I can choose the One I will follow and it is Jesus.  He is Lord and He is interested in me having a growing relationship with Him.


12/28 John 12:26
All those who want to be my disciples must come and follow me, because my servants must be where I am. And if they follow me, the Father will honor them.

I can be a disciple.  Discipleship requires that I spend time with Jesus, let Him have the concerns of my life, obey Him and trust Him to use me.  I have value and worth and the Lord loves me.  Jesus is Lord.


12/29 John 17:9
“My prayer is not for the world, but for those you have given me, because they belong to you.

I asked Jesus to come into my heart and save me.  He did.  Not everyone that prays to the Lord or seeks to get Him to do things for them is His child.  A child of God knows that he/she belongs to Jesus and that the Lord is their Father.  Jesus is praying for you at this very moment.  Choose Jesus as your Lord.


12/30 Acts 9:27
Then Barnabas brought him to the apostles and told them how Saul had seen the Lord on the way to Damascus. Barnabas also told them what the Lord had said to Saul and how he boldly preached in the name of Jesus in Damascus.

People count with Jesus.  Everyone I meet is important to the Lord.  I need to develop myself as an encourager.  The way I treat others will change the way I feel about myself.  If everyone I know and meet is important to me, my self esteem will grow and the way I see my life will change.  Life will be full of opportunities.  My troubles will become smaller and my victories will increase.  Jesus loves me.


12/31 Acts 10:34-35
Then Peter replied, “I see very clearly that God doesn’t show partiality.  In every nation he accepts those who fear him and do what is right.


I show love by the way I act towards others.  Love will cause me to reach out to people I know and help them deal with their life.  I will not patronize people nor will I preach at them.  I will be a helper.  I will meet the needs of the people that I can.  What I do counts and it changes me.


November 2004

11/01 1Sam 7:3
Then Samuel said to all the people of Israel, “If you are really serious about wanting to return to the LORD, get rid of your foreign gods and your images of Ashtoreth. Determine to obey only the LORD; then he will rescue you from the Philistines.”

Obedience is an action. We choose to obey the Lord. I must determine in my heart that I will do exactly what the Lord says. This affects everything I do. I will stop sinning. I will start doing the things that the Lord has called me to do. Obedience is the foundation for growth and maturity.


11/02 1 Sam 17:31-32
Then David’s question was reported to King Saul, and the king sent for him. “Don’t worry about a thing,” David told Saul. “I’ll go fight this Philistine!”

I can do what the Lord calls me to do. Serving the Lord requires that I focus my life on Him and not on the world. The world view only sees obstacles. A Godly view only sees obedience. When I am serving the Lord, I will see the opportunity and serve Jesus by obeying Him.


11/03 1 Sam 31:7
When the Israelites on the other side of the Jezreel Valley and beyond the Jordan saw that their army had been routed and that Saul and his sons were dead, they abandoned their towns and fled. So the Philistines moved in and occupied their towns.

Trust in Jesus. Trusting in people, wealth, or strength will always disappoint you. When you trust in things that are passing away you will suffer the consequences of your error. When you trust in the Lord you will have eternal life and wisdom, mercy and grace for daily living.


11/04           2 Samuel 5:10
And David became more and more powerful, because the LORD God Almighty was with him.


The Lord is our strength.  He fills us with His power so that we can live in this world.  We need to remember that this place is not our home.  We are simply passing through.  We will live for eternity in the presence of the Living Lord.  It will strengthen us if we claim that promise right now.  The Lord is with us.


11/05           1 Kings 3:3
Solomon loved the LORD and followed all the instructions of his father, David, except that Solomon, too, offered sacrifices and burned incense at the local altars.


Paul’s confession of his sinfulness is a good warning for each one of us.  Sin is never far away.  Sin is always seeking to usurp the Lord’s authority in our lives.  Sin causes me to quit evaluating myself and blame others.  Our sin problem is real and must be dealt with.  Only Jesus can forgive our sin.


11/06           II Kings 18:16
Hezekiah even stripped the gold from the doors of the LORD’s Temple and from the doorposts he had overlaid with gold, and he gave it all to the Assyrian king.


The Lord gave Israel its wealth.  The Lord called Israel His people.  Hezekiah forgot who owned him.  Fear can cause any of us to make hasty, wrong choices.  It is in our daily time with the Lord that we fortify our souls to deal with each day’s challenge.  Time with Jesus is always time well spent.


11/07             I Chronicles 11:3
So there at Hebron David made a covenant with the leaders of Israel before the LORD. They anointed him king of Israel, just as the LORD had promised through Samuel.


The Christian life requires commitment.  Jesus loves me and He forgives my sin.  I am committed to serving Him and Him alone every day of my life.  Every thing I do and say is to be tempered by the Lord’s hand.  Jesus is Lord.  My covenant in life is with Jesus Christ.


11/08                    I Chronicles 15:25
Then David and the leaders of Israel and the generals of the army went to the home of Obed-edom to bring the Ark of the LORD’s covenant up to Jerusalem with a great celebration.


Jesus is the only way to the Father.  The Lord did not need our council to create anything nor does He accept our council on developing a relationship with Him.  As much as man would like to make a relationship with God something anyone can do any way they choose, Jesus is the only way to the Father.


11/09                    I Chronicles 17:4
“Go and tell my servant David, ‘This is what the LORD says: You are not the one to build me a temple to live in.


The Lord will not hide His will from you.  A tragedy in the life of many Christians is that for much of their life they are trying to tell God what they are going to do.  When they arrive at the end of their days, they often discover that they have simply wasted much of their life.  Ask Jesus what to do and He will tell you.  The key when Christ leads is for you to follow.


11/10                    I Chronicles 17:20
“O LORD, there is no one like you – there is no other God. We have never even heard of another god like you!


God is unique and one of a kind.  No other God has ever existed.  He is and always will be.  The miracle of miracles is that He desires a relationship with me.  Through Christ I have direct access to the throne room of our majestic creator.  Thank you Lord Jesus, for loving me and forgiving me of my sin.


11/11                    II Chronicles 3:1-2
So Solomon began to build the Temple of the LORD in Jerusalem on Mount Moriah, where the LORD had appeared to Solomon’s father, King David. The Temple was built on the threshing floor of Araunah the Jebusite, the site that David had selected.  The construction began in mid-spring, during the fourth year of Solomon’s reign.


The Lord is involved in our work.  His plan for our lives includes the work that we do.  It is important that we do our work as unto the Lord.  Everything we do is important to our Father.  Rejoice and work.  The Lord is good.


11/12 Ezra 3:11
With praise and thanks, they sang this song to the LORD: “He is so good! His faithful love for Israel endures forever!” Then all the people gave a great shout, praising the LORD because the foundation of the LORD’s Temple had been laid.


We can always praise the Lord.  He is perfect and His view is eternal.  We are imperfect and have a very limited view.  Therefore, because I trust and love the Lord I can always praise Him.


11/13                    Nehemiah 1:10-11a
“We are your servants, the people you rescued by your great power and might.  O Lord, please hear my prayer!


Jesus came for me.  He paid my price.  My life is bound up in Jesus.  I am a part of His work in this world.  When I am in trouble Jesus hears my plea.  When my world is overrun and I am sinking fast Jesus will not ignore my need.


11/14                    I Corinthians 13:7
Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.


Jesus loves me.  Every thought that the Lord Jesus has towards me is a thought for good.  My life was created for good and serving Jesus results in good.  Life is good.


11/15                    Esther 4:13-14
Mordecai sent back this reply to Esther: “Don’t think for a moment that you will escape there in the palace when all other Jews are killed.  If you keep quiet at a time like this, deliverance for the Jews will arise from some other place, but you and your relatives will die. What’s more, who can say but that you have been elevated to the palace for just such a time as this?”


There are no small places in the Kingdom of God.  Jesus uses each one of us in a place that we can be successful and useable.  We serve the Lord.  Service to Jesus is caring for those around us.  People count with the Lord.


11/16                    Job 42:1-2
Then Job replied to the LORD:  “I know that you can do anything, and no one can stop you.


We are not at the mercy of the world.  Jesus is Lord and is Lord of all.  We are part of His work in this world.  Nothing can stop the Lord.


11/17                    Psalm 6:9
The LORD has heard my plea; the LORD will answer my prayer.


I can live my life with the knowledge that the Lord is on my side.  He loves me.  He desires for me to talk with Him and put my burden upon Him.  When I am walking with Jesus the burdens of life will be light.


11/18                    Psalm 10:11
The wicked say to themselves, “God isn’t watching! He will never notice!”


The Lord is in control.  The wicked live as if there is no God.  Their evil lifestyle does not affect the reality of the Lord.  Our lives in this world are only a tiny speck on eternity.  The Lord is giving us an opportunity to develop a relationship with Him.  Jesus would that no one be lost.  His patience is not an indication of weakness only a sign of His love.


11/19                    Psalm 11:5
The LORD examines both the righteous and the wicked. He hates everyone who loves violence.


Violence is destructive and divisive.  The Lord calls each one of us to a life of love.  Love is an action and in many cases is the direct opposite of violence.  Love calls us to sacrifice, service and submission.  The Lord is in control.


11/20                    Psalm 15:1
Who may worship in your sanctuary, LORD? Who may enter your presence on your holy hill?


Jesus equips us to worship the Lord.  Christ cleanses us from our sin, and gives us His righteousness.  On the basis of our salvation in Christ, we can come before the Lord and worship Him.  Jesus is God’s everything.


11/21                    Psalm 16:1
Keep me safe, O God, for I have come to you for refuge.


There is safety with the Lord.  In Jesus we live and move and exist.  Without Jesus we are dead in our trespasses and sin.  Man on His own does not acknowledge God nor does he follow God.  In Christ we have a Shepherd that will see us through life and at death take us into the physical presence of the Father.  Jesus is Lord.


11/22                    Psalm 19:8
The commandments of the LORD are right, bringing joy to the heart. The commands of the LORD are clear, giving insight to life.


Jesus requires that I obey Him.  His directions to me are clear and detailed.  He calls me to obedience because He knows what is best for me.  I always see the future as uncertain.  Jesus knows the future and equips me to deal with the future.  Obedience is the pathway to an abundant life.


11/23                    Psalm 20:7
Some nations boast of their armies and weapons, but we boast in the LORD our God.


I want to be praised.  I enjoy praise.  But in my heart I know that when I receive praise it is often times not warranted.  However, the Lord is worthy of all my praise.  He is great and wonderful.  Praise the Lord.


11/24                    Psalm 23:1
The LORD is my shepherd; I have everything I need.


In a nation with great abundance it is difficult to realize how effectively the Lord meets my need.  He knows the future and I don’t.  Whistling through the unknown of the future with confidence is not the way to deal with my need.  Growing in my relationship with Jesus is the only way I can have my needs met.


11/25                    Psalm 27:1
The LORD is my light and my salvation – so why should I be afraid? The LORD protects me from danger – so why should I tremble?


This world is passing away.  In Jesus I have present and eternal security.  Jesus has a plan for my life.  I can live each day knowing that the Lord will not desert me nor will He let me down.  The Lord is good.  His plans for me are good.  I can live confidently with that knowledge.


11/26                    Psalm 30:1
I will praise you, LORD, for you have rescued me. You refused to let my enemies triumph over me.


Whatever I do, whatever I face I can live with a joyous heart.  Joy comes out of my relationship with the Lord and not as a result of what is happening to me at the moment.  The Lord loves me, has a good plan for my life and one day will escort me into the presence of the Father.  This is real joy worthy of all praise and honor to God.


11/27                    Psalm 51:1-4
Have mercy on me, O God, because of your unfailing love. Because of your great compassion, blot out the stain of my sins.  Wash me clean from my guilt. Purify me from my sin.  For I recognize my shameful deeds – they haunt me day and night.  Against you, and you alone, have I sinned; I have done what is evil in your sight. You will be proved right in what you say, and your judgment against me is just.


Sin is a destructive force in life.  It is prolific and aggressive.  You and I must recognize our need for cleansing and forgiveness.  I want to make sure that my heart is sensitive and that my sin is forgiven.  One thing I am aware of is that when I condemn and criticize others in my heart sin is crouching at my door.  Forgive me Lord for my sin and help me change my ways.


11/28                    Psalm 70:4-5
But may all who search for you be filled with joy and gladness. May those who love your salvation repeatedly shout, “God is great!”  But I am poor and needy; please hurry to my aid, O God. You are my helper and my savior; O LORD, do not delay!


This world is a tough and difficult place.  Sin seeks to masquerade as good and I must be on the alert.  Time with Jesus is the very thing I need each day to help me live a Godly life.  The faster my pace the more I need time with Jesus.


11/29                    Psalm 94:12
Happy are those whom you discipline, LORD, and those whom you teach from your law.


I belong to Jesus.  I spend time with Jesus.  I am trusting Jesus with my soul and eternity.  His correction is a confidence builder as I grow in my faith.

11/30                    Psalm 100:1-5
Shout with joy to the LORD, O earth!  Worship the LORD with gladness. Come before him, singing with joy.  Acknowledge that the LORD is God! He made us, and we are his. We are his people, the sheep of his pasture.  Enter his gates with thanksgiving; go into his courts with praise. Give thanks to him and bless his name.  For the LORD is good. His unfailing love continues forever, and his faithfulness continues to each generation.


God is good.  Everything about the Lord is positive and glorious.  He is worthy of my praise and my attention.  I can praise the Lord and worship Him.  Great is the Lord.

October 2004

10/01 Genesis 1:1
In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.

You and I have the wonderful privilege of having a relationship with the creator. Imagine for a moment what it would be like to be able to walk into the Oval Office in Washington at anytime. In Christ we have the privilege as His child to come in and visit with our Creator at any time. Spend more time with Jesus. He is our strength and constant companion.

10/02 Genesis 2:2
On the seventh day, having finished his task, God rested from all his work.

I tend to be a workaholic. My life is tied up in my work. I must learn to rest. I need to mature to the point that I recognize that when I am rested I work better. Also, when I am rested I can serve the Lord better. Jesus wants me, not my work. Salvation is by grace and the effectiveness of God’s grace does not require my work. I think for most of us this is a tough lesson. The Lord really does love me.

10/03 Genesis 2:15
The LORD God placed the man in the Garden of Eden to tend and care for it.

I am called to be a faithful worker. There is a job I am called to do. Part of my relationship with the Lord and my self-respect is based upon my willingness to do good work. Laziness creates many problems. A proper work ethic equips me to mature as a servant of the Lord.

10/04 Genesis 3:9-10
The LORD God called to Adam, “Where are you?” He replied, “I heard you, so I hid. I was afraid because I was naked.”

I am saved by grace. The Lord knows everything I do. It is imperative that I come quickly to His throne of grace and confess my sin. When I harbor my sin I will suffer. When I repentant and change I can rejoice.

10/05 Genesis 8:1
But God remembered Noah and all the animals in the boat. He sent a wind to blow across the waters, and the floods began to disappear.

The Lord Jesus is always faithful. He will never leave you alone. When you find yourself stranded, at the end of your strength, the Lord is with you. He knows where you are and what you need. I am grateful the Lord knows where I am and what I need.

10/06 Genesis 12:4
So Abram departed as the LORD had instructed him, and Lot went with him. Abram was seventy-five years old when he left Haran.

The Lord does not hide His plan for our life from us. Obedience to what the Father is calling us to do is critical. When I know that the Lord wants me to do a certain thing or go in a certain direction I should be willing to listen and obey.

10/07 Genesis 14:14
When Abram learned that Lot had been captured, he called together the men born into his household, 318 of them in all. He chased after Kedorlaomer’s army until he caught up with them in Dan.

Lot chose the easy route and the best land. Abram stayed where he was and prospered. He also continued to love Lot. I am responsible for the way I feel and respond to others. When someone close is in trouble I need to be helpful. Their actions and reactions do not determine what I will do. Love is my motivation and my forgiveness of someone is automatic.

10/08 Genesis 21:31
So ever since, that place has been known as Beersheba – “well of the oath” – because that was where they had sworn an oath.

Do what you say, say what you do. Life is happening moment by moment. The ordinary, daily activities of our life are the substance of who we are and what we are seen as. Do the next right thing.

10/09 Genesis 22:7-8
Isaac said, “Father?””Yes, my son,” Abraham replied.”We have the wood and the fire,” said the boy, “but where is the lamb for the sacrifice?” “God will provide a lamb, my son,” Abraham answered. And they both went on together.

Do you think God will provide your lamb? The Father gives us 7,000 plus promises in His Word. Obedience is first and foremost in reaping the results of the promises we claim. Obey now. Weakness or circumstances never excuse us from obedience.

10/10 Genesis 26:23-25
From there Isaac moved to Beersheba, where the LORD appeared to him on the night of his arrival. “I am the God of your father, Abraham,” he said. “Do not be afraid, for I am with you and will bless you. I will give you many descendants, and they will become a great nation. I will do this because of my promise to Abraham, my servant.” Then Isaac built an altar there and worshiped the LORD. He set up his camp at that place, and his servants dug a well.

I can trust the Lord. In victory and defeat I can trust the Lord. One of His praiseworthy characteristics is trustworthiness. As Jesus steadfastly walked to the cross we see trust in action. I can trust the Lord.

10/11 Genesis 35:13-15
Then God went up from the place where he had spoken to Jacob. Jacob set up a stone pillar to mark the place where God had spoken to him. He then poured wine over it as an offering to God and anointed the pillar with olive oil. Jacob called the place Bethel – “house of God” – because God had spoken to him there.

Keep a spiritual journal. When the Lord speaks to you record it and remember it. Use it to remind you of how faithful the Lord is. It will be valuable during your times of struggle and difficulty. The Father speaks to us a lot. The problem is that we aren’t good listeners. Our faithfulness is based on His character and not our experience.

10/12 Genesis 39:23
The chief jailer had no more worries after that, because Joseph took care of everything. The LORD was with him, making everything run smoothly and successfully.

God is faithful. He loves us. Victory is not the measurement of our success in our spiritual relationship. We must be broken to accomplish the plan that the Father has for us. The Lord’s victory will come from our brokenness. The Lord will use us as we are available.

10/13 Genesis 46:2-3
During the night God spoke to him in a vision. “Jacob! Jacob!” he called. “Here I am,” Jacob replied. “I am God,” the voice said, “the God of your father. Do not be afraid to go down to Egypt, for I will see to it that you become a great nation there.

We are victorious when we let the Lord use us. We don’t have to know what every step will be. Obedience and a listening ear are required. The Lord will use you. His plan for you is perfect. You are important to Him.
10/14 Exodus 1:8
Then a new king came to the throne of Egypt who knew nothing about Joseph or what he had done.

People don’t have to know who we are for the Lord to use us. Guns and armies don’t conquer evil. Only in Christ will we ever accomplish the eternal purposes that the Lord has lined out for our lives. Jesus is God’s everything.

10/15 Exodus 4:1
But Moses protested again, “Look, they won’t believe me! They won’t do what I tell them. They’ll just say, ‘The LORD never appeared to you.'”

You know when the Lord speaks to you. You know the right thing to do. Trust the Lord. Trust Him to know what is best for you. Don’t just rely on your mind, trust in the Lord and faithfully serve Him. Do what Jesus says.
10/16 Exodus 12:11
“Wear your traveling clothes as you eat this meal, as though prepared for a long journey. Wear your sandals, and carry your walking sticks in your hands. Eat the food quickly, for this is the LORD’s Passover.

We are trained to question orders. It is important in a free society to make sure that we understand what we are doing and why we are doing it. When Jesus gives us orders we are called to obey. Spiritual wisdom comes from the Lord. I am called to a relationship with Jesus so that I know when He is speaking to me. When Jesus speaks I need to develop a habit of obedience. This is impossible for the human mind but normal for the surrendered heart.

10/17 Exodus 15:2-3
The LORD is my strength and my song; he has become my victory. He is my God, and I will praise him; he is my father’s God, and I will exalt him! The LORD is a warrior; yes, the LORD is his name!

My life is valuable. Jesus died for me. His grace and mercy is effective and effectual in my life. I can walk in victory. I can rejoice in all things. I am not forgotten, second class, a loser or too late. I am a child of God and as such participate in His victory with every breath I take.

10/18 Exodus 20:1-2
Then God instructed the people as follows: “I am the LORD your God, who rescued you from slavery in Egypt. “Do not worship any other gods besides me.

The Lord has rescued me. I am no longer dead in my trespasses but am now alive in Jesus. Christ has set me free. How remarkable and miraculous. I belong to Jesus. He is Lord.

10/19 Leviticus 19:2
“Say this to the entire community of Israel: You must be holy because I, the LORD your God, am holy.

Our Lord is unique and one of a kind. He demands that we be holy just as He is holy. Holiness marks us as different from the world. We recognize who we belong to and who we serve. We are not tied to the things that are passing away nor are we overwhelmed by the spirit of defeat. Our God is Lord. Jesus has rescued me from death to life. I am is here with me.

10/20 Numbers 13:31-33
But the other men who had explored the land with him answered, “We can’t go up against them! They are stronger than we are!” So they spread discouraging reports about the land among the Israelites: “The land we explored will swallow up any who go to live there. All the people we saw were huge. We even saw giants there, the descendants of Anak. We felt like grasshoppers next to them, and that’s what we looked like to them!”

Trust is not a thought. Trust is the way we act in light of the trustworthiness of the person we trust. I love the Lord. One of His primary characteristics is His love for me. I can trust the Lord whatever obstacles I face. When I get a word from the Lord to do something I can trust Him to provide.

10/21 Numbers 21:4
Then the people of Israel set out from Mount Hor, taking the road to the Red Sea to go around the land of Edom. But the people grew impatient along the way,

I am called to obedience. The Lord is in control and has a plan for me. As I work His plan it is imperative that I listen to Him and do what He says. If I am to follow the Lord I must be committed to being obedient. One of the critical elements of Christian maturity is obedience.

10/22 Deuteronomy 6:4-5
“Hear, O Israel! The LORD is our God, the LORD alone. And you must love the LORD your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your strength.

If I love the Lord it will radically change my life. I will no longer gaze at the physical world, daily enumerating the things and opportunities I don’t have. My focus will be on Jesus. I will listen to Him every day and as best I can obey Him. My divided heart will be united in a singular focus on serving the Lord.

10/23 Deuteronomy 34:4
Then the LORD said to Moses, “This is the land I promised on oath to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and I told them I would give it to their descendants. I have now allowed you to see it, but you will not enter the land.”

The world criticizes Christianity. Our tenets of love, service and surrender are out of step with the focus of the world. Jesus did not mislead us. The glitter of the world is superficial. Our obedience to Jesus changes us to the very marrow of our soul. I must be about my Father’s business because too many lost people are depending on me to share the Gospel.

10/24 Joshua 2:17-18
Before they left, the men told her, “We can guarantee your safety only if you leave this scarlet rope hanging from the window. And all your family members – your father, mother, brothers, and all your relatives – must be here inside the house.

There are 7,000 plus promises from the Lord in the Bible. It is a message written to you and me about our Creator’s great love for us. The Lord is faithful and trustworthy. He will see us through disaster, tribulation and failure. He is a great and mighty Lord.

10/25 Joshua 24:15
But if you are unwilling to serve the LORD, then choose today whom you will serve. Would you prefer the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates? Or will it be the gods of the Amorites in whose land you now live? But as for me and my family, we will serve the LORD.”

Choices are the everyday events that shape our lives. Will I choose to organize my time to have a daily quiet time with the Lord? Will I choose to do the next right thing in every aspect of my life? Godly choices create a mature Christian life.

10/26 Judges 4:14
Then Deborah said to Barak, “Get ready! Today the LORD will give you victory over Sisera, for the LORD is marching ahead of you.” So Barak led his ten thousand warriors down the slopes of Mount Tabor into battle.

I woke up in victory today. Jesus paid the price for my sin. He broke the chains of bondage to sin that separated me from the Lord. Every step I take today is a step of victory. The victory belonged to Jesus. Now throughout eternity I will live in His victory.

10/27 Judges 6:36-37
Then Gideon said to God, “If you are truly going to use me to rescue Israel as you promised, prove it to me in this way. I will put some wool on the threshing floor tonight. If the fleece is wet with dew in the morning but the ground is dry, then I will know that you are going to help me rescue Israel as you promised.”

Are you willing to do what the Lord has asked you to do? The Lord will give you touchstones of confidence when you are committed to doing the right thing. The problem in too many Christians lives is that they are committed to themselves and not to the Lord. Jesus will give us direction for our lives.

10/28 Judges 16:20
Then she cried out, “Samson! The Philistines have come to capture you!” When he woke up, he thought, “I will do as before and shake myself free.” But he didn’t realize the LORD had left him.

The Lord never changes. He loves us and is always seeking our best good. When you find yourself at the end of your rope and your entire world has crashed in upon you, stop and seek the Lord. Often times because of omission or commission we have forgotten our relationship with the Lord. Jesus will be right where you left Him, seeking to help you live your life.

10/29 Judges 18:31
So Micah’s carved image was worshiped by the tribe of Dan as long as the Tabernacle of God remained at Shiloh.

What a friend or respected associate believes is not what we need to learn and follow. We must follow Jesus. We can only do that when we have a personal, growing relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ. You are the only person that can make the right Godly choices for your life. Get busy and seek the Lord.

10/30 Ruth 4:17
The neighbor women said, “Now at last Naomi has a son again!” And they named him Obed. He became the father of Jesse and the grandfather of David.

God is in control. I often do not understand what the Lord is up to. This I know. Jesus loves me. The Lord is at work seeking my best good. He will not forsake me. I can trust the Lord because He knows what He is doing.

10/31 1 Samuel 1:26-27
“Sir, do you remember me?” Hannah asked. “I am the woman who stood here several years ago praying to the LORD. I asked the LORD to give me this child, and he has given me my request.

God answers prayer. Sometimes He says no. Sometimes He says yes. Sometimes it seems as though the Lord is simply being quiet. We can trust the Lord. We can talk with Him about anything and everything. I am learning to unburden my heart before the Lord and listen for His guidance.

September 2004

9/01/04 Psalm 46:1
God is our refuge and strength, always ready to help in times of trouble.

When I face insurmountable obstacles that overwhelm me and take me to the very edge of my trust I cry out to the Lord. He has never failed me. The Lord Jesus is always close by to help me.
9/02/04 1 John 1:9
But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us and to cleanse us from every wrong.

Sin entangles me so easily. I can truthfully say that it is a struggle at times not to sin. I can be so self-centered and so demanding. That gentle call from the Lord is always faithful to remind me who I belong to. When I hear His Word I immediately agree with Him, yes I have sinned again. My heartfelt response is forgive me Father. He does. I am renewed. The Lord is good.

9/03/04 Psalm 37:17
For the strength of the wicked will be shattered, but the LORD takes care of the godly.

The Lord is victorious. He has provided everything I need for life in the Lord Jesus Christ. Each one of his children has a different need and Jesus will provide what all of the Father’s children need. He has won the victory. Each one of us live in victory everyday.
9/04/04 Hebrews 3:14
For if we are faithful to the end, trusting God just as firmly as when we first believed, we will share in all that belongs to Christ.

Jesus has given me a new heart and put His spirit in me. I can trust Him to take me straight through life to that day when I will see Him face to face. The Lord is always faithful and I can live with the confidence that He will keep me for eternity. Nothing can steal me out of His hands. Christ has won the victory and I am victorious in Him.
9/05/04 Psalm 32:4
Day and night your hand of discipline was heavy on me. My strength evaporated like water in the summer heat.

The Father will deal with me when I wander from His side. His hand will reach out and bring me back home. He will not desert me. I will not lose Him. He will forgive my sin.

9/06/04 2 Thessalonians 3:3
But the Lord is faithful; he will make you strong and guard you from the evil one.

I am a child of the King. Jesus has saved me and grafted me into the family of God. I belong to Him. The evil one can abuse me, trick me, cause me to make mistakes and even mess up my work but he cannot take me away from the Father. Jesus has saved me unto eternity and His victory has been won. Every day of my life and into eternity I am living in the victory of Jesus.
9/07/04 Psalm 28:7
The LORD is my strength, my shield from every danger. I trust in him with all my heart. He helps me, and my heart is filled with joy. I burst out in songs of thanksgiving.

My strength is in Christ. As I know Him better I become stronger. My relationship with Him is my strength in troubled times. His presence brings peace. His love encourages me and equips me to see beyond problems to solutions.
9/08/04 1 Thessalonians 1:3
As we talk to our God and Father about you, we think of your faithful work, your loving deeds, and your continual anticipation of the return of our Lord Jesus Christ.

We need each other. The Christian life is a life of partnership. We pray for each other. What a privilege to take brothers and sisters in Christ before the Lord praying for their daily lives, ministries and safety. I am praying for you.

9/09/04 Psalm 22:19
O LORD, do not stay away! You are my strength; come quickly to my aid!

I need the Lord. So many of the things I face each day happen outside of my control. Life moves so quickly that I need the Lord’s help to keep focused. My prayer each morning is for the Father’s wisdom, mercy and grace as I go through the day. When surprises come I often need His immediate help. Without exception the Lord helps me at my point of need.

9/10/04 Ephesians 1:1
This letter is from Paul, chosen by God to be an apostle of Christ Jesus. It is written to God’s holy people in Ephesus, who are faithful followers of Christ Jesus.

Holy doesn’t mean religious. Holy means that we are different. It means that we act like Jesus. Jesus cared for people, all people. Christ died for our sin so that we might have an eternal relationship with Him. The problem in the Christian community today is that not many Christians want to die to self and serve. Suffering and discipline are keys in the Christian faith. Holy simply means that I act and live like Christ.

9/11/04 Psalm 18:32
God arms me with strength; he has made my way safe.

A life focused on Christ is secure from destruction. You and I as the children of God are outfitted for eternity. This phase of existence, life on earth, is simply a short step into eternity. I belong to Christ and the world cannot destroy me.

9/12/04 Acts 13:43
Many Jews and godly converts to Judaism who worshiped at the synagogue followed Paul and Barnabas, and the two men urged them, “By God’s grace, remain faithful.”

I must be growing in Christ-likeness. Faith is an action and not a thought. If I am faithful I am living a Christ-like life. Faithfulness is expressed by the way I live my life each day. A Christ focused life is a faithful life.

9/13/04 Psalm 18:1
I love you, LORD; you are my strength.

I must know the Lord to have His strength. If my life is focused on Christ and my actions are controlled by Him I will be like Him. If I am becoming more like Jesus I am growing closer to the Father each day. It is out of this relationship with the Father that I get strength to face every aspect of my life.

9/14/04 1 Corinthians 10:13
But remember that the temptations that come into your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will keep the temptation from becoming so strong that you can’t stand up against it. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you will not give in to it.

God is good. I am a sinner. If I will accept responsibility for my sin and confess it to the Lord, He will forgive my sin. Everyone faces temptation. Everyone faces a lot of temptation. Each one of us develops our spiritual strength based upon our willingness to let the Lord have control of our life. Habitual sin can be beaten if I am willing to focus on Christ and let Him have me. It takes time, and discipline under the Father’s hand to deal with temptation.

9/15/04 Psalm 10:10
The helpless are overwhelmed and collapse; they fall beneath the strength of the wicked.

Wealth is temporary. The wealthy too often prey upon the poor, weak willed and uneducated. I am called to help the helpless. Each one of us must be willing to help the unfortunate. Christ calls us to service and sacrifice. It is tough helping the helpless. It will not be appreciated this side of the heaven. But when we do for those that cannot do for themselves we are doing for the Lord. He uses His children on their knees to change the world.

9/16/04 1 Corinthians 4:5
So be careful not to jump to conclusions before the Lord returns as to whether or not someone is faithful. When the Lord comes, he will bring our deepest secrets to light and will reveal our private motives. And then God will give to everyone whatever praise is due.

God’s system of evaluation is different than mankinds. You cannot properly evaluate what another person thinks, feels or does. What we can do is focus our heart on serving the Lord. In addition we can focus our heart on being grateful for those we serve. Service is a basic element of growing in Christ-likeness. As I serve the Lord I will grow. Sometimes our growth surprises even us. People count with Jesus.

9/17/04 Psalm 84:1
For the LORD God is our light and protector. He gives us grace and glory. No good thing will the LORD withhold from those who do what is right.

Right is not popular. Right will often make you look weak. Right will sometimes cost you money. When you and I commit ourselves to doing the next right thing we will find that we are constantly growing in Christ. Do the right thing.

9/18/04 Luke 16:10
“Unless you are faithful in small matters, you won’t be faithful in large ones. If you cheat even a little, you won’t be honest with greater responsibilities.

Life is happening right now. What I do is important. The way I treat people is critical. My actions as I live my life each day are an indication of my relationship with the Lord. People count with Jesus.

9/19/04 Psalm 17:7
Show me your unfailing love in wonderful ways. You save with your strength those who seek refuge from their enemies.

Problems are universal. People are unique. The way that I deal with the problems I face is important to the Father. The Lord is with me and He is my shield and protection. He will equip me to face my problems.

9/20/04 1 Corinthians 4:5
So be careful not to jump to conclusions before the Lord returns as to whether or not someone is faithful. When the Lord comes, he will bring our deepest secrets to light and will reveal our private motives. And then God will give to everyone whatever praise is due.

I am responsible for the way that I live. When I sin I should be quick to confess my sin and change. I am not responsible for the way that others live. Judgment belongs to God. I am responsible to care for people and serve the Father.

9/21/04 Psalm 18:2
The LORD is my rock, my fortress, and my savior; my God is my rock, in whom I find protection. He is my shield, the strength of my salvation, and my stronghold.

I have everything I need in the Lord Jesus Christ. He will lead me right now and will never leave me. I can have complete confidence in the Lord. This world cannot destroy me. Eternity is my home.

9/22/04 Colossians 1:2
It is written to God’s holy people in the city of Colosse, who are faithful brothers and sisters in Christ. May God our Father give you grace and peace.

We are God’s children. His love for us is eternal. Every thought that the Lord has towards us is a thought for good. Each day we are recipients of His watch care and blessings. Grace gives us what we need and cannot earn. Peace keeps us in constant communion with the Father. What a joy to be a child of God.

9/23/04 Psalm 18:39
You have armed me with strength for the battle; you have subdued my enemies under my feet.

Life is filled with problems. The Lord doesn’t eliminate all of our obstacles and problems. He outfits us to deal with real life. I am able to deal with whatever challenges I face because the Lord is on my side.

9/24/04 1 Thessalonians 5:24
God, who calls you, is faithful; he will do this.

I cannot fully comprehend the Father’s love for me. It is a love that is so deep and so wide that He will stand with me through all of the ups and downs of my life even when I am the one causing the ups and downs. His love is so powerful that it can reach into the foolishness I often do and bring me back to His side. I am beloved of God. And you are too.

9/25/04 Psalm 23:3
He renews my strength. He guides me along right paths, bringing honor to his name.
God is able. He is able to equip me. He is able to guide me. He is able to defend me no matter what predicament I face. The Lord is my strength and His strength is limitless. The Lord is my guide and He always knows the right path. He will not let me stray too far from His side.

9/26/04 2 Timothy 2:13
If we are unfaithful, he remains faithful, for he cannot deny himself.

I can trust the Lord. Every promise that He gives me He will fulfill. The Lord Jesus will never fail me. I can live my life with the knowledge that Jesus is with me. The Lord is knowledgeable about every thing I do and He is never surprised. Jesus is faithful.

9/27/04 Psalm 29:11
The LORD gives his people strength. The LORD blesses them with peace.

I belong to Jesus. The Lord has made provision for me for eternity that begins right now. Jesus knows all that I will do and all that I will need. His love and concern for me is complete. He will equip me to face my life. His strength is more than adequate for every need that I will have.

9/28/04 Hebrews 10:32
Don’t ever forget those early days when you first learned about Christ. Remember how you remained faithful even though it meant terrible suffering.

The Lord is with us. We are the focus of His activity. The human condition means that I will tend towards forgetting how important my relationship with Jesus is. Jesus is the source of all that I do in my relationship with the Father. Jesus is God’s everything. I start with Jesus and one day will see Him face to face. I should be faithful in maintaining my passionate relationship with Him. One of my prayers is for Jesus to keep me close and help me to maintain my deep love for Him.

9/29/04 Psalm 44:3
They did not conquer the land with their swords; it was not their own strength that gave them victory. It was by your mighty power that they succeeded; it was because you favored them and smiled on them.

The Lord will fight our battles. The Lord will equip us in the hour of temptation. But for me to be victorious I should be ready now and not wait for the trial. It is so important for me to maintain a daily, sensitive relationship with Jesus that equips me to walk with Him moment by moment.

9/30/04 Psalm 33:17
Don’t count on your warhorse to give you victory – for all its strength, it cannot save you.

Our strength is in the Lord. Everything we have in this world will pass away. Things cannot help us. Our relationship with the Lord is eternal. It will not pass away. I am strong in the Lord. I am weak in me. The Lord is my Savior and strength.

August 2004

8/01/04 Revelation 7:12
They said, “Amen! Blessing and glory and wisdom and thanksgiving and honor and power and strength belong to our God forever and forever. Amen!”
The Lord Jesus is worthy of my praise. He is God’s everything. I can rejoice in life and live in death because of the Lord Jesus. Praise God from whom all blessings flow.
8/02/04 Revelation 5:12
And they sang in a mighty chorus: “The Lamb is worthy – the Lamb who was killed. He is worthy to receive power and riches and wisdom and strength and honor and glory and blessing.”
Jesus is glorious. He is too wonderful for words. I have a personal relationship with Christ. He knows me and all about me and He still loves me. What a blessing. What a savior.

8/03/04 Revelation 3:8
“I know all the things you do, and I have opened a door for you that no one can shut. You have little strength, yet you obeyed my word and did not deny me.
You and I labor in an evil world. It appears that evil is triumphant. Christ is on His throne. He has the power to destroy evil and rule immediately and yet He has the character that waits patiently upon the Father. As we struggle with evil we know that Christ will one day conquer all things. This day we wait patiently upon Him to return. Come Lord Jesus. We will be waiting.

8/04/04       1 Peter 4:11
Are you called to be a speaker? Then speak as though God himself were speaking through you. Are you called to help others? Do it with all the strength and energy that God supplies. Then God will be given glory in everything through Jesus Christ. All glory and power belong to him forever and ever. Amen.


Will I do what I can or will I whine about what I am not?  People waste a lot of energy trying to be something they aren’t.  If I will serve the Lord with what I have I will be used where I am.


8/05/04       James 4:6
He gives us more and more strength to stand against such evil desires. As the Scriptures say, “God sets himself against the proud, but he shows favor to the humble.”


Humility is a choice.  I don’t have to prove my spirituality.  The truth is every single person is a sinner of whom I am chief.  The sin in me is the only sin I must deal with.  If I can internalize this it will help me to walk humbly with my Lord Jesus.


8/06/04       Hebrews 13:9
So do not be attracted by strange, new ideas. Your spiritual strength comes from God’s special favor, not from ceremonial rules about food, which don’t help those who follow them.


Our society thrives on certification.  Certification proves that I have achieved a certain skill or knowledge.  It is so difficult for us to resist the certification of our spiritual relationship with Jesus.  The only relationship we will ever have with the Lord Jesus is a personal relationship.  It takes time and commitment on my part.


8/07/04       2 Timothy 1:8
So you must never be ashamed to tell others about our Lord. And don’t be ashamed of me, either, even though I’m in prison for Christ. With the strength God gives you, be ready to suffer with me for the proclamation of the Good News.


I can only share what I know and believe.  If I don’t know Jesus I cannot share Him.  If I know Jesus and my belief is weak I will not share Him with others.  What I must do is start where I am.  Belief grows out of my relationship with the Lord.  As my relationship grows my sharing will increase.


8/08/04       Colossians 2:19
But they are not connected to Christ, the head of the body. For we are joined together in his body by his strong sinews, and we grow only as we get our nourishment and strength from God.


If I want to grow in my relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ I will spend time with Him.  There is no shortcut to spiritual growth.  It takes time, consistency and discipline.  Grow, know and share.  This is a good thing.


8/09/04       Philippians 4:13
For I can do everything with the help of Christ who gives me the strength I need.


What is it you feel Christ wants you to do?  Have you hesitated to do it?  Is fear the cause?  Are you hesitant to think that the Lord would use you?  Many Christians feel this way a lot.  Take what you have to the Word of God.  For example you may have a sense you should share with a particular person.  Take it to the Word and ask Jesus to give you strength to do the next right thing.  He will lead you each step of the way.  You are a winner and the Lord will use you.


8/10/04       Ephesians 3:16
I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will give you mighty inner strength through his Holy Spirit.


I want to be strong in my faith.  People around me encourage me to be strong in my faith.  The key to strength is found in a growing relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ.  I have a choice.  I can spend time with Jesus and grow strong or I can develop a pattern of inconsistency in my time with the Lord and suffer.  The world knows when we are weak and will exploit our weakness.


8/11/04       1 Corinthians 1:25
This “foolish” plan of God is far wiser than the wisest of human plans, and God’s weakness is far stronger than the greatest of human strength.


The Lord knows what is going on.  He knows me.  He will not let me be destroyed.  The Lord is good and every thought that the Lord has towards you and me is a thought for good.


8/12/04       Romans 5:4
And endurance develops strength of character in us, and character strengthens our confident expectation of salvation.


I grow in strength by putting to work what the Lord tells me in my daily time with Him.  If I am not spending time with the Lord I will not grow in strength.  If I am spending time with the Lord and do not actively obey Him I will not grow in strength.  Strength and obedience go hand in hand.

8/13/04 Luke 10:27
The man answered, “‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your strength, and all your mind.’ And, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.'”


Love is the way we should live. It should be the reason for our actions and it should be beneficial for others. It creates a mindset that looks at others with respect and appreciation. It puts in our hearts a deep concern for the importance of what others are doing and need. People need Jesus. When we love the Father with all of our heart we will live the way that Jesus lived.

8/14/04 Zechariah 12:5
And the clans of Judah will say to themselves, ‘The people of Jerusalem have found strength in the LORD Almighty, their God.’


Jesus is in my heart and is my Lord. What I have is sufficient. All I need is Jesus.

8/15/04 Zechariah 4:6
Then he said to me, “This is what the LORD says to Zerubbabel: It is not by force nor by strength, but by my Spirit, says the LORD Almighty.


What has the Lord called you to do? He has called you to be his light where you are. We are only useable where we are. Tomorrow never comes. What I don’t have will never be available. Look to Jesus. Give Him what you have and He will use and bless you.

8/16/04 Habakkuk 3:19
The Sovereign LORD is my strength! He will make me as surefooted as a deer and bring me safely over the mountains.


Do you believe God is powerful enough to use you? Do you believe the Lord Jesus died for your sin and lives in you? If you do, then live like it. Be a servant and warrior of the Lord High God.

8/17/04 Habakkuk 1:11
They sweep past like the wind and are gone. But they are deeply guilty, for their own strength is their god.”


The world discards the helpless. The world has no time for second best. The Lord makes each one of us valuable and worthy in Himself. Jesus in us is the power of God to make our life important and valuable.

8/18/04 Psalm 144:1
Bless the LORD, who is my rock. He gives me strength for war and skill for battle.


Jesus equips me to face the powers and principalities of the air. They are seeking to devour me. The world wants me to fail. It is seeking to belittle and minimize the value of my life. Jesus makes my life valuable. He gives me a worthy purpose and equips me with the power and resources to accomplish His purpose.

8/19/04 Psalm 147:10
The strength of a horse does not impress him; how puny in his sight is the strength of a man.


The Lord is adequate for any situation that we face. He loves you. He will enable you to face the reality of your life. He brings victory to failure, usefulness to the outcast and help to the helpless. Jesus has not forgotten you. Go to Him for your strength.
8/20/04 Psalm 68:35
God is awesome in his sanctuary. The God of Israel gives power and strength to his people. Praise be to God!


God loves people most of all. He loves you and will help you right now. Go to Him in prayer. Ask Him specifically for what you need. Get to know Him. Recognize His concern for you. The Lord will meet your needs.

8/21/04 Psalm 71:7
My life is an example to many, because you have been my strength and protection.


The presence of God will bring peace to our hearts and to our lives. When we spend time with Him, He will nourish us and equip us to face real life. Every day life is learning to deal with obstacles in a positive and victorious way. Jesus will teach us how to do this. When we get to know Jesus we will find that joy will come looking for us.

8/22/04 Psalm 73:26
My health may fail, and my spirit may grow weak, but God remains the strength of my heart; he is mine forever.


Life is always changing. The power that the Lord Jesus gives us is the ability to deal with our lives in abundance. What ever I face, what ever changes, the Lord Jesus never changes. He is always there with me.

8/23/04 Psalm 75:10
For God says, “I will cut off the strength of the wicked, but I will increase the power of the godly.”


Eternal life is difficult for us to comprehend. Jesus stands with us now. He enables us to do the will of God where we are. As we look at this model we can have great confidence that the Lord is working in us for our good. When I go to be with the Father, Jesus will be with me every step of the way.

8/24/04 Psalm 81:1
Sing praises to God, our strength. Sing to the God of Israel.

It is good to praise the Lord. Praise opens our eyes to His greatness and awesome power. Praise shows us the value of His promises to us. Praise helps us see the Lord and to see His great love for us. Praise God from whom all blessings flow. I love my, thank you Father for giving it to me.

8/25/04 Psalm 86:16
Look down and have mercy on me. Give strength to your servant; yes, save me, for I am your servant.


Salvation is a gift. When Christ comes into our lives He saves us for eternity. As we build a relationship with the Father, He saves us for His use and fellowship. Yes Lord I am your servant.

8/26/04 Psalm 96:6
Honor and majesty surround him; strength and beauty are in his sanctuary.


Worship is special. It is time when we come together with brothers and sisters to praise the Lord. But, immediately it is more than we can imagine because the Lord is there with us. He is healing and revealing. He is encouraging and loving. Our wondrous praise of the Father results in a wonderful over flow to us of the love of God.

8/27/04 Psalm 105:4
Search for the LORD and for his strength, and keep on searching.


I am to seek the Lord. I am to seek Him at all times not just when I am hurting. When I develop a heart that is seeking for the Lord I will participate in all of His riches and glory. His blessings will be mine and my service will be His. We serve a wondrous Lord who loves each one of us.

8/28/04 Psalm 118:14
The LORD is my strength and my song; he has become my victory.


I have great needs but none as great as my need to be with Jesus. I have great opportunities but none so great that I will be distracted from Jesus. In Christ I have everything I need for eternity. In Christ I have the victory that I have so long sought. In Christ I am in the Father. It is a glorious victory when I see that all of my needs are met in Jesus.

8/29/04 Psalm 138:3
When I pray, you answer me; you encourage me by giving me the strength I need.


When I have a need, Jesus has a help. When I have a hurt, Jesus has a healing. The more I know Him the more I want to be with Him. Jesus is glorious and mighty and loving. I want to know Him more.

8/30/04 Psalm 65:6
You formed the mountains by your power and armed yourself with mighty strength.


Sin has a hold on man. Jesus destroys sin. I am facing a world that is always seeking to deceive me and pull me away from the Lord Jesus. Jesus has the strength I need so that I can live a holy life, different than the world. This life I live, I live in Christ.

8/31/04 Psalm 59:9
You are my strength; I wait for you to rescue me, for you, O God, are my place of safety.


What do you need for Jesus to do? Ask Him and He will help you. What do you need to become more like Christ? Ask Him and He will change you. What do you need to survive in change? Ask Jesus and He will enable you to survive. What is it that blinds you to your relationship with Jesus? Ask Him and He will give you light. Jesus will meet your need.

July 2004

7/1/04    Joshua 24:14-15
“So honor the LORD and serve him wholeheartedly. Put away forever the idols your ancestors worshiped when they lived beyond the Euphrates River and in Egypt. Serve the LORD alone. But if you are unwilling to serve the LORD, then choose today whom you will serve. Would you prefer the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates? Or will it be the gods of the Amorites in whose land you now live? But as for me and my family, we will serve the LORD.”

I must know the Lord by knowledge and experience. Knowing about Jesus doesn’t give me spiritual strength. Knowing Him in a personal and real way gives me the spiritual strength that I will need to serve Him today.
7/2/04    Judges 2:10
After that generation died, another generation grew up who did not acknowledge the LORD or remember the mighty things he had done for Israel.

In America today too many people know about Jesus but do not know Him as their Lord. Abortion and sexual immorality cannot coexist with spiritual maturity. I need to make sure that my life reflects His control of me and that I am constantly telling others about Jesus.

7/3/04 Jeremiah 31:29
“The people will no longer quote this proverb: ‘The parents eat sour grapes, but their children’s mouths pucker at the taste.’

Political Christianity does nothing to impart spiritual strength. People who do not know Jesus as their Lord and Savior will be doomed to lives of spiritual poverty. I know Jesus. I must do all I can for my children to hear about Christ and have an opportunity to accept Jesus. Everyone needs Jesus.

7/4/04    Revelation 3:20
“Look! Here I stand at the door and knock. If you hear me calling and open the door, I will come in, and we will share a meal as friends.

No person has to be lost. For each person it simply requires conviction, repentance, acceptance and faith for salvation in the Lord Jesus. Four steps to eternity. These four steps are the same for every person. Jesus is the only way to the Father.

7/5/04    Deuteronomy 4:36
“ Out of the heavens He let you hear His voice to discipline you; and on earth He let you see His great fire, and you heard His words from the midst of the fire.

People lead lives that are filled with fear. They are afraid of failure, rejection, their past, their future, pain, sickness and on and on. The truth is that many of the things we fear never come true. When we see Jesus, His presence will end our fears. The Lord Jesus will give us the courage we need to live an abundant life.
7/6/04    Mark 9:24
The father instantly replied, “I do believe, but help me not to doubt!”

We want to believe. We want to grow. What is in our way? We forget that Jesus is alive and lives in our hearts. We must call on Him to come and lead, guide and direct us. It is in the living presence of Christ that I can find the full resources of the Lord. I can trust the Lord.

7/7/04    1Kings 12:11
‘Whereas my father loaded you with a heavy yoke, I will add to your yoke; my father disciplined you with whips, but I will discipline you with scorpions.’ “

Discipline is like life. We must start where we are and develop a lifestyle of discipline. Talk is always easier than performance. Solomon’s son refused to listen to the advice of the elders. Pampered, spoiled people always think they have more complete knowledge than they really have. Start today where you are and begin your journey toward a lifestyle of holiness.

7/8/04    Job 5:17
“Behold, how happy is the man whom God reproves, So do not despise the discipline of the Almighty.

Salvation through Jesus Christ gives us a personal relationship with the Lord. He is our father and He knows what is best for us. When we get off course the Father will put us back on course. He knows what we need to accomplish that.

7/9/04    1 Timothy 6:11
But you, Timothy, belong to God; so run from all these evil things, and follow what is right and good. Pursue a godly life, along with faith, love, perseverance, and gentleness.
You and I are called to live as children of God. When we spend time in the Word of God and hide the Word in our heart we will be better equipped to recognize and deal with sin in our lives. If you find yourself at the mercy of some old sinful habit, get before the Lord with the Word of God and ask Jesus to help you grow and change. Then get up and do the next right thing.

7/10/04    1 Timothy 6:12
Fight the good fight for what we believe. Hold tightly to the eternal life that God has given you, which you have confessed so well before many witnesses.
When we know what to do we can put that to work in our daily lives. We control our hands and mouth and feet. The Word of God administered by the indwelling Spirit of God will cleanse and guide our hearts. If the heart is wrong our actions will simply reflect it.
7/11/04    Psalm 50:17
“For you hate discipline, And you cast My words behind you.

We serve the Lord. Too many want to control their relationship with the Lord and either have the Lord serve their interests or at worst be equally in charge. We cannot see the future. We know so very little. A Christ like life acknowledges the Lord’s control, submits to His guidance and functions within the parameters of one who is a servant. We serve the Lord.

7/12/04    Proverbs 3:11
My son, do not reject the discipline of the LORD Or loathe His reproof,
A Christian must learn to listen to the Father. When we listen we never get off course. Yes we will suffer the slings and arrows of fate but we will not be defeated nor will we go down the wrong road in life. The sooner we hear what the Lord is telling us to do and then do it the sooner the chaos in our lives will stop.

7/13/04    Proverbs 6:23
For the commandment is a lamp and the teaching is light; And reproofs for discipline are the way of life

When we walk with the Lord we will be walking in the light. Our hearts will not fool us nor will our feet get us on the wrong path. If you find yourself in the wrong place doing wrong things stop where you are and turn to the Lord. Read His Word, ask His advice and do what the Lord says. You will find that the return will be quick and your soul will rejoice.

7/14/04    Revelation 3:18
I advise you to buy gold from me – gold that has been purified by fire. Then you will be rich. And also buy white garments so you will not be shamed by your nakedness. And buy ointment for your eyes so you will be able to see.

The Lord wants to make us rich in a Godly lifestyle. We can have His peace, comfort, presence and power. When we lean on Him, seek to know Him and surrender our will to His we will have these things. A Christian life is a life that is filled with and directed by the Lord Jesus Christ.

7/15/04 Proverbs 12:1
Whoever loves discipline loves knowledge, But he who hates reproof is stupid.

Pride separates us from the Lord. None of us ever know enough to be beyond correction. I must humble myself and maintain a teachable attitude. If I do this I will grow in my ability to serve the Lord Jesus and my ability to care for others. A willing spirit and humble heart are two elements of spiritual growth.

7/16/04 Proverbs 13:1
A wise son {accepts his} father’s discipline, But a scoffer does not listen to rebuke.

A know it all knows nothing. The tragedy of life is to think that you can do what you like and not suffer the consequences. My prayer is that the Lord will help me to listen to those He sends my way. A good friend will tell you when you are messing up. Listen and accept good advice. We were created to work together. Isolation leaves us open to the great deceiver.

7/17/04 Proverbs 13:18
Poverty and shame {will come} to him who neglects discipline, But he who regards reproof will be honored.

Pride is a destructive task master. It blinds ones eyes to the truth and causes spiritual blindness. Be careful how you live. Pay attention to what your friends say. Pride slips in so quietly and strikes so quickly that many good people are led astray. Many otherwise good works have been destroyed by pride. Sin always gets the upper hand in the life of a person filled with pride.

7/18/04 Proverbs 15:5
A fool rejects his father’s discipline, But he who regards reproof is sensible.

It is right to listen to the advice and counsel of wise friends. It is especially important to learn to listen to the Father. The Lord is quick to show us the right way and always has our best interest at heart. Remember we are servants who are about our master’s business.

7/19/04 1 Corinthians 9:27
but I discipline my body and make it my slave, so that, after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified.

Spiritual discipline applies to everyone. If the Lord has given you a special gift, it comes with additional responsibilities. We are always servants. A highly prized and recognized gift requires that we spend even more time disciplining our lives and our lifestyles. Each one of us is responsible for the way we live.
7/20/04 1 Timothy 4:7
But have nothing to do with worldly fables fit only for old women. On the other hand, discipline yourself for the purpose of godliness;

Life will try to sidetrack you as you serve the Lord. Daily we are to get before the Father for guidance and instruction. When we do not spend time with the Father we quickly fall into various traps. Sin is a deceiver. Be careful how you live each day.

7/21/04 Philippians 4:11-13
Not that I was ever in need, for I have learned how to get along happily whether I have much or little. I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little. For I can do everything with the help of Christ who gives me the strength I need.

Each one of us is responsible to make right choices. If we look at what we don’t have we will often give the enemy an opportunity to accuse us of failure or worthlessness or any other deprecating value that he can hurl. Remember, you are beloved of the Lord. Your relationship with the Father is based on the work Jesus did. Christ commends us to the Father not our accomplishments.

7/22/04 1 Timothy 4:8
for bodily discipline is only of little profit, but godliness is profitable for all things, since it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come.

Spend time with the Lord. Spend time with Jesus everyday. The better you get to know Jesus the more equipped you will be to deal with your life. All spiritual power in the life of a Christian comes from the Lord Jesus Christ.

7/23/04 2 Timothy 1:7
For God has not given us a spirit of timidity, but of power and love and discipline.

When Jesus is in control of our life we are able to discipline our lives. Too many Christians are hanging on to hidden sin in their lives and Jesus is not in control. Sin destroys our spiritual power and as long as we continue in sin we will have absolutely no power. Give the hidden sin in your life to Christ. He will forgive your sin and clean up your life.

7/24/04 Hebrews 12:5
and you have forgotten the exhortation which is addressed to you as sons, “My son, do not regard lightly the discipline of the Lord, nor faint when you are reproved by Him;

The Lord will discipline His children. There is only so far that you can go from the Father before He responds with a disciplining hand. His discipline is designed to wake you up and call you out of your sin. Respond in repentance when the Father disciplines. If you do you will walk in victory.

7/25/04 Hebrews 12:7-8
It is for discipline that you endure; God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom his father does not discipline?   But if you are without discipline, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate children and not sons.

Sin is so prevalent in this world. No matter how hard we struggle we wind up sinning. The Father disciplines us so that we will not fall by the wayside. Rejoice in discipline. Let the Father’s discipline be a stepping stone for you to walk closer to Him.

7/26/04 Hebrews 12:11
All discipline for the moment seems not to be joyful, but sorrowful; yet to those who have been trained by it, afterwards it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness.

The agony of physical preparation in sports continues at every level of participation. You and I will agonize in our spiritual growth. Some days will be tougher than others. My joy is through the recognition of His presence and concern in the midst of the discipline process. The Lord is indeed with me.
7/27/04 Revelation 3:19
‘Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline; therefore be zealous and repent.

Discipline is the irrefutable proof of the Father’s concern for me. I feel His answers and experience His work in the physical realm. His presence takes me to His throne room where I bow before Him and ask for forgiveness and guidance. Wisdom, mercy and grace come from this audience with my Father. He loves me.

7/28/04 Isaiah 38:16
Lord, your discipline is good, for it leads to life and health. You have restored my health and have allowed me to live!
The Lord Jesus will not leave us to our own devices. In the midst of our wandering He will intervene. His love will work in us and on us to accomplish His desired goal. The Lord seeks to have a relationship with us and He is committed to outfitting us to spend time with Him.

7/29/04 1 John 3:15
Anyone who hates another Christian is really a murderer at heart. And you know that murderers don’t have eternal life within them.
Hate is something the world does. It is a sin. It separates us from usefulness and will often require the intervention of the Lord Jesus to cure. If you discover that you hate someone immediately go to the Lord and confess your feelings. Ask the Lord to change your hate to forgiveness. He will.
7/30/04 1 Timothy 1:5
The purpose of my instruction is that all the Christians there would be filled with love that comes from a pure heart, a clear conscience, and sincere faith.
Love is something we do. It isn’t a thought or a warm fuzzy idea. Christ like love comes from a life that is devoted to Christ. When we are full of Jesus we will care for others the way that Jesus cares for us. Christ is our role model.

7/31/04 Colossians 4:2
Devote yourselves to prayer with an alert mind and a thankful heart.
Prayer takes time. Our personal interest will always seek to sidetrack us. Prayer will not happen without discipline and commitment. Everything will attempt to divert us from focused prayer. A lifestyle that includes devotion to prayer is what close friends of Jesus do.

June 2004

6/01/04 Genesis 3:16
Then he said to the woman, “You will bear children with intense pain and suffering. And though your desire will be for your husband, he will be your master.”

You and I face conflict everyday. It is important for our survival and growth as a child of God that we give the Lord our attention during times of conflict. I cannot see the future but I can talk with the Lord. Claiming His promise to always be with me I can know that He hears me. As I walk through conflict the Lord will draw me closer to Him if I will let Him. My moment by moment obedience opens the door to a closer relationship with Christ.


6/02/04 Genesis 41:52
Joseph named his second son Ephraim, for he said, “God has made me fruitful in this land of my suffering.”

Growth and prosperity often come during times of significant difficulty. As Paul noted I am to give thanks in all things. The Lord is on your side and is seeking to bless you. Listen to Jesus and obey his Word. He will not leave you in the midst of your crisis.


6/03/04 Exodus 3:7
Then the LORD told him, “You can be sure I have seen the misery of my people in Egypt. I have heard their cries for deliverance from their harsh slave drivers. Yes, I am aware of their suffering.

Suffering is a difficult subject for Christians just as it was for Job. The truth is that we do not know what tomorrow holds. Until we get there we don’t know how the journey will develop. Life is full of ups and downs but the Lord is always the same. Jesus is our closest friend. Tell Him of your love right now. He will listen and you will be blessed.


6/04/04 Numbers 14:34
“‘Because the men who explored the land were there for forty days, you must wander in the wilderness for forty years – a year for each day, suffering the consequences of your sins. You will discover what it is like to have me for an enemy.’

Have you ever felt alone? We do that to ourselves. Somehow life gets off-balance and one day we wake up feeling alone. Be assured that you aren’t. Jesus will not leave you. He will stand by you through today’s conflict or difficulty. Ask the Lord to speak to your heart a word of encouragement. He will.
6/05/04 Deuteronomy 16:3
Eat it with bread made without yeast. For seven days eat only bread made without yeast, as you did when you escaped from Egypt in such a hurry. Eat this bread – the bread of suffering – so that you will remember the day you departed from Egypt as long as you live.

My suffering has drawn me closer to Christ. I have been encouraged by Him at the point of my greatest need. Feeling the touch of God’s hand in the midst of a great crisis is an experience that you will never forget. Today is calm. Tomorrow may be chaotic. Jesus is with me through both.

6/06/04 Judges 2:18
Whenever the LORD placed a judge over Israel, he was with that judge and rescued the people from their enemies throughout the judge’s lifetime. For the LORD took pity on his people, who were burdened by oppression and suffering.

I do not understand suffering. I do not have an eternal viewpoint nor do I know all that I would need to know to understand suffering. I do know Jesus. I do know that He suffered and died for me. I believe that He loves me. As I live my life day by day that knowledge is adequate to give me strength to face the day. Knowing about Jesus doesn’t bring power for living. Knowing Jesus is the key to living an abundant life.

6/07/04 2Kings 14:26
For the LORD saw the bitter suffering of everyone in Israel, and how they had absolutely no one to help them.

Our pain does not escape the Lord’s attention. I am living my life as an object of the love and activity of God. Christ in me gives me access to all of the resources of God. I am His child and have a right to call upon Him in time of need. He will answer and He will help.
6/08/04 Psalm 22:24
For he has not ignored the suffering of the needy. He has not turned and walked away. He has listened to their cries for help.

Complete knowledge would be a great thing. I don’t have complete knowledge about what goes on in the world. God does. As a result of His complete knowledge He came to this world so that I might be saved. His salvation brings me into a complete relationship with Him. Life in Christ is a complete life.
6/09/04 Psalm 34:6
I cried out to the LORD in my suffering, and he heard me. He set me free from all my fears.

Suffering’s goal is to destroy me. Jesus stands with me. He will not allow me to be destroyed. I do not have to fear that which can only destroy the body. Christ is my Savior from destruction and to an eternal relationship with the Lord. In Christ I can live a courageous life.
6/10/04 Psalm 69:29
I am suffering and in pain. Rescue me, O God, by your saving power.

Short prayers can have powerful results. If I know that the Lord will rescue me, a prayer of help is simply a statement of fact. I don’t know what the Lord will do or how He will do it but He will. He has promised me that He would help me. His promises are always true.

6/11/04 Revelation 2:9
“I know about your suffering and your poverty – but you are rich! I know the slander of those opposing you. They say they are Jews, but they really aren’t because theirs is a synagogue of Satan.

Our steps are guided by the Lord Jesus. One thing I can depend on is His love for me. When I walk through the valley of the shadow of death I know that Jesus will be right beside me. He will not let me be destroyed.

6/12/04 Revelation 1:9
I am John, your brother. In Jesus we are partners in suffering and in the Kingdom and in patient endurance. I was exiled to the island of Patmos for preaching the word of God and speaking about Jesus.

In this world we will suffer. The tragedy is that the lost suffer even more. You and I are called to proclaim Christ as Lord by the way we live and the things we say. Jesus is Lord and He will stand with us as we endure. Rejoice, Jesus is Lord.
6/13/04 1Peter 5:9
Take a firm stand against him, and be strong in your faith. Remember that your Christian brothers and sisters all over the world are going through the same kind of suffering you are.
Growing and becoming more like Jesus is our goal. As we grow in Christ likeness we will become an affront to the world. Our faith in the Lord will change the way we see our lives. We are not alone and this is not the end. There is joy in our journey as we serve a risen Savior.

6/14/04 1Peter 4:19
So if you are suffering according to God’s will, keep on doing what is right, and trust yourself to the God who made you, for he will never fail you.

I am never glad when I go through times of suffering. It is a complex human experience. I am glad when I get through suffering and see the work it has done in my life. As long as I focus on Jesus and not the suffering I will come through it well.

6/15/04 1Peter 4:13
Instead, be very glad – because these trials will make you partners with Christ in his suffering, and afterward you will have the wonderful joy of sharing his glory when it is displayed to all the world.

I love Jesus. I want to know Him more and more. As I develop an abiding awareness of Jesus in my life, the trials and tribulations I face become part of the work that I do. I know that the Lord loves me and I know that Jesus is with me. His presence equips me to stand firm wherever I experience life.

6/16/04 1Peter 2:21
This suffering is all part of what God has called you to. Christ, who suffered for you, is your example. Follow in his steps.

Our life is hidden with Christ in God. This is a promise that we can base our lives on. The world can cause me pain but it cannot destroy me. I belong to the Lord Jesus and in Him I can live and move and breathe.

6/17/04 1Peter 1:11
They wondered what the Spirit of Christ within them was talking about when he told them in advance about Christ’s suffering and his great glory afterward. They wondered when and to whom all this would happen.

One day I will see Jesus face to face. When the fires of persecution, tribulation or just pain are roaring I stop and think about what that day will be like. On that day of translation I will move from this life to life with Jesus. My eternal life will be transformed from this physical world to that spiritual realm where everything is perfect. Jesus is Lord of my life.

6/18/04 James 5:13
Are any among you suffering? They should keep on praying about it. And those who have reason to be thankful should continually sing praises to the Lord.

The Lord is with me. He guides me on my way. As I walk with Him my heart must learn to praise Him in all things. When I am suffering, I am to focus on Jesus. When I am celebrating, I am to focus on Jesus.

6/19/04 James 5:11
We give great honor to those who endure under suffering. Job is an example of a man who endured patiently. From his experience we see how the Lord’s plan finally ended in good, for he is full of tenderness and mercy.

Suffering often does not provide answers. We may never know the reason or the results. But we do know Jesus. He is the great comforter. In Christ we have peace with God. Through Christ we have strength for living. With Christ we cannot be defeated.

6/20/04 James 5:10
For examples of patience in suffering, dear brothers and sisters, look at the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord.

Evil hates good. If you are serving the Lord and are suffering don’t be surprised. Use suffering as a reminder to walk more closely with the Lord. Change your daily routine to spend more time with Jesus. Get into the Word of God and claim His promises. There is much work to do. There is a great need for more prayer warriors. Fight the good fight. Be faithful with your time.

6/21/04 Hebrews 10:33
Sometimes you were exposed to public ridicule and were beaten, and sometimes you helped others who were suffering the same things.

This is the normal Christian life. Care for others and hold on when you are undergoing suffering. Jesus has not forgotten you. The Lord has not misplaced the plan for your life. You are valuable to Jesus and He will not let you suffer alone. Jesus will stand with you and comfort you as you experience suffering.

6/22/04 Hebrews 10:32
Don’t ever forget those early days when you first learned about Christ. Remember how you remained faithful even though it meant terrible suffering.

Remember the miracles. Remember His touch. Remember how grateful you were that your life had changed. The grind of daily living sometimes robs us of our joy. Stop where you are suffering and ask the Lord to put the joy of your salvation back into your heart. Reclaim your intimate relationship with the Lord Jesus. When our eyes are focused on Jesus we will not stumble.

6/23/04 Hebrews 2:18
Since he himself has gone through suffering and temptation, he is able to help us when we are being tempted.

Everyone experiences temptation. Only a few choose to let the power of God deal with the attacks of the world. You cannot overcome the world. Jesus overcame the world and His power in you will enable you to live a victorious Christian life.

6/24/04 Hebrews 2:10
And it was only right that God – who made everything and for whom everything was made – should bring his many children into glory. Through the suffering of Jesus, God made him a perfect leader, one fit to bring them into their salvation.

It all begins with Jesus. Everything we need to become a child of God and to be a child of God resides in the Lord Jesus Christ. When I fail I still have a relationship with the Father through Jesus. When I succeed I still have a relationship with the Father through Jesus. Jesus is God’s everything.

6/25/04 2Timothy 4:5
But you should keep a clear mind in every situation. Don’t be afraid of suffering for the Lord. Work at bringing others to Christ. Complete the ministry God has given you.

Be what the Lord called you to be. If you suffer Christ will comfort you. If you fail the Lord will help you to learn and grow. If you succeed the Lord will guide you to the next step. As long as we keep our eyes on Jesus we will lead a profitable Christian life.

6/26/04 2Timothy 3:11
You know how much persecution and suffering I have endured. You know all about how I was persecuted in Antioch, Iconium, and Lystra – but the Lord delivered me from all of it.

You are safe in Jesus Christ. This world cannot destroy you. You may lose everything here but you will not lose the most important thing-eternal life. You have an eternal relationship with the Lord God through His son Jesus Christ.

6/27/04 2Timothy 2:9
And because I preach this Good News, I am suffering and have been chained like a criminal. But the word of God cannot be chained.

The Lord will not lose. You will not be destroyed. Focus your life and heart on Jesus. Let all that you do reflect His love and life and you will be free. Real freedom is found in absolute commitment to Jesus. Serve the Lord. Live you life. Rejoice, Jesus is Lord.

6/28/04 2Timothy 2:3
Endure suffering along with me, as a good soldier of Christ Jesus.

If you love Jesus you will suffer. This world cannot stand His name or His presence. If you are filled with Christ the world will seek to destroy you. The enemy is like a roaring lion seeking whom he might destroy. Stand fast, suffer in service and live faithfully. When you do this you will defeat the world.

6/29/04 2Timothy 1:12
And that is why I am suffering here in prison. But I am not ashamed of it, for I know the one in whom I trust, and I am sure that he is able to guard what I have entrusted to him until the day of his return.

Serve Jesus with confidence. Know that there will be difficult days. Experience the living presence of the Lord Jesus as you seek to know Him more. Walk with Christ and talk with Him about everything you face in your life. Remember when Jesus aggressively deals with the obstacles you face. Be confident that the Lord will not forget you.

6/30/04 2Thessalonians 1:5
But God will use this persecution to show his justice. For he will make you worthy of his Kingdom, for which you are suffering,

Suffering brings us closer to the Lord. Suffering equips us to grow in faith. Suffering is necessary for us to be equipped to conquer the world. If you are seeking to deal with the sin in your life and are actively serving Jesus you will suffer. Have faith in the Lord for His deliverance because Jesus is already victorious over the world.

May 2004

5/01/04 Psalm 32:1
Oh, what joy for those whose rebellion is forgiven, whose sin is put out of sight!

Sin colors the way we look at life. Sin demands that we put self first. Sin enslaves the heart so that we only see the world through the filter of evil. Sin destroys society, murders babies and all the other hot topic issues in today’s society that are on the surface illogical. Sin is evil beyond our ability to comprehend. When our sin is forgiven, there is a tremendous weight lifted off of our heart and lives.
5/02/04 Psalm 32:2
Yes, what joy for those whose record the LORD has cleared of sin, whose lives are lived in complete honesty!

Jesus’ death and resurrection were required for my forgiveness. Sin is horrible and despicable. Sin is destructive to my relationship with the Father. Jesus forgives my sin. My daily time with Jesus is critical for me to live close to the Lord.
5/03/04 Psalm 32:11
So rejoice in the LORD and be glad, all you who obey him! Shout for joy, all you whose hearts are pure!

Forgiveness is a key for a growing relationship with the Lord. Obedience is necessary. I am called to obey the Lord. Obedience is more important to God than my sacrifice. Lord help me to obey You.

5/04/04 Psalm 33:1
Let the godly sing with joy to the LORD, for it is fitting to praise him.

Praise is a heart thing. The Lord lives in my heart. He knows what I am thinking. Genuine praise for the Lord begins in me. It starts with obedience, continues through a daily relationship and is evidenced by the way I live my life. Offering up praise to the Lord is the result of a heart filled with a relationship with the Lord. When Jesus is on my heart His praises will be on my lips!
5/05/04 Psalm 33:12
What joy for the nation whose God is the LORD, whose people he has chosen for his own.

Choosing Jesus is my responsibility. When I choose Christ the Lord chooses me. Tragically, freedom means that some will not choose the Lord as their savior. Pray for the lost. Live for the Lord.
5/06/04 Psalm 34:5
Those who look to him for help will be radiant with joy; no shadow of shame will darken their faces.

Everything I do goes before the Lord. Those people that don’t pester the Lord with the small things in their lives don’t get answers for the big things. Jesus is Lord of all things.

5/07/04 Psalm 35:27
But give great joy to those who have stood with me in my defense. Let them continually say, “Great is the LORD, who enjoys helping his servant.”

You and I can have joy. Our relationship with the Lord will place joy in our hearts. We can also pray for those we love and those we know to have joy. Joy is the inner confidence we have that the Lord is effective in our lives.
5/08/04 Psalm 40:8
I take joy in doing your will, my God, for your law is written on my heart.”

I study the Word of God so that I might gain wisdom in how to live like Jesus. The Word guides me each day. Jesus speaks to me through His Word. Living my life for Jesus will result in a life that is under the authority of the Lord. When I know that the Lord is in control the result is great joy! Joy is part of the Christian lifestyle.
5/09/04 Psalm 40:16
But may all who search for you be filled with joy and gladness. May those who love your salvation repeatedly shout, “The LORD is great!”

Jesus will change your life. Commit yourself to serving Jesus and your life will change. You will become a person that you like and respect. People around you will become those that you love and enjoy being with. Real joy is a product of your relationship with the Lord.
5/10/04 Psalm 43:4
There I will go to the altar of God, to God – the source of all my joy. I will praise you with my harp, O God, my God!

When I go to the Lord I am spending time with joy. The Lord loves me and has my best good in His heart. It is pure joy to know that no matter what happens I have an eternal relationship with the Lord.
5/11/04 Psalm 45:7
You love what is right and hate what is wrong. Therefore God, your God, has anointed you, pouring out the oil of joy on you more than on anyone else.

The more I become like Jesus the greater joy I will experience in my life. The things I think, the things I do will produce joy because my heart is serving and focused on the Father.
5/12/04 Psalm 51:12
Restore to me again the joy of your salvation, and make me willing to obey you.

I want to make sure that I am living right. I want to make sure that I am not habitually sinning. The Father will give me His joy as I spend time with Him and put what He says into action in my daily life. When I am with Jesus I will have joy.

5/13/04 Psalm 68:3
But let the godly rejoice. Let them be glad in God’s presence. Let them be filled with joy.

When I am in the presence of the Lord I will have joy. The choices I make each day determine the joy that I will experience that day. Events, activities and accomplishments don’t create joy. A living and growing relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ is the only way to have joy as the foundation of an active life.


5/14/04 Psalm 69:32
The humble will see their God at work and be glad. Let all who seek God’s help live in joy.

God is with me. My faith in Him gives me the spiritual eyes that I need to see Him at work in all areas of my life. The world’s actions are easy to see. The activity of the Lord is discerned in our relationship with Him. Seeing the Lord at work in our lives is His gift to us to encourage us as we serve Him.


5/15/04 Psalm 70:4
But may all who search for you be filled with joy and gladness. May those who love your salvation repeatedly shout, “God is great!”

GIFT Salvation is a gift that comes from the Lord. It is all of Him and fully available for any one of us to claim. We choose the Lord but He has already chosen us. I belong to Jesus because I accepted His gift. I want to know the Lord better each day.


5/16/04 Philippians 4:4
Always be full of joy in the Lord. I say it again – rejoice!

Circumstances do not affect my joy. My joy is rooted and grounded in the eternal Lord. I can be myself and live my life with the full knowledge that I count, my life is valuable and the Lord Jesus Christ will walk every step with me. I belong to Him.


5/17/04 Philippians 1:25
I am convinced of this, so I will continue with you so that you will grow and experience the joy of your faith.

We serve Christ together. It is our responsibility to honor, respect, care for and help each other. Jesus brings us together. Our service together adds strength to what we are doing in the Lord.

5/18/04 Ephesians 3:8
Just think! Though I did nothing to deserve it, and though I am the least deserving Christian there is, I was chosen for this special joy of telling the Gentiles about the endless treasures available to them in Christ.

I am called to share Christ with everyone I meet. This is not difficult. Out of my growing relationship with Christ, the Lord of glory, I am able to talk authoritatively about what the Lord is doing in my life. Evangelism is simply telling. If I don’t have a growing relationship with Jesus there won’t be anything to talk about.


5/19/04 Galatians 5:22-23
But when the Holy Spirit controls our lives, he will produce this kind of fruit in us: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Here there is no conflict with the law.

The Holy Spirit points us to Jesus. He doesn’t serve at our beck and call; He simply guides us to the Lord Jesus. When we come to Jesus we will change. If I am not changing day by day, I am refusing to listen to the Holy Spirit and fellowship with Jesus.


5/20/04 Romans 14:17
For the Kingdom of God is not a matter of what we eat or drink, but of living a life of goodness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.

Jesus is God’s everything. When the Holy Spirit leads us to Christ we have an opportunity to live under His control. If I refuse to spend time with Jesus and refuse to obey Him I will fail as a Christian. There is no Christianity apart from Christ.


5/21/04 Romans 4:8
Yes, what joy for those whose sin is no longer counted against them by the Lord.”

I am free in Jesus. Free from all those past failures. Free from my current mistakes. In Jesus I am free to come to the Father and grow in my relationship with Jesus. Jesus is strong enough to forgive my sin and overcome my sinfulness.


5/22/04 John 17:13
“And now I am coming to you. I have told them many things while I was with them so they would be filled with my joy.

Jesus is alive. He lives in me. He lives in you. Jesus Christ is Lord and Savior of life. When I live with Jesus one day I will walk with Him and talk with Him face to face.


5/23/04 John 16:22
You have sorrow now, but I will see you again; then you will rejoice, and no one can rob you of that joy.

Joy is the result of letting Jesus have control of your life. Everything you do will come under His scrutiny. My faith equips me to do what Jesus says. Obedience is the stairway to a life of growing faith in Jesus and faithful service to Jesus.


5/24/04 John 15:11
I have told you this so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow!

My sin had a death grip on me. I was blind in my sinfulness and the things of God were not interesting. One day I accepted His offer of eternal life in Christ Jesus. My sins were washed away and Jesus came to stay. I now have joy each day.


5/25/04 Luke 19:6
Zacchaeus quickly climbed down and took Jesus to his house in great excitement and joy.

When you come to Jesus you will have joy. Joy in your heart that the world cannot take away. Christ knows what you need and will work in your heart to equip you to deal with the obstacles you face each day. In Christ I can accomplish the plan that the Lord has for my life.


5/26/04 Luke 10:21
Then Jesus was filled with the joy of the Holy Spirit and said, “O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, thank you for hiding the truth from those who think themselves so wise and clever, and for revealing it to the childlike. Yes, Father, it pleased you to do it this way.

Joy is not something you have because of your position or status in the world. Joy is in you because you have become a child of God. You have given your life to Jesus and are alive in Christ for eternity. Jesus is with you and equips you to deal with your life.


5/27/04 Luke 2:34
Then Simeon blessed them, and he said to Mary, “This child will be rejected by many in Israel, and it will be their undoing. But he will be the greatest joy to many others.

The world will never accept Jesus. The very mention of His name causes an immediate reaction of rejection. Jesus loves you. He will be your strength and joy. Ask Christ to lead, guide and direct you each day.


5/28/04 Luke 2:10
but the angel reassured them. “Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I bring you good news of great joy for everyone!

You have good news in Jesus. Jesus loves you. You are no longer at war with the Lord. You have new life in Christ. God has a plan for your life and you are living it. You count and the things you do have eternal value. Good news from the Lord Jesus Christ.


5/29/04 Jeremiah 31:25
For I have given rest to the weary and joy to the sorrowing.”

Life sidetracks us. It beats us down. Jesus equips us to see the truth of life. He is my joy. In Christ I have a growing relationship. The Holy Spirit guides me moment by moment. The weariness of life is replaced by an awareness of the eternal and an invigorating relationship with the Lord. God is in control.


5/30/04 Isaiah 61:10
I am overwhelmed with joy in the LORD my God! For he has dressed me with the clothing of salvation and draped me in a robe of righteousness. I am like a bridegroom in his wedding suit or a bride with her jewels.

The world only values the rich and famous. The poor and ordinary are shoved aside. In Christ you are a child of the Creator. Your value and worth is immeasurable by heaven’s standards. God loves you. The life you are living is a life that is precious to the Father. Christ died for you.


5/31/04 Isaiah 61:3
To all who mourn in Israel, he will give beauty for ashes, joy instead of mourning, praise instead of despair. For the LORD has planted them like strong and graceful oaks for his own glory.

Jesus is involved in your life. That is one of the Lord’s 7,000 plus promises in the Bible. You are not alone. Your work is important. Every person you meet is valuable. The life you live is a life that Jesus died for. Be encouraged. The Lord is with you.

April 2004

4/1/04 Matthew Mt 27:64
So we request that you seal the tomb until the third day. This will prevent his disciples from coming and stealing his body and then telling everyone he came back to life! If that happens, we’ll be worse off than we were at first.”

The world is always trying to control God. It thinks its power, plans and privileges will have an affect upon the eternal Lord. God’s plans will not be changed. You and I are charged with the responsibility of living in submission to the Lord Jesus. We ask Him for direction and obey His Word. Let us make sure that we are not joining in with the world and trying to control the Lord. It makes for a very disappointing experience.

4/2/04 Mark 6:14
Herod Antipas, the king, soon heard about Jesus, because people everywhere were talking about him. Some were saying, “This must be John the Baptist come back to life again. That is why he can do such miracles.”

The world is always looking for miracles. Not to change their lives but to control their environment. For a Christian, miracles are simply a part of everyday life. Jesus opens our eyes to the activity of the eternal God in our everyday life. The Father wants a relationship with us, gives each one of us equal access and is always looking out for our best interest in love. What a miracle, that the Lord would be interested in me. I cannot control my world but I can surrender to the power of the Lord Jesus Christ. That surrender creates the ultimate miracle of a daily relationship with the Lord. Jesus saved me and wants to spend time with me. Thank you Lord.

4/3/04 Mark 8:35
If you try to keep your life for yourself, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake and for the sake of the Good News, you will find true life.

I am called to imitate Jesus. I am blessed to be able to grow in Christ likeness. God loves people most of all. When I act like Jesus I will serve those that I am with.

4/4/04 Mark 10:17
As he was starting out on a trip, a man came running up to Jesus, knelt down, and asked, “Good Teacher, what should I do to get eternal life?”

Jesus calls me to surrender my life to him. This is not to deprive me of anything. Only Jesus knows the end from the beginning and everything that I will need each day. My surrender to Him first gives me eternal life. My surrender to Him daily gives me wisdom, mercy and grace. There is great joy in a personal relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ.

4/5/04 Mark 10:29-30
And Jesus replied, “I assure you that everyone who has given up house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or property, for my sake and for the Good News, will receive now in return, a hundred times over, houses, brothers, sisters, mothers, children, and property – with persecutions. And in the world to come they will have eternal life.

Jesus tells me that I can trust Him. The physical world is passing away. If I cast my lot with the things of this world my entire life will be a journey of diminishing returns. Everything that I think counts will be destroyed. All the things I trust in are passing away. Jesus focuses on people. Christ teaches me how to care for and serve people. People are eternal. Jesus died for people. I can trust Jesus for my salvation, my life now and the life to come.

4/6/04 Mark 10:45
For even I, the Son of Man, came here not to be served but to serve others, and to give my life as a ransom for many.”

Jesus paid the price for my sin. His sacrifice has paid my debt and is exactly what I needed to be able to have a relationship with Him. I will incur the wrath of the world as I live for Jesus. I have full access to His empowerment of me as I live for Him. I can serve Jesus.

4/7/04 Mark 16:8
The women fled from the tomb, trembling and bewildered, saying nothing to anyone because they were too frightened to talk. Then they reported all these instructions briefly to Peter and his companions. Afterward Jesus himself sent them out from east to west with the sacred and unfailing message of salvation that gives eternal life.

Jesus calms my fears. He is able to deliver me and will. I can live for Jesus and serve Jesus because He is Lord. His Lordship extends to every aspect of my life and reaches from this moment until eternity and beyond.
Jesus loves you.

4/8/04 Luke 4:4
But Jesus told him, “No! The Scriptures say, ‘People need more than bread for their life.’ ”

Life is full of choices. You and I make too many choices without the Lord’s guidance. We must make a living. We must work hard. We must allocate time every day without fail to get the Lord’s guidance for our life. A life poorly lived will create a poor life. Jesus would that we lead an abundant life.

4/9/04 Luke 6:9
Then Jesus said to his critics, “I have a question for you. Is it legal to do good deeds on the Sabbath, or is it a day for doing harm? Is this a day to save life or to destroy it?”

Everyday we choose to serve the Lord or serve self. Self-serving people are always looking for ways to blame someone else for their problems or difficulties. Those that serve the Lord are focused on caring for those around them. God loves people most of all. Life is real and bad things happen. Sometimes we do not nor will not know why. The issue is not why something happened. The issue is will I serve the Lord?

4/10/04 Luke 7:22
Then he told John’s disciples, “Go back to John and tell him what you have seen and heard – the blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cured, the deaf hear, the dead are raised to life, and the Good News is being preached to the poor.

I choose Jesus. I choose to take everything that happens to me to the Lord. I choose to live in spite of the problems. I choose to serve and to sacrifice and while doing both to rejoice. Paul sang in a Roman prison. I will sing as I rejoice in the life that the Lord gave me. My life is merely a shadow and one day in eternity the real me will stand before the Lord of Glory for ever and ever and ever. Jesus is Lord.

4/11/04 Luke 8:14
The thorny ground represents those who hear and accept the message, but all too quickly the message is crowded out by the cares and riches and pleasures of this life. And so they never grow into maturity.

I am responsible for my life. I make the hard choices. I am the one that controls my time. I am the one that chooses to let the grace and wisdom of God pour out on my life or refuse the Lord’s help.

4/12/04 Luke 8:55
And at that moment her life returned, and she immediately stood up! Then Jesus told them to give her something to eat.

Real life is composed of real choices. There is no place in our lives to separate “church” from “daily life.” Jesus is God’s everything and He, the Lord, must be involved in all that we do. Miracles happen when we least expect it. When we are constantly with Jesus, He will constantly be guiding and directing our path. It is on the pathway of surrender and suffering for the Lord that miracles happen.

4/13/04 Luke 9:7
When reports of Jesus’ miracles reached Herod Antipas, he was worried and puzzled because some were saying, “This is John the Baptist come back to life again.”

The world is always self-centered and consistently chooses power, privilege and personal gain. Herod was superstitious and religious. His concern was not for John or the things of God. You and I are called to focus our life on the Lord. We will consistently operate out of weakness, selflessness and sacrifice. The Lord will consistently be glorified and victorious when we let Him have control of us.

4/14/04 Luke 12:25
Can all your worries add a single moment to your life? Of course not!

There are too many bad things to worry about in the world. I can spend my life in worry about things and events that I cannot change or I can give myself to Jesus and let the Lord change me. When I change the Lord will be victorious. All those things the world worries about will be non-issues in my life.

4/15/04 Luke 14:26
“If you want to be my follower you must love me more than your own father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters – yes, more than your own life. Otherwise, you cannot be my disciple.

For the world, love is always an emotion. Those that follow Jesus understand that love is an action. When my life is focused on Jesus and I love Him with all my heart, my actions to all those that I live with, family, friends and strangers will be care and concern. Real love is evidenced by Jesus working through me. In the flesh I will always put self first. In Christ I will put Jesus first. When Jesus is first I will be able to love people.

4/16/04 Luke 15:22-24
“But his father said to the servants, ‘Quick! Bring the finest robe in the house and put it on him. Get a ring for his finger, and sandals for his feet. And kill the calf we have been fattening in the pen. We must celebrate with a feast, for this son of mine was dead and has now returned to life. He was lost, but now he is found.’ So the party began.

Self centered people destroy their lives. Christ focused people identify where they are self-centered and self-serving and change. It takes real change to be able to forgive those that mistreat us. The truth is that when we learn to forgive we learn to live. Life isn’t about what I can get. Real life is about what I can give.

4/17/04 Luke 15:32
We had to celebrate this happy day. For your brother was dead and has come back to life! He was lost, but now he is found!'”

Love never gives up. Love is not a game where we win or lose. Love is a lifestyle that says “I value people.” God loves people most of all and that includes all people. I must be about the business of including people in my life and learn to stop excluding them. People have worth and value. When I forgive and love I am acting like Jesus.

4/18/04 Luke 17:33
Whoever clings to this life will lose it, and whoever loses this life will save it.

Jesus gives me life. When I stop claiming my rights and surrender to the Lord I will gain real life. I will reap what I sow. A life that sows mercy, grace and forgiveness will harvest great rewards in this life and the life to come. Give your life to Jesus and you will inherit an abundant life.

4/19/04 Luke 18:18
Once a religious leader asked Jesus this question: “Good teacher, what should I do to get eternal life?”

Jesus is the way, the truth and the life. I cannot do enough good to claim eternal life. I can surrender my life to Jesus and receive as His gift eternal life. People instinctively strive to know the Creator. Jesus is Lord and will give us that relationship with the Lord that we so desperately desire.

4/20/04 Luke 18:29-30
“Yes,” Jesus replied, “and I assure you, everyone who has given up house or wife or brothers or parents or children, for the sake of the Kingdom of God, will be repaid many times over in this life, as well as receiving eternal life in the world to come.”

Life is simple, solutions are hard. If I choose the Lord I will be able to deal with the great issues of my life that I will face as I journey towards the end of my life. People forget that life is a journey. In the process of this journey I plan today for the unknown events of tomorrow. I don’t know what will happen but I do know the One in charge of all things. He has my best interest at heart. Jesus loves me.

4/21/04 Luke 20:36
And they will never die again. In these respects they are like angels. They are children of God raised up to new life.

When we die in the Lord we will go immediately into His presence. We will be equal to the angels in spirituality, maturity and immortality. We are different from the angels in that we chose Jesus. What joy throughout eternity we will have as children of God. Think about the majesty and glory of the Lord. And we will be there forever. With that in mind, choose today to forgive someone you are holding a grudge against. That person the Holy Spirit has been prodding you to witness to, simply tell them about what Jesus has done for you. Let them know and let them decide.

4/22/04 Luke 21:34
“Watch out! Don’t let me find you living in careless ease and drunkenness, and filled with the worries of this life. Don’t let that day catch you unaware,

When I choose Jesus as my Lord and Savior I choose eternal life. The result of my choice will change my daily lifestyle. If I am the same today that I was before I knew Jesus, then chances are very good that I don’t know Jesus. When we know the Lord we will change.

4/23/04 John 4:36
The harvesters are paid good wages, and the fruit they harvest is people brought to eternal life. What joy awaits both the planter and the harvester alike!

God is in control. He will use me in a way that best fits me. If the Lord uses me to proclaim I can rejoice. If the Lord uses me to experience the harvest I can rejoice. The key is for me to choose to walk with the Lord everyday. Not because the world is blessing me but because the Lord loves me and I love the Lord.

4/24/04 John 5:24
“I assure you, those who listen to my message and believe in God who sent me have eternal life. They will never be condemned for their sins, but they have already passed from death into life.

The most important decision a person will ever make is to choose Jesus as their Lord and Savior. It has eternal consequences. It has current consequences. Choosing Jesus puts me in the Family of God. I am a child of God. My Father is actively involved in my daily life. I am actively seeking to serve the Lord.

4/25/04 John 5:26
The Father has life in himself, and he has granted his Son to have life in himself.

Jesus gives life. It is a life that is joyous and abundant. It is a life that teaches me about the value and worth of every person.

4/26/04 John 5:28-29
Don’t be so surprised! Indeed, the time is coming when all the dead in their graves will hear the voice of God’s Son, and they will rise again. Those who have done good will rise to eternal life, and those who have continued in evil will rise to judgment.

I can choose Jesus as Lord and Savior of my life. Life is short and surprising. The things of the world will overrun us, distract us and abuse us. I may have chosen to put off making that decision. I may not get another chance. Jesus is coming back. Whatever I have chosen when that happens will be my choice. It will be too late to change if I have spent my life committed to the world and ignored the Lord.

4/27/04 John 5:39
“You search the Scriptures because you believe they give you eternal life. But the Scriptures point to me!

Eternal life is in Jesus. It is His gift to us when we choose Him as Lord and Savior. Knowing about Jesus and not accepting Him is fatal. Salvation comes through Christ by faith to me. There are no grandchildren in God’s family.

4/28/04 John 5:40
Yet you refuse to come to me so that I can give you this eternal life.

I came to Jesus because He loved me and offered me something unique, life. The world is blind, uncaring, misdirected, only the strong win, and caught up in destruction. Jesus cares for each and every person created. He would that none be lost. I wanted to be a part of that. Anyone can come to Christ. Jesus gives life.

4/29/04 John 6:27
But you shouldn’t be so concerned about perishable things like food. Spend your energy seeking the eternal life that I, the Son of Man, can give you. For God the Father has sent me for that very purpose.”

Life is a vapor. It disappears rapidly. We have one chance. Time lost is time gone. I choose Jesus. He gives me life.

4/30/04 Mark 7:20
And then he added, “It is the thought-life that defiles you.
I am responsible for what I think. Out of my heart come the things that I am focused on. Time with Jesus is the time that I give Him those bad, evil, misdirected thoughts. When I give them to Jesus He will give me the right kind of things to think about. I have a choice, I can surrender the evil in my heart to Jesus or spend a lifetime of being overrun and misdirected by myself.