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Verse of the Day

Inspirational illustration of Psalm 34:1

Thoughts on Today’s Verse…

One way to keep our life on track and our hearts surrendered to the will and work of God is to praise our glorious LORD continually. Let’s put our praise for God on our lips with song and memorized Scripture. Let’s tell his wonderful and great deeds to our children, grandchildren, and friends. Let’s give him thanks for all that he has done for us. Just as surely as he is with us always (see Ps. 139), let’s praise him always.

My Prayer…

Almighty God and eternal and loving Father, I praise you for your great might and incredible creativity displayed in your creation. I marvel at your vastness and incomprehensible glory revealed in the great expanse of the heavens. Thank you for your power, mercy, faithfulness, and grace demonstrated by your care for your people and the sending of your Son as you promised. You are wonderful. You are awesome. You are majestic. Thank you for loving me. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

 

 

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TODAY’S DAILY PRAYER

$nameBe joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer…Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. Romans 12:12,15, NIV

Lord our God, we thank you for your gospel, the great, good tidings we may carry in our hearts to give us joy in this present time, even though on all sides people are in anguish and agony. We thank you that your gospel fills our hearts with compassion, enabling us to help carry what many have to suffer. Show us our need of you so that we can receive your help. If we must be the first to suffer all kinds of pain and distress, may we do so joyfully because we have been promised blessing in the midst of all the pain. May we continually honor your name, praising you for the good news of your kingdom, for the promise that everything must work together for good through Jesus Christ the Savior. Amen.

 

 

Daily Dig

Caffeine for your conscience

TODAY’S DAILY DIG

BeachnutGod does not condemn us to hell; God wishes all humans to be saved. He will love us to all eternity, but there will exist the possibility that we do not accept the love and do not respond to it. And the refusal to accept love, the refusal to respond to it, that precisely is the meaning of hell. Hell is not a place where God puts us; it is a place where we put ourselves. The doors of hell, insofar as they have locks, have locks on the inside.

Source: “Image and Likeness,” Parabola, Volume 10, Number 1: Wholeness

 

 

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WHERE HAS THE LORD CALLED YOU?

“I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live byfaith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”  Galatians 2:20

Fear of dying is the number one universal fear for human beings. Virtually every fear has a relationship to death and a connection to dying. For example, why are we afraid of flying? The plane may crash and we may die. Here are seven scriptural principles that enable us to conquer our fear of death:

1. God is in control. Read Psalm 91. (Mark 4:35-41; Phil 4:6-7)

2. Focus on fearing God and dying to self. (Acts 5:29; Galatians 2:20)

3. We are strangers and pilgrims on this earth. (Hebrews 10:32 ff)

4. God always brings good from evil. (Genesis 50:20)

5. The enemy can only harm our body, not our soul. (Matthew 10:28)

6. Absent from the body is to be present with the Lord. (2 Corinthians 5:8; 2 Timothy 2:11-12)

7. There is a crown of life for the faithful to death. (Revelation 2:10)

Co-workers had just finished an SSTS seminar on the island of Timor when a young pastor suddenly jumped up and proclaimed before all his colleagues “Now I am ready to die for Jesus!” These were no idle words. Every single pastor attending the seminar was directly or indirectly impacted by the massacres on the island of Ambon. Many of their churches had been burned and several had lost loved ones in the attacks on Christians.

As the meeting concluded, our colleague saw that young pastor making his way towards him. “Your being here has inspired me to go out and share the gospel in other areas,” he announced.

“I am happy to hear that brother. Where has the Lord called you to?” he enquired.  “To Ambon!”

“My brother, are you sure. This is like signing your own death certificate. You know that most Christians are fleeing the massacre and you want to return?”

His response was simple and without pretense. “If I don’t go back to tell the people about Jesus, who will do it? I am willing to give my life for Jesus!”

RESPONSE: Today I will live prepared to die, and die prepared to live!

PRAYER: When I fear you, Lord, I fear nothing else—even death. Today I pray for those who do not fear You and thus fear everything else—especially death.

 

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 October 1

Be strong, all ye people of the land, saith the Lord, and work: for I am with you, saith the Lord of hosts.–HAGGAI ii. 4

Yet the world is Thy field, Thy garden;
On earth art Thou still at home.
When Thou bendest hither Thy hallowing eye,
My narrow work-room seems vast and high,
Its dingy ceiling a rainbow-dome,–
Stand ever thus at my wide-swung door,
And toil will be toil no more.
L. LARCOM.

The situation that has not its duty, its ideal, was never yet occupied by man. Yes, here, in this poor, miserable, hampered, despicable Actual, wherein thou even now standest, here or nowhere is thy Ideal: work it out therefrom; and working, believe, live, be free. Fool! the Ideal is in thyself, the impediment too is in thyself: thy condition is but the stuff thou art to shape that same Ideal out of: what matters whether such stuff be of this sort or that, so the form thou givest it be heroic, be poetic. O thou that pinest in the imprisonment of the Actual, and criest bitterly to the gods for a kingdom wherein to rule and create, know this of a truth: the thing thou seekest is already with thee, “here or nowhere,” couldst thou only see!
T. CARLYLE.

TODAY‘S

Christian Quote

“Everyone wants to change, but change demands desire and discipline before it becomes delightful. There is always the agony of choice before the promise of change. ”
read more » 

– Larry Lea

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Prayer of Surrender
By Dr. James MacDonald

“Now My soul has become troubled; and what shall I say, ‘Father, save me from this hour’? But for this purpose I came to this hour”(John 12:27, NASB).

One of the great hymns we sang two or three times a month in the church where I grew up was the old invitation chorus, “I Surrender All.” But despite all the earnest intentions evoked when you’re with your congregation belting those lyrics from your heart, something’s almost deceptively easy about surrendering our “all” to Jesus. Christians are quick to sign up for the comprehensive, no-holds release of a generic, theoretical “all.” Feels good just saying it. Take it all, God, all of it. I surrender everything to You.

The problem comes when “all” becomes specific. We may be up for surrendering “all” to Him, but perhaps not surrendering . . . this.

· My stuff. How strong of a hold do your possessions have over you? If faced with the loss of something valuable to you, how resistant would you be to living without it?

· My health. How much time do you spend fretting about how long your life is going to last or whether your health is going to hold out? While some of it can obviously be affected by lifestyle choices, many aspects of what’s to come in our medical histories are beyond our control. With how much faith, grace, and gratitude could you surrender to the ordeals of walking through a health scare or trial?

· My family. We generally understand the idea that our spouse, children, and grandchildren belong to God, not to us. But what if His plan for them should conflict with our own desires and expectations for these precious individuals, or for how we wish the dynamics of our relationship to continue?

See? That’s harder . . . when the surrender is specific, when it’s not an abstract all, but a concrete this.

Like when Christ—in the days immediately preceding His arrest, torture, and eventual death on the cross—saw the sun of His suffering begin to rise above the horizon of His thoughts. In seeing it, He could feel the full weight of what His atoning death would cost. No wonder He was “troubled”—even as the Son of God. Yet what did He do with the anguish, anxiety, and horror of the situation?

He surrendered. He surrendered Himself to the Father’s will and purpose. And in doing so, He left us an example, that we might “follow in his steps”(1 Peter 2:21, ESV). When everything inside you is saying you can’t do thisor get through it—“Please, Lord, get me out of this!”—observe the Second Person of the Trinity silhouetted against the God-darkened sky late on a Friday afternoon, and behold what can be accomplished for God’s glory and purpose through a single individual who not only surrenders everything from a distance, but surrenders one specific thing at close range.

Pray:

Lord God, thank You for showing us the ultimate example of what surrender truly is, through the gift of Your Son, and through the surrender of His life for our sins. You’ve called me to surrender my all as well, and You’ve heard me say that’s what I intend to do. Help me put my zeal into practice—even when surrender has a name and a face and a measurable cost. I surrender all, and especially that one thing, trusting in the name of the One who surrendered all for me, Amen.

 

 

October 1

A Covenant He Remembers 
“He hath given meat unto them that fear Him: He will ever be mindful of His Covenant” (Psalm 111:5).

Those who fear God need not fear want. Through all these long years the LORD has always found meat for His own children, whether they have been in the wilderness, or by the brook Cherith, or in captivity, or in the midst of famine. Hitherto the LORD has given us day by day our daily bread, and we doubt not that He will continue to feed us till we want no more. As to the higher and greater blessings of the covenant of grace, He will never cease to supply them as our case demands. He is mindful that He made the covenant and never acts as if He regretted it. He is mindful of it when we provoke Him to destroy us. He is mindful to love us, keep us, and comfort us, even as He engaged to do. He is mindful of every jot and tittle of His engagements, never suffering one of His words to fall to the ground. We are sadly unmindful of our God, but He is graciously mindful of us. He cannot forget His Son who is the surety of the covenant, nor His Holy Spirit who actively carries out the covenant, nor His own honor, which is bound up with the covenant. Hence the foundation of God standeth sure, and no believer shall lose his divine inheritance, which is his by a covenant of salt.

 

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From Devotions for the Beach      

VOLCANIC ACTIVITY

“My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts,” says the Lord.

“And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine.”

–Isaiah 55:8 NLT

We have seen the destruction volcanoes can cause as well as the striking patterns in the landscape after hot lava cools. Did you know, however, that 90 percent of all volcanic activity occurs in the oceans, mostly unseen by the casual beachgoer?

Unfortunately, we can approach relationships with the same kind of blindness as a beachgoer. Our human nature means we are prone to blind spots, particularly when it comes to people we love. A future husband’s free spending habits or seem­ing lack of patience—these may hardly be noticeable to his loving fiancée, but they can later reveal an irresponsibility with finances and a harsh temper. That’s why God must sometimes rescue us from our blind spots.

When our hearts are broken, our natural response is to ask why. Whether an eruption in a romantic relationship or a sour ending with someone we thought was a friend, we must search our own hearts as we ask God where we were blinded. And thank Him for caring and for loving us enough to spare us from even more hurt.

You see, if we are truly seeking God’s will for our lives, a breaking point will occur if a person or situation is not a part of His plan. We may pray, we may cry, we may even scream at Him—His ways are hard for us to figure out—yet His love surpasses our understanding. Years later, you may learn the why and actually feel relief that your plans went awry, but some reasons why God does what He does will not be revealed on this side of heaven. So we must trust that, while we’re currently experiencing the effects of an eruption, God is taking most of the volcanic activity offshore to protect us from something we don’t even see.

Lord, You know my heart is broken, and my pain is very real. My plans did not work out despite my best efforts. I want to trust that You have a better plan for me and that I cannot imagine how wonderful that plan is. I am choosing to be hopeful, and I will stay hopeful, because I know that You are faithful and I know that You see what I don’t. Open my eyes so that I do not miss Your presence as I journey along the way.

©2012 by Thomas Nelson, Inc.

Order your own copy of Devotions for the Beach

 

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Honoring God

Honor GOD with everything you own;
give him the first and the best.
Your barns will burst, your wine vats will brim over. – Proverbs 3:9-10MSG

At times, your life is probably hectic, demanding, and complicated. When the demands of life leave you rushing from place to place with scarcely a moment to spare, you may fail to pause and thank your Creator for the blessings He has bestowed upon you. But that’s a big mistake. Whom will you choose to honor today? If you honor God and place Him at the center of your life, every day is a cause for celebration. But if you fail to honor your Heavenly Father, you’re asking for trouble, and lots of it. So honor God for who He is and for what He has done for you. And don’t just honor Him on Sunday morning. Praise Him all day long, every day, for as long as you live . . . and then for all eternity.

God shows unbridled delight when He sees people acting in ways that honor Him. – Bill Hybels, 100 Days of Prayer

We honor God by asking for great things when they are a part of His promise. We dishonor Him and cheat ourselves when we ask for molehills where He has promised mountains. – Vance Havner

What lessons about honor did you learn from your childhood? Are you living what you learned today? – Dennis Swanberg

Happiness is to be found only in the home where God is loved and honored, where each one loves, and helps, and cares for the others. – St. Theophane Venard

Today’s Prayer

I praise You, Lord, from the depths of my heart, and I give thanks for Your goodness, for Your mercy, and for Your Son. Let me honor You every day of my life through my words and my deeds. Let me honor You, Father, with all that I am. Amen.

 

Passion for Praise: ‘What Joy!’

Sunday, October 1, 2017

Oh, what joy for those whose disobedience is forgiven, whose sin is put out of sight! Yes, what joy for those whose record the LORD has cleared of guilt, whose lives are lived in complete honesty!

The Daily Word of Hope Devotional

Bible Fun Fact: The construction of God”s Temple began 480 years after the Israelites had come out of Egypt (1 Kg 6:1).

The Morning Update

Early in the morning, while it was still dark, he rose up and went out, and departed into a deserted place, and prayed there. Simon and those who were with him searched for him. They found him and told him, ‘Everyone is looking for you.’ Mark 1:35 WEB

Jesus would often withdraw from the noisy crowds to be alone with His Heavenly Father in prayer. It was here that He chose His disciples, refreshed His strength, prepared for the coming day, and got the next mission. It was His morning update.

Jesus’ life was not have a cake walk while here on the earth. He was tested in every way just as we are, and He passed every test (Hebrews 4:15). Jesus earned ‘Worthy is the Lamb’, it was not given to Him. Part of it involved praying hard and regularly.

We often get caught up in the hustle and bustle of the day and slowly start to fall apart under the stress. If we can get alone and spend some time in prayer, those things will heal and begin to fall into place. God will help us take care of it, but we still need to ask.

When you don’t know the answer, He does. When you don’t have the resources, He does. When you feel lost and don’t know what to do next, He does. When no one else on earth cares about you, He does.

No matter how busy you get today, set aside a little time for prayer so that you can refresh your spirit and get your morning update. You build yourself up by praying (Jude 20). We are to pray always and not give up (Luke 18:1). Spending time with God will provide the answer to your questions.

Prayer: Heavenly Father I thank You for all that You do for me. Thank You! Thank You! Thank You! Walk with me and talk with me today. Help me learn to recognize Your voice, and to know when You are leading me, in the name of Jesus Christ I pray.

 

 

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DAILY DEVOTIONAL OCTOBER 1, 2017

Choice Fruits

Choice fruits, new as well as old, which I have laid up for you, O my beloved. Song of Songs 7:13

The spouse desires to give to Jesus all that she produces. Our heart has all kinds of “choice fruits, new as well as old,” and they are reserved for our Beloved. In this rich autumn season of fruitfulness, let us survey our supplies.

We have new fruits. We desire to feel new life, new joy, new gratitude; we wish to make new resolves and carry them out by new endeavors; our heart blossoms with new prayers, and our soul is committing herself to new efforts.

But we also have some old fruits. There is the choice fruit of our first love, and Jesus delights in it. There is our first faith–that simple faith by which, having nothing, we became possessors of everything. There is our joy when we first met the Lord: Let us revive it. We have our old memories of the promises. How faithful has God been! In sickness, how kindly He made our bed! In deep waters, how gently He picked us up! In the flaming furnace, how graciously He delivered us. Old fruits indeed! We have many of them, for His mercies have been more than the hairs of our head. Old sins we must regret, but then we have had repentances that He has given us, by which we have wept our way to the cross and learned the merit of His blood.

We have fruits, this morning, both new and old; but here is the point–they are all laid up for Jesus. Without question the best and most acceptable services are those in which Jesus is the solitary aim of the soul, and His glory is the focus of all our endeavors. Let our many fruits be laid up only for Him; let us display them when He is with us, and not use them to draw attention to ourselves. Jesus, we will turn the key in our garden door, and no one will enter to rob You of one good fruit from the soil that You have watered with Your grace. All that we are and have shall be Yours, Yours alone, O Jesus, our Beloved!

 

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Changing Our Paradigm of Experience
TGIF Today God Is First Volume 1 by Os Hillman
October 01, 2017

“So Moses thought, ‘I will go over and see this strange sight-why the bush does not burn up.'” Exodus 3:3

Have you ever heard someone say, “God doesn’t work that way? He would never do that.” Well, there are times when God chooses to confound the foolish in order to change our paradigm of experience. Moses had never seen a bush that burned but did not burn up. It got his attention and it drew him to God.

When Jesus appeared on the water in the middle of the night during a storm, the disciples exclaimed, “It’s a ghost!” They had never seen a man walk on water. This led to a great miracle-Peter walked on the water, too. When Jesus asked Peter to catch a fish and get the coin from its mouth to pay their taxes, you can imagine what Peter must have thought about those instructions. When Moses got to the Red Sea, he ran out of options. God had an unexpected solution to the Israelites’ problem-He parted the Red Sea to demonstrate His power and allow the people of Israel to cross over to flee the Egyptian army.

Each of these new paradigms was a stepping-stone of an encounter with God so that the individual would experience God in a new way. God used these times to enforce the principle that His ways are not our ways. Whenever we try to predict that God will act in a certain way, He changes the paradigm to keep us from becoming our own little gods.

Have you ever been guilty of judging someone for an experience they’ve had that you’ve never had? Did you dismiss it as extreme or something not of God? God is in the business of changing our paradigm from no personal experiences to God-experiences. However, if you operate on a level of rigid logic, you may never have the privilege of having the God-experiences. Keep your heart free to experience new paradigms with God today.

 

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Well, I wrote a small piece last night and then I was able to sleep…ALL night, peacefully!!  I feel refreshed today……I feel ready to take on anything life may throw at me….Alleluia!!!!

So, I have nothing to write about today……I’ll just wish you all well and I’ll pray for all of you!!

 

God bless you all!!!!

 

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