Just Another Manic Monday……

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TODAY’S DAILY PRAYER

tiny daffodilI will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. Before long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live. On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you. Whoever has my commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves me. He who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love him and show myself to him. John 14:18-21, NIV

Lord our God, dear Father in heaven, we are gathered in your presence through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Reveal to us our Savior Jesus Christ. May the Savior be revealed to us; otherwise in our need we will never come through. Grant that at this late hour for the world we may see him as he is, and through him and through the kingdom that he brings we may be lifted above the troubles of our time. Strengthen our hearts every day, and fill us with joy because you guide everything on earth as in heaven; in the end you will give us the victory that belongs to the kingdom you have founded. May we be comforted through all eternity in this kingdom, a kingdom far greater and more glorious than all the kingdoms of the world. Amen.

 

 

 

Solemnity of the Annunciation of the Lord

Reading 1 Is 7:10-14; 8:10

The LORD spoke to Ahaz, saying:
Ask for a sign from the LORD, your God;
let it be deep as the nether world, or high as the sky!
But Ahaz answered,
“I will not ask! I will not tempt the LORD!”
Then Isaiah said:
Listen, O house of David!
Is it not enough for you to weary people,
must you also weary my God?
Therefore the Lord himself will give you this sign:
the virgin shall be with child, and bear a son,
and shall name him Emmanuel,
which means “God is with us!”

Responsorial Psalm Ps 40:7-8a, 8b-9, 10, 11

R. (8a and 9a) Here I am, Lord; I come to do your will.
Sacrifice or oblation you wished not,
but ears open to obedience you gave me.
Holocausts or sin-offerings you sought not;
then said I, “Behold I come.”
R. Here I am, Lord; I come to do your will.
“In the written scroll it is prescribed for me,
To do your will, O my God, is my delight,
and your law is within my heart!”
R. Here I am, Lord; I come to do your will.
I announced your justice in the vast assembly;
I did not restrain my lips, as you, O LORD, know.
R. Here I am, Lord; I come to do your will.
Your justice I kept not hid within my heart;
your faithfulness and your salvation I have spoken of;
I have made no secret of your kindness and your truth
in the vast assembly.
R. Here I am, Lord; I come to do your will.

Reading 2 Heb 10:4-10

Brothers and sisters:
It is impossible that the blood of bulls and goats
take away sins.
For this reason, when Christ came into the world, he said:

“Sacrifice and offering you did not desire,
but a body you prepared for me;
in holocausts and sin offerings you took no delight.
Then I said, ‘As is written of me in the scroll,
behold, I come to do your will, O God.'”

First he says, “Sacrifices and offerings,
holocausts and sin offerings,
you neither desired nor delighted in.”
These are offered according to the law.
Then he says, “Behold, I come to do your will.”
He takes away the first to establish the second.
By this “will,” we have been consecrated
through the offering of the Body of Jesus Christ once for all.

Alleluia Jn 1:14ab

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
The Word of God became flesh and made his dwelling among us;
and we saw his glory.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel Lk 1:26-38

The angel Gabriel was sent from God
to a town of Galilee called Nazareth,
to a virgin betrothed to a man named Joseph,
of the house of David,
and the virgin’s name was Mary.
And coming to her, he said,
“Hail, full of grace! The Lord is with you.”
But she was greatly troubled at what was said
and pondered what sort of greeting this might be.
Then the angel said to her,
“Do not be afraid, Mary,
for you have found favor with God.
Behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son,
and you shall name him Jesus.
He will be great and will be called Son of the Most High,
and the Lord God will give him the throne of David his father,
and he will rule over the house of Jacob forever,
and of his Kingdom there will be no end.”
But Mary said to the angel,
“How can this be,
since I have no relations with a man?”
And the angel said to her in reply,
“The Holy Spirit will come upon you,
and the power of the Most High will overshadow you.
Therefore the child to be born
will be called holy, the Son of God.
And behold, Elizabeth, your relative,
has also conceived a son in her old age,
and this is the sixth month for her who was called barren;
for nothing will be impossible for God.”
Mary said, “Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord.
May it be done to me according to your word.”
Then the angel departed from her.

– – –
Lectionary for Mass for Use in the Dioceses of the United States, second typical edition, Copyright © 2001, 1998, 1997, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine; Psalm refrain © 1968, 1981, 1997, International Committee on English in the Liturgy, Inc. All rights reserved. Neither this work nor any part of it may be reproduced, distributed, performed or displayed in any medium, including electronic or digital, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

Reading 1 Acts 4:32-35

The community of believers was of one heart and mind,
and no one claimed that any of his possessions was his own,
but they had everything in common.
With great power the apostles bore witness
to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus,
and great favor was accorded them all.
There was no needy person among them,
for those who owned property or houses would sell them,
bring the proceeds of the sale,
and put them at the feet of the apostles,
and they were distributed to each according to need.

Responsorial Psalm Ps 118:2-4, 13-15, 22-24

R. (1) Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good, his love is everlasting.
or:
R. Alleluia.
Let the house of Israel say,
“His mercy endures forever.”
Let the house of Aaron say,
“His mercy endures forever.”
Let those who fear the LORD say,
“His mercy endures forever.”
R. Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good, his love is everlasting.
or:
R. Alleluia.
I was hard pressed and was falling,
but the LORD helped me.
My strength and my courage is the LORD,
and he has been my savior.
The joyful shout of victory
in the tents of the just:
R. Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good, his love is everlasting.
or:
R. Alleluia.
The stone which the builders rejected
has become the cornerstone.
By the LORD has this been done;
it is wonderful in our eyes.
This is the day the LORD has made;
let us be glad and rejoice in it.
R. Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good, his love is everlasting.
or:
R. Alleluia.

Reading 2 1 Jn 5:1-6

Beloved:
Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ is begotten by God,
and everyone who loves the Father
loves also the one begotten by him.
In this way we know that we love the children of God
when we love God and obey his commandments.
For the love of God is this,
that we keep his commandments.
And his commandments are not burdensome,
for whoever is begotten by God conquers the world.
And the victory that conquers the world is our faith.
Who indeed is the victor over the world
but the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?

This is the one who came through water and blood, Jesus Christ,
not by water alone, but by water and blood.
The Spirit is the one that testifies,
and the Spirit is truth.

Alleluia Jn 20:29

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
You believe in me, Thomas, because you have seen me, says the Lord;
Blessed are those who have not seen me, but still believe!
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel Jn 20:19-31

On the evening of that first day of the week,
when the doors were locked, where the disciples were,
for fear of the Jews,
Jesus came and stood in their midst
and said to them, “Peace be with you.”
When he had said this, he showed them his hands and his side.
The disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord.
Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you.
As the Father has sent me, so I send you.”
And when he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them,
“Receive the Holy Spirit.
Whose sins you forgive are forgiven them,
and whose sins you retain are retained.”

Thomas, called Didymus, one of the Twelve,
was not with them when Jesus came.
So the other disciples said to him, “We have seen the Lord.”
But he said to them,
“Unless I see the mark of the nails in his hands
and put my finger into the nailmarks
and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.”

Now a week later his disciples were again inside
and Thomas was with them.
Jesus came, although the doors were locked,
and stood in their midst and said, “Peace be with you.”
Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here and see my hands,
and bring your hand and put it into my side,
and do not be unbelieving, but believe.”
Thomas answered and said to him, “My Lord and my God!”
Jesus said to him, “Have you come to believe because you have seen me?
Blessed are those who have not seen and have believed.”

Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of his disciples
that are not written in this book.
But these are written that you may come to believe
that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God,
and that through this belief you may have life in his name.

– – –
Lectionary for Mass for Use in the Dioceses of the United States, second typical edition, Copyright © 2001, 1998, 1997, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine; Psalm refrain © 1968, 1981, 1997, International Committee on English in the Liturgy, Inc. All rights reserved. Neither this work nor any part of it may be reproduced, distributed, performed or displayed in any medium, including electronic or digital, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

 

 

Verse of the Day

for Monday, April 9, 2018

Inspirational illustration of Hebrews 1:3

Thoughts on Today’s Verse…

Jesus was God with us. No imitation, knock off, or clone, he was God with us. To this day, he sustains all creation with his word — so much for “Mother Nature.” But now God-with-us has paid for our sins and is not just God-with-us, but he is also God-for-us at the Father’s side.

My Prayer…

Precious Lord, as you have so many times in the past, you take these humble human words and bring them to the Father as my friend and brother. Thank you for your sacrifice for my sins. Thank you for your sustaining presence in our universe. Thank you for your daily intercession. Thank you for being God-for-me at the Father’s side. To the glorious, majestic and holy God, who sent Jesus as Savior, be glory, honor, and adoration forever and ever. Amen.

 

 

 

christiancrier

What Do You Say To A Grieving Friend Or Family Member?

Everyone that I know has endured a time of grief, so what do you say to a grieving friend when they’ve experienced a great loss in their life?

Life and Death

Dying is part of living. All things that are born will live and then die, and no one knows exactly when that end will come in most cases. Being human is 100% fatal. Death comes to all (unless Christ appears first), and at best, we can only guess, so what happens when someone is taken away by tragedy or disease, and suddenly you’re left speechless before your friend or family member? What do you say to someone who’s lost a loved one? Sometimes the best thing to say is nothing at all, only telling them you’re sorry for their loss, so if you have a friend or family member who’s going through a time of grief right now, please share some of these Bible verses with them in order to give them some comfort. One of the most powerful and comforting verses to share with someone is Revelation 21:3-4 where the Apostle John wrote, “I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.” That means death will be vanquished forever, and when the saint of God dies, they will live again, according to Jesus’ own promise to all who believe (John 11:25-26).

Comforting Others

Decades ago when I lost my older brother, I remembered David’s solace in Psalm 34:18 where he writes, “The LORD is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.” Surely none can comfort the crushed like God and heal the brokenhearted like the Lord, so Paul praises God and says, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God” (2 Cor 1:3-4). In both Testaments, the Lord proclaims that “He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds” (Psalm 147:3). The death of loved one is a precious thing to us, and the pain penetrates deep into our soul, yet the Lord says, “Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his saints” (Psalm 116:15).

Death’s Doorway

Job seemed clear in understanding that the Lord will redeem his soul from the pit, saying, “For I know that my Redeemer lives, and at the last he will stand upon the earth. And after my skin has been thus destroyed, yet in my flesh I shall see God” (Job 19:25-26). John knows that what we are like now will not be how we will be after death or after Christ’s return. The Bible says, “we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is” (1 John 3:2). We also know that believer’s “will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads” (Rev 22:4), so if the person who has passed away in the faith, remember that they are presently with the Lord. That means their suffering and pain are gone. The psalmist also understood that someday, “I shall behold your face in righteousness; when I awake, I shall be satisfied with your likeness” (Psalm 17:15).

Deliverance

Death comes to all, and it’s appointed for us all to die, and after this comes the judgment (Heb 9:27), but the judgment for believer’s sins was placed upon Christ, so even though the Apostle Paul wrote, “Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death,” he answered his own question: “Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord” (Rom 7:24), so “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me” (Psalm 23:4). To all who trust in Christ, death is only a shadow and not the reality since we know that we’ll live again and be in the presence of God after death. The moment we die, or are away from this body, we are present with the Lord (2 Cor 5:8). That should comfort all who have lost loved ones. I doubt very seriously if they’d want to come back, and besides, they can’t come back…but you can go to them if you’ve repented and trusted in Christ.

Conclusion

Jesus tells us, “Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted” (Matt 5:4), so “My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever” (Psalm 73:26). Paul was “sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Rom 8:38-39). Nothing means nothing and no one! If these Bible verses about grief have been of some comfort to you, why not bookmark them, and you can also share them with someone else who is grieving right now because we don’t grieve like the world does who have no hope outside of Christ. We know that they shall live again, and so shall we, so it’s not burial ground, but resurrection ground, and it’s not goodbye, but see you later, h0wever, if you haven’t trusted in Christ, it is goodbye, and it is forever!

Article by Jack Wellman

Jack Wellman is a pastor, author, and a writer at Christian Quotes and also the Senior Writer at What Christians Want To Know whose mission is to equip, encourage, and energize Christians and to address questions about the believer’s daily walk with God and the Bible. You can follow Jack on Google Plus or check out his book Teaching Children the Gospel available on Amazon.

 

 

 

Charisma Magazine Newsletter

Prophecy: A New Day Is Dawning at the End of April

Recently, I had a prophetic dream, and it was very simple but very significant. In the dream, I was in a huge field. Morning dew was covering the field. I could tell it was very early morning because the sun was just starting to rise. As the sun began to rise, I was overwhelmed by the beauty of it. It was the prettiest sunrise I have ever seen. The vibrant colors, the oranges and reds and yellows filled the sky and it was so beautiful. Then the Lord began to speak and said, “A new day is dawning.” And there was a pause and I thought the Lord meant right now. But then the Lord spoke and said, “A new day is dawning at the end of April.”

A week before this, the Lord had instructed me to set aside the month of April to seek Him to a higher degree. I felt the Lord calling me to season of special prayer and fasting during the month of April. The Lord continued to speak to me about doing specific spiritual things in the month of April but also to do some physical things. So as I have been seeking the Lord, preparing for the month of April, this dream excited me to a whole new level.

I felt the Lord say, “This word is for the body of Christ.” I then remembered several words the Lord spoke to me last September and November about the first four months of 2018. The Lord kept telling me that this season would be a time where He would launch many people and many would experience new dimensions of favor and of His Spirit.

I feel what is coming at the end of April is not just a small season God is setting us up for years of life, planning, strategy and vision. The Lord was reminding me of many of my favorite Scriptures that promise that those who diligently seek Him will find Him. Through this the Lord has already been showing me strategies for so many different things. Just a few mornings ago, I woke up extremely excited. I shared two visions that I had for different things with my wife. We have already started implementing these new things just from things the Lord revealed to us just a few days ago.

What the Lord does within us during the month of April will cause Him to do something through us after that. It even says in Ephesians that God wants to do a powerful work in us so He can do it through us. In the month of April, diligently seek the Lord. Spend extra time in fasting and prayer. Dig deep into the Word. Make sure to connect with your prophets and apostles and allow them to speak into your life.

This is going to be a season of divine strategy and divine outpouring of the Holy Spirit. What God is about to in your life is powerful. Many have had dreams and visions for different things in past seasons but lacked the knowledge and strategy to move forward with them. This season, God is releasing those strategies to you so that you can go onto your next level, your next assignment and do whatever the Lord has for you.

New days are dawning! There is a new day dawning in your life. Look up! Night is over. This is your season. There is an acceleration from the Lord coming to you. I challenge you, get ready for April because God is about to show up in a great and mighty way. Seeking the Lord in the month of April is key to unlocking what is coming as this new day dawns for the body of Christ. 

Joe Joe Dawsonis the founder and apostle of ROAR Apostolic Network and ROAR Church Texarkana. Joe Joe is married to the love of his life, Autumn Dawson, and they have three children, Malachi, Judah and Ezra. The Dawsons live and teach a lifestyle of revival and awakening. Their desire is to see every believer fulfill their God-given destiny and live life to the fullest in God. Joe Joe is also the author of Living Your God-Sized Dream and Recipe for Revival. To connect with Joe Joe or for more information, visitjoejoedawson.net.

 

 

 

A  Prayer for Forgiving Others
By Rick Warren

“We know that our old life died with Christ on the cross so that our sinful selves would have no power over us.” -Romans 6:6a, NCV

Romans 6:6 says, “We know that our old life died with Christ on the cross so that our sinful selves would have no power over us” (NCV). What does “our sinful selves would have no power over us” mean? It means our natural inclination is to do the wrong thing.

My natural inclination when you hurt me is to hurt you back. My natural inclination when you say something bad against me is say something bad against you and hold on to it and never forgive you. All of the things that I’m naturally inclined to do actually make it worse.

But we can break that bondage to bitterness, that bondage to guilt, that bondage to resentment, that bondage to worry. We can keep from becoming slaves to the past and hurtful memories. We can choose to forgive.

The cross has the power to free you from grudges and grief and resentment. There is no other way to let go of these emotions that are weighing you down than the cross. Jesus on the cross broke the power of sin and death and bondage in your life.

I want you to think of the person you need to forgive, the person whose offense planted a seed of bitterness in you, and I want you to pray this prayer right now:

Father, only you understand how much I’ve been hurt by this person. I don’t want to carry the pain for another second. I don’t want to be a bitter person. But I need your grace and the power of the cross to release my hurt and to forgive those who’ve hurt me. This is the turning point. First, I need to experience your forgiveness. You know all the ways I’ve hurt others, and I’m so sorry for my sins. Jesus, thank you for dying for me. I accept your grace and forgiveness, and I need it daily. Today I’m turning to you, and I’m choosing to forgive the way you have forgiven me. Every time the memory comes back, I’ll forgive that person again until the pain is gone. Heal my heart with your grace. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

 

 

Curious, Convinced, or Committed?

This beginning of signs Jesus did in Cana of Galilee, and manifested His glory; and His disciples believed in Him. – (John 2:11)

When Christ walked our planet, He spent a lot of time with twelve handpicked disciples. In Matthew 5:1-2 we read, “And seeing the multitudes, He went up on a mountain, and when He was seated His disciples came to Him. Then He opened His mouth and taught them” (nkjv). After that came the Sermon on the Mount, which was given to His disciples who had gathered around Him. Jesus took time for His disciples. He spent time with them.

The word disciple means “a learner.” If you’re a disciple of Jesus, then you’re a learner. You’re someone who is listening and processing. These disciples listened to Jesus and followed Him.

Dwight Pentecost used three words to describe the different phases of where people are spiritually: curious, convinced, and committed.

During Jesus’ earthly ministry, He had a lot of curious people gather around him, especially when He performed a miracle like multiplying the loaves and fish. A free lunch? Now we’re talking. Jesus would show up, and the crowds would show up. They listened to Him, but it didn’t impact them for the most part.

Then there are the convinced. These people aren’t impacted personally by what they hear, but they give intellectual assent to it, which is an important step. For example, we read that the first miracle Jesus did was turn water into wine in Cana of Galilee. John 2:11 tells us, “This beginning of signs Jesus did in Cana of Galilee, and manifested His glory; and His disciples believed in Him” (nkjv). The disciples had gone from curious to convinced. They were so convinced that they were starting to follow Him. But at that point, after that miracle, they went from convinced to committed.

Which of these categories best describes you? Have you gone from curious to committed?

Copyright (c) 2018 by Harvest Ministries. All rights reserved.

Social media summary: Curious, convinced, or committed: Which one describes you?

 

 

Do Your Homework

Even a child is known by his actions, by whether his conduct is pure and right. – Proverbs 20:11

When is the last time you made a bad decision because you didn’t do your homework?

Over a three year period, thousands of criminals escaped from a Los Angeles County Sheriffs Work-Release program. A large num­ber of these men were hardened criminals, incarcerated for violent crimes. It was reported that most of the men in the program had been asked if they would prefer work-release to doing prison time, and that their criminal record had no bearing on the offer.

God expects us to be wise in our association with others. He doesn’t want us to fall prey to smooth talkers. If a person says one thing but his life speaks differently, beware! You can be sure that what you see is what you will get.

I challenge you today to seek wisdom from God in all that you do. Before putting your trust in another, look at his actions. Ask the Lord to give you the discernment necessary to avoid making the wrong decisions when it comes to relationships with others, both in your business life and your personal life.

“Trust the past to God’s mercy, the present to God’s love, and the future to God’s providence.” – St. Augustine ( 354-430)

Devotionals Daily: A Year with Jesus

From Dear Jesus by Sarah Young

I am always before you, beckoning you on—one step at a time. Neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, can separate you from My loving Presence.

Dear Jesus,

I want to live my life focused on Your Presence in the present. I believe You are always before me, leading and encouraging me, but I need to live out of that reality moment by moment. My mind tends to leap over the present moment to the next task, ignoring the one that is before me and the One who is before me. During rare times when I am able to stay focused on You, my work is infused with Your Presence. It is no longer laborious but delightful: more like play than work.

Beloved,

Living in collaboration with Me can be a foretaste of heaven. It is wonderful, though not easy: It requires a level of spiritual and mental concentration that is extremely challenging. In the Psalms, David wrote about this collaborative way of living, declaring that he had set Me always before him. As a shepherd, he had plenty of time to seek My Face and enjoy My Presence. He discovered the beauty of days lived with Me always before him—and beside him. I am training you to live this way too. This endeavor requires more persistent effort than anything else you have attempted. Yet, rather than detracting from your other activities, it fills them with vibrant Life.

Whatever you do, do it for Me—with Me, through Me, in Me. Even menial tasks glow with the Joy of My Presence when you do them for Me. Ultimately, nothing will be able to separate you from Me. So this you-and-Itogether venture can continue throughout eternity.

For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. – Romans 8:38–39

I have set the LORD always before me. Because he is at my right hand, I will not be shaken. – Psalm 16:8

And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for you serve the Lord Christ. – Colossians 3:23-24NKJV

 

 

What Jesus Did! ‘They Will Hear and Rise Again!’

[Jesus said,] “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 experience eternal life, and those who have continued in evil will rise to experience judgment.”

Key Thought

Do you remember the voice of your mother or father calling you home? I do. Of course, my perception of that voice was greatly influenced by what I was doing and whether that was pleasing to my mother or father. For those of us who have lived for Christ, hearing the voice of our Savior and being raised from the dead will be glorious! His voice will be powerful, majestic, and exciting. However, for those who have not lived for Jesus, who have done what is evil and not come to him for grace and salvation, his voice will be mighty and terrifying. Let’s make sure that our love for the Lord ensures that whether we are alive or dead when he comes, the sound of his voice will thrill us with the anticipation of our eternal glory!

Today’s Prayer

Father, shape my life into the character of your Son. Empower me toward holiness by your Holy Spirit as I seek to honor you with both my heart and my behavior. Forgive me for not being more passionate about my life being lived for your glory. Fill me with expectation as I await the sound of my Savior’s voice at his glorious return. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

 

Passion for Praise: ‘Giving Thanks’

Illustration of Psalm 50:23 — [God says] "But giving thanks is a sacrifice that truly honors me. If you keep to my path, I will reveal to you the salvation of God."

[God says] “But giving thanks is a sacrifice that truly honors me. If you keep to my path, I will reveal to you the salvation of God.”

Daily Wisdom: Proverbs 20:1

Illustration of Proverbs 20:1 — Wine is a mocker and beer a brawler; whoever is led astray by them is not wise.

 

God’s Holy Fire: ‘Who Controls You?’

Those who are dominated by the sinful nature think about sinful things, but those who are controlled by the Holy Spirit think about things that please the Spirit.

Key Thought

We don’t like to be controlled. However, we will be controlled either by our sinful nature or by the Spirit of God. There are no middle options (Ephesians 2:1-3Romans 6). While politically incorrect, deep in the core of our souls we know it’s true. The things that Satan entices us to think of as freedom invariably end up damaging us, our relationships, and our future. They enslave us to addictive processes, systems, and habits. We are sucked into the vortex of sin’s power: Our thoughts are increasingly controlled by sin’s enslaving lifestyle. The Spirit, however, frees us from this bondage. The Spirit gives us the power to live with freedom, enjoying a life full of his fruit — love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Galatians 5:22-23). And our role? First, we must choose to actively seek the Spirit’s influence over our will. Second, we must commit to responding to his lead in what we think and do (Galatians 5:25). When we look at our lives, do we see our thoughts and actions dominated by the sinful nature or by the Spirit? If the sinful nature is dominating us, it’s time to go back and focus on our role of seeking the Spirit and responding to his lead!

Today’s Prayer

O Father, draw me to you. Have your holiness capture my heart and mold my character. Have your Spirit shape my life to reflect your righteousness and mercy. I want to be led, transformed, and controlled by your Holy Spirit. I ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen.

 

 

 

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God’s Gentleness

Your gentleness made me great.
Psalm 18:35

These words are capable of being translated, “Your goodness made me great.” David gratefully ascribed all his greatness not to his own goodness, but to the goodness of God.

“Your providence” is another reading; and providence is nothing more than goodness in action. Goodness is the bud of which providence is the flower, or goodness is the seed of which providence is the harvest. Some render it, “Your help,” which is just another word for providence, providence being the firm ally of the saints, aiding them in the service of their Lord.

Or again, “Your humility made me great.” “Your condescension” may perhaps serve as a comprehensive reading, combining all these ideas, including humility. God’s making Himself little is the cause of our being made great. We are so little that if God should display His greatness without condescension, we would be trampled under His feet; but God, who must stoop to view the skies and bow to see what angels do, turns His eye yet lower and looks to the lowly and contrite and makes them great.

There are still other translations. For example, the Septuagint reads, “Your discipline. “Your fatherly correction—”made me great,” while another paraphrase reads, “Your word increased me.”

Still the idea is the same. David ascribes all his own greatness to the condescending goodness of his Father in heaven. May this attitude be echoed in our hearts this evening while we cast our crowns at Jesus’ feet and cry, “Your gentleness made me great.”

How marvelous is our experience of God’s gentleness! How gentle His corrections! How gentle His patience! How gentle His teachings! How gentle His invitations! Meditate upon this theme, believer. Let gratitude be awakened; let humility be deepened; let love be quickened before you fall asleep tonight.

 

 

Today’s Scripture

“Now that I am old and gray, do not abandon me, O God. Let me proclaim your power to this new generation, your mighty miracles to all who come after me.” Psalm 71:18 NLT

Thoughts for Today

Are you caring for your aging parents? If so, you are seeing what your aging process could be like. Are those thoughts depressing – or even frightening?

If you are not already providing care or support for a family member or friend, you probably will at some time during your life. The reality is that people are living longer. As a result of this longevity, people often lose the ability or strength to care for their own needs – and need someone to care for them.

As we care for an aging loved one, our thoughts naturally turn to our own future. God’s Word teaches us to be realistic about life and death and the impact the aging process has on all of us. Studying these teachings can help us better understand the process taking place in our parents and prepare us for our own aging.

Consider this . . .

Today’s scripture makes it clear that a person is never too old to be used of God. Encourage your parents that God still wants to use them. They can pray for the family . . . send cards of encouragement to others . . . share about their life experiences . . . and encourage others in the Lord. Explore the possibilities together!

Prayer

Father, open my parents’ eyes to the possibilities still before them. Help me encourage them to find ways to make a difference. Guide us in this process. In Jesus’ name…

 

 

 

Where Do You Place Your Confidence?
TGIF Today God Is First Volume 1 by Os Hillman
April 09, 2018

“Satan rose up against Israel and incited David to take a census of Israel.” -1 Chronicles 21:1

God always requires total trust in Him alone for our victories in life. Throughout Scripture we are cautioned not to place our trust in the strength of horses, other men or our own abilities. In 1 Chronicles, David’s decision to take a census was a failure to keep his trust totally upon the Lord.

David’s purpose in counting his population was to assess his military strength, much like the second census taken under Moses (see Numbers 1:2-3). David found 800,000 men eligible for military service in Israel, and 500,000 men in Judah (see 2 Samuel 24:9), more than double the previous head count.

David’s commander evidently recognized the grave error that his king was about to make. “But Joab replied, ‘May the Lord multiply his troops a hundred times over. My lord the king, are they not all my lord’s subjects? Why does my lord want to do this? Why should he bring guilt on Israel?'” (1 Chronicles 21:3).

Joab was right–the census displeased the Lord. David was falling into the temptation of trusting in the size of his army rather than in the Lord. In consequence, God punished David and reduced his forces by bringing a plague that killed 70,000 men.

How do you avoid placing your trust in God today? Do you trust your bank accounts, your skills and the security of your workplace? When you begin to place your faith in these things instead of in the Provider of these things you get into trouble with God.

What a lesson this is for each of us. Today, place your total trust in the Lord for all of your needs.

 

 

National Name Yourself Day - April 9

NATIONAL NAME YOURSELF DAY

National Name Yourself Day is observed each year on April 9.   To celebrate, you are allowed to give yourself a new name for one day.

If you have ever wondered what it would be like to have a different name, this would be the day to find out.  If you like your name and do not want to play along, you can try a nickname instead. The nickname might just stick with you.

HOW TO OBSERVE

Pick yourself a new name and use #NationalNameYourselfDay to post on social media.

HISTORY

Our research was unable to find the origin and the creator of National Name Yourself Day.

 

 

 

LifeNoteTopper1

Well, I was going to do more griping about myself and how unfair I think I and my sons were treated by both my family and his…….BUT!  Then I read the one Blog I follow…..Godtube……..and how the Cross has the power to set me free of all grudges, resentments, etc…..Well, please, Lord, set me free!!!

 

Stay blessed!!!

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