Saturday, February 25, 2006

Just Another Trip to Wal-Mart

My father-in-law passed away suddenly on Monday, February 20th. Following is the story my husband shared at his dad's funeral.

On Sunday my Heavenly Father gave me an incredible gift that I’ll cherish forever. It was a day with my dad. After church, I headed "home" to see my parents. Dad cut my hair one last time. Little did I know, it would be his last haircut ever. While I sat in the barber chair, he reflected about his good buddy who had just died before Christmas. He never quite got over his friend's death. He said to me, "You don’t know when you’re going to die."

We spent the afternoon watching the race. I called him that evening, for some unknown reason, to see if he was still watching the race.

On Monday, he got up. It was an ordinary day and he was going to take just another trip to Wal-Mart. He told my mom he’d back in a few minutes. Little did he know, it wasn’t just another trip to Wal-Mart, it was his last trip to Wal-Mart. He wouldn’t be coming home.

You know the greatest commandment Jesus ever gave was to love God and love others. (Matt 22:37-38)

One of the things that I’m learning in life, and have been challenged by in dad’s death is I need to do a better job of loving God and loving others. Dad’s sudden death has challenged me to be the best husband and dad I can be. I now realize how fragile life is. I need to make the most of every opportunity to show my family God’s love. I still have mom and I’m not going to miss the chance to love her.

I want to give you the same challenge. Don’t wait! You may not have tomorrow to tell your spouse how much you love them. You may not have tomorrow to hug your kids and tell them how special they are. You may not have tomorrow to do and say the things that really matter. Love others.

As dad said to me Sunday night, "You don’t know when you’re going to die."

Let me ask you two questions: If you die today, do you know for sure that you will be with God in heaven? If God were to ask you, "Why should I let you into my heaven?" What would you say?

If you don’t know for sure that you will be with God in heaven some day, I encourage you to talk with a pastor or visit the link on this blog to Becoming a Christian. If you can’t answer God, telling him why He should let you into His home, please seek. We would love to assure your entrance to heaven, our Father’s House.

You don’t know when just another trip to Wal-Mart, might be your last.

If you’d like to join me in this challenge to love God and love others, please leave a comment on this blog. We'll pray for you! Don’t Wait! Tomorrow may be too late.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

The Good Law

Romans 7:12-13

12But still, the law itself is holy and right and good.
13But how can that be? Did the law, which is good, cause my doom? Of course not! Sin used what was good to bring about my condemnation. So we can see how terrible sin really is. It uses God's good commandment for its own evil purposes.

Righteous King~
Honorable Ruler of Heaven & Earth~
I tremble in fear of Your Highness. Standing in awe of Your holy, right and good law, I praise You with an upright heart. Your spoken Word is more precious to me than thousands of pieces of silver and gold. It’s pure joy to my heart, mind and soul, guaranteeing my rich heritage forever.

Completely righteous, fully trustworthy, and thoroughly tested, Your rules awaken my conscience, warning me of dangers. Satan has set a snare for me. Don’t let me be lured by his lies, choked by his charm, or suffocated by sin. He wants to use Your wise Words for his wicked ways.

O Lord, hide Your Word in my heart that I might not sin against You. Teach me knowledge and good judgment. Let me understand so that I can obey with all my heart. I don’t want sin to ever rule over me.

When I’m confused, Your law counsels me. When I’m in a sinking in a sea of sin, it’s the life preserver that saves me. When I’m consumed with sorrow and sadness, it comforts me. When I’m weak and weary, it strengthens me. Blinded by the shadow of darkness, Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.

I’ll delight in Your laws, meditate on them daily, and try to never neglect them. Use them O Lord, to preserve my life, according to Your love through Jesus I pray. Amen.

God’s laws aren’t meant to restrict us, but protect us. Be thankful for their convicting power because it saves your life!

To grasp the goodness, righteousness and holiness of God’s Word, I encourage you to read the longest chapter in the Bible, Psalm 119. Highlight all the ways God’s laws benefit you.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Serving Fruit

Romans 7:4, 6
4So, my brothers, you also died to the law through the body of Christ, that you might belong to another, to him who was raised from the dead, in order that we might bear fruit to God. 6But now, by dying to what once bound us, we have been released from the law so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit, and not in the old way of the written code.

Jesus, Lover of my soul, it’s an honor to be united and living with You, the most powerful King of heaven and earth. Connected to You, I’m filled with love, strength and a clear mind. I’m coupled with the same power source that raised You from the dead. Wow!

Joined with You, I can selflessly serve others sweet fruit …

  • I can love the unlovable, forgive the unforgivable, and approach the unapproachable
  • I can smile when I feel like frowning
  • I can lay down my hostile, hateful attitudes that seek revenge and retaliation to be a peacemaker
  • I can endure difficulties without condemnation
  • I can accept others without being critical or judgmental
  • I can show kindness to the least, the lost and the last
  • I can do good deeds
  • I can trust You, believing You’re sufficient to meet all my needs
  • I can put on a gentle, quiet, humble heart thinking of others more than myself
  • I can exercise self-control, self-discipline, and a sound mind
Please dear Lord, attach me securely to You today so that I can serve You with all my heart at any time, in any place, and any situation in the power of Jesus, my Risen Lord, for Your pleasure and glory forever and ever. Amen.

Are you plugged into the power that will enable you to bear sweet fruit and serve others selflessly? Find someone – the least, the last or the lost – to serve in the power of the Holy Spirit today.

My Master

Romans 6:16-18
16 Don’t you realize that whatever you choose to obey becomes your master? You can choose sin, which leads to death, or you can choose to obey God and receive his approval. 17 Thank God! Once you were slaves of sin, but now you have obeyed with all your heart the new teaching God has given you. 18 Now you are free from sin, your old master, and you have become slaves to your new master, righteousness.

My Lord and Master~
O Lord, truly, I am Your faithful and wise servant, freed from my chains to work for You. Forgive me for all the times I’ve told You what I’ll do for You. Forgive me for all the ways I’ve asked You to serve me, forgetting who is the Master and who is the servant. Forgive me for arguing with You, making excuses to walk away from a job that’s uninteresting or uneasy for me.

Bought with Your blood, I want to live a life pleasing to You. I long to serve You, my Master, with wholehearted devotion. Diligently, I’ll work the fields, plant the seeds, water the crop, weed the thorns, and reap the harvest for You. Cheerfully, I’ll serve You even when the scorching summer sun is searing my soul, and the wicked winter winds are wildly whistling, "worry".

Watching and waiting, I’ll be dressed and prepared to join You in the fields, on command. Willingly and promptly, I’ll lay aside my own interests to accept Your orders. I believe You will equip me to complete anything You ask me to do for the glory of Your kingdom. Please just give me a resilient heart to trust and obey bringing honor to You, my Adonai. Amen.

Do your actions acknowledge Christ as Lord of your life? If not, what response do you want to make to His claim on your life?

Monday, February 20, 2006

Take My Life

Romans 6:13
Offer yourselves to God, as those who have been brought from death to life; and offer the parts of your body to him as instruments of righteousness.

Lord of Life,
Thank You for raising me from the dead! Today, I’m celebrating the blessed gift of life by offering my entire body to You in worship.

Take my life and let it be consecrated, Lord, to Thee.
Take my moments and my days; let them flow in ceaseless praise.

Take my hands, and let them move at the impulse of Thy love.
Take my feet, and let them be swift and beautiful to Thee.

Take my voice, and let me sing always, only, for my King.
Take my lips, and let them be filled with messages from Thee.

Take my silver and my gold; not a mite would I withhold.
Take my intellect, and use every power as Thou shalt choose.

Take my will, and make it Thine; it shall be no longer mine.
Take my heart, it is Thine own; it shall be Thy royal throne.

Take my love, my Lord, I pour at Thy feet its treasure store.
Take myself, and I will be ever, only, all for Thee.

Please show me, Living Lord, any unsurrendered parts of my life so that I can quickly bring them to the altar as an offering of my heartfelt love and devotion. You deserve all glory, honor and praise! Use me, O Lord of Life, as an instrument to do what’s right for the glory of Your Living Name. Amen.

Today, I encourage you to offer yourself completely to God in worship because He brought you from death to life.

Take My Life and Let It Be, Frances Havergal, Copyright Public Domain

Friday, February 17, 2006

Set Free

Psalm 116:3-6
3 The cords of death entangled me,
the anguish of the grave came upon me;
I was overcome by trouble and sorrow.
4 Then I called on the name of the LORD :
"O LORD, save me!"
5 The LORD is gracious and righteous;
our God is full of compassion.
6 The LORD protects the simplehearted;
when I was in great need, he saved me.

Lord of Life,
I praise and worship You with heartfelt devotion! Your works are wonderful! I will sing of Your love forever.

The cords of death entangled me. Intertwined in a web of confusion, trouble trapped me and sorrow seized me. Unable to escape Satan’s snare, choked by his charm and strangled by his shams, I was caught in his lies and left to die.

In fearful desperation, I cried out to You, "O Lord, Save me!" In Your loving kindness, You came to my rescue and saved my life. I didn’t deserve to be released, but because You are gracious You set me free. Unwrapped from the cords that entangled me, I’m free to stand up right and tell others the wonders of Your works.

Lord, I will extol You with all my heart, mind, soul and strength because You have done great things for me! Joyfully, I’ll offer You a sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving because You saved me from Satan’s snare, brought me safely into Your home, and healed all my wounds with the crimson blood of Your Dear Son through whom I live and work and have my being. To Him be the glory and honor forever and ever! Amen.

Will you worship God with all your heart this weekend for His wonderful work of salvation?

Thursday, February 16, 2006


Romans 6:5-11
5 Since we have been united with him in his death, we will also be raised as he was. 6 Our old sinful selves were crucified with Christ so that sin might lose its power in our lives. We are no longer slaves to sin. 7 For when we died with Christ we were set free from the power of sin. 8 And since we died with Christ, we know we will also share his new life. 9 We are sure of this because Christ rose from the dead, and he will never die again. Death no longer has any power over him. 10 He died once to defeat sin, and now he lives for the glory of God. 11 So you should consider yourselves dead to sin and able to live for the glory of God through Christ Jesus.

Great God of Freedom & Life,
You are mighty in power. I believe that, in Your infinite strength, You raised Jesus from the dead to stand victoriously over Satan and his limited power. I’m also confident that the moment I put my trust in You, I was filled with that same strong power to walk away from my addictions, attractions, and afflictions. I believe that the power of the Holy Spirit has set me FREE!.

Free from my sinful nature
Free from death’s grip
Free from Satan’s snare
Free from fear
Free from selfish desires
Free to be Your dearly beloved child
Free to live with You forever
Free to love and serve others
Free to bear the sweet fruit of my salvation
Free to be all that You intended me to be

I praise You because I can walk freely in the power of forgiveness! Right now, I am choosing to run away from the darkness of my past, and into Your loving arms where You’ll shelter me with Your all-sufficient grace.

Please dear Lord, teach me the truth and give me faith to BELIEVE so that I can walk in the freedom of the cross every day of my life. I am forever Yours because of Jesus, the One and Only Source of Truth! Amen.

God has given you the power to walk in freedom from your addictions, attractions, and afflictions. Do you claim that freedom? Do you run into his loving arms when Satan is tempting you?

Our gospel came to you not simply with words, but also with power, with the Holy Spirit, and with deep conviction. 1 Thessalonians 1:5

Wednesday, February 15, 2006


Romans 6:3-4
3Or don't you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? 4We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.

Today’s Prayer Pal is a love letter to God recollecting my experience with baptism. It is my testimony of death and life … to God be the glory!

Dearest Father in Heaven,
You are the greatest giver of life. Thank You for the significant symbolism Paul teaches about baptism. I remember my own experience:

For 18 years I was ignorant, stiff-necked and hard-hearted, refusing baptism. Growing up in a deceitful church, I was confirmed and joined the church at the age of 13, believing that I was a saved soul, bound for heaven. However, when I was 17, I learned the truth: confirmation and membership don’t have the power to save souls. Salvation comes only through friendship with Your own Son. Accepting Jesus as my friend was all I needed – no membership, no confirmation, no baptism – just Jesus, the One and Only.

I plodded along as Your half-hearted friend for 18 years. There was no intimacy, no secrets shared, no stories to tell. You were my acquaintance and church was the place I met You at a distance.

Reluctantly, I agreed to baptism to please my husband, still lacking understanding of the significant and important symbolism. I remember clearly:

  • My body immersed, buried in the warm water. Then, I rose up.
  • The Holy Spirit descended on me like a dove, I saw it, I felt it.
  • The glory of God, Your felt presence, fell on me like the bright rays from the morning sun.
Little did I know that my old way of life was buried that night – gone forever. Nor did I realize that I was given a new life and would be forever changed.

Shortly after being obedient to baptism and filled with the Holy Spirit, I began coming closer to You. You spoke to me through Your Word, for the first time ever. As I spent time with You, I started to understand things that were previously uninteresting and incomprehensible. A sweet, intimate friendship was blossoming. I’d share my happy and hurt heart with You. I’d tell You stories … and You’d tell me stories. You were writing my story and I fell madly in love with You!

Gone were my pride, conceit and arrogance, replaced with humility, sensitivity, and compassion. Gone was my passionate pursuit of worldy power, possessions, and pleasure, replaced with a zealous search for Your holy power, possession, and pleasure.

With my old self buried, through baptism, and risen to a new life with You, I’ve become a useful instrument to pour out Jesus onto a hurting, helpless and hopeless world. Thank You, Jesus, for opening my heart and changing my mind to the truth about the significant symbolism of baptism. May You be glorified in my new life through Jesus. All glory is Yours forever and ever. Amen.

Maybe your story isn’t as profound as mine because you weren’t as ignorant, stiff-necked, and hard-hearted as me, but when you were baptized, your old way of life was buried and you too, were given a new life. Praise God and celebrate your death and resurrection.

If you’re struggling with baptism by immersion, as I did for many years, I encourage you to pray about it, seek more information, and obey God so that abundant blessings can be yours.

Following is the link to an excellent article by Max Lucado that explained baptism to me serveral years after I submitted to it.

Had someone explained it to me like this years ago, I probably wouldn't have wandered so long. If you're struggling with the idea, I encourage you to read it.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

A Valentine From God

~ Be Mine ~

I have chosen you out of all the peoples on the face of the earth to be my people, my treasured possession.
(Deuteronomy 7:8 paraphrased)

~ You Are Special ~

In love, I chose and adopted you to be my beloved child.
(Ephesians 1:4-5 paraphrased)

~ You Are Loved ~

Jesus, My dearly Beloved,
You are King of my heart! I love and adore You! You’re the lover of my soul and my Best Friend. Thank You for choosing me out of all the people on the face of the earth to be Your treasured possession. I’m special and sincerely Yours.

I’m ecstatic that You chose and adopted me into Your royal family because You wanted to, not because You had to. What a privilege it is to be loved by You, the Most High King of the Universe! Thank You for paying the high price of my adoption with the pure, perfect, and priceless blood of Your Precious Son.

Accepting me as Your cherished child, You lavished me with incredible gifts:

  • A rich robe of righteousness to cover my shame
  • A sparkling crown of forgiveness to cover my sin
  • A beautiful new life free of defects and deformities
  • A wealth of grace
  • A sweet heart, overflowing with Your love and compassion
  • A terrific tattoo on my heart identifying me as Yours
  • A fairy tale dream of a home in heaven where You promise I’ll live happily ever after with You
Sweetheart, Your love is extraordinary, Your kindness extravagant, and Your favor extreme. I long to be held in Your strong arms forever, touched by love and kissed with compassion. I wish to hear Your sweet voice whisper in my ear, "I am yours and you are mine. Won’t You be my Valentine?"

Dearest Jesus, my beloved, of course, I’ll be Your Valentine! I love You with all that is within me and am sincerely Yours forever and ever. Amen.

You are special and you are loved. Do you believe God? He wants you to be His Valentine, not just today, but everyday.

Monday, February 13, 2006

The Generous Gift of Forgiveness

Romans 5:15-16

15And what a difference between our sin and God's generous gift of forgiveness. For this one man, Adam, brought death to many through his sin. But this other man, Jesus Christ, brought forgiveness to many through God's bountiful gift. NLT

Luke 23: 33, 34 … they crucified him, along with the criminals. Jesus said, "Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing."

My Faithful Father and Friend-

You are the giver of all good and perfect gifts! Thank You for the fabulous gift of forgiveness. It arrived when I was wondering aimlessly, staring death in the face, and hell was hard on my heels. I didn’t know which way to turn. Desperately, I cried out to You for help. In Your ceaseless compassion and mercy, You heard my prayer and answered, leading me to Your Son.

Laying down all the shattered pieces of my life, I knelt at the foot of the cross. There, Your precious Son shamefully hung in excruciating pain, exhausted, and asphyxiated. As the crimson blood and pure water dripped on me from His open wounds, He begged You to forgive those who drove the nails into his hands. Sadly, I was one of them! It was my sins that held Him there!

Let those Words, "Father, forgive them for they don’t know what they’re doing," penetrate the hollow of my heart and sink deep into my brain today. No matter what I’ve done in the past, I am completely forgiven. At the foot of the cross, You gently, meticulously and painstakingly picked up each devastated piece of my life and masterfully restored my lustrous allure.

Accepting this generous gift comes with a huge responsibility. If I take it, I must give it away. Because You bought it for me with Your bruised, battered, and broken body, You expect me to pardon people who have inflicted me with pain. No hurt I endure on earth can compare to the agony of Your death on the cross. Thank you, Father, for giving me Your Son to save me from my sin!

Since my sins have been forgiven in Your name, please empower me to pass the present of forgiveness to someone undeserving for the honor of Your glorious name! Amen.

Because I have accepted Your gift of forgiveness, I will forgive ______________________ for the glory of Your name. Fill in the blank and obey, for it is written: "if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you." Matthew 6:14

Friday, February 10, 2006

Friendship With God

Romans 5:6-11
6When we were utterly helpless, Christ came at just the right time and died for us sinners. 7Now, no one is likely to die for a good person, though someone might be willing to die for a person who is especially good. 8But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners. 9And since we have been made right in God's sight by the blood of Christ, he will certainly save us from God's judgment. 10For since we were restored to friendship with God by the death of his Son while we were still his enemies, we will certainly be delivered from eternal punishment by his life. 11So now we can rejoice in our wonderful new relationship with God--all because of what our Lord Jesus Christ has done for us in making us friends of God. NLT

Holy and Awesome God!
Your love is absolutely amazing! That You would leave your beautiful, majestic, celestial home in heaven to come to this wretched, ugly, hellish hole on earth to save hateful, hostile humans is unfathomable. I might die for someone really special, like my child, but I’d never die for someone who despises me. Yet, that’s exactly what You did for me. While I was Your vilest offender, You intentionally died for me.

Laying down Your life, You bridged the great canyon that separated us. Your broken body made the Way for me to safely cross over into Your glorious, royal, everlasting kingdom. I no longer have to fear falling to my death and eternal punishment because You took my hand, called me "friend" and graciously brought me into Your presence. Thank You Jesus!

I can’t begin to comprehend why You’d choose to save a horrible sinner like me. Your thoughts are greater than my thoughts and Your ways are wider than my ways. It’s a mystery I’ll never understand, but like a na├»ve child, I’ll believe that I’m Your "friend" because of Jesus.

Out of deep, heartfelt gratitude, I’ll rejoice in this wonderful new relationship I have with You. Because You’ve proven Your divine love to me, I’ll trust You to be my best, most devoted, and loyal Friend to the very end. All glory to You for saving me from the hole of hell and sending me to Your magnificent, majestic, most high kingdom where I will live happily ever after because of Jesus. Amen.

Thank God for His amazing love! How will you show your appreciation?

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Patience In The Face Of Pain

James 5:10-11
10Brothers, as an example of patience in the face of suffering, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord. 11As you know, we consider blessed those who have persevered. You have heard of Job's perseverance and have seen what the Lord finally brought about. The Lord is full of compassion and mercy.

O Great and Powerful God, whose name is the Lord Almighty, great are Your purposes and mighty are Your deeds. Nothing is beyond Your control including Satan who ruthlessly and relentlessly torments me. You are fully aware of my tremendous distress and difficulty. My troubles do not surprise You. You are with me always, full of compassion and mercy.

Thank You for Your ancient words, long preserved for my walk in this world. All I have to do is look at Job as an example of patience in the face of pain. Rather than cursing and abandoning You, he depended and drew strength from You in his anguish. Please use my adversity to strengthen my faith. During difficult days I want to dig my roots deeper into You in order to withstand the storms.

I will not hide my overwhelming despair. My emotions will show that I am human. Mourning my loss, I will continue to worship You, Sovereign God, who has authority over everything. Like Job, I want to pass the test and prove that people can love You for who You are and not for what You give. Help me to find happiness and fulfillment in the one reality no one can take from me – Your great love for me.

Please dear Lord, make me a person of patience, faith, and endurance like Job. I long to pray continually and give thanks to You in all my circumstances, recognizing that difficulties are Your will for me in Christ Jesus through whom I live and pray. Amen.

If you are facing a strong adversary, I encourage you to read Job, chapters 1 and 2. Let him be an example of faith and endurance through the storms. Then, read Chapter 42, with hope.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Hope of Heaven

Romans 5:1-5
1 Therefore, since we have been made right in God’s sight by faith, we have peace with God because of what Jesus Christ our Lord has done for us. 2 Because of our faith, Christ has brought us into this place of highest privilege where we now stand, and we confidently and joyfully look forward to sharing God’s glory.

3 We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they are good for us—they help us learn to endure. 4 And endurance develops strength of character in us, and character strengthens our confident expectation of salvation. 5 And this expectation will not disappoint us. For we know how dearly God loves us, because he has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love.

King of Heaven,
You are my Hope and my heart’s One desire! Thank You for the priceless, precious, perfect gift of peace I received the moment I first believed that You are the Father of my Lord, Jesus Christ. Accepting Your generous gift of peace placed me in a position of privilege in Your presence. Because Jesus brought me to You, we can enjoy a close intimate relationship. As Your relative I can confidently stand straight and tall before Your throne and address You as my loving Father. I don’t have to be afraid. I know that You will lavish me with grace, mercy and love rather than criticism, judgment, and revenge. Joyfully, I anticipate becoming the beautiful, blameless child You intend me to be.

King of Glory, let me cheerfully and courageously embrace troubles and trials believing that they are for my good. Polish me with patience to persist through the pressures of sin, suffering and sadness. Pain will purify and perfect my personality. As I conquer crises and catastrophes, I will emerge from the fire stronger, purer, and closer to Your perfect image.

Holy Spirit, please pour love into my heart today. No matter how busy, tired or frustrated I am, please help me to keep smiling and respond with patience and kindness. No matter how sick, lousy or hurt I feel, give me a cheerful heart and a desire to serve others in love. Make my heart a shimmering showcase to display Your fine workmanship. Please let others see the Hope of Heaven in me, and be glorified in my life, Lord, be glorified today because of Jesus. Amen.

How do you respond to troubles and trials, crises and catastrophes? Can the watching world see your hope of heaven?

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Believing God

Genesis 12:1, 2, 4
1 The LORD had said to Abram, "Leave your country, your people and your father's household and go to the land I will show you. 2 "I will make you into a great nation
4 So Abram left, as the LORD had told him; and Lot went with him. Abram was seventy-five years old when he set out from Haran.

Genesis 21:5
Abraham was a hundred years old when his son Isaac was born to him.

Romans 4:20
Abraham never wavered in believing God’s promise. In fact, his faith grew stronger, and in this he brought glory to God. He was fully convinced that God is able to do whatever he promises. NLT

Omnipotent God,
I’m astonished at the way You teach me the truth when I take time to come to class. Lord, I know the delightful dream You have for me. You promise to prosper me and give me a bright future. My hope is in heaven. Now, I just need faith like Abraham to believe You!

Thank You for showing me today that it took 25 years to fulfill Your promise to Abraham. I now understand that it takes time to develop character before You give us our "Big Assignment." Abraham needed 25 years to grow into the father You intended him to be. Along the way, there were many tests and challenges, yet he never wavered in believing Your promise. In fact, his faith grew stronger and he brought glory to You.

Oh, to have that kind of faith! Please prepare me for my "Big Assignment" by giving me many little challenges along the way. As I demonstrate my faithfulness in the small stuff, I know You’ll entrust me with more and more responsibility. Please dear Lord, don’t let me grow weary and faint of heart. Don’t let me give up and quit! Give me a spirit of perseverance when things seem impossible. I never want to waver in believing Your promise. I long to grow stronger and bring glory to You. I want to be fully convinced that You are able to do whatever You promise. Please give me faith to believe in the name of Jesus as I wander through the years. To God be the glory, great things He has done. Amen.

What dream has God given you? What will you do to persevere through the years until you see it fulfilled?

Monday, February 06, 2006

He Speaks To Me

John 14:26
Jesus said, "The Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you."

John 16:13-14
Jesus said, "When he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. He will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you."

Holy Spirit,
You are an incredibly intellectual instructor who meets me in the classroom of my heart. When I earnestly seek You as a devoted student, I’m imparted with wisdom, knowledge and understanding of Your good, pleasing and perfect will. Please give me patience to sit still and pay attention to Your teaching. I have so much to learn and am eager to discover all the things You want me to know. The more time I spend under Your instruction, the brighter I become. Speak to me, Holy Spirit, in the name of Jesus. Speak to me and teach me all things.

When I’m informed of important things, send me into the learning lab of life. Give me opportunities to test my skills through situations and circumstances surroundings me. Confident of the knowledge I’ve comprehended in Your classroom, I’ll trust You to remind me of everything I need to serve sick and sad souls. The more hands on experience I get, the brighter I become. Guide me, Holy Spirit, in the name of Jesus. Guide me every step of the way.

Knowing that You will only tell me what You hear from the Father, I will faithfully rely on Your textbook, the Holy Bible, to be my sole resource and reference manual. Whenever I’m uncertain of what to do next, I’ll silently sit and studiously search it. I’ll constantly communicate with You through prayer, watching and waiting until You clearly make known to me the way I should go. As I serve wherever I’m sent, may others will see the brightness of Jesus illuminated in me. Be glorified, Holy Spirit, in the name of Jesus. Be glorified in me. Amen.

If you have trouble hearing God speak, this may be your wake up call. You can’t understand the truth of God unless You sit still and pay attention to His instruction in the classroom of your heart. Will you meet Him there today? He’s waiting for His students to show up and eager to teach them all things. I encourage you to take your Bible and go quickly. There’s so much to learn, and so little time.

Friday, February 03, 2006

Heaven's Gate

Psalm 118: 17-21
17 I will not die but live,
and will proclaim what the LORD has done.

18 The LORD has chastened me severely,
but he has not given me over to death.

19 Open for me the gates of righteousness;
I will enter and give thanks to the LORD.

20 This is the gate of the LORD
through which the righteous may enter.

21 I will give you thanks, for you answered me;
you have become my salvation.

Lord Jesus,
You are the Heavenly Gate! I exalt You and thank You for swinging wide the door of righteousness so that everyone who believes in You can come to the Father. Thank You for laying down Your life to make an opening for me to access my home in heaven. You are good and Your love endures forever! I sing for joy because You have done great things for me. You have led me from the broad road leading to ruin through the narrow Gate of Life.

Within the walls of Your gated community, there is safety, security, and shelter. Thank You, Father for saving me and sending me to Your kingdom where there is fullness of life. In the presence of Your majesty, I can graze on Your glorious grace day and night. Living within Your limits, my life overflows with mercy and love. There is no place in heaven or earth as peaceful.

Thank You for leading me through the Heavenly Gate to a prosperous place full of rich, luscious life where the Son always shines brightly. Today I celebrate glad tidings of great joy because I have found You, the One Way to everlasting happiness. Show me someone traveling the broad road to ruin and I’ll eagerly lead them to the Gate of Righteousness praising Your redeeming love. Amen.

Thank God that the Gate of Heaven has been open to you! Share the joy of your discovery with someone traveling the road to ruin.

John 10:9
Jesus said, "I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved."

Thursday, February 02, 2006

One Reason To Be Happy

Romans 4:7-8
Blessed are they
whose transgressions are forgiven,
whose sins are covered.
Blessed is the man
whose sin the Lord will never count against him.

Blessed Redeemer,
I believe You are the Most High and Holy Judge. Thank You for accepting my pitiful plea and declaring me "not guilty." I’m so blessed! Humbly, I’m brought to my knees because of Your incredibly merciful verdict.

Overwhelming joy pours from my heart because Jesus has paid my fine and bought my freedom. I believe my rebellious, deliberate, stubborn sins are forgiven and forgotten forever. I’m confident my daily unintentional, accidental sins will never be counted against me. Blessed assurance! Thankfully, I trust You to make me right in Your sight.

Breathe on me, Holy Spirit. Guide me with love and wisdom. Subdue my stubborn will. Tame my temptations. Control my conduct. Heal my hurts. Right my wrongs. And, put a smile on my face today that reflects the joy in my heart because my defiant disobedience has been redeemed by One blessed deal for the praise of Your glorious name. Amen.

If you have nothing else to smile about today, be happy that your sins are forgiven and forgotten forever. That’s worth celebrating!

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Forgiven & Forgotten

Romans 4:3
Abraham believed God and it was credited to him as righteousness.

Genesis 15:4-6
4 Then the word of the LORD came to him: "This man will not be your heir, but a son coming from your own body will be your heir." 5 He took him outside and said, "Look up at the heavens and count the stars—if indeed you can count them." Then he said to him, "So shall your offspring be."

6 Abram believed the LORD, and he credited it to him as righteousness.

Faithful Father,
I’m so thankful that Your incredible story has been perfectly preserved through thousands of years. From it, I can clearly see that Your faithfulness endures forever. You’ve proven that You’re completely reliable, totally dependable and altogether trustworthy.

I believe that You have a plan bigger than I can imagine and that, like Abram, I’ve been chosen to be part of it. I can’t begin to fathom my assignment because Your thoughts are so much bigger than my feeble mind can comprehend. I’m certain my mission will seem ridiculous and impossible; something I can’t do on my own. Like Abram, I want to be in a close, intimate relationship with You. Fully surrendered and submitted to You, I believe You can do anything through me.

Lord, I won’t wait until You give me the details. I long to experience You now. Because I want to live in the fullness of Your blessing, I’ll go wherever You lead me, trusting the Bible to be my guide. Please give me more faith to believe You, more confidence to trust You, and more courage to follow You beyond my comfortable borders to the bountiful land of blessings where you live, rule and reign forever because of Jesus. Hallelujah! Amen.

Do you believe God can do the impossible through you? Being in a right relationship with Him is the key. What steps are you willing to take to follow Him?