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Showing posts from September, 2013

Belongings Belong

I can’t think of one more word that will help you understand where I am going from that title so this devotion will be the explanation of how belongings belong.I’ve never had the occasion to think of my belongings in quite the same way as after my husband went to heaven and left all of our belongings to me.One of my great privileges for the twenty-seven years of our marriage was having a husband who took care of most of our belongings.I had belongings with all the benefits and none of the burdens.All that dramatically changed in an instant.The same belongings that had brought me comfort the day before became a burden.A year ago I could not cope with buying dog food, getting my dog to the veterinarian, getting my car serviced and having repairmen in my house alone!I called my parents, who came for a week to catch up with everything that was crashing down on me.In the year that has passed I have done a better job of caring for my belongings, but it seems a never ending task.

This week Go…

Humility and Tears

Humility and tears don’t sound like something we would strive for, do they?Most of us concur that life is found avoiding humility and tears.The apostle Paul makes some very bold statements in the New Testament books he wrote.Some wish that he never said what he said about women especially.In Acts 20:19, Luke quoted his description of ministry when he wrote Paul’s words: I served the Lord with great humility and with tears and in the midst of severe testing by the plots of my Jewish opponents.

Paul’s audience was the elders from Ephesus.These were church leaders who could better comprehend how humility and tears are part of serving God.Perhaps they needed to hear it again.They needed to hear it from the one who taught them all he knew about loving and serving God.These words were most likely received like affirmation that their own service to the Lord was on track with Paul’s example.This was Paul’s last opportunity to address this group, which caused them great grief (Acts 20:37).These…

FAITH

They don’t call it faith for nothing.My proof readers will want to change that sentence…but it is the best way to say what I need to say.I’m not God, but even I’m a little fed up with the weak-willed faith I hear coming from the hearts of Christians.Faith does not mean that you pray, and you get your own way!Faith is not about getting the things you want out of life!Where’s the faith in that?
Rather faith is trusting that what you can see isn’t all that is going on in any particular situation.Faith is about believing what you can’t see. Hebrews 11:1 defines it:Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.It involves believing that when the opposite of what you prayed for happens that there is something hopeful going on in heaven that you cannot see.When the baby you have been praying for dies of cancer rather than responds to treatment, faith says there is more to the story.A Christian who has faith will not lose hope.
Hebrews 11:6 goes so far to sa…

Fearless

There is a lot to be afraid about every waking moment of everyday living in a sin-filled world.We get good at desensitizing ourselves from fear, but spiritual maturity is the only way to truly live without fear.Living fearless is living like Christ.

Jesus expressed many human emotions while on earth.He demonstrated anger at the Pharisees and money changers, sadness over the death of his dear friend Lazarus, compassion for the crowds who had no idea who He really was or why He was on earth, disappointment in the disciples’ lack of faith, encouragement of the faith of followers—but never fear.Jesus was never afraid!He spoke quite a bit on the subject of fear, but His words were always instructions about how not to be afraid and how to conquer fear.Even in the Garden of Gethsemane He was fearless!
Humility is the first stepping stone to spiritual growth; fear is a good litmus step to monitor spiritual growth along the way.Have you passed your most recent pop quiz on spiritual growth lately…

What are you Working for?

May the favor of the Lord our God rest on us;
establish the work of our hands for us—
yes, establish the work of our hands
. (Psalm 90:17)
Work and favor do not seem to go hand in hand.Labor Day and freedom from work, now that sounds like favor!
Not it God’s sight!Our work is a gift from heaven.When we work—whether missionary work, church work, serving professions, or managing a warehouse; we are living our God’s call on our lives. We are demonstrating that we are formed in the image of God.The first image God shows us of Himself is of a worker—when he created the world and pronounced it good.
We can even go as far to say that our work is part of our worship experience.Work is our weekly opportunity to live out what we take in from our daily reading in the word and our weekly worship experiences.We work so that we can live out the gospel in our lives by caring for the poor, supporting the full time Christian workers like missionaries and pastors, and caring for our own families.Our work sho…