Today’s devotion is based on 1 Corinthians 3:14, “If what has been built survives, the builder will receive a reward.”
Apostle Paul was writing to the people at the church in Corinth. Paul sent this message to encourage them and lead them into the mysteries of God. Paul opened their minds to the wisdom of Christ by helping them to look beyond what they could see in the human sense. He showed them that the cross is the only way, and this would require patient endurance in their spiritual growth as a church. They could only do this by trusting Christ as their spiritual foundation, their stable base. Paul goes on to say that this will be hard because it will go against everything they thought they knew – after all, the way of the cross is folly to the world. As we read God’s word today, we, too, can be reminded of the importance of placing our trust in Christ as our only foundation.
Please pray with me: Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for sending your Son, Jesus Christ, to be your church’s firm foundation. Lord, you know how fragile our faith can be when we are fearful about the future. Teach us your ways, and raise up faithful servants to nourish your church with your life-giving word. We ask this with the help of the Holy Spirit and in Jesus’ name. Amen.
What is the Kingdom of God?
Today's devotion is based on Matthew 13:33, "The kingdom of heaven is like leaven that a woman took and hid in three measures of flour, till all was leavened."
God's word today invites us to contemplate the mystery of the kingdom of heaven. The parables tell us that the kingdom of God is both hidden and life-giving – seemingly impossible to find, yet, when discovered, found to be of priceless worth.
So, what do we know about the kingdom of God? We know that Christ is the reigning king. We know that the kingdom of heaven has come in Jesus and that we are called, like him, to abide in the Father's will so that we may enter it. We also know that God's kingdom bridges earth to eternity. It is neither time-bound nor limited to earthly things nor set apart in a far-off spiritual realm. It is both temporal and eternal, now and forever.
Christ's kingdom reigns in his church in every time and place. As we honor God's word, gladly hearing and learning it together, we can use it to pray for others, the world, and ourselves. God's word is the transforming agent. Let us be servants of the kingdom, dispersed through the world to bring God's restorative mercy to his creation.
Please pray with me: Dear Heavenly Father, thank you that your kingdom has come and grows in a hidden way like leaven in flour. Please bless us with your word to grow our faith, hope, and love through our reigning king, Jesus Christ, Amen.
Today's devotion is based on Romans 1:20, “Since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.”
As we witness the beauty and majesty of this world, let us remember that it is all created by God, who loves us enough to come into this world to save us. Let us also look forward to the new world that he promises to make for his followers when this world comes to an end.
Let us pray together: Dear Lord Jesus, we thank you for the beautiful world we live in and for coming to this world to be our Savior. Help us to live for eternity with you. Amen.
Who knows the thoughts of God?
Today's devotion is based on1 Corinthians 2:11, "For who knows a person's thoughts except their own spirit within them? In the same way, no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God."
Who really knows you? Others can get to know you through your words and actions, but no one can read your thoughts. As such, no one knows you in your innermost self, with all your deepest thoughts, desires, fears, and such. You are the only one who truly knows yourself.
Just as it's only our spirit that knows our thoughts, so it's only the Spirit of God who knows the thoughts of God. Of course, this is infinitely more mysterious in God's case, as the Spirit of God is a distinct person within the Trinity. You know you. God knows God.
What this means, then, for us is very simple. We don't start with our ideas if we want to learn about God. Instead, we look to the Spirit to reveal to us what we can know about God. The Spirit does this through God's Word and his ongoing work of enlightening our minds to understand his word.
Please pray with me: Gracious Father, thank you for revealing yourself to us by your own Spirit through your word. Enlighten us more and more by your Spirit, so we may truly know you. In Jesus' name, Amen.
God’s wisdom; guide to better living
Today’s devotion is based on Proverbs 2:6, “For the Lord gives wisdom; from his mouth come knowledge and understanding.”
Our Lord gives us intelligence, reasoning, and personal choice, where our emotions, senses, conscience, and values are deeply engaged, challenged, and affirmed as we act. God has created us to be in a constant relationship with him. From his words in the Bible, we grow in knowledge and understanding. Listen and rest in the deep comfort of his wisdom so that you will become wise in the ways of the Lord.
Please pray with me the prayer for today: Heavenly Father, gracious God, creator and sustainer of all things, seen and unseen; thank you for being patient with me. I know I have so many questions, doubts, and fears. Thank you for coming to me again today, reaching out in love to draw me close to you. Be with me in my thinking, relationships, decision-making, and actions today. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
Today’s devotion is based on Romans 12:1 “Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God-- this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is-- his good, pleasing and perfect will.”
I chose this verse because I am afraid too many Christians today believe worshiping God takes place only on Sunday morning. True and proper worship is living one’s life in a God-pleasing manner. Thus loving and caring about your neighbor, that is all who are in need, is worshiping God. That is God’s will.
Please pray with me the prayer for today. Heavenly Father, creator, and sustainer of all things, seen and unseen, help me, through your encouraging words live my life in such a way that all I do gives you glory. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
Do not seek revenge
Today's devotion is based on Romans 12:19-21. "Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God's wrath, for it is written: "It is mine to avenge; I will repay," says the Lord. On the contrary: "If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head. Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good."
As Christians, God's Word prohibits us from taking revenge on someone. That is why the part of the verses above, "In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head." is so welcome to our ears. For, after all, God is telling us that by doing good to those who have harmed us, we are getting revenge on them.
In Paul's time, this saying meant doing good toward them changes them so that their mind and actions toward us are changed to good toward us. We, thus, have no reason to get revenge on them.
Please pray with me the prayer for today. Heavenly Father, creator and sustainer of all things, seen and unseen, you know how I instinctively will desire revenge on those who have hurt me somehow. Help me through your Word to realize that is not your desire for me. In Jesus' name, I pray. Amen
God's perfect will
Today's devotion is based on Romans 12:1 "Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God-- this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is-- his good, pleasing and perfect will."
What is true and proper worship? It is living one's life in a God-pleasing manner. Thus, loving and caring about your neighbor, who is all in need, is worshiping God. That is God's will. I bring this up this morning because I am afraid many Christians today believe worshiping God takes place only on Sunday morning.
Today's devotion is based on Romans 11:33-12:1 "Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable his judgments and his paths beyond tracing out! "Who has known the mind of the Lord? Or who has been his counselor?" "Who has ever given to God that God should repay them?" For from him and through him and for him are all things. To him be the glory forever! Amen."
I like these verses for they remind me that when I begin to believe that I am the master of life because I know what is best for me, unlike God, I am limited in my understanding, both by intellect and sin, that God knows the future while I don't know the next second.
Please pray with me the prayer for today. Heavenly Father, creator, and sustainer of all things, seen and unseen, thank you for giving me Your holy Word so that I can not only know of Your love but Your perfect knowledge of all things, past, present, and future. Please help me to continue in my faith since your way is the right way in this life and the next. In Jesus' name, I pray. Amen.
Today’s devotion is based on Romans 10:9,10: “If you declare with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.”
I love these verses for they simply say believing in Jesus is Lord is all that is needed to be saved. This belief is shown in your words of confession. There is nothing more to do to be saved.
Please pray with me the prayer for today. Heavenly Father, creator, and sustainer of all things, seen and unseen, Jesus is Lord. I believe this wholeheartedly. I struggle with showing that faith in my words and deeds and ask you to help me live more like Christ. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.