<![CDATA[SAINTJOHNLUTHERAN EMPORIAVA.COM - Daily Devotion]]>Thu, 08 Jun 2023 08:35:03 -0400Weebly<![CDATA[God's team]]>Wed, 07 Jun 2023 13:00:00 GMThttp://saintjohnlutheranemporiava.com/daily-devotion/gods-team​6-7-23
God's team
Today's devotion is based on Matthew 28:18-20, "Then Jesus came to them and said, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age."
Thankfully, there is one team you can be sure you belong–God's team. In fact, two thousand years ago, Jesus commanded his followers to tell people about God's team and his desire for them to be on it.
You might wonder, "Am I really qualified to be on God's team?" The truth is, you're not. No one is. But Jesus' life, death, and resurrection qualify us to be on God's team. That's why Jesus told his followers to go to all nations. It doesn't matter your race or ethnicity, whether you are young or old, rich or poor, male or female. God wants all people on his team, and Jesus has done everything necessary for them to be on God's team. What team are you on?
Please pray with me: Lord God, thank you for bringing sinners like me into your team. Amen.
<![CDATA[To whom do you give your loyality?]]>Tue, 06 Jun 2023 13:30:00 GMThttp://saintjohnlutheranemporiava.com/daily-devotion/to-whom-do-you-give-your-loyality​6-6-23
To whom do you give your loyalty?
Today's devotion is based on Acts 2:21, "Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved."

As we work our way through life, you and I develop all kinds of loyalties. There is loyalty to family, loyalty to friends, loyalty to mentors and employers, co-workers, and colleagues. But if our loyalty to human beings begins to take the place of our Savior from sin, we have drifted into a place where our Lord does not want us to be.

Consider where your loyalties lie. Give them some serious thought. Repent of those loyalties that have clouded your focus on Jesus. Be washed in his blood. And with fresh clarity, fix your eyes on the only Lord of life and death there is, for "everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved."

Please pray with me: Forgive me, Lord Jesus, for the misguided loyalties that have distracted me from you. Please fill me with your Spirit. Renew the zeal of my loyalty to you. Amen.

<![CDATA[How to train yourself to live a godly life]]>Mon, 05 Jun 2023 13:00:00 GMThttp://saintjohnlutheranemporiava.com/daily-devotion/how-to-train-yourself-to-live-a-godly-life​6-5-23
How to train yourself to live a godly life.
Today's devotion is based on 1 Timothy 4:7, "Have nothing to do with godless myths and old wives' tales; rather, train yourself to be godly."
You have probably heard some version of the saying, 'Watch your thoughts; they become your words. Watch your words; they become your actions. Watch your actions; they shape your life.' Today's verse is a reminder to dissect the casual phrases that make their way into our speech and reflect on our attitude and heart-setting. It is often helpful to ask, 'Does what I am hearing or thinking align with God's word and the hope of the gospel?'
Please pray with me: Loving God, as the heavens are high above the earth, your ways are higher than my ways, and your thoughts are higher than my thoughts or the thoughts of this current age. Give me discipline and spiritual acuity so that I may become more godly. Amen.
<![CDATA[Living in unity]]>Sun, 04 Jun 2023 10:05:07 GMThttp://saintjohnlutheranemporiava.com/daily-devotion/living-in-unity​6-4-23
Living in unity
Today's devotion is based on Genesis 1:26,27: "Then God said, "Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish of the sea and the birds in the sky and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground." So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them."
More than one person has reached a certain point in life when they asked themselves, " The Bible tells us that we have been placed here by a perfect and loving God. He made us do good, praise him, and live for him in thanks for all he has given and done for us.
Please pray with me: Heavenly Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, move my lips to praise you and my heart to trust in you all my days. Amen.
<![CDATA[June 03rd, 2023]]>Sat, 03 Jun 2023 13:00:00 GMThttp://saintjohnlutheranemporiava.com/daily-devotion/june-03rd-20236-3-23
The truth of the Bible's teachings
Today's devotion is based on 1 Timothy 1:3,4: "Command certain people not to teach false doctrines any longer or to devote themselves to myths and endless genealogies. Such things promote controversial speculations rather than advancing God's work – which is by faith." 
I often hear people say that we shouldn't be divided on doctrine; instead, we should focus on the 'main thing' of faith in Jesus and the salvation that comes through the gift of faith. It is easy to see doctrine as limiting or hindering our faith growth and mission. Getting caught up in doctrinal issues can even seem like a waste of time and energy. However, the Bible tells us that true doctrine is essential to expressing God's love.
What we believe and teach is reflected in the practices we have in our church. There are many examples of poor doctrine that have hurt people. Poor doctrine in terms of marriage meant that some were trapped in abusive marriages. Over-emphasizing the sanctified life has sometimes created a new legalism, leading to anxiety. On the other hand, sound doctrine is a means for us to experience God's love. May we seek sound doctrine together as God's Church.
Please pray with me: Father God, help us all work together to teach and love good doctrine for your glory and our blessing. Amen.
<![CDATA[Impossible love]]>Fri, 02 Jun 2023 10:56:31 GMThttp://saintjohnlutheranemporiava.com/daily-devotion/impossible-love4196390Today’s daily devotion is based on John 13:34,  “As I have loved you, so you must love one another.”

When God commands us to love one another as he has loved us, he gives us no small task. He says to love with the love that he has shown to us. How can we do that? We can do the kinds of things that will make sure even death will not limit our love. If you want to love your spouse, pray for and encourage their faith. If you want to love your child, make sure that they grow up in a place where their faith can be nurtured. If you want to love your neighbor, do the kinds of things that allow you to share with them the hope you have in Jesus. Helping those you love to be in the Word of Christ and to follow his commands is one of the greatest expressions of love because it is the only thing that is truly limitless.

Please pray with me, Father, thank you for loving us so much that you sent Jesus. Help us to love with the limitless love you have shown to us. Amen.]]>
<![CDATA[Praying for our leaders]]>Thu, 01 Jun 2023 13:00:00 GMThttp://saintjohnlutheranemporiava.com/daily-devotion/praying-for-our-leaders5-1-23

Today's devotion is based on 1 Timothy 2:1,2, "I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession, and thanksgiving be made for all people – for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness."
What do we do as Christians when leaders enact policies we disagree with? As our world becomes increasingly anti-Christian, we will find time and again that our leaders do not represent our views and values.
Paul gives clear instructions here that we are responsible for praying for our leaders despite their policies. We can disagree with our government and even campaign against them at an election; that is our right as citizens. But we are called to pray for those in authority; that is our responsibility as Christians.
Please pray with me: Lord of all, we pray for our leaders today and ask that they administer power for the good of all and in line with your will. In Jesus' name, I pray. Amen.
<![CDATA[Jesus, the name above all names]]>Wed, 31 May 2023 12:28:10 GMThttp://saintjohnlutheranemporiava.com/daily-devotion/jesus-the-name-above-all-names​5-31-23
Jesus, the name above all names
Today's devotion is based on Acts 2:21, "Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved."
Some names can make you smile, laugh, and bathe in warm memories. Other names may have the power to make you wince and grow silent. That is how potent a name can be. That brings us to the most powerful name there is. When you and I take even a moment to meditate on the name of our Lord, his truth and beauty arise. There is his goodness, his justice, his mercy, his faithfulness, his power, his wisdom, his eternity, and his glory. And there is his grace, his undeserved love for you and me in Jesus Christ.
And that's why the name of our Lord is something more. The name of our Lord is not simply a trigger that delivers to my mind all the profound truths His Word has revealed. The name of the Lord is the name that saves my soul.
Please pray with me: Lord Jesus, by your Spirit, move me to call on your name every single day. Amen.]]>
<![CDATA[Living in the presence of God]]>Tue, 30 May 2023 12:13:37 GMThttp://saintjohnlutheranemporiava.com/daily-devotion/living-in-the-presence-of-god​5-30-23
Living in the presence o God
Today's devotion is based on 1 Thessalonians 5:6, “Let us not be like “others, who are asleep, but let us be awake and sober.”
The Bible encourages us to live our life attentive to God’s action and refreshed by his presence. Paul talks about the end times and says that no one can predict the time of the Lord’s return, but knowing that he will return will change the way we live now. Our lives are shaped by the truth that God himself is invested in what happens to us now as we await the Day of the Lord. May his Spirit lead and comfort us.
Please pray with me: Dear Lord, thank you for the promise of your return and your presence. Clear our minds and calm our hearts as we live enlivened by your Spirit. Amen.
<![CDATA[The power of the Holy Spirit]]>Mon, 29 May 2023 12:09:54 GMThttp://saintjohnlutheranemporiava.com/daily-devotion/the-power-of-the-holy-spirit2474805​5-29-23
Fill me, Holy Spirit
Today's devotion is based on Acts 2:41: "Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand were added to their number that day."
When the Holy Spirit revealed himself on that first Pentecost Sunday, the people of Jerusalem witnessed a dramatic miracle. They heard men speak languages they had never studied before.
Anyone who has attempted to learn another language will verify how amazing a miracle it was when those mostly unschooled disciples started speaking all the world's different languages—without ever cracking a book.
But, the greatest Pentecost miracle occurred later than all the rest. The Bible tells us that "about three thousand were added to their number that day." think of it! Three thousand people raised from death to life! Three thousand people added to God's workforce to carry out our Savior's Great Commission to "Go and make disciples of all nations." there was no comparison with the miracle of faith that the Holy Spirit worked through God's Word that day.
That greatest Pentecost miracle continues today. The Holy Spirit bolsters and strengthens our hearts when we hear and read God's Word. When we speak God's Word, the Spirit works to bring people from death to eternal life. When used with God's Word, a simple splash of water in Baptism, a morsel of bread, and a sip of wine in the Lord's Supper creates and strengthens God's gift of faith. The Holy Spirit continues the greatest Pentecost miracle as we use and share God's Word and sacraments.
Please pray with me: Holy Spirit, through your Word and sacrament, continue to work your miracle of faith in my heart. In Jesus' name, I pray. Amen.