This is why we never give up

“That is why we never give up. Though our bodies are dying, our spirits are being renewed every day.” 2 Corinthians‬ ‭4:16‬ ‭NLT‬‬

All of us get weary and tired and face troubles. In these times passages like 2 Corinthians 4:16-18 can give us some comfort. Today I was reminded of four things…

1. Even thought our human bodies are fading away and dying, our Spirits are being renewed everyday by God (v16)

2. As big as they seem right now, our current problems and struggles are very small compared to the glory that awaits us for all eternity (v17)

3. Life works best when we don’t have our total focus on the problems or trials we face, we need to work through them, but we need to focus on the eternal realities of God and His Kingdom (v18)

4. We focus on this because one day all we can see and touch will pass away, and the things that God has promised us will fully be ours (v18)

We need to focus on the future glory, not the current struggles!

Prayer

Dear God, at times I feel overcome by the problems and struggles of this life. I pray that in these times You will speak to me and encourage me from Your Word in the Bible. I pray that You will help me to focus on the true realities of the future glory of Your eternal Kingdom. Help me to also remember that even though my body is fading away, my Spirit is being renewed day by day. I ask this in Jesus’ name, Amen.

A glimpse in to my personal devotions

Over the years I have tried different devotional ideas and booklets. But the best by far is simply interacting with the Bible itself.

I open the Bible, pray and ask the Holy Spirit to speak and then read the passage. And then I record my thoughts in my journal.

I see where the passage naturally breaks and I look for key thoughts, prayers, commands or things I can apply to my life.

In the attached photo you can see the passage I read, the title I gave it in my devotions, and the main points that spoke to me.

You will see the headings – not stopped praying for you, then, also pray and for He. These gave me things to hang off the blessings in the text.

Often these thoughts from my devotions become blog posts, short talks or even sermons.

I would encourage you to try it and see if it helps you as much as it helped me.

Blessings,
Dave

A glimpse in to my personal devotions

Over the years I have tried different devotional ideas and booklets. But the best by far is simply interacting with the Bible itself.

I open the Bible, pray and ask the Holy Spirit to speak and then read the passage. And then I record my thoughts in my journal.

I see where the passage naturally breaks and I look for key thoughts, prayers, commands or things I can apply to my life.

In the attached photo you can see the passage I read, the title I gave it in my devotions, and the main points that spoke to me.

You will see the headings – not stopped praying for you, then, also pray and for He. These gave me things to hang off the blessings in the text.

Often these thoughts from my devotions become blog posts, short talks or even sermons.

I would encourage you to try it and see if it helps you as much as it helped me.

Blessings,
Dave

Be cheerful

Today I am posting “Desiderata” (Latin for “desired things”), a prose poem written in December 1933 by Max Ehrmann about attaining happiness in life. If you have never read it before, I’m sure you will find it uplifting.

Go placidly amid the noise and the haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence. As far as possible without surrender be on good terms with all persons. Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even to the dull and the ignorant, they too have their story. Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexations to the spirit.

If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain or bitter; for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself. Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans. Keep interested in your own career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.

Exercise caution in your business affairs, for the world is full of trickery. But let not this blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals, and everywhere life is full of heroism.

Be yourself. Especially do not feign affection. Neither be cynical about love; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass. Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth.

Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune. But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings. Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.

Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. And whatever your labors and aspirations in the noisy confusion of life, keep peace in your soul. With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams; it is still a beautiful world.

Be cheerful.

(Copied from Rylisms devotion 10 December from E-sword)

God’s blessings in the Beatitudes

I was reading through the beatitudes for my devotions this morning. They are found in. Matthew 5:3-10.

As I was reading through today I realised afresh how God blesses us in our lives. Here are some of my notes.

1. When we recognise our need for Him – He gives us the Kingdom

2. When we mourn – He gives us comfort

3. When we are humble – He gives us the earth as an inheritance

4. When we hunger and thirst for justice – He gives us satisfaction

5. When we show mercy – He shows us mercy

6. When we are pure at heart – He shows us Himself

7. When we work for peace – He calls us His children

8. When we are persecuted – He gives us the Kingdom

So many blessings. So much favour. So much comfort.

One thing I also noticed today was the bookmarks at the beginning and the end. When we recognise our need for Him or are persecuted, He gives us the Kingdom.

Be blessed by the beatitudes today!

Dave

Your unfailing love

Psalm 36:5-9 NLT – Your unfailing love, O LORD, is as vast as the heavens; your faithfulness reaches beyond the clouds. [6] Your righteousness is like the mighty mountains, your justice like the ocean depths. You care for people and animals alike, O LORD. [7] How precious is your unfailing love, O God! All humanity finds shelter in the shadow of your wings. [8] You feed them from the abundance of your own house, letting them drink from your river of delights. [9] For you are the fountain of life, the light by which we see.

I read this passage as a part of my devotions this morning. I had to read it over and over. I love the way it talks about God’s unfailing love. It gives us a picture of just how deep and wide and vast it is. It even says that all humanity finds shelter in the shadow of His wings and He provides for us all out of His abundance. I couldn’t imagine a world without God. I wouldn’t want to! He truly is the fountain of life and the light by which we see.

Prayer

Lord God, thank You for Your unfailing love. It is so precious to me. I thank You that You provide for our needs out of the abundance and I can find shelter under Your wings. You truly are the fountain of life and the light of my life. Amen.

A day is coming

Zechariah 14:9 NLT – And the LORD will be king over all the earth. On that day there will be one LORD-his name alone will be worshiped.

This verse talks about a day when all false gods that people worship and all false religions will be no more. There will be no cults, no worldly charismatic leaders who deceive people and no doubt who the true God is. It will be a day when only He is worshipped and He will rule and reign over all the earth. As a Jesus follower I look forward to this day. How about you?

Prayer

Dear God, I thank You that You are the one true God who reigns supreme. You are far above all other false gods and worldly leaders. I look forward to the day when You come in power and glory and You alone are the one who is worshipped. Amen.

A triple-braided cord

Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 NLT says, “Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. [10] If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble. [11] Likewise, two people lying close together can keep each other warm. But how can one be warm alone? [12] A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken.”

I have found over the years it helps to have good people around you. Having family, friends, workmates who have your back makes a big difference. As today’s passage says having people around you can help you to succeed, help you up if you fall down, keep you warm in cold trying conditions, and even fight with you if needed. It reminds us of the importance of having good people around us by using the image of a triple-braided cord being stronger. Three interwoven cords are way stronger than a single thread.

Prayer

Lord, I pray that I will always have good people around me. I thank You for the good people who are now in my life. I pray that You will help us to help each other and as we follow You. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

All and all

Psalm 139:1-3 NLT – O LORD, you have examined my heart and know everything about me. [2] You know when I sit down or stand up. You know my thoughts even when I’m far away. [3] You see me when I travel and when I rest at home. You know everything I do.

God knows us inside out. He knows everything about us. These verses tell us He examines our hearts and knows our thoughts. In spite of knowing everything about us, He loves us deeply. So much so, that He moved heaven and earth to secure a place for us in heaven when Jesus died for us. It is reasurring that we don’t have to wear a mask with God like we do with people sometimes. He knows ALL and He loves ALL of us.

Dear God, thank You that You love me just as I am. It gives me comfort to know that You have examinded my heart and You know my thoughts, and You still love me. Thank You Jesus died for me and for preapring a place for me in heaven. Amen.

He has always been there

Psalm 71:5-6 NLT – O Lord, you alone are my hope. I’ve trusted you, O LORD, from childhood. [6] Yes, you have been with me from birth; from my mother’s womb you have cared for me. No wonder I am always praising you!

God has always been there. Even from before our birth. He has always cared for us, even though we may not have realised. I came to Christ in my early 20s. I have never really thought about God until then. But looking back I can see His fingerprints throughout my early life. He was there looking after me through the good times and the bad. He brought people into my life to help me and He gently nudged me in His direction. I am so thankful.

Dear God, thank You that You have always been there. Even before I was born You were there. Thank You for loving and caring for me right throughout my life. Amen.