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    Posted: Apr 19 2015 at 1:23pm

Do You Want to Get Well?
 
 
There was a certain man there who had suffered with a deep-seated and lingering disorder for thirty-eight years. When Jesus noticed him lying there [helpless], knowing that he had already been a long time in that condition, He said to him, Do you want to become well? [Are you really in earnest about getting well?]
John 5:5-6
 
 

Isn't this an amazing question for Jesus to ask this poor man who had been sick for thirty-eight long years: "Do you really want to become well?" That is the Lord's question to you as you read these words right now. Do you know there are people who really don't want to get well? They just want to talk about their problem. Are you one of those people?

Sometimes people get addicted to having a problem. It becomes their identity, their life. It defines everything they think and say and do. If you have a "deep-seated and lingering disorder," the Lord wants you to know that it does not have to be the central focal point of your entire existence. He wants you to trust Him and cooperate with Him as He leads you to victory over that problem one step at a time. Don't try to use your problem as a means of getting sympathy.

We get angry at those who tell us the truth. And the truth is that before we can get well, we must really want to be well: body, soul, and spirit. We must want to enough that we are willing to hear and accept truth.

Each of us must learn to follow God's personal plan for us. Whatever our problem may be, God has promised to meet our need and to repay us for our loss. Facing truth is the key to unlocking prison doors that may have held us in bondage.

Be blessed , Debra
"Life is God's gift to you; what you become is your gift to Him."
Praying His Promises bless your day!
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Today's Topic: It's Not Over Until God Says It's Over
Author: Jerry Savelle
Verse(s): Psalms 39:4

Today's Confession: My ending will be better than my beginning.

Devotional:
I like to say; "Don't ever rule God out." Let Him have the last say. Your situation may look so impossible at this moment that you have decided to accept the worst. King David did that one time. "Tell me, what's going on, GOD? How long do I have to live? Give me the bad news!" (Ps. 39:4, THE MESSAGE).

David was saying, "Give it to me. Just give me the worst." This is what a lot of people do. They accept defeat as final when defeat is not inevitable. Don't say, "Okay, I will just learn to live with this. I guess this is my lot in life. That stuff may work for some, but not for all of us. I guess I'm one of the ones it doesn't work for." It is going to work for you if you develop staying power; if you hold on to the Word of God; if you don't cast away your confidence.

We don't know how God is going to bring it all together for us. In fact, most of the time, we don't have a clue. Be honest. When God has given you a breakthrough, did you know in advance how He was going to do it? Of course not. We just have to let God be God. He is smarter than us anyway. And He's got a number of ways that He can meet your need without you trying to figure it out on your own.

"Endings are better than beginnings. Sticking to it is better than standing out" (Eccles. 7:8, THE MESSAGE). Believe that your situation is going to get better. Believe that it's going to turn out better than you can ask or think. You have to ask yourself where your staying power is. Have you let go of it or are you holding fast? We have to stay focused on the end of the Lord. This is what we are waiting for.

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What Will You Do with Jesus?
 
 
READ | John 10:22-30

Jesus is the most important and controversial person in all of human history; His name stirs up virulent hatred in some people and radical devotion in others.

Jesus claimed to be the Son of God. As a result, every person on earth must decide what to do with Him. He didn't leave us the option of ignoring Him or washing our hands of the matter. There are really just two choices: believe Him or reject Him. Rejection will result in judgment and eternal separation from God (John 3:18), but Jesus promises eternal life to those who trust in Him.

Believers must also decide what they will do with Jesus after salvation. Faith in Him isn't just the way to eternal life in heaven; it is also to be our way of life here and now. If we believe in Jesus, we will:

Follow Him. Christ's sheep hear His voice and submit to His leadership.

Worship Him. As we grow in our love for and trust in the Savior, our natural response will be to adore and praise Him.

Share Him. We should want everyone to know this wonderful God who rescued us and transformed our lives.

Look for His coming. To be with Jesus face to face is our greatest hope and joy.

This life is only a breath in comparison to the time we'll spend with Him in eternity.

If you have never made a decision about Jesus, the best time to do so is right now. And if you already are His follower, look for ways to demonstrate your faith in Him today. Train yourself to be on the lookout for opportunities to obey Him, worship Him, and share the good news with others.

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Today's Prayer
Dear Lord, The Book of James (chapter 3) tells me all about the tongue. It's such a little member of the body, but it can do so much harm. We can speak words that bless You and words that curse man who is made in Your image. A few words can uplift, encourage, and do positive things in a person's life and a few words can also put down, discourage, and ruin a person's life. Please forgive me of allowing any words to leave my mouth that would harm others and dishonor You. I pray that my words will be honest and positive; that they will inspire and challenge others to greatness. Show me who You want me to encourage through my words today. Please help me to affirm someone close to me today, that they will be blessed and You will be glorified. In Jesus' name I pray, amen.


Graduate Level Christianity
TGIF Today God Is First Volume 2, by Os Hillman
05-05-2009

"Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you" (Matt. 5:44).

There was a man who had become a friend and mentor to me, but a conflict arose between us that we were unable to resolve. I never imagined that this man would go from being one of my best friends to an enemy. I asked God to show me how I should treat this man, and the words of Jesus came to mind, "Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you."

"Lord," I said, "surely you don't mean I'm to love this man! Not after the way he's hurt me and refused to reconcile!"

As I argued with God, I remembered that Jesus, before He was betrayed, got down on his knees and washed the feet of Judas Iscariot, His enemy. The moment that scene came to my mind, I knew what God was calling me to do. I had to wash the feet of my Judas.

This man who had been my friend and mentor had also been a client of my advertising agency. He was a Christian author and speaker, and I decided to bless this man by continuing to promote his ministry and his books.

Did he ever come back to me and reconcile? Yes, seven years later. But even if he had never reconciled with me, I knew that I did what God called me to do. I washed the feet of my Judas. I passed the test.

God doesn't promise that if we forgive there will be a happy ending. He doesn't promise that the man who refuses to pay a bill will suddenly write a check. He doesn't promise that the one who rejects reconciliation will instantly soften his heart. Jesus forgave his executioners, but that didn't keep them from nailing Him to the cross.

The Graduate Level Test is not about getting the results we want. It's about proving that we trust God enough to forgive our Judases. It's a graduate-level course in Christian obedience. But I believe that every leader whom God uses in a significant way must pass the Judas Test.

God wants to know if we are willing to be imitators of Jesus. How can we say we are followers of Christ if we won't wash the feet of our Judases?

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Today's Prayer
God, today, I want to make time to pray for all the people I see on a regular basis: my co-workers (say names), my family (say names), my friends (say names), my neighbors (say names), my church leaders (say names). You know every need they have. I pray that You would give encouragement to the discouraged, good health to the unhealthy, money for the financially needy, peace to the restless, guidance to the lost or searching, and that You would meet any special needs that each of these people may have right now. God, I pray for their spiritual as well as physical needs. Work through me as you see fit to accomplish your plan and meet these needs. Please give me wisdom and guidance to know your will and help me to realize where there is a need to which I can minister. I thank You God, for hearing this prayer and for your answers. In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.
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Today's Topic: NEVER FORSAKEN
Verse(s): John 14:27

Today's Confession: "God is in control of my life and He won't let me down!"

Devotional:
Many times when we face storms, or hard times in our lives, we tend to "throw out" our Bible lessons. We forget about our faith. In Mark 4, we see Jesus telling His disciples to get in the boat because they were going to the other side. But have you ever noticed what happened? Immediately a storm came. And the disciples were afraid.

Now, Jesus fully intended for those men to get Him to the other side. It didn't matter if the weather was clear or a storm was raging, He wanted them to take the Word and get Him to the other side! But, the disciples panicked.

"...And he (Jesus) was in the hinder part of the ship, asleep on a pillow: and they awake him, and say unto him, Master, carest thou not that we perish?" Mark 4:38

The disciples were so frightened to the point that they thought Jesus didn't care.

I can tell you that if anybody cares about you, it's Jesus, and He will not forsake you.

The fact that Jesus was asleep in the ship during a MEGA storm indicates to me that as far as He is concerned, everything is under control. It may not look like it in the natural, but it's under control.

Isn't it amazing that Jesus was sleeping during this storm! This ship is being tossed to and fro, there's water in the boat, surely it's splashing over on Jesus, but He's still asleep. They had to wake Him up.

When was the last time you slept through a storm? I'm talking about everything broke loose in your life, and yet you go to bed with the peace of God, wake up with the joy of the Lord, and somebody says to you, "Wow! Wasn't that an awful storm!" And you say, "Did we have a storm?" Jesus wants you to have that kind of peace. No matter what is going on in your life, He is in control. Trust that He won't let you drown!

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote sexyandfamous Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Apr 05 2015 at 1:31pm
Today's Topic: BE GLAD NOW
Author: Jerry Savelle
Verse(s): Joel 2:21

Today's Confession: Thank You Father that You are good and You have turned the tide on my behalf!

Devotional:
Did you know that it doesn't take any more energy to be positive than it does to be negative. We don't have to psych ourselves out. It's like driving a car. It doesn't take more effort to put it in reverse than it does to put it in drive. You don't have to sit there and pray, "Oh God, give me the energy to put this thing in reverse." No, you just shift the gears and it's done. It is all about what you choose to do.

"Don't be afraid, my people! Be glad now and rejoice because the LORD has done great things" (Joel 2:21, NLT). If you truly believe that God is about to cause some good things to come your way, then you have to act as though it is already happening. Act on what Joel wrote. Notice he didn't say, "When good things come, be glad and rejoice." He said, "Be glad and rejoice first. Often we want to wait until we can see the manifestation before we rejoice and be glad. But that's backwards in the mind of God.

You need to get rid of fear, and start being glad and start rejoicing, even if in the natural it doesn't appear that there is anything to rejoice about. This is where staying power kicks in. This is where desire kicks in. This is where faith kicks. We do it even if we don't feel like it. We do it even if in our mind it looks foolish. We do it even if others think we're crazy. Show the devil through your rejoicing and being glad that you no longer believe his lies. Show him that there is no way that he is going to keep you down. Show him that you believe what God says more than what he says.

"Worship GOD if you want the best; worship opens doors to all his goodness." (Ps. 34:9, THE MESSAGE)

"Thank GOD because He's good. . . . The hand of GOD has turned the tide! The hand of GOD is raised in victory! The hand of GOD has turned the tide!" (Ps. 118:1,15-16, THE MESSAGE)

"Hallelujah! It's a good thing to sing praise to our God. . . . GOD puts the fallen on their feet again" (Ps. 147:1,6, THE MESSAGE)

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote sexyandfamous Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Apr 05 2015 at 1:21pm
The Importance of Worship
Bishop Walter S. Thomas

Psalm 100:2

Worship is the environment in which the saint lives and lives abundantly. The heroes and sheroes of the Bible understood that it was worship that gave them access to the very presence of God and allowed them to enter the most holy places and be blessed. Isaiah said that he saw the Lord and the vision he had was one of both awe and fear. He saw the Lord high and lifted up and he saw his himself as one who did not deserve to be in God's presence. Worship is an eye opener for all of us.

The psalmist breaks out into praise just thinking about the Lord and as such takes time to remind all who are in his sphere of influence to worship the lord. He admonishes and encourages all to spend quality time in the very presence of the Lord allowing God to bathe them in the glory of the Spirit. Moreover, this is not some half hearted action; it is one we do with festive excitement and gladness. We are happy just to be in his presence.

How important is it for you to spend time with God and to spend that time acknowledging your love for him? This is a critical question. It will guide and govern our daily activities. It will cause us to change the plan of every day and cause each day to reflect our love and respect for the Lord. I believe this is a change we need to make. We do love the Lord, but we do not always show it in our worship. I do not mean that we do not shout or cry. I mean we take our relationship with God for granted and do not spend the quality time with God that we should. We call God now and then; we do not seek another minute in His presence.

Let this be a different day and start of different days. Let this day be marked by our worship and let God know on a daily basis that we can not live without Him, nor do we want to. It's time for us to rise up and "worship the Lord with gladness."

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Today's Topic: Don't Be Led By Your Feelings
Author: Terri Savelle Foy
Verse(s): Jude 1:20

Today's Confession: I'm determined to pray at least 2 minutes in the Holy Spirit daily.

Devotional:
Jude 1:20 (Amplified Bible) But you, beloved, build yourselves up [founded] on your most holy faith [[a]make progress, rise like an edifice higher and higher], praying in the Holy Spirit;

I know what its like to think that God could never possibly restore what's been lost, what's been torn apart or broken in your life. I know that feeling. I also know that you cannot lose your hope you have to believe and you cannot let your feelings make the decisions in your life. You cannot be led by your feelings because your feelings will lie to you. They will try to convince you that what you are experiencing is absolutely hopeless and it could never be restored. But that's a lie.

One of the greatest gifts that God has given you to bring hope back to your life is the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is called the Comforter, the Strengthener, the Helper. We all know that but it's a matter of actually picking up that gift that God's given us and using it. It's a matter of actually making yourself pray in the Holy Spirit. I've heard that the Holy Spirit is the Comforter my whole life but how many times do we actually go into another room when all hell breaks loose in our lives and make ourselves pray in the Holy Spirit?

The Holy Spirit is our Comforter. He's a gift that God's given us and if He's just laying there in your life and you are not using that gift then whose fault is it? We have to take the time, make the effort to just turn the TV off, put the magazine down and go in some room by our self and even if it's for two minutes, pray in the Holy Spirit. Like Jude 20 says build yourself up. You build yourself up on your most holy faith praying in the Holy Spirit.

I want to encourage you to use the gift God's given you. Use your prayer language and watch what God will do. Then the comfort of the Holy Spirit will come on you and it will bring peace that passes all human understanding in your life.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote sexyandfamous Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Mar 15 2015 at 1:20pm

Friendship with the Lord
 
 
Would you like to know God and be sure that you're following His will? More than likely your answer is "yes." But even if you read the Bible faithfully and pray daily, it may seem as though something is lacking in your relationship with Him.

Perhaps you believe in God's love. But have you experienced the depth of His affection in an intimate and personal way? Until a person begins to understand His nature and character, a spiritual window shade will remain closed over that individual's life. Knowing right from wrong in certain areas is beneficial, but it's important to know why God desires a certain lifestyle from His followers. Once you begin to understand the way the Lord thinks and operates, you will know Him better and be able to grasp that His love is eternal. As your knowledge of God deepens, so will the desire to please Him.

What is required?

The Father reveals Himself to those who hunger to know Him. Consider how Moses responded to the burning bush: he drew near to it and was eager to know the one true God. Later he prayed, "If I have found favor in Your sight, let me know Your ways that I may know You so that I may find favor in Your sight" (Exodus 33:13, emphasis added). It is obvious that Moses had one clear goal: to know his Creator, not simply know about Him. He wanted to relate to God on an intimate level -something much deeper than simply realizing that He exists. Moses' quest to know the Lord led him to a relationship with the Almighty that changed his life forever.

In order to draw near to God, we must be willing to seek Him fervently, rather than pursuing solely our own comfort or ambitions. For example, David passionately sought the Lord and His ways. He wrote, "As the deer pants for water brooks, so my soul pants for You, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God" (Psalm 42:1-2). As a result, he became the person the Lord called "a man after my own heart" (Acts 13:22 NIV).

 

Be blessed , Debra

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