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Loving God

Today's Message

{ Day 238 }

Lift up your eyes and look about you: All assemble and come to you; your sons come from afar, and your daughters are carried on the arm. Then you will look and be radiant, your heart will throb and swell with joy; the wealth on the seas will be brought to you, to you the riches of the nations will come. —Isaiah 60:4-5

A great company of billions of believers will gather together on the sea of glass for the long-awaited wedding day. It's significant that human history ends with the marriage supper of the Lamb, one of the very few corporate responses of the church to Jesus described in the Word of God. On that last day we will have fully understood Jesus's leadership over history. His perfect leadership will have produced a bride that says with a glad tongue, "Rejoice and be glad, for the marriage of the Lamb has come!" We will rejoice with absolute gladness. We will erupt with joy. Under the leadership of Jesus, the human heart always erupts with joy. This is His desire for us even on this side of eternity.

{ PRAYER STARTER }

Father, Your Word teaches me that the wedding day of Your Son and His bride will be a glorious celebration beyond my human comprehension. My heart is filled with longing and anticipation, and I'm overwhelmed with love for my Bridegroom, Your precious Son.

When Jesus has His way, He makes hearts glad.

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Daily Breakthroughs

Today's Message

Put Your Past Behind You

Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. —Philippians 3:13-14

Many people need to be delivered from the skeletons of their past. "Those things which are behind" may include failed marriages, broken promises, failures, disappointments, setbacks, and betrayals.

You can be standing waist high in ocean water and watch as water begins to ebb quietly away from you-.-.-.-then the force of the wave begins to increase, propelling you forward.

Just as the tide pulls the water back, forming a wave of power, God draws you to Himself.

Don't fight against God's pulling and tugging at your spirit. Allow yourself to be drawn to Him and enveloped in His presence. Trust Him with your very life, and He will propel you forward into your destiny.

Put all of your past behind you. Bury it under His mercy and grace. Refuse to dig it up again or to listen to the old, tired accusations of the devil.

Jesus, give me the strength to look forward and not look back.
Keep me from dredging up my past sin which You have
already forgiven and forgotten. Keep my
heart fixed on You. Amen.

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By Love Transformed

Today's Message

The Lord Is Always Before You

I have set the Lord always before me. Because he is at my right hand, I will not be shaken. —Psalm 16:8

I would like to discuss the circumstances of unhappy employment, for various circumstances can lie behind this. For some, a lack of education has meant that they will always be stuck in a certain kind of job.

Some travel considerable distances to get just what work they can find. Then, after they get there, it is really dull. They dread arriving, they look forward to leaving, and they look forward to Fridays and hate Mondays. On top of that they have to work hard and inconvenient hours. In other words, they experience a lack of fulfillment. Sometimes the way they are treated is degrading. And as for a bit of prestige? It is out of the question. No prestige. But that was how it was for Joseph, too.

But there is some compensation in unhappy employment. I don't refer to being paid a little extra or getting double pay for overtime. I am talking here about a different kind of compensation. The Bible says Potiphar bought Joseph from the Ishmaelites who had taken him to Egypt, but the Lord was with Joseph (Gen. 39:2). I call that a wonderful compensation! Now if I can get this point across, it could change everything and possibly give a person a different perspective. Unhappy employment is not unusual. What is unusual is the fact that the Lord is with you.

One of the greatest things you can ever learn as a Christian is to remember that you have the presence of God. Why does it say the psalmist "set the Lord" before himself? It means that he had to remind himself that the Lord was there. You see, setting the Lord before him didn't mean that by doing this the Lord managed to get there on time. No, the Lord was already there, because David went on to say, "Because he is on my right hand." The phrase "I have set the Lord" means that David put himself in a frame of mind to remind himself that the Lord was already there. "I have set the Lord always before me."

And if you can do this in the toughest moment and in the loneliest moment, then you know He is there. Remind yourself, He is there.

Excerpted from The Thorn in the Flesh (Charisma House, 2004).

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Around the Word in 365 Days

Today's Message

What Would Jesus Do?

1 Corinthians 10:15-11:2 Many today are wearing a bracelet with the initials W.W.J.D? This stands for, "What would Jesus do?" My older sister was impressed with a family who counseled their children to ask "What would Jesus do?" when they were wrestling with whether to do something or not. The answer to the question "What would Jesus do?" is always the same. The answer is, "Jesus would always do what would bring glory to His heavenly Father."

In this passage Paul gives the right answer also to this question. He says simply, "Whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God" (1 Cor. 10:31).

The above statement is a great measuring rod we can use to determine if we should do something or not. We need to ask ourselves the question, "Is what I am about to say or do going to glorify my heavenly Father?" If it will not glorify Him, then we should not say or do it.

Sin is simply falling short of the glory of God. We will not fall short of the glory of God if we are constantly seeking to glorify Him. A prayer I try to pray every morning is the one below. You might want to join me in praying it this morning.

Father, help me today to say and do only those things that will bring glory to You. I offer the members of my body—my mind to think Your thoughts, my tongue to extol You and to speak edifying things to others, my hands to do Your works and my feet to walk in Your ways and Your will today.

READ: Nehemiah 11:1-12:26; 1 Corinthians 10:15-11:2; Psalm 34:11-22; Proverbs 24:14-16


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Live Extraordinarily

Today's Message

What Is the Fear of the Lord?

The fear of the Lord is not being scared of God. How can we have intimacy with someone we are scared of? God's greatest passion is to have close fellowship with us.

The person who fears God has nothing to hide. In fact, he or she is scared to be away from God. King David had a holy fear of God and still ran toward Him and said, "Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my thoughts. Point out anything in me that offends you" (Psalm 139:23-24, NLT).

To fear God means you give Him the place of glory, honor, reverence, thanksgiving, praise, and preeminence He deserves. He holds this position with us when we esteem Him and His desires over and above our own or others'. You hate what He hates and love what He loves. You passionately seek truth in your "inward parts."

Holy fear is manifested by our unconditional obedience to Him, whether we understand what He is doing or not. When we properly fear God, we know that we can't hide anything from Him. 

We must allow the Word of God to penetrate deep into our heart to judge our thought processes, attitudes, perceptions, intentions and so forth—thus changing the way we behave.

We can't fool God by making a superficial acknowledgment of the importance of pleasing and fearing Him but departing from it when it isn't convenient. It must be a firm and never-changing decision, for upon it hinges whether we are capable of growing into the image of Jesus Christ.

If you don't truly fear God, you will grow distant from Him. For this reason we are told: "The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom" (Psalm 111:10). And again: "Friendship with the LORD is reserved for those who fear him. With them he shares the secrets of his covenant" (vs. 25:14). The Lord will not reveal Himself to those who lack holy fear. He must take preeminence in a person's life in a deep-rooted heart decision: My life is not my own; it belongs to my Lord, Jesus Christ.

Marked by boldness and passion, John Bevere delivers uncompromising truth through his award-winning curriculum and best-selling books now available in over sixty languages. His newest book is Extraordinary: The Life You're Meant to Live. More information is available at www.ExtraordinaryOnline.org.

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