In his book, Real Christianity, Wilberforce suggested that we "fix our gaze upon Jesus." He meant, among other things, that we should acknowledge Jesus as our chief model of genuine love and humility. Then by the power of Christ's indwelling Spirit, we will be able to align our lives with His. read more
Spring is the perfect time to assess where you are regarding your finances. Are you surviving or thriving? God has wisdom for you in this area. Become a wise steward of the resources the Lord has given you, and you will prosper. read more
In these days of great evil and strife, there is no doubt about it that Satan is at war with God's people. As the evils of the age advance, you and I must advance the cause of Christ. God's Word gives us the power over darkness.
READ: Matt. 8:29; John 14:12; Rom. 16:20; Eph. 6:12; Heb. 11:3; Luke 10:19. HEART ISSUE: Have you been too passive in speaking up for your faith? Are you standing firm and ready to defend what you believe? PRAYER FOCUS: Father God, in the name of Jesus, thank You for showing me how to speak up for Christ. Thank You for giving me strength, confidence and peace in standing firm as a witness for You. Amen and amen.
In the Word of God we can find great wisdom and the tools we need to combat our fears and overcome the power of the devil. You must learn to use the sword of the Spirit effectively, and to draw strength from God's Spirit in order to walk in victory with Him each day.
READ: Matt. 10:1; Mark 3:14-15; Luke 9:1; Luke 10:1-20; Eph. 5:16; 1 John 3:8. HEART ISSUE: Ask God to reveal the opportunities you may be missing to influence others for Him. In your prayer time, ask Him to show you specific ways in which you can be a stronger witness. PRAYER FOCUS: Thank You, Lord, for empowering me to be Your vessel to shine in this dark and mixed-up world. Give me the words to speak when I witness to others. Let me not shrink back in fear. Allow me to be forceful and courageous, always showing Your love. In the name of Jesus, Amen.
Regardless of any shame you have about the circumstances of your life, God's love and mercy can cover you. Despite how fragmented and torn apart you have felt, God loves you deeply and, by His Spirit, you can be made completely whole. Absolute cleansing is a promise to all who seek and accept His forgiveness. read more
A proven formula for spiritual growth and transformation combines the right approach to Bible study with the practice of Christian disciplines.
GOD, IN HIS SOVEREIGN GRACE AND outrageous love, has given us in the Bible a written revelation of who He is and what His purposes are for humanity. There is no book that is remotely close to achieving the significance and influence of this one. But the intrinsic power and greatness of the Bible does not make it easy for us to receive the life it offers.
In point of fact, we can often use the Bible in ways that stifle spiritual life or even destroy the soul. The source of the problem is rooted in the two most common objectives of Bible study: (1) The practice of studying the Bible for information or knowledge alone and (2) the tendency to study specific passages of the Bible that speak to particular needs rather than seeking whole-life discipleship to Jesus. read more
It is extremely difficult to live in the midst of so much that is tempting to our flesh, yet keep your mind and heart pure before God. One safeguard is to intentionally lift your heart to the Lord each day. Doing so will reaffirm your devotion to Him and re-establish your heart in His peace. read more
We live in a culture of excess. Where is the peace of God in our frantic and frenetic quest for more things? God's Word will not only help you master your emotions and anxieties over getting more stuff, it will also help you to walk in His wisdom concerning your spending, so you can be blessed. read more
Look around you, and you will discover people in your local congregation who desperately need to feel connected to others. Reach out to them. It will make their adjustment easier and bring glory to the Lord. read more
God offers redemption and eternal life to humankind because of His love for us. The more you read His Word, the more blessed you are sure to be, and the more deeply you will come to love God, Your heavenly Father, and God the Son, Jesus Christ. read more
God is calling you to yield to the wind of His Spirit in a new way. Ask Him to cleanse and purify you, in order to use you. Let His Word guide you and get you ready for the great things ahead.
READ: Ps. 1:1-6; Luke 12:12; Acts 1:4-5; Acts 1:8; Rom. 12:1-2; Eph. 1:4. HEART ISSUE: Take some moments in your prayer time this week and ask the Lord to show you what areas of your life need to be cleaned up. Be open to hear His voice and follow His direction. PRAYER FOCUS: Father, in the name of Jesus, I thank You that by the wind of Your Spirit, You are sifting out the impurities and chaff from my life. Fill me afresh with Your presence. Amen.
Because we are in Christ Jesus, our Vine, we can look forward to new levels of wholeness and healing. Let God's Word serve as your guide to walking holy in Christ, so that the light of Christ will increase in you and shine to others in a dark world. He will remove all the chaff if we walk faithfully with Him.
READ:John 3:30; John 15:1-7; Eph. 4:1-3; Eph. 5:15; Eph. 5:27; Phil. 2:15. HEART ISSUE: Are you willing to let Christ prepare you for greater service to Him? This means letting Him take away the wrong stuff in your life and replace it with His presence. Let the power of His Word help purify you and the power of His Spirit to set you on course for the great things ahead in His service. PRAYER FOCUS: Father, in the name of Jesus, thank You for refining me and transforming me into the likeness of Jesus. Thank You that the more I am cleansed of the unrighteousness in my life, the more I am readied and equipped to do the great things of ministry that You have for me. Amen.
God's Word helps you experience more of His magnificent presence and purpose for your life. The only way to really stand in strength is to stand in Christ, knowing Who He is and who you are in Him. Seek God. It is only through Him that you will find courage, peace, joy and fulfillment. read more
There are times when we can become distracted or discouraged by the pressures of life. Studying God's Word helps you discover His will for you. Trusting Him fully, and walking by faith with Him each day will keep you from straying, despite the challenges.
READ:Ps. 142:3; Ps. 143:8-10; Prov. 8:32-33; Jer. 20:9; John 15:16; Phil. 3:14. HEART ISSUE: In your prayer time this week, ask God to give you fresh revelation and wisdom regarding His will for your life. If you are weary, ask for strength to stay on the course He's carved out for you. PRAYER FOCUS: Father, in the name of Jesus, I thank You for helping me to stay on track as I attempt to walk in Your perfect will. Give me discernment to recognize the tempting, counterfeit paths that would deceive me. Keep me moving forward, pressing toward the goal of Your high calling. Amen.
Have you ever wanted to quit? Most of us would have to admit to at least one instance when throwing in the towel seemed like a good idea. However, resigning from God's will is never an option.
His calling is His best for your life. Don't give up. If you've taken a step back, God's perfect will for you is still alive, so ask for the grace to get back on track. Keep walking!
READ:Jer. 29:11; John 13:12; 2 Cor. 9: 8; Phil. 1:6; 2 Thess. 1:12; 2 Thess. 3:3. HEART ISSUE: God knows you inside out, so He has not made a mistake in calling you nor has He forgotten what it will take in order for you to reach your goal. Challenge yourself to devote more time to praying specifically about this. PRAYER FOCUS: Father, in the name of Jesus, I will no longer threaten to quit or drag my feet. I fully accept Your perfect will for my life. No one who trusts in You is utterly disappointed, and no one fails who walks in obedience. I will follow You, trusting that the path You have lovingly set before me is the very best one. Amen.
The Lord desires to equip us to move in prayer power, touching the hurting and the suffering, and seeing them become whole. Let Christ's teachings and example instruct and inspire you to give yourself to the work of the Lord in ministering healing to others.
READ: Ex. 20:9; Mark 9:2; Mark 9:4; Ps. 91:1; Matt. 18:19; Mark 9:23. HEART ISSUE: Challenge yourself this week to devote more time to praying for those who are struggling with health issues. Ask the Lord for specific guidance as to how you can more fully follow His examples in the ministry of healing. PRAYER FOCUS: Father, in the name of Jesus, I give You thanks that in Your Word You show us how to approach those who are ill. Let the Scriptures give us hope and teach us what to speak, how to act and how to move in the miraculous, as Jesus did. Amen.
God does not make mistakes in what He keeps hidden or in His timing for revealing those very things. Regardless of what may not be happening at the moment, God is not through with you. As you study the life of Christ in the Gospels you will discover that quiet, insignificant times of seeming anonymity can be times of profound preparation for the greater, more significant roles that await you. read more
Jesus lived in intimate communion with His Father. The Scriptures refer to Jesus as "the express image" of God. As believers, we also have the amazing privilege of close, face-to-face communion with the living God. Such knowledge carries with it the expectation of access to His presence and power. read more
What are you doing to make sure others receive the truth of God's salvation? He has made available immeasurable blessings and riches, yet so many live in poverty of spirit. Let us boldly carry the standard of God's love and peace to everyone we meet, so that others will get blessed—now and for all of eternity.
READ: Matt. 28:19; John 5:11; John 3:36; John 6:48-51; John 14:6; Eph. 3:20. HEART ISSUE: Spend time in God's Word this week, preparing your heart for how to share these truths with those around you, blessing them and transforming their lives. PRAYER FOCUS: Father, in Jesus' name, I thank You that You are Lord. You are my bread of life. By Your hand I am satisfied. My needs are met, and I can live wholeheartedly and walk in Your abundance. Amen.
As you get into God's Word, you will begin to discover that He is a God of abundance and overflow—He has plenty of blessings and supply for you and others!
READ: Mark 8:34; Acts 1:8; 1 Tim. 1:12-17; 2 Tim. 2:10; 2 Tim. 4:17; Heb. 12:14-15. HEART ISSUE: Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal how you might minister the gospel to the lost world around you. Jot down ideas and directions and carry them with you—as strategies for reaching the lost with the good news of Jesus Christ and eternal life! Prepare your heart to see miracles as others receive Him. PRAYER FOCUS: Father, in the name of Jesus, thank You for making me a vessel of Your good news of Jesus Christ. Let me touch many—beginning with my family, my neighbors, my co-workers and others I encounter. Let them be blessed to receive the good news of Jesus the Savior, not just for today, but also for all of eternity. Amen.
When was the last time you "looked up" and gave thought and focus to God Almighty? He created the heavens and the earth. He also created you, and He reigns supreme over any concern or problem you will ever face. In His strength, you can rise above the storms of life that would hinder you. He is your great God, and He has great things in store for you.
READ: Is. 40:31; Ps. 40:12; Ps. 121:2; Ps. 123:1-2; Ps. 143:10-11; 2 Cor. 3:18. HEART ISSUE: Take some moments in your prayer time this week to celebrate the miraculous workings of the Lord. Enjoy the freedom He has given you and all He is at work to perform on your behalf. PRAYER FOCUS: Father, I thank You that I am destined to be victorious over every form of darkness and bondage. Use me, Lord. Fulfill Your great plans and purposes for my life, and help me to reflect Your glory. In Jesus' name, Amen.
Today women are breaking through to new levels of leadership, and yet there is still opposition. But God is calling women, like Deborah, to "awake" and claim with faith the leadership potential they have, knowing that they can make a powerful difference. read more
There is nothing so fulfilling as serving Jesus Christ, representing Him with your finest gifts and talents. But perhaps even more important than offering your gifts is humbly yielding yourself to Him. God's Word provides passages that direct you in servanthood, in living a life of yieldedness and obedience. read more
Because of what Jesus Christ did for us on the cross, His grace truly is active and operative in our lives. God's powerful, awesome grace through the Spirit of Christ is presented throughout the New Testament.
READ:John 10:10; Rom. 7:8-20; Rom. 8:7-9; 1 Cor. 15:56-58; 2 Cor. 3: 3-13; 2 Cor. 12:9. HEART ISSUE:Consider what it means that God's grace is sufficient for you? Covenant with the Lord today to live with the expectation of victory in all things because He has given you the victory on the cross. PRAYER FOCUS:Father, thank You for the cross of Jesus from which Your grace greatly abounds upon my life daily. Thank You that no matter what I have done or what I am going through, I can take it all to Jesus and lay it at the cross, where I can claim victory over all things through Him. Amen.
God's laws are external standards, but His grace is always at work within us. God's Word shows us how to live by the Spirit of Christ in all that we do. His Word shows His grace through Christ that moves through our lives, revealing His great presence and power.
READ:Rom. 8:14; 2 Cor.3:18; Gal. 5:24-25; Phil. 1:6-9; Col. 1:26-27; Heb. 8:8-13. HEART ISSUE:When you consider that God's grace moves through the Spirit of Christ, the hope of glory that lives in you, then how can you not have His presence and power in all that you do? If you are facing challenges, rest in the truth that God's grace is sufficient and complete, empowering you to complete what He has begun in you. PRAYER FOCUS:Father, thank You for Your all-sufficient grace that fills me with Your presence, that I might fulfill Your work —always in victory—on this earth. Amen.