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Loving God

Today's Message

{ Day 232 }

Suppose a woman has ten silver coins and loses one. Does she not light a lamp, sweep the house and search carefully until she finds it? And when she finds it, she calls her friends and neighbors together and says, "Rejoice with me; I have found my lost coin." In the same way, I tell you, there is rejoicing in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents. —Luke 15:8-10

In Luke 15, Jesus addressed angry Pharisees who were miffed at Him for eating with and fellowshiping with sinners. In reply, Jesus said His Father rejoiced and the angels that did His bidding were glad; therefore, we ought to be glad. Over and over in this chapter Jesus revealed the joyous atmosphere around the throne. In verse 10, He said, "I say to you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents" (NKJV). He was speaking of the repenting sinner who is still very immature. If the sinner repents at 3:00 p.m., the angels are singing and rejoicing by 3:01 p.m. That sinner is still profoundly immature in his faith, but the angels are abundantly glad. His repentance is absolutely sincere though his maturity is nonexistent. The yes in his spirit is imperfect, but it is eternally significant.

{ PRAYER STARTER }

Give me Your understanding in regards to the immaturity and insincerity I see in others—and in myself at times. Let me look at others through Your eyes and see the potential for spiritual maturity and genuine love.

Love is sincere and genuine many years
before it becomes mature and strong.

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Daily Breakthroughs

Today's Message

Your Source

And thou say in thine heart, My power and the might of mine hand hath gotten me this wealth. —Deuteronomy 8:17

When things are going well, it could be easy to take credit for your prosperity. You may think it is your job or your college education that has given you the ability to get wealth. Your intelligence and cunning are not the source of your supply: God is.

During times of great need, you can't depend on anything of this world, including your job or your education. People who hold several degrees and have worked for corporations for decades have been fired from their jobs, thrown into the workforce, and are finding that their age and experience are not a help, but a hindrance.

The woman sick with an issue of blood spent her

living—everything she had—on physicians, relying on their intelligence and education, but only grew worse (Matthew 9:20). We are warned not to forget God in our abundance, or we will eventually lose everything (v. 19).

Realize exactly how dependent you really are on God, for He alone is your true source.

Jesus, You are my source and my supply.
You are my resource and my resupply. I
need You over and over again to renew
and revive my life. Without You my life
loses its charge and vitality. Amen.

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By Love Transformed

Today's Message

When God Tells Us Why

Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known. —1 Corinthians 13:12

Not only will we be changed and able to look on the glorified Lord face-to-face, but something wonderful will also happen—God will tell us why. God wants to tell us why, far more than we even want to know. But the patience of God is extraordinary. He can wait. He wants us to know the answers to our questions, but He can wait.

Perhaps this appeals only to the person who is agonized with questions, who really longs for God to explain something. Perhaps the question is: Why is there a devil? Why didn't God just destroy the devil a long time ago? Why is there injustice? Why is there evil? But Paul says, "One day I shall know." F. F. Bruce has commented that the Greek word here, epignosis, should be translated as "understand." Some day God will make things plain.

Sometimes our questions are not on such a grand scale but are more personal: Did I make the right decision? Lord, have I been living out of Your will? Did I fail You? Paul is saying we see the Lord's glory only in a reflection, so we can't see things perfectly. The mirror that enables us to see ourselves has its limits: when we look at ourselves in a mirror, we do so with a little bit of bias.

God's Word is the spiritual mirror by which we see our hearts, but even here our self-understanding is limited; we will always be prone to self-righteousness and, therefore, be unable to see ourselves as we really are. Sometimes I will say, "Lord, show me." But if I saw my wickedness directly, I wouldn't be able to take it. If I saw the Lord's glory directly I would die. No one can see God and live.

And so God graciously reveals things to us a bit at a time, like peeling the layers off an onion. With each new bit of understanding we might ask why we had to wait so long to get it right.

Excerpted from Just Love (Christian Focus Publications Ltd., 1997).

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Around the Word in 365 Days

Today's Message

Who Is Our Daysman?

Job 8:1-11:20 Job in this passage cries out for a daysman to stand between him and God. He was crying out for a mediator between God and himself. Job did not know that God's plan from the beginning of the earth was to provide such a daysman. Jesus Christ, who would be our intercessor and our redeemer, is now our daysman or mediator who stands on our behalf before God. Later as we read the Book of Job, we see how God revealed His plan to Job, and Job finally knew he had a redeemer—one who could buy back everything he had lost, one who could redeem his very own soul from destruction.

We are all familiar with Handel's Messiah and the part that declares, "I know that my redeemer liveth, and He will stand in the latter day." This is based on what Job finally knew in the Spirit. Job knew one day he would stand before God justified and made righteous because of his faith in this redeemer. Job also believed in the resurrection because he says later that his flesh would see God.

Job knew Jesus by the revelation of the Holy Spirit even as David knew Him. Even though Jesus had not been born as a babe in Bethlehem, He was seated next to the Father making intercession for Job and for David. Jesus was with God in the beginning of Creation, and by and through Jesus was everything made. He is the living Word who flung the universe into being, and later He was the Word made flesh.

Thank God we can know our redeemer personally. We have an advantage over David and Job. We can read about our redeemer's life on earth, the people He touched, the conversations He had with the Father and others, the experience He had on the cross, and His death, burial, resurrection and ascension to His former place—the right hand of the Father.

Join me as I praise Jesus, my redeemer, my daysman, who enables me to stand before the Father because of His righteousness. The Father through the Son has redeemed me from a life of darkness in sin and has translated me into His kingdom of light, which is filled with His righteousness, peace and joy. I can say with Job, "I know my redeemer lives, and one day my flesh will see Him face to face." What a day it will be when I see my daysman face to face. Hallelujah!!

READ: Job 8:1-11:20; 1 Corinthians 15:1-28; Psalm 38:1-22; Proverbs 21:28-29

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Live Extraordinarily

Today's Message

Rule in Life

?Many believe they are merely struggling sinners who've been forgiven—and someday, in heaven, they will be like Jesus. This fallacy keeps people in bondage and nullifies God’s power in their lives. The Bible tells us we are His children: "Beloved, now we are children of God" (1 John 3:2, NKJV). If we are now His children, we now have access to fully operate in the character of Jesus.  We have the ability to live as He intended us to live from the beginning—extraordinarily! We can live in His image, His likeness, possessing His ability—all through grace! You are a son or daughter of God. You possess His nature. You were meant for anything but ordinary!??

Grace not only instructs us, but it also empowers us to live above our human potential. We're born again, brand-new people, free to live an extraordinary life! The same power that raised Jesus from the dead abides in us. This is why the enemy has strived to reduce grace down to merely a ticket into heaven. If you find out who you are, you will rise up and be a great threat to his work. You'll be extraordinary and change your world!

"All who receive God's abundant grace and are freely put right with Him will rule in life through Christ" (Romans 5:17, TEV). This scripture shows we are to rise above the norm. We are influencers and leaders. If you're a teacher, you can come up with the most innovative ways of communicating knowledge and wisdom. If you're a designer, your creative ideas can be cutting-edge. As a businessperson, you can have inventive ideas and keen marketing strategies that are ahead of the curve. You'll know when to buy and when to sell. If you're a stay-at-home mom, you can be the most imaginative mom in your neighborhood. As rulers in life, we will meet others' needs by the exceedingly great power that's in us.

Those who find this grace-empowered life are not driven by personal gain or greed. They live to bring light, love, truth and resource to those they influence. In reaching beyond themselves, they touch hurting humankind and naturally flourish.

Extraordinary living has been God's plan for you from the beginning—nothing less. But, you must truly believe this to begin enjoying a godly life, advancing in all areas of society. You were designed with the potential to be the most creative, innovative and wisest on earth! You were created to heal the sick and free the captives! A revelation of who you are and what you are called to do awaits you... ask, seek, knock—and believe!

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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