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Loving God

Today's Message

{ Day 148 }

Now it happened as they went that He entered a certain village; and a certain woman named Martha welcomed Him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, who also sat at Jesus' feet and heard His word. But Martha was distracted with much serving, and she approached Him and said, "Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Therefore tell her to help me." And Jesus answered and said to her, "Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her." —Luke 10:38-42, NKJV

Of course, it's absolutely essential for us to embrace Christ's mandate to reach out to people and to touch the nations. But this heart of service must be secondary, not primary. The reversal of these priorities was Martha's problem. When Mary and Martha were in their little conflict, Martha was not wrong because she wanted to be a servant. However, her priorities were upside down because her natural self, her natural abilities and interests, compelled her to be a worker before she was a lover. In fact, her work distracted her from being a lover (v. 40). When I see a worker I say to myself, "Well, he's halfway there." But I also understand that such an individual will be a much more effective worker if he or she first becomes a lover.

{ PRAYER STARTER }

Father, so often in my spiritual service to You I respond like Martha, focusing on the work of the ministry. Help me never to forget that I am first to be a "lover," then to be a "worker."

Many individuals are so focused on enriching
their earthly circumstances and pursuing personal
comforts that they never get serious about
becoming a worker, let alone a lover.

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Daily Breakthroughs

Today's Message

The Narrow Way

Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father. —Matthew 7:21

An all-inclusive, non-condemning, watered-down gospel promotes a generalized version of Christianity and may avoid giving offense—but it will never save one solitary soul!

Those who rewrite the Word of God preach a humanistic gospel filled with good-sounding lies or a perverted gospel, convincing others they can have sin and salvation too. One day they will proudly spread their works before Jesus, expecting a reward. Their faces will fall as they are told to depart! They will protest, "But we prophesied in your name! We cast out devils and did wonderful works in your name!" But Jesus will answer, "I never knew you" (Matthew 7:22,23).

Let's preach the gospel according to Jesus. Let's preach and teach true salvation, being bought with a price, washed in the blood, filled with the Holy Ghost, walking the straight and narrow way. This gospel will reap an eternal harvest.

Jesus, I enter into Your narrow way and desire to
surrender completely to all that You have
for me in my life. Amen.

 


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By Love Transformed

Today's Message

Fulfilling His Will in Our Lives

Do what is right and good in the Lord's sight, so that it may go well with you. —Deuteronomy 6:18

Do you believe that you are consciously in the will of God? God wants you to be in His will and to know what His will is. Paul's word followed the previous admonition: "Find out what pleases the Lord" (Eph. 5:10). When you find out what pleases the Lord—and then do it—you may be sure that you are in His will.

The inner testimony of the Spirit, which will always correspond to God's revealed will (the Bible), is sufficient to convey that you are in His will. If you are not in His will it is because you either didn't obey God's explicit Word, like Jonah (Jon. 1:1-3), or you moved ahead of Him, like Joseph and Mary (Luke 2:41-44).

But "all's well that ends well," as Shakespeare put it. At the end of the day, after having a quarrel with the Lord, Jonah let God have the last word (Jon. 4:11). So it was with Joseph and Mary (Luke 2:51).

Both accounts have these ingredients in common—the people referred to were temporarily out of God's will but fully in it in the end. Is it possible to be out of the will of God and yet in the will of God at the same time? Yes. God permits things in your life that sidetrack you for a time. But it is part of His long-term strategy for your life. All that is permitted as to time and circumstance is redeemable.

Whether one has sinned grievously like Jonah or has run ahead of the Lord like Joseph and Mary, God does not desert His own. His aim in each case is to teach you His "ways"—if you will listen. As long as you can hear God's voice and accept His rebukes, it means you are not stone-deaf to the Spirit. Not only is God not finished with you, but the best is just around the corner.

Excerpted from The Sensitivity of the Spirit (Charisma House, 2002).

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Live Extraordinarily

Today's Message

Unlimited Access to God

"For I know the plans I have for you," says the Lord. "They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope" (Jeremiah 29:11, NLT).

God has a plan for your life! And that plan is good—not average, mediocre, or boring. It was established in the mind of God before you were ever born, before the creation of the earth itself. This truth is made incredibly clear in Psalm 139. Look at what David writes:

"O Lord, you have searched me and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O Lord.

My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be." (vs 1-4, 15-16 NIV)

God is amazing! He knows every thought before you think it, every word before you speak it. He knows when you lie down and when you get up, and He is totally aware of every day of your life before it takes place. With a heavenly Father like this, why go anywhere else for wisdom and direction for your life?

How can you tap into the infinite wisdom of the One who created the heavens and the earth? Through a close, ongoing relationship with Him. He loves you with an everlasting love and wants to be a part of every area of your life. As you read His Word and spend time with Him in prayer, He will reveal to you His general will and His specific will for your life.

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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