A Devotion May Be Someone's Only Bible

Spirit & Heart

Where your heart is, there is where your treasure lays. Our hearts guide our emotion and decisions. Unless God is the center of the heart, things are askew. Allowing the Spirit into the matters of the heart promises the faithfulness of Jesus in our lives.

Modern Man’s Road

I call my wife Jane Jetson when I see her talk to the watch on her wrist.

Our electronics have advanced quicker than a nanosecond. Yoda would say, “Progressive we have become.” We want the new. What about mankind, or the man or woman who holds those savvy devices? Are we more modern? Has human nature improved?

Oprah says, “When you know better, you do better.” James, the brother of Jesus said, “Anyone, then, who knows the good he ought to do and doesn’t do it, sins” (James 4:17). C.S. Lewis was an atheist before God changed him. Most know him through the movie series, Chronicles of Narnia.

In the 1952 classic, Mere Christianity, C. S. Lewis wrote: "We all want progress. But progress means getting nearer to the place where you want to be. And if you have taken a wrong turning, then to go forward does not get you any nearer. If you are on the wrong road, progress means doing an about-turn and walking back to the right road; and in that case the man who turns back soonest is the most progressive man.”

Lewis’ wisdom still speaks from the grave. Instead of a taking a quicker route through our issues or junk, maybe we need to stop and turn around. The word repent is an ancient word. In modern lingo, it means to make a 180-degree turn. That’s how we progress spiritually.

The prophet Jeremiah, known for his moodiness, offers decisive advice: “This is what the Lord says: Stand at the crossroads and look; ask for the ancient paths, ask where the good way is, and walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls. But you said, ‘We will not walk in it.” 

January shouldn’t be the only month we take a hard look at ourselves to see where our soul lives. Sometimes, we avoid going where we see. We attend church and put on our church face, but afterward return to our old selves. We never bridge the truth we have heard into our personal lives.

Make up your mind to listen to the right voice and act on it. 

(Photo courtesy of pixabay.)

(For more devotions, visit Christian Devotions.)



Mosaic

Oh, dear Jesus,

My life has been shattered into a million pieces. I am emotionally defeated. I feel as if I’m fading into nothingness, drifting into the abyss. Help me, Jesus. I can barely hold on. I need to know You still love me. Do You still care?

My child,

Nothing you can ever say or do will diminish My love for you. You are My special child. Never doubt My love. Imagine your life as a mosaic, uniquely fashioned by broken pieces of glass. These broken pieces were once beautiful. But when they were broken, they were deemed useless. Presumed to have no purpose, they were thrown into the trash and forgotten.

You may think this describes you. There have been many hard, painful circumstances—like the broken pieces or the shattered glass—that have made up your life. But I say to you, be at peace, My child. I, the Master Artist, quietly bend down to pick up the broken pieces. I place them perfectly into the art I am creating to make you an original piece of art.

Don’t ask Me what I am making or tell Me how to create. Don’t say that My mosaic is too jagged over here or that there should be more color over there. Only I have the master plan.  Your job is to stay yielded in My hands and remember the great love I have for you. The kind of love that never fails. Today is the day we will begin again.

Allow God to love and restore you.

(Photo courtesy of pixabay.)

(For more devotions, visit Christian Devotions.)



Rough Waters

A branch violently whipped in and out of a screaming stream, bursting with flood waters.

The storm the night before was relentless. The branch, still attached to the tree, survived the night. It’s curious how those leaves didn’t get stripped off and carried away … lost forever.

I am a rape survivor. One day, I found myself in a mental storm that lasted for years. The raging torrents of life almost stripped me clean of my sanity and carried me away into the dark deluge. But I planted myself beside the Living Water and grew deep roots.

The one who trusts in the Lord has deep roots. It takes faith and courage to trust in a God we cannot see with our eyes or touch with our hands. Streams of water aren’t always calm. We experience rough waters. Sometimes, they last for a night; sometimes they last for years. However long they last, God will see us through them.

Life can be like that branch. We get caught up in the turmoil of life, get battered and bruised, and hang on for dear life. But if we are planted firmly with deep roots, we can hang on, endure, and not wither.

You may be a single parent working a full-time job and furthering your education for a better future for you and your kids. Your rough waters may be struggling through your studies. You may be an artist, frustrated that you can’t transfer the vision in your head onto the canvas. Or perhaps you’re an athlete just shy of your personal goals. Trust in the Lord and keep studying, honing the craft, and practicing while giving it your all. In due season, the fruits of your labor will come.

In whatever form the success comes, don’t give up even when the streams get rough. Plant yourself near the stream of Living Water and you will not wither.

(Photo courtesy of pixabay.)

(For more devotions, visit Christian Devotions.)



Remember Me

A hush washed over the crowd like a gentle ocean wave.

We leaned through the people, toward the oncoming parade to see what caused the sudden quiet. A color guard marched past. We were amazed that it consisted of two WWII vets and even a Marine from the Korean War, but what changed us in a moment was an Army vet slowly lumbering a step behind, dragging his rifle, eyes fixed on the ground. He wore his fatigues and a leather jacket that harbored red embroidered words, VIET NAM. Beneath the letters, boots and a helmet lying at the foot of a white cross.

Actions are louder than words, and his spoke with great clarity. Broken and sad, the vet marched in memory of his forgotten, fallen friends, reminding everyone of a group of men who’d given their all and yet were shunned.

Christ knew what awaited Him as His days wound down. He understood what it was like to be shunned, to feel a lack of appreciation. Jesus wanted to set a memorial in place that exemplified His Father’s love. He broke the bread and told them, “Do this to remember me.”

That was the important thing … remembrance of Christ, His sacrifice, and the gift that came from it. The ministry of Christ wouldn’t be forgotten. He willingly stepped into the throngs of torture and death to save us. That brought us salvation, redemption, and the promise of eternity.

I can’t watch a veteran pass without tears rising to the surface. It takes my breath to think that without hesitation these men and women stand in the gap to protect me. I rarely let a vet pass without thanking them for all they have done, be it at the airport or the grocery store. For those who have given it all—it’s right and fair we remember their sacrifice, just as we remember the ultimate sacrifice made by God’s only Son.

This Memorial Day, remember the soldiers who willingly sacrificed all they had so we might be free. Then go to your knees and give thanks for the ultimate sacrifice that brings us eternal life.

“Do this in remembrance of me.” ~ Jesus Christ

(Photo courtesy of pixabay.)

(For more devotions, visit Christian Devotions.)



Fret Not

James Naismith was almost thirty years old when he left an athletic director position at McGill University in Montreal.

Naismith was responsible for teaching physical education at the YMCA International Training School in Springfield, Massachusetts. He was assigned the task of creating an athletic re-direction for his young athletes during the cold and harsh winters of New England, but he rallied to the task and created a game called basketball.

Do not fret because of evildoers, Be not envious toward wrongdoers. This psalm is well-known and contrasts the way of the righteous with the way of the wicked. Three times in the first eight verses we read “fret not,” which is the Hebraic word charah and denotes a burning and kindling.

Charah in this context can be translated worry. The passage indicates that the righteous behave differently than the wicked—who are consumed with worries and anxieties. Instead of worrying, the righteous trust in the Lord, delight in Him, commit their lives to Him, and rest in Him.  

Our lives can be less stressful when we practice what the Scriptures teach. Our diversions will not lead to creating a game like basketball, as Dr. Naismith did, but they will make life more meaningful. What a welcome re-direction to worry.

Ask God to help you trust, delight, commit, and rest in Him.

(Photo courtesy of pixabay.)

(For more devotions, visit Christian Devotions.)



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