A Devotion May Be Someone's Only Bible

Spirit & Mind

Focusing our minds on Christ. . .studying His word, drawing tight into a relationship that is unbreakable. This is when His Spirit lives in our minds helping us keep our eyes focused only on Him.

Heaven, Coyotes, and Me

The NextDoor post focused on the threat coyotes pose to our community and neighborhood. More than a neighborly heads-up, it called us to action with meetings and megaphones. The writer proposed the predators should be trapped and relocated.

I found myself siding with the coyotes. After all, weren’t we the ones intruding on their habitat? My home is at the southernmost tip of a peninsula in Florida, where new development runs rampant. More allies than adversaries, it seemed we and the coyotes shared common ground.

Coyotes are part of my everyday landscape. Their yips announce the full moon each month, and I return their vacant stares from a distance as I leave church. We practice a delicate détente. Turns out I’m more at peace with coyotes as neighbors than I am with the encroaching development that displaces families, businesses, and wildlife.

Nearby shopping centers and businesses that have served my community for many years are raised to new life as condos, apartment complexes, and storage centers. While I value familiarity in this season of my life, progress gobbles up precious memories, leaving a trail of loss and longing in its wake. It’s disorienting.  

But God’s Word brings comfort, reminding me this world is not my permanent home. We are created for forever. God has planted eternity in our hearts and given us the promise of heaven. And what a promise it is.

Paul writes in the book of Corinthians that heaven is beyond anything we could dare to dream or believe. The wolf will lie with the lamb, and I imagine I will frolic with the coyotes.

Heaven waits to welcome all who believe in the one God has sent. Theologians call it the divine exchange: God’s saving grace for our sins. We have all missed the mark. None of us is righteous—not even one.

But God loved us in our sins and made a way for us to be with Him forever. Jesus is that way. His sacrifice raises us to new life in Him on earth and with Him in eternity. With God, a promise made is a promise kept.

Ensure you believe in the one God sent to pay for your sins.

(Photo courtesy of pixabay and jl1262.)

(For more devotions, visit Christian Devotions.)



Pray Bigger

I welcome each brand-new day as the golden-haired dawn draws back the veil of darkness.

We all hope to have a feel-good day of renewed positive energy. To me, God is like the sunrise—unfailing and reliable. The wings of dawn approach. It is like drawing back our human darkness as Jesus approaches in our prayers.

How priceless is your unfailing love, O God! People take refuge in the shadow of your wings. This psalm seemed apt for the day as I read the Holy Word. At certain stages, I have taken refuge in the shadow of our great God’s wings. I kept on praying. These days, thanks be to God, my life is all quiet on the Western front and quiet on the eastern seaboard of this lucky land.  

To me and each follower of Christ, nothing is wrong with praying for God to grant us a peaceful refuge. We should all pray bigger—for more holiness in our world, greater faith, and God’s wings to soar over the younger people we raise or educate. I still do this as a tutor.

We can pray that Jesus appears to every generation ahead in their prayers and that they would have more compassion for the vulnerable. We can keep praying for solutions for the issues that confront them. Any prayer with good intentions is good.

Like our Lord Jesus, we must dream and pray bigger, as He taught us. Even if times get tough, God’s steadfast love will never fail us. Pray bigger. 

(Photo courtesy of pixabay and Photorech.)

(For more devotions, visit Christian Devotions.)



Hide-and-Seek

“Who wants to play hide-and-seek?”

“I do.”

“Okay, you hide, and I’ll seek. Close your eyes. No peeking. Count to ten. No cheating.”

As a child, one of my favorite games I played at school and home was hide-and-seek. It’s not limited to athletes. It’s a game that invites all who want to come and play. The only requirement was to be the first to find the best hiding place. The joy of childhood. Living carefree.

God wants to play hide-and-seek with His children too. He wants us to come and play in a childlike way. To live free from worry and anxiety. Our big brother Jesus gives the cure for anxiety: take no thought for your life what you eat, drink, or wear. Jesus knows our Father and His righteousness and how the kingdom operates.  

Jesus doesn’t want us to worry about the burdens and cares of provision, protection, and preservation. Taking thought on these things is what causes anxiety. He knows what we need and promises to supply it. Anxiety causes us to be distracted, distraught, and dismayed.

The remedy for anxiety isn’t a magic pill but a daily process of striving to be right with God—believing God. God wants to save and deliver us from all our fear, doubt, worry, and unbelief. When we make the kingdom of God and His righteousness our aim, we are right with God. The issues of life are real, but so is the Word of God. God gives us the choice to have righteousness, peace, and joy. Kingdom victory—as children who live, laugh, love, and play hide-and-seek.

Decide to draw closer to God so you can live free of worry and anxiety. 

(Photo courtesy of pixabay and tvjoern.)

(For more devotions, visit Christian Devotions.)



Kaboom

The woman was torn. Commitment to Christ or to her old, unsaved friends? Everyone wondered if she would make the right choice and burn those bridges.

Bridges to the past can be dangerous to our spiritual health. Negative influences that keep us looking back and longing for the pleasures of sin—and keep our focus away from the Lord—must be destroyed.

In Ephesians, we read, In your anger, do not sin . . . do not give the devil a foothold. But this Scripture refers to more than just anger. When we refuse to get rid of those links to the past—people and things that try to pull us away from God—we leave the path unguarded and wide open for the Enemy to advance. Those links can lead back to the wrong type of friends, alcohol or drug abuse, or any number of destructive behaviors.

So, how do we burn those bridges? With the Word of God, prayer, and rejection of those bridges. To repent means to feel deep regret, change our mindset, and to do a 180. To turn around and go the opposite way. To walk away from those habits and sins that can harm us and those around us. When we become new creations in Christ, everything becomes new. The old must go.

My friend made the right choice. She cut off communication with the old crowd and walked away from all the harmful influences in her life.

Won’t you do the same? If you have bridges that need to be destroyed, pull out the powerful, life-changing Word of God and put it to work. Kaboom!

(Photo courtesy of pixabay and phoenixsierra0.)

(For more devotions, visit Christian Devotions.)



The Master Key to Multiplication

"Benjamin," my dad shouted, "can I have your watch back?"

It remains vivid in my memory as if it happened yesterday. My dad, who had previously gifted me a beautiful watch, suddenly decided to reclaim it. I had eagerly anticipated owning that watch for quite some time, so I was bewildered when he took it back. Perplexed, I left his room, only to be summoned back later for an explanation.

My dad pointed out that I hadn't uttered a word of gratitude upon receiving the gift. He emphasized the importance of always expressing gratitude whenever someone bestows something upon me. According to him, a simple "Thank you" acknowledges the giver's generosity and encourages them to continue doing kind acts for me. This valuable lesson taught me the significance of expressing gratitude whenever I receive something.

We may sometimes fail to receive more from God because we neglect to thank Him for the blessings He has already given us. Like the story of the nine lepers who failed to express gratitude after being healed, many Christians overlook the power of giving thanks.

We may remember when we went above and beyond for someone and how we felt when they never acknowledged our efforts with a simple "Thank you." Our motivation to continue helping that person probably diminished significantly.

Lack of gratitude has a profound impact on God. It sometimes hinders His desire to do more for us simply because we fail to express gratitude. Jesus understood the secret power of thanksgiving, which enabled Him to perform the miracle of multiplying five loaves of bread and two fish to feed a crowd of five thousand plus. Although what He had seemed inadequate compared to the need, He received an abundance through the power of thanksgiving.

Consider your current needs and make a conscious decision to thank God for what you already have instead of focusing on your lack. You will witness multiplication in that specific area that exceeds your expectations.

(Photo courtesy of pixabay and pasja1000.)

(For more devotions, visit Christian Devotions.)



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