Devos of the Week: John 3:17

“Indeed, God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.” Often the Good News of the Gospel is shared through the amazing word of John 3:16 – “he who believes…shall not perish but having eternal life.” No less of a wonder however is the God displayed in John 3:17 who did not send his Son to condemn, but to save the world.  Do I present God as one who is more interested in saving than condemning?  Why or why not?  Give us your heart O God.

Devos of the Week: Psalm 126:5

“May those who sow in tears reap with shouts of joy.” This Psalm that speaks of the restoration of Israel after the exile enlightens us with the reality that restoration, healing, and progress come at a cost and with a certain amount of faithfulness in waiting. Hope keeps us turning over soil, planting seeds, and looking for signs of growth along the way. Our praise and thanksgiving rise to God as we sow, even sowing with tears, because we hope for the day of full restoration with shouts of joy. Where are you planting seeds in the midst of tears and discouragement these days? What does it mean to hope in the Lord? “Lord, hear the prayer of every tear, move us toward the day of harvest.”

Devos of the Week: Psalm 13

“How long, Lord…How long will you hide your face from me?” Sometimes simple prayers are the best, the most honest, the most desperate for God. In recent weeks, with news stories, social media, and most unsettling events, I find myself quieted before God and crying out with simple prayers.  What is your simple prayer today?  “Though we do not see You sometimes, cause us to trust in your unfailing love and salvation.”

Devos of the Week: 1 Thessalonians 1:9-10

“what kind of welcome we had among you.” When the Thessalonians welcomed the message of Paul and the salvation of God there were clear characteristics: turning to God and from idols, active service for God, and joining with God’s people in waiting for his return.  Have I turned from all my idols to God? Am I actively serving God? What does it mean for us to “wait?”  Father, where there are idols help me to turn completely, where there is ministry let me serve fully, grant that I might have hope as I faithfully wait with your people.  Amen. 

Devos of the Week – SIMPLE PRAYER – Psalm 13

“How long, Lord…How long will you hide your face from me?” Sometimes simple prayers are the best, the most honest, the most desperate for God. In recent weeks, with news stories, social media, and most unsettling events, I find myself quieted before God and crying out with simple prayers. What is your simple prayer today? “Though we do not see You sometimes, cause us to trust in your unfailing love and salvation.”

 

Devo of the Week: Luke 19:1-10

“Lord, half of my possessions, I give to the poor…” Jesus affirms that “salvation” is more than just words; it involves the action of our lives.  Changed people, change their ways.  Isn’t it easier to talk about new ways and changed behavior than to actually “live” it.  Do my actions show a change of heart? Does my behavior prove a life of faith in Christ?  How does the living of my life impact my leadership?  – Father, I pray that I might not ask others to do, that which I have not. I pray that I might live the life I talk about. Amen.

Devo of the Week: Psalm 7:15

“They make a pit, digging it out, and fall into a hole that they have made…”  The scriptures imply that a great deal of sin and evil has a built in judgment and punishment. Evil people end up falling into the holes that they have made.  If this is true, why do we worry so much about revenge, making sure others pay for their sin and mistakes?  Lord, give me faith to believe that I don’t have to worry about getting even or making sure others are punished.  Free me instead, to be part of your salvation for the world.

Devo of the Week: James 3:8

“no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.” James moves back and forth in his book between the themes of an uncontrolled tongue, faith without deeds, treatment of the poor, and wisdom. What is the relationship between these themes that interweave in his letter? Does James’ view of spiritual life and maturity challenge you? In what ways? How is God addressing these issues in your life these days? It hurts to look deeply at our weaknesses Lord, graciously deal with us that we might reflect your image and glory.

Devo of the Week: James 2:17

“…faith by itself, if not accompanied by action, is dead.” Often this passage in James has been relegated to theological debate suggesting that James is opposed to Paul’s salvation by faith alone.  Does engaging in theological debate itself sometimes keep us from taking action and doing good deeds?  What kind of deeds would bring faith to life in us?  What kind of deeds does the book of James envision for us?  Lord, I don’t want to be on the sidelines, sitting the bench; I want to “live” the life you called me to.  Holy Spirit, direct my actions today.

Leadership Devo of the Week: Acts 24:25

“As Paul talked about righteousness, self-control and the judgment to come, Felix was afraid and said, “That’s enough for now!” Paul’s speaking about “faith in Jesus Christ (vs 24), included talk about “righteousness, self-control, and the judgment.” Are these themes part of our preaching/teaching of faith in Jesus Christ today?  What do you think Paul said about these? Why was Felix afraid? In our Christian leadership, preaching, and teaching are we afraid to preach that which causes fear in the hearts of those not surrendered to God. Give us courage to preach the full Christian faith, O God. Amen.