A Devotion May Be Someone's Only Bible

Spirit & Body

We have two bodies as such. The physical body and our spiritual body. The Spirit is an important part of both. Giving our hearts to Christ brings that spiritual body into balance and therefore, helps us understand the ups and downs of the physical body – even accept them when others cannot.

Finding Strength and Peace in God's Grace

I had done it again. My overachieving personality caused me to push my schedule to the brink of my sanity and capability.

Stressed and overwhelmed, I snapped at my family and spun my wheels rather than completing the items on my to-do list. As I worked to tweak, change, and reschedule my plans, I asked myself if there was a better way to manage my time. God brought this Scripture to mind: But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness."

God’s grace is more than enough to handle any problem. His unmerited favor is beautiful, life-changing, and sufficient. Trying to go through life on our own and resorting to our own solutions rather than seeking God’s power is tempting, but God’s grace is sufficient for all our needs.

I blinked back tears as I reflected on the last few days, recalling how I had tried to handle them without seeking God’s help. We have a piece of sacred art in our home that shows the beauty of the cross. As I began to pray, I looked to the wall where it hangs and thanked God for His grace. My attitude changed as I shifted my thoughts from what I could accomplish to what God could do through me.

What God can do through us is what truly matters. On my own, I can check items off my to-do list, but only through God’s power can I accomplish anything of eternal significance. His power shines in my weakness, giving me strength to see it through.

When you are struggling with something that should be turned over to God in prayer, or when you need the joy that comes from resting in the grace He freely gives, take a moment to write or memorize 2 Corinthians 12:9 as a reminder of God’s sufficient grace. Our loving Father is equipped to handle our needs while refining us in a way that draws us closer to Him.

Find your rest and strength in God’s amazing grace.

(Photo courtesy of pixabay.)

(For more devotions, visit Christian Devotions.)

Lost in the Mountains

I hopped in the car and set out for a breezy mountain drive.

With all my friends at work and boredom setting in, the snow-covered peaks beckoned me. As I meandered through twisting passes and hugged each curve, I sang along with the radio. But soon every mountain looked alike. I hadn’t noticed the sun dipping in the sky.

This spontaneous adventure pre-dated GPS and cell phones, so my location remained a mystery. Since my lemon of a car leaked oil, I feared the oil would drain completely, causing the car to seize. Being stranded somewhere in the Colorado Rockies at night—vulnerable to a bobcat attack—did not sound fun.

I pulled over, opened the hood, and checked the oil dipstick. Since only a speck of oil showed on the stick, I hoped the next town was near. As panic welled up inside me, I sent up a quick prayer and rounded a bend.

Twenty minutes later, the road led to a town with a gas station and a Sonic fast-food restaurant. I breathed a sigh of relief, grabbed a soggy hamburger, dumped a few quarts of oil into my car, and begged the cashier for directions back to Denver. When I arrived home after dark, I flopped onto my cozy bed and thanked God for safety.

Generally, I like to know my whereabouts and where to go next. I enjoy comfort and ease. But sometimes I feel lost in the mountains. On stressful days, I perceive the oil draining out of me.

Job reassures us that God sees our every move. He never wonders about where we wander to. He allows our directional challenges and car troubles to refine us. Just as fire melts gold in order to drain off impurities, God allows trials to skim off our sin. While not fun, the resulting “gold” in our lives shines.

Rest assured that even when we have gone astray, God pinpoints our location. Our struggles do not surprise Him.

The next time you feel lost or drained, remember this: God uses your challenges to turn you into gold. 

(Photo courtesy of pixabay.)

(For more devotions, visit Christian Devotions.)

Taming Life's Lions

The lion tamer—by using his intellect—controls a bigger, stronger, faster, and more aggressive animal.

A commencement speaker stressed the value of a good education—a common topic for graduates. He also spoke about lions and their tamers. Not so common. Then he tied his thoughts together with a question: “Who holds more power, the lion or the man? The lion is bigger, stronger, runs faster, and wins more fights. But, who has the other jumping through hoops?”

Like the lion tamer, we can use and develop the resources at our disposal, we can reach for the higher functioning of God’s best, or we can allow our baser instincts—our lions—to control us. Our choices affect us and those we influence.

We can disregard other’s needs and desires, or we can demonstrate respect for family, friends, and acquaintances—acknowledging their God-given worth. We can lie, cheat, and steal—continually looking out for number one, or we can choose the high road—living with integrity and accepting only what rightfully belongs to us.

We can destroy others with actions and words, or we can avoid gossip, slander, and any potential harm. We can spend our lives accumulating wealth, titles, and power that end at our death or possibly sooner, or we can invest in a life of service to God and others that pays dividends long after we leave this world.

We can follow the party crowd—indulging in every whim and eventually paying the price of addictions, ruined relationships, health issues, and lost potential, or we can take care of the one and only self God gave us.

We can ignore God’s offer of love, forgiveness, and holy living—enjoying a brief stint of self-centered fun followed by an eternity separated from our only source of joy—or we can honor God by giving our all to the One who gave Himself for us. By doing so, we gain a joy-filled life now, regardless of circumstances, followed by an eternity of unimaginable blessings.

Remain alert and vigilant to Satan’s temptations. Tame your lions and spread the word. God calls you to be your best.

(Photo courtesy of pexels.)

(For more devotions, visit Christian Devotions.)

Battlefield Attire

Although the alarm clock continually buzzed for what seemed like forever, I could not wake up on that rainy Monday.

My right foot slowly pushed back the covers to test the severity of the chilly room temperature. Brrr, I thought, while continuing to roll over for a quick and final snooze. The alarm clock was set to my regular talk radio show that was now blaring with news reports which immediately got my attention.

Domestic and international terrorism, continued and declining recession, and dangerous road rage causing gridlock traffic were media headlines flooding the airwaves with negative vibes. Just as the morning had gotten off to a bad start, the phone rang incessantly. Friends and relatives were blaming and complaining about everything.

I finally managed to stand and walk around my house. But by the time I left the bathroom to get dressed, I felt beaten and worn down. “Why would anyone call me to argue in the morning?” I murmured to myself. The answer to that question was lodged in my short-term memory from the previous night’s Bible study lesson. The answer was from God’s instruction to Joshua.

When the ruckus of the day began, I remember feeling confused and overloaded—but not discouraged. Taking the advice of the apostle Paul given to the saints at Ephesus, I chose a second layer of battlefield attire to accompany my standard business work clothes. Rather than selecting a particular outfit or wearing my favorite Anne Klein shoes, I put on the whole armor of God.

By the time I finished dressing, I felt clad with the breastplate of righteousness. My feet were shod with the gospel of peace. My upper body was covered by the shield of faith and the helmet of salvation. And my entire body, mind, and soul were protected by the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.   

Several years have passed since that harrowing, rainy morning with its chock-filled sleepiness and unwanted distractions. Fortunately, it was an awakening experience to the power sources available, but often underutilized, through a relationship with Christ. Through His indwelling Spirit, I was able to stand in an uncertain world where I was faced with negativity.   

Life’s challenges can be conquered when you are clothed in Christ.

(Photo courtesy of pixabay.)

(For more devotions, visit Christian Devotions.)

Even if You Don't

At times, pain and suffering feel as if they take over our minds, bodies, and spirits.

A popular Christian song contains the phrase, “even if You don’t.” When faced with trials and tribulations, we cry out to our Father in heaven to rescue us from the things we’re experiencing. None of us want to go through problems.

Scripture says God will never leave or forsake us. He walks through the valley of the shadow of death with us when circumstances are overwhelming.

Despite reading verses that say God is with us, understanding why we’re experiencing illness, job loss, divorce, estrangement from our children, and death of loved ones is difficult. Sometimes, it’s almost all we can do to face another day – even another moment.

God’s love and mercy hold us during the moments when we cannot lift our heads. He promises His faithfulness when we doubt, His lovingkindness when we struggle, His grace when we’re angry, and His forgiveness when we seek our own paths.

Even when God permits painful trials and tribulations to enter our lives, our hope is in Yeshua, the Messiah, the Son of God. Our hope is for eternal life in heaven with Him who sits at the right hand of God. Nothing can separate us from the love of the one who created us.

When you cannot stand, let God’s arms cradle you close to His heart. When life is more than you can handle, hang on to Yeshua. He will get you through what you could not survive on your own. 

(Photo courtesy of pixabay.)

(For more devotions, visit Christian Devotions.)

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