A Devotion May Be Someone's Only Bible

Spirit & Soul

Spirit and Soul is all about eternity. Life ever after with a God who has prepared a place in advance for us. Dig into the Word. Search out your heart. Contemplate where you will spend eternity. . .then choose to offer your life to God.

God's in Charge

God wakes you up for a reason.

There were days when I lay on my bed and cried my eyes out because I felt my life would amount to nothing. I felt so incapable that I wondered how I was ever going to make it. The burden of living with this feeling was removed when these words in Genesis took hold of my heart. Then God said, "Let the waters below the heavens be gathered into one place, and let the dry land appear," and it was so. 

In the beginning, the earth was like a ball of water, but there was land covered by the water. The land was not called into being as light but was commanded to appear from underneath the waters. On this hidden land, everything that was, is, and will be existed. Trees sprouted, animals were created, and humans were formed. On this earth, life began and still remains.

God knows our potential because He placed it in us and sees us for who we are. He is able to make our lives beautiful and devoid of fear and worry if we’ll place our lives in His hands and trust Him. There are things hidden in us that only God knows and can work with in ways beyond our imagination.

Trying to put the pieces of our lives together will amount to nothing if we put aside the center piece who puts everything into perspective. If we hand everything to God, He will not only lead us into each day but will also build our lives into ones whose impact has no boundaries. At their end, He will look on them and say they have been good. God is in charge and all beautiful things emanate from Him.

Worry less, pray more, trust daily, and smile more. God loves you and everything will fall into place.

(Photo courtesy of pixabay.)

(For more devotions, visit Christian Devotions.)

The Story of You

Everybody loves a happy ending.

I was underwhelmed by the conclusion of a movie, causing me to wonder what kind of ending is being written to the story of my life. We have much to do with the writing of our own story. Our daily choices are ink on the pages, and those choices will hopefully add up to beautiful tales of courage, sacrifices, lives well-lived, and people well-loved.

Jehoram, king of Judah, and Tabitha, maker of clothing, were strikingly different. They were separated by centuries, station, and gender. One lived in infamy while the other lived in relative obscurity.  

Jehoram had the potential to make a name for himself, to rule rightly, and to be a blessing to the people he ruled, but he died to no one’s regret. Wives, children, and a kingdom full of subjects, and not one person regretted his death. A sad commentary.

Then we meet Tabitha "who was always doing good and helping the poor” (Acts 9). She became sick and died. The widows of her community gathered, cried, and showed Peter the robes and clothing she had made for them. One after another, they explained how her love had impacted them. Her loss was so unacceptable that Peter raised her from the dead.

Tabitha was a simple woman who devoted her life to Jesus and touched the lives of all around her. Jehoram was a king who devoted his life to himself and touched no one. When their end was written, the tally of their daily choices added up differently.

Tabitha gave. She allowed her schedule to be interrupted for the good of others. She lived the life God had granted her. She didn't wait for the right time or perfect circumstance to make an impact. Jehoram took. He made life about himself. Although he had a platform for large-scale impact, he squandered his opportunity.

Our stories are still being written. How they end is up to us. God can empower us to live in such a way that we’ll hear Him say, "Well done, good and faithful servant" after our earthly chapter has been penned.

Go live your masterpiece!

(Photo courtesy of pixabay.)

(For more devotions, visit Chritian Devotions.)

My New Life

It was my first Easter Sunday without my husband.

As I looked around the church where my husband and I had worshiped and served together, I saw couples sitting side by side. The scene emphasized the undeniable fact that I was now alone.

This was my husband’s first full-time ministry church. At the age of forty-five, he had given up the highest paying job he’d ever had. But it was in this church that he began having an affair with a young wife who was the mother of two small children. From this church, they sped away in the darkness of midnight.

On that first Easter Sunday without my husband, the sermon was the joyful message of Christ’s resurrection. It was a jubilant proclamation that the grave could not keep Jesus a prisoner. A promise He had risen from the tomb to bring new life to all who would accept His gift. To those who had suffered losses and were mourning, He gave the assurance and the hope of new beginnings.

As I sat alone on that Easter morning, I felt pain and loneliness, but I was also aware of the Lord’s presence. I experienced the joy of His Spirit as I accepted the new life He offered.

I could have stayed home that Easter morning, telling myself it would be too painful to attend the worship service alone.  Had I made that decision, I would have missed the blessing and the joy awaiting me.

If you have experienced the loss of a loved one—either through death or divorce—you can choose to dwell on the memories of the past or you can move forward to the new life Jesus Christ waits to give you.

(Photo courtesy of pixabay.)

(For more devotions, visit Christian Devotions.)

Little Elephants, Big Difference

“No matter how old you are, you can still find ways to help.”

That insight belonged to eight-year-old Cee Cee Creech, who raised more than $3,400 in pledges for tornado victims in Joplin, Missouri, by knitting twelve hand-size elephants.

When the family first learned of the devastation in Joplin, Cee Cee’s father and brother had just returned from a disaster relief trip where they helped flood victims. Cee Cee saw a need and wanted to help as well. “I heard about the tornado, and I just thought those kids would really need something to give them hope.” So she begged her mother to help her find a way. She knew her mother made elephants as gifts for church mission trips. Seeing a possibility, she declared, “I could knit elephants to send to the children.”

Her mom established the social-networking website, “Elephants Remember Joplin” where anyone could sponsor a single elephant or an entire herd. Contributions trickled in at first, but her initial supporters began spreading the word. Excitement built as Cee Cee and her family learned that Joplin residents were checking her site. They could hardly believe it when a hometown reporter said he first heard her story from someone in New Zealand.

A few people pledged one dollar per elephant. One woman had no money but said she would donate an hour to the Red Cross. A Springfield, Missouri, organization, Little Hands Big Helpers: Empowering Kids to Make a Difference, learned of Cee Cee’s story and decided she needed to deliver her elephants personally. They paid for the family’s lodging and meals while in Joplin.  

The family thought the project would end once they delivered Cee Cee’s twelve elephants. But the story of Cee Cee and her elephants continues to unfold. A family friend gave her the catch phrase, “Sometimes a little elephant can make a big difference.”

Cee Cee has learned—by her family’s example and through personal experience—the grace of giving. The kind the apostle Paul wrote about. The grace that comes to the giver as well as the recipients. Sharing God’s love in practical ways has become her way of life.

Anyone of any age can share in that same grace. God can use any talent and any resource to bless others in Jesus’ name.     

Offer your little bit to God, and allow Him to make a big difference through you.

(Photo courtesy of pixabay.)

(For more devotions, visit Christian Devotions.)

The Secret Path to Fulfillment

My hands clenched the rough granite with the ferocity of a woman who knows one wrong move will result in one of two things: death or serious injury.

I was nearing the summit of a 12,000-foot peak in Wyoming’s Wind River Range—at least ten miles from the nearest sign of human civilization. The shift of my left foot sent a cascade of debris tumbling down the mountain. “I shouldn’t have come here alone,” I whispered. The situation was precarious. I needed to scale a ten-foot long, six-inch wide ledge to get to the next “safe” spot of the climb.

I was perched on the mountainside for one simple reason: I longed for fulfillment in a life of mundane tasks and responsibilities that seemed to drain the life from me—one long week after another. Wilderness adventure brought life back to my soul.

What I didn’t realize at the time was that a life of fulfillment isn’t found through a series of adrenaline-surged experiences, but by following Christ’s command. If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross daily and follow Me.This verse points to a startling truth. The more self-centered I am, the less fulfilled I will be. Christ calls His followers to die to self and follow Him. The secret to a fulfilled life is to stop living for myself and start living for Christ.

Living for Christ means making personal sacrifices so we will grow in relationship with Him. It means surrendering time, energy, and money to follow His command to make disciples. And it is not idolizing our passions for entertainment, comfort, and adventure. Instead, we sacrifice these luxuries so we might share His love with others.

If you aren’t experiencing a fulfilled life, a shift toward others-centered living will breathe vitality into your soul. Consider where you can lay down your desires and join Christ on the exciting journey of living for others today.

Christ is calling you to greater heights of fulfillment. Find those heights through the sacrifice of investing in others.

(Photo courtesy of pixabay.)

(For more devotions, visit Christian Devotions.)

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