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.

PLS

A young man moved hundreds of miles away from home. He wanted not only to go to college but also to find out what God had to say about things.

He chose a small private school that had a good reputation for accurate study of the manual for life: the Bible. Not wanting to be a pastor, he still thought he’d learn what the Bible said about God’s opinions and then figure life out from there. He was determined and stubborn. His dad, a construction man, had always said, “Give me a stubborn boy anytime as they are the only ones who have a chance of surviving.” 

One day he learned a life-changing verse: 2 Timothy 1:7. The verse made him feel he was getting somewhere. It seemed God was telling people not to be afraid but to live the way He made them when He saved them. God gives His children three special gifts when He makes them a new creation: power, love, and a sound mind. And He desires that each of His children live out these gifts.

From then on, when the young man thought about how he was to live, these letters, PLS, came to mind. Later, he learned that only by yielding to the Spirit of God could his second-birth birthday gifts operate in harmony. He experienced a slow and painful growth process for a long time, yet he stubbornly kept going, sometimes through the sorrow and tears of failure. He learned balancing each quality was God’s desire for how believers should live.

Release each day what God has given His children: power, love, and a sound mind. Even in the face of paralyzing fear, let PLS be your slogan as you stop being anxious and claim what you have been given.

(Photo courtesy of pixabay.)

(For more devotions, visit Christian Devotions.)



Lust for Power

The large semi rolled along the highway in front of me. On the tailgate, I read, “If you can’t slow down, smile as you go under.”

An onerous warning to slow down and travel at a safe distance. Yet not all drivers are able to control their lust for power behind the wheel.

When Joseph was seventeen, he foolishly shared a dream he had with his older brothers. Jacob, his father, had previously given him a special varicoloured cloak which caused jealousy among his siblings. When Joseph told them they would bow down to him one day as interpreted in his dream, the siblings’ hatred increased.

At that age Joseph could not control himself. The consequences were dire. He was thrown  into a pit and then sold as a slave to the Egyptians. There he alternated between periods of time in power, time in prison, and time in power again.

When his family suffered famine in their land, they travelled to Egypt to obtain food. They did not recognise Joseph, but he knew who they were. Joseph had an opportunity to take revenge and to exert power over his family, but after weeping over the encounter, he controlled himself and served them a meal.

Joseph could have gloated and reminded them of his dream. But he didn’t. He slowed down and responded in the nature of God’s goodness.

In many areas of our lives we, too, have the choice to heed warnings from the Lord and to control our tongue and actions. When we hear a still, small voice saying slow down, it would be wise to do so.

Whether it’s speeding or controlling a lust for power, you will live longer and please your heavenly Father if you don’t do either.

(Photo courtesy of pixabay.)

(For more devotions, visit Christian Devotions.)



Lessons from a Leaf Blower and Fallen Leaves

How like fallen leaves we are.

While working in the yard one blustery autumn weekend, I blew the fallen leaves from the driveway of our home. Most of them fluttered away with the first pass of the blast from the leaf blower. Other more stubborn leaves flitted into the air and settled back to where they originally lay. After several arcing blasts, I noticed some leaves didn’t move at all. Their edges were near the blower’s air flow and nestled closely to the ground. The blower’s air aerodynamically blew over them. To clear them from the driveway, I had to take a different angle to get past their shaped resistance.

The Holy Spirit blows across our lives to clean and transform our landscapes. In His ever-transforming work, He speaks His truth and clears the clutter. Some of us respond quickly to His initial puffs. Others require second or third passes before responding to His intensifying nudges. Then there are some of us who remain resistant until He moves in such a way that engages us in what He is trying to do.

God’s Spirit speaks truth in a world of deception, convicts hearts set on self-destruction, and transforms those He indwells—propelling the willing into their God-appointed destinies. As our Helper and Comforter, He walks beside us, encouraging and orchestrating events.

Just as the leaves on the driveway, we all have different responses. However, just as my intention was to have a clean driveway, God’s ultimate purpose will prevail. He offers us the privilege to partner with Him in His work. But before we can serve Him, we must be pliable inwardly—immediately responding, never resisting, never quenching His efforts.

Yielding to God’s Spirit involves trusting Him to work all things in our lives for good. Our resistance is simply holding on to what is not good.

Lift the edges of your life’s leaves, and allow the wind of God’s Spirit to launch you as He wills.

(Photo courtesy of pixabay.)

(For more devotions, visit Christian Devotions.)



The Value of Ordinary People

At the infamous Millennium Hotel in St. Louis, Charlton is the doorman who adjusts his workday and evening shifts to accommodate the daily arrival of business travelers. Maurice works a part-time job as the nighttime neighborhood security guard in Cordova, Tennessee, a quiet Memphis suburb. And if you need a soothing manicure, Blair is the esthetician to visit at a popular Maryland mall.

I’ve met and come to know these young, energetic millennials during work travel and in my local comings and goings. They are great at what they do and represent America’s finest. These young people live a regular life without a great deal of flair or pretense. They are courageous, confident, kind, smart, and exude the influence of a good teacher. Each of them exemplifies similar characteristics of being a follower of Christ.

Many ordinary facts about the life of Jesus, we don’t usually hear about in our Sunday sermon. For example, Jesus never traveled over 200 miles from His birthplace. He never went to college or wrote a book. In today’s world, He would be labeled as an ordinary man much like the apostles Paul and John. But it was the influence Jesus had on His disciples that made them undeniably recognized as men worthy to be called followers of Christ.

For the Christian, being born ordinary is one of the best gifts for a fulfilling life as described in scriptural passages. The Scriptures clearly teach how the power of the Holy Spirit transforms ordinary into extraordinary.  

Just think of the extraordinary value my young friends bring to the world. Hotel guests are greeted with welcoming hospitality by the doorman. Neighbors feel secure by the attentive security guard who watches over the community as it sleeps during the night. Mall shoppers are comforted by a friendly, skilled man with a holistic approach to keeping hands pretty for the special one who will hold them.

Through His unconditional love, Jesus taught the world about the value of ordinary people by being an extraordinary Savior.

Make your ordinary life extraordinary … with Christ.

(Photo courtesy of pixabay.)

(For more devotions, visit Christian Devotions.)



Hope in Sorrow

My heart raced. I didn’t know how to respond.

A friend asked me to watch the movie I Can Only Imagine. I hated the song. Ten years ago, another good friend was brutally murdered. She was young, beautiful, and a solid Christian. They played the song at her funeral.

I decided to watch the movie to work through my lingering pain. I sobbed during the song and relived the hurt of letting go. My good friend’s mother had lost her husband earlier that year and now her only daughter. She encouraged the 600 funeral attendees to get right with God because they never knew when their time would come. My friend’s life honored God, even in her death.

God reminded me I don’t sorrow as those with no hope. I would see my friend again. During the song, God gave me a vision of her dancing before Him. Someday we’d dance before Him together. She just has a head start.

There is more than this life, and we have hope beyond the grave. This world is not our home. We look forward to heaven when we won’t have to say goodbye. Although we have troubles, Christ has conquered death. One day, He will make all things new and wipe away all our tears.

Maybe you’ve lost someone you loved—well before their time—and you are hurting. You don’t have to carry the hurt anymore. Take it to Jesus and ask Him to show you His perspective. If that person knew Jesus, you have hope to see them again. If they didn’t know Jesus, use the reminder to spur you to share Christ with a lost and dying world.

Let God help you find hope, even in sorrow.

(Photo courtesy of pixabay.)

(For more devotions, visit Christian Devotions.)



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