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December 20, 2016, 12:00 AM

Tuesday's Devotional

Good Morning Everyone,

Let's look at Genesis 39:23

"The keeper of the prison did not look into anything that was under Joseph’s authority, because the Lord was with him; and whatever he did, the Lord made it prosper."

Think about Joseph’s circumstances. He was a slave, bound to his master. Yet the Bible says he was prosperous. We have this idea in America that prosperity is related to money and possessions, but prosperity in the eyes of God refers to character. If we are true to the Lord and His Word, we are rich. If we are in His will, we have the assurance that all things work together for good, something we certainly see evident in the life of Joseph.

It has been said that God doesn’t do anything or allow anything to be done to us that we would not choose for ourselves, if we could only see things from His perspective. If we could see every event exactly as God does, we would do things the very same way. He sees the end from the beginning, how everything fits together, and how necessary some of our hurts and disappointments are. Prosperity isn’t a matter of circumstances, but a matter of character. When Scripture says that Joseph was prosperous, it has little to do with how many material possessions he had, but with how much of him God had. Even though a slave, Joseph was a prosperous man.

Bro. Paul

December 19, 2016, 12:00 AM

Monday's Devotional

Good Morning Everyone,

Let's look at Acts 23:1

"Then Paul, looking earnestly at the council, said, "Men and brethren, I have lived in all good conscience before God until this day.""

On August 18, 1788, as he prepared to become the first President of the United States, George Washington wrote to Alexander Hamilton, saying, "I hope I shall possess firmness and virtue enough to maintain what I consider the most enviable of all titles, the character of an honest man."

Character is to leadership what wood is to a tree—that inner "stuff" that provides its sturdiness and strength. Many a tree has blown down because it rotted on the inside. The notion that a person’s personal life has no bearing on his or her leadership is an unbiblical streak of postmodern thinking that ravages not only leaders, but their followers as well.

Each of us is a leader—of a group, a home, a project, a segment of God’s work. We need to maintain a clear conscience and be worthy of the calling we’ve received. "I myself always strive to have a conscience without offense toward God and men," wrote Paul in Acts 14:16. That’s important not only for ourselves, but for those we’re influencing.

Bro. Paul

December 16, 2016, 12:00 AM

Friday's Devotional

Good Morning Everyone,

Let's look at Psalm 127:3

"Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb is a reward."

The Bible is clear in teaching us that our children are a gift from God. As far back as Genesis 4:1 we find Eve declaring that her son Cain had been given to her by God. Later, Abraham and Sarah had their son Isaac as a direct result of God’s intervention in opening Sarah’s womb. God also opened the womb of Leah, Jacob’s first wife, and Rachel, also his wife. Ruth was also made a mother due to God’s intervention (Ruth 4:13).

The little ones God gives to us do not come by accident or as interruptions to our lives. They come as God’s good gifts to us, entrusted as a stewardship from Him. Children are not only given to receive love from their parents but to be God’s teachers. What parent would say they have not learned about sacrifice, patience, priorities—not to mention learned more about God’s love for us, His children—as a result of being a parent? Children are a gift for which parents should thank God every day.

Bro. Paul

December 15, 2016, 12:00 AM

Thursday's Devotional

Good Morning Everyone,

Let's look at Luke 12:22–23

"Do not worry about your life, what you will eat; nor about the body, what you will put on. Life is more than food, and the body is more than clothing."

Let me begin by stating something that you may or may not agree with: Worry is sin. Worry is not part of our personality, it is not something to be excused because "everybody does it." From God’s perspective, worry is sin. But in order to clarify this (itimportant to know when we are sinning and when we are not), let’s separate worry from concern.

It is certainly right to be concerned about things which are your responsibility and over which you exercise control. God expects us to be responsible, to be concerned that we follow through on what is ours to do. But worry is concerning yourself about things over which you have no control. Worry is allowing care and concern to escalate beyond the realm of responsibility and into a realm in which you have no authority or control—God’s realm. And that kind of concern, which is worry, is sin.

When we worry, we deny the faithfulness of God— and that is why worry is sin.

Bro. Paul

December 14, 2016, 12:00 AM

Wednesday's Devotional

Good Morning Everyone,

Let's look at 1 Samuel 3:4

"The Lord called Samuel. And he answered, "Here I am!""

Ernest Hemingway once lamented, "I live in a vacuum that is as lonely as a radio tube when the batteries are dead and there is no current to plug into."

Not so the Christian. We have a mission and a message. God has placed us on earth for a brief time to do an urgent work. Our lives have purpose, and all our days are scheduled in His perfect will. We travel an appointed way. What is the burning vision for your life? What does God want you to do?

Ask Him to show you. Read His Word, seeking His will for your life. Tell Him you’re available. Say, like Samuel, "Here I am." Find something to do and begin doing it. Find a need and begin filling it.

Perhaps it’s visiting someone in the hospital or nursing home or working with children in the church nursery. Perhaps it’s singing in the choir, making visits for your church, or serving as an usher or greeter on Sunday morning.

Be faithful in that smaller thing, and the Lord will give you more work to do, and more and more—all for His glory. He wants to use you. He has a purpose for your life, and He alone can give you a vision of His will.

Bro. Paul

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