God Wants The Person More Than Perfection

AUTHOR: PE

THEME: God Wants The Person More Than Perfection

KEY VERSES:

‘My sacrifice, O God, is a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart

you, God, will not despise.’

Psalm 51:17

‘Does the LORD delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as much as in obeying the LORD? To obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed is better than the fat of rams’

1 Samuel 15:22

MESSAGE:

God wants the person not their perfection. God created us for relationship, he is jealous for our heart. It pains him when we give our heart to things that just end up damaging us. It pains him because he loves us so much and hates to see us hurt ourselves. These things aren’t only stuff like alcohol or drugs or other addictions, but even good things like our career and family. God must come first in our hearts, that’s all he wants. If we look at the old testament, before the Bible was even written we see the hero’s of our faith (Hebrews 11). These men and woman gave their lives and their hearts to God, but made so many mistakes! Many of them were murders (moses), and liars (Jacob). Their lives were far from perfect. They made so many mistakes and had so many issues, so why are they regarded HERO’s of the faith?? Their lives were examples of brokenness not perfection!

They are hero’s of the faith because they gave their lives and what they had, to God through faith. They trusted God and put their faith in him and so it was accredited to them as righteousness. It was their faith that made them right before God, not their perfect lives! God wants the relationship he created you for, not regulations or rules kept. In Romans 7:15 Paul writes: ‘I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.’ God knows that we cannot attain perfection. He knows we will not be able to serve him as we desire, he knows we will fail. It is not perfection he commands us to do, rather it is our hearts that he commands us to give. He asks us for our hearts because that is what is best for us; while giving our heart to other things brings death, giving our heart to God brings life.

Know that God brings perfection. He has done the work through Christ! He supplies the perfection we just need to supply our heart! Philippians 2:12-13: if we continue to work out our salvation, God works in us to help us to do what pleases him! He slowly moulds us into the likeness of his son. Perfection is Gods work, submission is our work. Give your heart to God, submit your will and time and energy to him and he will deal with the imperfection. Just as a builder needs planning permission before he builds, all God needs is a heart to submitted to him and he can work in it and change it.

PRAY: Father help us to truly realise in our hearts that you desire relationship more than our goodness. Help us to see that you provide the perfection if we allow you to work in our brokenness. Help us to live in submission to you. In Jesus name, Amen.

What Is Your Life’s Top Ambition?

AUTHOR: JIFAN/LC

THEME: WHAT IS YOUR LIFE’S TOP AMBITION?

VERSE: Romans 15:20-21 It has always been my ambition to preach the gospel where Christ was not known, so that I would not be building on someone else’s foundation. Rather, as it is written: Those who were not told about him will see, and those who have not heard will understand.

MESSAGE:

– Paul’s holy ambition for God’s world testifies to our role on this planet. It was more important for him to preach in areas that had not yet heard the Gospel. In this world you will have hundreds of ambitions but what is your top life’s ambition as a believer in Jesus Christ? Lets imitate Paul’s top ambition of seeing that Jesus be preached or shared everywhere especially to/with people not yet believed in Jesus. Remember that wherever you are there are people need to believe in Jesus and be discipled. Dont wait to be given time to preach in your local church please go preach to people in streets, business centers, hotels, offices, stations, bars or pubs, restaurants, night clubs, markets, schools or universities, studios,training camps, hospitals, etc and bridge to bible believing churches those people getting saved in different places you are preaching for more discipleship because we are to make disciples. BE INVOLVED in preaching Jesus where is not yet be preached or fully help people to understand how they can believe in Him for them to be saved eg your friends, fellow students, work mates, family members, neighborhood, your state/country/continent/world etc. just be willing to be involved Jesus will do it through you to His glory

As you pray for yourself to God in line with the today’s verse and your revelations from the same verse, remember to pray also for God’s workers to be sent to mission field especially to where Jesus is not known. Pray for one person whom you can go to and share Jesus. For with God all will go well while sharing Jesus.

Through Jesus Christ,Together we can have courage and passion to go and preach Jesus where He has not been preached or shared fully starting from wherever we are with the knowledge available in us provided that we have Jesus in us and with us. REMEMBER ALWAYS THAT MORE PEOPLE IN DIFFERENT NATIONS HAVE NEVER HEARD THE GOSPEL AND GOD’S DESIRE IS THAT EVERYONE IN ALL NATIONS HEAR HIS LIFE GIVING GOSPEL. THEREFORE, PRAY AND MOBILISE YOUR LOCAL CHURCH TO SEND MORE WORKERS TO AREAS WHERE JESUS IS NOT YET BEEN PREACHED OR EXPLAINED FULLY SO THAT PEOPLE CAN CALL UPON HIM FOR THIER SALVATION.

CHOOSE TO BE HAPPY AND LIVE POSITIVELY IN THIS WORLD FULL OF CHALLENGES. JESUS CAN HELP YOU LIVE THIS LIFE

Just Tell And Share What Jesus Has Done And Is Doing In Your Life

TODAY’S AUTHOR: LC

THEME: JUST TELL AND SHARE WHAT JESUS HAS DONE AND IS DOING IN YOUR LIFE

KEY VERSE: John 4:39 Many of the Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman’s testimony, “He told me everything I ever did.”

MESSAGE: MANY SAMARITANS BELIEVED IN JESUS THROUGH THE SHORT TESTIMONY OF THIS SAMARITAN WOMAN AND THIS WAS HER TESTIMONY SHE TOLD THEM “HE TOLD ME EVERYTHING I EVER DID” It’s really that simple. We ought to let the Samaritan woman in John 4 be our MENTOR as we are helping others to believe in Jesus. She hadn’t even been saved for A DAY OR WEEK and she had already led a multitude of people to Jesus JUST THROUGH HER SHORT TESTIMONY.And many of the Samaritans of that city believed on JESUS for the saying of the woman, which testified, “He told me all that ever I did”. All she did WAS TELL/SHARE WITH OTHERS WHAT JESUS DID FOR HER, and ask them to come find out for themselves “COME, SEE A MAN, which told me all things that ever I did: is not this the Christ? Then they went out of the city, and came to Jesus.” My friends and family, i can assure You that your testimony will bring people to Jesus for salvation. You can help more people to believe in Jesus through your willingness to tell and share what Jesus has done and doing in your life. Point people to Jesus for salvation

WHAT TO DO you need JUST to tell others how precious Jesus is to you, and what He has done for you, doing in your life and then ask them if you could please share the good news of Christ crucified with them.Most people won’t listen, so expect this upfront; but some WILL listen, and will get saved. JUST KEEP ON TELLING AND SHARING YOUR TESTIMONY HERE, THERE AND EVERYWHERE AND MANY WILL BELIEVE IN JESUS. KEEP ON SOWING GOD’S WORDS     “Therefore said he unto them, The harvest truly is great, but the labourers are few: PRAY ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth labourers into his harvest”   (Luke 10:2).

Pray for a person you can go to and tell what God has done and doing in your life with the intention of helping him or her believe in Jesus. All our stories/testimonies/sharings must point people only to JESUS CHRIST not to ourselves or ministries or churches or organizations or countries or departments. Help people to see Jesus not you

What Must We Do To Inherit Eternal Life?

AUTHOR: PE

THEME: What Must We Do To Inherit Eternal Life?

KEY VERSES:

Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.”

Mark 10:15

Jesus looked at him and loved him. “One thing you lack,” he said. “Go, sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”

Mark 10:21

Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but not with God; all things are possible with God.”

Mark 10:27

“We are going up to Jerusalem,” he said, “and the Son of Man will be delivered over to the chief priests and the teachers of the law. They will condemn him to death and will hand him over to the Gentiles, who will mock him and spit on him, flog him and kill him. Three days later he will rise.”

Mark 33-34 NIV

MESSAGE:

This passage very clearly answers the question asked in the ‘theme’ of today’s devotional. What must we do to receive eternal life? Well here Mark sandwiches the answer with two key issues surrounding the answer (these we will discuss later). The question is directly asked by the rich young man in verse 17: ‘what must I do to inherit eternal life?’. Jesus responds by reminding the man that he is God (‘why do you call me good? Only God is good’). He then goes on to say that he must keep Gods commandments and give up everything he has and follow Him. There is no escaping it, to inherit eternal life, we must give up everything. He reminds the rich young man that he is God, because only God has the authority to request everything we have, and only God has the authority to give eternal life.

“Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me and for the gospel will save it.” Mark 8:34-35.

Now does that mean we must no sell everything we have and give it all to the poor? No it doesn’t, but it does mean that if God asks us to give all we have away, then we must be prepared to do it. What it means is that you’re time, you’re money and you’re energy is not your own. It means that even before God asks you to do something, you must be willing to do it, no matter the cost.

Now obviously for us this is pretty much an impossible request, and God knows this. That is why Jesus said ‘all things are possible with God’. Now there are two barriers that remain for this young man. First how does he know he can trust Jesus and secondly he doesn’t know how God makes all things possible for him. Both these issues are dealt with by the passages surrounding this big question about eternal life.

Before the passage about the rich young man Jesus states that ‘whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it’. This addresses the first barrier, how can he trust Jesus. To inherit eternal life child-like faith is required. A child receives the kingdom of God with joy, accepting the truth as it is given to them. They do not try to find faults and flaws, they do not look to poke holes, but they accept what they cannot understand and wholeheartedly believe. It is this wholehearted and unquestioning faith that Jesus says is necessary to enter the kingdom of God. Now it is good to ask questions to learn and to grow in your faith, but there are certain things we can never understand. If we could understand God, God wouldn’t be God; how can the created understand the creator? Can you find me a scholar who completely understands the nature of Jesus? Him being both God and man and how he bore the sin of the world? It is in these mysteries we must have child-like faith. If we do not we will end up rejecting out only hope of eternal life.

The second barrier is how can God make all things possible so that the Rich young man can receive eternal life? How does God make it possible when it is harder to make a ‘camel go through the eye of a needle’? This question is answered through the passage following the rich young man. Jesus simply foretells his death. He states that he will be killed and will rise again on the third day. It is through his death and resurrection that we may inherit eternal life, not through anything we do or any power that we have. It is because Jesus died and rose again, defeating death, that we may not perish but have eternal life; it was ‘impossible with man, but not with God. For all things are possible with God.’

Here Mark clearly answers one of the biggest questions that face humanity, and then leaves it up to us. Do we accept this offer of eternal life, or do we ignore it to accumulate temporary worldly wealth?

 PRAY:

Father thank you for your gift of eternal life. Thank you for making it so clear what we must do to receive it. We pray that you may help us to accept it with child-like faith, trusting in your son who died to make it possible.

Thank you for this incredible gift, help us to share it with the rest of our friends, family by telling them about this hope that we have.

Redemption: The act of still being saved

TODAY’S AUTHOR: MNL

THEME: Redemption: The act of still being saved

VERSE: “In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace that he lavished on us. With all wisdom and understanding, he made known to us the mystery of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ, to be put into effect when the times reach their fulfillment—to bring unity to all things in heaven and on earth under Christ.”

Ephesians 1:7-10 NIV

FROM THE VERSE: Redemption is defined as the act of being saved. I love the word act in this definition. It reminds us that we have already been redeemed, but it is also a continual process in the fact that it is a daily process. The nature of redemption is the forgiveness of our sins. The act of being forgiven is also a once and done thing, but yet a daily process of us confessing our sins to the Lord as well. The act of saving us through forgiveness can only be possible through the blood of Christ as the atoning sacrifice. Now that we touched on the how, what about the why part. Why would the Father redeem us? We find the answer to this at the end of verse ten.

“…to bring to unity all things in heaven and on earth under Christ.”

God sent his Son to die on the cross, to redeem us through His blood, so that we might have unity with the Father once again. I challenge you to just sit and dwell on the concept of uniting all things in Christ, things in both heaven and earth. My mind cannot even begin to fully comprehend what that even looks in all of its fullness, but my heart gets excited over it! I hope yours does too!

Father, thank you for redeeming us. Thank you that we are still being saved and that we need you of every hour of every day. Father, I pray that our hearts would long for the things of your heart. That we would wait and anticipate and strive for the unity of all things in Christ. Thank you Father for being a daddy that wants to be unified with His children. May we draw closer to you today. Amen!

When You Are Tempted Not To Pray

TODAY’S AUTHOR: SN

THEME: WHEN YOU ARE TEMPTED NOT TO PRAY

KEY VERSE: “PRAY WITHOUT CEASING”

1 THESSALONIANS 5:17.

MESSAGE: We are told in 1 Thessalonians 5:17, to “pray without ceasing.” For many of us this verse brings a bit of trepidation as we contemplate exactly what is required of us to pray and to “do it right.” We look at our busy schedules and think we don’t have time to do that much praying. We rehearse our failures and decide God probably wouldn’t have much to say to us, or have much interest in listening to what we want to say to Him. Don’t be disappointmented continue praying.

We let the seemingly well-done prayers of others push our spiritual confidence into a corner. There, the little desire we did have to pray sits, shrivels and grows smaller with each passing day as we hesitate to say something, anything, to the God who does not grade us on our rhetoric. Neither our schedules nor our pasts should prevent us from talking to God about whatever concerns us. A previous disappointment or our current level of spiritual maturity shouldn’t get in the way of our willingness to speak freely and honestly about how we need Him or what we’re thankful for.

Prayer is simply open and honest communication with God. It involves our thanksgiving, repentance, requests and willingness to surrender to what He reveals to us in His Word and in our hearts.

It can be tempting to skip, forget about or even talk ourselves out of praying, but prayer is a key part of how we fully engage in our relationship with God Almighty.

It’s important to take the conversations with God as a normal, ongoing part of everyday life , Scripture encourages us to pray and keep an open line of communication with God, talking to Him at anytime about anything.

PRAYER:

Dear God, Thank You for the ongoing opportunity I have to talk with You. Forgive me for times when I have not made my conversations with You a priority. Please help me remember I can always communicate with You openly and honestly, as You already know what I think, how I feel and what I’ve done — and You love me anyway. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Strongholds

AUTHOR: JS

THEME: Strongholds

KEY VERSE: “For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds.”

2 Corinthians 10:4

MESSAGE: The Bible says when you are Born Again and filled with the Holy Spirit, old things are passed away, all things become new (see 2 Cor. 5:17). The Lord has put a new Spirit in us. Previously, I could not understand why so many of us who proclaimed Christ had such little impact on the kingdom of darkness. It seemed to me that our culture should be impacted much more if His children walked in the light as Jesus did. Jesus impacted His culture like no other man. I see many believers, who proclaimed Christ, living no differently than a person who had not claimed Him as Lord. Many of has a form of religion, but little power that reflects Christ’s rule in our lives. I believe that there are many generational influences that impact the way we view people and circumstances in our subconscious. I believe that this is stronghold that had been implanted many generations earlier. Because the stronghold operates on a subconscious level, it is not easily recognizable. Strongholds keep us from being free to reflect Christ in and through our lives until they are dealt with, we subconsciously are committed to them. Strongholds can often be so hidden that we would not even identify them as evil. A stronghold of fear, control, rebellion, insecurity, idolatry, pride, or bitterness may be hidden until it is reviewed through circumstances.

All strongholds are built in our lives as a result of seeking to meet our basic needs God has created in us. Once we believe a lie that God cannot meet a need without our effort, we open our spirit to a stronghold. The more lies we believe, the more we invite these strongholds to take root in our lives.

Are you ineffective in your Christian life? Are there besetting sins that seem to be in your life? You may find that satan has built a fortress in your heart that has been there many generations. You must ask God’s forgiveness for entertaining this stronghold, and you must renounce it. Then allow Christ to renew your mind and heart. Pray according to the Holy Spirit’s guide.

Being A Follower

TODAY’S AUTHOR: SM

THEME: BEING A FOLLOWER

KEY VERSES

Take Time To Read All The Today’s Key Verses…..

Mark 1:16-20

When Jesus called his disciples to follow him, they went without even thinking.

From there on they walked with Jesus and watched him in everything he did.

Luke 12:35-40

Jesus told them to stay awake and ready, but at the end the disciples failed.

Mark 14:32-42

Yet they are the apostles, our forefathers as believers and the closest people to Jesus.

What can we learn from the Apostles? Stay close to Jesus! He is God and human, He is the perfect example for us, someone we should always try to imitate though we can never complete this. If we could be as close to Jesus as his first disciples, we would still fail like they did. It’s our nature, because we are sinners! But at the end, God can and will use us if we offer our lives as living sacrifices to Him. Look at the Old Testament, what kind of people were chosen by God. All of them had their mistakes, but God used them for good! Always remember, you can never be good enough to stand as righteous before God. Never forget, there’s no sin that can separate you from the love of our Lord. There is nothing that can hinder him from using you for his glory. God qualifies the called ones or those who are willing to follow Him! Just be willing to be His follower and Him will qualify you for His work and purpose and to His glory

Luke 9:23 Then he said to them all: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me. Do you want to be or continue being a Disciple of Jesus? if your answer is yes, are you willing to deny yourself daily? take up your cross daily? And following Jesus daily? Pray in line with all the today’s key verses and pray for grace and strength to continue living as a Disciple of Jesus Christ. I believe through Him we can be His obedience based Disciples who make other Disciples who make others Disciples here, there and everywhere to His glory

Thanking the Lord in Times of Trial

TODAY’S AUTHOR: MNL

THEME: Thanking the Lord in Times of Trial

VERSE:

“Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks is all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 ESV

“Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of you faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.” James 1:2-4 ESV

FROM THE VERSE: I can almost hear it now. Thirteen voices, each with their own unique story, shouting at the top of their lungs… REJOICE….ALWAYS….PRAY….WITHOUT CEASEING… GIVE THANKS….IN ALL CIRCUMSTANCES……..! I may have chanted that verse a hundred times that summer, but when it comes to the core of it, do I really believe it? Sure, it is easy to say that I choose joy when life is going great! However, when we reach those trials, if I’m honest, that is not the first think I feel like chanting in the morning. Or what about your prayer life? When a trial comes, does your prayer life increase or decrease?

I am captivated by James’ words “count it all joy…when you meet trials of various kinds.” Easier said then done. Some of you may even question the author on how he can say that. What kind of life did he live that it was so easy to count it all joy? But you see, when we take a good look at the author, those words came from a man who was broken just like you and me. He knew pain. He knew what it felt like to be alone. He knew the desert. So why count it all joy? Because he understood the meaning of the trial. His perspective changed from focusing on his situation, to focusing on God. Trials are meant to bring us closer to God. They take our faith deeper, allowing us to depend even more on God and less of ourselves. I don’t know about you, but I want to go deeper with the Father. I want to gain that steadfastness that makes me complete. So today, I am packing up my running shoes and letting my eyes fix on Jesus, and not on my trial. I want to choose joy! And don’t forget to thank the Lord for your trial, because in reality He is asking you to come into deeper intimacy with Him. He is asking us to go a bit further up and further in.

Pray in line with the Spirit, asking the Father for perspective on your trial. Trust Him that He knows what is best, and then follow hard after Him.

Receiving and Giving

TODAY’S AUTHOR: SN

THEME: RECEIVING AND GIVING

KEY VERSE: “Freely you have received; freely give.”

Matthew 10:8b (NIV).

MESSAGE: God’s Kingdom is built on the principle of giving and receiving … receiving and giving. At times we need to do both. Asking for help is often hard, whatever the reason. And at times, we struggle to ask for help. But we know that would deny others the blessing of giving. For some, giving is a spiritual gift, as Romans 12:8 shows us. Our key verse in Matthew 10:8b teaches us that our hands should be open when it comes to giving and receiving help. Jesus was giving specific instructions to His disciples in that passage. The full verse eight says: “Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, drive out demons. Freely you have received; freely give.” God wired our hearts to give and receive. He gave the Ultimate Gift. He gave sacrificially. He gave from His heart, just as He wants us to give sacrificially and have the grace and humility to receive. How many times have I rejected God’s offer of help to me, thinking I could do life on my own? It is/was pride. I pray God continues to show you and me how to give sacrificially and receive with grace and humility. WE SHOULD LOVE TO GIVE. WE SHOULD LOVE SERVING PEOPLE AND OFFERING GOD’S WORD TO A HUNGRY WORLD.

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, thank You for the gift of life today. You are my Jehovah Jirah. Forgive me for my pride in struggling to receive. Help me to continue to lavishly give to You, serve others and receive Your blessings. I pray for Your continued favor on my friends and families reading this devotional today. Thank You for providing more than enough, Lord. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.