Devotable Daily Devotions


Devotable is a daily devotion project seeking to encourage believers, reach the lost, and spread the gospel as far as we can. Come join us as we connect with God daily!

All Episodes

Daily Devotion - Galatians 5:22-26 - The Fruit of the Spirit⁠⁠The other day, I was listening to a podcast where the speaker prayed that we would see supernatural acts. She asked God to make us more in tune with the supernatural and empower us with His Spirit. While she was praying, my mind immediately went to signs and wonders. I imagined people being healed and miracles happening left and right.⁠⁠Then I asked myself why I limited "the supernatural" to miracles.⁠⁠aWhile signs and wonders are amazing and I pray God continues to move this way in the world, I think we might have only a partial view of the supernatural. In fact, I think the miraculous is closer than we might think.⁠⁠Read Galatians 5:22-26⁠⁠I would say that each of these characteristics is supernatural. It's impossible to bear the fruit of the Spirit in our own strength—it's a miraculous act of the Lord. Without Him, there's no way that we can love the unloveable and have joy during turmoil. True peace, patience, and kindness are impossible in our own strength. Our goodness and faithfulness fall way short without His presence. Have you ever tried to be gentle or self-controlled in your own strength? In my experience, it's not pretty.⁠⁠Though I don't want to admit it, I think social media has warped our brains a little bit, tricking us into believing the lie that if we can't post about it, then it's not good. After all, if an event isn't on social media, did it even happen? This means good (and supernatural) deeds like being patient with a coworker or loving our neighbor don't seem as meaningful as a mysterious sign or wonder. Because we can't post it on social media, we might underestimate the impact good fruit has on the world around us.⁠⁠The fruit of the Spirit in our lives is just as important and life-changing for those around us as a miraculous moment of healing. I believe our intentional, daily choices to submit and surrender are supernatural acts that please God and touch the hearts of others.⁠⁠When we are in Christ, we are walking miracles—I think that's pretty incredible!Read the full devotion at

Apr 7

20 min 2 sec

Daily Devotion - Luke 10:17-20 - The Perfect Spiritual Guide⁠⁠Like the consummate spiritual guide, Jesus led His disciples and the people of Israel with righteousness and holiness. He masterfully led them with perfect gentleness and limited but powerful words.⁠⁠Read Luke 10:17-20⁠⁠Imagine living as an apostle of Jesus in His time. You’ve been given this unimaginable power, only by the grace of God, to defeat the evil that existed around them.⁠⁠There are many things that may raise our level of excitement to a height that we rarely experience. None as great as the gift given to these followers of Christ. Like the innocence of children they find themselves in a euphoric state of excitement as they rejoice about this new gift.⁠⁠We find Jesus quietly standing among them gazing upon their exhilaration. Just so He could listen to all they say until the perfect moment occurs. In His infinite wisdom and perfection He makes a slight course correction in their jubilation.⁠⁠Jesus refreshes their memory of the great power they possess and adds one small and important adjustment. A simple and beautiful truth He shares with them to keep their focus on what truly matters so as not to be consumed by what they’ve been given.⁠⁠Like a good Spiritual Guide, He uses a few simple words with a powerful heavenly truth.⁠⁠“Nevertheless, do not rejoice because the spirits are subject to you, but rejoice because your names are written in heaven.” (Luke 10:20)⁠⁠While He quietly shared in their excitement He remained steadfastly on the watch to help keep their eyes on what mattered most. His apostles put their lives in His hands and He in return, kept their course steady and pointed toward their ultimate destination.⁠⁠He is the consummate Father and the perfect spiritual guide. Through His perfect love He continually guided, nudged, and prodded His children toward the way, the truth and the life. He constantly protected them from themselves and from falling into the trap of the evil one.⁠Read the full devotion at Read the full devotion at

Apr 5

22 min 23 sec

This is a sample devotion from our newest book. Learn more at⁠Daily Devotion - Matthew 18:19-20 - Practicing for Heaven"Again, truly I tell you, if two of you on earth agree about any matter that you pray for, it will be done for you by my Father in heaven. For where two or three are gathered together in my name, I am there among them." Matthew 18:19-20 CSBWe moved to Japan when I was four years old. My father, a U.S. Marine, had previously served in the Middle East and Viet Nam. This was our first overseas adventure as a family.“Our neighbors will be Japanese,” Mom said. “God makes us different.” She said we were privileged to live among beautifully distinct new neighbors.Mom embraced Japan. She dragged the family all over in trains and buses. We camped on Mt. Fuji. We dug for clams in the bay alongside our Japanese neighbors.Dad’s next orders brought us to San Diego. Mrs. Clark was my new fifth grade teacher. In her class, I learned about slavery. She read an abridged version of Roots by African-American author Alex Haley. He recounts his family history from Gambia, Africa to America. The story horrified me. The abduction, transport, and enslavement of free-born Kunta Kinte, Haley’s ancestor, was shackled to the hull of a slave ship stuffed with other men, women, and children. Many died and were tossed overboard; unprofitable, disposable. At 10, I was devastated to learn this was how the world worked. “There is no way this is how God wants things to be,” I remember telling my mother.“Men can be very cruel,” my mother said. “You must make every effort to love others even if it seems you’re the only one doing it. This is difficult, but it matters.”In the verse above, we get a glance at heaven’s diverse human population. The word “nations” is translated into English from the Greek word ethnos like our word “ethnic.” Every human ethnic group is represented.THE MISSION OF THE CHURCHThe mission of the Church is to build a new culture that reflects God’s love and goodness. This is our task as people reconciled to God. This is why Jesus taught His disciples to pray: “Your Kingdom come, Your will be done, on earth as it is in Heaven” (Matthew 6:10). Jesus expects the Kingdom of God to invade our world through those who pray His words.Jesus gives His vision for human relationships in Matthew 18:18. “Whatever you loose on earth will have been loosed in heaven." Theologian Ben Witherington writes, “Jesus believes that decisions taken on earth have eternal consequences. Heaven is not seen as the place where all things have been predetermined, rather there is an interactive relationship between events on earth and things in heaven.”In Matthew 18, Jesus teaches about justice and equality, the outcome of human relationships made right. The results echo into eternity.Here’s the challenge: practice makes perfect. Do what Jesus teaches in Matthew 18. Get good at these and we’ll be better prepared, now and in the future, for living in God's everlasting Kingdom.PRAYERLord, please open my eyes to how I can make relationships in my life look like the relationship You want to have with me. May I live the kind of life where it is easy for Your Kingdom to invade the everyday world around me.Read the full devotion at

Mar 31

20 min 21 sec

Daily Devotion - Luke 10:17-20 - The Perfect Spiritual Guide⁠⁠Like the consummate spiritual guide, Jesus led His disciples and the people of Israel with righteousness and holiness. He masterfully led them with perfect gentleness and limited but powerful words.⁠⁠Read Luke 10:17-20⁠⁠Imagine living as an apostle of Jesus in His time. You’ve been given this unimaginable power, only by the grace of God, to defeat the evil that existed around them.⁠⁠There are many things that may raise our level of excitement to a height that we rarely experience. None as great as the gift given to these followers of Christ. Like the innocence of children they find themselves in a euphoric state of excitement as they rejoice about this new gift.⁠⁠We find Jesus quietly standing among them gazing upon their exhilaration. Just so He could listen to all they say until the perfect moment occurs. In His infinite wisdom and perfection He makes a slight course correction in their jubilation.⁠⁠Jesus refreshes their memory of the great power they possess and adds one small and important adjustment. A simple and beautiful truth He shares with them to keep their focus on what truly matters so as not to be consumed by what they’ve been given.⁠⁠Like a good Spiritual Guide, He uses a few simple words with a powerful heavenly truth.⁠⁠“Nevertheless, do not rejoice because the spirits are subject to you, but rejoice because your names are written in heaven.” (Luke 10:20)⁠⁠While He quietly shared in their excitement He remained steadfastly on the watch to help keep their eyes on what mattered most. His apostles put their lives in His hands and He in return, kept their course steady and pointed toward their ultimate destination.⁠⁠He is the consummate Father and the perfect spiritual guide. Through His perfect love He continually guided, nudged, and prodded His children toward the way, the truth and the life. He constantly protected them from themselves and from falling into the trap of the evil one.⁠Read the full devotion at

Mar 29

22 min 28 sec

This is a sample devotion from our newest book. Learn more at⁠Daily Devotion - Galatians 4:4-5 - Becoming One of the Family"When the time came to completion, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons." Galatians 4:4-5 CSBEveryone has a desire to fit in, be recognized, or have access to particular resources. C.S. Lewis writes in his book, The Weight of Glory, a fascinating essay on the dangers of trying to make it into the inner circle of groups or organizations, but we still find ourselves striving to be “on the inside”. Truth be told, there are few groups truly open to all people and give access to all resources for the entire group. One place you do have access to everything is in the family of God.   GOD'S PLANIf we look at this passage of Scripture carefully what we notice is that God’s family is orchestrated by God according to His plan. The phrase “When the time came to completion” indicates that God had a plan for sending His son, Jesus Christ, into the world to redeem humanity. You could understand Genesis 3- Revelation 22 as God’s plan for reconciling a broken relationship with humanity. The adoption we see taking place in the above passage is a reminder that God’s plans are not always ours and nothing we do can ever thwart His plans and purposes.   We are also told that Jesus lived a life like ours. He was born the same as we were--through a woman. He experienced life in much the same way we do. However, Jesus is not like us. He obeyed the law perfectly and by obeying the law and living perfectly, dying, and rising from the dead, He provides redemption to all humanity.   ADOPTED INTO GOD'S FAMILYWhat is the purpose for all this? Paul answers, “So that we might receive adoption as sons.” Through the redemption that is offered and found in Christ, all people have the opportunity to be adopted into God’s family. When someone repents of their sin and places their faith and trust in Christ, they are adopted into the family just as if they were a son or daughter.   We had the privilege of adopting our first child recently. Through all the joy of having a brand-new baby in the family, the greatest day came on the day of our adoption finalization. In front of some of our friends and family, a judge declared that little girl a member of our family. The judge stated she had all the rights and privileges that any child biologically born to us would have. No matter what she does, for the rest of her life, she will be our daughter; nothing can change that. Friend, when you become a member of God’s family you are adopted into His family and nothing can change that. Sure, we will sin and fall short of God’s expectations, but He never says, “That’s it! You are out of the family!”   Adoption into the family of God should cause all Christians to understand the implications for the way that we should treat others. When I recognize that those who claim the name of Christ are adopted into our family, I should guard the way I treat them. This means that when someone puts down my brother or sister in Christ because of their ethnicity, race, or gender, I should be quick to jump in and help them. The body of Christ should look after its fellow family members and not seek to harm them because we understand they are a part of God’s family, and He has graciously adopted both of us into His family.PRAYERGod, please help me to see people the way You see them. Help me to recognize the privilege of what it means to be adopted into Your family, and help me to not take the adoption I never deserved for granted.Read the full devotion at

Mar 17

21 min 44 sec

DAILY DEVOTION - PSALM 1:1-3 - MEDITATING ON SCRIPTURE⁠⁠Read Psalm 1:1-3 HCSB⁠⁠This first psalm highlights the blessing that comes with godly wisdom. It recognizes that our thought life is important, as it influences all that we say and do. Quite simply what we think, becomes how we feel and then our actions flow from our feelings. We live in a world that generally, does not follow the ways of God. It is so easy to absorb worldly attitudes and ways of thinking which can be contrary to God’s word. The writer here declares the wisdom of making the right choice in what we are listening to and meditating on.⁠⁠In verse one we see a progression, that if we follow worldly advice, we can find ourselves taking the wrong path. It may be following popular opinion but when we do, we can find ourselves in the company of those who not only do not believe in God, but who actively oppose the truth of God’s word. What may seem right to them, is not right or acceptable in God’s sight.⁠⁠Instead there is a far better way for us, the way of blessing. True spiritual blessing is an inner happiness, a sense of assurance and well-being that comes from knowing the faithful love and care of a gracious God. Knowing, what we know. This is where we see the benefits of meditating on God’s word.⁠⁠Meditating on scripture is not some mystical practice. It is quite simply pausing to reflect on God’s word, to take the time to focus on its meaning and to absorb it into our minds. Meditating is not the same as memorizing scripture. We may take a verse or part of a verse to reflect on, but in the main it is dwelling on the thought and the concept of the verse rather than reciting the verse.⁠⁠Meditating is aligning our thoughts with God’s word, by immersing our thoughts in God’s Word.⁠⁠What we meditate on today may not always bring immediate insight or blessing, but it is deepening our faith and developing our relationship with God. Meditating on God’s word develops a grateful and thankful heart and changes our perspective and outlook on life. ⁠⁠“Help me understand the meaning of Your precepts so that I can meditate on Your wonders.” Psalm 119:27 HCSBRead the full devotion at

Mar 15

18 min 54 sec

Daily Devotion - Galatians 4:4-5 - Becoming One of the Family⁠⁠Read Galatians 4:4-5⁠⁠Everyone has a desire to fit in, be recognized, or have access to particular resources. C.S. Lewis writes in his book, The Weight of Glory, a fascinating essay on the dangers of trying to make it into the inner circle of groups or organizations, but we still find ourselves striving to be “on the inside”. Truth be told, there are few groups truly open to all people and give access to all resources for the entire group. One place you do have access to everything is in the family of God.   ⁠⁠If we look at this passage of Scripture carefully what we notice is that God’s family is orchestrated by God according to His plan. The phrase “When the time came to completion” indicates that God had a plan for sending His son, Jesus Christ, into the world to redeem humanity. You could understand Genesis 3- Revelation 22 as God’s plan for reconciling a broken relationship with humanity. The adoption we see taking place in the above passage is a reminder that God’s plans are not always ours and nothing we do can ever thwart His plans and purposes.   ⁠⁠What is the purpose for all this? Paul answers, “So that we might receive adoption as sons.” Through the redemption that is offered and found in Christ, all people have the opportunity to be adopted into God’s family. When someone repents of their sin and places their faith and trust in Christ, they are adopted into the family just as if they were a son or daughter.   ⁠⁠We had the privilege of adopting our first child recently. Through all the joy of having a brand-new baby in the family, the greatest day came on the day of our adoption finalization. In front of some of our friends and family, a judge declared that little girl a member of our family. The judge stated she had all the rights and privileges that any child biologically born to us would have.⁠⁠Adoption into the family of God should cause all Christians to understand the implications for the way that we should treat others. When I recognize that those who claim the name of Christ are adopted into our family, I should guard the way I treat them.Read the full devotion at

Mar 10

19 min 20 sec

Daily Devotion - Jeremiah 24:5-6 - God Turning Bad Into Good⁠⁠I know a couple who share freely about a devastating time in their marriage. But the focus of their story isn’t the hurt or the wounds they endured and/or inflicted. Instead, they talk about how God used that bad experience to reveal deep-seated issues which, once addressed, turned their marriage around for good. As a result, they emerged from that painful pruning closer to each other and to Him. Now, they speak about that difficult period with gratitude for all the good that has come from it.⁠⁠GOD PROMISES HOPE⁠⁠⁠Speaking of God turning good into bad, He once asked, “What do you see, Jeremiah?” The prophet replied, “Figs, some very good and some very bad, too rotten to eat” (Jeremiah 24:3). The people of Judah who remained after Babylon’s first Judean raid were the bad figs. Rather than choosing to heed God’s warnings, they turned to Egypt for help. But all of pharaoh’s horses and men couldn’t save Judah from utter destruction. Instead, Egypt too was judged. When all was said and done, Egypt would never again be a major world power.⁠⁠What about the exiles? At first, they “sat and wept” by the rivers of Babylon (Psalm 137:1). But then a new perspective emerged. Jeremiah proclaimed that they were the good figs, who God “sent out of [Judah] for their own good” (Jeremiah 24:5 NKJV). God promised them a future and hope—including the restoration of their homeland.⁠⁠GOD CAN TURN WHAT SEEMS BAD INTO GOOD⁠⁠⁠Sometimes life’s challenges are actually good blessings in disguise. As we go through hard seasons, God can use them to mold and grow us, turning those "bad" things into good.⁠⁠He told the Israelite exiles that He would “build them up and not tear them down” (Jeremiah 24:6). It wasn’t a time to weep, but one to rejoice. God took something bad meant for evil and turned it around for good.⁠⁠He does the same for you and me today!⁠⁠Read Jeremiah 24:5-6 NKJVRead the full devotion at

Mar 8

18 min 22 sec

This is a sample devotion from our newest book. Learn more at⁠⁠Daily Devotion - When Double Standards Challenge Our Faith⁠⁠Read Proverbs 20:10 CSB⁠⁠Many years ago, I experienced betrayal at the hands of my best friend. It broke my heart and left me wondering if I would ever trust anyone again. I wondered if the bitterness eating away at me would ever give way to forgiveness.⁠⁠Our Scripture today talks about “differing weights and varying measures.” In the days when these words were written, people used stones (weights) and ephahs (measures) to determine cost when buying or selling goods. Often, to increase profit, people found ways to manipulate the system and deceive each other.⁠⁠So, what does this Scripture have to do with God’s command for us to live justly? He tells us this practice of double standards is detestable to Him. Other Bible translations use the word “abomination.” I don’t know about you, but that word grabs my attention and convicts me!⁠⁠Throughout the Bible, we see God does not have double standards. His command for us to first love Him and then love others is universal. His love isn’t dependent upon our race, age, gender, social, or financial class.⁠⁠This concept of differing weights and measures applies to every aspect of life. Sometimes we carry within us hidden iniquities in judgment, expectation, and behavior. Our subtle habits of gaining a little extra for ourselves become so ingrained, we overlook them. How we view the world and others filters through a lens of life circumstances and the world around us, rather than through the Word of God.⁠⁠But God does not waver in His opinion of double standards. There is no room for them in His Kingdom.⁠⁠It took me a long time to work through my heartbreak at the hands of my best friend. I had to ask myself some tough questions. Do I expect an apology before I am willing to consider laying down my own bitterness at the feet of Jesus?⁠⁠I came to realize there would be no justice if my actions were fueled by bitterness and unforgiveness. She never apologized for what she did. But with God’s help, I forgave her.Read the full devotion at

Mar 3

16 min 38 sec

Daily Devotion - Apart From Me You Can Do Nothing⁠⁠Read John 15:4-8 NLT⁠⁠Can I be honest for a moment? One of my least favorite gifts to receive is flowers.⁠⁠I appreciate the kindness behind the gift, and I smile and truthfully admire the flowers' colors and vibrancy. When they are fresh and flourishing, they are beautiful, and if they could just stay that way it would all be fine, but what I dread is knowing that I am going to watch them slowly wither and die.⁠⁠There's nothing I can do about it. I look after them as well as I can. I trim the stems, I add the flower food, and I make sure the water is topped up, but I know that all it will do is prolong their life by a few days. In the end it is futile, because they have been cut off from their source of life.⁠⁠Jesus paints a similar picture in John 15, when He talks about Himself as the grapevine and His followers as the branches. If we remain in Him, we will flourish and bear much fruit, but apart from Him we can do nothing.⁠⁠As I read about the branches that are detached from the vine being thrown away and deemed useless, I picture those dying flowers. I want to make sure that I'm not one of them, and I want to do all that I can to help others avoid the same fate.⁠⁠If there's one thing sadder than a withering bunch of flowers, it's a withering Christian.⁠⁠So, how can we make sure that we flourish as followers of Jesus? In one sense, it's simple: remain in Him.⁠⁠How that works out practically will be different for each of us - there's not a one-size-fits-all formula - but the starting point is recognizing our dependence on Him. That is what is going to help us to flourish.⁠⁠If we recognize that, we will naturally do the things that keep us close to Him. We will read His Word because we know we need to hear His voice. We will pray because we know we need His help and guidance. We will join with other believers because we know that we can strengthen and encourage one another to flourish in our walk of faith. In order to flourish, we must remain deeply rooted.⁠⁠May we truly flourish!Read the full devotion at

Mar 1

18 min 2 sec

Daily Devotion - John 13:34 - Everybody, Always⁠⁠“I give you a new command: Love one another. Just as I have loved you, you are also to love one another." John 13:34 CSB⁠⁠“I love you!” my youngest daughter said earnestly, attempting to make up with her sister after a recent squabble. “I love you, too,” my oldest replied somewhat reluctantly, “except when you do that!”⁠⁠Can you relate?⁠⁠As believers in Christ, we are called to love everyone—no exceptions. But in reality, it’s not always that straightforward. As the saying goes, “No one ever said love was easy. And if they did, they lied.” (Jenn Sterling)⁠⁠LOVING OTHERS ISN'T EASY⁠⁠Human beings are inherently sinful and fundamentally flawed with the capacity to frustrate, anger, baffle, and deeply wound one another. We are a wonderfully rich and diverse species, yet those differences can be a source of much confusion, conflict, and division between us. From the way we look, speak, and live out our beliefs and values, to our cultural experiences, educational backgrounds, and even our zip codes, each person brings their own unique contribution to the table—and some of it may be more palatable to us than others.⁠⁠No, loving others is never easy, but Jesus calls us to do it anyway.⁠⁠Why? Because He does.⁠⁠JESUS DIDN'T DISCRIMINATE⁠⁠Male and female, rich and poor, healthy and sick, honorable and dishonorable; Jesus did not discriminate. Instead, He demonstrated a radical, passionate, counter-cultural love to each and every person He encountered—without strings, without judgment, and without exception. A redeeming love that pointed people toward the Father and offered hope and freedom to a world that was weary, broken, and lost. A self-sacrificial love that took Him all the way to the cross. A love that is still very much evident today.⁠⁠And we, as undeserving recipients of this abundant, life-changing love, have a responsibility to extend it to those around us, so that, as Jesus said, “By this everyone will know that you are my disciples…” (John 13:35).⁠⁠Read the full devotion at

Feb 24

21 min 12 sec

Daily Devotion - Colossians 2:6-7 - The Foundation of FaithEach one of us experiences tests and trials throughout life. How we face them depends on our foundation of faith. This foundation of faith isn’t dependent on how much of the Word we can quote, how often we attend church, or even how much we give; it rests in knowing God loves us.The foundation of love is what keeps us from getting carried away with other doctrines and beliefs. Paul warns the church at Colossae they will be carried off by ideas that ‘seem good’ if they are not firmly rooted in Him. We are in Christ, not because of anything we have done, but by the work of the cross. To grow and be firmly and deeply planted we have to seek truth by reading the Word and spending time with the Father in prayer.As we do this, we build ourselves up. Learning His nature through the Word and experiencing it first-hand in prayer develops a deeper relationship with Him. It’s from this relationship, not knowledge, that we experience true love, joy, and peace. We become securely rooted in the truth of who we are in Christ and His love for us.Tests and trials will still come, but our reaction changes. We can still hope and expect for great things because we know He has a plan and purpose for us, and our joy overflows at what God is working in us and through us. The roots we put down, or the foundation of faith and love of Christ, provide nourishment for our souls, but these roots also provide stability and strength for the storms.Even in our weakness, we have an advocate who already won and defends us from the accuser. This is joy! We don’t have to just endure the tests and trials; we can be joyful because in Him there is always hope.It can be difficult to feel victorious when we experience hard times, but rooting ourselves in the love of the Father and the sacrifice of Jesus will cause our hearts to overflow with joy. Out of joy comes our thanksgiving to Him who gave all so we would live victorious.As we carry on in this year, let us pray and seek the Lord for ways we can be thankful for this past season, and thank Him for the new things that await us.Read the full devotion at

Feb 22

20 min 31 sec

This is a sample devotion from our newest book. Learn more at Devotion - Acts 10:34-35 - No PartialityThen Peter began to speak: 'Now I truly understand that God doesn’t show favoritism, but in every nation the person who fears Him and does what is right is acceptable to him.' (Acts 10:34-35 CSB)After recent events in the United States, I needed to read this Scripture and allow it to settle within my spirit as a reminder of how God feels about His people. As an African American woman working in a professional world where, in almost all settings, I am considered a “minority,” I felt Peter’s words sharpen me as iron encouraging me to persevere in the most racially, politically, and economically charged environment I have ever experienced. I would have never imagined the start of a new decade would fuel a sense of reverse thinking. I imagined this year being more about vision and forward progression, but unfortunately, I see veiled blindness and systemic oppression. Many times I find myself asking the question, “How did we get here?”DISPLAY EQUALITY BY OUR ACTIONSIn this verse, Peter reveals that with God there is no partiality, which tells us there were those who did not believe this. If this was occurring so many years ago with a different group of individuals, I wondered if it is our time as the Church to remind others there is no prejudice in God. “How can we do this, Lord?” I prayed. In my mind I saw the words, “Through our actions.” If there is no partiality, favoritism, bias, or prejudice with our Heavenly Father who created us, then where did we get the notion this should ever exist in the first place? The enemy, also known as the great deceiver. This is so apropos during this season where the love of many has waxed cold, lawlessness abounds, and hearts are hardened.Then I remembered who we as the body of Christ belong to and how He feels about us. As we are still battling the decisions of those who came before, let us not forget how our Creator feels about us. He even came to ensure we are all set free. He did not save His salvation for one race, creed, or political party. He came for all, but we must love and believe. As we continue to grow deeper and stronger in God, let us put the Word to work and literally be the hands and feet of Jesus. Let us rise to the standard of equality, and let it start with the actions of you and me.PRAYERHeavenly Father, protect us. Be our Guide through this wilderness and valley. Heal our land and help us to persevere; to not grow weary in well-doing, and seek You first. Let us be mindful of our actions, our thoughts, and our walk. Give us the courage to be bold, but provide us with the sensitivity to recognize where we fall short. We are so grateful there is no bias with You and let us use You as an example for the way we should live our fleeting lives each day. In Jesus' name, Amen.Read the full devotion at

Feb 17

19 min 23 sec

Daily Devotion - Colossians 3:2 - Persevere in the Unknown⁠⁠Do you think we can thrive in the face of uncertainty? What would it take to make that a possibility? How do we persevere in the unknown. After all, most of us are starting this year out with a lot of uncertainty.⁠⁠WHAT DOES IT TAKE TO PERSEVERE IN THE UNKNOWN?⁠⁠It takes focus! However, our focus must be on the right component. It can't be on us and our abilities. Nor can we only stare at our circumstances. Haven't you ever noticed the more we concentrate on our troubles, it increases our despair? Our fear and our worry will skyrocket.⁠⁠Our concentration needs to be on something more significant. It isn't always easy. After all, we are human, and our thoughts sometimes feel uncontrollable. Yet, we all can choose to push the thoughts aside and focus on what will give us peace, joy, and the strength to persevere.⁠⁠WE MUST TURN OUR FOCUS TO GOD⁠⁠"Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth." Colossians 3:2⁠⁠BE PRESENT WITH THE LORD⁠⁠Sit at His feet daily. Push away all of the distractions and solely be with Him. Let this relationship be your most important, especially when you can't see the next step to take.⁠⁠Listen carefully for what He might be asking; Jesus loves to ask questions to help us find our way. But don't be afraid to inquire of Him. After all, questions help us to deepen relationships; why would it be any different with God?⁠⁠"Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you." James 4:8 ESV⁠⁠REMEMBER WHAT HE HAS DONE⁠⁠Recollect what God has done in the past. Think about the times God answered your prayers or those of someone else. You can even start with the stories in the Bible.⁠⁠LET GO OF THE DISTRACTIONS⁠⁠Jesus never let the distractions nor the busyness of life get in the way of spending time with His Father. Often in the Bible, we hear about Jesus removing himself to a quiet place to commune with God.⁠⁠Will you do the same? Consider what keeps you from focusing on God. Is it possible to eliminate some of those distractions?⁠⁠"But Jesus Himself would often slip away to the wilderness and pray." Luke 5:16Read the full devotion at

Feb 15

21 min 15 sec

Daily Devotion - John 13:34 - Extravagant Love⁠⁠My energy level was low and my mind fuzzy by the unfamiliar path I was on. Friends had supplied meals not only during the week of my husband’s funeral, but for days following. Finally, a trip to the supermarket was inevitable. You’d think that would be a simple task, but it wasn’t. ⁠⁠I walked through the door unprepared for the sea of red, white, and pink. Balloons, bears, and greeting cards were displayed. Valentine’s Day signs shouted. As it turned out, the walk from the parking lot wasn’t the hardest, it was facing the romance advertised.⁠⁠I found a shopping cart and shopped as fast as I could, remembering I would never buy a “For my husband” card again. I was sure if I didn’t move fast, my flood of tears at the checkout would alarm the cashier.⁠⁠WHAT DOES EXTRAVAGANT LOVE LOOK LIKE⁠⁠Valentine’s Day wasn’t always the scene that it is now. ⁠⁠Although the commercial trappings of the holiday may be extravagant and the focus, celebrating love is not a new idea. Jesus instructed us to “…Love one another…” (John 13:34) It’s an imperative that is the canopy for the fifty-nine “one anothers” in the New Testament.⁠⁠What does that look like? A sampling shows us we love by…⁠⁠being “at peace with each other.” (Mark 9:50)⁠being “devoted to one another in brotherly love…” (Romans 12:10)⁠living “in harmony with one another…” (Romans 12:16)⁠“honoring one another above yourselves.” (Romans 12:10)⁠“serving one another in love.” (Galatians 5:13)⁠“encouraging each other…” (I Thessalonians 5:11)⁠“carrying each other’s burdens…” (Galatians 6:2)⁠“praying for each other.” (James 5:16)⁠⁠It may be Valentine’s Day on February 14 but loving one another in distinct and practical ways doesn’t know a calendar.⁠⁠Which “one another” especially speaks to you? Perhaps living out one of these today will be the valentine you give as you follow Peter’s instruction to, “…Love one another deeply, from the heart.” (I Peter 1:22 NIV)⁠⁠That is extravagant love.⁠⁠“A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another." John 13:34 NIVRead the full devotion at

Feb 10

18 min 21 sec

This is a sample devotion from our newly released book on equality. Check it out at⁠⁠Daily Devotion - Equality among Multiple Generations In the Church⁠⁠Read 1 Timothy 5:1-2 CSB⁠⁠We have all been in a place where we look to the younger or older generation with judgment and condescending thoughts within the church; although, one is not more important than another. The local church is supposed to be a place of unity surrounded by the gospel. However, generational conflict and strife between different age groups are as prominent as ever.⁠⁠Generations are separated within the local church, not having the opportunity to learn and grow under the wisdom and knowledge from each other. Or worse, there are churches where one cannot even find more than one or two generations represented within the congregation.⁠⁠EQUALITY OF AGE⁠⁠1 Timothy 5:1-2 gives a beautiful example of what it means to have unity and equality of age, and also, how we should treat all age groups within the local church. We are to treat and exhort (another word for encouragement) the older men and women as parents, and we should look at the younger men and women in the church as siblings. Within the local church, we are committed to each other through membership, therefore we are committed to each other like a family. Paul instructed Timothy to close the gap of multiple generations to create equality and peace and to simply encourage the church to be family.⁠⁠Each person of each age is important and is made in the image of God. This is important to remember when there is conflict between ages within the church. The 55+ group is not the church of the past, but they are the church. The children and youth groups are not the future of the church, but the church. The church should be a place of equality of all ages just as it is a place of equality of all races, nationalities, and languages. Each age group and generation brings a different perspective and gift to the local church, and that should be celebrated. Equality of age is a beautiful picture of the church and shows a necessary aspect that is needed to be a healthy and growing church.Read the full devotion at

Feb 8

19 min 22 sec

This is a sample devotion from our newly released devotional book and journal Equality: Created Equal in His Image. We'd love to have you check it out at⁠⁠Daily Devotion - Colossians 3:14-15 - Ruled By Peace⁠⁠Have you ever compared yourself or your circumstances to others? I know I have. The voice in my head says, “I wish I were more like…,” or “I’m not as successful/attractive/respected/thin/etc. as…,” or “They have it all together, not like me.” Sometimes the voice sounds more along the lines of, “I’m glad I’m not like…,” or “They should try harder to make better choices as I do,” or “Their kids are so messed up, not like mine. What did they do wrong?”⁠⁠Sound familiar? When we compare ourselves to others, we fall into the enemy's trap of believing what I call “Ladder Lies.” This is where we are ruled by the worldly perspective that we exist in a system of hierarchies, where some are above and some fall below, and the goal of life is to climb up and keep others down.⁠⁠At their core, these lies are judgments. Whether we judge ourselves as inferior or superior, judgments are based on insecurity in who we are in Christ: existing on an equal plane with others as “heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ” (Romans 8:17). As Paul described, “There is no Jew or Greek, slave or free, male and female, since you are all one in Christ Jesus” (Galatians 3:28). Ladder Lies oppose the Kingdom's perspectives of equality and unity.⁠⁠When we look at others through Christ’s loving eyes, we see ourselves as equal and unified. We stand side-by-side before God’s throne, “holy and dearly loved” (Colossians 3:12). Comparing ourselves to others robs us of contentment. Ladder Lies are forms of idolatry that lead to anger, hatred, malice, and wrath. Knowing who we are in Christ and standing in equality and unity with others are the pathways to peace.⁠⁠PRAYER⁠⁠Lord Jesus, cleanse my thoughts of all judgments of myself and others. Remove my Ladder Lies and all hierarchical perspectives, and help me to put on love.Read the full devotion at

Feb 3

18 min 39 sec

DAILY DEVOTION - ECCLESIASTES 1 - THE ELUSIVE PURSUIT OF HAPPINESSAs a nation, we (US) Americans thrive on what's new. It seems to be the engine of our economy, and the goal of our pursuit of happiness. Businesses and social networks are dedicated to helping us pursue the elusive pursuit of happiness.With all we have, shouldn’t we be happy?And yet, more people than ever are medicated for depression and anxiety, while suicide rates soar. Our collective pursuit of happiness is an elusive, never-ending effort, which leaves most people empty-handed.And yet, all of this is nothing new. Ancient wisdom tells us this.Could it be we are looking for the wrong kind of happiness, in the wrong places, and in the wrong way?This is the point, more or less, of the book of Ecclesiastes.King Solomon amassed great wealth, hundreds of wives and concubines, was well-learned, and yet he viewed all of it as pointless. What would bring him to that view of life? Well, that's a long story but it leads to the wisdom found in Ecclesiastes.Solomon speaks to the redundancy of life itself. All we do in life no matter how new or special it may seem has been done before. And he drives home this cynical and pessimistic view of life by returning to various generations of people that come and go and are forgotten.Our worldview—how we view the world and our place in it all—is a very personal and subjective issue. What makes it complicated is our individuality—how we are distinct and unique from others.And yet, the basis for how we view the world simplifies it all.Our worldview impacts our sense of meaning and purpose in life.This is the crux of the book of Ecclesiastes. When our worldview is earthbound and based on human nature, it’s easy to develop a cynical or pessimistic worldview.However, if we believe God is the Creator and Lord of all, we are more likely to see an order and purpose to our life that rises above the cynical and pessimistic view so often presented by those who don’t believe or trust in God.What is your worldview based on?Do you see life on earth as boring and pointless or having meaning and purpose?How you answer these questions is important.Read the full devotion at

Feb 1

19 min 17 sec

Daily Devotion - James 4:8-10 - Fully Draw Near to GodAs I was reading one of my favorite series, The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis, there was a moment within The Prince Caspian that never stood out to me before. After Aslan has been away for hundreds of years, Lucy thinks she sees him, but after her other siblings do not believe her, she also begins to doubt.Later on in the book, she finally regains fellowship with Aslan, and she says,“I knew it was you the whole time, but the others did not believe.”Then Aslan gracefully responds with,“And why would that stop you from coming to me?”Those ten words really resonated with me deeply. What in my life would stop me from coming to Christ? What am I placing above Him that is hindering me to fully and uncontrollably run after God? Lucy didn’t come to Aslan because the others didn’t believe. Personally, my pride and sinful heart has caused me to not bring honor to God countless times!So fellow brothers and sisters, what is stopping you from drawing near to God? James 4:8-10 writes, Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Be miserable and mourn and weep. Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom. Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will exalt you.Here, James is directing us on how we must act towards our Father!Believer, posture your heart towards Christ, laying aside all sinful desires. Matthew Henry writes,“The heart that has rebelled must be brought to the foot of God; the spirit that was estranged from a life of communion with God must become acquainted with Him again.”We must continually humble ourselves, posturing our hearts differently, so that we can approach Him reverently. Don’t let the sin you are holding on too so tightly keep you from coming to God. Draw near to him, humble yourself before Him as you cleanse your hands, and your hearts. Put to death the things that are stopping you from coming to Christ, whether that be the opinions of others, pride, or whatever sin you are grasping onto.Your fears, and sin should not stop you from drawing near.Read the full devotion at

Jan 27

17 min 25 sec

Daily Devotion - Isaiah 6:9 - Explaining My Relationship with God⁠⁠How do I explain my relationship with God to others, namely unbelievers? My small group leader got me thinking on this question this past Sunday, and what came to mind repeatedly was Isaiah 6:9.⁠⁠“And I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?” Then I said, “Here am I! Send Me.” And he said, “Go, and say to this people: “’Keep on hearing, but do not understand; keep on seeing, but do not perceive.’” ESV⁠⁠PERCEIVING GOD⁠⁠Isaiah had a tough assignment. His commission from the Lord made it evident that most of the people would listen, but not take heed to, his prophetic words. The strength of my relationship with God is in the evidence of when I am not like those people. When I hear words from scripture and apply what is said, it represents an understanding of deeper truths God is wanting to teach me. ⁠⁠Isaiah 5 is a poetic description of the self-destruction of the people of Judah. He pronounces “woes” upon them because they are greedy, drunken, unjust, and mocking God in their sin. In chapter 6 a favorite king, Uzziah, has died. To comfort and encourage him, Isaiah gets the blessing of seeing the Lord still on the throne in all his glory. ⁠⁠UNDERSTANDING OUR NEED FOR PURIFICATION⁠⁠That is a scary thought. Purification is dangerous, but Isaiah leaned in close for the cleansing. He was then told to go preach to those who would not do the same. How can I make sure I end up like Isaiah, understanding and perceiving?⁠⁠I am rebellious, lazy, and stubborn. I back up from the throne because I want to maintain control.⁠⁠Recently, I heard a missionary say that Isaiah must have been face down to the ground in front of the throne, because all he could describe was the train, or hem, of God’s robe. I love this thought! I pray I am there with Isaiah every day, describing each stitch in detail.⁠⁠This how I explain my relationship with God. I lean in close. I read his word and listen to trusted spiritual leaders. May these thoughts always set me in motion! Here am I, send me.⁠Read the full devotion at

Jan 25

19 min 10 sec

Daily Devotion - Seeing the Character of God Clearly⁠⁠1 Peter 5:6-11 is a fairly common passage that I'm sure many of us have read before. If you are familiar with these verses, I encourage you to read back through them again. ⁠⁠WHAT STANDS OUT TO YOU IN THIS PASSAGE?⁠⁠These verses always make me think about our line of direct communication with God. Have you ever felt like you were imposing on someone else? I sure have. It feels so incredibly awkward and uncomfortable—it makes me want to slink away from the room and never return to it again. Because we know what it's like to be an imposition, it can be tempting to not tell anyone when we're struggling—we don't want to bother them. We don't want to feel the scourge of imposing on another person.⁠⁠Yet God—Almighty God, the creator and sustainer of the entire universe—welcomes our cares. Seriously! Just think about this revolutionary truth about the character of God for a moment! We can cast our anxieties upon Him, not because He is a doormat or is paid to hear our problems or has nothing better to do. No! We can come to Him because He cares deeply for us.⁠⁠This passage has much more to say about the character of God. Here’s what stands out to me:⁠⁠God is powerful, involved in our lives, morally righteous, and at work (v.6)⁠⁠He is compassionate, attentive, and aware (v.7)⁠⁠God is eternal, gracious, glorious, and welcoming (v.10)⁠⁠He is worthy of all honor, glory, and praise (v.11)⁠⁠This is by no means an exhaustive list; if these verses remind you about other aspects of the character of God, that's amazing! Take a few moments to thank Him for who He is. Praise His name and enjoy His presence.⁠⁠For years, I thought 1 Peter 5:6-11 was all about me, but it's actually all about Him! Even when I am being instructed to humble myself or cast my cares upon Him, it's still not all about me. Since I know the character of God, I can choose to behold Him. As a response to His unsurpassable greatness, I can (and should) humble myself before Him. Because of His goodness, I can cast my cares upon Him.

Jan 20

20 min 41 sec

Daily Devotion - Hebrews 12:1 - The Christian Walk and Race⁠⁠Read Hebrews 12:1 ESV⁠⁠“Too fast!” My coach warned me at one mile into the three-mile race.⁠⁠Most of my high school years were spent on a cross-country course or a track. I wasn’t an amazing athlete, but I was decent enough to be an average high school runner. So when my coach read the current race time to me while I was running early in the race, I thought pridefully, “Wow! I am an awesome runner!”⁠⁠But the pace I was running at that point in the race was unsustainable for the whole three-mile event, especially for one with punishing and seemingly endless hills.⁠⁠My eagerness had been shortsighted, and although I had completed what was set before me, I could have done better.⁠⁠Hebrews 12:1 ESV talks about the endurance we need for living our life here on earth. ⁠⁠Our life is a race and we want to be victorious in it. What can we learn from the runner that would help us in our walk?⁠⁠LISTEN TO THOSE WISER THAN YOU, BUT REALIZE THAT YOU MIGHT MESS UP ANYWAY⁠⁠In our Christian walk, it serves us to listen to the voice of experience from another, more mature, Christian. We are “surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses” and should reach out to them for support and wisdom.⁠⁠NOT EVERYTHING CAN BE A SPRINT⁠⁠In life, I tend to like a slow and steady pace for the tasks at hand, and my growth as a Christian tends to mirror that. But there are significant times where I have to work faster or grow faster. Faithfulness often requires a long-term mindset and a heart that endures. My strength for endurance needs to come from the Lord.⁠⁠FOCUS LIKE AN ATHLETE⁠⁠Many athletes make significant sacrifices to be better at their sport. All of them give up time. Others might find that they are not able to travel, watch TV, or go out with friends as much as they want. Our Christian walk may call us to throw off things that are weighing us down in our walk.⁠⁠Be honest with yourself and talk it over with God in prayer to determine whether something is holding you back in your Christian walk.⁠Read the full devotion at

Jan 18

26 min 35 sec

Daily Devotion -Philippians 2:5-8 - Christmas Upside Down⁠⁠Read Philippians 2:5-8 NIV⁠⁠I watch the dazzling lights of the Christmas tree and the smiling faces of my friends. A happy family gathered around the tree, laughing and spreading good vibes. I am thankful to be with them this Christmas but I can't participate fully in their excitement and joy. There is a coldness in my stomach, and a hot tear is burning in my eyes. This Christmas is so much different – a Christmas upside down. Nobody can understand my pain.⁠⁠And then I hear this gentle voice in my thoughts, "I can. I understand you, my child and I deeply care."⁠⁠On Christmas Eve we celebrate the glorious night when God enters our world as a baby. But for the rest of the universe, such an act equals unexplained humiliation. God, the Creator of the universe, formed into a normal human being, lived a life limited by the flesh, and died nailed to a cross. Why?⁠⁠To become Immanuel - God with us, He needed to become one of us, subject to the limitations and needs of the flesh. In this way, He is fully able to empathize with our weaknesses and struggles and to intercede for us as our High Priest. (Hebrew 4:15 NIV)⁠⁠As fully man, Jesus can understand us completely, more than any other human being on this planet. And as fully God He is able to help and comfort us perfectly.⁠⁠Christ's birth and death are an example of how God can turn something good even in the darkest hours in history. The cross and the resurrected Christ prove that there is nothing strong enough to take away our reason to have joy in the Lord.⁠⁠Living in this time of history is not easy. The world seems out of control with a global pandemic erasing our normal, sending waves of uncertainty, chaos, and fear. Maybe you are tempted to feel abandoned by God in such a time as this.⁠⁠Pondering the wonder of the incarnation that introduced God's Kingdom, I am awed and humbled. My heart is aching but the Healer is at work. He is still sitting on the throne; He is still the master of the world's history. He was, He is and He is to come. Read the full devotion at

Dec 2020

18 min 12 sec

Daily Devotion - Luke 2:8-12 - The Passover Lamb⁠⁠Read Luke 2:8-12⁠⁠Luke 2:8-12 was the first scripture I recall memorizing as a child; yet it wasn’t the result of attending Sunday School because we were not a church-going family. No, this scripture memorization was the result of my brothers and I watching a Christmas special on TV—specifically “A Charlie Brown Christmas.” And what better theologian to share this message than the thumb-sucking, blanket-wielding cartoon character, Linus Van Pelt. And who would think that through the medium of an animated Christmas special, God would have Charles M. Schultz, Linus’ creator, share this profound truth about the Passover Lamb. Remarkably so, even now, this gospel truth is still being shared over the airwaves through this program⁠⁠The Passover Lamb from Bethlehem⁠⁠But what was so special about the shepherds that the angel appeared to? And why Bethlehem? Why not Jerusalem, which was also referred to as “David’s city”? It was in and around Bethlehem where the passover lambs were raised that were sacrificed in the Temple. The shepherds, though considered lowly and unimportant, were charged with raising and tending those spotless, unblemished lambs.⁠⁠Jesus is referred to as the Lamb of God. He was the ultimate Passover Lamb. So, in order for the words spoken by the prophet Micah to be fulfilled, Jesus had to be born in Bethlehem.⁠⁠Read Micah 5:2⁠⁠Did I know and understand this when I memorized the lines that Linus spoke as I watched as a child? No, but like Mary, I treasured these words, this profound truth in my heart. I am warmed in my soul every Christmas when Linus takes the stage to recite these verses, telling Charlie Brown and the entire viewing audience, the true reason for Christmas.⁠⁠What about you, friend? Will you take the Baby Jesus from the manger this Christmas to be your Passover Lamb? To be your resurrected Savior? Will you take the angel at his word, “A savior, which is Christ the LORD.” The shepherds rejoiced and were the first to find Jesus, what about you?⁠Read the full devotion at

Dec 2020

17 min 30 sec

Daily Devotion - Isaiah 6:1-7 - Learning to Behold God⁠⁠Read Isaiah 6:1-7⁠⁠What stands out to you in this passage? This is one of my favorite passages in the Bible. I find this particular scene to be incredibly evocative—it makes me want to behold God. It stirs such awe and wonder within me. He leaves me awe-struck. You may have read this particular story before and, if so, I encourage you to put yourself in the story. Try to imagine what is happening in this incredible scene!⁠⁠How would you have reacted if you saw God in all His splendor?⁠⁠Isaiah's first response is repentance. He immediately confesses his sinful state when confronted with the pure holiness of Almighty God. Here we see that God doesn't use His omnipotent glory to punish or demean the lowly Isaiah. Instead, He honors Isaiah's humility and heals him. And God does the same for us too! When we understand our sinful nature and humbly confess our sins to God, He extends forgiveness, healing, and freedom to us.⁠⁠God is good and God is great. We see both of these attributes in full display in this wondrous story.⁠⁠Isaiah's repentance is a beautiful form of worship, which is just as incredible as the angels' response to God's glory in this passage. These amazing creatures (who are so weirdly described that I can't even fully picture them) were declaring God's holiness. They were speaking truth, calling to each other the sweet song about God's character. They were proclaiming His goodness to whoever would listen.⁠⁠Isaiah likely went through a roller coaster of emotions in this passage: sorrow, fear, awe, lament, and more. These verses remind me that no matter how we're feeling or what we've been through, God's greatness is still true. His holiness is still intact. But He isn't out of sync with how we're feeling, nor is He dismissive of us. God meets with us because He loves us. He is gentle, caring, and kind while also being righteous, just, and holy. ⁠⁠We serve an immensely glorious God who seeks to be with us. No matter how we're feeling today, let's embrace His presence. Let's behold Him today!⁠⁠What is God saying to you?⁠Read the full devotion at

Dec 2020

18 min 16 sec

Daily Devotion - 2 Corinthians 4:16-18 - Eternal Perspective⁠⁠Anytime you watch a football game, there will more than likely be questionable calls made by the referees that could ultimately decide the direction of the game. The referees go to the replay booth to watch the game from different perspectives to ensure the right call is made. All people, including Christians, can have a tough time looking at what is right in front of their face which leads them to lose the larger perspective.⁠⁠Sanctification⁠⁠Paul had every reason to lose heart. He was beaten, mocked, shipwrecked, and brought to the point of death all for the cross of Christ. He could have endured any one of those moments and lost his eternal perspective. Paul points to the truth that although our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day.⁠⁠We are more like Christ now than we were twelve hours ago. You are more like Christ now than when you first started reading this. Understanding sanctification is important for believers to rightly interpret what happens in our life from the perspective that it is transforming us to look more like Christ.⁠⁠Change of Perspective⁠⁠Paul calls what he is going through “light momentary affliction.” ⁠⁠Everything in your life must be put in the perspective of eternity. The election chaos that has happened lately is “light momentary affliction” compared to eternity. The current trials you are facing in your life today are “light momentary affliction” compared to eternity. The affliction you face today Paul would say is “preparing for you an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison.”⁠⁠Be encouraged in this truth that what you face today is minuscule compared to eternity. This is not to say that the problems you face are small. But you can learn to look at them with the perspective of eternity.⁠⁠Hope for the Future⁠⁠Paul had hope. ⁠⁠There is hope for us as believers today who have submitted to the Lordship of Jesus that we are being prepared for an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison.Read the full devotion at

Dec 2020

21 min 30 sec

Daily Devotion - Psalm 27:14 - Spiritual Courage⁠⁠I think you’ll agree with me when I say finding spiritual courage in times of fear isn’t easy. Yes, fear is a powerful foe. It prevents me from living in faith and causes anxiety. I experience a loss of control and find myself alone.⁠⁠The coronavirus pandemic is an excellent example of how fear engulfs people’s mindset. This unfortunate virus outbreak created a social environment filled with uncertainty and full of unrealistic behaviors. The reason for society’s fearful response is its threat to human life.⁠⁠In fact, many governments across the globe took drastic measures to prevent the spread of Covid-19. They imposed strict rules and jailed people for violation of those ordinances. Those well-intentioned efforts are fear-driven.⁠⁠This widespread sickness is but one illustration of how fear penetrates the mind and soul of individuals. Many other life circumstances stir up unwanted feelings based on self-centered fears.⁠⁠So what’s the solution to fear?⁠⁠Christ’s courage.⁠⁠Here’s something we both can agree on; Jesus gives an inner-strength unlike any known to humanity. The result of abiding in Christ is spiritual courage that evaporates fear. We discover a Christian confidence to live in peace.⁠⁠When Judas betrayed Christ Jesus and turned Him over for His execution (Mark 14:43-46) the world bear witness to an exceptional display of fearlessness. Our Messiah showed spiritual courage more powerful than any known to humanity. In fact, He took on every torturous act man inflicted with grace.⁠⁠The key that unlocks Christ’s courage is praying from the heart. Prayer opens up the door to God’s ear. When I pray with a humble spirit, then Christ takes my hand and strengthens my soul. In return, the Holy Spirit takes away the fear and replaces it with courage.⁠⁠How do you overcome fear?⁠⁠Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord! Psalm 27:14 ESVRead the full devotion at

Dec 2020

22 min 45 sec

Daily Devotion - Revelation 2:7 - To Him Who Overcomes⁠⁠It’s very clear in the bible that all true Christians are to live a life that overcomes. Revelations 2:7 says “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes I will give to eat from the tree of life, which is in the midst of the Paradise of God.”⁠⁠Which one of us does not want to eat from that tree of life? However, for us to do that, we must live an overcoming life of victory over sin; overcoming all our trials and hardships, being steadfast and unmoveable, dealing with our sinful hearts, and not allowing our circumstances to take away the joy and peace we have in Christ. ⁠⁠I must admit, there have been many, many times throughout my journey that I failed in this area. I have been moved by jealousy and tempted to complain, but I was determined to cleanse those feelings since they did not produce a good outcome.⁠⁠So, do you allow your life’s circumstances to teach you or destroy you? ⁠⁠Our circumstances can often lead us to make good decisions, but they can also lead us to the wrong ones. Discernment is needed through the guidance of the Holy Spirit alone. Learn from those whom the Lord has put into your life. ⁠⁠Psalm 119:11 NKJV reads Your word I have hidden in my heart, That I might not sin against You.⁠⁠As I ponder on the above verse, I realize what the key is to overcoming hurt, temptations, and teachable moments. I must, without a shadow of a doubt, hide God's words in my heart to stay steadfast on his promises. That is the key for me to be pleasing in his sight and for me to walk worthy of my calling. To him who overcomes, we must read and listen to God's word, and be teachable through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit each day. ⁠⁠Finally, my brethren, Hebrews 12:1 says Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, ⁠⁠May the peace of our Lord Jesus be with you all as you strive to overcome sin in this life.Read the full devotion at

Dec 2020

22 min 20 sec

Daily Devotion - Jeremiah 16:10-11 - Distractions⁠⁠People across the world are “staying home” due to the coronavirus, also known as COVID-19. My daughter and I have been home together for the last 17 days or so. I'm trying to work from home and also be “teacher” as I help her with the assignments from her real teacher.⁠⁠As it’s been a season of unexpected change for all of us, my daughter and I are trying to manage as best as we can. I'm also trying to give grace, as we are all navigating this new sense of loss of so many things. ⁠⁠I still try to keep her on a routine. It's not perfect, but it gives us both a sense of structure and normalcy in what we are each facing. Part of that routine is spending the earlier parts of the morning doing school work. Her escape has been watching YouTube. Because it gives me time to focus on my work, I've allowed it. That and I recognize that we each take our mental breaks differently.⁠⁠On this particular morning, I was asking her to do some schoolwork and she found a way to complain about every bit of it. I’d spent quality time with God that morning and managed to remain calm during all the whining and hysterics; however, I took her tablet from her, telling her that until she focused on what she needed to do she wasn’t getting it back.⁠⁠She went back to her assignment but was still crying and playing with her fake boot (don’t ask... long story). As I told her that if she didn’t resume working and stop playing with her boot, I was going to take away anything that distracted her. I felt my heart instantly convicted and had to say out loud, “Lord have mercy.” My heart had indeed been convicted.⁠⁠God is a jealous God and doesn’t want anything competing for our attention. I know He’s telling me that He’ll remove anything from my life that is distracting my thoughts from Him. I wonder if this is what this difficult season is about? I know I’ve been learning some lessons in Jeremiah 16, and as I’ve seen how it applies to what we’re experiencing in today’s world, I know there's a portion that talks about God not being willing to share our attention with any other gods.⁠⁠⁠Read Jeremiah 16: 10-11 NIVRead the full devotion at

Dec 2020

21 min 40 sec

Daily Devotion - Matthew 10:29-31 - God Cares⁠⁠Read Matthew 10:29-31⁠⁠Concentration ruined his attention jerks toward ear-splitting squawks—and a flash of emerald. Then like a vapor in the wind, they vanish. After intermittent disruptions, he sneaks in for closer inspection. The noisy culprits? Wild parrots.⁠⁠As my son regales me with tales of his crazy bird sightings and the rumors sustaining his theory, I think he must be mistaken. So I google “Wild parrots in California.” Instead of finding no evidence, I find a 1960’s newspaper report of an extensive fire in Bel Air revealing that many panicked residents released their pets to save them. Especially the birds.⁠⁠They seem to be attracted to the palm trees surrounding my son’s office. Maybe their genetic programming propels them to the site since jungles are a bit scarce—at least the tree kind of jungle in Cali. So, the next time we have a patio lunch date, I watch for these abrasively noisy yet fascinating birds. They fly in large flocks yet pair off in twos upon landing. It's apparent even in nature, a need for companionship and special relationships exist. ⁠⁠Solomon tells us in Ecclesiastes 4:12 NIV, “Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.⁠⁠God relishes our company, yet he created us for companionship. So we strive to forge a bond of two, but to secure a bond of three—increases our chance of survival in our fight to soar above life’s storm clouds without a crash. ⁠⁠Scripture tells us again and again of God’s love for us, but if you need a human tripod be proactive. Call a friend, volunteer, join a book club, or a bible study to broaden your circle. ⁠⁠But if you can’t follow Solomon’s advice during this Covid trial, take heart. If you feel alone in the melee and pushed to the margins of a world spinning backward, don’t despair. Our Lord adores you and watches over you day in and day out. So no matter if you feel more like the drab brown sparrow than the colorful verdant parrot, God loves you more than even those. Read the full devotion at

Dec 2020

18 min 19 sec

Daily Devotion - 2 Corinthians 5:7 - Trust in the Light⁠⁠Have you ever driven down a highway at night?⁠⁠I grew up in a very rural part of Western North Carolina. I remember how easy it was to get lost on those country backroads at night. If you didn’t know where you were going, you had no business being on the road after dark.⁠⁠Alone at night on a country highway, the only lights you have comes from the headlights of your car. You can only see about twenty feet ahead of you, which was just enough time to stop if you need to.⁠⁠If there was danger far out ahead of you, there was rarely any warning. You had to trust the light and be prepared. ⁠⁠It’s funny because sometimes life is like driving along on one of those country roads on a winter night. You never know what to expect. ⁠⁠All you can do is trust the light. ⁠⁠I know you want to know what’s coming. I understand things are scary right now and everything is uncertain. But if you knew what was around the corner, you might turn back. ⁠⁠Part of living by faith means you have to move without clear evidence. In other words, sometimes you have to go, and trust the Light will show you what you need to know at the right time. ⁠⁠Sometimes walking by faith means you have to act on urges or promptings that other people can’t see. You will find yourself in a position where you have to trust the process and not the way things look right now. ⁠⁠Trust in the Light for Guidance⁠⁠It takes guts to live by faith. It requires you to address your beliefs about what you need to know in life. You come face to face with who you are when you’re under pressure. ⁠⁠You can settle for a life of certainty. But certainty can only provide comfort for so long. Eventually, it gets old, and you start seeking novel experiences to add variety to your life. Or you become so fearful of new experiences that you slowly die inside. ⁠⁠Jesus didn’t promise his followers certainty in life apart from his presence.⁠⁠When you’re lost and have no idea what to do, trust in the Light to show you where to go.⁠⁠For we live by believing and not seeing. 2 Corinthians 5:7 NLTRead the full devotion at

Nov 2020

20 min 22 sec

Daily Devotion - Choosing Gratitude in a Difficult Season⁠⁠This may be the most unusual Thanksgiving season you’ve experienced. After a year of difficult changes that have affected everyone around the globe, it may be harder than ever to truly be grateful. But with God’s help, we can choose gratitude during Thanksgiving 2020.⁠⁠This year has been a year of losses for many. Lost loved ones, jobs, and health. Lost opportunities to gather, celebrate, and worship. Loss of traditions, belief in institutions, and trust.⁠⁠God knows our losses. He has been close to you when you suffered, whether you felt it or not. He collected every one of your tears in 2020 (Psalm 56:8) because you are precious to him.⁠⁠But it is His will for you to give thanks in all circumstances, even the ones that are unusual and difficult.⁠⁠Why is giving thanks God’s will for you? This directive in 1 Thessalonians 5 is part of a list of traits for Christian living. Paul writes that as Christians, we are to be sanctified (set apart and made holy) for God’s glory.⁠⁠Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. 1 Thessalonians 5:18 ESV⁠⁠When we act in ways that are contrary to the world, relying on the Holy Spirit to empower us, we demonstrate that we are different from everyone else. Our gratitude in 2020 can speak volumes to the unbelieving world. It can be your most powerful way to witness this Thanksgiving.⁠⁠Take a few minutes to reflect on the losses you experienced this year, no matter how small. What did they teach you about God? About yourself? About the way God wants you to live? Can you find a reason to be thankful, despite the difficulty you faced?⁠⁠You can choose gratitude in this difficult season too. Invite the Lord into your reflection time. Ask him to help you see areas where you have been stretched for his glory. Name the reasons you are thankful for what you learned in 2020, in spite of all the difficulties.⁠⁠And be sure to tell someone what you’re thankful for. You just may inspire someone to learn more about Jesus this Thanksgiving, due to your gratitude.Read the full devotion at

Nov 2020

19 min 36 sec

Daily Devotion - Hebrews 11:1 - A Call to Persevere in Faith⁠⁠There are times when we all need a little encouragement. The pressures of life are real, none of us are immune, and on occasions, we can feel weary or discouraged. ⁠⁠Encouragement is defined as giving someone the courage and confidence to do something. This is often thought to be with kind and supportive words, or maybe even practical help, which are all a blessing. But true encouragement, or exhortation, is found by drawing closer to God. It is there that we find our ever-present help, our refuge, and our strength. Let us build ourselves up ‘in the faith,’ with the courage and confidence to trust in God, through times of great need. One way of strengthening our faith is by remembering all that God has done for us – to remind ourselves of His faithfulness.⁠⁠The scripture reading today is a call to draw near to God and to keep on persevering in faith, through remembrance of the reconciling work of Jesus.⁠⁠We have been given this boldness and confidence to approach God, through faith in Jesus Christ. He has made the way, by His death and resurrection, for us to be reconciled to God. We can come to an approachable and relational God, who is attentive to us, because of Jesus’ sacrifice. ⁠⁠In the Old Testament, the sprinkling of water was used as a symbolic and ritual act of cleansing in the Temple. The imagery here, though, is of our hearts being sprinkled, that by faith we are cleansed from sin, and all guilt removed. We no longer have a guilty conscience; we are free from condemnation. There is no arrogance in full assurance of righteousness, when it is founded in faith, from believing in Jesus’ all-sufficient sacrifice.⁠⁠In the New Testament baptism closely followed conversion – the decision to believe and become a follower of Jesus. We follow that pattern, believing in the symbolism that baptism depicts, that through faith we are united with Christ through his death and resurrection. The power of sin over our lives has been broken.⁠⁠“Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.” Hebrews 11:1 NIVRead the full devotion at

Nov 2020

24 min 57 sec

Daily Devotion - Hebrews 13:1-2 - Whose Life Matters?Ever felt like the odd man or woman out? You know, the person who no one notices or sees? The one who’s alone in a crowd? Maybe even the one who’s shunned or even jeered?That was me during my growing-up years. I was the kid who was shunned by the “cool” crowd. I was the kid who nobody wanted on their baseball team. I was the boy who not only couldn’t get the girl—but was picked on by the girls!In other words: I didn’t matter.That’s exactly why Paul was so special. He was handsome, smart, and popular—a “most-likely-to-succeed” type. And yet he noticed me. He befriended me. He listened to me. He treated me with respect. He refused to count me as a “reject” like many of my other high school peers.To him, I was definitely someone who did matter.All Around Us are Lives that MatterAll around us are people whose lives “matter” yet are never noticed. They file in and out (or drift from church to church) every week without anyone acknowledging them. They carry hurts; they carry sorrows; they carry fears. They also carry God’s heart, God’s calling, and God’s anointing. And yet they may never be released from their darkness and into their calling. Why? Because we’re too busy with our own agendas, our own circle of friends, and our own world to notice them.Let People Know They MatterIt was through Paul. It was through other Jesus-followers like him whose paths I crossed as a young college student. To these dear saints, Jesus wasn’t a religion. He was their life. And because He mattered to them, I mattered to them. Because of them, I am where I am today.Next time you go to church, find the person who wouldn’t normally “matter” to you. Seek him or her out. Go out of your way to greet them—not at the “scheduled time in the service,” but spontaneously. Ask their name. Ask a non-threatening question or two. Heck just smile at them!Let them know they matter.And hey, why stop with church? Let your neighbor know he or she matters. Let your co-worker who may not look or think like you know they matter.Because when you come right down to it, every life matters.Read Hebrews 13:1-2Read the full devotion at

Nov 2020

23 min 34 sec

Daily Devotion - Psalm 73:28 - God’s Presence Is My Good⁠⁠“But as for me, God’s presence is my good. I have made the Lord God my refuge, so I can tell about all you do.” (Psalm 73:28 CSB)⁠⁠When life gets difficult, it is quite easy to slip into a negative cycle of thinking, viewing ourselves as victims and our life as a series of bad events. When a tragedy darkens our world and casts a black shadow on our future, it is tempting to become blind for the good in our life.⁠⁠In moments like that, when I feel my life devoid of any good, struggling to go on through the day, the last words of Psalm 73 breathe fresh hope and help me shift my perspective: “But as for me, God’s presence is my good.”⁠⁠God’s presence is my good. On one side there is the devastating loss, the uncertain future, the hard days full of overwhelming grief and pain, and the stressful transition to another kind of life – a life that I don’t want nor I would have chosen for myself. And on the other side is God’s presence and this is my good that nothing and nobody can take away from me. God’s presence with me and in me is all that matters. It means that I am loved all the time and for eternity. I can rest, I can stop striving, I can stop worrying, I lack nothing because He is my Shepherd.⁠⁠God’s presence means comfort and security. By His indwelling, the Holy Spirit comforts us in all our troubles. There is nothing that compares to the comfort of God. In fact, Jesus said blessed are those who mourn because of the comfort they will receive from Him. (Matthew 5:4) God comforts us by the truths in His eternal Word that stands forever and by His promises for a glorious future incomparable to our present troubles. His comforting presence imparts fresh revelation and brings healing to every wound no matter how deep it is.⁠⁠God’s presence brings joy and peace too. Yes, it is possible to feel simultaneously sorrow and joy, doubt and confidence, anxiety and peace. This is the paradox of living life in the flesh on this earth. Peace and joy in the Lord are not just fleeting emotions, they are deeply rooted confidence in the goodness and love of God, and His purpose and plan for our lives.⁠Read the full devotion at

Nov 2020

21 min 56 sec

Daily Devotion - Romans 5:8 - Easily Loving Others⁠⁠Loving others can often seem challenging or downright impossible some days. From attitudes, lifestyles, or blatant bad choices, loving others can be incredibly difficult.⁠⁠Jesus Loved Others⁠⁠But when I read about Jesus' life, I am reminded that He kept it simple. However, simple doesn't always mean easy, but He is such a perfect example.⁠⁠Think of how He lived. Jesus lived in service to others. Our service often shows our love. Jesus loved us to the point of giving His life for us, even while we were still sinners.⁠⁠This is the simple part; Jesus loved us even though we didn't have it all together. He didn't die just for the people that cleaned up their act or lived right. He died for sinners, while they were still sinners. He didn't shout at the men that hung Him on the cross. He didn't name and number their transgressions. Instead, He asked His father to forgive them.⁠⁠Loving Others Is Rarely Easy⁠⁠Simple, but not always easy. As followers of Christ, we are called to love others. We see this command in the scripture several times over. Love others. But what if they... what about... but remember when...⁠⁠Except, that isn't the language of Jesus. Jesus said, "Father, forgive them, for they don't know what they are doing." - Luke 23:34 NLT⁠⁠Jesus' grace and mercy covers you, even when you do not know what you are doing. Even when you sin. He is beckoning you to love others sacrificially and without recording their wrongs for His review. He didn't even record their wrongs for His own review.⁠⁠Today, I challenge you to serve someone you wouldn't normally. Serve someone difficult in your life. Choose an act of kindness, an act of love, an act of worship, and bless someone that is difficult. Ask Jesus to guide you to the person and to the service, and honor Him in this simple, but not always easy, way.⁠⁠"But God showed us his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners." Romans 5:8 NLTRead the full devotion at

Nov 2020

21 min 25 sec

Daily Devotion - James 1:2-4 - Joy in the Trials⁠⁠"Consider it a great joy, my brothers, whenever you experience various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. But endurance must do its complete work, so that you may be mature and complete, lacking nothing." James 1:2-4 HCSB⁠⁠⁠In the book of James, he says, "WHEN" we face trials, not IF we face trials. In other words, we will face trials during our lifetime. We have all endured trials. Some of us are enduring trials right now.⁠⁠Yesterday. Today. Tomorrow. We will all have trials again, and again.⁠⁠When we do face trials, James says we should count it all joy. When our world is upside down in suffering and pain, this idea seems crazy to our human mind and body. But true joy does not stem from our circumstances, but rather from our trust and relationship with Jesus through the Holy Spirit. James is not saying we have to pretend there is no pain in the trial. But, he is saying we should practice patience in action and look for the positives in the situation.⁠⁠What is God revealing in the situation?⁠⁠Many times God is trying to teach us something specific through our trials:⁠⁠We can learn and nurture patience through trials.⁠We can realize our true character under pressure⁠We can grow in our faith. We can learn to nurture our time with God.⁠We can cultivate a stronger prayer life.⁠⁠God can reach and teach others through our trials. Think about Paul’s time in prison. In 2 Corinthians, Paul reminds us of how he endured the hardship of being in prison. He took that bad situation and made it good. He made it for God’s glory. Paul looked beyond his trial and beyond himself. He saw the prison guards despair. Instead of wallowing in self-pity, he sang praises to God. He encouraged the guards and shared the gospel. He led them to Jesus! That is counting it all joy in action, my friends.⁠⁠Let’s count our joys and always reflect our Light.⁠⁠Like Paul, we should look for ways to demonstrate our faith regardless of our circumstances. We are lights for Jesus. There is a testimony within our trials.Read the full devotion at

Nov 2020

21 min 34 sec

Daily Devotion -Proverbs 16:3 - Divine Appointments⁠⁠Have you ever made plans only to have them changed into something better than you could have imagined in your wildest dreams? ⁠⁠A day after my daughter turned five, she asked to go to Elmo’s World, known to the rest of us as Sesame Place, for her sixth birthday. In case you haven’t picked up on it by now, my daughter got her planning gene from me. The truth is, we both can plan for things years in advance.⁠⁠Throughout the course of the year, she reminded me that for her sixth birthday she wanted a trip to Elmo’s World. So, when we were a few months out, I started planning the logistics. I bought tickets for a set date and then began figuring out how to get there as I don’t like long drives.⁠⁠A few weeks before my daughter’s big day, I noticed online that tickets were now cheaper than what I’d pay for them. There was also another reason I needed to change them. I called the box office, even though I knew I’d purchased non-refundable tickets. I laughed and talked with the young woman who’d answered, and despite the non-refundable clause on my tickets, she gave me the better price.⁠⁠On the day of the party, I took an Uber for the first time. I don’t like new adventures, so I planned for several days in advance how to take my first Uber. It was a fifteen-minute drive from the train stop in New Jersey to Sesame Place. The Uber driver was friendly and open, sharing things that I usually never share with strangers. But as I listened to her discuss her life, I opened up and shared some very personal experiences and lessons I'd learned the hard way.⁠⁠When I was about to leave the car, I asked if I could pray for her. By the time I was finished, we were both in tears.⁠⁠Upon walking into Sesame Place, I knew I’d just had a divine appointment, one only God could have arranged. Sometimes our divine appointments are for others to help us. Sometimes they’re for us to help others.⁠⁠Let us not miss those blessings because we’re too self-focused or angry because things didn’t work out as we’d originally planned.⁠⁠Commit to the LORD whatever you do, and he will establish your plans. Proverbs 16:3 NIVRead the full devotion at

Nov 2020

18 min 16 sec

Daily Devotion - John 21:17-21 - Eye on the PrizeIn John 21, Jesus appears to the disciples after they had returned to their old lives and professions. Peter and the gang had been out fishing all night and they caught nothing. These experienced fishermen came back at dawn empty-handed—how demoralizing! They had left this life of fishing to go follow Jesus, who had just been crucified, and when they tried to return to their previous profession they had nothing to show for it.Then Jesus tells them to cast their nets on the other side of the boat. When they do, they haul in over 150 fish! That’s impressive! Jesus cooks breakfast for them on the beach and they share a meal together. This is where we find that famous passage where Jesus asks Peter three times if he loves him and tells Peter to feed His lambs.Read John 21:17-21 (ESV)Peter just had this incredible moment with Jesus. The Lord physically came to him and gave him the mandate to care for those who Jesus cares about. Jesus prophesies about Peter’s life and then, once again, instructs Peter to follow him.You would think that would be the end of the story, but, of course, it isn’t. This conversation between Peter and Jesus didn’t happen at a table for two, but with a group of disciples sitting around the campfire. So, Peter, in perfect human fashion, takes his eyes off of Jesus and focuses on someone else: John.Instead of being overcome and in awe by Jesus, his appearance, his words, and his prophecy, Peter starts to play the comparison game. Maybe it was sheer curiosity or pure competition, but either way, Peter was more focused on what was going on around him than on the words of Jesus.When I read that, I feel so convicted because I do the same thing. I will have a moment with the Lord and, more often than not, I’ll start to wonder about other people. God, what are you saying to them? I will compare the word God has given me to what God is doing in their lives. I allow comparison to overtake me, instead of staying focused on Jesus.If you’ve been distracted by competition or comparison, that’s okay; let’s lift our eyes up again and put our eyes back on the prize of Jesus today!Read the full devotion at

Nov 2020

23 min 49 sec

Daily Devotion - Philippians 2:1-4 - Seeking Unity in the Church⁠⁠What makes the church the one place in the world where people from all types of backgrounds and cultures can be unified? We all share the same gift from Jesus Christ of salvation: He lived the life you and I could not live, died the death we deserved and rose from the grave three days later. ⁠⁠Philippians is a letter addressed to the church of Philippi. This is a church that Paul loves dearly. At the beginning of the letter, you read how he prays for the church with joy because of their partnership in the gospel (Ph 1:4-5). He loves their church through the problems, but he was not afraid to point out a unity problem that needed to be addressed. We know that whatever issue was causing the division allowed grumbling and disputing among one another to creep into the church (Ph 2:14). Unity in the church can be difficult as everyone has their preferences and ideas on how the church should operate but being grounded in God's Word and the salvation of Jesus Christ means those preferences may need to be set aside at times.⁠⁠Paul does not tell the church how they should achieve unity. Rather he says,⁠⁠Read Philippians 2:1-4⁠⁠The world continues to push the notion that you should be most concerned about you. Do not worry about others but worry about yourself. Paul is telling this church not to be selfish as it was tempting to follow the Roman culture, which proclaimed people were proud and cared about their self-image and status. This is not what the Bible calls us to, but it is countercultural to say, “Do nothing selfish.”⁠⁠Paul connects unity in the church with Christians humbling themselves and counting others more significant than themselves. This is not natural for us to do as Christians, and it takes work and reliance on the Holy Spirit if we are to count others more significant than ourselves. This is not a “Don’t care about yourself and only care about others” attitude, but an attitude that makes you more selfless instead of selfish.⁠⁠Christians who love one another as Jesus has loved us and count others more significant than themselves will be people who have unity with one another.Read the full devotion at

Oct 2020

25 min 25 sec

Daily Devotion - Col 3:2 - Set Your Mind on Things Above⁠⁠Read Colossians 3:2 NIV⁠⁠As I write this devotion, we are in the thick of election season in the United States. Tensions are running high. People are frustrated, upset, anxious, and angry. Opinions fly wildly on social media. Both sides blame each other. No one knows what the future holds, or when the definitive declaration of the winner will be announced. If you focus on the headlines, your anxiety is sure to rise. Negativity runs rampant in the news.⁠⁠But the headlines don’t have to dictate your thoughts.⁠⁠In this challenging time, we have many choices. Not only choices about how to cast our votes, but choices about our thoughts, words, and actions.⁠⁠I wrote a book about using Christian meditation to transform your thought life. One of the best verses to meditate on in this challenging season is Colossians 3:12:⁠⁠Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.⁠⁠When we choose a heavenly mindset, rather than an earth-focused mindset, we have the peace that transcends all understanding (Phil. 4:7), the kind of peace that only God can give (John 14:27). Peace that can defeat the anxiety stirred up by the headlines.⁠⁠You can choose self-control instead of anger, joy instead of negativity and goodness instead of selfishness. Love instead of hate. Gentleness instead of harshness. These are all gifts the Holy Spirit provides us (Gal. 5:22-23), and we must choose to focus on them in this season.⁠⁠Our enemy Satan would love nothing more than for you to set your mind on earthly things. After all, he is the prince of this world (John 12:31) who will one day be defeated. For now, he’s working as hard as he can to wreak havoc on the earth and in your thought life. He’s even using the headlines to do his dirty work.⁠⁠As you surrender your anxiety, negativity, harshness and other sins over to God, he will pour out spiritual blessings on you. Receive these blessings gladly and share them with others. In this way, you’ll spread God’s heavenly kingdom here on earth. You’ll have the peaceful mindset of a heaven-focused person, rather than an anxious earth-focused mindset.Read the full devotion at

Oct 2020

24 min 4 sec

Daily Devotion - 1 Peter 3:4 - Having a Gentle and Quiet Spirit⁠⁠Do not let your adornment be merely outward—arranging the hair, wearing gold, or putting on fine apparel— rather let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God. (1 Peter 3:3-4 NKJV)⁠⁠Gentleness is essential for those of us who want to walk worthy of our calling. How can we identify if we are gentle? Here are some questions we must ask ourselves in order for us to answer that question. ⁠⁠But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. (Gal 5:22 NKJV)⁠⁠First of all, ask yourself, do I have self-control? Do I rule my spirit? Proverbs 16:32 reads "He who is slow to anger is better than the mighty,"⁠⁠Does your temper often rule over your spirit?⁠⁠When someone accuses you of something, do you immediately defend yourself? Or, are you inclined to consider if there’s any truth in what was said? Second, do you get upset only when you are dishonored, rejected, or left out? Do you become angry when you have sinned?⁠⁠Next, do you always seek to make peace? Gentle people are peacemakers, (Eph 4:3 NKJV) endeavoring to keep the unity of the spirit in the bond of peace.⁠⁠If someone close to you falls into sin, do you condemn or gossip about that person?⁠⁠Gossip and condemnation divide the closest of friends and families. Forgiveness and restoration unite them. Gentle people do not start arguments, they end them!⁠⁠Be Gentle by Nature⁠⁠Jesus was gentle by nature; this was shown in his dealings with many sinners and those who opposed his teachings. We are to follow his examples.⁠⁠Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. (Mathew 11:29 NKJV)⁠⁠⁠If we are persecuted, it’s easy for us to think "they can’t treat us that way. I’m a child of God!" But, God desires for us to approach the unsaved with all gentleness, realizing that is how God reached out to us before we were saved.Read the full devotion at Read the full devotion at

Oct 2020

23 min 45 sec

Daily Devotion - Romans 3:23 - The Heavenly Truth of FinishedRecently, I wrote and published my first Christian children's book, "Finished: A Fictional Story With Heavenly Truth". The events portrayed in the book may never have actually happened. The story, however, is meant to get the reader and listener thinking about the real-life heavenly truths found in the book and in Scripture.The beautiful images of "Finished" were created by artist Terri Melia Hamlin. Terri's artwork masterfully tells the story's narrative in a way that is appropriate for children, while, at the same time, shares deeper heavenly truths with the adult reader. "Finished" is meant to encourage dialogue between the two concerning the significance of Jesus' life and death. In today's devotion, I explain some of the symbolism found in the artwork of "Finished".The Symbolism in FinishedThe illustration provided with this devotion shows Joseph assisting Jesus with a project. Jesus has fashioned two boards in the form of a cross. Because he is so little, and the hammer is heavy, Joseph must pound the nails into place. The image is meant to remind us of Jesus’ complete innocence and how each of us, like Joseph, plays a part in the crucifixion of Jesus.I chose a hammer and nails as the instruments used for Jesus' task in this story. These symbols remind us of the hammer and nails used in the Bible's crucifixion narrative.Notice the storm clouds seen through Joseph's workshop window. The clouds are meant to symbolize the darkness of the events of the crucifixion. What a dark day it was as Jesus suffered and died for the sins of all people!The Good New of FinishedThe good news is that Jesus lived and died for us. And, although it was our sin that placed Jesus upon the cross, he died there to remove it from us. Moreover, Jesus' Resurrection three short days later gives us newness of life. We are forgiven, and we are free!The story of "Finished" is quite innocent. It is light and even joyful. By contrast, the heavenly truths conveyed in the story are anything but innocent. Ultimately, Jesus gave his life for us, even though it was our sin that led and held him to the cross."for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus." Romans 3:23-24 NIVRead the full devotion at

Oct 2020

20 min 13 sec

Daily Devotion - 2 Samuel 22:29 - Light in My Darkness⁠⁠The first minute after I wake up is the hardest. I just want to close my eyes again and go back to the land of dreams refusing to face the painful reality of what life turned out after the unexpected loss of my husband. This loss cast a dark cold shadow over me and plunged me into darkness.⁠⁠So, when my feet touch the floor every morning since my life turned upside down, I remind myself that I am not left alone in the darkness. The Lord is my lamp and He turns my darkness into light. He is willing and able to carry me through every darkness I may experience turning it into light. My personal darkness can become a display of His light. He is the light in my darkness.⁠⁠David penned these words in his song of praise when the Lord delivered him from the hand of all his enemies and the hand of Saul. David knew what darkness was–he experienced prolonged years of persecution, loneliness, false accusation, and suffering. Yet, the Lord sustained him, delivered him from all his enemies, and gave him an eternal memory in the genealogy of Christ.⁠⁠Jesus has overcome the world; He has overcome the darkness and He can overcome our darkness because He is the light of the world. There are many ways the Lord turns our darkness into light. One way is by reminding us of His truths and wonderful promises, nourishing and sustaining our souls day by day, hour by hour through His indwelling Spirit. He helps us change our perspective giving us wisdom and understanding. ⁠⁠He breathes life in our weary souls and the desire to come to Him and pour our pain and tears. He woos us to come nearer and to trust Him. The Lord makes us strong and able to endure until this season is over. He comes even closer in the darkness revealing hidden treasures of heavenly wisdom. He collects every tear and numbers all our steps. He is near and He cares.⁠⁠The Lord is the God of all comfort and the Redeemer of our losses. Let’s remember today that His heart is burning with compassion and mercy for us, longing to rebuild, restore, and redeem. Could you trust Him today with your darkness?Read the full devotion at

Oct 2020

24 min 16 sec

Daily Devotion - John 6:32-40 - The Bread of Life⁠⁠Read John 6:32-40 CSB⁠⁠Over the summer, my mother attended a week-long extensive class covering just the science of bread; how it’s prepared, baked, and even served. Hearing her share everything she had learned made me realize that bread really is a part of so much of our lives. Individuals consume bread to meet the needs of physical sustainment, but through Jesus’ statement that He is the Bread of Life, we see that He is the only one who can meet the needs of spiritual sustainment. ⁠⁠In John 6, Jesus states that He is the Bread of Life. This statement alone speaks to His attributes and character. He is our sustainer, sufficient, and means of life. Before we study what Jesus means by this “I Am” statement He gives, we should look at the full context of this passage. Before John 6:35, we see the miracle of Jesus feeding the five thousand. Here, we see Jesus miraculously provide physical sustainment for the multitude with only 2 loaves of bread, and 5 fish. After this, the multitude followed Jesus in awe of the physical feeding that was provided to them. Then Jesus shares this statement, “I Am the Bread of Life.” This statement was controversial, and difficult to understand by many who were following Jesus. We see this confusion by the crowd, and also the disciples. ⁠⁠Jesus shares the Bread of Life does not mean that He is physically bread, but He is our Sustainer, and Giver of life. He is the Bread that is enough for all our spiritual needs. Through Christ, we will never go spiritually hungry, nor will we need to seek anything else besides the One who gives life because He is truly enough. Only through Salvation alone in Jesus Christ alone, is anyone satisfied forever. In John 6, we see Jesus meeting the physical needs of the crowd, and delivering the amazing truth that He always meets our spiritual needs through Salvation. A physical piece of bread helps end hunger for the time being, but Jesus being the Bread of Life ends spiritual hunger for eternity. Read the full devotion at

Oct 2020

19 min 14 sec

Daily Devotion - Matthew 23:37 - Unfulfilled Longing⁠⁠What do you long for in this life? Perhaps you long for love from a parent, a spouse, or a child. Maybe your desire is for something for others, or maybe your longing is based on a desire for yourself. True longings, meaning those deep desires based on the truth of who you are and who God is, are good things, even if they remain unfulfilled.⁠⁠Jesus expressed deep longing. He longed for His children to come to Him and rest in the shelter of His arms:⁠⁠“Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were not willing.” (Matthew 23:37).⁠⁠You can almost hear the pleading in His words: please come to Me; please let me hold you and comfort you and protect you; please receive my love. But they were not willing, and His longing was not realized. Despite His longing being unfulfilled, He continued – and continues – to long for the same thing: His true heart’s desire to gather us to Him.⁠⁠Unrealized Desires⁠⁠Just like Jesus, sometimes our longings are not realized, whether due to the choices of others, circumstances beyond our choosing, or even our own poor choices. But without Christ to guide us, walking on the path He walked where the longing was unfulfilled can be discouraging or feel hopeless, and we can get quickly caught up in the failings or sins of others and fall into sin ourselves. However, Jesus did not lose Himself or forget who He was in response to Jerusalem being unwilling to respond to His plea. ⁠⁠What does it mean, to walk the path of longing with Christ? ⁠⁠I believe He wants us to share in His heart, and to fully share His heart and experience Him, we must walk with Him in both joy and difficulty, in both gain and loss. He desires us to be willing to love completely, no matter what. ⁠⁠I encourage you to walk the path of longing hand in hand with the One who loves perfectly. Allow His love to guide your steps and listen for His voice to gently lead and correct you and sustain you during those times of unfulfilled longing.Read the full devotion at

Oct 2020

21 min 19 sec

Daily Devotion - 1 Corinthians 13 - The Powerful Virtue of Love⁠⁠One of the greatest experiences in life is the virtue of love. Everyone seeks love because it comforts the heart and soothes the soul. Yet, hate exists and some people enjoy inflicting its venomous poison onto others. Hate is troublesome because of its negative impact on the human spirit.⁠⁠Why is Hate so Troublesome?⁠⁠Because it’s an effective sin Satan uses to turn humans away from God.⁠⁠Remember, God removed Lucifer from heaven (Isaiah 14:12-13) and he uses hate to avenge his judgment.⁠⁠I think you’ll agree with me when I say the devil’s clever ways of using hate are cunning. For example, Satan uses prejudice to manifest hate between ethnic groups. The devil creates a hostile environment between cultures leading to death and destruction.⁠⁠Both the New and Old Testament heighten God’s opposition to hates unfavorable existence. And when Christ roamed the earth, He exposed the world’s hatred towards God (John 15:18-25).⁠⁠I can almost hear you thinking nothing good comes from hate. Yes, hate breeds resentment, bitterness, and causes physical harm to others. It’s the way the evil-doer provokes wicked action. A point often overlooked is hate leaves behind a trail of physical and mental devastation.⁠⁠With this in mind, the devil works hard to twist the reality of Christ and he can’t tolerate us embracing God’s virtue of love (James 4:6).⁠⁠What’s the Solution to Hate?⁠⁠God’s powerful virtue of love!⁠⁠Here’s something we both can agree on; there is nothing the world offers that matches our Father’s love. His love gave Adam and Eve a second chance (Genesis 3:22). And because He loved them His grace is extended to us today. How exceptional is that?⁠⁠As if that’s not enough, He sacrificed His Son Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of sin. This selfless display of His love shows He wants to save humanity from the evil one. That's the powerful virtue of love!⁠⁠Read 1 Corinthians 13:4-7Read the full devotion at

Oct 2020

24 min 20 sec

Daily Devotion - John 8:58 - Jesus is the Great I Am⁠⁠"Jesus said to them before 'Most assuredly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I AM." John 8:58⁠⁠Have you ever said something that made a group of religious people so mad that they picked up stones to throw at you? Don't worry I haven't done that either. I have preached many times and I can say that I have not ever faced that at all.⁠⁠In John 8 Jesus said something that completely makes the Jews of His day erupt in anger. They become so angry they try to stone Him, but Jesus escaped.⁠⁠They ask if Jesus viewed Himself greater than Abraham. Jesus' response was that He wasn't honoring Himself but rather the Father and that the Father honors Him. Jesus tells them they don't know the Father but He does.⁠⁠Verses 56-58 read "Your father Abraham rejoiced to see My day, and he saw it and was glad. Then the Jews said to Him, 'You are not yet fifty years old, and have You seen Abraham? Jesus said to them, 'Most assuredly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I AM."⁠⁠After saying this, they became so angry they tried to stone him.⁠⁠Jesus Knew What He Said⁠⁠Jesus didn't make a mistake by saying this. He knew exactly the repercussions of his words. He knew what was going to happen and He concealed himself in escape as the Jews tried to kill him.⁠⁠The reaction of the Pharisees proves they understood Jesus was claiming to be the very God that showed himself to Abraham and Moses.⁠⁠⁠This secures my soul as I can rest in the fact Jesus is God. He is either who He said He was or He is not.⁠⁠Accepting the Great I Am⁠⁠⁠It was at Freeway Ministries 5 years ago I placed my faith and trust in Jesus. Part of that was initially trusting He is God. To this day I still find peace in knowing Jesus is God.⁠⁠⁠In the midst of this season, there is restlessness, fear, extreme viewpoints, and other things that show great unrest. But I can rest in Jesus being God. I don't have to fear the unknown. I can have the assurance that parries all anxiety, assurance that brings about peace and allows me to rest at night. That assurance is knowing Jesus is The Great I Am.⁠Read the full devotion at

Oct 2020

19 min 40 sec

Daily Devotion - Romans 12 - The Best Way to Cast Out Fear⁠⁠Have you ever heard the children’s song “O Be Careful, Little Eyes?” The first verse urges us to be careful about what we see with our eyes because our Father in heaven knows our true intentions. How can we be faithful with our eyes, loving God with everything we see and cast out fear in our lives?⁠⁠Well, October is always a tough month for me because I see so many images of evil, fear, and death. While others seem to enjoy tinkering with fear, I become a cornered wolverine when another Friday the 13th commercial pierces my peaceful evening.⁠⁠But fearful media doesn’t return to its home in the underground come November 1, so I’ve had year-round practice turning my inner wolverine into a laid-back otter.⁠⁠The Apostle Paul provides an answer in the Book of Romans.⁠⁠Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good (Romans 12:9).⁠⁠The Greek word for “abhor” comes from a root meaning “separation.” So to “abhor” evil is more than hating how it makes you feel. It means taking action to separate yourself from evil, whether it’s images, sounds, words, or actions.⁠⁠Cling to What is Good⁠⁠I love scripture because our God is so practical. Not only does He tell us what not to do, such as don’t flirt with evil, but He also tells us what we should do: cling to what is good. And in Philippians 4:8, we get a wonderful list of things to cling to.⁠⁠Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.⁠⁠Are your little eyes viewing truth, nobility, purity, love, goodness, or virtue?⁠⁠If not, consider turning the channel, closing the browser, looking away, walking away, whatever it takes to separate yourself, and cast out fear from your life.⁠⁠The best way to cast out fear is to never let it in.Read the full devotion at

Sep 2020

19 min 31 sec

Daily Devotion - Gal 6:7 - Sowing and Reaping Righteousness⁠⁠Have you ever experienced sin popping up unwanted in your life? I think all of us have found ourselves in that spot. However, fewer things will change the way you deal with sin than understanding the principle of "Sowing and Reaping".⁠⁠Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. Galatians 6:7 NIV⁠⁠As a gardener, I’ve learned that some of the good seeds I plant won’t sprout at all. Birds, squirrels and raccoons sometimes snatch them up before they take root. Other problems like the wrong amount of water, pests, or lack of freshness can impede their growth. It’s a hard fight to get the good seeds to grow in my garden.⁠⁠Sowing and reaping in the garden is an art form. You must be on the defense against weeds, pests, diseases and bad weather. You also must work on offense, using fertilizer, sprays and trellises to give good seeds the best chance at growing. ⁠⁠The apostle Paul wrote honestly about his struggle with his sinful nature in Romans 7. He described it as a war within his heart and mind. Once saved, he truly longed to follow God with all his heart. However, his sinful nature continually messed up his plans.⁠⁠Read Romans 7:21-23 NIV⁠⁠Even when Paul wanted to obey God, it seemed as if his default setting was to be sinful. Like a garden will automatically reset to weeds if left untended.⁠⁠Paul felt frustrated by this battle, knowing he couldn’t win the fight in his own strength or power. Sin seems to hold the upper hand since our sinful nature hates exposure.⁠⁠Just as gardeners are ultimately subject to God’s work in making seeds sprout and sending the rain and sunshine, so are we ultimately subject to God’s work in rescuing us from sin. We can’t have completely problem-free gardens, just like we can’t have completely sin-free lives. To break out of the weary cycle of feeling frustrated, we must rely on God’s power instead of our own.⁠⁠The Master Gardener will help you in both defensive and offensive strategies against sin. He will find you new ways to fight back against your sinful nature and choose the narrow path of obedience instead.Read the full devotion at

Sep 2020

21 min 32 sec