Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Daily Devotional Tuesday 23rd August

“He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?” Romans 8:32 NIV
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Morning and Evening by Charles Spurgeon

Morning

"I charge you, O daughters of Jerusalem, if ye find my beloved, that ye tell him, that I am sick of love."
Song of Solomon 5:8

Such is the language of the believer panting after present fellowship with Jesus, he is sick for his Lord. Gracious souls are never perfectly at ease except they are in a state of nearness to Christ; for when they are away from him they lose their peace. The nearer to him, the nearer to the perfect calm of heaven; the nearer to him, the fuller the heart is, not only of peace, but of life, and vigour, and joy, for these all depend on constant intercourse with Jesus. What the sun is to the day, what the moon is to the night, what the dew is to the flower, such is Jesus Christ to us. What bread is to the hungry, clothing to the naked, the shadow of a great rock to the traveller in a weary land, such is Jesus Christ to us; and, therefore, if we are not consciously one with him, little marvel if our spirit cries in the words of the Song, "I charge you, O ye daughters of Jerusalem, if ye find my beloved, tell him that I am sick of love." This earnest longing after Jesus has a blessing attending it: "Blessed are they that do hunger and thirst after righteousness"; and therefore, supremely blessed are they who thirst after the Righteous One. Blessed is that hunger, since it comes from God: if I may not have the full-blown blessedness of being filled, I would seek the same blessedness in its sweet bud-pining in emptiness and eagerness till I am filled with Christ. If I may not feed on Jesus, it shall be next door to heaven to hunger and thirst after him. There is a hallowedness about that hunger, since it sparkles among the beatitudes of our Lord. But the blessing involves a promise. Such hungry ones "shall be filled" with what they are desiring. If Christ thus causes us to long after himself, he will certainly satisfy those longings; and when he does come to us, as come he will, oh, how sweet it will be!

Evening

"The unsearchable riches of Christ."
Ephesians 3:8

My Master has riches beyond the count of arithmetic, the measurement of reason, the dream of imagination, or the eloquence of words. They are unsearchable! You may look, and study, and weigh, but Jesus is a greater Saviour than you think him to be when your thoughts are at the greatest. My Lord is more ready to pardon than you to sin, more able to forgive than you to transgress. My Master is more willing to supply your wants than you are to confess them. Never tolerate low thoughts of my Lord Jesus. When you put the crown on his head, you will only crown him with silver when he deserves gold. My Master has riches of happiness to bestow upon you now. He can make you to lie down in green pastures, and lead you beside still waters. There is no music like the music of his pipe, when he is the Shepherd and you are the sheep, and you lie down at his feet. There is no love like his, neither earth nor heaven can match it. To know Christ and to be found in him--oh! this is life, this is joy, this is marrow and fatness, wine on the lees well refined. My Master does not treat his servants churlishly; he gives to them as a king giveth to a king; he gives them two heavens--a heaven below in serving him here, and a heaven above in delighting in him forever. His unsearchable riches will be best known in eternity. He will give you on the way to heaven all you need; your place of defence shall be the munitions of rocks, your bread shall be given you, and your waters shall be sure; but it is there, there, where you shall hear the song of them that triumph, the shout of them that feast, and shall have a face-to-face view of the glorious and beloved One. The unsearchable riches of Christ! This is the tune for the minstrels of earth, and the song for the harpers of heaven. Lord, teach us more and more of Jesus, and we will tell out the good news to others.

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Today's reading: Psalm 110-112, 1 Corinthians 5 (NIV)

View today's reading on Bible Gateway

Today's Old Testament reading: Psalm 110-112

Of David. A psalm.

1 The LORD says to my lord:

"Sit at my right hand
until I make your enemies
a footstool for your feet."

2 The LORD will extend your mighty scepter from Zion, saying,
"Rule in the midst of your enemies!"
3 Your troops will be willing
on your day of battle.
Arrayed in holy splendor,
your young men will come to you
like dew from the morning's womb.

4 The LORD has sworn
and will not change his mind:
"You are a priest forever,
in the order of Melchizedek."

...read the rest on Bible Gateway

Today's New Testament reading: 1 Corinthians 5

1 It is actually reported that there is sexual immorality among you, and of a kind that even pagans do not tolerate: A man is sleeping with his father's wife. 2 And you are proud! Shouldn't you rather have gone into mourning and have put out of your fellowship the man who has been doing this? 3 For my part, even though I am not physically present, I am with you in spirit. As one who is present with you in this way, I have already passed judgment in the name of our Lord Jesus on the one who has been doing this. 4 So when you are assembled and I am with you in spirit, and the power of our Lord Jesus is present, 5 hand this man over to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, so that his spirit may be saved on the day of the Lord....

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Jemima

Scripture Reference - Job 42:14

Name Meaning - A little dove

Several commentators refer to Job's three daughters as those who were born to him after the return to his prosperity. The same is said of the seven sons born to him following his restoration to peace after severe trials, but are not the three daughters, "the three sisters" (1:4) who are assumed to have been destroyed when a hurricane destroyed their home? Although the sons and daughters were eating and drinking together before the storm struck (1:18), when it did fall upon the house we read that it "fell upon the young men , and they are dead" (1:19). There is no mention, however, of their "sisters" being killed with these young men. Are we justified in affirming that "the young men" who perished, were Job's sons? Then, seeing 1:2 is identical with 42:13 are we not right in affirming that the more Job had at his latter end refers only to the material blessings of sheep, camels, oxen and asses (42:12), and not to added children? If children were included in the statement "The Lord gave Job twice as much as he had before" (42:10), and his original seven sons and three daughters (1:2) were all killed by the hurricane that destroyed his house, livestock and servants, then we should read after his restoration to health and prosperity when his latter end was blessed more than his beginning - "He had also fourteen sons and six daughters." But the verse said, "He had (past tense) seven sons and three daughters." If all these whom the Lord gave were taken away, then it would be a most remarkable coincidence indeed if He gave Job at the end of his trials exactly the same number of children again. Certainly Job was blessed in this area also seeing he lived to love four generations springing from his original seven sons and three daughters. The writer adds to the original mention of three daughters, their names and facts about their beauty and inheritance. The sons' names are not mentioned.

Jemima, the name of the eldest daughter, is reckoned to have an Arabic association meaning "a little dove." Says Wilkinson, "the name, like those of her two sisters, is apparently due to some trivial occurrence, or experience, connected with early infancy...." The Septuagint renders Jemima as derived from the Hebrew word for "day," so that her name could mean "bright or beautiful as day." The three daughters were unsurpassed in their beauty in all the land (42:15). Jemama, a central province of Arabia, was so named by the Arabs, tradition says, in honor of Job's first daughter.

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Eutychus

[Eū'ty̆chŭs] - happy or fortunate. A young man of Troas who fell asleep during Paul's long sermon, fell off his window seat, broke his neck and was taken up as dead. Paul, however, revived him (Acts 20:7-12). Dr. Alexander Whyte speaks of Eutychus as "the father of all such as fall asleep under sermons."
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LeadershipBible-Header-550

Leadership Principle: Courage/Risk-taking

Read Joshua 1:1-9

Leaders need courage to make the tough decisions they're faced with every day. Joshua certainly faced such a crisis in his leadership role. Not only did he have to contend with the military powers rooted in the promised land, but he also had to face them with an untrained band of nomadic shepherds.

God realized Joshua's need for courage and gave him guidance that would strengthen his faith. First, he reminded Joshua of his faithfulness to keep all of his promises (vv. 3-6). God had pledged to give the land to his people and he would fulfill that pledge. Joshua's success didn't rest on a military strategy or well-trained army, but on the faithfulness of God. Second, God commanded Joshua to meditate on his words that Moses recorded in the five books of the Pentateuch (vv. 7-8). The "Book of the Law" would give the wisdom and encouragement Joshua would need to courageously lead the nation. Third, God promised to be personally present with Joshua (v. 9). No matter how intimidating the enemy or how rebellious the people, Joshua would not have to face them alone. God would always be at his side.

The same sources of courage that empowered Joshua are available today for any leader who will accept them. When faced with a risky business decision, the godly leader will look to God in prayer and to God's revealed Word for the perspective and courage needed to make the right choice. What situation are you now facing that requires courageous leadership and risk-taking? Let God's words to Josh ua supply you with the courage you need.

Courage/Risk-taking and Who God Is

Is there any such thing as "a sure thing"? In this world nothing appears to be certain; many of us come to discover that our sense of being in control is only an illusion-we cannot control the outcome of even a single day. There is only One who exercises sovereign control. Turn toHebrews 6:13-20 to look at the only real anchor for the soul.

This Week's Verse to Memorize

Joshua 1:9: Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORDyour God will be with you wherever you go.

Courage/Risk-taking and Who I Am

Leadership, by its very nature, inspires people to move in directions they would not otherwise have been willing to take. From time to time, good leadership requires excursions into unexplored territory, and draws on a leader's courage. Turn to Numbers 14:1-10 to see what happened when the Israelites encountered what they perceived to be an insurmountable obstacle. Their lack of courage demonstrates the high cost of failure.

Courage/Risk-taking and How It Works

Good leaders "fix what's broke." Great leaders "fix what (to others) isn't broke." Ezekiel confronted a highly successful king and told him his life, though successful, was immoral and needed fixing. Though his life was on the line, Ezekiel had courage to risk everything. Turn toEzekiel 28:6-10 to see why this prophet was better than a good leader.

Courage/Risk-taking and What I Do

When Jesus cleared the temple he gave a powerful example of both courage and risk-taking that came from the wellspring of deep conviction. Read the story in John 2:12-22, and also read as Henry Lee Allen explains in practical terms the value of calculated risk-taking.


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by Kenneth Boa
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August 22, 2011

Using our Words Wisely - Learning from the Best

Sharon Jaynes

Today's Truth

Freely you have received, freely give (Matthew 10:8).

Friend To Friend

This month, I've been examining the power of our words. So today, let's take a look at how Jesus used his words with his friends and let's learn from the best.

Jesus was the Master of believing the best in others and encouraging them to reach beyond their own limited view of their abilities. His disciples had witnessed Jesus command a lame man to walk, restore rotting skin to a leprous outcast, remove fever from Peter's mother with a touch, calm the raging storm, deliver a man from demons, and raise a little girl from the dead. But Jesus wanted more for his friends than to remain spectators in the gospel. He longed for them to be participants and partakers.

On a spring day, shortly after the Passover celebration, Jesus retreated to the north shore of the Sea of Galilee. However, crowds of people quickly pursued this miracle worker to witness his teaching and healing power. As the sun began to sink to the horizon, his disciples remarked that the people were growing hungry. He turned to Philip and asked, "Where shall we buy bread for these people to eat?" (John 6:5)

Jesus was not concerned with a lack of provisions. Rather He was taking this opportunity to invite the disciples to share in His ministry. He didn't need their help. However, he wanted to invite them to participate in a miracle to boost their confidence and faith. It was a gentle breeze in their sails of courage.

Philip was smart. In a matter of minutes he had calculated that it would take eight months' wages to feed the ten thousand people gathered on the hill. But Jesus wasn't looking for facts; He was looking for faith.

Andrew was practical. He canvassed the crowd to see what resources were available...five small barley cakes and two small fish. But Jesus wasn't looking for practical; he was looking for powerful.

Jesus told the disciples to have the crowd sit down in groups. Then he took the loaves and fish, blessed the food, and gave it to the disciples to distribute.

Did Jesus need the disciples' help? No. But He chose to include them in the miracle. He wanted them to see that He believed in them.

Now, let's fast forward in Jesus' ministry and his relationship with His disciples. During one of His last moments with the band of brothers, Jesus told them in no uncertain terms the potential He saw in them. Like a coach who believes in his team, Jesus rallied the twelve: "Go rather to the lost sheep of Israel. As you go, preach this message: `The kingdom of heaven is near.' Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, drive out demons. Freely you have received, freely give" (Matthew 10:6-8).

Before his ascension he gave them one last pep talk: "Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age" (Matthew 28:19-20). They had observed, learned, and practiced. Now it was time to step out into the world and participate in ministry without Jesus' physical presence. He believed in them and He let them know it.

"I tell you the truth," Jesus said, "anyone who has faith in me will do what I have been doing. He will do even greater things than these because I am going to the Father" (John 14:12). Oh my, did you notice? Jesus wasn't just talking about the twelve disciples. He was also talking about you! Jesus believes in you!

Jesus used his words to encourage his friends. I pray that we can follow His example and do the same.

Let's Pray

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for the gift of words. Help me to use my words to encourage my friends and family to be all that You have created them to be. Help me to learn from Jesus' example to expect the best from others and encourage them to participate with You in the ministry You have marked out for them.

In Jesus' Name,

Amen.

Now It's Your Turn

Go back and read the story of Jesus feeding the 5,000 recorded in John 6:1-15. Look for all the ways Jesus encouraged his disciples. Remember, he did not need their help but could have miraculously made the bread appear as God made the manna appear for the Israelites.

To comment on today's devotion, visitwww.sharonjaynes.com/blog

Here you can read comments from other Girlfriends as well!

More From The Girlfriends

Today's devotion is taken from Sharon's book The Power of a Woman's Words. There is great power in the words we speak and the people we impact. If you would like to learn more about how to harness this powerful resource and use your words to speak life to others, this book will be a great resource. Why not get a group of girlfriends together and learn about The Power of a Woman's Words together!

Seeking God?

Click here to find out more about

how to have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.

Girlfriends in God

P.O. Box 725

Matthews, NC 28106

info@girlfriendsingod.com
www.girlfriendsingod.com

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P31Header
Glynnis Whitwer

August 22, 2011

Planning to Rest
Glynnis Whitwer

"He said to them, 'This is what the LORD commanded: "Tomorrow is to be a day of sabbath rest, a holy sabbath to the LORD. So bake what you want to bake and boil what you want to boil. Save whatever is left and keep it until morning."'" Exodus 16:23 (NIV)

Preparing to go on vacation takes a lot of work. By the time I finish all the laundry, clean the house and get completely caught up at work before I can enjoy a break, I'm exhausted.

This year, my family vacation came two days after a huge deadline at work. By the time I locked the front door and turned towards the car, mental and physical fatigue overwhelmed me.

Once we arrived at our destination, I could have cried with relief. The months of planning and weeks of hectic last-minute preparation were worth it. After a few days of complete rest, I felt recharged and ready to go.

Although this pattern of planning before rest is common to holidays and vacations, it wasn't until recently I applied it to honoring the Sabbath. Every week I'm faced with the opportunity to rest. Actually it's more than an opportunity, it's a commandment from the Lord. But instead of planning for it to happen, I usually slip into a day of work.

For some reason, I expect a day of rest to happen with no effort. But it doesn't. The truth is I need to rethink how I approach God's commandment to rest. It requires intention for it to happen, or I'll just use it as a catch-up day.

For years God has been gently convicting me of dis-honoring His day. Although I know it's one of the Ten Commandments, I've prioritized work over obedience too many times.

I've even tried to redefine work and call it rest, as if that could fool God. The truth is, I've created a seven-day workweek, and neglected to plan for rest.

It's easy to find excuses not to rest: I'm a mom of five children, my work is ministry-related, or it's just a few e-mails. Those excuses sound weak to my ears when weighed against God's request to obey Him in something that's pleasurable and for my own good.

The Sabbath is a gift from a loving heavenly Father to His children. It is a day to breathe a sigh of relief, and rest from our labors. It is a day to soak in the companionship of those we love. My spirit, mind and body long for rest. To reject this healing gift hurts me and those I love. It also sets me in direct disobedience to God.

Given my tendency towards work, I have to plan for a day of Sabbath rest to happen. It will take me spreading housework throughout the week, finishing the laundry a day early and preparing meals in advance. It will take a weekly plan. But when I make the Sabbath a priority, I'm obeying one of God's caring commandments and teaching my children to do the same.

And when my thirsty soul tastes the refreshment of rest, I realize why God asks me to honor His day.

Dear Lord, forgive me for the times I have made excuses and dishonored Your Sabbath. I know You gave me this day as a gift, and I have often rejected it in favor of my own way. Help me to plan the rest of the week wisely so that I'm prepared for a day of rest. Thank You for forgiving me and giving me another chance to obey You. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

Related Resources:
Visit Glynnis' blog for some practical tips on managing your time and to enter to win a copy of her new book, I Used to Be So Organized.

We are celebrating the release of Glynnis' newest book, I Used to Be So Organized.. If you'd like to find out more or order a copy, click here.

When you purchase resources through Proverbs 31 Ministries, you touch eternity because your purchase supports the many areas of hope-giving ministry we provide at no cost. We wish we could, but we simply can't compete with prices offered by huge online warehouses. Therefore, we are extremely grateful for each and every purchase you make with us. Thank you!

Application Steps:
What practices can you implement in your life this week to allow you to take a Sabbath rest?

Reflections:
What benefit does rest bring to me, mentally, physically and spiritually?

What are common reasons I neglect to honor the Sabbath?

Power Verses:
Genesis 2:3, "Then God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it he rested from all the work of creating that he had done." (NIV)

Ezekiel 20:11-12, "I gave them my decrees and made known to them my laws, by which the person who obeys them will live. Also I gave them my Sabbaths as a sign between us, so they would know that I the LORD made them holy." (NIV)

Matthew 11:28-29, "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 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." (NIV)

© 2011 by Glynnis Whitwer. All rights reserved.

Proverbs 31 Ministries
616-G Matthews-Mint Hill Road
Matthews, NC 28105
www.Proverbs31.org

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