After You

Is not the whole land before thee? separate thyself, I pray thee, from me: if thou wilt take the left hand, then I will go to the right; or if thou depart to the right hand, then I will go to the left. (Genesis 13:9) 
 
In some cultures a younger person is expected to permit his elder to enter a room first. In others, the most important or highest ranking individual enters first. No matter what our traditions, there are times when we find it difficult to allow someone to choose first on important matters, especially when that privilege rightfully belongs to us. 
 
Abram (later called Abraham) and his nephew Lot had so many flocks, herds, and tents that the land could not support both of them as they traveled together. To avoid conflict, Abram suggested they part company and generously gave Lot first choice of the land. His nephew took the fertile Jordan Valley, leaving Abram with the less desirable land. 
 
Abram did not insist on his rights as the elder in this situation but trusted his future to God. “And Abram said unto Lot, Let there be no strife, I pray thee, between me and thee, and between my herdmen and thy herdmen; for we be brethren. Is not the whole land before thee? separate thyself, I pray thee, from me: if thou wilt take the left hand, then I will go to the right; or if thou depart to the right hand, then I will go to the left” (Gen. 13:8–9). Lot’s choice eventually led to dire consequences for his entire family (see Gen. 19). 
 
Today, as we face choices of many kinds, we can trust our Father to guide us in His way. He has promised to care for us. He will always give us what we need. 
 
Father, Your unfailing love and faithfulness guide us in every choice we make. May our lives speak well of You and honor You today. Amen.  
 
After reading this devotion I pray you are encouraged in knowing and being reminded that God always gives His best to those who leave the choice with Him. 
 
Have a beautiful and uplifting day in The Lord! 
 
Today’s Reading is 1 Corinthians 2:9


The Power of Trusting The Lord with All Your Heart

Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. (Proverbs 3:5-6) 
 
If the future feels uncertain right now, and worry keeps occupying too much room in your heart, in your mind, remember this: God is already in all of our tomorrows. He knows our way, and He has a plan. And we can be assured it’s always the best one for us. 
 
God never asks us to figure it all out on our own. He just asks us to trust Him, to recognize His leadership and Sovereignty in our lives. And He promises to make our pathways straight. 
 
– “Trust (be confident in, be bold, be secure) 
 
– in the Lord with all thine heart (seat of emotions, inclinations, mind, soul), 
 
– and lean not (trust, support) 
 
– unto thine own understanding (discernment). 
 
– In all thy ways acknowledge him (know, recognize), 
 
– and he shall direct thy paths (pleasing, right, smooth).” Proverbs 3:5-6 
 
We may not always see what’s ahead, but He does. 
 
There’s great power in trusting Him. For it clears the way for our security to be based solely on Him, not on our circumstances, or other people, not on ourselves, or our own ways of thinking. 
 
He is faithful to lead us and He sees the big picture. He brings clarity and light through foggy times. He knows what’s around the other side of the bend where we can’t fully see. His timing is perfect even when we start to feel like we’ve been forgotten. No matter how we feel or what our current situation may be, we can be confident that God’s Presence will go before us, paving out pathways, guiding and guarding our steps. 
 
Keep choosing trust. Let go of worry, hold on to Him. 
 
What do you need to trust God with today? Ask Him to help you guard and protect your heart from worry or trying to figure out everything on our own. Pray for His Spirit to fill you afresh and give you wisdom to hold on to His Truth. 
 
I was blessed by this devotion today. I pray there are others who needed to be reminded of this scripture today as well. Have confidence in God, trust Him with ALL your heart! He will never fail you. 
 
Have a beautiful and uplifting day in The Lord! 
 
Today’s Reading is Proverbs 3:5-6


Being Consumed

When I kept silence, my bones waxed old through my roaring all the day long. (Psalm 32:3) 
 
In his book The Call, Os Guinness describes a moment when Winston Churchill, on holiday with friends in the south of France, sat by the fireplace to warm himself on a cold night. Gazing at the fire, the former prime minister saw pine logs “crackling, hissing, and spitting as they burned. Suddenly, his familiar voice growled, ‘I know why logs spit. I know what it is to be consumed.’’
 
Difficulties, despair, dangers, distress, and the results of our own wrongdoings can all feel consuming. Circumstances slowly drain our hearts of joy and peace. When David experienced the consuming consequences of his own sinful choices, he wrote, “When I kept silence, my bones waxed old through my roaring all the day long.For day and night thy hand was heavy upon me: my moisture is turned into the drought of summer. Selah” (Psalm 32:3–4). 
 
In such difficult times, where do we turn for help? For hope? Paul, whose experiences were filled with ministry burdens and brokenness, wrote, “We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair;Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed” (2 Corinthians 4:8–9). 
 
How does that work? As we rest in Jesus, the Good Shepherd restores our souls (Psalm 23:3) and strengthens us for the next step of our journey. He promises to walk that journey with us every step of the way (Hebrews 13:5). 
 
What are some of the consuming struggles you’ve experienced? How did you respond? How did God meet you in those difficult times? 
 
This devotion blessed me. May this be our prayer today, Father, give me the strength to endure the hardships of this day, and the hope of Christ for the eternal tomorrow You have promised. Amen. He is forever faithful. 
 
Have a beautiful and uplifting day in The Lord! 
 
Today’s Reading is Matthew 11:28


Seek God’s Wisdom

The Lord looked down from heaven upon the children of men, to see if there were any that did understand, and seek God. (Psalm 14:2) 
 
Do we understand the ways of God? Understanding God is different than believing in God. To understand means that we can come into alignment by acknowledging the decisions God makes on our behalf. We do not have to agree with the decision but because we understand that God’s ways are higher than ours are, we can yield to Him. At that point, we show our trust in His ways as we continue to seek and submit to His will. 
 
As a parent, I have been challenged to explain “why” I am making a certain decision. If my decision pleases my children, no discussion is necessary. However, if I disagree, I am sought out to discuss and debate why my choices did not match their hearts’ desire. As a parent, I have the right to make final decisions as much as I have the right to explain or not explain the factors that went into making those decisions. My children then have the right to agree or disagree with my decisions but what a joy it is when they understand and accept them as is. 
 
God wants a relationship with us. As our Heavenly Father, He knows what is best for us. He is more than willing to reveal Himself to those who seek Him. God does not want us to just believe in Him but to understand Him as well. God has not hidden Himself from us. He has given us His Son, Jesus, His Word, and His Spirit. 
 
The Spirit of God intercedes for us, convicts our hearts and leads us into all truth. We have the opportunity to seek God and to find Him. But we also have the ability to understand Him as we continue to choose to read the Bible, pray and submit to the circumstances that He has allowed us to encounter in our lives. 
 
If you are struggling with understanding why God is allowing certain circumstances to continue in your life, seek Him for wisdom. James 1 tells us that anyone who is lacking in wisdom should ask God for it because God will give liberally to all that ask. But when God answers, believe that answer and do not doubt. Doubting only leads us to becoming double minded. Double mindedness is a worse state than questioning God’s decisions in the first place. And remember, God is looking down from Heaven to see if we understand and seek after Him. 
 
After reading this I was instantly reminded of today scripture, Luke 1:37, For with God nothing shall be impossible. How wonderful is that, it doesn’t mean everything will go our way as today’s devotion says but it’s in trusting His answer and not doubting Him. Remember, For His thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways His ways. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are His ways higher than your ways, and His thoughts than your thoughts. (Isaiah 55:8-9) Trust Him and seek His wisdom. 
 
Have a beautiful day in The Lord! 
 
Today’s Reading is Luke 1:37


Step into New Land

Now the Lord had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto a land that I will shew thee: And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing: And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed. So Abram departed, as the Lord had spoken unto him; and Lot went with him: and Abram was seventy and five years old when he departed out of Haran. And Abram took Sarai his wife, and Lot his brother’s son, and all their substance that they had gathered, and the souls that they had gotten in Haran; and they went forth to go into the land of Canaan; and into the land of Canaan they came. (Genesis 12:1-5) 
 
The Lord called Abram out. He told him to leave his country, not just his home, but his country. God told Abram to leave his family and head towards a new land. Can we begin to imagine how Abram must have felt? I wonder if his family thought he was crazy. Let’s see now–you are going to leave your home, family, country and head to a land that you have not seen yet? Abram did leave his home and country behind and went as the Lord directed him. Abram was a man of great faith. He believed in the promises of God and it was accounted to him as righteousness. 
 
In the New Testament, Jesus told his disciples a similar message when he said, “Follow Me.” To follow Jesus meant leaving everything else behind, including homes and families. Some did and some did not. The same is true today. How many of us are truly willing to forsake all for the gospel of Jesus Christ? Do we really have to go to such extremes in this day and age? In our hearts, we must answer those questions. Despite our behaviors and outward appearances, God knows our hearts. If we are willing to surrender all to Jesus, the Lord will do the rest. 
 
Think upon these verses today. Maybe God has a new land that awaits you. Without a doubt, God has blessings planned for your life, planned from before you were born. Are you willing to step out of your comfort zone? If so, this could be the step that changes your life in amazing ways. 
 
Today’s devotion blessed me. Maybe you don’t feel God is calling you to leave your country but instead calling you in a different direction outside of your comfort zone, be willing, obey, and watch what God will do through you and for you in amazing ways. I am reminded of yet another old hymn, All to Jesus I surrender, All to Him I freely give; I will ever love and trust Him, In His presence daily live. I surrender all, I surrender all. All to Thee, my Blessed Savior, I surrender all. A simple song yet so powerful. If we would only live each and every day surrendering all to Him, we wouldn’t live in fear, worry or anxiety. You might ask, is it truly that simple, and the answer is yes. Surrender all to Him and step out in faith believing that He will catch you if you fall and He will be there every step of the way. Just obey and step out in faith believing. 
 
Have a beautiful day in The Lord! 
 
Today’s Reading is 1 Peter 5:10


Blessing in the Mess

Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ. (Philippians 1:6) 
 
I got myself into this mess, so I’d better get myself out, I sometimes find myself thinking.  Although I believe in a God of grace, I’m still prone to act as if His help is available only when I deserve it. 
 
God’s first encounter with Jacob is a beautiful illustration of how untrue this is. 
 
Jacob had spent a lifetime trying to alter his destiny. He’d been born second at a time when firstborn sons typically received their father’s blessing—believed to guarantee future prosperity. 
 
So Jacob decided to do whatever it would take to get his father’s blessing anyway. Eventually, he succeeded—through deceit—obtaining the blessing intended for his brother (Genesis 27:19–29). 
 
But the price was a divided family, as Jacob fled from his furious brother (vv. 41–43). As night descended (28:11), Jacob must have felt as far from a life of blessing as ever. 
 
But it was there, leaving behind a trail of deception, that Jacob met God. God showed him he didn’t need desperate schemes to be blessed; he already was. His destiny—a purpose far greater than material prosperity (v. 14)—was held securely by the One who would never leave him (v. 15). 
 
It was a lesson Jacob would spend his whole life learning. 
 
And so will we. No matter how many regrets we carry or how distant God seems, He is still there—gently guiding us out of our mess into His blessing. 
 
Lord, so often we feel trapped by our mistakes, thinking there’s no future left for us. Remind us that you are the God of Jacob, the God who will never give up on Your purposes for us. Amen. 
 
When I read this devotion I felt it needed to be shared. So often we allow the enemy to plant seeds of doubt and self defeat within us and we stay surrounded by the darkness but that’s not God’s plan for our lives, no matter who you are or what you have done, there is hope, there is light and you are never to far from God’s reach. For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast (Ephesians 2:8-9). God’s Grace is immeasurable, His Mercy is inexhaustible, His Peace is inexpressible. Always remember, In God’s garden of grace, even a broken tree can bear fruit. God never gives up on His love and purpose for our lives. 
 
Have a beautiful day in The Lord! 
 
Today’s Reading is Isaiah 41:10 


Lift Up Your Eyes

I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. My help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth. He will not suffer thy foot to be moved: he that keepeth thee will not slumber. Behold, he that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep. The Lord is thy keeper: the Lord is thy shade upon thy right hand. The sun shall not smite thee by day, nor the moon by night. The Lord shall preserve thee from all evil: he shall preserve thy soul. The Lord shall preserve thy going out and thy coming in from this time forth, and even for evermore. (Psalm 121:1-8) 
 
Today’s psalm is one of my favorites. I read it and meditate on the words when I need encouragement from the Lord. Are you in need of encouragement today? Do you feel as if trouble surrounds you? Maybe you feel as if the weight of the world is on your shoulders. Let’s be encouraged together as we look at what these verses are saying. First of all, we need to look up and “lift up” our eyes to the hills. We need to look up at the Lord and believe that He is coming to help us. Acknowledge that our Lord is the One who made heaven and earth with amazing power and majesty. He is strong enough to help us. I love the verse that says He “shall neither slumber nor sleep.” Our Lord is watching over us constantly. He is our keeper. 
 
This message is not just for today but also for eternity. He preserves our soul and protects us from all evil. He preserves our every move and keeps watch over us everywhere that we go. Because of His Son, Jesus Christ, all who believe in Him are preserved for eternity in heaven. Some days seem longer than others here on earth, but be encouraged and know that the Lord of heaven and earth has His eyes upon you every moment of every day. Take comfort in the words of this psalm and meditate on it throughout times of trouble. Consider these precious words as promises from God, and trust that He always keeps His promises. 
 
Be encouraged and uplifted by these words today and don’t allow the enemy to feed you lies that you have been defeated. You are an overcomer, trust Him for His promises. For we walk by faith, not by sight (2 Cor. 5:7).
 
Have a beautiful day in The Lord! 
 
Today’s Reading is Titus 2:11-12


Too Hard for The Lord?

And the Lord said unto Abraham, Wherefore did Sarah laugh, saying, Shall I of a surety bear a child, which am old? Is any thing too hard for the Lord? At the time appointed I will return unto thee, according to the time of life, and Sarah shall have a son. (Genesis 18:13-14) 
 
Abraham was 100 years old and Sarah was 90 years old when Isaac was born. Both Abraham and Sarah were well past child bearing age. Most likely, they could not imagine having a baby at such an old age, but God had a different plan. The Lord knew the exact time in which Sarah would have Isaac and it would clearly be a miraculous blessing to her life. Throughout the years, as the Lord kept telling Abraham of this promise, Abraham kept believing and waiting on the promise to be fulfilled. Twenty-four years after God first promised an heir to Abraham, three men showed up at Abraham’s door. The Lord was one of the three and He again restated His promise that they will bring forth a son, a baby boy. Sarah reacted by laughing. The Lord responded with a question: “Is anything too hard for the Lord?” 
 
Abraham was a man of faith. God said it and Abraham believed what God said. Simple, pure, powerful faith. Sarah believed Abraham and trusted his words but when the Lord showed up, she lacked in her faith to believe. She even laughed at what God said. For us, sometimes it is easier for us to believe a person or to believe in a person than to trust in God. If God gives us a promise we can have a hard time trying to work it out ourselves. The hardest part is waiting on the Lord to fulfill it. We wait, we wonder and sometimes we worry but God is always faithful to keep His promises. Nothing is too hard for the Lord. Nothing. If He says it, then He will do it. 
 
I pray after reading this devotion you walk away feeling uplifted and empowered by the Holy Spirit. We must strive to be men and women of faith. My prayer today is that we trust Him for his promises no matter the wait and that we truly realize no thing is too hard for The Lord, if He says it, He will do it. Simple, pure, powerful faith. 
 
Have a beautiful day in The Lord! 
 
Today’s Reading is Galatians 6:7-8 


The Spiritual Fight Against Fear

And the Lord said unto Joshua, Fear not, neither be thou dismayed: take all the people of war with thee, and arise, go up to Ai: see, I have given into thy hand the king of Ai, and his people, and his city, and his land. (Joshua 8:1) 
 
The Lord told Joshua to go up to Ai. Actually, He was telling Joshua to go back to Ai. Since their earlier defeat at Ai, the men of Israel have been through a tragic experience because of the disobedience of one of their men, Achan. The punishment for Achan’s sin no doubt left a fearful impression upon all these men, who must now be prepared for war. So the Lord tells Joshua to “fear not, neither be thou dismayed.” In other words, He is saying, “Get back up and let’s take care of the business at hand. Let’s complete the job we have started.” The Lord promises to be with Joshua and his men, even going so far as to tell Joshua that He has already given the king, the people and the land into their hands. 
 
In the second part of this verse, the Lord tells Joshua to “see.” This is not a physical seeing because the battle has not yet even begun. This form of seeing requires spiritual eyes of faith to believe that what the Lord is saying is true, even though it cannot be physically seen at this time. For Joshua, this is an important step of faith. He has just been dealt a severe blow through what happened with Achan and now he must get back up. He must continue to fight. He must take each step with the Lord. 
 
God is faithful and just. He will complete the work He has started. Do not let fear, anger or discouragement keep you from following the Lord. Get back up, trust Him and take that next step. The enemy will do whatever he can to keep you from taking that next step, but the Lord will help you to “see” that He has delivered you and will lead you forward.
 
Have a beautiful day in The Lord! 
 
Today’s Reading is John 13:34-35


Rich Fulfillment

O bless our God, ye people, and make the voice of his praise to be heard: Which holdeth our soul in life, and suffereth not our feet to be moved. For thou, O God, hast proved us: thou hast tried us, as silver is tried. Thou broughtest us into the net; thou laidst affliction upon our loins. Thou hast caused men to ride over our heads; we went through fire and through water: but thou broughtest us out into a wealthy place. (Psalm 66:8-12) 
 
Sometimes we have the misconception that being a Christian should be all about riches, fulfillment and abundance. As Christians, we know the Lord personally and have been given everything we need for life and godliness. We are the children of the King. What else could we possibly need that He has not already given to us? But why do we face such hard trials in life? 
 
The Psalmist explains the real life version of receiving fulfillment. “For You, O God, have tested us,” God tests the hearts and intents of His people. He allows trying circumstances to squeeze us: As if we are “in a net”; we carry affliction “on our backs”, often while submitting to others whose motives and intentions are wrong. God brings us through terribly trying situations to test and grow our faith in Him. 
 
These trials are confusing and difficult. But we can we see God’s love and care through them because when we have come through the fires of this life, and walked through the tests and trials, the crown of eternal life awaits us. Fulfillment and abundance have to do with the victory in overcoming the most terrible trials. That satisfaction comes when we know that we are still with the Lord regardless of the circumstances. There is a place of rich fulfillment and abundance on the other side of the tests. All the riches of the world cannot be compared with the love, joy and peace we get from God. Read through Psalm 66 and really praise the Lord for the trials of life. Praise and worship brings the greatest fulfillment and abundance of them all. 
 
When I read this today it blessed me. No matter what we face we must truly believe, God’s got this! Don’t allow the circumstances to overwhelm you or dictate your victory. Commit every situation to God and trust Him for the outcome. 
 
Have a beautiful day in The Lord! 
 
Today’s Reading is 2 Timothy 3:16-17