“Divine Suggestions?” December 9

 

Divine Suggestions? #WordofGod #Bible #commands #principles #sanctityoflife #unbornbabyHow do you view the Word of God? As the commands and revelation of the Creator of heaven and earth or is it merely “interesting” to you … one more opinion in a list of options for making decisions and solving life’s problems? Is it full of commands and principles to live by or merely divine suggestions? Is it a standard or the standard by which you weigh everything?

Before you answer … you might ask yourself if, when talking about some Biblical command or principle, you’ve ever said:

  • I tried that, it just didn’t work.
  • Well, I just believe …
  • I know what the Bible says, but …
  • This is almost 2018.
  • We live in a different world.

As my husband says, “Amen” or “Oh! Me!”  Continue reading

“Wish You Could Share the Gospel without Fear?” December 8

 

Wish You Could Share the Gospel without Fear? #gospel #reasonfortheseason #JesusChrist #evangelism #Christmas

Do you find yourself complaining that Christ has been removed from much that goes on this season? Protests against hymns and prayers in schools. Merry Christmas replaced with Happy Holidays. Too much emphasis on buying and a gimme-gimme attitude.

But what are you and I doing to shine the light of Christ and share the reason this season exists? Are we so focused on long lines and long to-do lists that we fail to share the most important thing … the Gospel of Jesus Christ?

Does sharing the gospel strike fear in your heart? Check out today’s post for one of the best resources I’ve found for sharing our faith.

And what about our interaction with other believers? Have we fallen into some of the world’s concepts about love and tolerance? How do passages like Galatians 6.1-2 and Ezekiel 33.1-6 make it clear that tolerance is not always loving?

Also read about God’s promises to Israel, the futility of running from God, and how a fool and his words get into trouble.  Continue reading

“Do You Think You Are Saved?” December 7

 

Do You Think You Are Saved? #salvation #Christianity #eternalsecurity #assurance of salvation“Not everyone who calls out to me, ‘Lord! Lord!’ will enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Only those who actually do the will of my Father in heaven will enter. On judgment day many will say to me, ‘Lord! Lord! We prophesied in your name and cast out demons in your name and performed many miracles in your name.’ But I will reply, ‘I never knew you. Get away from me, you who break God’s laws.’” (Matthew 7.21-23, NLT).

Strong words! What did Jesus mean? How can we know that we won’t hear those terrible words, “I never knew you”?  Continue reading

“Could We Turn the World Upside Down?” December 6

 

Could We Turn the World Upside Down? #evangelism #discipleship #consequences In the US (and many other countries), we have largely turned away from the God of the Bible and look at the consequences! It has affected education, politics, business, family life and more. Lawlessness is at an all-time high and, if that’s not bad enough, we continue to see a rise in terrorism around the world and here at home. But, could we, like a handful of faithful men and women in the first century, turn the world upside down?  Continue reading

“Are You Growing in Christ?” December 5

 

Are you growing in Christ? - Are you growing in Christ? While we don’t earn God’s love through good works or stay in His graces because of them, a life that has truly been changed will produce different fruit. In fact, Jesus said, you will know a tree by its fruit (<a class="bible-gateway" href="http://biblegateway.com/passage/?search=%26quot%3BLk.&version=NIV" onclick="biblegwlinkpop(this.href,'"Lk.',800,950);return false;" target="_blank">"Lk.</a>). The amount and quality of our fruit is often a good indication of our spiritual maturity. Today's New Testament reading talks about some of that fruit. Are you growing in Christ? While we don’t earn God’s love through good works or stay in His graces because of them, a life that has truly been changed will produce different fruit. In fact, Jesus said, you will know a tree by its fruit (Lk. 6.44). The amount and quality of our fruit is often a good indication of our spiritual maturity. Today’s New Testament reading talks about some of that fruit.  Continue reading

“The Rise of Evil, Prophecy, Comfort & Eternity” December 4

 

The Rise of EvilThe rise of evil today is unprecedented. All we need to do in turn on the news: mass shootings, terrorist attacks, violent protests, murder, sex trafficking, child pornography and more. Could there be any connection to this rise in evil and the rejection of God’s law in our individual lives and as a nation?

Daniel saw the rise of evil in his time as pagan kings and others tried to destroy the people of God and their faith in Him. And God gave him a vision of the calamities that were yet to come on future generations. These prophecies were so accurate and detailed that people have tried to use their accuracy to discredit them, saying they must have been written after the fact.

Finally, God gave Daniel a beautiful hope-filled promise, the same one we need to hold onto as we see the rise of evil all around us.  Continue reading

“Prayer: Ushering in the Promises of God” December 3

 

Prayer: Ushering in the Promises of God #prayer #promises of God #revivalAre you involved in what God is doing in the earth today? Are you praying fervently for God’s will and for revival in the hearts of His children? Are you praying for the unsaved and for our leaders? Or could you be a Christian fatalist passively waiting for God to do what He’ll do?

Also read about praying for our enemies, the result of not parenting God’s way, and the importance of walking in the light.  Continue reading

“How Blameshifting Leads to Despair” December 2

 

How Blameshifting Leads to Despair - #blameshifting #poverty #sin Blameshifting ... believing we are merely the victim of chance, circumstances, biology, or the actions of others can lead to hopelessness and despair.Blameshifting … believing we are merely the victim of chance, circumstances, biology, or the actions of others can lead to hopelessness and despair. How can we help others and ourselves respond in ways that are pleasing to God and lead to peace, joy, blessings, and genuine life change?

Also read about Daniel’s incredible prophecies, the challenges of praising God in the midst of life in a fallen world, and see another example of how the Old Testament and the New fit together in one story … God’s story.  Continue reading

Daily Bible & Journal Giveaway

 

The holidays are just around the corner and the new year will be on us before we know it. What will you do to make Bible reading and prayer an ongoing habit in the coming year? I’d like to encourage you to set a goal to read through the Bible and to sign up for my daily encouragement. This year I’ll be adding Scripture-based prayers to each day’s post. If you sign up before December 15 you’ll have a chance to win a MacArthur Daily Bible and a journal to record your thoughts and those Scripture-based prayers. Email subscribers will also be automatically entered into a drawing for monthly giveaways throughout 2018.

I hope you’ll sign up for my daily email. It can serve as a gentle reminder to stay on track. I try to make comments that are relevant to the daily struggles and questions that I hear in my counseling and discipleship ministries.

Start today so you can begin the habit and it will be a regular part of your day come January.

You can also follow me on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, or Google+. Just click on the social media icons. But nothing replaces having the daily devotion pop up in your inbox each day. It, usually (once in a while life gets in the way), goes out at 3 a.m. MST, so it’s there for early risers no matter what time zone you’re in.

So will you join me and, possibly, encourage someone else to do the same. (Why not email or call them right now?) Let’s get ready and grow in our relationship with Him together.

Read more about how we’ll be Praying through the Bible this year.

 

Daily Bible & Journal Giveaway #giveaways #Bible #journal

 

Blessings,
Donna


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“Handwriting on the Wall: The Party’s Over!” December 1

 

Handwriting on the Wall: The Party's Over! - Can you imagine the scene at the company Christmas party if a disjointed man’s hand suddenly appeared and began to write on the wall? That was the scene at Belshazzar’s bash! God was letting him know "the party's over"! What does that mean for our nation and the culture we live in? God is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Heb. 13.8). God has been patient and merciful to us, but He will judge our nation as a whole. In fact, the free fall in morality probably means that judgment is well underway (Rom. 1.18-32). And on an individual basis, that judgment will happen, as well. Each of us will stand before one of two judgments (2 Cor. 5.10; Rev, 20.11) and give an account. The biggest questions will be: How did we respond to the gospel and was Jesus truly Lord of our lives? Our New Testament reading warns us of judgment against false teachers whose biggest lies have to do with Jesus, especially about who He is. Cults, false religions and false teachers always deny His deity, His virgin birth, His eternal nature, His Lordship, or some other characteristic of His nature. Peter also warns us against believing and following false teachers.Handwriting on the wall: Can you imagine the scene at the company Christmas party if a disjointed man’s hand suddenly appeared and began to write on the wall? That was the scene at Belshazzar’s bash! God was letting him know “the party’s over”!

What does that mean for our nation and the culture we live in?

God is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Heb. 13.8). God has been patient and merciful to us, but He will judge our nation as a whole. In fact, the free fall in morality probably means that judgment is well underway (Rom. 1.18-32).

And on an individual basis, that judgment will happen, as well. Each of us will stand before one of two judgments (2 Cor. 5.10; Rev, 20.11) and give an account. The biggest questions will be: How did we respond to the gospel and was Jesus truly Lord of our lives?

Our New Testament reading warns us of judgment against false teachers whose biggest lies have to do with Jesus, especially about who He is. Cults, false religions, and false teachers always deny His deity, His virgin birth, His eternal nature, His Lordship, or some other characteristic of His nature.

Peter also warns us against believing and following false teachers.

“But there were also false prophets among the people, even as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Lord who bought them, and bring on themselves swift destruction. And many will follow their destructive ways, because of whom the way of truth will be blasphemed” (2 Pet. 2.1-2).

Continue reading