Monday, January 15, 2018

The Daily Readings for MONDAY, January 15, 2018

Nicodemus Visits Jesus
Jesus teaches of being "born again"
John 3:1-15
Daily Readings

Genesis 8:6-22
At the end of forty days Noah opened the window of the ark that he had made and sent out the raven; and it went to and fro until the waters were dried up from the earth. Then he sent out the dove from him, to see if the waters had subsided from the face of the ground; but the dove found no place to set its foot, and it returned to him to the ark, for the waters were still on the face of the whole earth. So he put out his hand and took it and brought it into the ark with him. He waited another seven days, and again he sent out the dove from the ark; and the dove came back to him in the evening, and there in its beak was a freshly plucked olive leaf; so Noah knew that the waters had subsided from the earth. Then he waited another seven days, and sent out the dove; and it did not return to him any more. In the six hundred first year, in the first month, the first day of the month, the waters were dried up from the earth; and Noah removed the covering of the ark, and looked, and saw that the face of the ground was drying. In the second month, on the twenty-seventh day of the month, the earth was dry. Then God said to Noah, "Go out of the ark, you and your wife, and your sons and your sons' wives with you. Bring out with you every living thing that is with you of all flesh-- birds and animals and every creeping thing that creeps on the earth-- so that they may abound on the earth, and be fruitful and multiply on the earth." So Noah went out with his sons and his wife and his sons' wives. And every animal, every creeping thing, and every bird, everything that moves on the earth, went out of the ark by families. Then Noah built an altar to the LORD, and took of every clean animal and of every clean bird, and offered burnt offerings on the altar. And when the LORD smelled the pleasing odor, the LORD said in his heart, "I will never again curse the ground because of humankind, for the inclination of the human heart is evil from youth; nor will I ever again destroy every living creature as I have done. As long as the earth endures, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night, shall not cease."

Hebrews 4:14-5:6
Since, then, we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus, the Son of God, let us hold fast to our confession. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who in every respect has been tested as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore approach the throne of grace with boldness, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need. Every high priest chosen from among mortals is put in charge of things pertaining to God on their behalf, to offer gifts and sacrifices for sins. He is able to deal gently with the ignorant and wayward, since he himself is subject to weakness; and because of this he must offer sacrifice for his own sins as well as for those of the people. And one does not presume to take this honor, but takes it only when called by God, just as Aaron was. So also Christ did not glorify himself in becoming a high priest, but was appointed by the one who said to him, "You are my Son, today I have begotten you" as he says also in another place, "You are a priest forever, according to the order of Melchizedek."

John 2:23-3:15
When he was in Jerusalem during the Passover festival, many believed in his name because they saw the signs that he was doing. But Jesus on his part would not entrust himself to them, because he knew all people and needed no one to testify about anyone; for he himself knew what was in everyone. Now there was a Pharisee named Nicodemus, a leader of the Jews. He came to Jesus by night and said to him, "Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher who has come from God; for no one can do these signs that you do apart from the presence of God." Jesus answered him, "Very truly, I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God without being born from above." Nicodemus said to him, "How can anyone be born after having grown old? Can one enter a second time into the mother's womb and be born?" Jesus answered, "Very truly, I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God without being born of water and Spirit. What is born of the flesh is flesh, and what is born of the Spirit is spirit. Do not be astonished that I said to you, 'You must be born from above.' The wind blows where it chooses, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit." Nicodemus said to him, "How can these things be?" Jesus answered him, "Are you a teacher of Israel, and yet you do not understand these things? "Very truly, I tell you, we speak of what we know and testify to what we have seen; yet you do not receive our testimony. If I have told you about earthly things and you do not believe, how can you believe if I tell you about heavenly things? No one has ascended into heaven except the one who descended from heaven, the Son of Man. And just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.

New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. The New Revised Standard Version Bible may be quoted and/or reprinted up to and inclusive of five hundred (500) verses without express written permission of the publisher, provided the verses quoted do not amount to a complete book of the Bible or account for fifty percent (50%) of the total work in which they are quoted.

Martin Luther King, Jr., Civil Rights Leader and Martyr

Martin Luther King, 1964
Today we remember Martin Luther King, Jr., Civil Rights Leader and Martyr, January 15, 1929 – April 4, 1968.

Martin Luther King, Jr., was born in 1929, the grandson and son of Baptist preachers. After his education at Boston University, he became pastor of a Baptist church in Montgomery, Alabama. There he confronted the entrenched racism that pervaded much of the United States at that time.

In 1955 Rosa Parks famously refused to yield her seat on a bus to a white person. King joined with others in organizing the Montgomery bus boycott and became nationally prominent. In the following years, King traveled from city to city leading protests and demonstrations.

King's preaching was extraordinary in its impact. People of all races responded to King's vision of a nation in which everyone would behold others as children of God, not defined by race. His last Sunday sermon was given in Washington National Cathedral on March 31, 1968. A few days later, he traveled to Memphis to take part in a sanitation workers' strike. While in Memphis, he was assassinated.

King's relentless quest to share a vision for the kingdom of God was not just confined to race. He spoke about excess military expenditure and economic justice too. "Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere," he said.

Gracious God, may we share in the dream of Martin Luther King, Jr., that all races might live together in peace, and grant us courage to manifest that dream in our time; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Almighty God, by the hand of Moses your servant you led thy people out of slavery, and made them free at last: Grant that your Church, following the example of your prophet Martin Luther King, may resist oppression in the name of your love, and may strive to secure for all your children the blessed liberty of the Gospel of Jesus Christ; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.,_Jr.

Prayer of the Day for MONDAY, January 15, 2018

Heavenly Father, I thank you for my life and everything you have bestowed upon me and upon all people, this day and every day. I thank you for the good and bad, the understanding of forgiveness, and your holy power, without which we would have nothing. I thank you this day for all your blessings, your gifts, your never ending love for us. Although we all are sinners, I ask you to forgive me every day for what I might have done wrong, that I might not have noticed. Even though we all come short of the glory of God, I thank you for the sacrifice of your only son Jesus Christ for all our sins. You and only you know us Father and you know if our hearts are true. So once again, I thank you with all my heart and soul. In the name of Christ I pray,

Verse of the Day for MONDAY, January 15, 2018

John 16:33 (NIV) “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

Read all of John 16

Listen to John 16

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Morning Devotions with Cap'n Kenny - A Heavenly Perspective

A Heavenly Perspective

"I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world."
~ John 16:33 (NIV)

When Mary and Martha found out about how ill their brother, Lazarus, was, they sent word to Jesus and simply said, “Lord, the one you love is sick” (John 11:3). In other words, “Lord, remember us—Mary, Martha, and Lazarus here in Bethany? We’re Your friends. You hang out at our home whenever You’re in town. Remember Martha? She’s the one who makes those killer meals. Mary is the one who sits at Your feet. And Lazarus? He’s Your friend, Lord. Your friend is sick.”

They probably thought Jesus would just speak the word, and Lazarus would be healed instantaneously. Or perhaps He would rush back and lay His hand on Lazarus’ fevered brow.

Instead we read that Jesus delayed His arrival. In fact, when Jesus heard about Lazarus, He said, “This sickness will not end in death. No, it is for God’s glory so that God’s Son may be glorified through it” (verse 4). Although Jesus loved Mary, Martha, and Lazarus, He stayed where He was for the next two days.

You know the rest of the story. Jesus allowed Lazarus to die, but then He raised him from the dead. The point was that God wanted to bring greater glory to His name.

It is true that God loves us and works all things together for good. But the problem arises with our definition of how God should show that love and what we feel “good” ought to be in our lives. We think that good means no pain, no suffering, no hardship—that it means a problem-free life.

Our definition of good is what benefits us in the here and now, not in the by and by. We are interested in what will benefit us temporarily, but God is interested in what will benefit us eternally.
Heavenly Father, I thank you for my life and everything you have bestowed upon me and upon all people, this day and every day. I thank you for the good and bad, the understanding of forgiveness, and your holy power, without which we would have nothing. I thank you this day for all your blessings, your gifts, your never ending love for us. Although we all are sinners, I ask you to forgive me every day for what I might have done wrong, that I might not have noticed. Even though we all come short of the glory of God, I thank you for the sacrifice of your only son Jesus Christ for all our sins. You and only you know us Father and you know if our hearts are true. So once again, I thank you with all my heart and soul. In the name of Christ I pray, Amen.
In Jesus,
Cap'n Kenny

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Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
We equate good with a problem-free life. But is that reality?

Un Dia a la Vez - Él cambia nuestra tristeza

Él cambia nuestra tristeza

Sabemos que Dios dispone todas las cosas para el bien de quienes lo aman.
~ Romanos 8:28 (NVI)

Parece irónico decir que de lo malo que nos pasa en la vida Dios, en algún momento, lo cambiará para bien. Creo que no hay algo que cause más dolor que los resbalones, las equivocaciones o, como decimos, «las metiditas de pata». Debemos entender que una mala decisión nos puede cambiar la vida. Sin embargo, Dios perdona un error y nos da una nueva oportunidad si nos arrepentimos de corazón, aunque no logremos escapar de las consecuencias de lo que hacemos en la vida, sea bueno o malo.

Algunos aprenden de los errores y cambian de manera radical. Ese no fue mi caso. Cometía un error tras otro y Dios me daba nuevas oportunidades, pero volvía a fallar. Hasta que un día, Él tuvo que cambiar mi camino para enderezar mi corazón. De una relación extramatrimonial quedé embarazada y pasé uno de los momentos más difíciles de mi vida. Tuve que enfrentarme a Dios, a mis princesas, a los pastores y reconocer mi error y vivir las consecuencias. Así que perdí mi trabajo, nos abandonó el padre de mi hija y se lastimó mi testimonio. Por eso, tuve que volver a empezar desde cero.

No obstante, en esta etapa aprendí a conocer a Dios de otra manera. En medio del dolor, no me abandonó y dejó en mis manos una hermosísima responsabilidad: Mi princesa Anacristina que llenó mi corazón de felicidad. Vi cómo de una mala situación pasé a ser la madre más feliz y orgullosa de sus hijas. De modo que al poco tiempo, Dios me devolvió absolutamente todo. Volví a la radio, pero convertida en una nueva mujer. Por favor, ¡aprendamos de los errores!

Un Día a la Vez Copyright © by Claudia Pinzón

Standing Strong Through the Storm - NO WORRIES IN A YEAR OF DROUGHT


“But blessed is the one who trusts in the LORD, whose confidence is in him. They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream…It has no worries in a year of drought…”

Trees were not plentiful in Israel and most grew by sources of water like an oasis or a stream. Jeremiah’s simile indicates a person with confidence in the Lord is like a deep-rooted tree by the stream which has nothing to worry about even when a whole year goes by with no rain.

A young Christian boy in Iraq shares this insight after the bombing of his church in late 2010:

I always imagine having a special cape, like superman wears, as I run in and out of my sister’s bedroom. The cape is gold with red print just like the curtains in our dining room. I think of myself as a protector of the royal realm and my sister as a princess to guard—well, ok, when she isn’t making me mad.

I used to play outside, but when the war started we had to play inside all the time. When we do go outside we take the car, but I help my dad check under the car first for bombs. We are always checking things around the house and everyone is very nervous when we travel even short trips around the city. We even have some suitcases stuffed with things in case we have to leave in the middle of the night. I wonder if any of my toys will fit in those bags.

A really, really bad thing happened at our church and I lost a lot of my friends. They were all killed. I didn’t see it, but I heard most of the stories. I think lots of things will never be the same and that I need to take the role of protector and guardian of the realm. If I have this special cape I can protect my family.

At night before my sister goes to bed my parents pray with her. I can hear my sister now. She is praying, “God help that they don’t bomb another church and that there are no car bombs, stop the blood.” She has been very scared since the bad thing happened in the church and my mom often comes to her at night to pray with her again after nightmares. She didn’t used to have these things.

Then my dad comes to pray for me. He tells me that Jesus will take care of us and I mustn’t worry. He tells me that God even loves the people who hurt us. He tells me that Jesus is love - and that it is something like my special cape.

With confidence in the Lord, we can have no worries even when the drought lasts a year or more.

RESPONSE: Today I will place my trust and confidence only in God asking Him to bear my worries.

PRAYER: Lord, give courage, peace and confidence to those of our family living in areas of violence.

Women of the Bible - Hagar


Her name means: "Fugitive" or "Immigrant"

Her character: A foreigner and slave, Hagar let pride overtake her when she became Abraham's wife. A lonely woman with few resources, she suffered harsh punishment for her mistake. She obeyed God's voice as soon as she heard it and was given a promise that her son would become the father of a great nation.
Her sorrow: That she was taken from her homeland to become a slave in a foreign land, where she was mistreated for many years.
Her joy: To know that God cared, that he saw her suffering and heard her cry, and that he helped her when she needed him most.
Key Scriptures: Genesis 16; 21:8-21; Galatians 4:22-31

Her Story

An Egyptian slave and Sarah's bitter rival, Hagar still had one thing going for her that her mistress never enjoyed: a personal revelation of God, who lovingly intervened on her behalf, not once but twice. It happened when she was alone and afraid, without a shekel to her name—but that's getting ahead of the story.

You may remember that Abraham, whom we honor as the father of faith, showed little evidence of that faith when he and Sarah first entered Egypt to escape a famine in Canaan. Certain the Egyptians would kill him once they caught sight of his beautiful wife, he advised her to pose as his sister. Soon enough, Pharaoh added Sarah to his harem and rewarded Abraham with an abundance of camels, sheep, cattle, donkeys, and servants. But God punished Pharaoh for his unwitting error so effectively that, when he found out that Sarah was actually Abraham's wife, he ordered the two of them to leave Egypt with all their belongings. Possibly, Hagar was part of the booty Abraham and Sarah took with them—a gift they later regretted.

Still, of the three parties involved in the scheme to make Hagar a surrogate mother, she was perhaps the only innocent one, a slave with little power to resist. When Sarah told Abraham to sleep with her maid, she opened the door to spiritual catastrophe. As soon as Hagar discovered her pregnancy, she began lording it over her mistress, hardly a smart move for a young foreigner up against a woman entrenched in her husband's affections.

In fact, Sarah made life so difficult for Hagar that she fled into the desert, a desperate move for a pregnant woman who was so far from home. She hadn't gotten far before she heard a voice calling, "Hagar, servant of Sarai, where have you come from, and where are you going? Go back to your mistress and submit to her." But then, as if to sweeten the order, came a word of assurance: "You will have a son. You shall name him Ishmael, for the Lord has heard of your misery."

Remarkably, Hagar didn't argue but returned to Abraham and Sarah. Like a stream of water in the desert, God's word had penetrated the wilderness of her heart. Her bondage, her bitterness, her anxiety about the future—God had seen every bit of it. He knew about the child in her womb, naming him Ishmael, meaning "God Hears." In the years to come, whenever Hagar would hold her son close, watch him play, or worry about his future, she would remember that God was near, listening for the child's cry. Little wonder that she had responded to the voice in the desert by calling the Lord "the God who sees me."

Some sixteen years later, Hagar found herself once again in the wilderness, this time by force rather than by choice. In a crescendo of bitterness against her younger rival, Sarah had expelled Hagar and Ishmael from their home. Dying from thirst, Hagar placed her son under a bush and withdrew, unable to witness his agony.

Her weeping was soon broken by an angel's voice, "Do not be afraid; God has heard the boy crying as he lies there. Lift the boy up and take him by the hand, for I will make him into a great nation." With that, the angel of the Lord opened Hagar's eyes so that she discovered a well of water nearby that would save her son's life.

The last we see of Hagar, she is living in the Desert of Paran in the Sinai Peninsula, busy securing a wife, and, therefore, a future, for Ishmael. God had made a way in the wilderness for a single woman and her son, without friends, family, or resources to help her. He had seen, he had heard, and he had indeed been faithful.

Her Promise

A thin young woman sits huddled in the front seat of her car. She covers her ears to block out the sound of her little son as he whimpers with cold in the backseat. Her husband abandoned her and the boy two months before. Left without resources, she was soon turned out of her apartment. The car is now their only home. It has long since seen its last drop of gasoline, and its worn interior provides little protection from the winter winds outside.

This modern-day Hagar is no further from God's promises than was Hagar herself as she poured out her sorrow in the desert. God sees her heartache, just as he saw Hagar's. Though you may not be as desperate as Hagar or her modern counterpart, you may have experienced times in your life that made you fear for the future. Whether you are living in a wilderness of poverty or loneliness or sorrow, God's promises, love, and protection are just as available to you now as they were to Hagar.

Today's reading is a brief excerpt from Women of the Bible: A One-Year Devotional Study of Women in Scripture by Ann Spangler and Jean Syswerda (Zondervan). © 2010 by Ann Spangler. Used with permission. All rights reserved. Enjoy the complete book by purchasing your own copy at the Bible Gateway Store. The book's title must be included when sharing the above content on social media.

Girlfriends in God - Big Assignments begin with Tiny “Yeses”

Big Assignments begin with Tiny “Yeses”

Today’s Truth

His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things’.
~ Matthew 5:21 (NIV)

Friend to Friend

When people ask me how I got started in ministry, I tell them I started by writing for free publications for free for 10 years. This is not what most people want to hear.

When I tell them I started by folding newsletters in the den of my home for several years, they seem crestfallen.

When I tell them I started out by cleaning the bathrooms in our first little ministry office, they seem confused.

“No, I mean how did you get started writing and speaking?” they ask.

“I’m telling you,” I reply. “This is how I got started. Being faithful in the little things. By doing what God led me to do on any particular day.”

I never had a big ol’ dream to be a speaker and a writer, but that’s what God had planned for me. I just put one obedient foot in front of the other and that is where the path led.

We don’t obey God in the seemingly small assignments in order to get the bigger ones. However, God will never entrust someone with a big assignment who has not proved herself trustworthy in the small.

When God invites you to join Him in His work, what you do next reveals what you truly believe. If you trust Him completely and follow His lead in the great dance of obedience, then you will experience the spins, twirls, and lifts of the glory life Jesus came to give. If you decide to sit this one out because of fear, then the chairs along the wall are positioned just for you to sit and watch the less fearful wow the crowd. But know this: The band is playing your song.

When God extends His invitation to join Him in the divine dance of obedience, the time to accept is at that very moment. We have about 10 to 30 seconds before common sense talks us out of obeying God’s promptings. The time to act is as soon as you sense the Spirit calling you to move.

When my husband and I took ballroom dance classes (We called it Dancing with the Scars), I remember complaining to the dance instructor, “How many times are we going to have to go over the one-two-three-four of the foxtrot? I’m tired of making these little boxes. I want to move around the room! I want to dip and swirl!”

“As soon as you learn to follow your husband’s lead and master the basic steps,” she replied. Only then will we move on to fancier moves.”

As you live and move and have your being in Him, the places He will lead you will become more and more glorious as you learn to relinquish control and trust Him. Big assignments begin with a thousand tiny “yeses.” Small steps of obedience become beautiful sweeping moves of faith.

But first…you have to take the little steps.

Let’s Pray

Heavenly Father, forgive me for wanting the big assignments and not being faithful to do the seemingly smaller ones. Help me to remember that every time I obey You, even when the tasks seem insignificant, You smile and say, “Well done, My good and faithful servant.”
I love You,

Now It’s Your Turn

Read 1 Samuel 16 and note when David was anointed as king.

What did he do between 1 Samuel 16 and 1 Samuel 17? (Hint: Baa Baa)

What did David do between 1 Samuel 17 and 2 Samuel 2? Just scan the headings.

And as they say, “the rest is history.”

Are you ready to be used by God? If so, click over to my Facebook page and leave a comment that says, “I will be faithful in the little things!”

More from the Girlfriends

Do you find yourself longing to hear God’s voice—not as a once-in-a-lifetime experience but on a daily basis? Do you have a desire to see His fingerprints on the pages of your busy life? It is not a matter of does He speak, but will we listen. More than a “how to” book, Becoming a Woman Who Listens to God is a warm, fun, tender look at recognizing some of the wonderful and unexpected ways God reaches out to us with His love and presence. You will feel refreshed, reaffirmed, and renewed as you engage in listening to the One who loves to talk to you.

Seeking God?
Click HERE to find out more about how to have a personal
relationship with Jesus Christ.

Girlfriends in God

LHM Devotion - January 15, 2018 "Restoring Grandpa"

Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries

"Restoring Grandpa"

Jan. 15, 2018

It is good to give thanks to the Lord, to sing praises to Your Name, O Most High; to declare Your steadfast love in the morning, and Your faithfulness by night.
~ Psalm 92:1-2 (ESV)

People and nations can often copy the story which first appeared in Grimm's Fairy Tales.

The story tells of a father, mother, and son who lived with the grandfather. Now grandpa made it clear that everything he had should be thought of as their own. At first, the young family was most thankful. But then, as the years past, grandpa's presence in their lives became a burden, a nuisance, a disgrace, an embarrassment.

When friends came to call, grandpa was shuttled off to the upstairs; when conversation was made at the dinner table, grandpa was ignored. Finally, at one supper, grandpa, as he lifted the fork to his mouth, was bumped. The food fell off the fork, hit his shirt, and stained the table cloth.

Mother and father agreed grandpa should be moved away from the family dinner table.

And so it was. Grandpa was given a spot in the corner of the kitchen where he could sit on a stool and eat from a bowl. Even though he was mistreated, grandpa still loved his family and didn't complain. From a distance he sat in silence, watching his family eat his food, from his plates, in his kitchen. Then, one day, as the mother was bringing food to the table she tripped. Grandpa's plate went flying as he rose to catch her. With grandpa's food all over, his son shouted, "If you cannot eat better than a pig, then you shall eat like a pig!" And the son built a small wooden pig trough for his father. Grandpa was banished from the kitchen and moved to the front porch.

Things might have stayed that way if it were not for the day mother and father saw their son building something in the shed. When asked what he was doing the boy said, "I'm building a trough for you and mama. That way, someday, I can feed you the same way you feed Grandpa." Now, because this is one of Grimm's happy-ever-after fairy tales, the story ends with mother and father appreciating grandpa and restoring him to a place of honor.

Of course, as I say, this is a fairy tale, and fairy tales don't always translate into reality, do they?

The truth is like the parents in the story, many people and nations of the world have banished God to a corner or have put Him out on the porch. They want God out of the way so they can say they, not the Lord, are the providers of everything. Puffing up their chests, sticking out their chins, they proudly, and foolishly, say to all the world: "Look what we have done."

And, God -- like the grandfather in the story -- God waits patiently. He waits for people to realize the direction they are going is false and foolish. God waits patiently for that moment when nations and individuals will realize that on their own they can do nothing. God waits patiently for His people to see the Savior whose life was given as the sacrifice which forgives, restores, and recycles us.

God waits for us to see just how valuable He is.

THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, may we never take for ourselves the glory which belongs to You alone. Keep us humble and appreciative of Your many gifts, the most important of which is Your Son Jesus, our Lord. In His Name we pray. Amen.

Use these devotions in your newsletter and bulletin! Used by permission; all rights reserved by the Int'l LLL (LHM).
People and nations can often copy the story which first appeared in Grimm's Fairy Tales...

Devocional del CPTLN del 15 de Enero de 2018 "El desaliento"


"El desaliento"

15 de Enero de 2018

Pero eres tú quien me dio la vida, eres tú quien me infundió confianza desde que era un niño de pecho.
~ Salmo 22:9 (RVC)

Hace muchos años, el desaliento y la depresión eran compañeros constantes de un joven abogado. Llegó a caer en tan profunda oscuridad emocional, que sus amigos decidieron hacer desaparecer de su casa todos los cuchillos y las hojas de afeitar.

En su momento de mayor oscuridad, este abogado escribió: "Soy el hombre más miserable del mundo. No sé si algún día me mejoraré. Creo que ni siquiera lo merezco."

Después de un tiempo ese joven, Abraham Lincoln, superó el desaliento y llegó a un puesto de poder y autoridad. Por la gracia de Dios, Lincoln, al igual que Martin Luther King, Jr. cuyo cumpleaños celebramos hoy, se dedicó a mejorar la vida de los demás.

Pero eso no quiere decir que fuera inmune al desaliento.

No tengo dudas que usted también ha experimentado desaliento. Todos pasamos por momentos en los que parece que el mundo se nos viene abajo, y que nada sale como quisiéramos. Quizás hasta alguna vez hayamos jugado con la idea de dejar este 'valle de lágrimas'.

Si esta es una descripción de lo que usted siente en estos momentos, es hora que el Espíritu Santo le cambie la vida, ya sea a través de aconsejamiento o de confesión, o aclarándole la visión que tiene de lo que el Señor ha hecho por usted.

Preste atención a las personas que le rodean y verá que hay algunas que están dispuestas a ayudarle. Entre ellas se encuentra el mismo Dios. Él quiere que sepa que lo que está sufriendo sólo es pasajero. Es más, se lo garantiza con su promesa.

A través de Jesucristo Dios nos lleva de la desesperación a la victoria. Así fue para Lincoln, y que así sea también para usted.

ORACIÓN: Querido Señor, tú eres mi escudo y quien me reanima cuando estoy desalentado. Te doy gracias por la victoria que es mía a través de Jesucristo. En su nombre. Amén.

De una devoción escrita originalmente para "By the Way"

© Copyright 2018 Cristo Para Todas Las Naciones. Que a través de estos devocionales, la Palabra de Dios te refresque en tu diario caminar.

Notre Pain Quotidien - Rechercher l’unité

Rechercher l’unité

Lisez : Colossiens 3.9-17
La Bible en un an : Genèse 36 – 38 ; Matthieu 10.21-42

Il n’y a ici ni Grec ni Juif, ni circoncis ni incirconcis, ni barbare ni Scythe, ni esclave ni libre ; mais Christ est tout et en tous. (V. 11)

Durant ma jeunesse, dans les années 1950, je ne me suis jamais interrogé au sujet du racisme et de la ségrégation qui prévalaient tous les jours dans la ville où nous habitions. Dans les écoles, les restaurants, les transports publics et les quartiers, les gens à la peau de couleurs différentes étaient séparés.

Mon attitude a changé en 1968, quand j’ai commencé mon entraînement militaire de base dans l’armée américaine. Ma compagnie se composait de jeunes hommes issus de divers groupes culturels. Nous avons vite appris que nous devions nous comprendre et nous accepter les uns les autres, travailler ensemble et accomplir notre mission.

Lorsque Paul a écrit à l’Église de Colosses, il était bien conscient de la diversité de ses membres : « Il n’y a ici ni Grec ni Juif, ni circoncis ni incirconcis, ni barbare ni Scythe, ni esclave ni libre ; mais Christ est tout et en tous » (COL 3.11). Paul a exhorté ainsi ce groupe dont les différences superficielles comme profondes risquaient de facilement diviser les gens : « [Revêtez]‑vous d’entrailles de miséricorde, de bonté, d’humilité, de douceur, de patience » (V. 12). Et par‑dessus toutes ces vertus, il leur a demandé de se revêtir d’amour, « qui est le lien de la perfection » (V. 14).

Notre appel à mettre ces principes en pratique s’accomplit souvent progressivement, en recherchant l’amour, la compréhension, la paix et l’unité au sein du corps de Christ. Au cœur de toute notre merveilleuse diversité, aspirons à encore plus d’unité en Christ.

L’amour de Christ crée l’unité au sein de la diversité.

par David C. McCasland

© 2018 Ministères NPQ
Durant ma jeunesse, dans les années 1950, je ne me suis jamais interrogé au sujet du racisme et de la ségrégation qui prévalaient tous les jours dans la ville où nous habitions.