Luke 14:18 -20
And they all with one consent began to make excuse. The first said unto him, I have bought a piece of ground, and I must needs go and see it: I pray thee have me excused. And another said, I have bought five yoke of oxen, and I go to prove them: I pray thee have me excused. And another said, I have married a wife, and therefore I cannot come.
Today we as Christians often find many different excuses as to why we don’t/won’t do something. That something can be going to church, prayer, or bible study. That something can be our callings in life. That something can even be just being kind to people and treating people in a manner we ourselves desire to be treated.
The first person said he had a piece of ground that he had bought and he had to go and see it, something that obviously could have waited. The second one said that he had oxen to prove, which also could have been done at a later time, and the third got married, and I am sure could have brought his wife with him. But as they have made these dismal excuses, we are reminded of a time where we ourselves may have done that very same thing. Some of us in fact are still doing it. Where would we be if God made an excuse every time we needed Him, I fear to wonder where many of us would be at this very moment.
It is time for us to stop making excuses and do what we already know we should be doing for the Kingdom of God. If this is being kinder to people, forgiving people, answering our callings and executing them, going to church to be fed the gospel or going to prayer to lift someone else up in prayer. It is indeed time for us to stop making excuses. The time is now, not later!
My prayer today is father let us not be slothful any longer. Cause us to do that which we are called to do and stop making excuses so that you Glory may be truly made manifest to each and every one of us. Lord lead us in ways of righteousness and remove the scales from our eyes and cause us to see and hear what Your Holy Spirit is saying unto the churches today; in Jesus name, amen.
2 Corinthians 7:1
“Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.”
When we truly have a fear of god, we should then desire to be cleansed of all filthiness of the flesh as well as the spirit. We know that in order for us to perfect holiness we must be clean, and being clean is the way to obtaining the promises of God.
God so desires for all of us to receive His promises, but we must do our part also. The word of God states that obedience is greater than sacrifice (1 Samuel 15:22). He gives us instructions all throughout the bible, and we know that those instructions must be followed; meaning we must be obedient. To obtain and perfect holiness, we must first learn obedience.
We must remember, “The fear of the LORD is to hate evil: pride, and arrogancy, and the evil way.”(Proverbs 8:13). He says further in the scripture that “the forward mouth, do I hate.” So we know for certain that there is no other way to Holiness, other than first being cleansed of all things that is not of God! My prayer today is Father, may we always have a fear of you that will cause us to always want to be cleansed and purged of all filthiness of both the flesh and the spirit; teaching us how to obtain and maintain holiness so that we may receive all Your promises, in Jesus name, amen.
The LORD is my portion, saith my soul; therefore will I hope in him.
When the Lord is our portion; all our hope is in Him. We trust not in the things of this world, we do not depend on the people we know nor do we lean on our own understanding, but we do hope in our Lord and Savior. We hope in Him, for our faith is to be found soundly within Him. We know without any hindrance or doubt that we can depend on God for all our needs.
Often times we are faced with situations where we feel like we have failed God, we then beat ourselves up for the mere fact that we know we have placed our hope in others things other than God. we know that we should know better, so we are often hard on our own selves. This would be a prime example of us leaning on our own understanding, but we must remember the sacrifice that Christ has made for us who believe; remembering that He has already paid the cost for us. This is not to say to take God’s grace for granted, but know that we don’t even have the power to condemn our own selves, only God does.
Hope for strength…and believe…Hope for deliverance…and believe…Hope for victory and believe; and in Him it shall be.
So today, no matter what you may be facing remember who we have placed our hope in. Remember that his love still abides with us…remember the Lord is our portion and continue to place all hope in Him. My prayers for today, Father grant us the wisdom to lean not on our own understanding, so that our hope shall remain in you and you alone, in Jesus name I pray, amen.
Behold, we count them happy which endure. Ye have heard of the patience of Job, and have seen the end of the Lord; that the Lord is very pitiful, and of tender mercy.
To endure something means to hold out against; to sustain without impairment of yielding. To endure means that no matter what trial we are facing…we will stand strong and not give in to the circumstance. The scripture says those that endure are counted happy, meaning our reward for enduring shall bring us joy.
Further examining the scripture, we are all familiar with Job and the patience he exuded. Job was inflicted with all sorts of trials and tribulations and yet he never gave up faith. He continued to trust and believe in God in spite of his circumstances, and because of it he was rewarded with even more than what he had before. Lesson; when we continue to trust and believe…the reward is indeed great. God had great compassion and mercy on Job, because Job endured the trials he had to go through and continued to stand. God so desires to reward each and every one of us as he has done for Job…So no matter what trials we are faced with, let us remember Job, and learn from him so that we too may be counted happy for we too have endured!!!
My prayers for today, Lord cause us to be more like Job in his faith. No matter what trials we may encounter, I pray for the strength for each and every one of us to endure. We shall not doubt or waiver due to the tribulations that we may often stumble upon, but we shall instead stand, knowing that our Lord word of promise shall be made manifested to those of us who endure to the end; in Jesus name I pray, amen.
I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called, With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love; Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; One Lord, one faith, one baptism, One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.
In Ephesians 4:1-6, Paul is teaching us how to walk in our callings. It would be good for us to remember that no matter what we are called to do, we should always remember that God is no respect of persons. He expects us to love one another, and be able to be patient with one another. He expects us to be able to be willing to listen/hear, and not just always speak. He wants us to know that we are all part of one body as believers and the unity we share is our belief in Christ.
Though we may have different gifts, we are still part of the same body, for there is one Lord, one faith, One God, and Father of us all, who is in all of us who believes. The word unity means the state or condition of being one. Therefore there is no compromise, we must behave accordingly. Remembering that our one hope is in Christ Jesus and not ourselves; unity with our sisters and brothers should be an easy task. We do not put faith in ourselves, but in the One who has so graciously delivered us from ourselves; Christ Jesus. Let us come together in unity as God so desires us to do and walk worthy of the vocations we are called. Let us support one another by encouraging one another by being at peace with one another.
My prayer today is Father; teach us effectively how to walk in that which You have called us to do, so that our works will be good works of faith. Teach us how to be humble in the gifts you have bestowed upon us and acknowledge that you are more than able to do a work in and through whomever you have chosen to do so. And Father, let us always remember that there is one body, and one Spirit, One lord, one faith, one baptism, One God and Father of All…In Jesus name I pray, amen.
He that is of a proud heart stirreth up strife: but he that putteth his trust in the LORD shall be made fat.
The word proud means one having, proceeding from, or showing a high opinion of one’s own dignity, importance, or superiority. When people possess a proud heart, they are often self-absorbed and unaware that strife has taken root within them. In Proverbs 6:16-17, it states that a proud look is one of the things that the Lord hate, so if he hates the very look of it, can we imagine how he feels concerning the act of it; the act of it often being strife.
If we look closer at the word strife and the meaning thereof, we realize it is not a welcomed word. One who operates in strife is one who partakes in bitterness and sometimes violence or rivalry. We know that the spirit of competition is not of God, so being learned in the word of God, we should know better than to allow this spirit to use us.
The second part of the verse states that “he that putteth his trust in the Lord shall be made fat.” The persons who put their trust in the Lord shall be prosperous. Putting our trust in the Lord ensures us that we will overcome any adversities that come our way, including strife. We will know how to effectively handle strife in a manner that is pleasing to God, for we have put our trust in Him.
My prayer today is Father teach us how to live our lives free from any conflict. Let us learn to be at peace with one another by always practicing good comradeship with our fellow servants; and that we always remember that you are a God of peace and not confusion, in Jesus name I pray, amen.
Romans 12: 9-10 Let love be without dissimulation. Abhor that which is evil; cleave to that which is good. Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another;
What the scripture is saying here is for us to let our love for one another to be real and unfeigned. We are expected to show affection to one another with “brotherly love” at all times, and not just some times. This is not to say show love in front of the congregation when everyone is looking and tell your brother and sisters you love them, and then as soon as you’re somewhere else where not as many eyes are on you, you allow the spirit of backbiting to use you by talking about that same individual that you just professed love for. This sort of behavior is not pleasing to God.
The scripture also says to abhor that which is evil. To abhor something means to dislike something…meaning when we truly love, we will refrain from things or behavior that are evil. We will not sit in the company of that which is evil, nor partake of any behavior that is evil. If we are in the company of a talebearer; one who speaks against a brother or sister, our love should be bold enough to speak out against such behavior, and if it continues we should know to flee the presence of that sort of company. We should always desire to be encouraging by speaking good things over a person, and not negative things. Proverbs 10:12 say, “Hatred stirreth up strifes: but love covereth all sins.” A person who sows discord is usually a person who’s heart is filled with hatred; but to love, it covers sin. Love speak no evil towards our brothers or sisters.
My prayer today is father teach us how to love according to your will and not our own; that we shall speak that which is positive over one another so that our hearts will hold no hatred. Teach us how to show forth our love but correcting that which appears to be evil as well as fleeing from that which refuses to be corrected, in Jesus name I pray, amen.
Psalms 46: 10-11
Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth. 11The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah.
The statement in this week verse asks us to Be Still. Most of us take this verse as a time to stop, and consider our way but this verse involves a more in-depth response then our response to stop for the above verse of this chapter is dealing with trouble times. Though the earth is removed and mountains be carried in the sea, be still here means to become weak, let go, cease striving, quit trying; it truly means let go and let God.
Storms will arise up in our lives, and the storms are ragging and there seems to be no release. Be weak just don’t seem like a good idea but now is the time to be still in your marriage, be still with your children, be still with your family, friends, and foes. Be still with your jobs, be still with your health, be still in your financial state, and be still in everything that concerns you. Do not be moved by what you see, but be still in who you believe in (God). To be still is hard for most believers because we are so concerned about doing good works, we get in the way of being still; hence in the way of God. Today is a good day for us to start being still and consider before we start the day, instead of things that you wanted to do today; just be still and let God.
Spiritual serenity (being still), is our responsibility in spite of everything going wrong around us. So as you set out to fulfill your destiny in life, and it seems that it is a fight right from the beginning, be still (go weak) and let go, and let God fight your battles.
My prayer for today is God I pray that we be still so that you can do a work in us, through us, and around us. Lord cause us to be still so that you can fight our battles, for the battles that we allow you to fight we shall come out victorious, in Jesus name I pray, amen.
Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.
If we look up the definition of the word faith in any dictionary it will define in several ways, which all comes back to the scripture above…the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. When we exercise faith, we are affirming that we believe and trust in the outcome of that which we are asking of our Lord.
Faith knows that no matter what situations we may often find ourselves in, we still believe that we will come out victorious. We know that no matter what trials we may be currently facing, that we will come through it. We cannot allow ourselves to become weary, when things start to look a little bleak… Psalms 91 is a very empowering and uplifting Psalms. “I will say of the LORD, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust. Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler, and from the noisome pestilence. He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be thy shield and buckler. Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day; Nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor for the destruction that wasteth at noonday.” (Psalms 91:2-6). This is a powerful Psalms of faith…
When we read and study the word of God, we know that God is who He says he is and will do exactly what he says he will do for His word is truth. The word of God says in Mark 11:24, “Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.” Faith is is simply believing and we must always remember“But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.”
My prayer today, Lord may we always exercise Faith in our everyday walk. That no matter what we may face daily, that we shall still believe that you are more than able to see us through any situation. We will always trust in you and know that your word is truth and whatsoever we ask of you, that we shall believe it is already done, in Jesus name, Amen!
“Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus. Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. Let us therefore, as many as be perfect, be thus minded: and if in any thing ye be otherwise minded, God shall reveal even this unto you.” (Philippians 3: 12-15).
As we embark on a New Year we as believers must be totally become devoted for the number twelve represents God’s Perfection. The scriptures states that we must not dwell on the past mistake, past failures, or even the things we left undone. There are too many Christians who dwell on that which do not concern them when there are people dying all around us. We must stay devoted to our calling, whatever that calling may be. It would be in our best interest to stay devoted to that calling, by staying focused on it. God really desires and wants to perfect that which concerns us.
My prayer for today, Father, let us not dwell on the things of past, but cause us to be devoted to that which you have called and is calling us to do in this hour and the future, so that your perfect will shall be done in our lives, in Jesus name I pray, Amen.