Every good and perfect gift comes from God, so let’s focus on the giver instead of the gift and be content with what we have since with God we have everything we need.

Ecclesiastes 5:19-20

19 Also, every man to whom God has given riches and possessions, and the power to enjoy them and to accept his appointed lot and to rejoice in his toil–this is the gift of God [to him].20 For he shall not much remember [seriously] the days of his life, because God [Himself] answers and corresponds to the joy of his heart [the tranquility of God is mirrored in him].

God wants us to view what we have (whether it is much or little) with the right perspective-our possessions are a gift from God. Although they are not the source of joy, they are a reason to rejoice because every good thing comes from God. We should focus more on the Giver than the gift. We can be content with what we have when we realize that with God, we have everything we need.

18 For the story and message of the cross is sheer absurdity and folly to those who are perishing and on their way to perdition, but to us who are being saved it is the [manifestation of] the power of God.

1 Corinthians 1:18

Heavenly Father,
I thank You that Your Word and Your people are around me. I thank You Lord that daily Your Word speaks hope and truth to me and my heart. I thank You Lord for people who share encourage and hope and Your Word and Wisdom through tools that can speak into my life at just the right time, just as You are able to speak through Your Holy Spirit into my life at home, at work, in the car, and anywhere in between. Lord, I thank You for caring for me and allowing me to pursue the dreams of my childhood and that You would provide me the answers. I thank You for caring for me and bring me out from a difficult place where I thought I was busy and into a place where I could learn about the power and promises of God through a living relationship with You and Your people and the impact that has made on my work, my life, my relationships, my perspective, and my hope ever since. God I know that in life there will be troubles, but Your Word says that we should take heart for Jesus has overcome the world and Lord, we even read that Jesus doesn’t ask us to be taken up from the world, but that You keep and protect us from the evil one. God as I look to You today as my source of strength and wisdom and as I look ahead praying that You will open the right door for what You have planned next, I praise You for the encouragement You provide and rebuke the fear the enemy tries to bring into my mind and heart, in Jesus’ name. Lord, Lord, as I look at even the first
Tweet I saw this morning, it spoke right into this – Fear tries to get us to give up, but faith takes us all the way through to victory! Lord, I lift up this day and weekend to You and ask that You will be glorified in all I do and say and pray Lord that You will receive all the praise, the honor, and the glory, in Jesus’ name. Amen.

Psalm 106

1 PRAISE THE Lord! (Hallelujah!) O give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; for His mercy and loving-kindness endure forever! 2 Who can put into words and tell the mighty deeds of the Lord? Or who can show forth all the praise [that is due Him]?3 Blessed (happy, fortunate, to be envied) are those who observe justice [treating others fairly] and who do right and are in right standing with God at all times.4 [Earnestly] remember me, O Lord, when You favor Your people! O visit me also when You deliver them, and grant me Your salvation!–5 That I may see and share the welfare of Your chosen ones, that I may rejoice in the gladness of Your nation, that I may glory with Your heritage.6 We have sinned, as did also our fathers; we have committed iniquity, we have done wickedly. 7 Our fathers in Egypt understood not nor appreciated Your miracles; they did not [earnestly] remember the multitude of Your mercies nor imprint Your loving-kindness [on their hearts], but they were rebellious and provoked the Lord at the sea, even at the Red Sea. 8 Nevertheless He saved them for His name’s sake [to prove the righteousness of the divine character], that He might make His mighty power known.9 He rebuked the Red Sea also, and it dried up; so He led them through the depths as through a pastureland. 10 And He saved them from the hand of him that hated them, and redeemed them from the hand of the [Egyptian] enemy. 11 And the waters covered their adversaries; not one of them was left. 12 Then [Israel] believed His words [trusting in, relying on them]; they sang His praise.13 But they hastily forgot His works; they did not [earnestly] wait for His plans [to develop] regarding them,14 But lusted exceedingly in the wilderness and tempted and tried to restrain God [with their insistent desires] in the desert. 15 And He gave them their request, but sent leanness into their souls and [thinned their numbers by] disease and death. 16 They envied Moses also in the camp, and Aaron [the high priest], the holy one of the Lord. 17 Therefore the earth opened and swallowed up Dathan and closed over the company of Abiram. 18 And a fire broke out in their company; the flame burned up the wicked. 19 They made a calf in Horeb and worshiped a molten image. 20 Thus they exchanged Him Who was their Glory for the image of an ox that eats grass [they traded their Honor for the image of a calf]!21 They forgot God their Savior, Who had done such great things in Egypt,22 Wonders and miracles in the land of Ham, dreadful and awesome things at the Red Sea.23 Therefore He said He would destroy them. [And He would have done so] had not Moses, His chosen one, stepped into the breach before Him to turn away His threatening wrath. 24 Then they spurned and despised the pleasant and desirable land [Canaan]; they believed not His word [neither trusting in, relying on, nor holding to it];25 But they murmured in their tents and hearkened not to the voice of the Lord.26 Therefore He lifted up His hand [as if taking an oath] against them, that He would cause them to fall in the wilderness,27 Cast out their descendants among the nations, and scatter them in the lands [of the earth].28 They joined themselves also to the [idol] Baal of Peor and ate sacrifices [offered] to the lifeless [gods].29 Thus they provoked the Lord to anger with their practices, and a plague broke out among them.30 Then stood up Phinehas [the priest] and executed judgment, and so the plague was stayed. 31 And that was credited to him for righteousness (right doing and right standing with God) to all generations forever.32 They angered the Lord also at the waters of Meribah, so that it went ill with Moses for their sakes; 33 For they provoked [Moses’] spirit, so that he spoke unadvisedly with his lips.34 They did not destroy the [heathen] nations as the Lord commanded them,35 But mingled themselves with the [idolatrous] nations and learned their ways and works36 And served their idols, which were a snare to them.37 Yes, they sacrificed their sons and their daughters to demons 38 And shed innocent blood, even the blood of their sons and of their daughters, whom they sacrificed to the idols of Canaan; and the land was polluted with their blood.39 Thus were they defiled by their own works, and they played the harlot and practiced idolatry with their own deeds [of idolatrous rites].40 Therefore was the wrath of the Lord kindled against His people, insomuch that He abhorred and rejected His own heritage. 41 And He gave them into the hands of the [heathen] nations, and they that hated them ruled over them.42 Their enemies also oppressed them, and they were brought into subjection under the hand of their foes.43 Many times did [God] deliver them, but they were rebellious in their counsel and sank low through their iniquity.44 Nevertheless He regarded their distress when He heard their cry;45 And He [earnestly] remembered for their sake His covenant and relented their sentence of evil [comforting and easing Himself] according to the abundance of His mercy and loving-kindness [when they cried out to Him].46 He also caused [Israel] to find sympathy among those who had carried them away captive.47 Deliver us, O Lord our God, and gather us from among the nations, that we may give thanks to Your holy name and glory in praising You.48 Blessed (affectionately and gratefully praised) be the Lord, the God of Israel, from everlasting to everlasting! And let all the people say, Amen! Praise the Lord! (Hallelujah!)

Proverbs 13

1 A WISE son heeds [and is the fruit of] his father’s instruction and correction, but a scoffer listens not to rebuke.2 A good man eats good from the fruit of his mouth, but the desire of the treacherous is for violence.3 He who guards his mouth keeps his life, but he who opens wide his lips comes to ruin.4 The appetite of the sluggard craves and gets nothing, but the appetite of the diligent is abundantly supplied. 5 A [consistently] righteous man hates lying and deceit, but a wicked man is loathsome [his very breath spreads pollution] and he comes [surely] to shame.6 Righteousness (rightness and justice in every area and relation) guards him who is upright in the way, but wickedness plunges into sin and overthrows the sinner.7 One man considers himself rich, yet has nothing [to keep permanently]; another man considers himself poor, yet has great [and indestructible] riches. 8 A rich man can buy his way out of threatened death by paying a ransom, but the poor man does not even have to listen to threats [from the envious].9 The light of the [uncompromisingly] righteous [is within him–it grows brighter and] rejoices, but the lamp of the wicked [furnishes only a derived, temporary light and] shall be put out shortly.10 By pride and insolence comes only contention, but with the well-advised is skillful and godly Wisdom.11 Wealth [not earned but] won in haste or unjustly or from the production of things for vain or detrimental use [such riches] will dwindle away, but he who gathers little by little will increase [his riches].12 Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but when the desire is fulfilled, it is a tree of life.13 Whoever despises the word and counsel [of God] brings destruction upon himself, but he who [reverently] fears and respects the commandment [of God] is rewarded.14 The teaching of the wise is a fountain of life, that one may avoid the snares of death.15 Good understanding wins favor, but the way of the transgressor is hard [like the barren, dry soil or the impassable swamp].16 Every prudent man deals with knowledge, but a [self-confident] fool exposes and flaunts his folly.17 A wicked messenger falls into evil, but a faithful ambassador brings healing.18 Poverty and shame come to him who refuses instruction and correction, but he who heeds reproof is honored.19 Satisfied desire is sweet to a person; therefore it is hateful and exceedingly offensive to [self-confident] fools to give up evil [upon which they have set their hearts].20 He who walks [as a companion] with wise men is wise, but he who associates with [self-confident] fools is [a fool himself and] shall smart for it. 21 Evil pursues sinners, but the consistently upright and in right standing with God is recompensed with good.22 A good man leaves an inheritance [of moral stability and goodness] to his children’s children, and the wealth of the sinner [finds its way eventually] into the hands of the righteous, for whom it was laid up.23 Much food is in the tilled land of the poor, but there are those who are destroyed because of injustice.24 He who spares his rod [of discipline] hates his son, but he who loves him disciplines diligently and punishes him early. 25 The [uncompromisingly] righteous eats to his own satisfaction, but the stomach of the wicked is in want.


Do you know what your purpose is in life? Do you know where your purpose starts or comes from? Once you know whom it is from, it will be possible to fulfill your purpose.


Ecclesiastes 3:14

14 I know that whatever God does, it endures forever; nothing can be added to it nor anything taken from it. And God does it so that men will [reverently] fear Him [revere and worship Him, knowing that He is].

What is the purpose of life? It is that we should revere the all-powerful God. To revere God means to respect and stand in awe of him because of who he is. Purpose in life starts with whom we know, not what we know or how good we are. It is impossible to fulfill your God-given purpose unless you revere God and give him first place in your life.

Put another way:

Matthew 6:31-34

31 Therefore do not worry and be anxious, saying, What are we going to have to eat? or, What are we going to have to drink? or, What are we going to have to wear?32 For the Gentiles (heathen) wish for and crave and diligently seek all these things, and your heavenly Father knows well that you need them all.33 But seek (aim at and strive after) first of all His kingdom and His righteousness (His way of doing and being right), and then all these things taken together will be given you besides.34 So do not worry or be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will have worries and anxieties of its own. Sufficient for each day is its own trouble.

35 Who shall ever separate us from Christ’s love? Shall suffering and affliction and tribulation? Or calamity and distress? Or persecution or hunger or destitution or peril or sword?

Romans 8:35

Heavenly Father,
I thank You for this new day and all that You will bring into it. I praise You Lord that You made a way for us to not only come into a reconciled and living life with You through Jesus Christ, but also a way to keep us with You and not allowing anything to take us away from our shepherd. Heavenly Father, I am so thankful for who You are and I know that the work You have begun in me You will bring to completion through Jesus Christ my Lord. I know Lord that You have plans for me that are for good, to make me more like Jesus, to build my character, to strengthen me, and to build my faith and testimony. Lord, help me today to not worry or be anxious, but to keep my eyes and focus on You. Lord, help me today to remember the promises You made in Matthew 6:31-34 so that I may step out in faith, trusting and believing in You. And Lord, grant me wisdom and discernment today and help me Lord to glorify, honor, and praise You through all that I saw, all that I do, and all that I think, in Jesus’ name. Amen.

Psalm 105

1 O GIVE thanks unto the Lord, call upon His name, make known His doings among the peoples!2 Sing to Him, sing praises to Him; meditate on and talk of all His marvelous deeds and devoutly praise them.3 Glory in His holy name; let the hearts of those rejoice who seek and require the Lord [as their indispensable necessity].4 Seek, inquire of and for the Lord, and crave Him and His strength (His might and inflexibility to temptation); seek and require His face and His presence [continually] evermore.5 [Earnestly] remember the marvelous deeds that He has done, His miracles and wonders, the judgments and sentences which He pronounced [upon His enemies, as in Egypt]. 6 O you offspring of Abraham His servant, you children of Jacob, His chosen ones,7 He is the Lord our God; His judgments are in all the earth.8 He is [earnestly] mindful of His covenant and forever it is imprinted on His heart, the word which He commanded and established to a thousand generations,9 The covenant which He made with Abraham, and His sworn promise to Isaac, 10 Which He confirmed to Jacob as a statute, to Israel as an everlasting covenant,11 Saying, Unto you will I give the land of Canaan as your measured portion, possession, and inheritance.12 When they were but a few men in number, in fact, very few, and were temporary residents and strangers in it,13 When they went from one nation to another, from one kingdom to another people,14 He allowed no man to do them wrong; in fact, He reproved kings for their sakes, 15 Saying, Touch not My anointed, and do My prophets no harm. 16 Moreover, He called for a famine upon the land [of Egypt]; He cut off every source of bread. 17 He sent a man before them, even Joseph, who was sold as a servant. 18 His feet they hurt with fetters; he was laid in chains of iron and his soul entered into the iron,19 Until his word [to his cruel brothers] came true, until the word of the Lord tried and tested him.20 The king sent and loosed him, even the ruler of the peoples, and let him go free.21 He made Joseph lord of his house and ruler of all his substance, 22 To bind his princes at his pleasure and teach his elders wisdom.23 Israel also came into Egypt; and Jacob sojourned in the land of Ham. 24 There [the Lord] greatly increased His people and made them stronger than their oppressors.25 He turned the hearts [of the Egyptians] to hate His people, to deal craftily with His servants.26 He sent Moses His servant, and Aaron, whom He had chosen.27 They showed His signs among them, wonders and miracles in the land of Ham (Egypt).28 He sent [thick] darkness and made the land dark, and they [God’s two servants] rebelled not against His word. 29 He turned [Egypt’s] waters into blood and caused their fish to die. 30 Their land brought forth frogs in abundance, even in the chambers of their kings. 31 He spoke, and there came swarms of beetles and flies and mosquitoes and lice in all their borders. 32 He gave them hail for rain, with lightning like flaming fire in their land. 33 He smote their vines also and their fig trees and broke the [ice-laden] trees of their borders. 34 He spoke, and the locusts came, and the grasshoppers, and that without number, 35 And ate up all the vegetation in their land and devoured the fruit of their ground.36 He smote also all the firstborn in their land, the beginning and chief substance of all their strength. 37 He brought [Israel] forth also with silver and gold, and there was not one feeble person among their tribes. 38 Egypt was glad when they departed, for the fear of them had fallen upon the people. 39 The Lord spread a cloud for a covering [by day], and a fire to give light in the night. 40 [The Israelites] asked, and He brought quails and satisfied them with the bread of heaven. 41 He opened the rock, and water gushed out; it ran in the dry places like a river. 42 For He [earnestly] remembered His holy word and promise to Abraham His servant. 43 And He brought forth His people with joy, and His chosen ones with gladness and singing,44 And gave them the lands of the nations [of Canaan], and they reaped the fruits of those peoples’ labor, 45 That they might observe His statutes and keep His laws [hearing, receiving, loving, and obeying them]. Praise the Lord! (Hallelujah!)

Proverbs 12

1 WHOEVER LOVES instruction and correction loves knowledge, but he who hates reproof is like a brute beast, stupid and indiscriminating.2 A good man obtains favor from the Lord, but a man of wicked devices He condemns.3 A man shall not be established by wickedness, but the root of the [uncompromisingly] righteous shall never be moved.4 A virtuous and worthy wife [earnest and strong in character] is a crowning joy to her husband, but she who makes him ashamed is as rottenness in his bones. 5 The thoughts and purposes of the [consistently] righteous are honest and reliable, but the counsels and designs of the wicked are treacherous.6 The words of the wicked lie in wait for blood, but the mouth of the upright shall deliver them and the innocent ones [thus endangered].7 The wicked are overthrown and are not, but the house of the [uncompromisingly] righteous shall stand.8 A man shall be commended according to his Wisdom [godly Wisdom, which is comprehensive insight into the ways and purposes of God], but he who is of a perverse heart shall be despised.9 Better is he who is lightly esteemed but works for his own support than he who assumes honor for himself and lacks bread.10 A [consistently] righteous man regards the life of his beast, but even the tender mercies of the wicked are cruel. 11 He who tills his land shall be satisfied with bread, but he who follows worthless pursuits is lacking in sense and is without understanding.12 The wicked desire the booty of evil men, but the root of the [uncompromisingly] righteous yields [richer fruitage].13 The wicked is [dangerously] snared by the transgression of his lips, but the [uncompromisingly] righteous shall come out of trouble.14 From the fruit of his words a man shall be satisfied with good, and the work of a man’s hands shall come back to him [as a harvest].15 The way of a fool is right in his own eyes, but he who listens to counsel is wise. 16 A fool’s wrath is quickly and openly known, but a prudent man ignores an insult.17 He who breathes out truth shows forth righteousness (uprightness and right standing with God), but a false witness utters deceit.18 There are those who speak rashly, like the piercing of a sword, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.19 Truthful lips shall be established forever, but a lying tongue is [credited] but for a moment.20 Deceit is in the hearts of those who devise evil, but for the counselors of peace there is joy.21 No [actual] evil, misfortune, or calamity shall come upon the righteous, but the wicked shall be filled with evil, misfortune, and calamity. 22 Lying lips are extremely disgusting and hateful to the Lord, but they who deal faithfully are His delight. 23 A prudent man is reluctant to display his knowledge, but the heart of [self-confident] fools proclaims their folly. 24 The hand of the diligent will rule, but the slothful will be put to forced labor.25 Anxiety in a man’s heart weighs it down, but an encouraging word makes it glad. 26 The [consistently] righteous man is a guide to his neighbor, but the way of the wicked causes others to go astray.27 The slothful man does not catch his game or roast it once he kills it, but the diligent man gets precious possessions.28 Life is in the way of righteousness (moral and spiritual rectitude in every area and relation), and in its pathway there is no death but immortality (perpetual, eternal life).

Are you chasing after the wind while trying to find meaning in life? Security and self-worth are not found in these accomplishments, but in the love of God.

Ecclesiastes 2:11

11 Then I looked on all that my hands had done and the labor I had spent in doing it, and behold, all was vanity and a striving after the wind and a feeding on it, and there was no profit under the sun.

Solomon summarized all his attempts at finding life’s meaning as "chasing the wind." We feel the wind as it passes, but we can’t catch hold of it or keep it. In all our accomplishments, even the big ones, our good feelings are only temporary. Security and self-worth are not found in these accomplishments, but far beyond them in the love of God. Think about what you consider worthwhile in your life-where you place your time, energy, and money. Will you one day look back and decide that these, too, were "chasing the wind"?

6 Train up a child in the way he should go [and in keeping with his individual gift or bent], and when he is old he will not depart from it.

Proverbs 22:6

Heavenly Father,
I thank You for this new day and all the plans You have before me. Thank You for the learning and experience You provided me yesterday, although it wasn’t the outcome I was hoping for, I was able to get wisdom from it and I praise You for that. Lord give me the wisdom, confidence, and courage to do and to say what is needed. Help me to realize the tone and passion with which I speak so that You may use it and bless it for Your glory. As I go out today, I thank You for helping my body to feel better this morning and for the rest You provide me. Lord, I look to You for wisdom Lord. I look to You for discernment as to what You would have me do next. As I knock, I pray that You will help me to see the right doors and will open them that I may do what You are calling me to do. With all that You have helped me through and over and around, I know that the plans You have for me are good and that with You all things are possible. So Lord, today I hold onto Jeremiah 29:11 and look to You for wisdom and guidance as I walk out my day in Jesus’ name, giving You all the praise, the honor, and the glory, Amen.

Psalm 104

1 BLESS (AFFECTIONATELY, gratefully praise) the Lord, O my soul! O Lord my God, You are very great! You are clothed with honor and majesty–2 [You are the One] Who covers Yourself with light as with a garment, Who stretches out the heavens like a curtain or a tent,3 Who lays the beams of the upper room of His abode in the waters [above the firmament], Who makes the clouds His chariot, Who walks on the wings of the wind,4 Who makes winds His messengers, flames of fire His ministers. 5 You laid the foundations of the earth, that it should not be moved forever. 6 You covered it with the deep as with a garment; the waters stood above the mountains. 7 At Your rebuke they fled; at the voice of Your thunder they hastened away.8 The mountains rose, the valleys sank down to the place which You appointed for them.9 You have set a boundary [for the waters] which they may not pass over, that they turn not again to deluge the earth.10 He sends forth springs into the valleys; their waters run among the mountains.11 They give drink to every [wild] beast of the field; the wild asses quench their thirst there.12 Beside them the birds of the heavens have their nests; they sing among the branches. 13 He waters the mountains from His upper rooms; the earth is satisfied and abounds with the fruit of His works.14 He causes vegetation to grow for the cattle, and all that the earth produces for man to cultivate, that he may bring forth food out of the earth–15 And wine that gladdens the heart of man, to make his face shine more than oil, and bread to support, refresh, and strengthen man’s heart.16 The trees of the Lord are watered abundantly and are filled with sap, the cedars of Lebanon which He has planted,17 Where the birds make their nests; as for the stork, the fir trees are her house.18 The high mountains are for the wild goats; the rocks are a refuge for the conies and badgers.19 [The Lord] appointed the moon for the seasons; the sun knows [the exact time of] its setting.20 You [O Lord] make darkness and it becomes night, in which creeps forth every wild beast of the forest.21 The young lions roar after their prey and seek their food from God.22 When the sun arises, they withdraw themselves and lie down in their dens.23 Man goes forth to his work and remains at his task until evening.24 O Lord, how many and varied are Your works! In wisdom have You made them all; the earth is full of Your riches and Your creatures.25 Yonder is the sea, great and wide, in which are swarms of innumerable creeping things, creatures both small and great.26 There go the ships of the sea, and Leviathan (the sea monster), which You have formed to sport in it.27 These all wait and are dependent upon You, that You may give them their food in due season.28 When You give it to them, they gather it up; You open Your hand, and they are filled with good things.29 When You hide Your face, they are troubled and dismayed; when You take away their breath, they die and return to their dust.30 When You send forth Your Spirit and give them breath, they are created, and You replenish the face of the ground.31 May the glory of the Lord endure forever; may the Lord rejoice in His works–32 Who looks on the earth, and it quakes and trembles, Who touches the mountains, and they smoke!33 I will sing to the Lord as long as I live; I will sing praise to my God while I have any being.34 May my meditation be sweet to Him; as for me, I will rejoice in the Lord.35 Let sinners be consumed from the earth, and let the wicked be no more. Bless (affectionately, gratefully praise) the Lord, O my soul! Praise the Lord! (Hallelujah!)


Proverbs 11

1 A FALSE balance and unrighteous dealings are extremely offensive and shamefully sinful to the Lord, but a just weight is His delight. 2 When swelling and pride come, then emptiness and shame come also, but with the humble (those who are lowly, who have been pruned or chiseled by trial, and renounce self) are skillful and godly Wisdom and soundness.3 The integrity of the upright shall guide them, but the willful contrariness and crookedness of the treacherous shall destroy them.4 Riches provide no security in any day of wrath and judgment, but righteousness (uprightness and right standing with God) delivers from death. 5 The righteousness of the blameless shall rectify and make plain their way and keep it straight, but the wicked shall fall by their own wickedness.6 The righteousness of the upright [their rectitude in every area and relation] shall deliver them, but the treacherous shall be taken in their own iniquity and greedy desire.7 When the wicked man dies, his hope [for the future] perishes; and the expectation of the godless comes to nothing.8 The [uncompromisingly] righteous is delivered out of trouble, and the wicked gets into it instead.9 With his mouth the godless man destroys his neighbor, but through knowledge and superior discernment shall the righteous be delivered.10 When it goes well with the [uncompromisingly] righteous, the city rejoices, but when the wicked perish, there are shouts of joy.11 By the blessing of the influence of the upright and God’s favor [because of them] the city is exalted, but it is overthrown by the mouth of the wicked.12 He who belittles and despises his neighbor lacks sense, but a man of understanding keeps silent.13 He who goes about as a talebearer reveals secrets, but he who is trustworthy and faithful in spirit keeps the matter hidden.14 Where no wise guidance is, the people fall, but in the multitude of counselors there is safety.15 He who becomes security for an outsider shall smart for it, but he who hates suretyship is secure [from its penalties].16 A gracious and good woman wins honor [for her husband], and violent men win riches but a woman who hates righteousness is a throne of dishonor for him .17 The merciful, kind, and generous man benefits himself [for his deeds return to bless him], but he who is cruel and callous [to the wants of others] brings on himself retribution.18 The wicked man earns deceitful wages, but he who sows righteousness (moral and spiritual rectitude in every area and relation) shall have a sure reward [permanent and satisfying]. 19 He who is steadfast in righteousness (uprightness and right standing with God) attains to life, but he who pursues evil does it to his own death.20 They who are willfully contrary in heart are extremely disgusting and shamefully vile in the eyes of the Lord, but such as are blameless and wholehearted in their ways are His delight!21 Assuredly [I pledge it] the wicked shall not go unpunished, but the multitude of the [uncompromisingly] righteous shall be delivered.22 As a ring of gold in a swine’s snout, so is a fair woman who is without discretion.23 The desire of the [consistently] righteous brings only good, but the expectation of the wicked brings wrath.24 There are those who [generously] scatter abroad, and yet increase more; there are those who withhold more than is fitting or what is justly due, but it results only in want.25 The liberal person shall be enriched, and he who waters shall himself be watered. 26 The people curse him who holds back grain [when the public needs it], but a blessing [from God and man] is upon the head of him who sells it.27 He who diligently seeks good seeks [God’s] favor, but he who searches after evil, it shall come upon him.28 He who leans on, trusts in, and is confident in his riches shall fall, but the [uncompromisingly] righteous shall flourish like a green bough.29 He who troubles his own house shall inherit the wind, and the foolish shall be servant to the wise of heart.30 The fruit of the [uncompromisingly] righteous is a tree of life, and he who is wise captures human lives [for God, as a fisher of men–he gathers and receives them for eternity]. 31 Behold, the [uncompromisingly] righteous shall be recompensed on earth; how much more the wicked and the sinner! And if the righteous are barely saved, what will become of the ungodly and wicked?

Don’t be hampered or held back by fear. Put your hope and trust in God who can turn harm that was intended by others into good for those who trust in him.

Proverbs 29:25

25 The fear of man brings a snare, but whoever leans on, trusts in, and puts his confidence in the Lord is safe and set on high.

Fear of people can hamper everything you try to do. In extreme forms, it can make you afraid to leave your home. By contrast, fear of God-respect, reverence, and trust-is liberating. Why fear people who can do no eternal harm? Instead, fear God who can turn the harm intended by others into good for those who trust him.

22 But the fruit of the [Holy] Spirit [the work which His presence within accomplishes] is love, joy (gladness), peace, patience (an even temper, forbearance), kindness, goodness (benevolence), faithfulness,23 Gentleness (meekness, humility), self-control (self-restraint, continence). Against such things there is no law [that can bring a charge].

Galatians 5:22-23

Heavenly Father,
I thank You for this new day as it is a big one. I lift it up to You and ask Lord for Your guidance with every step and, every action I take, and every word and thought I speak. Help me today to find favor through this day and that You may receive the praise, the honor, and the glory through it. Lord, I thank You for the opportunities You bring into my life, the doors that You open for me to walk through, and the incredible love that You shower over me. As I look ahead, I know and remember that Your plans for me are good, not to harm me, but to give me a hope and a future. Lord, thank You for a good night sleep and for this day You bring before me. I praise You and in all I say and all I do today, may You receive all the praise, the honor, and the glory, in Jesus’ name. Amen.

Psalm 103

1 BLESS (AFFECTIONATELY, gratefully praise) the Lord, O my soul; and all that is [deepest] within me, bless His holy name!2 Bless (affectionately, gratefully praise) the Lord, O my soul, and forget not [one of] all His benefits–3 Who forgives [every one of] all your iniquities, Who heals [each one of] all your diseases,4 Who redeems your life from the pit and corruption, Who beautifies, dignifies, and crowns you with loving-kindness and tender mercy;5 Who satisfies your mouth [your necessity and desire at your personal age and situation] with good so that your youth, renewed, is like the eagle’s [strong, overcoming, soaring]! 6 The Lord executes righteousness and justice [not for me only, but] for all who are oppressed.7 He made known His ways [of righteousness and justice] to Moses, His acts to the children of Israel.8 The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and plenteous in mercy and loving-kindness. 9 He will not always chide or be contending, neither will He keep His anger forever or hold a grudge.10 He has not dealt with us after our sins nor rewarded us according to our iniquities.11 For as the heavens are high above the earth, so great are His mercy and loving-kindness toward those who reverently and worshipfully fear Him.12 As far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us.13 As a father loves and pities his children, so the Lord loves and pities those who fear Him [with reverence, worship, and awe].14 For He knows our frame, He [earnestly] remembers and imprints [on His heart] that we are dust.15 As for man, his days are as grass; as a flower of the field, so he flourishes.16 For the wind passes over it and it is gone, and its place shall know it no more.17 But the mercy and loving-kindness of the Lord are from everlasting to everlasting upon those who reverently and worshipfully fear Him, and His righteousness is to children’s children–18 To such as keep His covenant [hearing, receiving, loving, and obeying it] and to those who [earnestly] remember His commandments to do them [imprinting them on their hearts].19 The Lord has established His throne in the heavens, and His kingdom rules over all.20 Bless (affectionately, gratefully praise) the Lord, you His angels, you mighty ones who do His commandments, hearkening to the voice of His word.21 Bless (affectionately, gratefully praise) the Lord, all you His hosts, you His ministers who do His pleasure.22 Bless the Lord, all His works in all places of His dominion; bless (affectionately, gratefully praise) the Lord, O my soul!

Proverbs 10

1 THE PROVERBS of Solomon: A wise son makes a glad father, but a foolish and self-confident son is the grief of his mother.2 Treasures of wickedness profit nothing, but righteousness (moral and spiritual rectitude in every area and relation) delivers from death.3 The Lord will not allow the [uncompromisingly] righteous to famish, but He thwarts the desire of the wicked. 4 He becomes poor who works with a slack and idle hand, but the hand of the diligent makes rich.5 He who gathers in summer is a wise son, but he who sleeps in harvest is a son who causes shame.6 Blessings are upon the head of the [uncompromisingly] righteous (the upright, in right standing with God) but the mouth of the wicked conceals violence.7 The memory of the [uncompromisingly] righteous is a blessing, but the name of the wicked shall rot. 8 The wise in heart will accept and obey commandments, but the foolish of lips will fall headlong.9 He who walks uprightly walks securely, but he who takes a crooked way shall be found out and punished.10 He who winks with the eye [craftily and with malice] causes sorrow; the foolish of lips will fall headlong but he who boldly reproves makes peace .11 The mouth of the [uncompromisingly] righteous man is a well of life, but the mouth of the wicked conceals violence.12 Hatred stirs up contentions, but love covers all transgressions.13 On the lips of him who has discernment skillful and godly Wisdom is found, but discipline and the rod are for the back of him who is without sense and understanding.14 Wise men store up knowledge [in mind and heart], but the mouth of the foolish is a present destruction.15 The rich man’s wealth is his strong city; the poverty of the poor is their ruin. 16 The earnings of the righteous (the upright, in right standing with God) lead to life, but the profit of the wicked leads to further sin. 17 He who heeds instruction and correction is [not only himself] in the way of life [but also] is a way of life for others. And he who neglects or refuses reproof [not only himself] goes astray [but also] causes to err and is a path toward ruin for others.18 He who hides hatred is of lying lips, and he who utters slander is a [self-confident] fool. 19 In a multitude of words transgression is not lacking, but he who restrains his lips is prudent.20 The tongues of those who are upright and in right standing with God are as choice silver; the minds of those who are wicked and out of harmony with God are of little value.21 The lips of the [uncompromisingly] righteous feed and guide many, but fools die for want of understanding and heart.22 The blessing of the Lord–it makes [truly] rich, and He adds no sorrow with it [neither does toiling increase it].23 It is as sport to a [self-confident] fool to do wickedness, but to have skillful and godly Wisdom is pleasure and relaxation to a man of understanding.24 The thing a wicked man fears shall come upon him, but the desire of the [uncompromisingly] righteous shall be granted.25 When the whirlwind passes, the wicked are no more, but the [uncompromisingly] righteous have an everlasting foundation. 26 As vinegar to the teeth and as smoke to the eyes, so is the sluggard to those who employ and send him.27 The reverent and worshipful fear of the Lord prolongs one’s days, but the years of the wicked shall be made short.28 The hope of the [uncompromisingly] righteous (the upright, in right standing with God) is gladness, but the expectation of the wicked (those who are out of harmony with God) comes to nothing.29 The way of the Lord is strength and a stronghold to the upright, but it is destruction to the workers of iniquity.30 The [consistently] righteous shall never be removed, but the wicked shall not inhabit the earth [eventually]. 31 The mouths of the righteous (those harmonious with God) bring forth skillful and godly Wisdom, but the perverse tongue shall be cut down [like a barren and rotten tree].32 The lips of the [uncompromisingly] righteous know [and therefore utter] what is acceptable, but the mouth of the wicked knows [and therefore speaks only] what is obstinately willful and contrary.

Are you nagging or giving unwanted advice? Consider your motives and try using words of patience and love and then watch and see what happens.

Proverbs 27:15-16

15 A continual dripping on a day of violent showers and a contentious woman are alike; 16 Whoever attempts to restrain [a contentious woman] might as well try to stop the wind–his right hand encounters oil [and she slips through his fingers].

Quarrelsome nagging, a steady stream of unwanted advice, is a form of torture. People nag because they think they’re not getting through, but nagging hinders communication more than it helps. When tempted to engage in this destructive habit, stop and examine your motives. Are you more concerned about yourself-getting your way, being right-than about the person you are pretending to help? If you are truly concerned about other people, think of a more effective way to get through to them. Surprise them with words of patience and love, and see what happens.

24 Now to Him Who is able to keep you without stumbling or slipping or falling, and to present [you] unblemished (blameless and faultless) before the presence of His glory in triumphant joy and exultation [with unspeakable, ecstatic delight]–25 To the one only God, our Savior through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory (splendor), majesty, might and dominion, and power and authority, before all time and now and forever (unto all the ages of eternity). Amen (so be it).

Jude 1:24-25

Heavenly Father,
I thank You for this new day and for all that will be in it, for this is the day that You have made, I will rejoice and be glad in it. Lord, as I step out today I look to You for strength and wisdom, for peace and focus to help me accomplish what You have for me today. I pray for good health over my family and protection from any sickness that would try to get in the way of what is to come. Lord, I look to You today for wisdom and help so that I make Your priorities my priorities and your focus my focus. May my words and actions bring You praise and glory, may they be acts of worship to You. And throughout this day I will give You all the praise, the honor, and the glory, in Jesus’ name. Amen.

Psalm 102

1 HEAR MY prayer, O Lord, and let my cry come to You.2 Hide not Your face from me in the day when I am in distress! Incline Your ear to me; in the day when I call, answer me speedily.3 For my days consume away like smoke, and my bones burn like a firebrand or like a hearth.4 My heart is smitten like grass and withered, so that [in absorption] I forget to eat my food.5 By reason of my loud groaning [from suffering and trouble] my flesh cleaves to my bones.6 I am like a melancholy pelican or vulture of the wilderness; I am like a [desolate] owl of the waste places.7 I am sleepless and lie awake [mourning], like a bereaved sparrow alone on the housetop.8 My adversaries taunt and reproach me all the day; and they who are angry with me use my name as a curse.9 For I have eaten the ashes [in which I sat] as if they were bread and have mingled my drink with weeping10 Because of Your indignation and Your wrath, for You have taken me up and cast me away.11 My days are like an evening shadow that stretches out and declines [with the sun]; and I am withered like grass.12 But You, O Lord, are enthroned forever; and the fame of Your name endures to all generations.13 You will arise and have mercy and loving-kindness for Zion, for it is time to have pity and compassion for her; yes, the set time has come [the moment designated]. 14 For Your servants take [melancholy] pleasure in the stones [of her ruins] and show pity for her dust.15 So the nations shall fear and worshipfully revere the name of the Lord, and all the kings of the earth Your glory. 16 When the Lord builds up Zion, He will appear in His glory;17 He will regard the plea of the destitute and will not despise their prayer.18 Let this be recorded for the generation yet unborn, that a people yet to be created shall praise the Lord.19 For He looked down from the height of His sanctuary, from heaven did the Lord behold the earth,20 To hear the sighing and groaning of the prisoner, to loose those who are appointed to death,21 So that men may declare the name of the Lord in Zion and His praise in Jerusalem22 When peoples are gathered together, and the kingdoms, to worship and serve the Lord.23 He has afflicted and weakened my strength, humbling and bringing me low [with sorrow] in the way; He has shortened my days [aging me prematurely].24 I said, O my God, take me not away in the midst of my days, You Whose years continue throughout all generations.25 At the beginning You existed and laid the foundations of the earth; the heavens are the work of Your hands.26 They shall perish, but You shall remain and endure; yes, all of them shall wear out and become old like a garment. Like clothing You shall change them, and they shall be changed and pass away.27 But You remain the same, and Your years shall have no end. 28 The children of Your servants shall dwell safely and continue, and their descendants shall be established before You.

Proverbs 9

1 WISDOM HAS built her house; she has hewn out and set up her seven [perfect number of] pillars.2 She has killed her beasts, she has mixed her [spiritual] wine; she has also set her table. 3 She has sent out her maids to cry from the highest places of the town:4 Whoever is simple (easily led astray and wavering), let him turn in here! As for him who lacks understanding, [God’s] Wisdom says to him,5 Come, eat of my bread and drink of the [spiritual] wine which I have mixed. 6 Leave off, simple ones [forsake the foolish and simpleminded] and live! And walk in the way of insight and understanding.7 He who rebukes a scorner heaps upon himself abuse, and he who reproves a wicked man gets for himself bruises.8 Reprove not a scorner, lest he hate you; reprove a wise man, and he will love you. 9 Give instruction to a wise man and he will be yet wiser; teach a righteous man (one upright and in right standing with God) and he will increase in learning.10 The reverent and worshipful fear of the Lord is the beginning (the chief and choice part) of Wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is insight and understanding.11 For by me [Wisdom from God] your days shall be multiplied, and the years of your life shall be increased.12 If you are wise, you are wise for yourself; if you scorn, you alone will bear it and pay the penalty.13 The foolish woman is noisy; she is simple and open to all forms of evil, she [willfully and recklessly] knows nothing whatever [of eternal value].14 For she sits at the door of her house or on a seat in the conspicuous places of the town,15 Calling to those who pass by, who go uprightly on their way:16 Whoever is simple (wavering and easily led astray), let him turn in here! And as for him who lacks understanding, she says to him,17 Stolen waters (pleasures) are sweet [because they are forbidden]; and bread eaten in secret is pleasant. 18 But he knows not that the shades of the dead are there [specters haunting the scene of past transgressions], and that her invited guests are [already sunk] in the depths of Sheol (the lower world, Hades, the place of the dead).