THRIVE: The middle, the beginning, press towards the finish.


Well, it’s time again to decide how you will handle your midweek situation. Will it be a speed bump? Will it be a ramp to get you ahead? Will it be a blocker holding you back? The decision is up to you. Today is the beginning of ECNL Girls National Championship play with the opportunity for the local girls to win in their own state. So today be it at work, at home, in the office, or on the field, let’s choose to ask the Holy Spirit to lead and guide us! Let’s choose to ask the Holy Spirit to strengthen us and encourage us! Let’s choose to ask the Holy Spirit to be our advocate, our counselor, and our guide to help us live our lives to the full in order that we may thrive, living for the glory of God!

THRIVE
LIVING FOR THE GLORY OF GOD!

Today’s Verse of the Day:

‘ The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is insight. ‘

Proverbs 9:10

Today’s post from Be The Dads is Just For Dads: Be A Positive Christian Role Model – Day 21


Where are you at today? What is your perspective? How will you choose to see things? How will you adjust your perspective? Invite Jesus into your heart! Invite Jesus into your life! Allow the Holy Spirit to lead and guide you!

If you pray today’s prayer with me feel free to let me know so I can pray with you and for you too. (If you don’t feel comfortable leaving a comment then you can always try email.

Let’s Pray!

Prayer Of Salvation
"Oh Father God, I believe with all of my heart that Jesus died on the cross for my sake and has risen from the dead. Lord, I receive Your Word and I repent of my sins. I renounce the past. Come into my heart, Lord Jesus. I receive my forgiveness. I receive the new birth, cleansed and washed in the Word and in the precious blood of Jesus. Fill me with Your Spirit, in Jesus' name. Amen."

THRIVE: Another great week begins…


It’s Monday already, where has the time gone. After a weekend of excitement and travel, it’s time to prepare for a new work week. An exciting new week is kicking off with some great opportunities to collaborate with partner teams, onboard a college intern, and continue to work on helping move the product development, features, and requirements forward. Every week there is something exciting to make each week a great week with great managers, peers, and partners. Oh, what a week we will have!


TODAY’S VERSE OF THE DAY:

‘Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. ‘

James 4:7

Today’s post from Be The Dads is
Popular – Day 6


Are you ready for today? Are you ready to spur others on today? Are you ready to encourage others today? Are you ready to invite Jesus into your heart? Are you ready to invite Jesus into your situation? Are you ready to ask the Holy Spirit for wisdom and discernment to help you? Are you ready to make today great?

If you pray today’s prayer with me feel free to let me know so I can pray with you and for you too. (If you don’t feel comfortable leaving a comment then you can always try email.

Let’s Pray!

Prayer Of Salvation
"Oh Father God, I believe with all of my heart that Jesus died on the cross for my sake and has risen from the dead. Lord, I receive Your Word and I repent of my sins. I renounce the past. Come into my heart, Lord Jesus. I receive my forgiveness. I receive the new birth, cleansed and washed in the Word and in the precious blood of Jesus. Fill me with Your Spirit, in Jesus' name. Amen."

THRIVE: Days of finishes and days of new beginnings…


As I reflect on the last 18+ years and how the time is fast approaching with events like senior proms and last club soccer games the reality of a new beginning is surfacing. As the second of three approaches the time of leaving the nest the incredible times when they were all younger start flashing through my mind. Be it the incredible life of my oldest to the incredible life of my middle to the incredible life of my youngest, God has blessed me beyond measure. When I consider how God moved us, God called us, and God has been blessing us I am in awe. When you read scripture verses like:

‘Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the Lord Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it.’

Malachi 3:10

God is so good! God is so faithful! The blessings have been so great that they are overflowing as my kids grow up and step out into the world. To see God working and shaping them. To see God calling and sending them. To see God’s hand upon them in all they do. To see the character and integrity. To see the boldness and courageousness. God is worth trusting! God is worth testing when He offers it up to you! God is with asking when you need wisdom and discernment!

Do you trust God? Do you believe His Word is true? Do you want to be like the dad in the story when Jesus asked if he believed?

‘When they came to the other disciples, they saw a large crowd around them and the teachers of the law arguing with them. As soon as all the people saw Jesus, they were overwhelmed with wonder and ran to greet him. “What are you arguing with them about?” he asked. A man in the crowd answered, “Teacher, I brought you my son, who is possessed by a spirit that has robbed him of speech. Whenever it seizes him, it throws him to the ground. He foams at the mouth, gnashes his teeth and becomes rigid. I asked your disciples to drive out the spirit, but they could not.” “You unbelieving generation,” Jesus replied, “how long shall I stay with you? How long shall I put up with you? Bring the boy to me.” So they brought him. When the spirit saw Jesus, it immediately threw the boy into a convulsion. He fell to the ground and rolled around, foaming at the mouth. Jesus asked the boy’s father, “How long has he been like this?” “From childhood,” he answered. “It has often thrown him into fire or water to kill him. But if you can do anything, take pity on us and help us.” “ ‘If you can’?” said Jesus. “Everything is possible for one who believes.” Immediately the boy’s father exclaimed, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!” When Jesus saw that a crowd was running to the scene, he rebuked the impure spirit. “You deaf and mute spirit,” he said, “I command you, come out of him and never enter him again.” The spirit shrieked, convulsed him violently and came out. The boy looked so much like a corpse that many said, “He’s dead.” But Jesus took him by the hand and lifted him to his feet, and he stood up. After Jesus had gone indoors, his disciples asked him privately, “Why couldn’t we drive it out?” He replied, “This kind can come out only by prayer.” ‘

Mark 9:14-29

Do you want to experience a miracle? It takes believing! Even if your faith is small and new, faith the size of a mustard seed can make things happen!

‘When they came to the crowd, a man approached Jesus and knelt before him. “Lord, have mercy on my son,” he said. “He has seizures and is suffering greatly. He often falls into the fire or into the water. I brought him to your disciples, but they could not heal him.” “You unbelieving and perverse generation,” Jesus replied, “how long shall I stay with you? How long shall I put up with you? Bring the boy here to me.” Jesus rebuked the demon, and it came out of the boy, and he was healed at that moment. Then the disciples came to Jesus in private and asked, “Why couldn’t we drive it out?” He replied, “Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.” ‘

Matthew 17:14-20

So today, even as we see a phase coming to a close let’s hold tight to God and trust Him to be with and go with them as the next phase of the journey begins. Let’s choose to live for the glory of God and thrive!

THRIVE 
LIVING FOR THE GLORY OF GOD

TODAY’S VERSE OF THE DAY:

‘Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.’

Hebrews 4:16

Today’s post from Be The Dads is
Popular – Day 4


Are you ready for today? This is the day that the Lord has made so will you rejoice and be glad in it? Are you ready? Are you believing? Are you trusting? Are you moving? Will you invite Jesus into your heart today to help you? Will you invite Jesus into your life and situation to help you?

If you pray today’s prayer with me feel free to let me know so I can pray with you and for you too. (If you don’t feel comfortable leaving a comment then you can always try email.

Let’s Pray!

Prayer Of Salvation
"Oh Father God, I believe with all of my heart that Jesus died on the cross for my sake and has risen from the dead. Lord, I receive Your Word and I repent of my sins. I renounce the past. Come into my heart, Lord Jesus. I receive my forgiveness. I receive the new birth, cleansed and washed in the Word and in the precious blood of Jesus. Fill me with Your Spirit, in Jesus' name. Amen."

THRIVE: A New Chapter Begins…


As I prepare for this day and think of the week that is about to begin I am excited by the opportunity to join a new team of people and work on some exciting new tech. The part of the team I met before accepting to join was incredible and I look forward to working closely with all of them and getting to meet many others I haven’t met yet. God opened a door to a new opportunity as a sign for a time to change. God provided affirmation of the decision and as I start my first day I look forward to getting to see what God is going to do in and through my time here.

As the previous chapter is behind me and I am thankful for the time, the opportunities, and most of all the people. I had the honor and pleasure of receiving the most incredible welcome when I joined and continued my part in making sure as many people as I could get welcomed into the company while I was there, showing up at the reception desk to try and catch and welcome the new people on Mondays and helping them feel like they were already a part of the team. I got to meet people at all levels of the company and from all areas who were going to get to work from the office. As I closed out the chapter, the last day wasn’t what I had hoped as thanks to COVID and so many people working from home there were very few people around and so many of the interactions had to be done virtually either through Slack or Zoom. Wishing them all the best into the future and that God’s light that was shining there will continue even with me having left. Praying that the Happy Today’s will help them to smile, spread the joy and be a team that encourages one another and works towards providing the customers the best experience possible.

As we get started today we need to grab onto the reality of what is taking place. Like the writers of the gospels, we need to slow down and capture the details of what this week is about. The fact that one-third of the gospels is about the last week of Jesus’s life means we need to take time to absorb it, understand it, and celebrate what it means for us today. Let’s consider making time to read the passion week story from each of the four gospels so that we are ready for Good Friday and to step into Easter aka Resurrection weekend. This is the day that the Lord has made, so let us rejoice and be glad in it!


Verse of the Day:

‘Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death— even death on a cross! ‘

Philippians 2:6-8

Today’s post from Be The Dads is The Heart Of The Father – Day 3


So where are you today? Are you in a place where you need restoration? Are you in a place where you need a reconciliation? Are you in a place where you need healing? Are you in a place where you need compassion? Are you in a place where you need love? Are you in a place where you need hope? Then today is the day you need to invite Jesus into your heart and your life!

If you pray today’s prayer with me feel free to let me know so I can pray with you and for you too. (If you don’t feel comfortable leaving a comment then you can always try email or text.

Let’s Pray!

Dear God, I know that I am a sinner and there is nothing that I can do to save myself. I confess my complete helplessness to forgive my own sin or to work my way to heaven. At this moment I trust Christ alone as the One who bore my sin when He died on the cross. I believe that He did all that will ever be necessary for me to stand in your holy presence. I thank you that Christ was raised from the dead as a guarantee of my own resurrection. As best as I can, I now transfer my trust to Him. I am grateful that He has promised to receive me despite my many sins and failures. Father, I take you at your word. I thank you that I can face death now that you are my Savior. Thank you for the assurance that you will walk with me through the deep valley. Thank you for hearing this prayer. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.

Do you see the full picture?


When you consider what is taking place around you are you seeing it from the right perspective? When you weigh out the mandates versus person rights what picture are you seeing? When you drill to the core of the matter are you seeing it is rational, it is logical, it is political, it is spiritual, it is preparing in an effort to be able to control, it is setting in motion a way to control both producers and consumers, it is manipulating God-given freedoms by man-made rules, it is trying to wipe out, deplete, exhaust, and use up, … Are you seeing the full picture? Are you seeing it from various perspectives? Are you understanding the full picture?

Ever heard of a one-world government? Ever heard of a world where you need to have a mark in order to participate in buying goods and running businesses? Ever wondered what it would take to get people mentally prepared to accept such a concept? Ever considered what it might look like to get people to participate in a system that requires you to show some proof in order to buy goods and sell goods? Do you realize that the mark is something you get to willingly choose to receive? Do you think you would make the conscious choice to receive the mark? Do you realize the consequences of rejecting or declining to get the mark? It is death. Are you aware? Are you prepared? Are you ready? Are you willing? Can you identify it? Have you been numbed to the point where you will miss it and the risk or outcome that is associated with it?

Are you seeking the truth? Do you believe there is such thing as absolute truth? Do you believe there was a beginning? Do you believe there will be an end? Do you rebelieve there is an in-between which we are living today? How are these beliefs impacting the way you are living your life today? Are you building your life on a firm foundation? Are you well rooted so that even when the waves or the wind come you will be able to stand your ground? Are you fully prepared by having put on the right equipment to sustain you and strengthen you?

Before we jump into today’s devotional, let’s check in on 3 scriptures to reflect on:

‘Then I saw another beast rising up out of the earth; he had two horns like a lamb and he spoke like a dragon. He exercises all the authority of the first beast in his presence [when the two are together]. And he makes the earth and those who inhabit it worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed. He performs great signs (awe-inspiring acts), even making fire fall from the sky to the earth, right before peoples’ eyes. And he deceives those [unconverted ones] who inhabit the earth [into believing him] because of the signs which he is given [by Satan] to perform in the presence of the [first] beast, telling those who inhabit the earth to make an image to the beast who was wounded [fatally] by the sword and has come back to life. And he is given power to give breath to the image of the beast, so that the image of the beast will even [appear to] speak, and cause those who do not bow down and worship the image of the beast to be put to death. Also he compels all, the small and the great, and the rich and the poor, and the free men and the slaves, to be given a mark on their right hand or on their forehead [signifying allegiance to the beast], and that no one will be able to buy or sell, except the one who has the mark, either the name of the beast or the number of his name. Here is wisdom. Let the person who has enough insight calculate the number of the beast, for it is the [imperfect] number of a man; and his number is six hundred and sixty-six.’

Revelation 13:11-18

‘Then another angel, a third one, followed them, saying with a loud voice, “Whoever worships the beast and his image and receives the mark [of the beast] on his forehead or on his hand, he too will [have to] drink of the wine of the wrath of God, mixed undiluted into the cup of His anger; and he will be tormented with fire and brimstone (flaming sulfur) in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb (Christ). And the smoke of their torment ascends forever and ever; and they have no rest day and night—those who worship the beast and his image, and whoever receives the mark of his name.” Here is [encouragement for] the steadfast endurance of the saints (God’s people), those who habitually keep God’s commandments and their faith in Jesus. Then I heard [the distinct words of] a voice from heaven, saying, “Write, ‘ Blessed (happy, prosperous, to be admired) are the dead who die in the Lord from now on!’ ” “Yes, [blessed indeed],” says the Spirit, “so that they may rest and have relief from their labors, for their deeds do follow them.” ‘

Revelation 14:9-13

‘ “But when the Son of Man comes in His glory and majesty and all the angels with Him, then He will sit on the throne of His glory. All the nations will be gathered before Him [for judgment]; and He will separate them from one another, as a shepherd separates his sheep from the goats; and He will put the sheep on His right [the place of honor], and the goats on His left [the place of rejection]. “Then the King will say to those on His right, ‘Come, you blessed of My Father [you favored of God, appointed to eternal salvation], inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in; I was naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me [with help and ministering care]; I was in prison, and you came to Me [ignoring personal danger].’ Then the righteous will answer Him, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, and feed You, or thirsty, and give You something to drink? And when did we see You as a stranger, and invite You in, or naked, and clothe You? And when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ The King will answer and say to them, ‘I assure you and most solemnly say to you, to the extent that you did it for one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it for Me.’ “Then He will say to those on His left, ‘Leave Me, you cursed ones, into the eternal fire which has been prepared for the devil and his angels (demons); for I was hungry, and you gave Me nothing to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me nothing to drink; I was a stranger, and you did not invite Me in; naked, and you did not clothe Me; sick, and in prison, and you did not visit Me [with help and ministering care].’ Then they also [in their turn] will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, or thirsty, or as a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister to You?’ Then He will reply to them, ‘I assure you and most solemnly say to you, to the extent that you did not do it for one of the least of these [my followers], you did not do it for Me.’ Then these [unbelieving people] will go away into eternal (unending) punishment, but those who are righteous and in right standing with God [will go, by His remarkable grace] into eternal (unending) life.”’

Matthew 25:31-46

‘ “Beware of the false prophets, [teachers] who come to you dressed as sheep [appearing gentle and innocent], but inwardly are ravenous wolves. By their fruit you will recognize them [that is, by their contrived doctrine and self-focus]. Do people pick grapes from thorn bushes or figs from thistles? Even so, every healthy tree bears good fruit, but the unhealthy tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Therefore, by their fruit you will recognize them [as false prophets]. “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven. Many will say to Me on that day [when I judge them], ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, and driven out demons in Your name, and done many miracles in Your name?’ And then I will declare to them publicly, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me [you are banished from My presence], you who act wickedly [disregarding My commands].’ “So everyone who hears these words of Mine and acts on them, will be like a wise man [a far-sighted, practical, and sensible man] who built his house on the rock. And the rain fell, and the floods and torrents came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock. And everyone who hears these words of Mine and does not do them, will be like a foolish (stupid) man who built his house on the sand. And the rain fell, and the floods and torrents came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and it fell—and great and complete was its fall.” When Jesus had finished [speaking] these words [on the mountain], the crowds were astonished and overwhelmed at His teaching; for He was teaching them as one who had authority [to teach entirely of His own volition], and not as their scribes [who relied on others to confirm their authority].’

Matthew 7:15-29

‘In conclusion, be strong in the Lord [draw your strength from Him and be empowered through your union with Him] and in the power of His [boundless] might. Put on the full armor of God [for His precepts are like the splendid armor of a heavily-armed soldier], so that you may be able to [successfully] stand up against all the schemes and the strategies and the deceits of the devil. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood [contending only with physical opponents], but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this [present] darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly (supernatural) places. Therefore, put on the complete armor of God, so that you will be able to [successfully] resist and stand your ground in the evil day [of danger], and having done everything [that the crisis demands], to stand firm [in your place, fully prepared, immovable, victorious]. So stand firm and hold your ground, having tightened the wide band of truth (personal integrity, moral courage) around your waist and having put on the breastplate of righteousness (an upright heart), and having strapped on your feet the gospel of peace in preparation [to face the enemy with firm-footed stability and the readiness produced by the good news]. Above all, lift up the [protective] shield of faith with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God. With all prayer and petition pray [with specific requests] at all times [on every occasion and in every season] in the Spirit, and with this in view, stay alert with all perseverance and petition [interceding in prayer] for all God’s people. ‘

Ephesians 6:10-18

THE ONE YEAR DAILY INSIGHTS 
WITH ZIG ZIGLAR AND DR. IKE REIGHARD
FOR NOVEMBER 27TH


He Made It All


MEMORY VERSE OF THE DAY:

‘All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. ‘

John 1:3

Let’s expand on today’s verse to get more context of what is being said and use the Amplified version to help us too.

‘In the beginning [before all time] was the Word ( Christ), and the Word was with God, and the Word was God Himself. He was [continually existing] in the beginning [co-eternally] with God. All things were made and came into existence through Him; and without Him not even one thing was made that has come into being. In Him was life [and the power to bestow life], and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines on in the darkness, and the darkness did not understand it or overpower it or appropriate it or absorb it [and is unreceptive to it]. ‘

John 1:1-5

POINTS FROM THE DEVOTIONAL:
  • Imagine having gotten to be there and seen the story and humanity of Jesus’s life on earth.
  • Imagine having gotten to be one of His disciples and experience the divinity of Jesus’s time on earth.
  • Are you able to take hold of both of those areas of Jesus? His humanity and His divinity?
  • Are you able to grasp the combination of the one who was born in a manger and gave up His life on the cross and everything in between along with the reality that He is the same one who created everything and existed before the creation of the earth?
  • Is your faith able to hold tight to both of these areas in order to help it grow and develop?
  • Is your trust in God great because you have been able to grab hold of and allow Jesus’s humanity and divinity to amaze you?
  • Is your hope grown because of God’s love being so great as to come to the earth and make a way that we couldn’t have made for ourselves?
  • Is your faith growing by the reality that God loves you so much that He came to the earth in order to connect with us on our level?
  • Is your trust in God greater because He was willing to go through such pain and suffering and death for you?
  • Did Jesus’s willingness to stand up for us make you trust Him more?
  • Did Jesus’s life on earth help you to connect and realize how much He really gets what you are going through?
  • Did Jesus’s life on earth help you to realize how much He loves you?
  • Are you filled with hope because you know Jesus isn’t limited by time or space or even a human body?
  • Is the reality that all things are possible with God give you hope for today?
  • Is the reality that Jesus’s power is infinite give you hope for today?
  • Is the reality that Jesus’s knowledge is complete give you hope for today?
  • Is the reality that Jesus’s is present everywhere give you hope for today?
  • Let’s grab hold of the reality of Jesus’s humanity and divinity in order to live today with joy and hope!
  • Let’s grab hold of the reality of Jesus’s humanity and divinity in order to live today with faith!

DISCUSSION TOPICS FROM TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL:
  • What amazes you about Christ’s humanity? about His divinity?
  • How is your faith challenged and strengthened by both of these traits?

QUOTE(S) FROM TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL:

“All I have seen teaches me to trust the Creator I have not seen.”

Ralph Waldo Emerson

“Time in the civilized world is measured by His birth. It’s either BC or AD. This is proper because He is Alpha and Omega–the beginning and the end.”

Zig Ziglar

Today’s reading from Tanakh:


So where are you at today? Do you believe in a creator? Do you believe in a redeemer? Do you believe in a savior? Do you believe in anything or anyone? Are you looking for answers and direction? Are you ready to get started today? Let’s pray:

Heavenly Father 
I come to you in prayer asking for the 
forgiveness of my Sins. I confess with my 
mouth and believe with my heart that 
Jesus is your Son, And that he died on the 
Cross at Calvary that I might be forgiven. 
and have Eternal Life in the Kingdom of 
Heaven. Father, I believe that Jesus rose 
from the dead and I ask you right now to 
come in to my life and be my personal 
Lord and Savior. I repent of my Sins and 
will Worship you all the day's of my Life!
Because your word is truth, I confess with 
my mouth that I am Born Again and 
Cleansed by the Blood of Jesus! In Jesus 
Name, Amen
Heavenly Father
I come to you in prayer asking for the
forgiveness of my Sins. I confess with my
mouth and believe with my heart that
Jesus is your Son, And that he died on the
Cross at Calvary that I might be forgiven.
and have Eternal Life in the Kingdom of
Heaven. Father, I believe that Jesus rose
from the dead and I ask you right now to
come in to my life and be my personal
Lord and Savior. I repent of my Sins and
will Worship you all the day’s of my Life!
Because your word is truth, I confess with
my mouth that I am Born Again and
Cleansed by the Blood of Jesus! In Jesus
Name, Amen

Did you pray with me?
Would you be willing to leave me a comment so that I can pray with and for you about such an incredible decision?

Or if you don’t feel comfortable leaving a comment on my blog, why not email or text me instead?


How does the way you start your day set the tone for how you will live it out? Ready to get your day launched right?


Do you have a wake up routine? Do you have a flow or process you go through? Does it vary? Does any variation in the flow or process impact the way you live out that day? Are there parts of your start that are non-negotiable? Are there parts of your beginning that if missed or changed will impact your state of mind or behavior during the rest of your day?

For me, I know I pray for my family and for my day before I get out of my bed. I thank God for this new day and for everything that will be in it. I thank God and pray for my wife and her day and everything that will be in it. I thank God for each of my kids and pray for each of them and their day and everything that will be in it. I thank God for my parents and my sister and pray for each of them and their day and everything that will be in it. I thank God for my mother-in-law and brother-in-law and pray for each of them and their day and everything that will be in it. Then I lift up my day to God and ask that He grant me wisdom and discernment to make it through well as well as for Him to take my schedule and adjust it as He sees fit to help me get His plans and purposes done in and through my life on this day. This is a key and important part of my day getting started.

Another part of the key element of my day is turning to God’s Word. Be it through a reading plan, a devotional, or something else that God has put on my heart, I turn to that to help get filled up for the day in order to be able to overflow God’s love, mercy, and grace into all the people He will bring into my life on that day. Once I complete my reading and post to my blog, share the post on social media in order to speak life and hope to all those God has put into my life and connected me to over social media platforms. I tend to take a few moments to wish people happy birthday, happy anniversary, or pray over prayer requests before getting up and getting for the my day. Prayed up! Read up! Filled up! And now this new day, my TODAY, the day that the Lord has made, is ready to start filled with joy for the joy of the Lord is my strength and so I can live out my TODAY as a Happy Today!

How about you? How does the way you start your day set the tone for how you will live it out?


The One Year Daily Insights with Zig Ziglar and Dr. Ike Reighard
for September 26th


Start Each Day Right


MEMORY VERSE OF THE DAY:

‘This is the day the Lord has made; We will rejoice and be glad in it.’

Psalms 118:24

POINTS FROM THE DEVOTIONAL:
  • Is there anything that is holding you back?
  • Is there anything that is causing you to hesitate as you start your today?
  • Is there something that is a barrier or blocker to getting off the starting block this morning?
  • Is there something that is keeping you from being able to launch into your today?
  • Dead-end job? Strained relationship? Empty feeling?
  • Is there anything keeping you from leaping out of bed and into your today?
  • Is there something you are dreading about your today?
  • Ready for a change of perspective?
  • Ready to change those barriers or blockers?
  • Let’s stop focusing on how big the issue, the barrier, the blocker, or something else and instead let’s start to focus on how big our God is!
  • Let’s start to focus on how with God all things are possible!
  • Let’s start to focus on how nothing is impossible with God!
  • Let’s start to focus on how the day belongs to God and start rejoicing in it!
  • Let’s start out our day without barriers or blockers but with the infinite possibilities comes from a relationship with Jesus!
  • Can you imagine being one of Jesus’s disciples and how they must have felt waking up with Jesus there with them and the wonder and excitement of what that day was going to be?
  • Jesus is with us today! So we don’t need to dread our today!
  • Let’s start our day with the same awe and wonder they would have had having breakfast with Jesus wondering what amazing thing they would see and so what amazing thing we will see in our today!
  • Are you ready for the fantastic day God has prepared for you to live out today?
  • Can you feel the excitement building and the energy filling you up as you consider what miracles Jesus will be doing in, through, and with you today?
  • He made today! So let’s make it count!
  • He made today! So let’s rejoice in it!
  • He made today! So let’s be prepared to accomplish the good works He has prepared in advance for us to accomplish!
  • Are you ready to experience His presence today?
  • Are you ready to experience His plans today?
  • Let’s receive and accept this gift from God called today!
  • Let’s rejoice and be glad in it!
  • Let’s be ready and aware sot hat we won’t miss the work He will do in us, through us, and around us!
  • Let’s rejoice and be glad in it!

DISCUSSION TOPICS FROM TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL:
  • What would it have been like to be one of the disciples and watch Jesus every day?
  • How does it affect your attitude about today to realize that you walk with the risen Christ and that today is His gift to you?

QUOTE(S) FROM TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL:

“I’m convinced that millions of people today don’t know the Lord because of the long-faced, poor, suffering-little-me, self-sacrificing, tell-everybody-all-their-troubles Christians who act like their second birth was just as painful to them as their first one was to their mothers.”

Zig Ziglar

Today’s reading from Tanakh:


So where are you at today? How did you start your day? Are you ready to restart, get refueled, get refilled, and start overflowing love to the world around you? Are you ready to start being filled up by the source? Why not get it started today! Let’s pray:

Heavenly Father 
I come to you in prayer asking for the 
forgiveness of my Sins. I confess with my 
mouth and believe with my heart that 
Jesus is your Son, And that he died on the 
Cross at Calvary that I might be forgiven. 
and have Eternal Life in the Kingdom of 
Heaven. Father, I believe that Jesus rose 
from the dead and I ask you right now to 
come in to my life and be my personal 
Lord and Savior. I repent of my Sins and 
will Worship you all the day's of my Life!
Because your word is truth, I confess with 
my mouth that I am Born Again and 
Cleansed by the Blood of Jesus! In Jesus 
Name, Amen
Heavenly Father
I come to you in prayer asking for the
forgiveness of my Sins. I confess with my
mouth and believe with my heart that
Jesus is your Son, And that he died on the
Cross at Calvary that I might be forgiven.
and have Eternal Life in the Kingdom of
Heaven. Father, I believe that Jesus rose
from the dead and I ask you right now to
come in to my life and be my personal
Lord and Savior. I repent of my Sins and
will Worship you all the day’s of my Life!
Because your word is truth, I confess with
my mouth that I am Born Again and
Cleansed by the Blood of Jesus! In Jesus
Name, Amen

Did you pray with me?
Would you be willing to leave me a comment so that I can pray with and for you about such an incredible decision?

Or if you don’t feel comfortable leaving a comment on my blog, why not email or text me instead?


New Beginnings…Decisions that will impact the rest of your life…


After Easter there are many who have a new beginning. After Easter there are many that have made a decision that will transform the rest of their lives. After Easter many have had an encounter with the power of the resurrection and what that means and says about Jesus and about themselves. After Easter many have decided to believe rather than live in disbelief. After Easter many hearts have been opened and the purification process is beginning. After Easter and the realization of Jesus’s sacrifice for all of humanity to pay the ultimate price because that is the only thing that would be able to satisfy God’s character and make a way for us to be forgiven and reconciled to God. After Easter and the realize that Jesus isn’t in the tomb but He was resurrected, conquered the power of sin and death, and has opened the door into eternity with God for those who will choose to believe.

It’s Monday, the start of the work week. Consider the decisions that you will make and their impact on the rest of your life. It’s not too late! Our words, our actions, and our responses make a difference and so today let’s choose wisely in order to have a Happy Monday!


The One Year Daily Insights with Zig Ziglar and Dr. Ike Reighard 
for April 5th


“Why have you forsaken me”


MEMORY VERSE OF THE DAY: Matthew 27:46

‘And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, “Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?” that is, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?”’


POINTS FROM THE DEVOTIONAL:
  • The story of the cross
  • Jesus was more than just a good man who died for his beliefs
  • Jesus was more than just a soldier who died for the people around him
  • Jesus was more than a martyr
  • Jesus was more than a teacher
  • Jesus was Almighty God!
  • Jesus is Almighty God who stepped out of heaven and came humbly to the earth for a specific purpose that only He could achieve
  • Jesus came that we could be saved! redeemed! transformed!
  • Jesus took our place for our sins on the cross
  • For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
  • The weight of the world was on His shoulders, the weight of every sin, yours, mine, and everyone else’s
  • He took on the penalty in order to make a way for us to be reconciled to God
  • He took on the penalty so that we could have the choice and the opportunity to accept Him and receive God’s grace
  • When He gave up His life (that’s right gave up, nobody took it from Him) He finished the work He had come to do
  • God stepped away as Jesus took on all the sins of the world and receive the punishment that we deserved, poured out on Jesus
  • Jesus took on all the wrath, the judgment, and the penalty for every sin that was nailed to the cross with Jesus
  • The only way it could happen was for God to step away and allow it
  • It was finished though when Jesus gave up his last breath and sealed the victory by paying the price
  • Three days later Jesus rose again, defeating sin and death, with the resurrection power
  • Jesus gave His life for us on the cross to make a way when there didn’t seem to be a way
  • Jesus took it on all alone, abandoned and condemned for you and me.

DISCUSSION TOPICS FROM TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL:
What do you think that moment was like for Jesus?
  • Painful
  • Sad
  • Lonely
What does it tell you about His grace and His love for you?
  • God’s grace is enough!
  • God’s love is so great that He gave Jesus that we could be saved.
  • Jesus didn’t come so that we would be condemned but rather that though Him the world could be saved!

QUOTE(S) FROM TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL:

The only question Jesus ever asked God is `Why have you forsaken me?’ This is the same question most every believer asks at some point in their spiritual journey.”

Ike Reighard

Today’s reading from Tanakh:


Where are you at today? Are you looking for guidance? Are you wondering where to turn? Are you at the end of your rope and needing help? Are you ready for some help? Are you ready to turn to God and ask? seek? knock? Let’s pray together.

Heavenly Father 
I come to you in prayer asking for the 
forgiveness of my Sins. I confess with my 
mouth and believe with my heart that 
Jesus is your Son, And that he died on the 
Cross at Calvary that I might be forgiven. 
and have Eternal Life in the Kingdom of 
Heaven. Father, I believe that Jesus rose 
from the dead and I ask you right now to 
come in to my life and be my personal 
Lord and Savior. I repent of my Sins and 
will Worship you all the day's of my Life!
Because your word is truth, I confess with 
my mouth that I am Born Again and 
Cleansed by the Blood of Jesus! In Jesus 
Name, Amen
Heavenly Father
I come to you in prayer asking for the
forgiveness of my Sins. I confess with my
mouth and believe with my heart that
Jesus is your Son, And that he died on the
Cross at Calvary that I might be forgiven.
and have Eternal Life in the Kingdom of
Heaven. Father, I believe that Jesus rose
from the dead and I ask you right now to
come in to my life and be my personal
Lord and Savior. I repent of my Sins and
will Worship you all the day’s of my Life!
Because your word is truth, I confess with
my mouth that I am Born Again and
Cleansed by the Blood of Jesus! In Jesus
Name, Amen

Did you pray with me?
Would you be willing to leave me a comment so that I can pray with and for you about such an incredible decision?

Or if you don’t feel comfortable leaving a comment on my blog, why not email or text me instead?

Did you pray with me?
Would you be willing to leave me a comment so that I can pray with and for you about such an incredible decision?

Or if you don’t feel comfortable leaving a comment on my blog, why not email or text me instead?


Thankful this New Year’s Eve!


Has this been a fun year? No. Has this been an enjoyable year? No. Have there been trials? Yes. Have there been troubles? Yes. Have there been challenges? Yes. Have there been trials? Yes. Have there been shake ups and shake downs to try to destabilize me? Yes. Have the challenges and the struggles slowed down or stopped? Nope. Even as I sit here on the eve of a new year, there are many open questions for what is yet to come.

But in the midst of all that there has been so much to be thankful for this new year’s eve that will start my second semi-centennial. I got more time to be with my family as so much of the world shutdown for a while. My wife and I started a routine of reading a devotional and then praying for each other each night after dinner. God’s opened up new doors of communication where I am able to speak to people from around the country and around the world. God’s opened doors for me to have conversations most mornings with other men and share life together. God’s even opened the door for me to be able to connect and pour into on evening a week too. God has provided for the needs of my family. God has protected my family as they come and go. God is love! God is light! My hope is built on nothing less that Jesus’s blood and righteousness! My faith allows me to know this is not the end but as each day goes by it draws us closer to His return. I have learned the importance of love! I have learned how important it is to allow God’s love to fill me up in order that I can overflow into the world around me. There are so many things to be thankful for!

I continue to learn from the lessons of the past in order to press forward towards the prize which Jesus has prepared and put before me. I continue to celebrate all that God has done and continues to do to help me through each day. I continue to lean on Him rather than my own understanding so that I won’t be in despair from the attacks of the enemy. I continue to pray believing for God’s wisdom and discernment so that the Holy Spirit can be my comforter and my guide, leading me through each day.

Happy New Year’s Eve of my second semicentennial!


Today’s verse of the day comes to us from Philippians 4:13 and says:

13 I can do all things [which He has called me to do] through Him who strengthens and empowers me [to fulfill His purpose—I am self-sufficient in Christ’s sufficiency; I am ready for anything and equal to anything through Him who infuses me with inner strength and confident peace.]

— Philippians 4:13

With September in the rearview mirror how will you live out your today?
With September in the rearview mirror how will you live out your today? T-1 day till we will have October in the rearview mirror. T-1 day till a semicentennial will be in the rearview mirror. It is interesting to consider the first 30 against the last 20 and all that has taken place in the last 20 with God as the focal point, as the center, so that the chord of with Him in the middle has been so much stronger in helping me in and through life. How in the last 20 I have seen lives transformed including my own. I have seen incredible children grow up into incredible human beings who love God and serve people. How God was able to speak to me daily through His Word about where I am at, not to give up, and press in and press on for the glory of His kingdom. They say hindsight is 2020 and it has revealed to me that I still have more to learn and more growing to do. It has revealed to me the importance of have God at the center of the house and the impact it makes not only in my hope but beyond as it extends to work, to the community, to the next generation. So as I reflect on the past, I am excited for the future because I know that God is in control and that He will give me strength to complete the good works He has prepared in advance for me to accomplish. So let’s learn form the past and press forward today! Let’s make the most of today because we don’t know what tomorrow will bring but we do know that today will be more than enough to deal with.

The 49 week challenge
Day 304

Want to join me in the challenge? Click Day 304 link to join me and sign up. It is never too late. The 49 week challenge has 6 days in which to notice a promise to trust, a command to obey, a truth to embrace, a warning to heed, or an encouragement to rest in and 1 day to reflect on what you’re learning and to share it with others, to think back over the week’s readings, to see connections between the various passages of the week. Each day we have time to talk to God and contemplate what is being said through His Word, and even more so on the 7th day.

How interested are you in what will happen today? How interested are you in what will be required of you today? How interested are you in what decisions you will need to make today? How interested are you in hearing from God today? How interested are you in accomplishing what God is calling you to do today? What if it were life and death decision? What if it were everlasting life and everlasting death decision? What if the decision that you make today will determine how you will spend the rest of eternity? Would it make a difference?

If you are interested in getting together or sharing the information together, please let me know through the comment section below, through email, or even through text messages.


Today’s reading
from GOD’S WORD–THE BIBLE:

My Notes:

  • ‘Dear friends, this is now my second letter to you. I have written both of them as reminders to stimulate you to wholesome thinking. I want you to recall the words spoken in the past by the holy prophets and the command given by our Lord and Savior through your apostles. Above all, you must understand that in the last days scoffers will come, scoffing and following their own evil desires. They will say, “Where is this ‘coming’ he promised? Ever since our ancestors died, everything goes on as it has since the beginning of creation.” But they deliberately forget that long ago by God’s word the heavens came into being and the earth was formed out of water and by water. By these waters also the world of that time was deluged and destroyed. By the same word the present heavens and earth are reserved for fire, being kept for the day of judgment and destruction of the ungodly. But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. But the day of the Lord will come like a thief. The heavens will disappear with a roar; the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything done in it will be laid bare. Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be? You ought to live holy and godly lives as you look forward to the day of God and speed its coming. That day will bring about the destruction of the heavens by fire, and the elements will melt in the heat. But in keeping with his promise we are looking forward to a new heaven and a new earth, where righteousness dwells. So then, dear friends, since you are looking forward to this, make every effort to be found spotless, blameless and at peace with him. Bear in mind that our Lord’s patience means salvation, just as our dear brother Paul also wrote you with the wisdom that God gave him. He writes the same way in all his letters, speaking in them of these matters. His letters contain some things that are hard to understand, which ignorant and unstable people distort, as they do the other Scriptures, to their own destruction. Therefore, dear friends, since you have been forewarned, be on your guard so that you may not be carried away by the error of the lawless and fall from your secure position. But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and forever! Amen.’ — 2 Peter 3:1-18
  • ‘Be merciful to me, my God, for my enemies are in hot pursuit; all day long they press their attack. My adversaries pursue me all day long; in their pride many are attacking me. When I am afraid, I put my trust in you. In God, whose word I praise— in God I trust and am not afraid. What can mere mortals do to me? All day long they twist my words; all their schemes are for my ruin. They conspire, they lurk, they watch my steps, hoping to take my life. Because of their wickedness do not let them escape; in your anger, God, bring the nations down. Record my misery; list my tears on your scroll — are they not in your record? Then my enemies will turn back when I call for help. By this I will know that God is for me. In God, whose word I praise, in the Lord , whose word I praise— in God I trust and am not afraid. What can man do to me? I am under vows to you, my God; I will present my thank offerings to you. For you have delivered me from death and my feet from stumbling, that I may walk before God in the light of life.’ — Psalms 56:1-13
  • ‘“Woe to the shepherds who are destroying and scattering the sheep of my pasture!” declares the Lord . Therefore this is what the Lord , the God of Israel, says to the shepherds who tend my people: “Because you have scattered my flock and driven them away and have not bestowed care on them, I will bestow punishment on you for the evil you have done,” declares the Lord . “I myself will gather the remnant of my flock out of all the countries where I have driven them and will bring them back to their pasture, where they will be fruitful and increase in number. I will place shepherds over them who will tend them, and they will no longer be afraid or terrified, nor will any be missing,” declares the Lord . “The days are coming,” declares the Lord , “when I will raise up for David a righteous Branch, a King who will reign wisely and do what is just and right in the land. In his days Judah will be saved and Israel will live in safety. This is the name by which he will be called: The Lord Our Righteous Savior. “So then, the days are coming,” declares the Lord , “when people will no longer say, ‘As surely as the Lord lives, who brought the Israelites up out of Egypt,’ but they will say, ‘As surely as the Lord lives, who brought the descendants of Israel up out of the land of the north and out of all the countries where he had banished them.’ Then they will live in their own land.” Concerning the prophets: My heart is broken within me; all my bones tremble. I am like a drunken man, like a strong man overcome by wine, because of the Lord and his holy words. The land is full of adulterers; because of the curse the land lies parched and the pastures in the wilderness are withered. The prophets follow an evil course and use their power unjustly. “Both prophet and priest are godless; even in my temple I find their wickedness,” declares the Lord . “Therefore their path will become slippery; they will be banished to darkness and there they will fall. I will bring disaster on them in the year they are punished,” declares the Lord . “Among the prophets of Samaria I saw this repulsive thing: They prophesied by Baal and led my people Israel astray. And among the prophets of Jerusalem I have seen something horrible: They commit adultery and live a lie. They strengthen the hands of evildoers, so that not one of them turns from their wickedness. They are all like Sodom to me; the people of Jerusalem are like Gomorrah.” Therefore this is what the Lord Almighty says concerning the prophets: “I will make them eat bitter food and drink poisoned water, because from the prophets of Jerusalem ungodliness has spread throughout the land.” This is what the Lord Almighty says: “Do not listen to what the prophets are prophesying to you; they fill you with false hopes. They speak visions from their own minds, not from the mouth of the Lord . They keep saying to those who despise me, ‘The Lord says: You will have peace.’ And to all who follow the stubbornness of their hearts they say, ‘No harm will come to you.’ But which of them has stood in the council of the Lord to see or to hear his word? Who has listened and heard his word? See, the storm of the Lord will burst out in wrath, a whirlwind swirling down on the heads of the wicked. The anger of the Lord will not turn back until he fully accomplishes the purposes of his heart. In days to come you will understand it clearly. I did not send these prophets, yet they have run with their message; I did not speak to them, yet they have prophesied. But if they had stood in my council, they would have proclaimed my words to my people and would have turned them from their evil ways and from their evil deeds. “Am I only a God nearby,” declares the Lord , “and not a God far away? Who can hide in secret places so that I cannot see them?” declares the Lord . “Do not I fill heaven and earth?” declares the Lord . “I have heard what the prophets say who prophesy lies in my name. They say, ‘I had a dream! I had a dream!’ How long will this continue in the hearts of these lying prophets, who prophesy the delusions of their own minds? They think the dreams they tell one another will make my people forget my name, just as their ancestors forgot my name through Baal worship. Let the prophet who has a dream recount the dream, but let the one who has my word speak it faithfully. For what has straw to do with grain?” declares the Lord . “Is not my word like fire,” declares the Lord , “and like a hammer that breaks a rock in pieces? “Therefore,” declares the Lord , “I am against the prophets who steal from one another words supposedly from me. Yes,” declares the Lord , “I am against the prophets who wag their own tongues and yet declare, ‘The Lord declares.’ Indeed, I am against those who prophesy false dreams,” declares the Lord . “They tell them and lead my people astray with their reckless lies, yet I did not send or appoint them. They do not benefit these people in the least,” declares the Lord . “When these people, or a prophet or a priest, ask you, ‘What is the message from the Lord ?’ say to them, ‘What message? I will forsake you, declares the Lord .’ If a prophet or a priest or anyone else claims, ‘This is a message from the Lord ,’ I will punish them and their household. This is what each of you keeps saying to your friends and other Israelites: ‘What is the Lord ’s answer?’ or ‘What has the Lord spoken?’ But you must not mention ‘a message from the Lord ’ again, because each one’s word becomes their own message. So you distort the words of the living God, the Lord Almighty, our God. This is what you keep saying to a prophet: ‘What is the Lord ’s answer to you?’ or ‘What has the Lord spoken?’ Although you claim, ‘This is a message from the Lord ,’ this is what the Lord says: You used the words, ‘This is a message from the Lord ,’ even though I told you that you must not claim, ‘This is a message from the Lord .’ Therefore, I will surely forget you and cast you out of my presence along with the city I gave to you and your ancestors. I will bring on you everlasting disgrace—everlasting shame that will not be forgotten.”’ — Jeremiah 23:1-40
  • ‘The word of the Lord came to me: “Son of man, you are living among a rebellious people. They have eyes to see but do not see and ears to hear but do not hear, for they are a rebellious people. “Therefore, son of man, pack your belongings for exile and in the daytime, as they watch, set out and go from where you are to another place. Perhaps they will understand, though they are a rebellious people. During the daytime, while they watch, bring out your belongings packed for exile. Then in the evening, while they are watching, go out like those who go into exile. While they watch, dig through the wall and take your belongings out through it. Put them on your shoulder as they are watching and carry them out at dusk. Cover your face so that you cannot see the land, for I have made you a sign to the Israelites.” So I did as I was commanded. During the day I brought out my things packed for exile. Then in the evening I dug through the wall with my hands. I took my belongings out at dusk, carrying them on my shoulders while they watched. In the morning the word of the Lord came to me: “Son of man, did not the Israelites, that rebellious people, ask you, ‘What are you doing?’ “Say to them, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: This prophecy concerns the prince in Jerusalem and all the Israelites who are there.’ Say to them, ‘I am a sign to you.’ “As I have done, so it will be done to them. They will go into exile as captives. “The prince among them will put his things on his shoulder at dusk and leave, and a hole will be dug in the wall for him to go through. He will cover his face so that he cannot see the land. I will spread my net for him, and he will be caught in my snare; I will bring him to Babylonia, the land of the Chaldeans, but he will not see it, and there he will die. I will scatter to the winds all those around him—his staff and all his troops—and I will pursue them with drawn sword. “They will know that I am the Lord , when I disperse them among the nations and scatter them through the countries. But I will spare a few of them from the sword, famine and plague, so that in the nations where they go they may acknowledge all their detestable practices. Then they will know that I am the Lord .” The word of the Lord came to me: “Son of man, tremble as you eat your food, and shudder in fear as you drink your water. Say to the people of the land: ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says about those living in Jerusalem and in the land of Israel: They will eat their food in anxiety and drink their water in despair, for their land will be stripped of everything in it because of the violence of all who live there. The inhabited towns will be laid waste and the land will be desolate. Then you will know that I am the Lord .’ ” The word of the Lord came to me: “Son of man, what is this proverb you have in the land of Israel: ‘The days go by and every vision comes to nothing’? Say to them, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: I am going to put an end to this proverb, and they will no longer quote it in Israel.’ Say to them, ‘The days are near when every vision will be fulfilled. For there will be no more false visions or flattering divinations among the people of Israel. But I the Lord will speak what I will, and it shall be fulfilled without delay. For in your days, you rebellious people, I will fulfill whatever I say, declares the Sovereign Lord .’ ” The word of the Lord came to me: “Son of man, the Israelites are saying, ‘The vision he sees is for many years from now, and he prophesies about the distant future.’ “Therefore say to them, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: None of my words will be delayed any longer; whatever I say will be fulfilled, declares the Sovereign Lord .’ ”’ — Ezekiel 12:1-28

As day 304 begins, I would hate to miss giving the opportunity to anyone who hasn’t received Jesus into their lives as their Lord and Savior an opportunity to make the decision today and the blessing to get to live out the rest of the year in that power and that truth and that hope.

If you would like to receive Jesus as your Lord and Savior, why not join me in this prayer?

Heavenly Father 
I come to you in prayer asking for the 
forgiveness of my Sins. I confess with my 
mouth and believe with my heart that 
Jesus is your Son, And that he died on the 
Cross at Calvary that I might be forgiven. 
and have Eternal Life in the Kingdom of 
Heaven. Father, I believe that Jesus rose 
from the dead and I ask you right now to 
come in to my life and be my personal 
Lord and Savior. I repent of my Sins and 
will Worship you all the day's of my Life!
Because your word is truth, I confess with 
my mouth that I am Born Again and 
Cleansed by the Blood of Jesus! In Jesus 
Name, Amen
Heavenly Father
I come to you in prayer asking for the
forgiveness of my Sins. I confess with my
mouth and believe with my heart that
Jesus is your Son, And that he died on the
Cross at Calvary that I might be forgiven.
and have Eternal Life in the Kingdom of
Heaven. Father, I believe that Jesus rose
from the dead and I ask you right now to
come in to my life and be my personal
Lord and Savior. I repent of my Sins and
will Worship you all the day’s of my Life!
Because your word is truth, I confess with
my mouth that I am Born Again and
Cleansed by the Blood of Jesus! In Jesus
Name, Amen

Did you pray with me?
Would you be willing to leave me a comment so that I can pray with and for you about such an incredible decision?

Or if you don’t feel comfortable leaving a comment on my blog, why not email or text me instead?

Did you pray with me?
Would you be willing to leave me a comment so that I can pray with and for you about such an incredible decision?

Or if you don’t feel comfortable leaving a comment on my blog, why not email or text me instead?

Today’s devotional that I am following is The 49-Week Challenge comes from Life.Church. For more information, please visit www.life.church — Thank you Life.Church for sharing this reading plan through Bible.com

4 days…


Timing… Perspective… Position… Placement… Action… Response… Questions… Answers… Retrospective… Control… Preparation… Faith… Peace… Joy… Hope… Trust… Love… Sow… Reap… Invest… Return… Steward… Selfless… Serve… Heart… Lead… Follow… Obey… Humility… Turn… Patience… Kindness… Goodness… Self-Control… Faithful… Gentleness… Endurance… Restraint…

What will be next? What will end? What will begin? What will continue? What will change? What will stay the same?

Where will you turn? Who will you talk to? When will you notice? When will you realize? Why will it take so long? Why not sooner? Why not now? How will it impact you? How will it make a difference? How will you respond? How will you react? How will you know?

The countdown continues…


Today’s reading comes from Nehemiah 7-8, and 1 John 1. Let’s take hold of all God has to say today and let’s share His hope and His love with the world around us so that they may hear the Good News of Jesus and respond before their time runs out.

What happens to people when they accomplish something? What happens to people when they meet their goals? What happens when it is finished? What’s next? New plan? New purpose? New schedule? New direction? What things will stay the same? What things will change? Will we need to take a count or audit of what is left? Will we need to consider the skills and talents of the remnant? Will we need to press on to the next milestone? Will there be new goals? Will there be new work?

1And now the wall had been rebuilt, the gates had all been put in place, and the Temple guards, the members of the sacred choir, and the other Levites had been assigned their work. 2I put two men in charge of governing the city of Jerusalem: my brother Hanani and Hananiah, commanding officer of the fortress. Hananiah was a reliable and God-fearing man without equal. 3I told them not to have the gates of Jerusalem opened in the morning until well after sunrise and to have them closed and barred before the guards went off duty at sunset. I also told them to appoint guards from among the people who lived in Jerusalem and to assign some of them to specific posts and others to patrol the area around their own houses.

The List of Those Who Returned from Exile

(Ezra 2.1-70)
4Jerusalem was a large city, but not many people were living in it, and not many houses had been built yet. 5God inspired me to assemble the people and their leaders and officials and to check their family records. I located the records of those who had first returned from captivity, and this is the information I found:
6Many of the exiles left the province of Babylon and returned to Jerusalem and Judah, each to his own hometown. Their families had been living in exile in Babylonia ever since King Nebuchadnezzar had taken them there as prisoners. 7Their leaders were Zerubbabel, Joshua, Nehemiah, Azariah, Raamiah, Nahamani, Mordecai, Bilshan, Mispereth, Bigvai, Nehum, and Baanah.
8-25This is the list of the clans of Israel, with the number of those from each clan who returned from exile:
Parosh – 2,172
Shephatiah – 372
Arah – 652
Pahath Moab (descendants of Jeshua and Joab) – 2,818
Elam – 1,254
Zattu – 845
Zaccai – 760
Binnui – 648
Bebai – 628
Azgad – 2,322
Adonikam – 667
Bigvai – 2,067
Adin – 655
Ater (also called Hezekiah) – 98
Hashum – 328
Bezai – 324
Hariph – 112
Gibeon – 95
26-38People whose ancestors had lived in the following towns also returned:
Bethlehem and Netophah – 188
Anathoth – 128
Beth Azmaveth – 42
Kiriath Jearim, Chephirah, and Beeroth – 743
Ramah and Geba – 621
Michmash – 122
Bethel and Ai – 123
The other Nebo – 52
The other Elam – 1,254
Harim – 320
Jericho – 345
Lod, Hadid, and Ono – 721
Senaah – 3,930
39-42This is the list of the priestly clans that returned from exile:
Jedaiah (descendants of Jeshua) – 973
Immer – 1,052
Pashhur – 1,247
Harim – 1,017
43-45Clans of Levites who returned from exile:
Jeshua and Kadmiel (descendants of Hodaviah) – 74
Temple musicians (descendants of Asaph) – 148
Temple guards (descendants of Shallum, Ater, Talmon, Akkub, Hatita, and Shobai) – 138
46-56Clans of Temple workers who returned from exile:
Ziha, Hasupha, Tabbaoth,
Keros, Sia, Padon,
Lebana, Hagaba, Shalmai,
Hanan, Giddel, Gahar,
Reaiah, Rezin, Nekoda,
Gazzam, Uzza, Paseah,
Besai, Meunim, Nephushesim,
Bakbuk, Hakupha, Harhur,
Bazlith, Mehida, Harsha,
Barkos, Sisera, Temah,
Neziah, and Hatipha.
57-59Clans of Solomon’s servants who returned from exile:
Sotai, Sophereth, Perida,
Jaalah, Darkon, Giddel,
Shephatiah, Hattil, Pochereth Hazzebaim, and Amon.
60The total number of descendants of the Temple workers and of Solomon’s servants who returned from exile was 392.
61-62There were 642 belonging to the clans of Delaiah, Tobiah, and Nekoda who returned from the towns of Tel Melah, Tel Harsha, Cherub, Addon, and Immer; but they could not prove that they were descendants of Israelites.
63-64The following priestly clans could find no record to prove their ancestry: Hobaiah, Hakkoz, and Barzillai. (The ancestor of the priestly clan of Barzillai had married a woman from the clan of Barzillai of Gilead and taken the name of his father-in-law’s clan.) Since they were unable to prove who their ancestors were, they were not accepted as priests. 65 The Jewish governor told them that they could not eat the food offered to God until there was a priest who could use the Urim and Thummim.
66-69Total number of exiles who returned – 42,360.
Their male and female servants – 7,337
Male and female musicians – 245
Horses – 736
Mules – 245
Camels – 435
Donkeys – 6,720
70-72Many of the people contributed to help pay the cost of restoring the Temple:
The governor 270 ounces of gold
50 ceremonial bowls
530 robes for priests
Heads of clans 337 pounds of gold
3,215 pounds of silver
The rest of the people 337 pounds of gold
2,923 pounds of silver
67 robes for priests
73  The priests, the Levites, the Temple guards, the musicians, many of the ordinary people, the Temple workers—all the people of Israel—settled in the towns and cities of Judah.
–Nehemiah 7

How about setting a common ground? How about setting up a firm foundation on which to build everything else? How about aligning things with a cornerstone so that as things start to get built up they are in line? How about using good resources to ensure it lasts?

Consider the solid foundation which is Jesus Christ! Consider the cornerstone to align with to be Jesus Christ! Consider the common ground to be rules of higher standards Jesus has called us to! Let’s first love God with all of our hearts, mind, soul, and strength! Let’s love our neighbors as ourselves! Let’s lead with love! Let’s put Jesus in the middle of all our relationships so that we can come together with common purposes! A chord of three strands is not easily broken! Let’s point people back to God! Let’s turn our lives back to God! Let’s walk with Him and in His ways! Let’s start a revival where God is glorified and lives are transformed for eternity! None of the “stuff” will last forever, only people! So we need to have God’s eyes and God’s ears and God’s heart for the people around us! God sent Jesus to save the world! His hope was that nobody would perish but that everyone would come to faith in Jesus! So let’s ask God how He would have us kick things off! Let’s ask God for clarity and vision, purpose and passion for His plan! Let’s ask God to make us sensitive to the prompting of the Holy Spirit so that in every situation we will be able to step up and step in and help people be restored to God!

Ezra Reads the Law to the People

1By the seventh month the people of Israel were all settled in their towns. On the first day of that month they all assembled in Jerusalem, in the square just inside the Water Gate. They asked Ezra, the priest and scholar of the Law which the Lord had given Israel through Moses, to get the book of the Law. 2So Ezra brought it to the place where the people had gathered—men, women, and the children who were old enough to understand. 3There in the square by the gate he read the Law to them from dawn until noon, and they all listened attentively.
4Ezra was standing on a wooden platform that had been built for the occasion. The following men stood at his right: Mattithiah, Shema, Anaiah, Uriah, Hilkiah, and Maaseiah; and the following stood at his left: Pedaiah, Mishael, Malchijah, Hashum, Hashbaddanah, Zechariah, and Meshullam.
5As Ezra stood there on the platform high above the people, they all kept their eyes fixed on him. As soon as he opened the book, they all stood up. 6Ezra said, “Praise the Lord, the great God!”
All the people raised their arms in the air and answered, “Amen! Amen!” They knelt in worship, with their faces to the ground.
7Then they rose and stood in their places, and the following Levites explained the Law to them: Jeshua, Bani, Sherebiah, Jamin, Akkub, Shabbethai, Hodiah, Maaseiah, Kelita, Azariah, Jozabad, Hanan, and Pelaiah. 8They gave an oral translation of God’s Law and explained it so that the people could understand it.
9When the people heard what the Law required, they were so moved that they began to cry. So Nehemiah, who was the governor, Ezra, the priest and scholar of the Law, and the Levites who were explaining the Law told all the people, “This day is holy to the Lord your God, so you are not to mourn or cry. 10Now go home and have a feast. Share your food and wine with those who don’t have enough. Today is holy to our Lord, so don’t be sad. The joy that the Lord gives you will make you strong.”
11The Levites went around calming the people and telling them not to be sad on such a holy day. 12So all the people went home and ate and drank joyfully and shared what they had with others, because they understood what had been read to them.

The Festival of Shelters

13The next day the heads of the clans, together with the priests and the Levites, went to Ezra to study the teachings of the Law. 14 They discovered that the Law, which the Lord gave through Moses, ordered the people of Israel to live in temporary shelters during the Festival of Shelters. 15So they gave the following instructions and sent them all through Jerusalem and the other cities and towns: “Go out to the hills and get branches from pines, olives, myrtles, palms, and other trees to make shelters according to the instructions written in the Law.”
16So the people got branches and built shelters on the flat roofs of their houses, in their yards, in the Temple courtyard, and in the public squares by the Water Gate and by the Ephraim Gate. 17All the people who had come back from captivity built shelters and lived in them. This was the first time it had been done since the days of Joshua son of Nun, and everybody was excited and happy. 18From the first day of the festival to the last they read a part of God’s Law every day. They celebrated for seven days, and on the eighth day there was a closing ceremony, as required in the Law.
–Nehemiah 8

Time is short! Life is like a mist! This world in its present form is passing away! We should live like stewards rather than owners as the earth is the Lord’s and everything in it! We should live like servants as we serve the Lord! Be God’s hands and arms of love extended! See the world like He does! Hear the cries like He does! Ask Him for wisdom so that you know what to do! Ask Him for sensitivity to the Holy Spirit in every situation because there may be more to it than what is on the surface! Let’s meditate on the Word of the Lord always! Let’s hope and trust Jesus in everything! Let’s live for eternity so that not only will we get to spend eternity with God but also that we can help others come into this same relationship!

The Word of Life

1 We write to you about the Word of life, which has existed from the very beginning. We have heard it, and we have seen it with our eyes; yes, we have seen it, and our hands have touched it. 2 When this life became visible, we saw it; so we speak of it and tell you about the eternal life which was with the Father and was made known to us. 3What we have seen and heard we announce to you also, so that you will join with us in the fellowship that we have with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ. 4We write this in order that our joy may be complete.

God Is Light

5Now the message that we have heard from his Son and announce is this: God is light, and there is no darkness at all in him. 6If, then, we say that we have fellowship with him, yet at the same time live in the darkness, we are lying both in our words and in our actions. 7But if we live in the light—just as he is in the light—then we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from every sin.
8If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and there is no truth in us. 9But if we confess our sins to God, he will keep his promise and do what is right: he will forgive us our sins and purify us from all our wrongdoing. 10If we say that we have not sinned, we make a liar out of God, and his word is not in us.

–1 John 1

Make time with God! Make time to hear from Him! Make time to do what He is calling you to do! Make time to speak life into the people He sends to you!