As we step into the first Thursday of 2022 are you ready to be restored?


Are you in desperate need of help? Are you ready for God to peel back and see or reveal the damage that is in place to see below the surface? When we feel the pain we may want a quick fix but it may require a deeper look and effort to be able to have the Holy Spirit’s deep work in our lives to be fully restored. If we want to live out our lives to the full rather than just settling for a quick fix? Are you ready to be vulnerable enough to invite God in and allow Him to do the deeper work of restoration in our lives rather than trying patching up or covering up those things? Let’s pause and invite God in and grab hold of God’s Word and God’s joy and God’s salvation through Jesus. Are you ready for a full restoration?

Today let’s grab hold of and pray God’s Word over and into our lives:

‘[Rather] is this not the fast which I choose, To undo the bonds of wickedness, To tear to pieces the ropes of the yoke, To let the oppressed go free And break apart every [enslaving] yoke? Is it not to divide your bread with the hungry And bring the homeless poor into the house; When you see the naked, that you cover him, And not to hide yourself from [the needs of] your own flesh and blood? ‘

Isaiah 58:6-7

‘Create in me a clean heart, O God, And renew a right and steadfast spirit within me. Do not cast me away from Your presence And do not take Your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of Your salvation And sustain me with a willing spirit. Then I will teach transgressors Your ways, And sinners shall be converted and return to You. ‘

Psalms 51:10-13

‘The Lord will sustain and strengthen him on his sickbed; In his illness, You will restore him to health. ‘

Psalms 41:3

‘He heals the brokenhearted And binds up their wounds [healing their pain and comforting their sorrow]. ‘

Psalms 147:3

‘Brothers, if anyone is caught in any sin, you who are spiritual [that is, you who are responsive to the guidance of the Spirit] are to restore such a person in a spirit of gentleness [not with a sense of superiority or self-righteousness], keeping a watchful eye on yourself, so that you are not tempted as well. ‘

Galatians 6:1

Today’s post from Be The Dads is Day 1 – How has becoming a father changed your perspective on a Father’s love for his children?

Rad Dad! – Day 1


So where are you today? Are you ready to invite Jesus into your heart? Are you ready to ask Him to help with the deeper work rather than being a bunch of patch jobs? Are you ready to seek Him and ask Him in to give you eyes to see and ears to hear and a heart, mind, and will to be bold and courageous and do what is necessary to be restored? Could today be a breakthrough day? Could today be the day you move from just surviving into a place of thriving through Jesus? Let’s pray:

Dear God
I admit I am a sinner and need your forgiveness; I believe that Jesus Christ died in my place paying the penalty for my sins. I am willing right now to turn from my sin and accept Jesus as my personal Savior and Lord. I commit myself to you and ask you to send the Holy Spirit into my life, to fill me and take control, and help me become the kind of person you want me to be. Thank you Father for loving me. In Jesus' name. 
Amen

Feeling tired or burned out?


How are you managing your time? Ever heard of burning the candle at both ends and the detriment that has to your well-being? One thing I learned many years ago when my diabetes went out of whack because I was putting in my normal days work but because I was on the international team and we had a big project, I was working off hours too in order to stay in touch with the regional teams too. What did that mean? I would be up at 5am and go to be around 1am for about 3 months. If it hadn’t of been for my quarter check-in with my diabetic doctor I may have missed the wakeup call. I discovered that it was having an impact on my health in so many ways including my blood sugars and the doctor sent me for some re-education to help me better count carbs and stuff. This wakeup call made me realize that something was going to have to change and so I started praying and what came to my mind was my priorities. What did I say my priorities were? Was I living my life that way? I had a reminder of an audiobook I had listened to back in the day driving back and forth to work talking about putting First Things First. I remember posting over the years about First Things First. So as I thought about it I came up with a list:

  • God
  • My wife and marriage
  • My child and family

With that top 3 list I realized everything else needed to come after them. So I considered where I was spending my time and decided to step down from the board of the homeowners association I was leading. I considered what was causing me to work such crazy hours and micromanaging folks and turned it around with the realization that the company hires smart people and so I shouldn’t need to babysit them, delegate, trust, and verify with regular check-ins with an open door to being available to discuss if something came up in between. So my days went back to 10 hours instead of 20 hours, my wife and daughter got to see more of me and a better version of me. I was able to continue to serve at the church. And at my next appointment I got a much better report from my doctor.

So with this experience I realized I wasn’t only burning the candle of life at both ends but had started to burn it in the middle too and hence my new saying that it isn’t good to burn a candle on 4 ends. It not only breaks it into 2 smaller candles but also speeds up the burnout.

How about you? Are you feeling tired? Are you getting burned out? Are you ready to make a change before you need to get a wake up call? Are you ready to make an adjustment before your body fails you? Are you ready to reconsider your priorities and how you are living your life in order to get healthy and strong? Are you ready to reconsider your priorities and how you are living your life in order to ensure that your top priorities are getting the time and effort they need and deserve? Are you ready to start now?

Are you ready to find the rest you need to get it all done?


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


Real Rest


MEMORY VERSE OF THE DAY:

‘“Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord your God. In it you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates. ‘

Exodus 20:8-10

God even gave us the example through creation. Let’s look at this a bit deeper expanding to include verse 11 and using the Amplified version.

‘“Remember the Sabbath (seventh) day to keep it holy (set apart, dedicated to God). Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath [a day of rest dedicated] to the Lord your God; on that day you shall not do any work, you or your son, or your daughter, or your male servant, or your female servant, or your livestock or the temporary resident (foreigner) who stays within your [city] gates. For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea and everything that is in them, and He rested (ceased) on the seventh day. That is why the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy [that is, set it apart for His purposes]. ‘

Exodus 20:8-11

POINTS FROM THE DEVOTIONAL:
  • Did you realize a day of rest wasn’t to make us weird but to make us better?
  • Do you realize a day of rest wasn’t to make us weird but because God cares for us and knows we need a break?
  • Do you realize a day of rest wasn’t to make us weird but because God created us to need rest?
  • Do you realize the benefits of taking a day of rest on your mind and body?
  • Do you realize how taking a day off helps to recalibrate our priorities?
  • Do you realize how taking a day off helps to keep our focus on God?
  • Are you aware of your need for rest? Are you aware of the benefits of rest?
  • Do you make time to rest? Do you rest?
  • With all the stimulus available 24/7, are you able to turn it off?
  • Are you trying to get as much done as possible and in so doing burning yourself out between working all day everyday, playing all night and on weekends?
  • Do you feel like you are always in a hurry to get to the next thing?
  • Ever heard of “hurry sickness”?
  • It is when you are always rushing around causing us and others to become physically and emotionally sick. (kind of like what happened to me in my earlier story where my diabetes went out of whack)
  • Do you realize that we need rest to be able to handle and deal with stress rather than allow stress to be the driver?
  • Do you give your calendar over to God to make sure that your time is being used properly? (every morning I look at my calendar for the day and give it up to God saying to remove things that don’t need to be there and adding things that do)
  • Quote from today’s devotional that relates to a man’s revelation:
Check out the full post here.
  • So do you realize the impact you are having on others?
  • Do you realize the impact you are having on yourself?
  • Are you ready to make time to rest and decompress?
  • Are you ready to make the Sabbath a day of rest, of refreshing, of worshipping God, of investing in our family, of reading, of having fun, and of kicking off your shoes and relaxing?
  • Do allow the addiction to GO, GO, GO rob you of what God has planned and designed for you.
  • Are you ready to break the Go, Go, Go addiction cycle?
  • Are you ready to put the focused attention on it to break the addiction?
  • Are you ready to build up the discipline to break the addiction?
  • Are you ready to take courage in order to break the addiction?
  • Are you ready to surround yourself with others who can support and encourage your efforts to break the addiction?
  • Are you ready to join a small group of others who are struggling in order to help encourage and support one another?

DISCUSSION TOPICS FROM TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL:
  • Do you see any “hurry sickness” in your life?
  • What are some specific things you can do to make a Sabbath rest meaningful?

QUOTE(S) FROM TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL:

“If a man cannot earn a living working six days a week, what would make him think he could make it if he works seven days a week?”

Truett Cathy

Today’s reading from Tanakh:


So where are you at? Are you burning the candle on both ends? Have you tried to burn the candle on all four ends? Are you trying to make a living in six or seven days? Are you ready to find rest for your mind, body, and spirit? Are you willing to take your cares and case to God? God wants you to cast your cares on Him because He cares for you! Are you make to make a swap with God? Give up your burdens for His rest? Are you ready to make time to rest? Are you ready to make time to get filled out? Each morning I turn to God’s Word and a good devotional to help fill up my tank to start the day! Throughout COVID I started to exercise more too so that I could be healthy in mind, body, and spirit. Throughout COVID I started to read while I would ride the stationary bike too with motivational, inspirational, and God inspired stories that helped fill my mind with great ideas and motivations to press in and press on. How about you? Are you ready to put God first in your life? Are you ready for a change for the better? 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?


Is the pressure or labor too much to bare?


If there was someone who could help you would you be willing to share it with them? If they would listen without turning away without contempt, mockery, scoffing, insult, disparagement, spite, sarcasm, ridicule, or put-downs, would it make you more willing to share the cares of your heart and the thoughts of your mind? Do you need someone who can stand by you? Do you need someone who can walk it out with you? Do you want someone who can support and encourage you both on the good and on the tough days? Do you want someone who can speak truth in love when you start to question what is going on? Do you need a way to find rest for your soul? Do you need to find rest for your mind? Do you need to find rest for your body?

Do you know where to go when the pressure starts to build up? Do you know where to turn when life feels overwhelming? Do you know what to do when you don’t know what to do? Turn to God! Cry out to Jesus! Be still and listen to the words of the Holy Spirit! Turn to God’s Word for wisdom and direction! When you don’t know what to do, you do what you know how to do. Ever considered in the midst of your trials and troubles, your burdens and your yoke, to give to others in need or to reach out to help others in need?

Is the pressure or labor too much to bare? Are you willing to do something about it? Will you let God in?


The One Year Daily Insights with Zig Ziglar and Dr. Ike Reighard 
for April 25th


Rest for the Soul


MEMORY VERSE OF THE DAY:

‘Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”’

Matthew 11:28-30

POINTS FROM THE DEVOTIONAL:
  • What is burdening your life?
  • What are the pressures?
  • What are the stresses?
  • Do you realize that rest doesn’t mean to escape from all responsibilities?
  • Do you realize that you can find rest without having to escape from everything?
  • Do you realize that being passive or looking to escape may not be the real answer to your situation?
  • Do you realize from Jesus’ words above that He didn’t mean that passivity and escape aren’t what He has in mind?
  • Ever envisioned or tried to picture the word picture Jesus describes in Matthew 11?
  • Can you see the importance of being equally yoked?
  • Can you see the importance of being equally yoked to stability and level of effort?
  • Can you see the importance of being equally yoked from a mentoring and development perspective?
  • Can you see the importance of being equally yoked to learning cooperation and team work?
  • So are you willing to yoke up with Jesus?
  • Are you willing to learn from His lead?
  • Are you willing to develop from His teaching?
  • Are you willing to cooperate and team up with Him?
  • Are you willing to pull alongside Jesus to accomplish God’s plans, purposes, and will for your life?
  • Jesus won’t scold us when we don’t pull our weight or misstep in our walk beside Him, for there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus!
  • Just as today’s verses tell us, rather than scold us, Jesus will be humble and patient in reminding us that He is pulling most of the load.
  • So let’s trust Him in this and with this!
  • Let’s allow the Spirit to lead and guide our thoughts, our words, our steps, and our actions.
  • Let’s stop trying to pull everything on our own and instead pair up with Jesus!
  • Let’s stop trying to go it alone!
  • Let’s start pulling in alignment with Jesus!
  • Let’s walk with Him and learn to work in cooperation with Him!
  • Let’s allow this lesson to bring us peace, relief, rest, and thankfulness
  • Let’s lean on God’s strength rather than trying to go it in our own.

DISCUSSION TOPICS FROM TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL:
How are you doing in the yoke as you learn to pull with Jesus?
  • It gets easier as you get in step and alignment with Jesus
  • As you accept and adjust your steps to walk with Him,
What changes do you need to make? How will these affect your life?
  • Keep in step with Jesus, all the time
  • Understand when it is time to speed up or slow down
  • In so doing, there will be rest and peace and relief and so much more to be thankful for.

QUOTE(S) FROM TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL:

“I have a great need for Christ: I have a great Christ for my need.”

Charles Haddon Spurgeon

Today’s reading from Tanakh:


Are you ready to stop trying to do it all in your own strength? Are you ready to stop trying to go it alone? Are you ready to share the load with someone who is able to do exceedingly, abundantly more than you could ever ask or imagine? Will today be your day?

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?


Know how to find hope beyond your circumstances?


There is war and treat of war! There are nations against nations and kingdom against kingdoms! There are famines and earthquakes! In the days of Jeremiah they were told that there would swords, famine, and plagues before the city would be given to Babylon! But in and thru it all there was still hope given by God!

36“You are saying about this city, ‘By the sword, famine and plague it will be given into the hands of the king of Babylon’; but this is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: 37I will surely gather them from all the lands where I banish them in my furious anger and great wrath; I will bring them back to this place and let them live in safety. 38They will be my people, and I will be their God. 39I will give them singleness of heart and action, so that they will always fear me and that all will then go well for them and for their children after them. 40I will make an everlasting covenant with them: I will never stop doing good to them, and I will inspire them to fear me, so that they will never turn away from me. 41I will rejoice in doing them good and will assuredly plant them in this land with all my heart and soul.
42“This is what the Lord says: As I have brought all this great calamity on this people, so I will give them all the prosperity I have promised them. 43Once more fields will be bought in this land of which you say, ‘It is a desolate waste, without people or animals, for it has been given into the hands of the Babylonians.’ 44Fields will be bought for silver, and deeds will be signed, sealed and witnessed in the territory of Benjamin, in the villages around Jerusalem, in the towns of Judah and in the towns of the hill country, of the western foothills and of the Negev, because I will restore their fortunes, declares the Lord.”

–from Jeremiah 32

We need to see beyond today! We need to look beyond the here and the now! We need a vision for the future! As we read in Jeremiah 29:11, God’s plan is for us to have a hope and a future! We need to turn to Him, trust in Him, and walk aligned with Him in and thru the trials and troubles! We need to use the trials to build up our faith and persevere so that in the end we will be mature, complete and lacking nothing! God will restore! No matter what is going on! No matter what has happened! Don’t lose faith! Don’t lose hope! Don’t give up! Put your trust in God! Walk in His ways! Acknowledge Him so that He will make your path straight! It’s about finding unity within the body! It’s about coming together in unison rather than be remembered for our bickering and divisive ways! Let’s rejoice in the Lord! Let your gentleness be evident and obvious to everyone! Don’t be anxious about anything, instead pray and fellowship with God, petition and bring your needs before God, be thankful giving God the praise, the honor and the glory in Jesus’ name and give your requests into God’s hands! Now peace…allow God’s peace that goes beyond all understanding guard your heart and mind in Christ Jesus! So if you are wondering what to do and how to live, consider what Paul says next…

8Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. 9Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.

–from Philippians 4

Jeremiah gets a second reminder for hope in the future! A promise for restoration! God speaks to Him this way…

Promise of Restoration

1While Jeremiah was still confined in the courtyard of the guard, the word of the Lord came to him a second time: 2“This is what the Lord says, he who made the earth, the Lord who formed it and established it—the Lord is his name: 3‘Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.’ 4For this is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says about the houses in this city and the royal palaces of Judah that have been torn down to be used against the siege ramps and the sword 5in the fight with the Babylonians: ‘They will be filled with the dead bodies of the people I will slay in my anger and wrath. I will hide my face from this city because of all its wickedness.
6“ ‘Nevertheless, I will bring health and healing to it; I will heal my people and will let them enjoy abundant peace and security. 7I will bring Judah and Israel back from captivity and will rebuild them as they were before. 8I will cleanse them from all the sin they have committed against me and will forgive all their sins of rebellion against me. 9Then this city will bring me renown, joy, praise and honor before all nations on earth that hear of all the good things I do for it; and they will be in awe and will tremble at the abundant prosperity and peace I provide for it.’
10“This is what the Lord says: ‘You say about this place, “It is a desolate waste, without people or animals.” Yet in the towns of Judah and the streets of Jerusalem that are deserted, inhabited by neither people nor animals, there will be heard once more 11the sounds of joy and gladness, the voices of bride and bridegroom, and the voices of those who bring thank offerings to the house of the Lord, saying,

“Give thanks to the Lord Almighty,
for the Lord is good;
his love endures forever.”

For I will restore the fortunes of the land as they were before,’ says the Lord.
12“This is what the Lord Almighty says: ‘In this place, desolate and without people or animals—in all its towns there will again be pastures for shepherds to rest their flocks. 13In the towns of the hill country, of the western foothills and of the Negev, in the territory of Benjamin, in the villages around Jerusalem and in the towns of Judah, flocks will again pass under the hand of the one who counts them,’ says the Lord.
14“ ‘The days are coming,’ declares the Lord, ‘when I will fulfill the good promise I made to the people of Israel and Judah.
15“ ‘In those days and at that time
I will make a righteous Branch sprout from Davidʼs line;
he will do what is just and right in the land.
16In those days Judah will be saved
and Jerusalem will live in safety.
This is the name by which it will be called: The Lord Our Righteous Savior.’
17For this is what the Lord says: ‘David will never fail to have a man to sit on the throne of Israel, 18nor will the Levitical priests ever fail to have a man to stand before me continually to offer burnt offerings, to burn grain offerings and to present sacrifices.’ ”
19The word of the Lord came to Jeremiah: 20“This is what the Lord says: ‘If you can break my covenant with the day and my covenant with the night, so that day and night no longer come at their appointed time, 21then my covenant with David my servant—and my covenant with the Levites who are priests ministering before me—can be broken and David will no longer have a descendant to reign on his throne. 22I will make the descendants of David my servant and the Levites who minister before me as countless as the stars in the sky and as measureless as the sand on the seashore.’ ”
23The word of the Lord came to Jeremiah: 24“Have you not noticed that these people are saying, ‘The Lord has rejected the two kingdoms he chose’? So they despise my people and no longer regard them as a nation. 25This is what the Lord says: ‘If I have not made my covenant with day and night and established the laws of heaven and earth, 26then I will reject the descendants of Jacob and David my servant and will not choose one of his sons to rule over the descendants of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. For I will restore their fortunes and have compassion on them.’ ”

–from Jeremiah 33

Will you cry out to God for wisdom? Will you cry out to God for help? Will you turn to Him when you face trials and troubles? Will you put all your hope and trust in God?

Will you allow God to bring health and healing back into the country after such a divisive and tenuous event? Will you ask Him to come and heal your land? Will you humble yourself and pray? Will ask Him for forgiveness? Will you grab hold of the promise that if His people who are called by His name will humble themselves and pray, turning back to Him, seeking His face, turning away from their wicked ways, then He will hear from heaven, forgive their sins, and heal their land!

Will you see as God sees it? Will you see it as it will be rather than where it is today? Will you allow Him to give you eyes to see beyond today? Will you allow Him to give you hope beyond your circumstances?

So let’s grab hold of the truths of God! Let’s take hold of His promises! Let’s turn to Jesus and ask Him into our very situation so that He can intervene and intercede on our behalf!

Once we asked Jesus into our hearts, we were born again! We are new creation where the old is gone and the new has come! The great news is that there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus! So if you are feeling a spirit of condemnation rather than correction, it is not from God! Jesus paid it all! Jesus did what we couldn’t do for ourselves! We just have to receive it, the gift of life and of hope! We just need to believe it and live it! We just have to live with a different mindset! Yes we may have suffering in the present, but it will lead to future glory thanks to our Lord and Savior Jesus! Because we are more than conquerors thru Jesus!

Let’s reflect on this as we read the final chapter of today’s reading from Romans…

Life Through the Spirit

1Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, 2because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death. 3For what the law was powerless to do because it was weakened by the flesh, God did by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh to be a sin offering. And so he condemned sin in the flesh, 4in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fully met in us, who do not live according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.
5Those who live according to the flesh have their minds set on what the flesh desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires. 6The mind governed by the flesh is death, but the mind governed by the Spirit is life and peace. 7The mind governed by the flesh is hostile to God; it does not submit to Godʼs law, nor can it do so. 8Those who are in the realm of the flesh cannot please God.
9You, however, are not in the realm of the flesh but are in the realm of the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God lives in you. And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, they do not belong to Christ. 10But if Christ is in you, then even though your body is subject to death because of sin, the Spirit gives lifebecause of righteousness. 11And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of his Spirit who lives in you.
12Therefore, brothers and sisters, we have an obligation—but it is not to the flesh, to live according to it. 13For if you live according to the flesh, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live.
14For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God. 15The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.” 16The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are Godʼs children. 17Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.

Present Suffering and Future Glory

18I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us. 19For the creation waits in eager expectation for the children of God to be revealed. 20For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope 21that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the freedom and glory of the children of God.
22We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. 23Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption to sonship, the redemption of our bodies. 24For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what they already have? 25But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently.
26In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans. 27And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for Godʼs people in accordance with the will of God.
28And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. 29For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters. 30And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.

More Than Conquerors

31What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? 32He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things? 33Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. 34Who then is the one who condemns? No one. Christ Jesus who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us. 35Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? 36As it is written:
“For your sake we face death all day long;
we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.”
37No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

–from Romans 8


Today’s Reading: Jeremiah 3233, Romans 8

A time for restoration!


Take a look around at all that has been torn up, broken down, neglected, abolished and destroyed! You know what we need? We need a time to restore! Restore relationships! Restore community! Restore hope! Restore marriages! Restore families! Restore health! Restore behaviors that produce good! Restore values! Restore truth! Restore order! Restore the land! Restore equality! Restore justice! Restore righteousness! Restore peace! Restore security! Restore safety! Restore the knowledge of right and wrong! Restore discipline! Restore the fortunes to be able to remove the debt! Restore the cities! Restore the rejoicing! Restore the increase! Restore the joy! Restore the trust! Restore good and faithful leaders! Restore us so that we will be God’s people and He will be our God! Restore the love! Restore the kindness! Restore how people are valued by their character, the content of their character! Restore unity! Restore alignment to God’s ways! Restore the land! Restore the singing! Restore the direction and instruction! Restore the value and values! Restore the goodness and greatness! Restore the jobs so that people will be able to get back to working and producing! Restore justice so that the rule of law will be followed and applied equally! Restore hope that will last, hope that goes beyond one generation! Restore accountability for what we say and do! Restore the production of the fruit of the Spirit: Restore love! Restore joy! Restore peace! Restore forbearance! Restore patience! Restore kindness! Restore goodness! Restore faithfulness! Restore self-control!

Restore forgiveness! Restore truth! Restore hope! Restore justice! Restore The Way!

We need a revival! With people turning back to God and allowing Him to lead us and guide us in all of His ways! With people following after Jesus and making a difference by sharing the fruit of the Spirit! With people demonstrating the fruit of the Spirit. So let’s repent and turn back to God! Let’s allow the fruits of the Spiritlove, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control to flow thru us and out of us! Let’s get a revival moving forward for the glory of God! Let’s revive this country and this world! Let’s restore this country and this world! Let’s allow the Word of God and the promises of God to be poured out over this world! 

Let’s put up guideposts to help people find their way! Let’s provide road signs to point them in the right direction! Help them to find the road they should take! Give them eyes to see and ears to hear so that they will stop wandering! Let’s greet others with words like: The Lord bless you, you prosperous city, you sacred mountain. Let’s come together and live together again in unity! Let’s come together and live together again in alignment to God’s Word and God’s will! Let’s be accountable for the way we live! Not how our parents lived or how our kids live, but be accountable for the way we live! Let’s allow God’s Word to be in our minds and guide and direct our steps! Let’s allow God’s Word to be etched into our hearts so that we know the difference between right and wrong and live it out! 

Let’s choose to live life above average! The law is set to be average, but Jesus calls us to be above average! If we just live at the status quo, then the average will keep going down! If we choose to live lives above average, then we will keep raising the average and help restore this land! Be it the law of the land or God’s law from the 10 commandments, we need to step up and stand up for what is right! We need to raie the average so that people can live out each day in confidence and trusting in God! Today’s reading in Romans speaks to us of being freed from sin and bound to Jesus!

On the mound, Jesus teach us the way! His Way! Jesus didn’t come to abolish the law but to fulfill it!

The Fulfillment of the Law

17 “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. 18For truly I tell you, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished. 19Therefore anyone who sets aside one of the least of these commands and teaches others accordingly will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever practices and teaches these commands will be called great in the kingdom of heaven. 20For I tell you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the Pharisees and the teachers of the law, you will certainly not enter the kingdom of heaven.

Murder

21 “You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘You shall not murder, and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.’ 22But I tell you that anyone who is angry with a brother or sister will be subject to judgment. Again, anyone who says to a brother or sister, ‘Raca,’ is answerable to the court. And anyone who says, ‘You fool!’ will be in danger of the fire of hell.
23 “Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother or sister has something against you, 24leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to them; then come and offer your gift.
25 “Settle matters quickly with your adversary who is taking you to court. Do it while you are still together on the way, or your adversary may hand you over to the judge, and the judge may hand you over to the officer, and you may be thrown into prison. 26Truly I tell you, you will not get out until you have paid the last penny.

Adultery

27 “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ 28But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart. 29If your right eye causes you to stumble, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. 30And if your right hand causes you to stumble, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to go into hell.

Divorce

31 “It has been said, ‘Anyone who divorces his wife must give her a certificate of divorce.’ 32But I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, makes her the victim of adultery, and anyone who marries a divorced woman commits adultery.

Oaths

33 “Again, you have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘Do not break your oath, but fulfill to the Lord the vows you have made.’ 34But I tell you, do not swear an oath at all: either by heaven, for it is Godʼs throne; 35or by the earth, for it is his footstool; or by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the Great King. 36And do not swear by your head, for you cannot make even one hair white or black. 37All you need to say is simply ‘Yes’ or ‘No’; anything beyond this comes from the evil one.

Eye for Eye

38 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.’ 39But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also. 40And if anyone wants to sue you and take your shirt, hand over your coat as well. 41If anyone forces you to go one mile, go with them two miles. 42Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you.

Love for Enemies

43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. 46If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? 47And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? 48Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.

–from Matthew 5


Today’s Reading: Jeremiah 3031, Romans 7