Beyond Ourselves

A High and Precious Calling

01/29/2020

Would you agree there’s a lot of darkness in the world and that people senselessly hurt one another? Here’s good news. Believers have a different calling than to hurt one another. First Peter 2:21-24 is God’s shout out for us to walk according to a high and precious calling. “For you have been called for this purpose, since Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example for you to follow in His steps, [Calling 1: Follow Christ’s Steps] who committed no sin, nor was any deceit found in His mouth; [Calling 2: Speak the Truth]; and while being reviled, He did not revile in return; while suffering, He uttered no threats, [Calling 3: Take the High Road in Relationships], but kept entrusting Himself to Him who judges righteously; [Calling 4: Keep Entrusting Ourself to God]; and He Himself bore our sins in His body on the cross, so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; [Calling 5: Live Righteously]; for by His wounds you were healed. [Calling 6: Walk in Christ’s Healing]  Yes, there’s a lot of hurt in the world, but Christians are called to a high and precious calling. How are we doing?

Heavenly Father, thank you for Jesus and that He bore our sins so that we might live righteously. Help us honor Him by living according to Your high and precious calling.  

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Fix. Our. Eyes. On. Jesus.

01/28/2020

Have you ever struggled in your faith because you wondered how God could let His Son die for us? Have you ever wondered how Jesus could lay there and let the Romans pound nails into His hands? Hebrews 12:2 explains that it was their plan to save us. Now we have a role in relation to their great sacrifice. “…fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfector of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.;” Jesus is the author and perfector of our faith. He sacrificed His life for us. Now, He tells us to fix our eyes on Him as we go through life’s ups and downs, struggles, and pain. Fix. Our. Eyes. On. Jesus. He did His part. Will we do our part and go through today looking to Him as our example and strength? 

Lord Jesus, AUTHOR and PERFECTOR of our faith, we adore You. Help us fix our eyes on You and look to You for our strength.

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Am I Good Enough

01/27/2020

Have you ever wanted to approach someone to visit or discuss an issue, or maybe just to be near them, but felt the person was unapproachable?  Maybe you felt you weren’t good enough. Isn’t it incredible that our approaching God has nothing to do with our goodness? As a matter of fact, we’re not good enough to approach Holy God. Then, how do we get to Him? Psalm 65:4 NKJV explains. “Blessed is the man You choose, and cause to APPROACH You, that he may dwell in Your courts.” Our Heavenly Father is APPROACHABLE not because we’re good, but rather because Jesus opened the way for us to enter into His presence through Christ’s righteousness. GOD. APPROACHABLE. Grace. Learn more HERE.

LORD, thank You for being an APPROACHABLE GOD to whom we can come through the righteous blood of Christ. 

DISCOVERING HIS PASSION – Care about others. Share with them the good news of God’s grace. This study guide will prepare you. 

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So Now that We Know, What Will We Do

01/26/2020

Have you ever wondered if you’re doing everything you’re supposed to be doing? If so, consider this. Satan offered Jesus all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. (Matthew 4:8) Jesus stood against Satan’s temptation and by doing so, He received God’s gift -“all authority in heaven and on earth.” (Matthew 28:18) With heaven’s highest authority, Jesus tells us in Matthew 28:19-20 what we are to be doing during our time on earth. “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” So now that we know, what will we do? 

Jesus, we praise You, Son of God who has all AUTHORITY in heaven and on earth. 

Learn how to share your faith HERE.

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A Tip for Everyday Living

01/25/2020

Do you like to get tips? Tips on gardening, saving money, home organizing. We do well to pay attention to proven tips. They help us do things smarter and in a more meaningful way.  Hebrews 3:1 gives us a tip. “Therefore, holy brethren, partakers of a heavenly calling, consider Jesus, the Apostle and High Priest of our confession.” What kind of a tip is that? The word “consider” means to “fix your thoughts.” In other words, as partakers of a heavenly calling, we’re to fix our thoughts on Jesus when we wake in the morning, when we get bad news, when we face a difficult decision. Why? When we look at Jesus and consider Him, we’re more likely to act like partakers of a heavenly calling than if we look at our situation from solely an earthly perspective. Not sure this is a good tip? Try it! You’ll discover that considering Jesus in the midst of what you’re facing brings increased hope and assurance.   

Jesus, APOSTLE and High Priest of our confession, help us remember that our confession of You as Lord and Savior makes us partakers of a heavenly calling. Help us walk out our calling well by fixing our thoughts on You.

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Clean and Empowered

01/24/2020

Are you a Christian? In other words, you’ve acknowledged you’re a sinner. You’ve asked the Heavenly Father to forgive you on the basis of Jesus taking your sins on Himself and dying for them. You’ve been cleansed. But are you living an empowered life? You see, John the Baptist baptized people in water, but in John 1:33, he explained that Jesus baptizes us in the Holy Spirit. “‘He upon whom you see the Spirit descending and remaining upon Him, this is the One who baptizes in the Holy Spirit.’” Jesus explained in Acts 1:8 that we receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon us at our salvation. God’s provision for believers is Holy Spirit anointed power! If we’re trudging through life and living in our own strength, it’s time to check the pulse of the Holy Spirit in our lives. Learn more about the Holy Spirit in the Listen UP DVD or How to Live by the Divine Nature Bible study.  2 Resources to help you grow.

Thank You, JESUS, that when we come to You in repentance, confessing You as Lord and Savior, You BAPTIZE us with the HOLY SPIRIT. Help us be mindful of the gift of Your Spirit in us so we walk and live by the Spirit.

This is 1 of 365 facets of our wonderful Lord. To get this free devotional in your inbox, click HERE

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This Makes Me Smile

01/23/2020

It makes me smile to think about where and when Christ spoke the words in Luke 4:18, “THE SPIRIT OF THE LORD IS UPON ME, BECAUSE HE ANOINTED ME TO PREACH THE GOSPEL TO THE POOR.” When did Jesus say these words? He had just returned from being tempted by Satan in the wilderness. He was led by the Spirit in the power of the Spirit.(Luke 4:14) What was His first Spirit-anointed task following His victory over Satan’s temptations? He went home…to Nazareth. I love that. And get this – “as was His custom, He entered the synagogue on the Sabbath, and stood up to read.” This is a good place for us to pause and ask ourselves, “Is it our custom to gather with believers to read and hear the Scriptures? Are we raising our children with the custom of gathering with believers to hear the Word of God? If it was what God’s ANOINTED Lord Jesus did, it’s what I want to do. I’d have hated to have missed Jesus speaking in the synagogue that day. I’d hate to miss Him speaking today as I gather with others to worship Him and hear the reading/teaching of His Word.

Jesus, we praise You, ANOINTED Lord and Savior. Thank You for Your words and example of the Spirit-led life.

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If You’re Drifting

01/22/2020

You need hope. I need hope. Our loved ones need hope. Where do we find it? Do we practice “self-talk” and tell ourselves we are “happy and fine” when we aren’t? Or, do we kneel, look up in praise, and cry out to the One who has gone before us to heaven and intercedes for us?  Hebrews 6:19 describes our relationship with Jesus in this way, “This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, a hope both sure and steadfast and one which enters within the veil, where Jesus has entered…” Jesus is the ANCHOR OF OUR SOUL. He wants us to bring our worries and fears to Him.  If waves of “life” are about to overwhelm you, hold tightly to Christ. He’s holding tightly to you from the security of heaven’s shores.

Jesus, sweet Savior, thank You for being the ANCHOR of OUR SOUL. Thank You that we can fling our arms around You and hold tightly to You when our emotions and thoughts drift toward worry and fear.  We love and praise You. 

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Let’s Be Amazed

01/21/2020

Throughout the Bible, the word “AMAZED” is used to describe people’s reactions to God.  Mark 1:22 records that people “were AMAZED at His (Jesus) teaching; for He was teaching them as one having authority, and not as the scribes.”  The New Testament word “amazed” means astonished, thrown into wonderment.  Jesus’ teachings astonished people. Matthew  12:23 records that when Jesus healed a demon-possessed man who was blind and mute so that he could see and talk, “All the crowds were AMAZED and were saying, ‘This man cannot be the Son of David, can He?'”  When Jesus rose from the dead, they were “thrown into wonderment.”  Oh, that we be amazed, astonished, and thrown into wonderment at our Lord. Keep your eyes open, friend, for how Jesus is working in your life. You may just find that you’re amazed!

Lord Jesus, we praise You, our AMAZING Lord.  

*Amazing” is 1 of 365 ways God is described. Learn the other ways He is described by signing up to get this 60 second devotional in your inbox.  HERE

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Why You Can Stop Fretting

01/20/2020

“I don’t know where this is going.” Have you ever said or thought those words in regard to the unrest in our world, nation, or perhaps your family or a personal situation? The past may be a blur and the future uncertain. It’s no wonder that we can sometimes feel uneasy. Yet in the midst of our ever-changing days, believers have this hope and promise: Jesus isn’t going anywhere. He’s right here with us, just like He has been in our past and just like He will be in our future. Revelation 1:8 records His words of assurance, “I am the Alpha and the Omega,’ says the Lord God, ‘who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.’” Our Lord was with us in our past. He’s with us this moment. He’ll be with us tomorrow. We have an ever-present Lord to see us through our days. Breathe deeply, look up, and praise Him.

Christ Jesus, ALPHA and OMEGA, we praise YOU, who is and who was and who is to come. 

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