When Jesus taught his disciples using parables, the parable was like solving a math problem with pen and paper. He wanted His students to gain understanding more than knowledge. And Jesus used His parables like a road map because when His disciples arrived at their destination, He wanted them to know how they got there.
This devotion is an audio podcast . Click the link below to listen.
My daddy is going to kill me! Sixteen years old and he has only had his driver’s license for a month. Driving his daddy’s truck he looks down to change the radio station and does not see the car in front of him slowing down to make a turn. Thankfully no one is hurt, but two vehicles are damaged.
Many teenagers have heard a list of “do nots” from their parents. Don’t hang out with people who do drugs, don’t drink alcohol, don’t look at your phone while driving, and many other do nots. Good parents always give their teenagers freedom with boundaries. However, most young people will mess up sometimes. And like the distracted driver who wrecked his parent’s truck they might think, “ my daddy is going to kill me.”
Of course there will be consequences for the mistakes that have been made. But when the parents arrive on the scene the first thing they do is grab the child and hug him tightly. Mamas and daddies love their children unconditionally and nothing will change that. The most important thing right now is that their baby is safe.
I am a child of God. He is my Father in Heaven. In Christ I am free, but there are boundaries that I should not cross. And yet I often do. This is sin. There are consequences for sin. So I stand heartbroken before God, knowing that I deserve the wages of sin. But a broken and contrite heart my Father will not despise. Because of His unconditional love for me, I am safe in the arms of God.
Borrowing a thought from Job 13:15-16 I say, God might kill me, but I have no other hope. This is what will save me. I am not Godless nor am I Fatherless. I am made righteous by the Blood of Jesus and saved by the Grace of God. He is my Father and He loves me.
What kind of people do you think Jesus likes to hang around with? Some people think that Jesus would never be near a drug addict, an alcoholic, or any person who does bad things. The Bible teaches that we are to be perfect just as He is perfect. So does that mean Jesus only hangs out with perfect people? Do you think that He prefers to be around preachers, Sunday School teachers and other church people? After all, church people are perfect right? Righttt!
Do you have self-inflicted scars and pains from past mistakes? Do you have wounds on your heart that still fester years after someone has hurt you? If so, I have good news for you. You are the kind of person Jesus wants to spend time with. Jesus loves broken people. The Bible tells us that, “The Lord is near to those who have a broken heart,” So if you have a broken heart or a broken marriage, if you are the victim of broken promises or broken dreams, you can be sure that God has a special love for you.
Most people have serious problems in their lives. Maybe you are an addict of some kind. Most of us are. Maybe your marriage is closer to hell than it is to heaven. Perhaps you have a child who has broken your heart or maybe it is a parent that has broken your heart. If so read Psalms 147:3 and find the promise that God will not turn away from a broken and contrite heart.
All people have an element of brokenness within them, but few realize that God can turn their brokenness into a blessing. The blessedness of brokenness is this; God knows you by name and He wants to mend your wounds and heal your broken heart. Jesus said “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.” Many of you have darkness in your hearts that comes from brokenness. But Jesus says we do not have to walk in darkness because His Light can overcome our brokenness.
On a clear morning as the sun rises, the sky seems to be full of jet planes. At an altitude of five miles you don’t really see the planes, you only see the contrails they leave behind. And yet contrails are nothing but water vapors formed by the exhaust of the jet engines. Some contrails are long while others are short. Some spread out and last a while, but others disappear almost immediately. All contrails are different. But they all have one thing in common. They all fade away.
As I watch these planes in the sky, I know that they all have importance and purpose for being. Each one carries hundreds of people to their predetermined destination. Even so their greatest impression on the morning sky is nothing but condensed water vapor evaporating in the air. This reminds me that in spite of our importance and purpose, the Bible teaches that our lives are only a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away.
Someone once asked President Ronald Reagan how he wanted to be remembered after he was gone. His answer was, “ I don’t care, I won’t be there”. This great man understood that in the grand scheme of eternity even the actions of presidents will dissipate in the winds of time. You and I should also remember that our life on earth is like a shadow and like a cloud our works will fade away .
There is great good news for those of us who love Jesus with all our hearts. This great good news is that while men will forget we ever lived, our Omnipotent Father in heaven knows our name forever. Our goal on this earth should be to lay up treasure in heaven. Treasure in heaven is not silver and gold. No, treasure in heaven is the souls of men that are there because of our witness. It is a wise person who leads souls to Christ. The Bible says “Those who are wise will shine like the bright expanse of the heavens. Those who lead many to righteousness will shine like the stars forever and ever.” This is a promise that will never fade away.
The sun rises and chases away the darkness. The birds sing and fill the air with cheerful songs. Two doves cuddle on a wire reminding me of faithful lovers. Majestic clouds paint a moving portrait that declares the glory of the Lord. In the throne room of Heaven, our God reigns and is impervious to the fools who say He does not exist.
Underneath the sun, the nations rage and plot vainly against our omnipotent Lord. They imagine they can free themselves from His laws. Corrupt and wicked people conspire to do evil things to God’s righteous ones. Sometimes we feel as though we are being chewed up like bread. We wonder does God hear our prayers. Yes, He does hear our prayers. From his throne in heaven, He laughs and ridicules the ones who conspire against Him and His chosen ones. We will prevail because in Heaven our God reigns.
The sunrise emphasizes that God hears our prayer and chases away the darkness. The birds sing a victory song and we know that the battle is the Lords. The cooing of the doves reminds us that Jesus is the lover of our souls. The clouds declare the glory of the King. Our God is a despiser of wickedness and evil people will not stand in His presence. The wicked ones will be filled with terror because God is with His righteous ones. Our salvation is from the Lord of all Creation and forever in Heaven, our God reigns.
For days in advance, we watch the satellite images as monster storms form in the ocean. We know they are coming and we know they are going to be destructive. But all we can do is wait defenselessly as these terrible storms march ruthlessly onto our shores.
This devotion is an audio podcast. Click on the link below to listen as I talk about the only One who can calm the sea.
I believe that laughter of children is sweet music and the love of a child can put a song in your heart. I believe that the sweat from hard work feels good and the reward of working hard is a good feeling. I believe that reading the Bible while the sun comes up is the best way to start the day. A cup of coffee while talking to God will make the day good to the last drop. The Bible tells us in Romans 15:13 “ The God of hope will fill you with all joy and peace as you believe in Him so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”
Jesus said whoever believes in Him will never die and I know this to be true. I also am convinced that whoever does not believe in Jesus has never lived. Belief is a powerful thing. It can imprint on your life unending hope and it can erase from your life debilitating fear. Belief in the Savior has caused crippled men to walk, blind men to see and dead men to live. I believe that God is good and greatly to be praised. I will praise God in all things, good and bad.
God has promised that with a little faith, we can prayerfully move mountains. If you have faith the size of a mustard seed, your prayers can bring healing to the sick, salvation to the lost and hope to the hopeless. This is true for all of us who believe in the power of Jesus our Savior. Sometimes in our human frailties, we struggle to believe this. But if we cry out to Jesus, He will help us in our unbelief.
I believe that my sins are great but God’s forgiveness is greater. I believe that when I fall my Jesus will be there to pick me up. In my weakness, I often stumble but I have this certain assurance that there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. I know that I am righteous, but only because of the shed blood of Jesus. So for this reason I have firmly planted my feet on the Rock of my salvation. This salvation is found only in Jesus Christ the Son of God. HE is the One in whom I believe.
What is a conqueror? A conqueror is someone who enters into battle with the knowledge that he might lose. Yet with courage and determination he pours all he has into the battle seeking to overcome the enemy. Hoping that he will be victorious.
However, the Bible tells us that a child of God is more than a conqueror. What does it mean to be more than a conqueror? Well, a person who is more than a conqueror knows that the fight is fixed and he cannot lose. As we enter the battle, we know that we can be wounded and injured. There will be times when we are frightened and discouraged. And yet, we are more than conquerors, because we have the assurance that whoever is born again has already overcome the world. Our hope is in Christ and He has already made us victorious.
Yes, those of us who are more than conquerors are assured of victory before the battle even begins. When Moses demanded that Pharaoh let the Israelites go, Pharaoh was already defeated. The walls of Jericho could not stand, because Joshua obeyed the instructions of the Commander of the Army of the Lord. And the giant Goliath had no chance against a little shepherd boy, because David knew that the battle belonged to the Lord.
We have this promise, if God is for us then no one can stand against us. So, I’m absolutely convinced that nothing—nothing living or dead, angelic or demonic, today or tomorrow, high or low, thinkable or unthinkable can defeat us. If Jesus is your Lord, absolutely nothing can come between you and God’s love. Victory is ours because in Christ we are More than Conquerors
I recorded this video while working in my shop. This is me in my element. I am from rural, blue collar background. The paved road really does end just passed my home. I have never and will never be wealthy but God has always provided my family’s every need. For this reason I will always say, “ The Lord is my Shepherd and He is all I want.
She had lived on this earth for almost a hundred years, her body was worn out and tired. Her fingers would no longer play the piano and her voice was to weak to sing. Now the Savior she served was ready to receive her unto Himself. Family and friends gathered around her bed to say goodby. Her last words could barely be heard on earth, but they rang loud in Heaven. With a soft but sure voice she said, “ In Jesus’ name amen.” Then she closed her eyes and went to the place that had been prepared for her.
I have often thought about this dear old saint and her last words. What were her thoughts?What was she seeing and who was she speaking to as she said, “ In Jesus’ name amen?” Could it be that the soul of this sweet lady was seeing the gates of Heaven. Maybe a guardian stood there and asked why should you be allowed into Heaven. And her answer was, “I am a child of the King. I stand here with the the authority of Jesus Christ commanding you to open the gate so I may go to the place He has prepared for me.” So let it be.
In John 16, Jesus said, “ Whatever you ask the Father in My name He will give you.” I am afraid that many people have misunderstood those words. A lot of people think that if they add, “ in Jesus’ name” to the end of their prayer, then God will have to answer. But that is not true. What our Lord meant was if you are a child of God and washed in the blood of the Savior, then you represent the authority of Jesus. With the authority of Jesus in you, God recognizes your right to have your prayer answered. Because of that when you say “Amen”, your Father in Heaven will say “So let it be”.
Now I do not intend to tell you what to say when you pray. That would be pharisaical. The fact is when it comes to prayer, words are not important. The important thing is who you are and who you serve. Are you washed in the blood of Lamb? Are you a child of our Father in Heaven? Do you serve Jesus Christ, the King of Kings? If so, with confidence your last words on earth can be, “in the Name of Jesus, amen.” And Jesus will answer, “ welcome My child, come see the place I have prepared for you.” So let it be.