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Monday, July 31, 2017

Learning What It Means To Love Others

In review of Mark 12:30-31 it says, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength. This is the first commandment. And the second, like it, is this: You shall love your neighbor as yourself: There is no other commandment greater than these.”

Bottom Line:
Love God and love others

What this means to me:
Jesus says that the greatest two commandments are to love God with every part of my being, my heart, my soul and my strength. The second is to love others as much as I love myself.

Today's passage comes from Mark 12 where Jesus was questioned about the greatest commandment. Jesus replied, The most important commandment is this: "the Lord our God is the one and only Lord, you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength." The second is equally important: "love your neighbor as yourself." No other commandments are greater than these. These are much more important than to offer the burnt offerings and sacrifices required in the law.

What I’m reminded of this morning is that, when I love God completely and care for others as I care for myself, then I fulfill the intent of the Ten Commandments and the other Old Testament laws. I should let these two laws rule my thoughts, decisions, and actions. When uncertainty comes, I can ask myself which course of action best demonstrates love for God and love for others.

The Cross is where Christ brought us all together, the greatest portrait of God’s love. We are brothers and sisters in Christ with no room for hatred. His act of love knit every soul together as one, across every time zone and era, in every tiny corner of the globe.

Loving someone doesn’t mean that I have to agree with everything they say and do. Love them and let God judge them. And show them the difference Christ’s love can make in the life of a believer. If I don’t act any differently than anyone else, then how will others ever have the opportunity to see Christ’s love in action?

In summary, I am to love God first, then my family, and then demonstrate the love of the Lord to those around me. I will find no greater challenge than to love someone who doesn’t deserve it. But this is exactly where I was when Jesus went to the Cross and died for me. Not one of us deserved it. Yet God in his infinite mercy sent His only Son to die anyway.

Friday, July 28, 2017

God Sees

In review of Genesis 16:13b it says, “You are the God who Sees”

Bottom Line:
God really sees you

What does this mean to me:
I’m assured that my always God sees me and will work things out for my best regardless of the circumstances.

Today's passage comes from the first part of Genesis 16. It details three people who made serious mistakes. First Sarai, who took matters into her own hands and gave her servant to Abram; secondly Abram who went along with the plan but, when circumstances began to go wrong, refused to help solve the problem; and lastly Hagar, who ran away from the problem.

In spite of turned out to be a messy situation, God demonstrated his ability to work in all things to bring about good. Sarai and Abram still received the son they so desperately wanted, and God solved Hagar's problem despite Abram's refusal to get involved. As this situation demonstrates, it seems no problem is too complicated for God if we are willing to let him help us.

In the book of Romans, Paul reminds me of the same in "And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to this purpose.” Rom. 8:28.

God is able to turn every circumstance around for my long-range good. God works is to fulfill his purpose, and not necessarily my happiness.

So, this means that I am to fight the good fight of faith! No matter what circumstances currently surround me, God sees. Whether it be my best or worst day, God sees.

I’m learning that I should never doubt my importance to Him. When the three Hebrew boys were thrown into the fiery furnace, they cried out to God. In their hour of desperation, he didn’t send an angel, rather he showed up as the fourth man.

I’m reminded that this is the same for me. When I’m facing an exhausting trial, all I need to do is call upon His mighty name and He will be right there, waiting to meet my need. He can and will touch the part of my life that seems impossibly broken, to grant the need that can make me whole again.

I can call on His name and know that He is the God who sees, and is ready to supply my every need according to His riches in glory.

Thursday, July 27, 2017

God Pays Attention When I Call On Him

In review of Psalm 34:10 it says, “Those who seek the Lord shall not lack any good thing.”

Bottom Line:
Those who seek the Lord, will never lack anything good.

What this means to me:
Because I seek, trust and honor the Lord, I will never miss out on anything good.

God pays attention to those who call on him. Whether God offers escape from trouble or help in time of trouble, I can be certain that he will always hear and act on my behalf. There are joys in having trust and taking refuge in him. For in Him I'll have all I need, and I will never lack any good thing. God knows what I need, and my deepest needs are spiritual.

So, if I start to feel as if I don't have everything I need, consider:
. Is this really a need?
. Is this really good for me?
. Is this the best time for me to have what I desire?

Even if the answer is yes to all these questions, God may allow me to go without help in order to help me grow more dependent on him. He may be wanting me to learn that I need him more than having my immediate desires met.

No matter how tough a problem I’m facing looks, the God is a giant killer. He know what problem be there long before I ever faced it, and He already has the perfect answer in mind, if will only seek Him. God can do the impossible, restoring all that has ever been taken. He promises that He will never withhold any good thing from me.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Forgiveness Brings True Joy

In review of Psalm 32:5 it says, “Finally, I confessed all my sins to you and stopped trying to hide my guilt. I said to myself, “I will confess my rebellion to the Lord.” And you forgave me! All my guilt is gone.”

Bottom Line:
Confess your sins and stop hiding. He will forgive and help remove the guilt.

What this means to me:
I confessed all my sins to you and stopped trying to hide my guilt, and you forgave me and took the guilt away from me.

Confession is to agree with God and acknowledge that he is right to declare that what I have done is sinful, and that I'm wrong to desire or to do it. It also means affirming my intention of abandoning it in order to follow God more faithfully.

Forgiveness brings true joy!

What I’m learning is that only when I ask God to forgive my sins, will he give me real happiness and relief from guilt. There are side effects to not confessing, it adds to stress internally and affects my body and disposition.

The Lord promises to guide me along the best pathway for my life, and that he'll advise and watch over me. I don't need to be like a senseless horse or mule that needs a bit and bridle to keep it under control.

One other thing to keep in mind, after I confess it, Christ forgave me, so move on and don’t dwell on it, as it would be hard to live a productive life if I’m always looking behind me. I don’t need to fear the past; it is forgiven and forgotten.

I may not know what tomorrow holds, but because He holds it in His hands, everything is going to be alright. So I can forgive myself for my past and expect tomorrow to be a brand-new day in Jesus’ name. God has already covered it!  Unfailing love surrounds those who trust the Lord.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

There is Power In My Words

In review of Proverbs 18:21 it says, “The tongue can bring death or life; those who love to talk will reap the consequences.”

Bottom Line:
Words can bring death or life! Those who love to talk will reap the consequences.

What this means to me:
I must be careful and give thought to what I say, because my words can preserve or destroy life; I must be willing to accept the consequences of my words.

If I’m looking for a breakthrough in life today, there is power in my spoken word. What I say can preserve, encourage and uplift or it can tear down and destroy. I should not be careless, blurting out the first thing that comes to mind. Rather I should stop, pause and consider what I’m about to say.

To my advantage, through the blood of Jesus, I am redeemed. All my sins are forgiven. Through the blood I am justified and make righteous, just as if I’d never sinned. I am sanctified and made holy. I am set apart to God.

It’s through the blood of Jesus that I have the boldness to enter into the presence of God. I am free. I am victorious. I have been redeemed and made whole. In Jesus’ mighty name, I give Him all the praise for what He will do in my life today. May I bring Him honor and glory in all that I say and do, and be a light to those around me.

So when Satan begins to remind me of how awful my life is, I can plead the blood of Jesus Christ over every area of my life, every doorpost of my home. I’ll Give what I have to God and allow Him to protect me as His very own.

Monday, July 24, 2017

The Transforming Power Of Prayer and His Spirit

In review of Zechariah 4:6 it says, “Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit, says the Lord of hosts.”

Bottom Line:
Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, says the Lord.

What this means to me:
The Lord tells me, He is the Lord All-powerful. So I should not depend on my own power or strength, but by God’s Spirit.

Today’s passage comes from Zechariah 4. In it we see the Lord speak encouragement to Zerubbabel who was the head of the tribe of Judah during the time of the return from the Babylon exile. Zerubbabel was given the responsibility of rebuilding the Temple in Jerusalem.

Many believe that to survive in this world we must be tough, strong, unbending, and harsh. But God tells us, "not by force nor by strength, but by his His Spirit." The key words are "by my Spirit." It is only through God's Spirit that anything of lasting value is accomplished. The returned exiles were indeed weakened and harassed by their enemies, tired, discouraged, and poor. But actually they had God on their side! As I live for God, I need to learn and determine myself not to trust in my own strength or abilities. Instead, depend on God and work in the power of his Spirit.

Prayer is not a beg-a-thon or a dissertation on my part to send God out to run my errands. Rather prayer is getting me prepared to do God’s will. Once I’m living within the will of God, I’ll be surprised at the amazing things that start happening.

Prayer will release supernatural power into my life. So I shouldn’t just think about the things I would like to improve, but pray about them. Pray until I put things into action. Then watch as God’s plan for my life unfold. It will be beyond spectacular, and become a great reward for faithfully seeking Him.

God’s Word tells me that He is just waiting to hear from me, so call on His name and give Him the broken pieces of my life. Prayer can shatter the shackles of any misery that bind me, and keep me from enjoying the abundant life that is the inheritance of every Believer. This doesn’t mean my life will be like a Fantasy Island each day, but it means that I can have the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding regardless of what is taking place around me.

Prayer can break controlling habits that destroying my life; it can renew my hopes and dreams. It can give me a song in the night when everything around me makes no sense at all. I need to learn to pray without ceasing and watch as my life becomes completely transformed from the inside out.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Learning to Seek God’s Very Best For Me

In review of Psalm 34:8 it says, “O, taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the man who trusts in Him!”

Bottom Line:
Find out for yourself how good the Lord is. Those who find safety with him will be happy.

What this means to me:
I have discovered for myself that the Lord is kind and good to me. He only wants the best for me. I seek him for my protection and refuge. I happily feel safe in Him.

Today’s passage comes from Psalm 34 where David speaks of how God pays attention to those who call on him. I have learned that  can be certain that he will always hear and act on my behalf, because of my love and desire for him.

Psalm 34 shows David and how he praised the Lord at all times. He boasted only in the Lord and not of himself. He wanted to tell all of the Lord's greatness. David tells us that he prayed to the Lord, and he listened and answered him, freeing him from his fears and saving him from all his troubles. So David invites me to taste and see that the Lord is good. He tells me there are great joys for those who take refuge in him. Those who trust in the Lord will lack no good thing.

Furthermore David explains in this Psalm that the eyes of the Lord watch over those who do right, his ears are open to their cries for help. But the Lord turns his face against those who do evil. The Lord hears his people when they call to him for help. He rescues them from all their troubles.

From what I can see, "Taste and see" does not mean, "Check out God's credentials." Instead, it is a warm invitation: "Try this; I know you'll like it." As I took the first step of obedience in following God, I discovered that he is good and kind. As I trust in him daily, we experience more and more how really good he is.

What I’m learning is that I must be willing to accept God’s very best for my life. Sometimes what God knows is best for me differs from the idea of where I want my life to go. Sometimes my life must take me down the road less traveled. I must be willing to give up some things, to make changes in my life, in order to inherit God’s fullness, His blessing, and His favor. Change isn’t always a dirty word. When God sends it your way, don’t resist. Just obey.

God created me to depend on Him. My stubborn flesh would leave me in one direction, but God’s plan takes me on a far better path filled with untold riches and the goodness of the Lord. In the devotional I’m reading today it tells me that, “When I don’t know where to turn, ask God to send me a new dream. For He will not only give me the dream but help me fulfill it.”

I’m also learning that God is looking for people who want His best, a special people holy and separated unto Him. Turn loose of the things of this earth and gain the crown of eternal life. Anything I’m asked to give will be so worth it in the end. Let go and let God take over.

Today's study is helping me with some perspective I'm facing at work with my current Job and another opportunity I'm looking at. What I want is God's very best for me. I want to be open to his leading as He knows what's best for me. I may have to give up certain things I have today (great commute, additional income) to gain the blessings I can get from a change and helping lead others (longer commute, less income, but more meaningful purpose.) I don't want my stubborn flesh to get in way. Therefore I will lean on God and peace in any decision I may be presented with. I will also praise God if no decision needs to be made. Afterall, he provides for me and will put me where He wants me to be. I want to be the person that God is looking for and to accomplish what He wants me to do here on earth. I pray today that God will help me see His leading clearly.

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Requests Asked In Prayer

In review of John 14:13 it says, “Whatever you ask for in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.”

Bottom Line:
Ask Him, and He will do whatever you ask. This way the Son will bring honor to the Father.

What this means to me:
I only need to ask him and Jesus will do what I ask for in His name. In this the Son brings honor to the Father.

I am to not let my heart be troubled. I Trust in God, and in Jesus. Jesus tells me there is more than enough room in the Father's home. When everything is ready, He will come and get me. Jesus then tells us that, "He is the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through him. If we really know Him, we would know who the Father is."

Furthermore Jesus says, anyone who believes in me will do the same works He has done, and even greater, because Jesus is going to be with the Father. I can ask Him for anything in His name and He will do it, thus bringing glory to the father.

It's important to note that when Jesus says I can ask for anything, to remember that my asking must first be in his name, that is, according to God's character and will. Secondly God will not grant requests that are contrary to his nature or his will, and thirdly I cannot use His name as a magical formula to fulfill my selfish desires. If I am sincerely following God and seeking to do his will, then I will find my requests will be in line with what He wants.

I can be set free from anything that is holding me back by my prayers. I need to remember and know that when I pray in faith believing, whatsoever I ask will be mine according to the will of God. When I start praying like this, the devil will leave me alone and find someone else to pick on.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Jesus Provides Resource to Help Me Accomplish His Will

In review of Matthew 16:19 it says, “I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.”

Bottom Line:
When we believe, he gives us what we need to live in eternity and to help others obtain the same.

What this means to me:
As a believer, he has given me the keys to the Kingdom, as such he will give me what I need to accomplish his will in helping others to know and accept Him.

Today's passage is an excerpt from where Peter makes a declaration about Jesus in response to the question Jesus asked, "But who do you say I am?"  Peter replied with "You are the Messiah, the son of the living God."  Jesus told him that He would build His church starting with Peter and give the keys to what He needs.

The meaning in verse 19 (today’s verse) from what I read is the subject of some debate. Some say the "keys" represent authority to carry out church discipline, legislation, and administration, while others say it's the opportunity to bring people to the Kingdom by presenting them with the message of salvation in God's word. Perhaps it's both. However one thing I do know, God wants to use me to help others find their way to Him. To all who believe in Christ and obey his words, the Kingdom doors are swung wide open.

When I pray, Jesus gives me the keys of the Kingdom, and whatever I ask for he will provide or forbid as I lead out in His Spirit and will. Jesus gives me the help (His Heavenly resources) to accomplish what He has asked me to do.

In summary, Jesus puts heavenly resources in flight to help me bring others into the Kingdom.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Evaluating What I Treasure

In review of Matthew 6:19 it says, “Do not lay up for yourselves treasure on earth; where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal.”

Bottom Line:
It’s not wise to store up treasures on this earth, where they can just erode away or be stolen.

What this means to me:
It is not useful for me to store up treasured items here on earth. Items like this will ultimately be eaten up or destroyed, or a thief will steal.

It's not wise for me to store up treasures, they will either deteriorate or be subject to theft. Rather, Jesus suggests that seek to store up treasures in heaven, where they can't be affected by deterioration or be stolen. He reminds me that wherever my treasure is, is where where my focus will be. Furthermore, I’m learning that the storing of treasures in heaven is not limited to tithing but is accomplished by all acts of obedience to God. Giving my money to God's work is part of investing in heaven, however I should also seek to please God, by not only giving, but also in fulfilling God's purpose in all I do.

I can look at things three different ways; as a pessimist, an idealist, or a realist. The idealist may be two million dollars in debt, but that infomercial will convince him he can buy and flip the advertised real estate and reverse that curse in about an hour. The pessimist is like Chicken Little, the sky is always falling in his world. The realist sees that he can’t afford his card, so he sells it and rides the bus.

I need to choose to see things as God sees them. Afterall, a nice car with an inflated payment is not worth forfeiting my house, my marriage or my financial stability.

In summary I shouldn’t sacrifice the gifts God has given me for the things of this world. There is nothing like laying my head on my pillow at night with a clear conscience. I should not trade that for any cheap trinket or item that the enemy might distract me with. Instead learn to enjoy the sweet peace that can only comes from God.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Jesus Provides Restoration

In review of Zechariah 3:4 it says, “The angel said to his heavenly attendants, ‘Take away the filthy clothes this man is wearing.’ Then he said to Joshua, “I have taken away your sin and will give you new clothes to wear.”

Bottom Line:
He can remove your sin and sinful nature and give you a clean slate and a new nature.

What this means to me:
Jesus takes away my sin (filthy clothes) and sinful nature and gives me a new nature and clean clothes to wear.

When I've made bad decisions in the past, I can stop beating myself up over what I can't change. It is dirty laundry. Instead get clean and get moving.

I need to learn to see myself as God see me. While I may be an imperfect vessel in the hand of the Master Potter, He can still take my flaws and transform them into matchless beauty with endless potential. He can remake my mind, body, soul, and spirit into something beyond imagination. He makes all things new!

I need to yield to the Spirit's leading and be willing to make necessary changes. Learn to live without regret, without limitation. Live without saying, "If only..."  Live life to the full. Laugh and be happy for God has designed me to enjoy life, not to suffer in misery.

Today, declare that whatever is holding me back is over. In Jesus' name, take off yesterday's filthy garment and burn it, and put on the robes of royalty instead. Today is a new day, meant to be lived His way.

Friday, July 14, 2017

Asking In Faith

In review of Mark 9:23 it says, “All things are possible to him who believes.”

Bottom Line:
Everything is possible for the one who believes.

What this means to me:
I’m reminded that everything is possible when I have faith and believe it can be done.

Today's verse from Mark 9 comes from words spoke by Jesus as he healed a demon possessed boy. After Jesus returned he found a crowd gathered around when his other disciples were trying to heal a demon possessed boy but couldn't. Jesus disappointedly said, "You faithless people! How long must I be with you? Bring the boy to me." The man then asked Jesus "to have mercy and help he and his son, if you can." Jesus replied with, "what do you mean, if I can," for "anything is possible if a person believes."  The father instantly cried out, "I do believe, but help me overcome my unbelief!" Jesus then commanded the spirit to leave and never enter into him again.

When Jesus says anything is possible, it doesn't mean that I can automatically obtain anything I want if I just think positively. Jesus meant that anything is possible if I believe, because nothing is too difficult for God. We cannot have everything we pray for as if by magic, but with faith, we can have everything we need to serve him.

The attitude of trust and confidence that that the Bible calls belief or faith is not something I can obtain without help. Faith is a gift from God. No matter how much faith I have, I can never reach the point of being self-sufficient. Faith is not stored away like money in the bank. Growing in faith is a constant process of daily renewing my trust in Jesus.

So I can stop saying, “I can’t,” and start saying “I can.”  For nothing is impossible with God.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

To Be Truly Free

In review of John 8:36 it says, “If the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed”

Bottom Line:
If the Son sets you free, then you will be really free.

What this means to me:
Jesus is the only one who can set me free, so if he says he has set me free, then I’m truly free.

Jesus tells me that, "I am truly his disciple if I remain faithful to his teachings. And then I will know the truth, and the truth will set me free.”

With this in mind I need to allow God into my work and home life and watch as He intercedes on my behalf, opening the windows of heaven and pouring out untold blessings. I can stop my self-defeating habits and negative thought. I can have the best of things even in the worst of times. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

To move forward I need to identify and change that thing in my life that is holding me back, and then be truly set free in Jesus’ name. This is my time to enjoy the immeasurable favor of Jesus Christ. I shouldn’t stop until the dream he has planted within becomes a reality.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

What Prayer Is About

In review of Matthew 6:9-10 it says, “In this manner, therefore, pray: Our Father in heaven hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.”

Bottom Line:
When we pray, we are to honor his name and ask Him to come and establish his kingdom, we adjust our will to obey him, just as he is obeyed in heaven.

What this means to me:
When I pray to my Father In Heaven, I start with seeking to honor his holy name. I know that His Kingdom will come as I obey, I pray that I do what I can to help accomplish his will here on earth, just as it is done in heaven.

Today's verses come from the first part of what is referred to as the Lord's prayer. Jesus gave it to the disciples as a model for to keep in mind as we pray.

Prayer is not babble on or repeating my words again and again. For my Father knows exactly what I need before I even ask him. So I should model my prayer like this: Father in heaven may your name be kept holy. May your Kingdom come soon. May your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Provide for what I need today and forgive me for my sins as I seek to forgive those who sin against me. Help me to not yield to temptation, rescue me from the evil one. I should praise God, pray for his work in the world, pray for my daily needs, and pray for help in my own daily struggles.

"Our Father in heaven" indicates that God is not only majestic and holy but also personal and loving. The first part of this model for prayer is my statement of praise and commitment to hallow, or honor, God's holy name. I honor God's name by being careful to use it respectfully. If I use God's name lightly, I'm not remembering God's holiness.

The phrase "May your kingdom come soon" is a reference to God's spiritual reign, not my freedom. God's Kingdom is present in Christ's reign in believers' hearts, and will be complete when all evil is destroyed and God establishes the new heaven and earth.

When I pray, "May your will be done," I'm not resigning myself to fate but praying that God's perfect purpose will be accomplished in this world as well as in the next. God accomplishes his will on earth through people who willing obey him. This part allows me to offer myself as a doer of God's will, asking him to guide, lead, and give me the means to accomplish his purpose.

When I pray, "Give me today the food I need", I'm acknowledging that God is my sustainer and provider. It is a misconception to think that we provide for needs ourselves. We must trust God daily to provide what he knows we need.

God sometimes allows me to be tested by temptation. As His disciple, I should pray to be delivered from these trying times and for deliverance from Satan and his deceit. I will struggle with temptation, often it can be so subtle that we don't even realize what is happening. God has promised that he won't all me to be tempted beyond what I can bear. Therefore I ask God to help me recognize temptation and to give me the strength to overcome it and choose God's way instead.

Jesus gave me a startling warning about forgiveness: If I refuse to forgive others, God will also refuse to forgive me. When I don't forgive others, we are denying our common ground as sinners in need of God's forgiveness. God's forgiveness of sin is not the direct result of our forgiving others, but it is based on our realizing what forgiveness means. It is easy to ask God for forgiveness but difficult to grant it to others. Whenever I ask God to forgive me for sin, I should consider if I have forgiven those who have wronged me.

Being prayerless essentially make me powerless. No matter how busy I get, I must take time in my life for prayer. It is the greatest tool I have in my spiritual toolkit. The powers of hell cannot prevail against to power of prayer.

Prayer, is not about me sending God to do my will. Prayer is preparing myself to do God’s will. No matter the size of my need, the best way to approach it is by asking God to take charge. Request that He take the lead, and watch as the challenge dissipates before my very eyes. God can take my tragedy and turn it triumphant! He can hand me a victory so complete that those around me will want it to.

God is able, but He is waiting for me to give up my feeble attempts to handle all my own problems. Hand them over to Him to work on my behalf. My human resources are limited; God’s ae limitless. If I have a need today, I can simply lay it at the feet of the King and receive heaven’s answer.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

The Antidote to Worry

In review of Matthew 6:33 it says, “Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things shall be added to you.”

Bottom Line:
Seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness, He will provide the rest.

What this means to me:
More than anything else in my life, I need to put God’s work first and do what he wants. When I do he will provide me with everything else I need.

Jesus tells me not to worry about my everyday life. Life is more than food, and my body more than clothing. I’m reminded that none of my worries can add a single moment to my life. God cares so wonderfully for flowers, and birds, he will certainly care for me. So why have so little faith and worry?

My heavenly Father already knows all my needs. Therefore I should seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give me everything I need. I don't need to worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today's trouble are enough for today.

To "seek the Kingdom of God above all else" means for me to put God first in my life, to fill my thoughts with his desires, to take his character for my pattern, and to serve and obey him in everything. I need to consider what is really important to me? People, objects, goals, and other desires all compete for priority. Any of these can quickly become most important to me if I don't actively choose to give God first place each and every day.

I shouldn’t be always be on the go, moving in continuous circles, ending up as a constant traveler who never arrives at a destination. Stop for a minute and regroup. But always seek God first. Find out where He wants me to go, and then start out on that road. If I feel like the road I’m traveling is challenging, I’m reminded that the enemy attacks anyone God has chosen to promote. And warfare always surrounds the birth of a miracle.

Spiritual warfare is a way of life for the Believer, so strap on the full armor of God and head straight for the enemy. With God on your side, the victory is already won.

If I’m feeling hopelessly lost, or if my life isn’t going in the right direction, just stop. Ask God to chart my course anew, and then begin walking down the path He desires. My life will become a thing of beauty that will give me a deep sense of fulfillment all the days of my life.