Get Over The Hump Day: Supreme Devotional

 

When I was a kid I saw Jaws. I also saw a news report about someone getting bit by a shark. Soon after I was swimming in a friends pool, and much like a child afraid of the dark for no reason, I found myself wanting to get out of the pool because I was in the deep end and I felt like there was a shark at the bottom just waiting to attack! Can you hear that Jaws music? Hey, it could happen! In reality, it couldn’t happen. I mean, of course some James Bond enemy could show up and throw a tiny shark in the pool, etc. but in the real world that we live in there are no sharks living in chlorinated family pools. I was deceived by my own feelings and emotions into believing something that could never be true. The same thing is happening on a much larger scale to lots of people out there. We’re swimming in a pool of media driven arguments and are deceived into thinking that things around us are changing and that we should be afraid. As I sit and read opinion after opinion on media sites I realize why I stopped watching and reading the news years ago. It’s a useless flood of opinions that lead us in argumentative circles. I quit watching the news when I had children because I realized that every time I watched the news it was always bad news. It was people arguing over the way they see things. It’s apparently no fun to watch when people are getting along, so I turned it off. I didn’t read the news papers and I was…..happier. Then I started trying to make a difference by making people’s day a little brighter on social media sites. In doing so, I was now privy once again to every news story out there, and again I find myself drawn in for some reason to read the filth of opinions that flood through my room via the computer and I shut it off because I find myself drawn in with the desire to give my own opinion, realizing that others have already done that and all it did was prompt someone else to give their opinion and the roller coaster rolls on. No matter what we share, people can spin it however they want so that they can then spew out their opinion. Rest assured fellow believers. There is peace.There is good news. There is only ONE SUPREME COURT and it is not held in the USA.

No matter which way a vote goes, no matter how much people want to spin or spit out words, I will hold to the Word of God. That is The Supreme Word, written by a Supreme Being who IS GOD and His son is Jesus Christ and He came to seek and save the lost. (LUKE 19:10 For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.”)

If anything, we should be reminded that the enemy is a deceiver and so people will be deceived.(JOHN 8:44 “…He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth because there is no truth in him Whenever he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies.)

If everyone who thought they were saved were actually saved there would be no such thing as deception right? Don’t throw those pearls to the pigs (MATTHEW 7:6 “Do not give what is holy to the dogs; nor cast your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you in pieces.) Instead remember that there is nothing new under the sun (ECCLESIASTES 1:9 That which has been is that which will be, And that which has been done is that which will be done. So there is nothing new under the sun.).

Remember that we have a job to do and it’s not to change opinions on social issues, it’s to change hearts by spreading the gospel (MARK 16:15 “And He said to them, ‘Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.’”/MATTHEW 28:19-20 “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”)

We know what the word says and so we understand that there is a judgement coming for everyone. (ROMANS 2:4-11 Or do you think lightly of the riches of His kindness and tolerance and patience, not knowing that the kindness of God leads you to repentance? But because of your stubbornness and unrepentant heart you are storing up wrath for yourself in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God, who will render to each person according to his deeds: to those who by perseverance in doing good seek for glory and honor and immortality, eternal life; but to those who are selfishly ambitious and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, wrath and indignation. There will be tribulation and distress for every soul of man who does evil, of the Jew first and also of the Greek, but glory and honor and peace to everyone who does good, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. For there is no partiality with God/ 2 CORINTHIANS 5:10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may be recompensed for his deeds in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad.)

Knowing that it’s coming spurs me on to share the Truth and waste less time on arguing with people who really do not care about what I believe. Be encouraged my brothers and sisters, God hasn’t changed nor will He. His Word is clear, but the enemy is trying to make us think there are sharks in our pools, when in reality God is as clear and as majestic and as in control as He ever has been and as He ever will be. This is our warning (GALATIANS 6:7 Be not deceived, God is not mocked; for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.)

Stay calm believers because HE IS. He is right. He is just. He will repay. He will save. He forgives. He sustains. He protects. He rewards. He punishes. He will destroy. He will restore. He was. He IS. He is to come. He is God. He is Supreme and HE IS ALIVE! So take heart weary believers and laugh out loud again today knowing that as bad as it seems, it’s not “news to Him”.

Persevere and remember they’re going out from us because they never were with us (1 JOHN 2:19 They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us: but they went out, that they might be made manifest that they were not all of us..) Stand firm. Kneel humbly. Hug lovingly. Teach truthfully. Pray diligently. Do not compromise your beliefs. Do not argue. Do not hate. Have Faith. Have Hope. Have Love. Get out from in front of that screen and get into that Bible. Pray for the lost and deceived. Many who claim to know Him, He will say to them “Depart from Me”. (MATTHEW 7:21-23 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.)

So check yourself to see whether you are in the faith (2 CORINTHIANS 13:5 Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you fail to meet the test!.) Then, when you’re clear on that, go make a difference. Cling to what is right, and trust God to do His good will in you. (Philippians 2:13 for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure.)
Enjoy this day and know that God is still the only One that is Supreme.

Get Over The Hump Day: It’s Who You Know Devotional

Years ago I moved to Orlando to try to get a job at one of the theme parks. When I got there the guy I was supposed to move in with told me his family was going through some difficulties and so I had to find another place to live. Thankfully another wonderful family took me in for a while. I started looking for a job and went to Universal Studios to fill out an application and I told them I wanted to do some acting on one of the rides. They had King Kong, Jaws, etc. They told me all those positions had been filled and I went home feeling defeated. I talked to a friend about it who had worked there before and he gave me the name of the lady in charge of hiring actors so I went back and filled out a second application. On this application I said I wanted to wait tables and in small writing beside it I also put that I’d like to work on one of the rides. They finally brought me back for an interview to wait tables and when she asked me what I wanted to do I said, “I’d like to work on one of the rides.” She then responded, “Oh, well it says that you wanted to wait tables.” Then I replied, “Well if you’ll look there I also put down I’d like to work on one of the rides.” She then told me, as I’d heard before, that those jobs were already taken. This time I was ready and I responded that I knew this lady (we’ll call her Wanda) through one of my friends and asked if she would go ask Wanda if I could interview for the job on one of the rides. The lady interviewing me seemed a bit agitated but since I’d thrown out Wanda’s name, and Wanda was really the one in charge, I believe she felt obligated to at least go ask her. The lady left and came back in a few minutes telling me to come back tomorrow and interview with Wanda for one of the rides. I went back in the next day and did a reading and Wanda gave me my choice. I chose to work on The Jaws ride and I had a blast. The point here is that it matters WHO YOU KNOW.

It just so happens that I know someone waaaaaay more important than Wanda. I know personally and intimately The God of the universe. Yet I still find myself in a tailspin of worry and doubt sometimes. Do you ever feel that way? I know it’s crazy. I know it’s even wrong. God has promised that He would take care of our needs ( MATTHEW 6:25-34). He doesn’t break His promises. I was taking a shower the other day and I was thinking about God (I think the shower is one of the last places left that a person can get away from a cell phone) and I began to ask some questions to myself. Is He sufficient? Can He do all things? Does He care about me? Is He worthy to be trusted? Think about that. Is God worthy to be trusted? I think I hear you saying, “Yes!, yes HE IS!” Unfortunately it doesn’t take us long to forget that does it? And that drives me crazy. Sometimes I worry about work or my family or certain situations as if for some reason God has fallen asleep. Good news everyone! God never sleeps (PSALM 121:4). He is indeed WORTHY to be TRUSTED, so relax and let’s read some verses together.
PROVERBS 3:5 ESV
TRUST in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.
ROMANS 8:28 ESV
And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.
PSALM 37:4-6 ESV
Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord; TRUST in him, and he will act. He will bring forth your righteousness as the light, and your justice as the noonday.
PROVERBS 3:6 ESV
In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.
PSALM 46:10 ESV
“Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!”
HEBREWS 13:8 ESV
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.
MARK 5:36 ESV
But overhearing what they said, Jesus said to the ruler of the synagogue, “Do not fear, only believe.”
ROMANS 15:13 ESV
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.
PSALM 9:10 ESV
And those who know your name put their TRUST in you, for you, O Lord, have not forsaken those who seek you.
PSALM 28:7 ESV
The Lord is my strength and my shield; in him my heart TRUSTS, and I am helped; my heart exults, and with my song I give thanks to him.
JEREMIAH 29:11 ESV
For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.
PSALM 112:7 ESV
He is not afraid of bad news; his heart is firm, TRUSTING in the Lord.
HEBREWS 11:6 ESV
And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him.
ISAIAH 26:3 ESV
You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he TRUSTS in you.
JOSHUA 1:9 ESV
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”
PSALM 91:1-16 ESV
He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will abide in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say to the Lord, “My refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I TRUST.” For he will deliver you from the snare of the fowler and from the deadly pestilence. He will cover you with his pinions, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness is a shield and buckler. You will not fear the terror of the night, nor the arrow that flies by day, …
ISAIAH 43:2-3 ESV
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you. For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior. I give Egypt as your ransom, Cush and Seba in exchange for you.
JOB 13:15 ESV
Though he slay me, I will hope in him; yet I will argue my ways to his face.
PSLAM 40:1-17 ESV
To the choirmaster. A Psalm of David. I waited patiently for the Lord; he inclined to me and heard my cry. He drew me up from the pit of destruction, out of the miry bog, and set my feet upon a rock, making my steps secure. He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God. Many will see and fear, and put their trust in the Lord. BLESSED IS THE MAN WHO MAKES THE LORD HIS TRUST, who does not turn to the proud, to those who go astray after a lie! You have multiplied, O Lord my God, your wondrous deeds and your thoughts toward us; none can compare with you! I will proclaim and tell of them, yet they are more than can be told. …
JEREMIAH 17:7-8 ESV
“BLESSED IS THE MAN WHO TRUSTS IN THE LORD, WHOSE TRUST IS THE LORD. He is like a tree planted by water, that sends out its roots by the stream, and does not fear when heat comes, for its leaves remain green, and is not anxious in the year of drought, for it does not cease to bear fruit.”
MARK 9:24 ESV
Immediately the father of the child cried out and said, “I believe; help my unbelief!”
Do you know Jesus Christ? If so, ask yourself, “Is He worthy of my trust?” Ask yourself that question and keep those verses above handy anytime you begin to worry or doubt. Memorize those verses. The word is our only offensive weapon. Draw out that sword and destroy that doubt, worry and fear with the perfect powerful promises of God. Be encouraged, He knows what’s going on in your life. Have a better day as you let go of that stress and take a step closer to God by TRUSTING HIM.

Get Over The Hump Day: Fathers Devotional

When I was about 10 years old I was at home and it was Christmas time. One of my favorite times of the year. We had ordered a pizza and my dad and I went to pick it up. We got in our pale blue Volkswagen bug and headed out. There were candles lit along side the road and Christmas lights blinking and we were listening to Christmas tunes on the radio. It took us forever because traffic was backed up but it didn’t matter cause we were just hanging out. Today when I sat down to write something about fathers, that is what came to my mind. I have some great memories, but that one sticks out to me today. It’s simple and so is what I’d like to say to fathers everywhere. When Bean and Bailey do Men’s Conferences we take with us this simple message: Be There.
Yep. That’s it. Be there. Be at as many games as you can. Be there to answer your kids questions. Be there to pray with them at night and tuck them in. Be there to teach them how to throw, catch, spike, kick or whatever else you can do with a ball. Be there to teach them how to drive. Be there to help with the homework until it gets to hard for you…..uhm, like up until 3rd grade math I guess. Be there to encourage them. Be there to discipline them. Be there to teach them what the scriptures say. Be there to help pick out clothes (even if it’s a dress). Be there in the kitchen cooking together. Be there celebrating the win, or the graduation, or the fact that they walked or talked or swam for the first time or finally sat through dinner without whining, or getting up, or passing gas. Do you get the point? BE THERE.
I understand that we need to work. I also am well acquainted with the fact that many of us have to travel for work. I also understand that we may have to miss a birthday or a ball game or a recital, etc. What I don’t understand is the laziness of choosing to work too much. That’s right, I said the laziness of working too much. Many men would prefer to work longer hours than have to put the time in training their children the correct way or stay out just a little longer so that dinner is ready when they get home instead of getting home to make cooking the dinner fun and involving everyone. You’re tired? Who cares? Let me tell you who cares. Nobody. I’m not saying you’re not legitimately tired and that occasionally you’ll need to rest instead of play with the kids or help your wife do whatever she wants you to help her with, but if it’s a habit, break it. There are some things men should break. Bad, lazy and selfish habits are one of them or is that three of them? Either way, let’s take responsibility. If you’re not gonna love and cherish and honor you’re wife, then be celibate and focus on working and witnessing. If you can’t make time for your kids, don’t have them cause they need their father. I’m not gonna get any dad of the year awards anytime soon but I’m certainly gonna try to honor God by the way I try to love my family and provide for them. Speaking of providing for them. You don’t need a lot of money to do that, I’d pretty much guarantee that your wife and kids would rather have you around more than they’d rather have a new toy. I could go on all day about this, but I won’t because you men understand what I’m saying already. I’ve struggled with my selfishness for years. I’m trying so hard to kill it. I got up this morning at 6:30am to run with my wife before she went to work (I hear you morning people thinking, “uhm that’s not that early”……but that’s a big deal for me because I’m a comedian sooo uhm, yeah I don’t generally like getting up early so give me some points here, lol) and then came home and did my Bible study and I’ve fed the kids breakfast and already yelled at them once and am planning the work day here at the house. That’s not because it’s what I wanted to do today, but I know I’ll be thankful that I did it because THE WAY I FEEL DOESN’T MATTER, ITS THE WAY I FAITH THAT MATTERS. Faith comes first, then hopefully the feelings follow. If they don’t, that’s fine too because I know doing what’s right gives me a peace I can’t find anywhere else, I’m pretty sure that’s the point of the caddyshack, meshack and that billy goat in Daniel chapter 3.
Let me just leave you guys with a few scriptures to meditate on today. Remember that God is THE FATHER and that HE IS LOVE. It’s our responsibility to not only love our wives and children and others but to understand how much our heavenly father loves us. Yes men, YOUR HEAVENLY FATHER LOVES YOU and

He wants you to love others, so let’s start there:
MARK 12:30-31
and you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ The second is this, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”
(Now that we have a solid foundation)
EPHESIANS 5:25,28-29
Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her,
28 So husbands ought also to love their own wives as their own bodies. HE WHO LOVES HIS OWN WIFE LOVES HIMSELF; 29 for no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ also does the church,
(Loving God comes first, then your wife, then your kids)
PROVERBS 22:6
Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.
(training = hard work)
EPHESIANS 6:4
Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.
DEUTERONOMY 6:7
You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise.
(teach them God’s word “diligently”)
COLOSSIANS 3:21
Fathers, do not provoke your children, lest they become discouraged.
PROVERBS 29:17
Discipline your son, and he will give you rest; he will give delight to your heart.
PSALM 127:3
Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward.

Remember men
ROMANS 8:14
For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God.
You’re either a son of the living God or you’re not. I pray you’ll know God as your Father and then strive to be like Him. Now purpose in your hearts to BE LIKE CHRIST and to BE THERE as much as you can. Now go enjoy that new tie you’re about to get for Father’s Day!

Get Over The Hump Day: Sincere Devotional

I used to sing in church. I always got so nervous. I just had a hard time being….well, serious. Don’t get me wrong. I loved it, but I hated being so nervous and honestly being so transparent in front of people. When I’m singing to God, I’m very emotional and it’s heart felt. It took me a long time to realize I wasn’t performing for the people sitting out in the pews. A wise old pastor (my dad) taught me the correct perspective on the church service. The pastor and the people leading in song are not the performers at all. They are facilitating and obeying God to the best of the abilities and opportunities they’ve been given. The audience is not the church members in the pews. The audience is God Himself. The performers are those people out in the pews or chairs or whatever you sit in at your church. God is watching us. Our hearts will perform for God and tell our story. God will see it. He will know why you came to church (or why you didn’t). He will be watching and that is important to know. We must all come ready and prepared for we are all performing for The King whether we know it or not. That is, I believe, a much clearer and appropriate perspective to have when going to church. I believe the word I’m looking for is Sincerity. If we would sincerely worship Jesus Christ and sincerely care about those He cares about, many of our arguments would fade into the background as we all began taking part in caring more about the proper order to life and less about ourselves. The proper order is constantly stated in this question, “What are your priorities?” If you ask that in church, you probably wouldn’t get a soul searching sincere answer. What you probably would hear is, “God, family, and work…” because the truth is that most of us “know” certain answers, we just don’t sincerely live out those answers, which makes our lives look, well…..insincere. So take a moment and reevaluate and let’s ask ourselves, “Where are my priorities?” Let’s Sincerely consider that today. Our hearts should be sincerely performing for God, so let’s not waste our time. Let’s see what God has shared with us about this thing called Sincerity.
2 CORINTHIANS 8:8
I am not speaking this as a command, but as proving through the earnestness of others the SINCERITY OF YOUR LOVE also.
(Is your love sincere?)
EPHESIANS 6:24
Grace be with all those who LOVE OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST with incorruptible love.
(Do you sincerely love Jesus?)
JOSHUA 24:14
“Now, therefore, fear the LORD and serve Him in SINCERITY and truth; and put away the gods which your fathers served beyond the River and in Egypt, and serve the LORD.
(Do you sincerely revere The Lord and serve Him?)
1 TIMOTHY 1:5
But the goal of our instruction is love from a pure heart and a good conscience and a SINCERE FAITH.
(Is your faith sincere?)
ROMANS 12:9
Let love be without hypocrisy Abhor what is evil; cling to what is good.
(Do you sincerely hate what is evil and cling to what is good or do you compromise what is good to get along with what is evil to be more acceptable to this world?)
1 PETER 1:22
Since you have in obedience to the truth purified your souls for a SINCERE LOVE OF THE BRETHREN, fervently love one another from the heart,
(Do you sincerely love other Christians?)
1 JOHN 3:18
Little children, let us not love with word or with tongue, but in deed and truth.
(Can people see your sincerity lived out through your life’s actions?)
2 CORINTHIANS 1:12
For our proud confidence is this: the testimony of our conscience, that in holiness and GODLY SINCERITY, not in fleshly wisdom but IN THE GRACE OF GOD, we have conducted ourselves in the world, and especially toward you.
(Do you conduct yourselves towards others sincerely?)
2 CORINTHIANS 2:17
For we are not like many, peddling the word of God, but as FROM SINCERITY, but as from God, WE SPEAK in Christ in the sight of God.
(Do you present things to others sincerely?)
1 THESSALONIANS 2:3-5
For our exhortation does not come from error or impurity or by way of deceit; but just as we have been approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel, so we speak, not as pleasing men, but GOD who EXAMINES OUR HEARTS. For we never came with flattering speech, as you know, nor with a pretext for greed…
(Is your heart sincere?)
This is just something to meditate on today. The fact that God sees the heart and can tell if we are sincere. The question is not, “Were you ever sincere or have you shown to be sincere at times?” The question is, “Where is your heart right NOW? Have you grown cold, thinking the church service exists to entertain you? Do you half heartedly drudge through the songs or even through your whole day?” Sincerely spend some time with God today considering what He has done for you. When you consider Him, His sincerity will overtake you and consume you and you’ll know He has refreshed your heart. The beginning of sincerity always begins with getting our priorities back in line. GOD is your focus. Sincerely love and meditate on Him and the rest will follow.

May these scriptures sincerely challenge and refresh you today.

Get Over The Hump Day: At The Beach When It’s Raining

I’m at the beach right now and it’s cold and rainy. That’s the bad news. The great news is that we’re with awesome friends so we’re having fun. That said, the point is when someone packs to go to the beach, what they are expecting is warm weather, sand, sun, etc. It’s like traveling all the way across the country to get to Disney World or Wally World just to find out that it’s closed for the month. Something about rain on your wedding day or a free ride when you’ve already paid comes to mind. What I’m saying is that we can all tell when something has a purpose and that purpose is not being met. If you pack and go to the beach, you assume the purpose of the beach is sand and sun and fun, the purpose of Disney is to spend hours in line meeting Mice and Princesses and the purpose of Wally World…..well, Marty Moose and roller coasters of course.
I guess what I’m saying is that Christians also have a purpose and it becomes painfully evident when a believer is not fulfilling that purpose. Christians that are always complaining, gossiping, working for the purpose of making more and more money or missing out on time with the family when you don’t have to just to make a little more green. There are thousands of examples and I’m not trying to point fingers, what I’d like to be doing is shedding light so someone might read this and simply think and pray something like this: “God am I fulfilling the purpose you have for me or am I just living day to day with no real purpose?” Don’t you want to be in the sand and sun when you’re at the beach? Do you expect Disney to be closed when you get there with no warning at all? Let’s take seriously our part in this walk of life. Let’s remember today that WE HAVE A PURPOSE. We should be salt and light (Matthew 5:13-16 (NASB) “YOU ARE THE SALT OF THE EARTH; but if the salt has become tasteless, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled under foot by men. “YOU ARE THE LIGHT OF THE WORLD. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden; nor does anyone light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on the lamp stand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.)
There is something expected of us as believers. Truth should burst forth from us unashamedly mixed with the joy and love that flows from the heart of one who has been loved and redeemed by a Savior who conquered hell when He died for us. Correction falls from our lips dripping with the empathy of understanding that it could and might someday be us needing the same correction. Love comes out of us with a humility only someone who has been saved from drowning in the sea of sin could understand. Loyalty is clear. Jesus is The One and Only and whose approval we seek and need. We are all different but we’re all in the same boat, with the same agenda and the same Savior. Once you’ve been pulled from the water you’re more aware of the dangers and so you watch for others who are struggling to keep from drowning in the same sea of sin you were once in and you’re trying to throw them the life preserver. You care and so you share the Truth. We serve Jesus Christ and therefore we always and forever will serve a purpose. We are not perfect, but we all point to The One who IS.
Listen and meditate on these verses today:
JEREMIAH 29:11 ESV
For I know the PLANS I HAVE FOR YOU, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.
(He has plans for you)
PROVERBS 16:4 ESV
The Lord has made everything for its PURPOSE, even the wicked for the day of trouble.
(“Everything” includes you. You were made for a purpose.)
1 PETER 2:9 ESV
But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that YOU MAY PROCLAIM the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.
(You should be proclaiming)
ROMANS 8:28 ESV
And we know that for THOSE WHO LOVE GOD all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his PURPOSE.
(Do you love God? Then you have a purpose!)
PSALM 138:8 ESV
The Lord will fulfill his PURPOSE FOR ME; your steadfast love, O Lord, endures forever. Do not forsake the work of your hands.
(Other believers knew what we need to know, that He will fulfill His purpose for us.)
COLOSSIANS 1:16 ESV For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—ALL THINGS WERE CREATED THROUGH HIM AND FOR HIM.
(You were created for Him, not for yourself, so living for yourself will never be fulfilling your purpose.)
EPHESIANS 2:10 ESV For we are his workmanship, CREATED IN CHRIST JESUS FOR GOOD WORKS, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.
(You were created to do good works, get to it!).
1 CORINTHIANS 6:19-20 ESV Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So GLORIFY GOD IN YOUR BODY.
(The purpose of that body is to Glorify God!!!)
ROMANS 11:36 ESV
For FROM HIM AND THROUGH HIM AND TO HIM ARE ALL THINGS. To him be glory forever. Amen.
(Direct your work and life To HIM )
MATTHEW 28:18-20 ESV
And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. GO THEREFORE AND MAKE DISCIPLES of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
(Share The Gospel)
1 CORINTHIANS 10:31 ESV
So, whether you eat or drink, or WHATEVER YOU DO, DO ALL TO THE GLORY OF GOD.
Maybe your life looks like a cloudy day at the beach, it may be time to be the sunshine in someones cloudy day. I’m learning that rain at the beach is bearable if others you care about are with you. Go now, realize your purpose and purpose to do it all to the glory of God!

Get Over The Hump Day Devotional: Why It Feels Like God Has Failed You

When I was about 8 years old I read this verse: MATTHEW 17:20 He replied, “Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.” I was at church and I was standing on the softball field by myself looking out at the mountains. I believed that God was able to do what He said and so I began to tell the mountains to move. I stood there and prayed in my heart and in my head and watched those mountains just stand there. No movement, none at all. I began to wonder if I lacked the faith of a tiny seed or if God just wasn’t hearing my prayers. I never doubted that God could move the mountain, but I certainly wondered why He didn’t. God had failed me, or I had failed Him by having too little faith. Fast forward to college on a mission trip in Chattanooga, TN. We went to have breakfast with a group of widows. They would meet and have prayer together. This little woman began to pray and as she prayed she began to say, “God I’m not asking You to move these mountains, I’m just asking for the strength to climb.” I’ve never forgotten that prayer. I’ve often asked The Lord for the strength to climb since that day. Here’s why I think we feel God has failed us so many times.

 

I’ve lost loved ones unexpectedly, I’ve had many lost job opportunities throughout the years, as well as many big opportunities that I’d prayed for that didn’t work out. And some that just came to me that I wasn’t even looking for and I got excited about them and they ended up falling through. I’ve talked with some pretty big name people in the Christian music world that gave me advice and made some promises that never came to fruition. I’ve hoped and prayed for things that I’ve never gotten and I’ve struggled to pay off debts even though I felt I’d made wise decisions. I’ve prayed for things for others that didn’t work out the way I wanted them to work out and I’ve asked God what seems like a million times to send me guidance and I felt like I didn’t get an answer…not to mention needing friends at times when there wasn’t one to be found. God had failed me over and over and over again. That is…if He promised to give me everything that I asked for right when I asked for it and to get me what I wanted to make me happy. If that is what He promised then He did indeed fail me at times. But rest assured He never promised us that we’d get what we wanted, when we wanted it. As a matter of fact when you look it over it sure seems He has some spoiled kids doesn’t it? I’ll go even further to say that I don’t find anywhere in The Bible where He promises that we’ll be “happy” all the time here on this earth. I won’t elaborate on that right now. I’m going to try to stick to this one point. Why does it “seem” that God is failing us?

 

I think the disappointment comes because we know and understand that God is just that…GOD. He owns everything, He controls everything, He is in charge. Nothing is too difficult for God. There’s no amount of money that He can’t provide, there’s no amount of healing that is too hard for Him, there’s no situation that He can’t fix. We read about Jesus walking the earth and touching and healing and providing for the needs of others. Calming storms, healing sickness, creating food, walking on water, even raising the dead! Then why can’t He see that I need work or that my friend needs healing?!? Maybe we have missed the point. Maybe this life is really all about the next life. Maybe we need to look beyond what we want when we’re praying and ask God to reveal to us what we need to be praying for. Or maybe we are spoiled, selfish children and when we don’t get what we want we feel God has failed us. That sounds harsh but is probably true in many circumstances. Even if that is the case, rest assured that God is not tired of hearing your prayers. He loves you. He’s patient and kind and He wants to hear you pray. He is listening to His children. We are imperfect and we’re imperfect parents. But He is not. He is perfect and long-suffering and no matter how we “feel” He will never and has never let us down. He’s not mad at us because we’re mad at Him. He doesn’t walk away when you yell at Him. He doesn’t hate that thing about you that you may hate or your spouse may complain about. He loves you perfectly. That is why He doesn’t give us what we want, when we want it. This life is all about the next one. Listen to Him as He tries to tell us that. (ROMANS 14:7-87 For not one of us lives for himself, and not one dies for himself; for if we live, WE LIVE FOR THE LORD, or if we die, we die for the Lord; therefore whether we live or die, we are the Lord’s).

 

Faith is more than moving mountains, it’s trusting He will give you the strength to climb (Hebrews 11:1, “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things NOT SEEN.”) This thing called “Faith” has substance to it, but it can’t be seen or always felt, it must be believed with your head and your heart. It is not blind, it is solid because it comes from trusting God’s word.

 

Sometimes this life gets hard, but that’s so we’ll gain what we really need. (ROMANS 5:1-5 Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have obtained our introduction by faith into this grace in which we stand; and we exult in hope of the glory of God. And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that TRIBULATION BRINGS ABOUT PERSEVERANCE; AND PERSEVERANCE, PROVEN CHARACTER; AND PROVEN CHARACTER, HOPE; and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.).

 

God has never failed me. It sure feels like He has sometimes. I can still think of times that I feel like He let me down. Yep, it’s true. Even now as I write this I can think of moments in my life that I don’t understand and that I “feel” like He let me down. Whew, it feels good to be honest about thatdoesn’t it? Here’s the thing: It doesn’t matter how I “feel”, it only matters what is true. I can feel like 2+2 equals 6 all I want but it will always be 4. There will be times we may feel God has let us down but let me assure you He hasn’t. He loves you. He will never let you down. Look at Him hanging on that cross and remember that God loved you so much that He sent His own Son to die so that you could know Him and be known by Him. He won’t withhold what is good for you. (JOHN 3:16)

 

 The TRUTH is He has never failed us. HEBREWS 13:5 Make sure that your character is free from the love of money, being content with what you have; for He Himself has said, “I WILL NEVER DESERT YOU, NOR WILL I EVER FORSAKE YOU,”). I hope you feel loved when you read that but even if you don’t feel it, that’s ok. It’s still true. Believe it and maybe the feeling will catch up with the truth.

By Jackson Bailey