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Tapping Into God’s Power

“Your mistake is that you don’t know the Scriptures, and you don’t know the power of God. (Matthew 22:29)

Do you see it? Jesus made a direct connection between knowing the Bible and leading a powerful life. Lukewarm men are in error because they “don’t know the Scriptures” and therefore “don’t know the power of God.” Their capabilities don’t equal their intentions. Without the right training, their soil remains bare, stony, and full of weeds. And as you’ll soon see, by “know the Scriptures,” Jesus was talking about a lot more than mere head knowledge.

On the other hand, transformed men “truly hear and understand God’s word and produce a harvest.” Digging into the Word of God is easily the number one factor that differentiates men who have tapped into God’s power.”

Excerpted from Man Alive by Patrick Morley

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El Roi: The God Who Sees Me

The first person to call God by the name El Roi was Hagar. A woman used. Abused. Tossed away. Driven away. Running away. She was all that and more…

Hagar was a slave who had been sexually used and verbally abused. Hagar was a woman amazed that God heard her cries and saw her misery, that He took note of her condition and actually spoke to her.

Falling on her face, Hager gave God the name El Roi, the God Who Sees. “I have now seen the One who sees me,” she cried (verse 13). She had heard God. She had seen God. More important, God had seen Hagar. God had heard Hagar…

Today, remember. Remember who God is and that He will do what He said He will do. He is El Roi, the God who sees me. He [ … ]

The Greatest Story Ever Told

“Great stories need excellent beginnings and endings to give meaning to their middles. The first three chapters of God’s story brilliantly set up the unfolding drama of redemption. The last three chapters show how God will judge evil, reward good, and live with his children forever on the New Earth.

God’s story is the greatest story ever told and the prototype of all redemptive stories.”

Excerpted from If God is Good: Why Do We Hurt? by Randy Alcorn

Daily Reflection: How can you live with optimism in the “middle” now, knowing the beginning and end of God’s redemptive story?

A Never-Changing Word

“Political and economic systems change, but God and His Word never change…
The Bible presents the truth about ourselves, life, the world, and God. These claims occasionally overlap with other world philosophies and religions, but more often than not they stand apart. They present a unique, countercultural vision and worldview that challenges every other value system…

The message of the gospel contradicts both the moralist view of the religiously devoted and the immorality of the pagan. It challenges the hopelessness of naturalism while inviting the agnostic to come and see. It humbles the religious adherent who has found comfort in self-righteousness while offering a way to exalt the outcast. It unveils a mind-blowing kaleidoscope into the nature of God. He is revealed to be more loving, wise, just, beautiful, holy, accepting, approachable, and powerful than anyone would imagine.”

Excerpted [ … ]

Pleasing God in Heaven

“The Christians living in Philippi had given gifts of money, which Paul described as ‘a fragrant offering, an acceptable sacrifice, pleasing to God’ (Philippians 4:18). Another translation gives us this perspective on the gifts: ‘[They are the] fragrant odor of an offering and sacrifice which God welcomes and in which He delights’ (amp).

Our gifts today can do a lot of good. They can feed the hungry, heal the sick, encourage the brokenhearted, and spread the good news. But most importantly, they can please God in heaven, connecting His children to Him.
Think about that.”

Excerpted from Plastic Donuts by Jeff Anderson

Daily Reflection: Are you giving to simply do good or do you give to offer a pleasing sacrifice to God as well?

The Promise of Suffering

There are many promises for the believer given by God in the scriptures, but there’s one promise we’re often hesitant to claim, or even acknowledge as part and parcel of our fellowship with Jesus Christ. It’s the promise of suffering.

Which of us, left to ourselves, would choose suffering over joy? And yet when suffering comes, haven’t we experienced God’s grace in its midst?

For there is also a promise in suffering. The loss of a dream, a loved one, a job, good health or independence, all these temporal experiences for the believer bring about eternal gain—in a realization of the need for Christ’s sustaining strength, for His peace that is deeper than our understanding, and for the sweetness of intimacy in our trust in and fellowship with Him, tested through the fires of disappointment, setback, or grief.

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Beauty in the Tension

“The kingdom of God is the kingdom of life, health, beauty, salvation, and freedom (to name just a few of its qualities). The enemy of the kingdom, whom the Bible refers to as Satan, is always attacking that life, that health, that beauty. He attacks spiritual freedom. He wants us to be paralyzed. His relentless attacks are why things are not the way they are supposed to be—yet. But in the midst of all the tensions of life, the kingdom of God comes crashing in. It usually crashes in quietly, though.

…God has this amazing judo move that He uses to attack the kingdom of darkness. He causes all things to work for good to those who love Him, the Bible says. God takes what is meant for evil and turns it for good, if we trust Him at those [ … ]

A Special Place

“Resist the urge to say you’re too old, too young, too busy, too scared, too worn out, too washed up, too anything to be useful to God. Truth is, you’ve always been part of his love-the-world plan. Need proof? From the day he formed you in your mother’s womb, God has watched over your every step, making sure you got where you needed to go.
When you stumbled, it was God who steadied you.
When you fell, it was God who rescued you.
When you lost your way, it was God who carried you home.
Why? Because he knows you fully, loves you completely, and holds you close to his heart. God will never give up on you…You claim a special place in his Big Picture.”

Excerpted from The Girl’s Still Got It by Liz Curtis Higgs [ … ]

Taking Flight with a “Yes”

“Neither of us knew quite what to think, but we exited the car, stood with our arms and faces raised toward the heavens, and sang. It was pretty amazing, especially for a couple of conservative Sisterchicks like us. I don’t even remember what we sang. What I do remember is that something in our spirits took flight that August morning in the moss-scented forest. We were willing to take a risk. Try something new. Trust God in a new way.”

Excerpted from Take Flight! by Robin Jones Gunn and Cindy Hannan

Daily Reflection: How can you show your trust in God today?

Love Like I Couldn’t Describe

“‘You don’t really believe God saves tears, do you?’

‘I think he counts them.’

‘Why would he do that?’

‘That’s when he’s the most attentive.’

‘How do you know that?’

‘He hangs out around human suffering.’

‘How do you know?’

‘Look at where Jesus went. Where there was pain, there was Jesus.’

‘But you’re Jewish.’

‘Just on my mother’s side.’

‘Then he must be at the hospital a lot. You think he’s here beside Bender?’

‘Of course.’

‘Do you ever feel him?’ she asked.

‘I started out just talking to him, like he’s a regular guy. With due respect, he’s, well, God and all that. But then one day, he was just there.’

‘Did he say anything?’

‘Not out loud. But I felt him with me, like he was there listening to me.’

‘What was he like?’

‘Love like I [ … ]