Sunday, July 22, 2018

JULY 22, 2018 God’s Delivering Power - Joyce Meyer daily devotion

Notice in today's scripture that Daniel got on his knees to pray and thank God three times a day. He had a habit of prayer and thanksgiving. When we get on our knees before the Lord, we humble ourselves and say with our actions, "Lord, I reverence and honor You. I am nothing without You. I need You and I humble myself in Your presence." 
Daniel was delivered from a den of hungry lions. His enemies threw him into the lions' den because they were jealous of him, a foreigner who rose to a high position in their country's government. When they conspired to hurt him, they knew he was a righteous man and they could not accuse him of wrongdoing. So, they asked the king to issue a decree stating that anyone who did not worship the local gods or the king would be thrown into the lions' den. 
Daniel was not afraid. He refused to compromise his worship. He kept up his habit of praying and praising his God three times a day. He did get thrown into the lions' den, but God shut the mouths of the lions and Daniel emerged unharmed. 
We can never underestimate the power of worshiping God. Like Daniel, our prayer and worship needs to be a habit and we need to keep doing it, no matter what anyone says. When enemies or circumstances rise against us, we can count on God to hear our prayers, receive our worship, and deliver us. 
Prayer Starter: Lord, You are so good. Help me to make prayer and worship a part of my everyday life, knowing You are my joy, peace, strength, and deliverance. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

July 22 Nothing to Lose Gloria Copeland

Say ye to the righteous, that it shall be well with him: for they shall eat the fruit of their doings. Woe unto the wicked! it shall be ill with him: for the reward of his hands shall be given him.
Isaiah 3:10-11
Have you ever been afraid to give yourself totally to the Lord because you think you might be deprived of some pleasure in this life? Chances are, you have. That's because Satan is working overtime to convince you that he can really make your life worth living. But don't believe him for a minute. The real truth is, yielding completely to the Lord won't cost you anything that's worth having. It will only cause you to live life to its fullest!
Jesus' life on earth was a perfect example of a totally yielded life. He was a walking example of the benefits godly living brings. Everywhere He went, Jesus made the deaf to hear, the blind to see, the lame to walk. He lived in perfect peace and absolute victory.
That all sounds pretty good to me. All He missed out on was the devil getting dominion over Him to steal, kill and destroy. In fact, the devil couldn't do anything to Him until, by the Father's will, He laid down His life. Until that time Jesus walked in total victory over the enemy.
Do you think you would miss out on a lot if you lived that way? Of course not! You can walk in that same anointing and power and glory of God that Jesus did.
Do you have to give up your whole life to do it? Yes! You have to trade your life for the life of God. You have to trade your sickness for His healing, your poverty for His prosperity, your anxiety for His peace, your sin for His salvation.
So why hesitate? When it gets right down to it, you really have nothing to lose.
Scripture Reading:
Psalm 37:7-23
© 1991 Eagle Mountain International Church, Inc. aka: Kenneth Copeland Publications    All rights reserved.

Hope Anyway - Our Daily Bread Ministries daily devotion 22 July

My comfort in my suffering is this: Your promise preserves my life. Psalm 119:50
Among the hundreds of articles I’ve written for Our Daily Bread since 1988, a few stick in my mind. One such article is from the mid-1990s when I told of a time our three girls were away at camp or on mission trips, so six-year-old Steve and I had some guy time.
As we were enjoying an excursion to the airport, Steve turned to me and said, “It’s not as much fun without Melissa,” his eight-year-old sister and sidekick. Neither of us knew then how poignant those words would turn out to be. Life indeed has not been “as much fun” for the years since Mell died in a car accident as a teenager. The passage of time may dull the ache, but nothing takes the pain away completely. Time cannot heal that wound. But here’s something that can help: listening to, meditating on, and savoring the solace promised by the God of all comfort.
Listen: “Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail” (Lamentations 3:22).
Meditate: “In the day of trouble he will keep me safe in his dwelling” (Psalm 27:5).
Savor: “My comfort in my suffering is this: Your promise preserves my life” (119:50).
Life can never be the same again when someone we love is gone. But God’s promises bring hope and comfort. 
Thank You, God, that You are near. You’re always by my side. I’m grateful for Your comfort in my pain and for Your peace.
God’s Word is the true source of comfort.
By Dave Branon | See Other Authors

INSIGHT

When God, who is Spirit (John 4:24), is portrayed in Scripture as having human features it’s called anthropomorphism (from anthropos, “man” and morphe, “form”). Literally speaking, God does not have eyes, ears, a face, or arms (Psalm 34:15–16; Isaiah 59:1–2). These descriptions, however, help us better grasp who God is because we can see parallels in our human experience. They help us understand that the Lord carefully attends to those who belong to Him. 
When Jesus came to Earth, figures of speech gave way to reality. The eternal Word who was God (John 1:1) became flesh and dwelt among us (v. 14). Jesus looked on the multitudes with compassion (Matthew 9:36), He made Himself available to those whose bodies were diseased and broken (Mark 1:29–34); and His body was wounded so our sins would be forgiven (1 Peter 2:24). Through both figure of speech in the Old Testament and the real-time ministry of Jesus in the New Testament we understand that the God of heaven cares deeply. And we have hope!
Ponder the truth that in Jesus the world experienced “God with us” (see Matthew 1:23).

Plant Today, Then Be Patient for the Harvest BY RICK WARREN — JULY 21, 2018

“Let us not become tired of doing good; for if we do not give up, the time will come when we will reap the harvest” (Galatians 6:9 GNT).
The time to start planting is now.
I talk to people all the time who say, “One of these days, I’m going to . . . .” They’re going to serve more one of these days. Or when they retire. Or when they get a raise. They’re going to increase their giving one of these days.
“One of these days” is none of these days. You don’t wait for things to get better; you start planting now. Why? Because the sooner you plant, the longer you’re going to enjoy the harvest in your life.
But the harvest is not always going to come in your time. There’s always a delay between sowing and reaping. You plant in one season, and you harvest in another.
You have to be patient and not give up!
This is one of the principles that the Kingdom of God operates on. In Mark 4:26-28, Jesus says, “This is what the kingdom of God is like. A man scatters seed on the ground. Night and day, whether he sleeps or gets up, the seed spouts and grows, though he does not know how. All by itself the soil produces grain — first the stalk, then the head, then the full kernel in the head” (NIV).
The results will come, but they will come slowly and as part of a process. And because it takes time, “Let us not become tired of doing good; for if we do not give up, the time will come when we will reap the harvest” (Galatians 6:9 GNT).
Choose to forget about last year’s crop failure. Instead, start focusing on the long-term harvest in your life. You didn’t get the way you are financially overnight. You took years to mess things up, and it’s going to take a while to put things back together. There is a time of delay between sowing and reaping.
The Bible says in Psalm 126:5-6, “Those who plant in tears will harvest with shouts of joy. They weep as they go to plant their seed, but they sing as they return with the harvest” (NLT).
What need have you been grieving over? Maybe you’ve lost your job. Maybe you’ve lost your health. Maybe you’ve lost a loved one. Maybe you’ve lost your savings. Maybe you’ve lost half of your retirement in the last few years. Maybe you’ve lost your dream.
Mourning is okay; moaning is not. Instead of moaning, you need to plant a seed, because whatever you need more of, you need to give away.
Today is the day to plant the seed.
Talk It Over

  • If you could give financial advice to your younger self, what would you say? What can you learn from your financial mistakes that you can apply to your situation now?
  • What would you have time to start doing today to move forward with your finances if you were able to let go of your past mistakes and financial failures?
  • What do you want to receive more of in your life? How can you plant that seed and give yourself away today so that you will one day reap your own harvest?

Pray and Obey - Joyce Meyer Ministries daily devotion 21 July

...You have opened my ears and given me the capacity to hear [and obey Your word]....
— Psalm 40:6 (AMP)
For many years, I wanted God to speak to me, but I wanted to pick and choose what things to obey. I wanted to do what He said if it was easy and I thought it was a good idea, but if I didn't like what I heard, I acted like it wasn't from God!
Some of what God says to you will be very exciting. Other things He says may not be so thrilling, but that doesn't mean they won't work out for your good if you will simply obey. For example, if God tells you that you need to apologize because you were rude to someone, it won't work for you to respond, "Well, that person was rude to me too!" If you talk back to Him with excuses, you may have prayed and even heard God's voice, but you didn't obey.
Looking back at more than four decades of walking with God and being in ministry, I have to say that the simplest explanation for the success we have enjoyed is that we have learned to pray, hear from God, and then do what He tells us to do. Over the years, as I have sought God and pressed forward in what I feel He has told me to do, I can say that what I have done more than anything else is simply to pray and obey. Doing so has not always been popular, but it has worked. 
If you want God's plan for your life, I can give you the recipe in its most basic form: pray and obey. God has given you the capacity to do both, and if you do it continually, you will be moving right along in His will for your life.
Prayer Starter: Thank You, Lord, that You always have my best in mind. Please help me to be even more sensitive to hearing Your voice, and help me to trust and obey You in things big and small. In Jesus’ Name, Amen. 

July 21 The Key to Confidence Gloria Copeland

Beloved, if our heart condemn us not, then have we confidence toward God. And whatsoever we ask, we receive of him, because we keep his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight.
1 John 3:21-22
You can never get away with disobeying God.
Some people think they can. They think that if no one finds out about it, it won't hurt anything. After all, God is merciful. He's not going to hold it against them, right? And if no one else knows...what's the difference?
What they don't realize is that their own hearts will start giving them problems. Their own hearts will start to condemn them. Everyone else may think they're great. They may be spouting faith talk all over the place, but when they come before God in prayer, they'll be filled with doubts and fears that keep their prayers from being answered.
That's one of the reasons why it's so important to live in obedience to the Lord. A life of obedience will give you a spiritual boldness you've never had before. It will give you a boldness in prayer, a boldness in faith. It will give you a confidence toward God, as the Apostle John says, that those who are trying to get away with sin don't have.
I'm not saying that you have to be perfect—that you should never make a mistake. Just that you should walk in obedience to the light you have. Take the time to listen and be responsive to the Spirit of God. When He tells you to do something, do it.
As you do, that confidence will rise up within you. It won't be something you mentally drummed up or talked yourself into. It will just be there. Instead of being consumed with doubts and feelings that the Word of God isn't going to work for you, you'll find yourself filled with faith that it will. You'll begin to trust God and to flow with Him. You'll come to a place the Bible calls "rest in the Lord."
Remember this: Even though the eternal price for your sins has been paid, a life of disobedience will still cost you dearly. It will cost you the boldness that is rightfully yours in Jesus. It will rob you of faith and rock you with fear.
Don't let the condemnation of your heart cut your confidence short. Do the things that are pleasing in God's sight and walk tall in the kingdom of God.
Scripture Reading:
1 John 3:21-22
© 1991 Eagle Mountain International Church, Inc. aka: Kenneth Copeland Publications    All rights reserved.

Shelter from the Storm - Our Daily Bread Ministries daily devotion 21 July Saturday

But as for me, how good it is to be near God! I have made the Sovereign Lord my shelter. Psalm 73:28 nlt
When I lived in Oklahoma I had a friend who “chased” tornados. John tracked the storms carefully through radio contact with other chasers and local radar, trying to keep a safe distance while observing their destructive paths so he could report sudden changes to people in harm’s way.
One day a funnel cloud changed course so abruptly John found himself in grave danger. Fortunately, he found shelter and was spared.
John’s experience that afternoon makes me think of another destructive path: sin in our lives. The Bible tells us, “Each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their own evil desire and enticed. Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death” (James 1:14–15).
There’s a progression here. What may at first seem harmless can soon spin out of control and wreak havoc. But when temptation threatens, God offers us shelter from the gathering storm.
God’s Word tells us He would never tempt us, and we can blame our choices only on ourselves. But when we “are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that [we] can endure it” (1 Corinthians 10:13). As we turn to Him and call on Him for help in the moment of temptation, Jesus gives us the strength we need to overcome.
Jesus is our shelter forever.
Lord Jesus, You conquered sin and death forever through Your cross and empty tomb! Help me to live and thrive in the forgiveness only You can give.
Our Savior calms temptation’s storm.
By James Banks | See Other Authors

INSIGHT

As this passage in James 1:12–18 clearly teaches, God does not tempt us. Yet in this life temptations are sure to come. In fact, God may permit temptation in order to strengthen our faith as well as our dependence on Him. It’s an immeasurable comfort to know that our heavenly Father will “provide a way out” of temptation, as promised in 1 Corinthians 10:13. But what do we do in those times when we’ve made a mess of things?
It’s always best to run to our Father the moment we’re faced with temptation. But we can turn to Him at any point, even—especially—if we are trying to run from Him. Our God is such a loving and gracious Father. We can always come to Him.
To keep from getting to a point of desperation, it might be wise to ask ourselves these questions: Where do my temptations typically come from? What things might I need to get rid of that cause me to be tempted? Do I have trusted accountability partners to help me in my faith journey?

JULY 22, 2018 God’s Delivering Power - Joyce Meyer daily devotion

Notice in today's scripture that Daniel got on his knees to pray and thank God three times a day. He had a habit of prayer and thanksg...