Friday 13 Nov 2020

November 13: Romans 8:35-39
Key Verse: Romans 8:37
No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.
No matter how many times we are told “we are safe,” we still doubt and have this nagging fear we are not as safe as we should be! To a large extent this is normal human behaviour, but it is also learned behaviour because we see people projecting this on our TVs and social media, but we do not see enough of the truth Christ is trying to spread – the truth we are totally safe in His arms!
Does this mean we will never have to face any hardships or confrontation? Far from it because we may well face more confrontation because we are making a stand against what people see as the social norm. We are working to bring hope and assurance to people where circumstances are taking everything away from communities.
None of this will be able to separate us from the love of God. His love remains strong and secure no matter what we face in our lives. It was the ultimate declaration of love when Jesus gave His own life up on the cross so we could live forever in Heaven with Him. Nothing on earth will detract from that demonstration of love despite people trying to say otherwise.
When an act of love like that is shown, nothing can take away from it; but, because we are who we are, we allow time to slowly erode our hope until we think there is no more hope. Bu, when we turn to fully face Christ and ask Him for love and support, we again see the fullness and extraordinary depth of that love.
Points to Ponder:
Are you getting down with lock-downs?
Will you turn to face Christ and ask Him for strength to carry on?

Thursday 12 Nov 2020

November 12: 1 John 4:7-12
Key Verse: 1 John 4:9
This is how God showed his love among us: he sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him.
How do you show love to others? If, like me, you loved to hug people, this year has been very difficult because of the pandemic and not being able to mix with people, never mind hugging them! But love goes a whole lot deeper that a hug or a kiss, love is at the centre of your being and you have to be the one who allows others to see into yourself.
We know from the scriptures Jesus encouraged us to be like lights shining on hills rather than hiding behind bushes and so should it be with our love. Love is no good if it is going to be hidden from others, it has to be shared openly and willingly. This love we have within us was given to us from God for the good of everyone; it is something we live with and need in our lives.
God showed His extraordinary love for us by allowing His Son to come and live amongst us and share that love with people in amazing and miraculous ways. Jesus then showed even more love by taking the blame for our wrong-doings and permanently nailing it to the tree when He died for us. Even our scriptures remind us there is no greater love than a person laying down their life for others.
God has shown us the way through His scripture. Jesus came and demonstrated the way through His actions. He now asks each one of us to continue this string of love by always sharing it with others. None of us have seen God the Father because none of us are in Heaven yet, not counting the people who have already died and are enjoying eternal life in Heaven already; but we can live out the love on earth before we get to Heaven by sharing and caring.
Points to Ponder:
How do you show your love to others?
What will you do differently today to demonstrate love?

Wednesday 11 Nov 2020

November 11: Psalm 86:14-17
Key Verse: Psalm 86:15
But you, Lord, are a compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness.
What goes through your mind when people attack or abuse you for seemingly no reason? I’m sure we have all faced some opposition to what we do as Christians, but when people attack you because they don’t know what you are trying to do, it can get very disheartening. Jesus wants us to know we have a friend in Him who is standing with us and defending us at every opportunity!
It is easy to attack back when we are attacked, but this is not what God is trying to teach us. He knows we are going to face opposition and knows we are going to find it hard – but if we are willing to call on Him for support and trust Him with that support, we can get through so much more.
Unlike our short fuses which get tried over and over again, God has compassion and grace which extends far beyond our means and our minds. He will not get angry with us just because we slip up and do something wrong. He will not condemn us just because we tripped up. God’s love for us means we can still make mistakes and know He is going to continue loving for us and caring for us!
We long to see positive action being taken when we go out to do something for God. We love to see some rewards for what we do... because that is what we are like. God longs to see us do things for Him too, but He will never hold it against us when we fail to live up to righteousness goals. Always be on the watch for the things God does in your life because He is doing amazing things all the time!
Points to Ponder:
Do you live life for the rewards?
Will you humble yourself and live for God?

Tuesday 10 Nov 2020

November 10: Luke 22:35-38
Key Verse: Luke 22:36
He said to them, ‘But now if you have a purse, take it, and also a bag; and if you don’t have a sword, sell your cloak and buy one.
How many times have you stopped what you were doing because you saw someone else doing what you were trying to achieve? How many times have you stopped just because the going got a bit tough for you? If we are brutally honest, we have all thrown in the towel at some stage in our lives just because it got a bit difficult or it looked like someone else was doing it better!
Jesus knew what lay ahead for the next few hours and days, yet He continued to press forward doing everything which was required so we could enjoy the gift He was giving us! Jesus knew a sword would be needed to complete His work and He wanted to make sure they had a sword at hand. He did not promise a smooth ride all the way. He did not promise an easy life for the disciples. But He gave them hope to look forward to!
I am writing this just as the news is breaking about a viable vaccine being available to help against Coronavirus! We are being given hope, but even with that hope we are still a long way off being ‘safe’ because we are facing terrible times ahead until such time as the vaccine is made available to everyone. There will still be heartbreak and sorry as people continue to die and be adversely affected by the virus – but we have hope!
Jesus had to be counted as a rebel, as a villain, as someone who was working against the country in order for Him to be hung on the cross for our cause. He knew what lay ahead, but knew He had to endure so we could have hope. Just as we were talking about people in the wars and conflicts before us laying down their lives for our sake, so too are we called to lay down our pride and desires to give others hope in Christ!
Points to Ponder:
How often do you focus on other's needs?
Will you set aside your desires for someone else's needs today?

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