Powerful!

SEPTEMBER 2

MATTHEW 7:1_Judge not…

Mercy sakes, if there is any phrase that is overplayed in our time it is, “Don’t judge me!”

Judging was not a part of Jesus’ agenda. John 12:47-48 (KJV), “47And if any man hear my words, and believe not, I judge him not: for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world.” Judgment was a part of the old covenant. When Jesus taught this sermon, He taught Law transformation. He transformed the Law with mercy. Jesus’ presence in the world is how mercy was added. This is how Jesus became the perfect balance of judgment and mercy.

Jesus did not take away judgment, He just added mercy. “48 He that rejecteth me, and receiveth not my words, hath one that judgeth him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day.”

When Jesus went back to heaven He had dramatically changed the world. He did it in a radical salty-lit-up fashion. His disciples should keep that world-changing alive in the same way. So, if Jesus was more mercy than judgment, that’s the life for salty-lit-up disciples. In the short amount of time Jesus spent on the earth, He affected the world in a way no one ever had.

John 12:19 (KJV), “The Pharisees therefore said among themselves, Perceive ye how ye prevail nothing? behold, the world is gone after him [Jesus].”

Powerful!

PRAYER

Almighty God, I want to follow Your example of mercy, not judgment. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.      

Christ changed the world—He calls me to!                                                                     

Why Make It Harder?

SEPTEMBER 1

MATTHEW 6:34_Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.

Focus on who God is and who you are in Him! Receive extra power for the hard days. Worry only makes the hard days harder. In this verse Jesus says something to the effect of, “Life in this world is hard enough—why make it harder? Jesus lets you know He’s with you all the way.

Jesus can provide.

That doesn’t mean you may not go through lean times. If you have no needs you will never experience how God can meet them. He’ll hold and guide you on the path of discipleship and add “all these things unto you.”

Proverbs 4:18 (KJV), “But the path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day.” Once you’ve committed to becoming salty-lit-up disciples for Jesus—that light just keeps on shining!  I Thessalonians 5:5 (KJV), “Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness.”

All days are not hard, or bad, or evil. The devil would have you believe otherwise. He tempts you to worry about the future. Live free by focusing more on who God is, His grace and mercy, and His phenomenal power to transform any circumstance!

PRAYER

God Who Transforms, Thank You for the bright days I’ve had, and the ones on the way! In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.                                                         

Christ is full of light—He fills me with His light!

The Believer Has the Bread of Life

AUGUST 22

MATTHEW 6:32_For after all these things do the Gentiles seek…

It is easy to say don’t worry, but it is not easy to do. Jesus leads to a place where it becomes easier, according to His design. Faith and trust. Faith and trust come from being filled with the Holy Spirit. The Spirit teaches truth. Truth leads to freedom! Even freedom from worry.  John 8:32 (KJV) is worth repeating several times, “And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free .” 

Remember, Gentiles are considered non-believers. Ones who do not put faith and trust in the Triune God—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Without faith and trust, opportunities for truth and freedom are reduced. John 8:36 (KJV), “If the son [Jesus] therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.”  

Worry fits into the design of a non-believer. When unbelievers fall upon hard times, they are without a source of overcoming power. Suppose a financial depression hits the country. Any money that may have gone toward comforts is now applied to the essential of food. It is a difficult time for believers as well as non-believers. The believer hurts during this time just as the non-believer.

But, the believer has the Bread of Life – in which to find hope.

PRAYER

Living God, Help me find hope by trusting in You. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.

Christ wants to give me hope—I will accept it!

Worrying or Hurting?

AUGUST 21

MATTHEW 6:31_saying, what shall ye eat or, what shall ye drink, or wherewithal shall ye be clothed?

You can worry yourself sick – literally. Worry takes such a toll on the soul, the body can become weary, weak, and sick. The heart takes the worst beating from worry. The body was not designed to stand up under constant worry. The soul (mind, will, emotions) was not designed to stand up under constant worry. The spirit was not designed to worry at all! The spirit was designed to praise!

You are designed in God’s image to know and worship Him. You are designed to joy in the Lord. Worry can’t stand up against joy. 

Don’t confuse worry with times of struggle and trial that cause suffering. If you don’t believe God has the power and the mercy to bring you through … then you are worrying. If you are suffering during a trial, but believe God will bring you through, you are not worrying. If you believe God will cause some good to come from your pain, you are not worrying. You are hurting. 

Romans 8:35,37 )KJV), “35Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?  37 Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him that loved us.”              

PRAYER

Lord of Love, Help me know there is nothing that can overpower Your love. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.

Christ’s love conquers—Whatever comes against me!

The Bling Melts

AUGUST 19

MATTHEW 6:31_saying, what shall ye eat or, what shall ye drink, or wherewithal shall ye be clothed?

Remember how Jesus referred to Himself as Bread and as Water? This is spiritual bread and water. It feeds the spirit and satisfies the soul. The spirit can overpower the body, but it must be yielded to Jesus. Just because you are a spiritual being does not automatically make you salty-lit-up disciples of Jesus. You either yield your spirit to Jesus or yield it to the devil.

The devil also has the power to meet needs – but anything he supplies is temporary. The devil’s temptations sparkle and dazzle with an abundance of bling. They offer a way out of suffering. Who doesn’t want a way out? The devil can satisfy your physical but never your spiritual. A spirit yielded to the devil can never be satisfied. Your spirit was created with a yearning to know and be in a loving relationship with Jesus. Once the devil has you in his trap – nothing satisfies. All his bling melts away and cravings are worse than they were before you yielded.

Adam and Eve’s son, Cain, met his needs the easy way. Their son, Abel, chose God’s way.  Genesis 4:7 (KJV), “If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door…”

Cain committed the first murder. His easy way cost the life of his brother.   

PRAYER

Lord Who Cares, Help me to be strong and choose Your way. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.

Christ can make me strong—I ask Him to!