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Post  Admin on Mon 06 Apr 2020, 10:41 pm

Date: April 6, 2020 at 2:27 AM
Topic: +DEV+  Overcoming


Overcoming

"Everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith. Who is it that overcomes the world? Only he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God."  1 John 5:4-5

Scripture Focus: 1 John 5

The New Testament word "overcome" means to be victorious. I'll never forget how our American POWs were so brutally held in North Vietnamese camps survived moments at a time by bringing to mind Bible verses they knew. Operation Homecoming began on February 12, 1973, and I watched on TV as the first of 591 men were released. 

Over the next months as their stories became known, we learned it was often God's Word that gave them the strength to overcome. They told stories of how they'd whisper Bible verses to each other, or pass verses written on toilet paper to each other whenever they could. In fact, a sacred moment in 1983, for me, was to hold in my hand one of those tiny POW toilet paper Bibles during a special chapel service in Korea. 

We may not have faced the torment these soldiers faced, but all of our lives come to times when there is nowhere to go but to God's Word. Its authority and power comfort us. Keep the precious promises of the Bible in your heart so you can face and overcome life's most difficult circumstances.

Insight: Our victory is secure because Jesus bought that victory for us. He has overcome death! Believe in Him!





If you have prayer requests for anything please email us and we will pray for them.





Please feel free to use this devotional to send on to your friends or share with your church fellowship and Bible study groups.

We are in need of Prayer and financial partners,
If you would like to become a prayer partner and or a financial partner with monthly or one time gifts.
A freewill offering to Restoration Ministry may be made via PayPal at our web site:    http://www.rollanet.org/~restore/donations.htm


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Post  Admin on Fri 03 Apr 2020, 11:19 pm

Date: April 3, 2020 at 12:26 AM

Topic: +DEV+  A Blind Beggar's Request



A Blind Beggar's Request

"What do you want me to do for you? Jesus asked him. The blind man said, Rabbi, I want to see."  Mark 10:51

Scripture Focus: Mark 10

I get goosebumps reading this story. Here is Bartimaeus, outcast of society, one whom nobody pays attention to except to tell him to hush up. Yet Jesus, surrounded by the mob and His disciples, hears the cry of this blind man. Jesus stops and asks what Bartimaeus wants. He could have asked for food, for money, for clothes. 

But being tired of going through life blind, ridiculed and despised, he asked for his sight. Jesus simply said, "Go, your faith has healed you." Be assured from this story that God is interested in us no matter what our condition. He hears beyond the noise of society to the cries of our heart. Nothing can keep us from Jesus. 

We can bring all our issues to Him. Out of profound gratitude, we follow Jesus. You see, it's not complicated. God desires to hear what's really on our hearts. Nothing is too big or too small. Bartimaeus was not theologically trained, but he acted on his faith and courage. 

Just imagine: When his eyes were opened, what is the first thing Bartimaeus saw? Jesus!

Insight: Never underestimate the compassion of Jesus to walk through life with you.

If you have prayer requests for anything please email us and we will pray for them.

Please feel free to use this devotional to send on to your friends or share with your church fellowship and Bible study groups.
We are in need of Prayer and financial partners,
If you would like to become a prayer partner and or a financial partner with monthly or one time gifts.
A freewill offering to Restoration Ministry may be made via PayPal at our web site:    http://www.rollanet.org/~restore/donations.htm
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Post  Admin on Thu 02 Apr 2020, 10:35 pm

Date: April 2, 2020 at 2:37 AM
Topic: +DEV+  Savior of the World


Savior of the World

"They said to the woman, We no longer believe just because of what you said; now we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this man really is the Savior of the world."   John 4:42

Scripture Focus: John 4

It's not complicated. As Xxx Ministries proclaims, "It's all about Jesus!" Why is this such an important issue? Chuck Colson said, "The most terrifying truth I have discovered in life is the banality of evil; the most ordinary people are capable of the most horrific sin; it is in us all" (2008). 

We need a Savior. The word savior designates a deliverer, a preserver, a rescuer-that's Jesus! In John 4 Jesus reaches out to the Samaritan woman. She was among those the Jews deemed unfit for salvation. But Jesus went out of His way to find her and show her that God's saving arm is long enough to rescue even those who seem beyond His reach. 

I once met up for lunch with a young man who told me, "I've been in the church all my life, was baptized and confirmed, but I don't know Jesus." I drew out on a napkin a simple explanation of salvation. There in the restaurant, he prayed to ask Jesus to come into his life. Are you nominally "religious"? Are you in outright rebellion to Christ? Anyone can draw near to the Savior of the world.

Insight: "For every man it must be Christ or eternal tragedy." (A.W. Tozer, 1988)



If you have prayer requests for anything please email us and we will pray for them.



Please feel free to use this devotional to send on to your friends or share with your church fellowship and Bible study groups.
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Post  Admin on Wed 01 Apr 2020, 8:22 pm

Date: April 1, 2020 at 12:15 AM

Topic: +DEV+  Vital to God's Plan

Vital to God's Plan

"For if you remain silent at this time, ,you and your father's family will perish. And who knows but that you have come to royal position for such a time as this?"  Esther 4:14

Scripture Focus: Esther 4

Never underestimate the call of God on your life. The Book of Esther highlights the survival of God's people amid hostility. It dramatically shows how God's chosen servants were instrumental in His plan. Haman, second in command in the royal court, wanted the Jews destroyed. He manipulated the king to rule for their execution. Meanwhile, Esther, a Jewish orphan raised by her cousin Mordecai, was brought on the scene at the appropriate time as queen. 

God used her to save her people. Both Esther and Mordecai were the most unlikely people to have a role in shaping the future of the nation. But God is not bound in His plans, using only successful, prominent, talented people. The book of Esther-in fact, much of the Bible!-is proof of that. It's not complicated for us. God desires our loyalty and submission. 

He may well place us in a significant position to offer hope and deliverance to those who desperately need Him. But more likely, he will use you right in the home, neighborhood, school, or workplace you're in each day.

Insight: God does not want us to sit idle. Seize the opportunities He gives!

If you have prayer requests for anything please email us and we will pray for them.

Please feel free to use this devotional to send on to your friends or share with your church fellowship and Bible study groups.

We are in need of Prayer and financial partners,
If you would like to become a prayer partner and or a financial partner with monthly or one time gifts.
A freewill offering to Restoration Ministry may be made via PayPal at our web site:    http://www.rollanet.org/~restore/donations.htm


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Post  Admin on Tue 31 Mar 2020, 9:14 pm

Date: March 31, 2020 at 1:23 AM
Topic: +DEV+  Salt and Light

Salt and Light

"You are the salt of the earth. ,You are the light of the world. ,Let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven."  Matthew 5:13-14&16

Scripture Focus: Matthew 5

Again, it's not complicated. There are volumes that describe our life of faith, yet here Jesus simply says that we are salt and light, proclaiming the good news in the way we live. Think of salt as that which provides flavor, brings healing, fights corruption, preserves, and creates thirst. And then think of light, that which floods in and illuminates the dark. 

Jesus is telling us that when we follow Him, our lives of faith offer flavor, lead to healing, preserve the spirit of others, and provide light in an otherwise dark, hopeless world. In such situations a friend may say, "Your love for Christ is contagious," or "I've learned God's truth from you. It's guiding my life," or "Your life of faith shines bright in the dark hole I'm in." These metaphors of salt and light indicate the powerful Christian influence we can have on hurting, searching souls around us. 

Our message is fresh, positive, exciting, constructive, and full of life. When the reality of Christ can be seen in our lives, our Heavenly Father is honored.

Insight: We are vessels for the Spirit of God to work and shine through. He has accomplished this in us!

If you have prayer requests for anything please email us and we will pray for them.

Please feel free to use this devotional to send on to your friends or share with your church fellowship and Bible study groups.

We are in need of Prayer and financial partners,
If you would like to become a prayer partner and or a financial partner with monthly or one time gifts.
A freewill offering to Restoration Ministry may be made via PayPal at our web site:    http://www.rollanet.org/~restore/donations.htm


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Post  Admin on Tue 31 Mar 2020, 12:15 am

Do you find yourself in the valley?

Now is the time to fully trust Him to guide you to a higher ground!  

Date: March 30, 2020 at 1:59 AM

Topic: +DEV+  Godly Influence

Godly Influence

"How great are his signs, how mighty his wonders! His kingdom is an eternal kingdom; his dominion endures from generation to generation."  Daniel 4:3

Scripture Focus: Daniel 4

If you know anything about King Nebuchadnezzar in the Bible, you would not expect these words to come from his mouth. But they did! The leader known for his wickedness was telling all the people how great God is! He even declared it was his pleasure to tell about the Most High God (vs. 1). How does this happen? Consider the work of God's Spirit through His chosen representative, Daniel. Somehow through Daniel's faithful commitment and trust in God, there came a time when his life influenced this king to consider the true King. 
Though we do not know of Nebuchadnezzar making a lasting choice to follow God, at this point he powerfully declares the Lord's mighty acts. Daniel's life of prayer may have left an impression on him. The commitment, humility, and thanksgiving of Daniel all may have stirred the heart of one of the world's most ruthless rulers. The Spirit was at work! Never underestimate the influence of a godly life and the power of prayer. Often our faith shines out for Jesus even in the midst of difficult times.


Insight: Nebuchadnezzar may have planned his course, but the LORD determined his steps (see Proverbs 16:9). He determines your path, too!

If you have prayer requests for anything please email us and we will pray for them.

Please feel free to use this devotional to send on to your friends or share with your church fellowship and Bible study groups.

We are in need of Prayer and financial partners,
If you would like to become a prayer partner and or a financial partner with monthly or one time gifts.
A freewill offering to Restoration Ministry may be made via PayPal at our web site:    http://www.rollanet.org/~restore/donations.htm


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Post  Admin on Sat 28 Mar 2020, 12:06 am

[size=34]Praise Song for the Pandemic[/size]

Praise be the nurses and doctors, every medical staff bent over flesh to offer care, for lives saved and lives lost, for showing up either way,
Praise for the farmers, tilling soil, planting seeds so food can grow, an act of hope if ever there was,
Praise be the janitors and garbage collectors, the grocery store clerks, and the truck drivers barreling through long quiet nights,
Give thanks for bus drivers, delivery persons, postal workers, and all those keeping an eye on water, gas, and electricity,
Blessings on our leaders, making hard choices for the common good, offering words of assurance,
Celebrate the scientists, working away to understand the thing that plagues us, to find an antidote, all the medicine makers, praise be the journalists keeping us informed,
Praise be the teachers, finding new ways to educate children from afar, and blessings on parents holding it together for them,
Blessed are the elderly and those with weakened immune systems, all those who worry for their health, praise for those who stay at home to protect them,
Blessed are the domestic violence victims, on lock down with abusers, the homeless and refugees,
Praise for the poets and artists, the singers and storytellers, all those who nourish with words and sound and color,
Blessed are the ministers and therapists of every kind, bringing words of comfort,
Blessed are the ones whose jobs are lost, who have no savings, who feel fear of the unknown gnawing,
Blessed are those in grief, especially who mourn alone, blessed are those who have passed into the Great Night,
Praise for police and firefighters, paramedics, and all who work to keep us safe, praise for all the workers and caregivers of every kind,
Praise for the sound of notifications, messages from friends reaching across the distance, give thanks for laughter and kindness,
Praise be our four-footed companions, with no forethought or anxiety, responding only in love,
Praise for the seas and rivers, forests and stones who teach us to endure,
Give thanks for your ancestors, for the wars and plagues they endured and survived, their resilience is in your bones, your blood,
Blessed is the water that flows over our hands and the soap that helps keep them clean, each time a baptism,
Praise every moment of stillness and silence, so new voices can be heard, praise the chance at slowness,
Praise be the birds who continue to sing the sky awake each day, praise for the primrose poking yellow petals from dark earth, blessed is the air clearing overhead so one day we can breathe deeply again,
And when this has passed may we say that love spread more quickly than any virus ever could, may we say this was not just an ending but also a place to begin.

—-Christine Valters Paintner, Abbey of the Arts
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Post  Admin on Thu 26 Mar 2020, 11:46 pm

Date: March 26, 2020 at 12:51 AM


Topic: +DEV+  Dig Down Deep


Dig Down Deep


"I will show you what he is like who comes to me and hears my words and puts them into practice. He is like a man building a house, who dug down deep and laid the foundation on rock."  Luke 6:47-48


Scripture Focus: Luke 6


What happens when we listen to Jesus' words and put them into practice? We are like a man digging down deep when he builds his house. He dug so deep in order to lay his foundation on rock. We can "dig down deep" into our Rock, Jesus Christ. How? The way you fall in love. When you meet someone that you think could be your partner for life, you get to know them; you spend a lot of time with them. 


It is no different with the Lover of our souls, except the deeper we go with Jesus, the more we will fall head over heels in love with Him, because He is perfect, never selfish or moody, and never rejects us. We're quick to go to God with our needs and demands. He wants us to do that, but He also wants to speak to us, to touch our hearts through His Word. Dig down deep in Jesus. When, not if, the floods come, the torrents striking against us will not shake our foundation because it is well built (vs. 48b). 


If our relationship with Christ is secure and we are assured of His everlasting love, no inundating storm can destroy us.


Insight: Secure your foundation before the torrent, so that you won't be shaken when it comes.


If you have prayer requests for anything please email us and we will pray for them.


Please feel free to use this devotional to send on to your friends or share with your church fellowship and Bible study groups.


We are in need of Prayer and financial partners,
If you would like to become a prayer partner and or a financial partner with monthly or one time gifts.
A freewill offering to Restoration Ministry may be made via PayPal at our web site:    http://www.rollanet.org/~restore/donations.htm


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Post  Admin on Thu 26 Mar 2020, 12:20 am

Date: March 25, 2020 at 1:31 AM

Topic: +DEV+  Beyond the Sea



Beyond the Sea

"Nor is it beyond the sea, so that you have to ask, 'Who will cross the sea to get it and proclaim it to us so we may obey it?' No, the word is very near you."  Deuteronomy 30:13-14

Scripture Focus: Deuteronomy 30

God's commands are not beyond us. He doesn't make it impossible to reach Him. We don't have to sail across oceans to find Him. The Word of the Lord is in your mouth and in your heart so you may obey it. In Romans 10 Paul quotes this Deuteronomy verse and then explains that it is a matter of faith. "If you confess with your mouth, 'Jesus is Lord,' and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved" (vs. 9). All that God asks of us is to believe. He does not require us to do certain things to obtain favor with Him. He loves us unconditionally and sent His Son, Jesus, to die for us. 

In John 6:28 the crowds ask Jesus, "What must we do to do the works God requires?" Jesus answers, "The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent" (vs. 29). It doesn't mean we won't do good works for God. Out of gratitude to Him, we certainly will. But we don't earn our salvation. 

Jesus is the One who "crossed the sea" for us-in fact, crossing all the way to death and back-to proclaim His love for us.

Insight: We were meant to have purpose in Jesus, but we are saved by faith alone, so no one can boast of his or her own good works.

If you have prayer requests for anything please email us and we will pray for them.

Please feel free to use this devotional to send on to your friends or share with your church fellowship and Bible study groups.

We are in need of Prayer and financial partners,
If you would like to become a prayer partner and or a financial partner with monthly or one time gifts.
A freewill offering to Restoration Ministry may be made via PayPal at our web site:    http://www.rollanet.org/~restore/donations.htm


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Post  Admin on Mon 23 Mar 2020, 11:44 pm

Date: March 23, 2020 at 2:23 AM

Topic: +DEV+  If Only, Part 2
If Only, Part 2
"Today, if only you would hear his voice."  Psalm 95:7b (NIV, 2011)

Scripture Focus: Psalm 95

There are those two forlorn little words again: "if only." The psalmist is remembering what happened to God's people when they didn't listen and hardened their hearts. God had delivered them from slavery in Egypt with the miraculous parting of the Red Sea. He led them through the desert, feeding them manna and quail and producing water from a rock. They had witnessed God's provision firsthand. But when they reached the border of Canaan, the Promised Land, they grew afraid. 

In His anger at their unbelief, God swore that–– except for Joshua and Caleb who followed Him wholeheartedly and believed in His greatness (Numbers 14:20-30) ––none of that generation would enter His rest. What a stark, hopeless forecast. We also have been urged, "See to it, brothers, that none of you has a sinful, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God" (Hebrews 3:12). 

Were it not for the fact that all God's promises have been fulfilled in Jesus, we too would despair. But promised rest awaits us, if only we will hear His voice.

Insight: "Take heed, if once we allow ourselves to distrust God, we may soon desert Him." (Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary, 1706)

If you have prayer requests for anything please email us and we will pray for them.

Please feel free to use this devotional to send on to your friends or share with your church fellowship and Bible study groups.

We are in need of Prayer and financial partners,
If you would like to become a prayer partner and or a financial partner with monthly or one time gifts.
A freewill offering to Restoration Ministry may be made via PayPal at our web site:    http://www.rollanet.org/~restore/donations.htm


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Post  Admin on Sat 21 Mar 2020, 1:26 am

Date: March 20, 2020 at 1:53 AM

Topic: +DEV+  If Only

If Only

"If only you had paid attention to my commands, your peace would have been like a river, your righteousness like the waves of the sea." Isaiah 48:18 

Scripture Focus: Isaiah 48

If only. Can you hear God's desperation for His people in those words? I have lived in that place of "if only" when I ignored the Lord and followed my own desires. And I had no peace. If only we will obey the Lord, our peace will flow continuously like a river, unceasingly like the waves of the sea. 

Often the struggle to obey is within. Many of us identify with Paul who said, "I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do" (Romans 7:15). We echo his sentiment in verse 24: "What a wretched man am I! Who will rescue me from this body of death?" The blessed answer is this: "Thanks be to God- through Jesus Christ our Lord!" (vs. 25) Jesus did for us what we cannot accomplish on our own. He lived a life of perfect obedience for us and paid the penalty for our sin. "Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ" (Romans 5:1). 

Even when we're not faithful, He forever will be, just as surely as the steady waves of the sea.

Insight: Let us not grieve the Lord and turn to the "idols" of the world, but give thanks for His provision of peace in Christ Jesus.

If you have prayer requests for anything please email us and we will pray for them.

Please feel free to use this devotional to send on to your friends or share with your church fellowship and Bible study groups.

We are in need of Prayer and financial partners,
If you would like to become a prayer partner and or a financial partner with monthly or one time gifts.
A freewill offering to Restoration Ministry may be made via PayPal at our web site:    http://www.rollanet.org/~restore/donations.htm


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Post  Admin on Thu 19 Mar 2020, 11:04 pm

Date: March 19, 2020 at 1:54 AM
Topic: +DEV+  I Want to See


I Want to See

"What do you want me to do for you? Jesus asked him. The blind man said, Rabbi, I want to see." Mark 10:51   

Scripture Focus: Mark 10

Blind Bartimaeus was begging by the roadside when Jesus walked by. He began shouting for Him, "Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!" When people tried to hush him, he shouted all the more. Jesus stopped, called him near, and asked, "What do you want me to do for you?" 

I can't help but think, Isn't it obvious? Perhaps Jesus is asking a deeper question than the words immediately convey. What do I want Jesus to do for me? What do I really want? I want what Bartimaeus wants: "I want to see." My physical vision is fine; what I want is to see Jesus in my life, to know Him and trust Him. Faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see (Hebrews 11:1). Daily we observe God's hand in our lives, things that the world would call "coincidences," things that a believer knows are the providences of God in His plan for us. Sometimes we miss the little graces that God gives us every day. 

That is what I want my eyes to be open to. If I know He is present in my day with me, what more could I ask for?

Insight: "I remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living." (Psalm 27:13)



If you have prayer requests for anything please email us and we will pray for them.



Please feel free to use this devotional to send on to your friends or share with your church fellowship and Bible study groups.


We are in need of Prayer and financial partners,
If you would like to become a prayer partner and or a financial partner with monthly or one time gifts.
A freewill offering to Restoration Ministry may be made via PayPal at our web site:    http://www.rollanet.org/~restore/donations.htm




Michael D. Inman
Admin
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Posts : 65799
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Post  Admin on Thu 19 Mar 2020, 12:02 am

Date: March 18, 2020 at 12:11 AM

Topic: +DEV+  Jesus, Living Water

Jesus, Living Water

"Jesus answered her, If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water."  John 4:10

Scripture Focus: John 4

We are all tempted at one time or another to "drink" from wells that can never quench our thirst. We seek success, wealth, approval, popularity, or ––as with the woman at the well–– romantic love. Like her, we will discover momentary happiness, not lasting joy. Only Jesus can provide that. 

Only the Living Water permanently quenches our thirst. Jesus told the woman, "If you knew, you would ask, and he would give." If we too will know Him and will ask of Him, He will give. The Lord knows our deep thirsts, and He is faithful to satisfy. Jesus goes on to say, "Whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst" (vs. 14). The words I give stand out to me. With all other "wells," we must draw, take, and pursue. 

Jesus offers Himself freely to us. He invites us to rest in His grace. Jesus gently led the Samaritan woman to admit her great need. He already knew of her sin, but didn't scorn her. He loved her anyway. If we will admit our need and trust His provision, our thirst will be satisfied. We'll be drenched in His perfect love


Insight: "Am I not enough mine own? Enough, mine own, for thee? All shalt thou find at last, only in Me." (Amy Carmichael, 1955)

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Post  Admin on Tue 17 Mar 2020, 10:15 pm

Water from a Rock

"He opened the rock, and water gushed out; like a river it flowed in the desert."  Psalm 105:41

Scripture Focus: Psalm 105

As commanded by the Lord, the Israelites came to camp in a place with no water. Though it's true that they needed water, they did not need to quarrel with Moses about it, as Exodus 17 says they did. They had forgotten the works of God. They didn't trust Him to meet their need. They were angry even to the point of stoning Moses. 

Oh, the patience of God with the Israelites, and with us! Sometimes we also quarrel with each other in our need, as if anyone but God could slake our thirst. He alone is faithful to provide. Think about the word "gushed" from Psalm 105. In the desert, completely depleted of our own resources, we are more reliant on the Lord than ever. When He provides, water doesn't just trickle out of the rock; it gushes! Submit to the times of bareness the Lord has ordained, and allow God to meet you. He abundantly supplies your needs in Jesus (see Philippians 4:19). 

It's tempting to run to distractions, people, addictions-wells that have no water. Run to the Rock instead, the One who was struck and crucified for you.

Insight: "My people have, forsaken me, the spring of living water, and have dug their own cisterns, broken cisterns that cannot hold water." (Jeremiah 2:13)

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Post  Admin on Mon 16 Mar 2020, 10:59 pm

Date: March 15, 2020 at 10:13 PM

Topic: +DEV+  Watching Expectantly

Watching Expectantly

"Why do you stand here looking into the sky? This same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen him go into heaven."   Acts 1:11

Scripture Focus: Acts 1

During the solar eclipse in August of 2017, many eyes looked to the sky to see this extraordinary event. People traveled far anticipating a better look at the eclipse, bringing their special glasses and telescopes with them. A friend noted that the world might be a different place if, as believers, we could be as serious about preparing for Christ's return one day from heaven. 

His comment caused me to think about how I'd respond if I were told when and where Jesus would return. Of course, no one knows the exact date or time, but we need to be ready. Fortunately, special glasses and handy viewing boxes are not necessary to watch for Jesus' coming. The best preparation for His return is to do as He said: "Be on guard! Be alert!" (Mark 13:33) I can also "be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have" (1 Peter 3:15), so others may be prepared as well. 

Are you getting ready for Jesus' return? It will truly be the biggest, most extraordinary event to ever occur on this planet.

Insight: "Marvelous message we bring,/ Glorious carol we sing,/ Wonderful word of the King,/ Jesus is coming again!" (John W. Peterson, 1957)

If you have prayer requests for anything please email us and we will pray for them.

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Post  Admin on Fri 13 Mar 2020, 12:32 am

Date: March 12, 2020 at 12:58 AM

Topic: +DEV+  We'd Expect Obedience

We'd Expect Obedience
"There is a way that seems right to a man, but in the end it leads to death."  Proverbs 14:12

Scripture Focus: Proverbs 14

Out of desperation, a man with leprosy had the courage to approach Jesus to be healed. The man knew Jesus could heal him, but would Jesus see such an outcast as worthy of healing? Yes! Jesus not only healed him, but He also touched him. The touch wasn't necessary for healing; it was to show His compassion and authority. Jesus touched an untouchable, and changed the leper's life. 

After this miracle, Jesus strongly warned the man to remain silent. We'd expect, in his changed life, he would willingly obey. But in direct disobedience, the man left and shared his story widely. Perhaps his joy was more than he could contain. Or maybe he just wanted to point others to Jesus. Still the fact remains: he disobeyed. 

This story makes me wonder how often I go ahead and do something for God, even when it's not His way. Maybe I think I'm doing God a favor, but I'm really running ahead and not listening to His call and timing. There is joy when I trust and obey what He says. Lord, whatever you ask, give us wisdom and courage to obey.

Insight: "Trust and obey, for there's no other way/ to be happy in Jesus, but to trust and obey." (John H. Sammis, 1887)

If you have prayer requests for anything please email us and we will pray for them.

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Post  Admin on Wed 11 Mar 2020, 10:58 pm

Parents Expectations



"Then Samson prayed to the Lord, 'O Sovereign LORD, remember me. O God, please strengthen me just once more, and let me with one blow get revenge on the Philistines."  Judges 16:28



Samson's parents raised their Nazarite son as the Lord commanded. Manoah and his wife watched Samson grow in the Spirit of the Lord. They probably marveled at God's wondrous gift to them. An angel had told them that their son would deliver Israel from the Philistines, but when Samson married a Philistine woman, he seemed to be straying from the plan. 



Wasn't he supposed to deliver from the enemy, not be involved with them? What went wrong? In God's plan, nothing was wrong at all. He was working through Samson's life to confront the Philistines (14:4). Though Samson let his passions guide him more than the Lord's Spirit, God faithfully used him in the end to conquer the enemy. We have a son who for a time rebelled and "strayed from the plan." I recall wondering how Samson's parents must have felt when their boy didn't deliver Israel as they envisioned. 



Sometimes we just can't see what God is doing in the life of a child or loved one. Trust Him to the end; He's working in all our wayward situations, fulfilling His promises.



Insight: "Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding." (Proverbs 3:5)

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Post  Admin on Tue 10 Mar 2020, 11:23 pm

Date: March 10, 2020 at 3:02 AM

Topic: +DEV+  Timely Expectations

Timely Expectations

"One day, after Moses had grown up, he went out to where his own people were and watched them at their hard labor. He saw an Egyptian beating a Hebrew, one of his own people."   Exodus 2:11


Scripture Focus: Exodus 2

We hear that timing is everything. Moses was saved as a baby. He was adopted by Pharaoh's daughter so he could grow to be strong and wise. God was preparing Moses to deliver the Israelites. When Moses saw the injustice which was inflicted upon the Israelites, he took the lead and stepped in to deliver them. 

But God's way was not murder, and God's timing was not immediate deliverance. Moses didn't expect a 40-year time-out in the desert, but this was exactly what God used to mold him into the humble leader necessary for delivering His people from Pharaoh (Numbers 12:3). 

There was a time when I had great expectations for ministry. I intended to be a church pastor, to be soldier for God's kingdom, and I wanted to do it my way. The Lord gave me a desert time-out that broke me, and ultimately built me up to know and trust Him even more. 

Our God is faithful to fulfill His calling in ways we do not imagine. Trust Him with your life, even when it means delayed or altered plans. He is faithfully preparing you in His perfect timing.

Insight: "He has made everything beautiful in its time." (Ecclesiastes 3:11)

If you have prayer requests for anything please email us and we will pray for them.

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Post  Admin on Fri 06 Mar 2020, 1:52 pm

Date: March 5, 2020 at 11:43 PM
Topic: +DEV+  Praying Expectantly

Praying Expectantly

"I am the LORD, the God of all mankind. Is anything too hard for me?"   Jeremiah 32:27

Scripture Focus: Jeremiah 32

Peter was in prison, and the believers were praying earnestly for his release. Did they expect him to be miraculously freed overnight? Actually, it seems not, because when Peter knocked on the door, no one believed it was really him (Acts 12:15). They were "astonished" when he entered the room. God had answered their prayers in a much bigger way than they expected. 

My friend Jane (not her real name) and her family faced some financial challenges while they were providing hospice care for her husband. They were able to make ends meet during a difficult time until their only working car died. This unexpected expense sent Jane crying out to the Lord. 

A few days later, her friend drove up and said she wanted to give Mary's family a car they were no longer using. Mary was astonished! God had answered her cry in a far bigger way than she expected. Though your request seems impossible, keep praying your prayers in faith. 

The Lord knows what you need and when you need it. Why even be astonished at His lavish goodness? Is anything too hard for Him?

Insight: "Never make the blunder of trying to forecast the way God is going to answer your prayer." (Oswald Chambers, 1935)

If you have prayer requests for anything please email us and we will pray for them

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Post  Admin on Thu 05 Mar 2020, 11:01 pm

Date: March 5, 2020 at 1:03 AM

 
Spirit Revelations
 
"I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s day, and I heard behind me a loud voice like the sound of a trumpet, saying, 'Write in a book what you see, and send it to the seven churches.'” – Revelation 1:10-11 NASB

How can we be ready to receive revelations from God? As we examine John’s life, we see that revelations started flowing while he was “in the Spirit.”

In that moment, he was filled with the Spirit, in tune with the Spirit, and sensitive to the Spirit. He was ready to hear because he was focused on God and His Word and freed from the control of the flesh and the world. And he was clean and forgiven in God’s sight.

Revelations kept coming. As John delivered messages to the seven churches, seven times he wrote, “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches” (Revelation 2:7, 11, 17, 29; 3:6, 13, 22). He knew these were messages from the Spirit that no one could understand without spiritual discernment. And it was while he was “in the Spirit” that John saw a throne “standing in Heaven, and One sitting on the throne” (Revelation 4:2).

The Bible assures us that God wants to give us more revelations and a deeper understanding into His Word in order to equip us, to help us receive more of His power, and to use us more in the lives of others.

What should you do? Seek to be more sensitive to His Spirit. Seek Him more intensely. Crave His presence. Fill your life with His Word. Pray. Listen and be ready to hear God speak to you through His Spirit.

Prayer
Holy Spirit, I seek Your presence. Teach me Your truths. Speak to me. Guide me. Help me to hear Your voice. In Jesus’ name, amen.

Extended Reading

Revelation 1



Topic: +DEV+  Expect God's Victory

Expect God's Victory

"Then Job replied to the LORD: I know that you can do all things; no plan of yours can be thwarted."  Job 42:1-2

Scripture Focus: Job 42

Job was wealthy and respected by those around him, and he was "blameless and upright" in God's eyes. However, in the span of one day, the Lord allowed Job to lose his servants, his livestock, and his sons and daughters. Soon after he was struck with physical illness. This is not how we expect God to treat those who trust Him, is it? 

Sometimes it's hard to understand what God is allowing. Parents who trained their son to love and know God now find their son in prison. A single friend delights in the Lord and desires marriage but has no husband. A godly young mom with three children loses her husband to cancer. These are the real situations of life. It would be easy for these and other hardships to make us question what God is doing. 

Take encouragement as you see the end of Job's story. Although he suffered much, God spoke to Job and brought him into a deeper relationship with Him (42:5). God's plan is always good. You may face dark circumstances, but the Light of the World is near. And He will never be defeated.

Insight: "I know that my Redeemer lives, and that in the end he will stand upon the earth." (Job 19:25)

If you have prayer requests for anything please email us and we will pray for them.

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Post  Admin on Wed 04 Mar 2020, 6:26 pm

Date: March 3, 2020 at 11:51 PM

Topic: +DEV+  Unexpected Dangers

Unexpected Dangers

"Then Queen Esther answered, If I have found favor with you, O king, and if it pleases your majesty, grant me my life-this is my petition. And spare my people-this is my request."  Esther 7:3


Scripture Focus: Esther 7

Esther faced a fearful situation. She was asked to speak to the king to save her people, but the only way to do this was when the king summoned her. Since it had been 30 days since she'd been called in, it could mean death for her to appear without the king's invitation. She begged her people to pray for her because the expectation of death was very real, and then Esther bravely approached the king to save her people. 

In 2014, there was a great need for doctors to treat Ebola patients in Liberia. The risks were high, yet medical missionary teams responded to help save people's lives. After two members of the team contracted the deadly disease, Franklin Graham was asked to comment and said, "I think when there's a crisis, God wants us to be there. He doesn't want us to run away. 

God has put us there for a reason, and He expects us to do something about it." Wherever the Lord has placed you, may you rise up in faith and answer His call. It may not necessarily mean you'll risk death, but you may indeed save a life.

Insight: "[There is] a message that, the church needs to hear right now: to act out of love instead of reacting out of fear." (Dr. Kent Brantly, 2014)

If you have prayer requests for anything please email us and we will pray for them.

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Post  Admin on Mon 02 Mar 2020, 9:51 pm

Date: March 2, 2020 at 1:58 AM

Topic: +DEV+  Fleeing Expectations

Fleeing Expectations

"You have heard that it was said, Love your neighbor and hate your enemy. But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you."  Matthew 5:43-44

Scripture Focus: Matthew 5

Jonah was called by God to preach a message of repentance to a city of Gentiles. Although these people were Israel's enemies and were known to be brutal, it wasn't fear of them that caused Jonah to flee. He knew that if he preached to the Ninevites, they might repent of their wickedness, and God would mercifully withhold judgment. 

He didn't want God to give them grace; he wanted them to be judged! 

With all the divisions that exist in our culture today, we often have wrong expectations of what people are like or what we think they deserve. Like Jonah, we don't want God to bless those who are opposed to us. But if we want to avoid a "belly of the fish" experience ourselves, we must remember that God's heart is to show mercy to all people, even our enemies. How do you view the people around you who are very different from you? When you begin to feel like Jonah did with the Ninevites, don't flee. Pause and pray, knowing the boundless grace God has shown you. 

You may be His instrument to show that grace to those who need Him most.

Insight: Rather than fleeing God's call to reach a lost world, face the world with His love.

If you have prayer requests for anything please email us and we will pray for them.

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Post  Admin on Fri 28 Feb 2020, 8:32 pm

Date: February 28, 2020 at 2:24 AM

Topic: +DEV+  An Unexpected Encounter

An Unexpected Encounter

"At this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not realize that it was Jesus."  John 20:14

Scripture Focus: John 20

Though Mary expected to see Jesus as she went to the tomb, she certainly did not anticipate seeing Him alive. She'd come with spices to properly anoint His body. His appearance was so unexpected, she didn't even recognize Him until He spoke. Jesus still wonderfully comes in ways we do not expect. 

In Flat River we had a creative and enthusiastic pastor who was an inspiration to me. When we met, he shared with us how most of his life he'd been a mining engineer who was skeptical of Christianity. One Sunday as he was taking a walk, he happened to pass a church while people were going in. He was intrigued and entered to see what foolish ideas were being presented. Instead of "foolishness," he heard the gospel. God spoke to his heart, and he trusted Jesus as his Savior. It was truly an unexpected encounter with the Lord! 

Where might you encounter Jesus? He comes unexpectedly in your time of loss, difficulty, or confusion. He'll meet you where you are, even if you have been avoiding Him. May He surprise you today.

Insight: "Open our eyes, Lord; we want to see Jesus; to reach out and touch Him; and say that we love Him." (Robert Cull, 1976)

If you have prayer requests for anything please email us and we will pray for them.


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Post  Admin on Thu 27 Feb 2020, 5:52 pm

Date: February 27, 2020 at 12:26 AM

Topic: +DEV+  Unexpected Battle Plans

Unexpected Battle Plans

"For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms."  Ephesians 6:12

Scripture Focus: Ephesians 6

These are turbulent times. News reports abound with disasters, divisions, and despair. As the battle is raging, how would God have us respond? Scripture demonstrates that the Lord uses some unusual tactics in warfare. Gideon's story was one example of God's unexpected warfare strategies. 

God chose the runt of the weakest clan for a leader and then pared his forces down to 300 men to match an army of 135,000. Rather than swords, Gideon and his men were using torches in pitchers with trumpets as their weapons. With these unusual orders, anyone might be fearful, but God graciously gave Gideon confirmation of victory. He then went forth in the strength of the Lord (Judges 7:13-15). Can we apply this same strategy to our difficulties? Yes! Whatever spiritual battles are raging around you, go forth in the strength of the Lord. 

When you face the challenges of the world with the light of Christ shining brightly, when you sound the trumpet call of the gospel, you point a desperate world to Jesus. He alone is our Victor!

Insight: "God must do it, it is His own work. But we are not to be idle; instrumentality is to be used." (Charles Spurgeon, 1865)

If you have prayer requests for anything please email us and we will pray for them.


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Post  Admin on Wed 26 Feb 2020, 11:03 pm

Date: February 26, 2020 at 1:53 AM

Topic: +DEV+  Outward Expectations

Outward Expectations

"Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The LORD does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart."  1 Samuel 16:7

Scripture Focus: 1 Samuel 16

Although he was the youngest of many brothers, it was the shepherd boy, David, whom God chose to be king. David's father never even called him in to be considered for the anointing. Samuel saw the oldest brother, Eliab, as the prime candidate. But the Lord reminded Samuel that the heart matters more than looks. 

How easily we respond like Samuel. Don't we often look at outward appearances with all our unrealistic expectations? A church elder told us about a time he brought a friend with cerebral palsy to a church meeting. This young man could only speak through a communication board, so the meeting went on without its members taking much notice of him. At one point, he started to make a noise, so they turned and asked him to be quiet. After another noise, he began to spell a response. The insightful comment he shared humbled the whole group. This man was used by the Lord to turn the tide of the discussion. 

Their focus turned from his disability to his ability. May we learn to see people not by outward appearances but by the heart, as Jesus has seen us.

Insight: "There is no one who is insignificant in the purpose of God." (Alistair Begg, 2017)

If you have prayer requests for anything please email us and we will pray for them.

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