Starting Point

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“If you want to see clearly, let God be your starting point.”

TB

Murky

When we lean on our flesh and our own understanding, the world is murky, dark, and full of misleading principles. Friends, the world is not ours and if we don’t understand that foundational context, we will be a slave to our experiences. To avoid this trap, let God be your foundation.

Clear

The world doesn’t change because we have God. No, we change, discerning good from evil, real from fake. God is not here to disappear our obstacles. He’s here to give us the Truth so that we may follow Him. When God is our starting point, the Truth never changes lighting our path forever.

Today’s Question

Who or what is your starting point if not God?

Enjoy the reading

1 Samuel 3

1 Meanwhile, the boy Samuel served the LORD by assisting Eli. Now in those days messages from the LORD were very rare, and visions were quite uncommon. 2 One night Eli, who was almost blind by now, had gone to bed. 3 The lamp of God had not yet gone out, and Samuel was sleeping in the Tabernacle near the Ark of God. 4 Suddenly the LORD called out, “Samuel!” “Yes?” Samuel replied. “What is it?” 5 He got up and ran to Eli. “Here I am. Did you call me?” “I didn’t call you,” Eli replied. “Go back to bed.” So he did. 6 Then the LORD called out again, “Samuel!” Again Samuel got up and went to Eli. “Here I am. Did you call me?” “I didn’t call you, my son,” Eli said. “Go back to bed.” 7 Samuel did not yet know the LORD because he had never had a message from the LORD before. 8 So the LORD called a third time, and once more Samuel got up and went to Eli. “Here I am. Did you call me?” Then Eli realized it was the LORD who was calling the boy. 9 So he said to Samuel, “Go and lie down again, and if someone calls again, say, ‘Speak, LORD, your servant is listening.’” So Samuel went back to bed. 10 And the LORD came and called as before, “Samuel! Samuel!” And Samuel replied, “Speak, your servant is listening.” 11 Then the LORD said to Samuel, “I am about to do a shocking thing in Israel. 12 I am going to carry out all my threats against Eli and his family, from beginning to end. 13 I have warned him that judgment is coming upon his family forever, because his sons are blaspheming God and he hasn’t disciplined them. 14 So I have vowed that the sins of Eli and his sons will never be forgiven by sacrifices or offerings.” 15 Samuel stayed in bed until morning, then got up and opened the doors of the Tabernacle as usual. He was afraid to tell Eli what the LORD had said to him. 16 But Eli called out to him, “Samuel, my son.” “Here I am,” Samuel replied. 17 “What did the LORD say to you? Tell me everything. And may God strike you and even kill you if you hide anything from me!” 18 So Samuel told Eli everything; he didn’t hold anything back. “It is the LORD ’s will,” Eli replied. “Let him do what he thinks best.” 19 As Samuel grew up, the LORD was with him, and everything Samuel said proved to be reliable. 20 And all Israel, from Dan in the north to Beersheba in the south, knew that Samuel was confirmed as a prophet of the LORD . 21 The LORD continued to appear at Shiloh and gave messages to Samuel there at the Tabernacle.

Zoom Out

Worker walking in the factory

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“When facing challenging situations, zoom out to see how God is working in your life.”

TB

Microscope

It’s easy to get tunnel vision when you’re facing mounting problems that don’t seem to let up. In stressful situations, we tend to focus on all that is going on, forgetting about all that is going right. When you’re facing trials, call on God and zoom out. Activate your faith and let Him show you the bigger picture.

Fullscreen

Take a fullscreen view to see things as they truly are. Yes, problems are challenging and can bring on feelings of uncertainty, but remember who is in control. There are so many ways that God helps us every day. Zoom out to see where He’s brought you from and remember He’s taking you to a far better place.

Today’s Question

How are you looking at your current situation, and are you letting God guide you through it?

Enjoy the reading

Judges 11

1 Now Jephthah of Gilead was a great warrior. He was the son of Gilead, but his mother was a prostitute. 2 Gilead’s wife also had several sons, and when these half brothers grew up, they chased Jephthah off the land. “You will not get any of our father’s inheritance,” they said, “for you are the son of a prostitute.” 3 So Jephthah fled from his brothers and lived in the land of Tob. Soon he had a band of worthless rebels following him. 4 At about this time, the Ammonites began their war against Israel. 5 When the Ammonites attacked, the elders of Gilead sent for Jephthah in the land of Tob. 6 The elders said, “Come and be our commander! Help us fight the Ammonites!” 7 But Jephthah said to them, “Aren’t you the ones who hated me and drove me from my father’s house? Why do you come to me now when you’re in trouble?” 8 “Because we need you,” the elders replied. “If you lead us in battle against the Ammonites, we will make you ruler over all the people of Gilead.” 9 Jephthah said to the elders, “Let me get this straight. If I come with you and if the LORD gives me victory over the Ammonites, will you really make me ruler over all the people?” 10 “The LORD is our witness,” the elders replied. “We promise to do whatever you say.” 11 So Jephthah went with the elders of Gilead, and the people made him their ruler and commander of the army. At Mizpah, in the presence of the LORD, Jephthah repeated what he had said to the elders. 12 Then Jephthah sent messengers to the king of Ammon, asking, “Why have you come out to fight against my land?” 13 The king of Ammon answered Jephthah’s messengers, “When the Israelites came out of Egypt, they stole my land from the Arnon River to the Jabbok River and all the way to the Jordan. Now then, give back the land peaceably.” 14 Jephthah sent this message back to the Ammonite king: 15 “This is what Jephthah says: Israel did not steal any land from Moab or Ammon. 16 When the people of Israel arrived at Kadesh on their journey from Egypt after crossing the Red Sea, 17 they sent messengers to the king of Edom asking for permission to pass through his land. But their request was denied. Then they asked the king of Moab for similar permission, but he wouldn’t let them pass through either. So the people of Israel stayed in Kadesh. 18 “Finally, they went around Edom and Moab through the wilderness. They traveled along Moab’s eastern border and camped on the other side of the Arnon River. But they never once crossed the Arnon River into Moab, for the Arnon was the border of Moab. 19 “Then Israel sent messengers to King Sihon of the Amorites, who ruled from Heshbon, asking for permission to cross through his land to get to their destination. 20 But King Sihon didn’t trust Israel to pass through his land. Instead, he mobilized his army at Jahaz and attacked them. 21 But the LORD, the God of Israel, gave his people victory over King Sihon. So Israel took control of all the land of the Amorites, who lived in that region, 22 from the Arnon River to the Jabbok River, and from the eastern wilderness to the Jordan. 23 “So you see, it was the LORD, the God of Israel, who took away the land from the Amorites and gave it to Israel. Why, then, should we give it back to you? 24 You keep whatever your god Chemosh gives you, and we will keep whatever the LORD our God gives us. 25 Are you any better than Balak son of Zippor, king of Moab? Did he try to make a case against Israel for disputed land? Did he go to war against them? 26 “Israel has been living here for 300 years, inhabiting Heshbon and its surrounding settlements, all the way to Aroer and its settlements, and in all the towns along the Arnon River. Why have you made no effort to recover it before now? 27 Therefore, I have not sinned against you. Rather, you have wronged me by attacking me. Let the LORD, who is judge, decide today which of us is right—Israel or Ammon.” 28 But the king of Ammon paid no attention to Jephthah’s message. 29 At that time the Spirit of the LORD came upon Jephthah, and he went throughout the land of Gilead and Manasseh, including Mizpah in Gilead, and from there he led an army against the Ammonites. 30 And Jephthah made a vow to the LORD . He said, “If you give me victory over the Ammonites, 31 I will give to the LORD whatever comes out of my house to meet me when I return in triumph. I will sacrifice it as a burnt offering.” 32 So Jephthah led his army against the Ammonites, and the LORD gave him victory. 33 He crushed the Ammonites, devastating about twenty towns from Aroer to an area near Minnith and as far away as Abel-keramim. In this way Israel defeated the Ammonites. 34 When Jephthah returned home to Mizpah, his daughter came out to meet him, playing on a tambourine and dancing for joy. She was his one and only child; he had no other sons or daughters. 35 When he saw her, he tore his clothes in anguish. “Oh, my daughter!” he cried out. “You have completely destroyed me! You’ve brought disaster on me! For I have made a vow to the LORD, and I cannot take it back.” 36 And she said, “Father, if you have made a vow to the LORD, you must do to me what you have vowed, for the LORD has given you a great victory over your enemies, the Ammonites. 37 But first let me do this one thing: Let me go up and roam in the hills and weep with my friends for two months, because I will die a virgin.” 38 “You may go,” Jephthah said. And he sent her away for two months. She and her friends went into the hills and wept because she would never have children. 39 When she returned home, her father kept the vow he had made, and she died a virgin. So it has become a custom in Israel 40 for young Israelite women to go away for four days each year to lament the fate of Jephthah’s daughter.

Triage

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“When you’re tired of spiritually bleeding out, ask God to triage your wounds.”

TB

Battle Fatigue

If you’ve walked with God for some time, you know there are times where you’re burned out. When you’ve been battling it out spiritually, getting tired and weary are par for the course. It’s in those moments that we must make a choice, ask God for help or wander in the wilderness. And, at times, we will choose the wilderness. Friends, don’t let your wounds overtake you, ask God for help.

Bandaged

When you’re working for God, expect the opposition to try you. But you cannot win against him, but God can. We go to God daily, not just to check a box or to gain favor. No, we go to Him because it is He who renews our spirit. He bandages us up, reviving us to total health. God is able in all things, and the war is already won. So remain in Him, and He will care for you.

Today’s Question

Are you tired of going it alone in the wilderness?

Enjoy the reading

Joshua 21

1 Then the leaders of the tribe of Levi came to consult with Eleazar the priest, Joshua son of Nun, and the leaders of the other tribes of Israel. 2 They came to them at Shiloh in the land of Canaan and said, “The LORD commanded Moses to give us towns to live in and pasturelands for our livestock.” 3 So by the command of the LORD the people of Israel gave the Levites the following towns and pasturelands out of their own grants of land. 4 The descendants of Aaron, who were members of the Kohathite clan within the tribe of Levi, were allotted thirteen towns that were originally assigned to the tribes of Judah, Simeon, and Benjamin. 5 The other families of the Kohathite clan were allotted ten towns from the tribes of Ephraim, Dan, and the half-tribe of Manasseh. 6 The clan of Gershon was allotted thirteen towns from the tribes of Issachar, Asher, Naphtali, and the half-tribe of Manasseh in Bashan. 7 The clan of Merari was allotted twelve towns from the tribes of Reuben, Gad, and Zebulun. 8 So the Israelites obeyed the LORD’s command to Moses and assigned these towns and pasturelands to the Levites by casting sacred lots. 9 The Israelites gave the following towns from the tribes of Judah and Simeon 10 to the descendants of Aaron, who were members of the Kohathite clan within the tribe of Levi, since the sacred lot fell to them first: 11 Kiriath-arba (that is, Hebron), in the hill country of Judah, along with its surrounding pasturelands. (Arba was an ancestor of Anak.) 12 But the open fields beyond the town and the surrounding villages were given to Caleb son of Jephunneh as his possession. 13 The following towns with their pasturelands were given to the descendants of Aaron the priest: Hebron (a city of refuge for those who accidentally killed someone), Libnah, 14 Jattir, Eshtemoa, 15 Holon, Debir, 16 Ain, Juttah, and Beth-shemesh—nine towns from these two tribes. 17 From the tribe of Benjamin the priests were given the following towns with their pasturelands: Gibeon, Geba, 18 Anathoth, and Almon—four towns. 19 So in all, thirteen towns with their pasturelands were given to the priests, the descendants of Aaron. 20 The rest of the Kohathite clan from the tribe of Levi was allotted the following towns and pasturelands from the tribe of Ephraim: 21 Shechem in the hill country of Ephraim (a city of refuge for those who accidentally killed someone), Gezer, 22 Kibzaim, and Beth-horon—four towns. 23 The following towns and pasturelands were allotted to the priests from the tribe of Dan: Eltekeh, Gibbethon, 24 Aijalon, and Gath-rimmon—four towns. 25 The half-tribe of Manasseh allotted the following towns with their pasturelands to the priests: Taanach and Gath-rimmon—two towns. 26 So in all, ten towns with their pasturelands were given to the rest of the Kohathite clan. 27 The descendants of Gershon, another clan within the tribe of Levi, received the following towns with their pasturelands from the half-tribe of Manasseh: Golan in Bashan (a city of refuge for those who accidentally killed someone) and Be-eshterah—two towns. 28 From the tribe of Issachar they received the following towns with their pasturelands: Kishion, Daberath, 29 Jarmuth, and En-gannim—four towns. 30 From the tribe of Asher they received the following towns with their pasturelands: Mishal, Abdon, 31 Helkath, and Rehob—four towns. 32 From the tribe of Naphtali they received the following towns with their pasturelands: Kedesh in Galilee (a city of refuge for those who accidentally killed someone), Hammoth-dor, and Kartan—three towns. 33 So in all, thirteen towns with their pasturelands were allotted to the clan of Gershon. 34 The rest of the Levites—the Merari clan—were given the following towns with their pasturelands from the tribe of Zebulun: Jokneam, Kartah, 35 Dimnah, and Nahalal—four towns. 36 From the tribe of Reuben they received the following towns with their pasturelands: Bezer, Jahaz, 37 Kedemoth, and Mephaath—four towns. 38 From the tribe of Gad they received the following towns with their pasturelands: Ramoth in Gilead (a city of refuge for those who accidentally killed someone), Mahanaim, 39 Heshbon, and Jazer—four towns. 40 So in all, twelve towns were allotted to the clan of Merari. 41 The total number of towns and pasturelands within Israelite territory given to the Levites came to forty-eight. 42 Every one of these towns had pasturelands surrounding it. 43 So the LORD gave to Israel all the land he had sworn to give their ancestors, and they took possession of it and settled there. 44 And the LORD gave them rest on every side, just as he had solemnly promised their ancestors. None of their enemies could stand against them, for the LORD helped them conquer all their enemies. 45 Not a single one of all the good promises the LORD had given to the family of Israel was left unfulfilled; everything he had spoken came true.

Defer

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“Center your life and deeds around God so that He may direct your steps.”

TB

Control

Consider it the greatest honor if God allows you to go through periods where you lack control. This is a gift in the fact that you’ve received exposure to the Truth; we do not control anything. Control is an illusion that the world tells you so that you believe in your own might. Friends, do well to recognize that your most remarkable achievements pale in comparison to the Lord, so defer to Him.

Guide

So do not dismay that control is out of your hands, but rather rejoice that God is the one who guides our steps and our path. Because He is just and righteous, He will give us our daily bread so that we have what we need to run our race. You never have to question whether God will see you through because He loves you. So align your steps to His plan and see miraculous His hand at work.

Today’s Question

Are you still under the illusion that you are more capable than God?

Enjoy the reading

Joshua 19

1 The second allotment of land went to the clans of the tribe of Simeon. Their homeland was surrounded by Judah’s territory. 2 Simeon’s homeland included Beersheba, Sheba, Moladah, 3 Hazar-shual, Balah, Ezem, 4 Eltolad, Bethul, Hormah, 5 Ziklag, Beth-marcaboth, Hazar-susah, 6 Beth-lebaoth, and Sharuhen—thirteen towns with their surrounding villages. 7 It also included Ain, Rimmon, Ether, and Ashan—four towns with their villages, 8 including all the surrounding villages as far south as Baalath-beer (also known as Ramah of the Negev). This was the homeland allocated to the clans of the tribe of Simeon. 9 Their allocation of land came from part of what had been given to Judah because Judah’s territory was too large for them. So the tribe of Simeon received an allocation within the territory of Judah. 10 The third allotment of land went to the clans of the tribe of Zebulun. The boundary of Zebulun’s homeland started at Sarid. 11 From there it went west, going past Maralah, touching Dabbesheth, and proceeding to the brook east of Jokneam. 12 In the other direction, the boundary went east from Sarid to the border of Kisloth-tabor, and from there to Daberath and up to Japhia. 13 Then it continued east to Gath-hepher, Eth-kazin, and Rimmon and turned toward Neah. 14 The northern boundary of Zebulun passed Hannathon and ended at the valley of Iphtah-el. 15 The towns in these areas included Kattath, Nahalal, Shimron, Idalah, and Bethlehem—twelve towns with their surrounding villages. 16 The homeland allocated to the clans of the tribe of Zebulun included these towns and their surrounding villages. 17 The fourth allotment of land went to the clans of the tribe of Issachar. 18 Its boundaries included the following towns: Jezreel, Kesulloth, Shunem, 19 Hapharaim, Shion, Anaharath, 20 Rabbith, Kishion, Ebez, 21 Remeth, En-gannim, En-haddah, and Beth-pazzez. 22 The boundary also touched Tabor, Shahazumah, and Beth-shemesh, ending at the Jordan River—sixteen towns with their surrounding villages. 23 The homeland allocated to the clans of the tribe of Issachar included these towns and their surrounding villages. 24 The fifth allotment of land went to the clans of the tribe of Asher. 25 Its boundaries included these towns: Helkath, Hali, Beten, Acshaph, 26 Allammelech, Amad, and Mishal. The boundary on the west touched Carmel and Shihor-libnath, 27 then it turned east toward Beth-dagon, and ran as far as Zebulun in the valley of Iphtah-el, going north to Beth-emek and Neiel. It then continued north to Cabul, 28 Abdon, Rehob, Hammon, Kanah, and as far as Greater Sidon. 29 Then the boundary turned toward Ramah and the fortress of Tyre, where it turned toward Hosah and came to the Mediterranean Sea. The territory also included Mehebel, Aczib, 30 Ummah, Aphek, and Rehob—twenty-two towns with their surrounding villages. 31 The homeland allocated to the clans of the tribe of Asher included these towns and their surrounding villages. 32 The sixth allotment of land went to the clans of the tribe of Naphtali. 33 Its boundary ran from Heleph, from the oak at Zaanannim, and extended across to Adami-nekeb, Jabneel, and as far as Lakkum, ending at the Jordan River. 34 The western boundary ran past Aznoth-tabor, then to Hukkok, and touched the border of Zebulun in the south, the border of Asher on the west, and the Jordan River on the east. 35 The fortified towns included in this territory were Ziddim, Zer, Hammath, Rakkath, Kinnereth, 36 Adamah, Ramah, Hazor, 37 Kedesh, Edrei, En-hazor, 38 Yiron, Migdal-el, Horem, Beth-anath, and Beth-shemesh—nineteen towns with their surrounding villages. 39 The homeland allocated to the clans of the tribe of Naphtali included these towns and their surrounding villages. 40 The seventh allotment of land went to the clans of the tribe of Dan. 41 The land allocated as their homeland included the following towns: Zorah, Eshtaol, Ir-shemesh, 42 Shaalabbin, Aijalon, Ithlah, 43 Elon, Timnah, Ekron, 44 Eltekeh, Gibbethon, Baalath, 45 Jehud, Bene-berak, Gath-rimmon, 46 Me-jarkon, Rakkon, and the territory across from Joppa. 47 But the tribe of Dan had trouble taking possession of their land, so they attacked the town of Laish. They captured it, slaughtered its people, and settled there. They renamed the town Dan after their ancestor. 48 The homeland allocated to the clans of the tribe of Dan included these towns and their surrounding villages. 49 After all the land was divided among the tribes, the Israelites gave a piece of land to Joshua as his allocation. 50 For the LORD had said he could have any town he wanted. He chose Timnath-serah in the hill country of Ephraim. He rebuilt the town and lived there. 51 These are the territories that Eleazar the priest, Joshua son of Nun, and the tribal leaders allocated as grants of land to the tribes of Israel by casting sacred lots in the presence of the LORD at the entrance of the Tabernacle at Shiloh. So the division of the land was completed.

Entrapment

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“Ask God for help in what ails you so that you do not become entrapped in the darkness.”

TB

Brokenness

When we stop going to God for healing, the enemy will trick us into holding on to the fractured pieces as if we can heal ourselves. Friends, there is a very fine line between hurt and pride. Often when we’ve been hurt, our pride will try to make up the difference, shutting out the gentle voice of Christ who desires to comfort us. Like a raccoon stuck in a trap, we are ripe for slaughter if we don’t put down the shiny object of pride.

Restoration

At some point, when you realize there is nowhere else to run, give God a shout. Notice how the characters of the Bible who are at their wit’s end call out to God for help. We have to chuck our pride so that we don’t become trapped in the snare of the evil one. God will always answer no matter how far out you’ve gone. There is no place out of His reach, but you have to ask. So, let your guard down so that He may heal your ailments.

Today’s Question

Are you ready to be healed?

Enjoy the reading

Joshua 8

1 Then the LORD said to Joshua, “Do not be afraid or discouraged. Take all your fighting men and attack Ai, for I have given you the king of Ai, his people, his town, and his land. 2 You will destroy them as you destroyed Jericho and its king. But this time you may keep the plunder and the livestock for yourselves. Set an ambush behind the town.” 3 So Joshua and all the fighting men set out to attack Ai. Joshua chose 30,000 of his best warriors and sent them out at night 4 with these orders: “Hide in ambush close behind the town and be ready for action. 5 When our main army attacks, the men of Ai will come out to fight as they did before, and we will run away from them. 6 We will let them chase us until we have drawn them away from the town. For they will say, ‘The Israelites are running away from us as they did before.’ Then, while we are running from them, 7 you will jump up from your ambush and take possession of the town, for the LORD your God will give it to you. 8 Set the town on fire, as the LORD has commanded. You have your orders.” 9 So they left and went to the place of ambush between Bethel and the west side of Ai. But Joshua remained among the people in the camp that night. 10 Early the next morning Joshua roused his men and started toward Ai, accompanied by the elders of Israel. 11 All the fighting men who were with Joshua marched in front of the town and camped on the north side of Ai, with a valley between them and the town. 12 That night Joshua sent about 5,000 men to lie in ambush between Bethel and Ai, on the west side of the town. 13 So they stationed the main army north of the town and the ambush west of the town. Joshua himself spent that night in the valley. 14 When the king of Ai saw the Israelites across the valley, he and all his army hurried out early in the morning and attacked the Israelites at a place overlooking the Jordan Valley. But he didn’t realize there was an ambush behind the town. 15 Joshua and the Israelite army fled toward the wilderness as though they were badly beaten. 16 Then all the men in the town were called out to chase after them. In this way, they were lured away from the town. 17 There was not a man left in Ai or Bethel who did not chase after the Israelites, and the town was left wide open. 18 Then the LORD said to Joshua, “Point the spear in your hand toward Ai, for I will hand the town over to you.” Joshua did as he was commanded. 19 As soon as Joshua gave this signal, all the men in ambush jumped up from their position and poured into the town. They quickly captured it and set it on fire. 20 When the men of Ai looked behind them, smoke from the town was filling the sky, and they had nowhere to go. For the Israelites who had fled in the direction of the wilderness now turned on their pursuers. 21 When Joshua and all the other Israelites saw that the ambush had succeeded and that smoke was rising from the town, they turned and attacked the men of Ai. 22 Meanwhile, the Israelites who were inside the town came out and attacked the enemy from the rear. So the men of Ai were caught in the middle, with Israelite fighters on both sides. Israel attacked them, and not a single person survived or escaped. 23 Only the king of Ai was taken alive and brought to Joshua. 24 When the Israelite army finished chasing and killing all the men of Ai in the open fields, they went back and finished off everyone inside. 25 So the entire population of Ai, including men and women, was wiped out that day—12,000 in all. 26 For Joshua kept holding out his spear until everyone who had lived in Ai was completely destroyed. 27 Only the livestock and the treasures of the town were not destroyed, for the Israelites kept these as plunder for themselves, as the LORD had commanded Joshua. 28 So Joshua burned the town of Ai, and it became a permanent mound of ruins, desolate to this very day. 29 Joshua impaled the king of Ai on a sharpened pole and left him there until evening. At sunset the Israelites took down the body, as Joshua commanded, and threw it in front of the town gate. They piled a great heap of stones over him that can still be seen today. 30 Then Joshua built an altar to the LORD, the God of Israel, on Mount Ebal. 31 He followed the commands that Moses the LORD ’s servant had written in the Book of Instruction: “Make me an altar from stones that are uncut and have not been shaped with iron tools.” Then on the altar they presented burnt offerings and peace offerings to the LORD . 32 And as the Israelites watched, Joshua copied onto the stones of the altar the instructions Moses had given them. 33 Then all the Israelites—foreigners and native-born alike—along with the elders, officers, and judges, were divided into two groups. One group stood in front of Mount Gerizim, the other in front of Mount Ebal. Each group faced the other, and between them stood the Levitical priests carrying the Ark of the LORD ’s Covenant. This was all done according to the commands that Moses, the servant of the LORD, had previously given for blessing the people of Israel. 34 Joshua then read to them all the blessings and curses Moses had written in the Book of Instruction. 35 Every word of every command that Moses had ever given was read to the entire assembly of Israel, including the women and children and the foreigners who lived among them.

Scab

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“Stop picking at your wounds and allow them to heal.”

TB

Aggravate

Healing and restoration never feel like we perceive them to be. There is a lot of discomfort and growth that occurs before we can reach it. When you pick at the scab of your wounds, you prolong the healing process, aggravating your journey all the more.

Rest

If you want to heal, you must rest. Only when you stop scratching, can your wounds heal. God will continually renew us, but it is up to us to stop interfering with the process. So, stop scratching and start trusting that God is working for you, through you.

Today’s Question

Are you ready to stop impeding your healing process?

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Joshua 6

1 Now the gates of Jericho were tightly shut because the people were afraid of the Israelites. No one was allowed to go out or in. 2 But the LORD said to Joshua, “I have given you Jericho, its king, and all its strong warriors. 3 You and your fighting men should march around the town once a day for six days. 4 Seven priests will walk ahead of the Ark, each carrying a ram’s horn. On the seventh day you are to march around the town seven times, with the priests blowing the horns. 5 When you hear the priests give one long blast on the rams’ horns, have all the people shout as loud as they can. Then the walls of the town will collapse, and the people can charge straight into the town.” 6 So Joshua called together the priests and said, “Take up the Ark of the LORD ’s Covenant, and assign seven priests to walk in front of it, each carrying a ram’s horn.” 7 Then he gave orders to the people: “March around the town, and the armed men will lead the way in front of the Ark of the LORD .” 8 After Joshua spoke to the people, the seven priests with the rams’ horns started marching in the presence of the LORD, blowing the horns as they marched. And the Ark of the LORD ’s Covenant followed behind them. 9 Some of the armed men marched in front of the priests with the horns and some behind the Ark, with the priests continually blowing the horns. 10 “Do not shout; do not even talk,” Joshua commanded. “Not a single word from any of you until I tell you to shout. Then shout!” 11 So the Ark of the LORD was carried around the town once that day, and then everyone returned to spend the night in the camp. 12 Joshua got up early the next morning, and the priests again carried the Ark of the LORD . 13 The seven priests with the rams’ horns marched in front of the Ark of the LORD, blowing their horns. Again the armed men marched both in front of the priests with the horns and behind the Ark of the LORD . All this time the priests were blowing their horns. 14 On the second day they again marched around the town once and returned to the camp. They followed this pattern for six days. 15 On the seventh day the Israelites got up at dawn and marched around the town as they had done before. But this time they went around the town seven times. 16 The seventh time around, as the priests sounded the long blast on their horns, Joshua commanded the people, “Shout! For the LORD has given you the town! 17 Jericho and everything in it must be completely destroyed as an offering to the LORD . Only Rahab the prostitute and the others in her house will be spared, for she protected our spies. 18 “Do not take any of the things set apart for destruction, or you yourselves will be completely destroyed, and you will bring trouble on the camp of Israel. 19 Everything made from silver, gold, bronze, or iron is sacred to the LORD and must be brought into his treasury.” 20 When the people heard the sound of the rams’ horns, they shouted as loud as they could. Suddenly, the walls of Jericho collapsed, and the Israelites charged straight into the town and captured it. 21 They completely destroyed everything in it with their swords—men and women, young and old, cattle, sheep, goats, and donkeys. 22 Meanwhile, Joshua said to the two spies, “Keep your promise. Go to the prostitute’s house and bring her out, along with all her family.” 23 The men who had been spies went in and brought out Rahab, her father, mother, brothers, and all the other relatives who were with her. They moved her whole family to a safe place near the camp of Israel. 24 Then the Israelites burned the town and everything in it. Only the things made from silver, gold, bronze, or iron were kept for the treasury of the LORD ’s house. 25 So Joshua spared Rahab the prostitute and her relatives who were with her in the house, because she had hidden the spies Joshua sent to Jericho. And she lives among the Israelites to this day. 26 At that time Joshua invoked this curse: “May the curse of the LORD fall on anyone who tries to rebuild the town of Jericho. At the cost of his firstborn son, he will lay its foundation. At the cost of his youngest son, he will set up its gates.” 27 So the LORD was with Joshua, and his reputation spread throughout the land.

Caged

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“If you let Him, God will set you free. “

TB

Flee

The opposition only has optical illusions, making life’s setbacks look bleak and impossible. His goal is for you to flee from God so that you enact foolish human solutions. Life is challenging, but when you settle down, you realize God gives you the tools to be free.

Resist

Friends, resist the devil, not your tests and trials. When we avoid the lessons God shares with us, we avoid learning the Truth in action, which is God is sovereign and the devil is defeated. When we resist the devil, we learn to trust God in all things.

Today’s Question

Are you feeling trapped because you’re avoiding key spiritual lessons?

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Deuteronomy 17

1 “Never sacrifice sick or defective cattle, sheep, or goats to the LORD your God, for he detests such gifts. 2 “When you begin living in the towns the LORD your God is giving you, a man or woman among you might do evil in the sight of the LORD your God and violate the covenant. 3 For instance, they might serve other gods or worship the sun, the moon, or any of the stars—the forces of heaven—which I have strictly forbidden. 4 When you hear about it, investigate the matter thoroughly. If it is true that this detestable thing has been done in Israel, 5 then the man or woman who has committed such an evil act must be taken to the gates of the town and stoned to death. 6 But never put a person to death on the testimony of only one witness. There must always be two or three witnesses. 7 The witnesses must throw the first stones, and then all the people may join in. In this way, you will purge the evil from among you. 8 “Suppose a case arises in a local court that is too hard for you to decide—for instance, whether someone is guilty of murder or only of manslaughter, or a difficult lawsuit, or a case involving different kinds of assault. Take such legal cases to the place the LORD your God will choose, 9 and present them to the Levitical priests or the judge on duty at that time. They will hear the case and declare the verdict. 10 You must carry out the verdict they announce and the sentence they prescribe at the place the LORD chooses. You must do exactly what they say. 11 After they have interpreted the law and declared their verdict, the sentence they impose must be fully executed; do not modify it in any way. 12 Anyone arrogant enough to reject the verdict of the judge or of the priest who represents the LORD your God must die. In this way you will purge the evil from Israel. 13 Then everyone else will hear about it and be afraid to act so arrogantly. 14 “You are about to enter the land the LORD your God is giving you. When you take it over and settle there, you may think, ‘We should select a king to rule over us like the other nations around us.’ 15 If this happens, be sure to select as king the man the LORD your God chooses. You must appoint a fellow Israelite; he may not be a foreigner. 16 “The king must not build up a large stable of horses for himself or send his people to Egypt to buy horses, for the LORD has told you, ‘You must never return to Egypt.’ 17 The king must not take many wives for himself, because they will turn his heart away from the LORD . And he must not accumulate large amounts of wealth in silver and gold for himself. 18 “When he sits on the throne as king, he must copy for himself this body of instruction on a scroll in the presence of the Levitical priests. 19 He must always keep that copy with him and read it daily as long as he lives. That way he will learn to fear the LORD his God by obeying all the terms of these instructions and decrees. 20 This regular reading will prevent him from becoming proud and acting as if he is above his fellow citizens. It will also prevent him from turning away from these commands in the smallest way. And it will ensure that he and his descendants will reign for many generations in Israel.

Truth in Motion

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“When we learn to lean on God in difficult situations rather than using our flesh-driven alternatives, we begin to see the Truth in motion.”

Placed

Our trials are tests. We can either face them with the support of our Father in Heaven and pass. Or, we can avoid them and keep repeating the same tests. Friends, Christ has won the good fight for us, and we benefit when we place our trust in Him.

Destined

When you know the Truth, you learn not to fear the evil and corruption around you. This is because you know this was how it was supposed to go down in the first place! So pass your tests and rest in the peace that this has already come to pass.

Today’s Question

Are you moving with the Truth in motion, or are you frozen in fear?

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Numbers 36

1 Then the heads of the clans of Gilead—descendants of Makir, son of Manasseh, son of Joseph—came to Moses and the family leaders of Israel with a petition. 2 They said, “Sir, the LORD instructed you to divide the land by sacred lot among the people of Israel. You were told by the LORD to give the grant of land owned by our brother Zelophehad to his daughters. 3 But if they marry men from another tribe, their grants of land will go with them to the tribe into which they marry. In this way, the total area of our tribal land will be reduced. 4 Then when the Year of Jubilee comes, their portion of land will be added to that of the new tribe, causing it to be lost forever to our ancestral tribe.” 5 So Moses gave the Israelites this command from the LORD : “The claim of the men of the tribe of Joseph is legitimate. 6 This is what the LORD commands concerning the daughters of Zelophehad: Let them marry anyone they like, as long as it is within their own ancestral tribe. 7 None of the territorial land may pass from tribe to tribe, for all the land given to each tribe must remain within the tribe to which it was first allotted. 8 The daughters throughout the tribes of Israel who are in line to inherit property must marry within their tribe, so that all the Israelites will keep their ancestral property. 9 No grant of land may pass from one tribe to another; each tribe of Israel must keep its allotted portion of land.” 10 The daughters of Zelophehad did as the LORD commanded Moses. 11 Mahlah, Tirzah, Hoglah, Milcah, and Noah all married cousins on their father’s side. 12 They married into the clans of Manasseh son of Joseph. Thus, their inheritance of land remained within their ancestral tribe. 13 These are the commands and regulations that the LORD gave to the people of Israel through Moses while they were camped on the plains of Moab beside the Jordan River, across from Jericho.

Mirage

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“Pay attention to the obstacles in your life as the opposition likes to throw in optical illusions to encourage you to stray.”

TB

Path

God sets out a path for us. It’s not a confusing, convoluted journey; in fact, it’s pretty straightforward. Pick up your cross, accept the gift of salvation, and follow Him. What makes the path narrow is our flesh-driven ways and the opposition which seeks to devour us at every turn. Even when (especially) things are good, and you are at peace, he will stir up a fake scenario within you to cause strife. While those scenarios may feel real, they are merely figments of the imagination designed to get you off of your walk with Christ. So what does that look like?

Illusion

The devil cannot force us to do anything. He can, however, tee up the situation, but we must swing at it. This happens when we crave things we think we need, so we obtain them illegitimately. You may think your spouse is angry with you, so you become defensive and argumentative. You could feel intense fear about a situation at home, or work, etc., that is only alive in your mind. The takeaway is that we must know the word of God and how it reinforces our minds so that when the enemy attacks, we don’t buy into the fake scenes he’s painting.

Today’s Question

Are you distracted and discouraged by a mirage from the enemy?

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Genesis 6

1 Then the people began to multiply on the earth, and daughters were born to them. 2 The sons of God saw the beautiful women and took any they wanted as their wives. 3 Then the LORD said, “My Spirit will not put up with humans for such a long time, for they are only mortal flesh. In the future, their normal lifespan will be no more than 120 years.” 4 In those days, and for some time after, giant Nephilites lived on the earth, for whenever the sons of God had intercourse with women, they gave birth to children who became the heroes and famous warriors of ancient times. 5 The LORD observed the extent of human wickedness on the earth, and he saw that everything they thought or imagined was consistently and totally evil. 6 So the LORD was sorry he had ever made them and put them on the earth. It broke his heart. 7 And the LORD said, “I will wipe this human race I have created from the face of the earth. Yes, and I will destroy every living thing—all the people, the large animals, the small animals that scurry along the ground, and even the birds of the sky. I am sorry I ever made them.” 8 But Noah found favor with the LORD . 9 This is the account of Noah and his family. Noah was a righteous man, the only blameless person living on earth at the time, and he walked in close fellowship with God. 10 Noah was the father of three sons: Shem, Ham, and Japheth. 11 Now God saw that the earth had become corrupt and was filled with violence. 12 God observed all this corruption in the world, for everyone on earth was corrupt. 13 So God said to Noah, “I have decided to destroy all living creatures, for they have filled the earth with violence. Yes, I will wipe them all out along with the earth! 14 “Build a large boat from cypress wood and waterproof it with tar, inside and out. Then construct decks and stalls throughout its interior. 15 Make the boat 450 feet long, 75 feet wide, and 45 feet high. 16 Leave an 18-inch opening below the roof all the way around the boat. Put the door on the side, and build three decks inside the boat—lower, middle, and upper. 17 “Look! I am about to cover the earth with a flood that will destroy every living thing that breathes. Everything on earth will die. 18 But I will confirm my covenant with you. So enter the boat—you and your wife and your sons and their wives. 19 Bring a pair of every kind of animal—a male and a female—into the boat with you to keep them alive during the flood. 20 Pairs of every kind of bird, and every kind of animal, and every kind of small animal that scurries along the ground, will come to you to be kept alive. 21 And be sure to take on board enough food for your family and for all the animals.” 22 So Noah did everything exactly as God had commanded him.

All Shapes

Hi Peeps,

Toda’s Quote

“Pride comes in all shapes and sizes.”

TB

Subtle

Unbridled pride comes in many forms, and if you’re not consciously aware of your choices and how you arrive at them, your pride will take you for quite the ride. This ride is subtle and slow-brewing, but over time, you’ll come to know its effects. But know this, unchecked pride causes disobedience. So what does pride look like?

Shades

When we think of pride, we often associate it with being boastful or arrogant. But, pride has a flipside. Refusing to ask for help, that’s pride. Fear of failure is also pride. Consider this, the only thing we truly lose in failure is our pride. And, if that’s all we lose, what joy! So if God calls you to do some, don’t let your fear-based pride hinder you.

Today’s Question

Are the shapes of pride causing you to fear growth in Christ?

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Malachi 2

1 “Listen, you priests—this command is for you! 2 Listen to me and make up your minds to honor my name,” says the LORD of Heaven’s Armies, “or I will bring a terrible curse against you. I will curse even the blessings you receive. Indeed, I have already cursed them, because you have not taken my warning to heart. 3 I will punish your descendants and splatter your faces with the manure from your festival sacrifices, and I will throw you on the manure pile. 4 Then at last you will know it was I who sent you this warning so that my covenant with the Levites can continue,” says the LORD of Heaven’s Armies. 5 “The purpose of my covenant with the Levites was to bring life and peace, and that is what I gave them. This required reverence from them, and they greatly revered me and stood in awe of my name. 6 They passed on to the people the truth of the instructions they received from me. They did not lie or cheat; they walked with me, living good and righteous lives, and they turned many from lives of sin. 7 “The words of a priest’s lips should preserve knowledge of God, and people should go to him for instruction, for the priest is the messenger of the LORD of Heaven’s Armies. 8 But you priests have left God’s paths. Your instructions have caused many to stumble into sin. You have corrupted the covenant I made with the Levites,” says the LORD of Heaven’s Armies. 9 “So I have made you despised and humiliated in the eyes of all the people. For you have not obeyed me but have shown favoritism in the way you carry out my instructions.” 10 Are we not all children of the same Father? Are we not all created by the same God? Then why do we betray each other, violating the covenant of our ancestors? 11 Judah has been unfaithful, and a detestable thing has been done in Israel and in Jerusalem. The men of Judah have defiled the LORD ’s beloved sanctuary by marrying women who worship idols. 12 May the LORD cut off from the nation of Israel every last man who has done this and yet brings an offering to the LORD of Heaven’s Armies. 13 Here is another thing you do. You cover the LORD ’s altar with tears, weeping and groaning because he pays no attention to your offerings and doesn’t accept them with pleasure. 14 You cry out, “Why doesn’t the LORD accept my worship?” I’ll tell you why! Because the LORD witnessed the vows you and your wife made when you were young. But you have been unfaithful to her, though she remained your faithful partner, the wife of your marriage vows. 15 Didn’t the LORD make you one with your wife? In body and spirit you are his. And what does he want? Godly children from your union. So guard your heart; remain loyal to the wife of your youth. 16 “For I hate divorce!” says the LORD, the God of Israel. “To divorce your wife is to overwhelm her with cruelty, ” says the LORD of Heaven’s Armies. “So guard your heart; do not be unfaithful to your wife.” 17 You have wearied the LORD with your words. “How have we wearied him?” you ask. You have wearied him by saying that all who do evil are good in the LORD ’s sight, and he is pleased with them. You have wearied him by asking, “Where is the God of justice?”