Alone

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“Take comfort in the truth that God is always with you.”

TB

Here

It’s easy to get distracted and confused, thinking this world is all there is. The opposition’s job is to get you to deny the Truth and he’ll do that by any means that further his evil agenda. While he may nag you, he cannot override your ability to build a relationship with God. He will always spend time with you.

Now

God is with you now and loves you more than you’ll ever know. In order to fully understand that, you must do your due diligence. Read the Word, get to know who He is, what He’s done, and His promise to His children. When you know God on a 1:1 level, you can rest in the comfort that He walks with you always.

Today’s Question

Do you know you’re not alone?

Enjoy the reading

Exodus 13

1 Then the LORD said to Moses, 2 “Dedicate to me every firstborn among the Israelites. The first offspring to be born, of both humans and animals, belongs to me.” 3 So Moses said to the people, “This is a day to remember forever—the day you left Egypt, the place of your slavery. Today the LORD has brought you out by the power of his mighty hand. (Remember, eat no food containing yeast.) 4 On this day in early spring, in the month of Abib, you have been set free. 5 You must celebrate this event in this month each year after the LORD brings you into the land of the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Hivites, and Jebusites. (He swore to your ancestors that he would give you this land—a land flowing with milk and honey.) 6 For seven days the bread you eat must be made without yeast. Then on the seventh day, celebrate a feast to the LORD . 7 Eat bread without yeast during those seven days. In fact, there must be no yeast bread or any yeast at all found within the borders of your land during this time. 8 “On the seventh day you must explain to your children, ‘I am celebrating what the LORD did for me when I left Egypt.’ 9 This annual festival will be a visible sign to you, like a mark branded on your hand or your forehead. Let it remind you always to recite this teaching of the LORD : ‘With a strong hand, the LORD rescued you from Egypt.’ 10 So observe the decree of this festival at the appointed time each year. 11 “This is what you must do when the LORD fulfills the promise he swore to you and to your ancestors. When he gives you the land where the Canaanites now live, 12 you must present all firstborn sons and firstborn male animals to the LORD, for they belong to him. 13 A firstborn donkey may be bought back from the LORD by presenting a lamb or young goat in its place. But if you do not buy it back, you must break its neck. However, you must buy back every firstborn son. 14 “And in the future, your children will ask you, ‘What does all this mean?’ Then you will tell them, ‘With the power of his mighty hand, the LORD brought us out of Egypt, the place of our slavery. 15 Pharaoh stubbornly refused to let us go, so the LORD killed all the firstborn males throughout the land of Egypt, both people and animals. That is why I now sacrifice all the firstborn males to the LORD —except that the firstborn sons are always bought back.’ 16 This ceremony will be like a mark branded on your hand or your forehead. It is a reminder that the power of the LORD ’s mighty hand brought us out of Egypt.” 17 When Pharaoh finally let the people go, God did not lead them along the main road that runs through Philistine territory, even though that was the shortest route to the Promised Land. God said, “If the people are faced with a battle, they might change their minds and return to Egypt.” 18 So God led them in a roundabout way through the wilderness toward the Red Sea. Thus the Israelites left Egypt like an army ready for battle. 19 Moses took the bones of Joseph with him, for Joseph had made the sons of Israel swear to do this. He said, “God will certainly come to help you. When he does, you must take my bones with you from this place.” 20 The Israelites left Succoth and camped at Etham on the edge of the wilderness. 21 The LORD went ahead of them. He guided them during the day with a pillar of cloud, and he provided light at night with a pillar of fire. This allowed them to travel by day or by night. 22 And the LORD did not remove the pillar of cloud or pillar of fire from its place in front of the people

Ask Your Father

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“When dealing with life’s ebbs and flows, always ask your Father in Heaven.”

TB

Uh Oh

We get ourselves into all kinds of trouble when we fail to ask God, our Father in Heaven for advice. Take Adam and Eve, for example. When they were tempted, all they had to do was ask God about the apple and He would’ve set them straight. Instead, they followed their flesh and, the rest is history. We’re no different than Adam and Eve.

Resource

Following our flesh always ends up with us repenting and begging God for forgiveness. Of course, as we mature spiritually, the hope is that we begin to call Him up more than we blindly give in to our fleshly motives. Friends, God has wonderful plans for all of us and He’ll never steer you wrong. So, resolve to call Him up more often than not.

Today’s Question

Did you ask your Father in Heaven or are you continually calling Him for a bailout?

Enjoy the reading

Genesis 39

1 Then Jacob called together all his sons and said, “Gather around me, and I will tell you what will happen to each of you in the days to come. 2 “Come and listen, you sons of Jacob; listen to Israel, your father. 3 “Reuben, you are my firstborn, my strength, the child of my vigorous youth. You are first in rank and first in power. 4 But you are as unruly as a flood, and you will be first no longer. For you went to bed with my wife; you defiled my marriage couch. 5 “Simeon and Levi are two of a kind; their weapons are instruments of violence. 6 May I never join in their meetings; may I never be a party to their plans. For in their anger they murdered men, and they crippled oxen just for sport. 7 A curse on their anger, for it is fierce; a curse on their wrath, for it is cruel. I will scatter them among the descendants of Jacob; I will disperse them throughout Israel. 8 “Judah, your brothers will praise you. You will grasp your enemies by the neck. All your relatives will bow before you. 9 Judah, my son, is a young lion that has finished eating its prey. Like a lion he crouches and lies down; like a lioness—who dares to rouse him? 10 The scepter will not depart from Judah, nor the ruler’s staff from his descendants, until the coming of the one to whom it belongs, the one whom all nations will honor. 11 He ties his foal to a grapevine, the colt of his donkey to a choice vine. He washes his clothes in wine, his robes in the blood of grapes. 12 His eyes are darker than wine, and his teeth are whiter than milk. 13 “Zebulun will settle by the seashore and will be a harbor for ships; his borders will extend to Sidon. 14 “Issachar is a sturdy donkey, resting between two saddlepacks. 15 When he sees how good the countryside is and how pleasant the land, he will bend his shoulder to the load and submit himself to hard labor. 16 “Dan will govern his people, like any other tribe in Israel. 17 Dan will be a snake beside the road, a poisonous viper along the path that bites the horse’s hooves so its rider is thrown off. 18 I trust in you for salvation, O LORD ! 19 “Gad will be attacked by marauding bands, but he will attack them when they retreat. 20 “Asher will dine on rich foods and produce food fit for kings. 21 “Naphtali is a doe set free that bears beautiful fawns. 22 “Joseph is the foal of a wild donkey, the foal of a wild donkey at a spring— one of the wild donkeys on the ridge. 23 Archers attacked him savagely; they shot at him and harassed him. 24 But his bow remained taut, and his arms were strengthened by the hands of the Mighty One of Jacob, by the Shepherd, the Rock of Israel. 25 May the God of your father help you; may the Almighty bless you with the blessings of the heavens above, and blessings of the watery depths below, and blessings of the breasts and womb. 26 May my fatherly blessings on you surpass the blessings of my ancestors, reaching to the heights of the eternal hills. May these blessings rest on the head of Joseph, who is a prince among his brothers. 27 “Benjamin is a ravenous wolf, devouring his enemies in the morning and dividing his plunder in the evening.” 28 These are the twelve tribes of Israel, and this is what their father said as he told his sons good-bye. He blessed each one with an appropriate message. 29 Then Jacob instructed them, “Soon I will die and join my ancestors. Bury me with my father and grandfather in the cave in the field of Ephron the Hittite. 30 This is the cave in the field of Machpelah, near Mamre in Canaan, that Abraham bought from Ephron the Hittite as a permanent burial site. 31 There Abraham and his wife Sarah are buried. There Isaac and his wife, Rebekah, are buried. And there I buried Leah. 32 It is the plot of land and the cave that my grandfather Abraham bought from the Hittites.” 33 When Jacob had finished this charge to his sons, he drew his feet into the bed, breathed his last, and joined his ancestors in death.

Honest Plea

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“Don’t be shy in taking your needs to the Lord because God respects an honest plea.”

TB

Speak

God delights in hearing from His children and respects when we do so honestly. Friends we need God and He is well aware of who we are, deeds and all.

Listen

Because God is righteous and just, wait and listen for His response to that honest plea. It may not be what you thought, however, it will be exactly what you need.

Today’s Question

Are you talking with God honestly or are you singing sweet nothings?

Enjoy the reading

Genesis 42

1 When Jacob heard that grain was available in Egypt, he said to his sons, “Why are you standing around looking at one another? 2 I have heard there is grain in Egypt. Go down there, and buy enough grain to keep us alive. Otherwise we’ll die.” 3 So Joseph’s ten older brothers went down to Egypt to buy grain. 4 But Jacob wouldn’t let Joseph’s younger brother, Benjamin, go with them, for fear some harm might come to him. 5 So Jacob’s sons arrived in Egypt along with others to buy food, for the famine was in Canaan as well. 6 Since Joseph was governor of all Egypt and in charge of selling grain to all the people, it was to him that his brothers came. When they arrived, they bowed before him with their faces to the ground. 7 Joseph recognized his brothers instantly, but he pretended to be a stranger and spoke harshly to them. “Where are you from?” he demanded. “From the land of Canaan,” they replied. “We have come to buy food.” 8 Although Joseph recognized his brothers, they didn’t recognize him. 9 And he remembered the dreams he’d had about them many years before. He said to them, “You are spies! You have come to see how vulnerable our land has become.” 10 “No, my lord!” they exclaimed. “Your servants have simply come to buy food. 11 We are all brothers—members of the same family. We are honest men, sir! We are not spies!” 12 “Yes, you are!” Joseph insisted. “You have come to see how vulnerable our land has become.” 13 “Sir,” they said, “there are actually twelve of us. We, your servants, are all brothers, sons of a man living in the land of Canaan. Our youngest brother is back there with our father right now, and one of our brothers is no longer with us.” 14 But Joseph insisted, “As I said, you are spies! 15 This is how I will test your story. I swear by the life of Pharaoh that you will never leave Egypt unless your youngest brother comes here! 16 One of you must go and get your brother. I’ll keep the rest of you here in prison. Then we’ll find out whether or not your story is true. By the life of Pharaoh, if it turns out that you don’t have a younger brother, then I’ll know you are spies.” 17 So Joseph put them all in prison for three days. 18 On the third day Joseph said to them, “I am a God-fearing man. If you do as I say, you will live. 19 If you really are honest men, choose one of your brothers to remain in prison. The rest of you may go home with grain for your starving families. 20 But you must bring your youngest brother back to me. This will prove that you are telling the truth, and you will not die.” To this they agreed. 21 Speaking among themselves, they said, “Clearly we are being punished because of what we did to Joseph long ago. We saw his anguish when he pleaded for his life, but we wouldn’t listen. That’s why we’re in this trouble.” 22 “Didn’t I tell you not to sin against the boy?” Reuben asked. “But you wouldn’t listen. And now we have to answer for his blood!” 23 Of course, they didn’t know that Joseph understood them, for he had been speaking to them through an interpreter. 24 Now he turned away from them and began to weep. When he regained his composure, he spoke to them again. Then he chose Simeon from among them and had him tied up right before their eyes. 25 Joseph then ordered his servants to fill the men’s sacks with grain, but he also gave secret instructions to return each brother’s payment at the top of his sack. He also gave them supplies for their journey home. 26 So the brothers loaded their donkeys with the grain and headed for home. 27 But when they stopped for the night and one of them opened his sack to get grain for his donkey, he found his money in the top of his sack. 28 “Look!” he exclaimed to his brothers. “My money has been returned; it’s here in my sack!” Then their hearts sank. Trembling, they said to each other, “What has God done to us?” 29 When the brothers came to their father, Jacob, in the land of Canaan, they told him everything that had happened to them. 30 “The man who is governor of the land spoke very harshly to us,” they told him. “He accused us of being spies scouting the land. 31 But we said, ‘We are honest men, not spies. 32 We are twelve brothers, sons of one father. One brother is no longer with us, and the youngest is at home with our father in the land of Canaan.’ 33 “Then the man who is governor of the land told us, ‘This is how I will find out if you are honest men. Leave one of your brothers here with me, and take grain for your starving families and go on home. 34 But you must bring your youngest brother back to me. Then I will know you are honest men and not spies. Then I will give you back your brother, and you may trade freely in the land.’” 35 As they emptied out their sacks, there in each man’s sack was the bag of money he had paid for the grain! The brothers and their father were terrified when they saw the bags of money. 36 Jacob exclaimed, “You are robbing me of my children! Joseph is gone! Simeon is gone! And now you want to take Benjamin, too. Everything is going against me!” 37 Then Reuben said to his father, “You may kill my two sons if I don’t bring Benjamin back to you. I’ll be responsible for him, and I promise to bring him back.” 38 But Jacob replied, “My son will not go down with you. His brother Joseph is dead, and he is all I have left. If anything should happen to him on your journey, you would send this grieving, white-haired man to his grave. ”

Genesis

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“When you understand that God is the beginning and center of all things, then you can fully understand and walk in your purpose.”

TB

Precedent

You have the option of centering your life around God or centering it around yourself. While God permits either option, trust me that they offer vastly different outcomes. Because God is love, without Him, you can never truly understand what love is, therefore you set a different precedent that is based on shot-sighted human thinking. But friends reconcile yourselves to hear God as He calls you because we all have the opportunity and choice to live in the Truth. When you choose to accept God’s sovereignty over your life, He gives you the gift of understanding.

Purpose

To live according to yourself is to live without understanding Who made you and how you fit into His plan. Sure, according to man, you can be successful, but truly, a human-driven life stunts the reality and miraculousness that God shares with those who pick up their cross and follow Him. In walking with God, you learn who you are according to Who made you. You begin to understand what unconditional love, mercy, and grace actually mean. Most importantly, you find the joy of following God, not for the perks, but because He is.

Today’s Question

What centers you?

Enjoy the reading

Genesis 38

1 About this time, Judah left home and moved to Adullam, where he stayed with a man named Hirah. 2 There he saw a Canaanite woman, the daughter of Shua, and he married her. When he slept with her, 3 she became pregnant and gave birth to a son, and he named the boy Er. 4 Then she became pregnant again and gave birth to another son, and she named him Onan. 5 And when she gave birth to a third son, she named him Shelah. At the time of Shelah’s birth, they were living at Kezib. 6 In the course of time, Judah arranged for his firstborn son, Er, to marry a young woman named Tamar. 7 But Er was a wicked man in the LORD ’s sight, so the LORD took his life. 8 Then Judah said to Er’s brother Onan, “Go and marry Tamar, as our law requires of the brother of a man who has died. You must produce an heir for your brother.” 9 But Onan was not willing to have a child who would not be his own heir. So whenever he had intercourse with his brother’s wife, he spilled the semen on the ground. This prevented her from having a child who would belong to his brother. 10 But the LORD considered it evil for Onan to deny a child to his dead brother. So the LORD took Onan’s life, too. 11 Then Judah said to Tamar, his daughter-in-law, “Go back to your parents’ home and remain a widow until my son Shelah is old enough to marry you.” (But Judah didn’t really intend to do this because he was afraid Shelah would also die, like his two brothers.) So Tamar went back to live in her father’s home. 12 Some years later Judah’s wife died. After the time of mourning was over, Judah and his friend Hirah the Adullamite went up to Timnah to supervise the shearing of his sheep. 13 Someone told Tamar, “Look, your father-in-law is going up to Timnah to shear his sheep.” 14 Tamar was aware that Shelah had grown up, but no arrangements had been made for her to come and marry him. So she changed out of her widow’s clothing and covered herself with a veil to disguise herself. Then she sat beside the road at the entrance to the village of Enaim, which is on the road to Timnah. 15 Judah noticed her and thought she was a prostitute, since she had covered her face. 16 So he stopped and propositioned her. “Let me have sex with you,” he said, not realizing that she was his own daughter-in-law. “How much will you pay to have sex with me?” Tamar asked. 17 “I’ll send you a young goat from my flock,” Judah promised. “But what will you give me to guarantee that you will send the goat?” she asked. 18 “What kind of guarantee do you want?” he replied. She answered, “Leave me your identification seal and its cord and the walking stick you are carrying.” So Judah gave them to her. Then he had intercourse with her, and she became pregnant. 19 Afterward she went back home, took off her veil, and put on her widow’s clothing as usual. 20 Later Judah asked his friend Hirah the Adullamite to take the young goat to the woman and to pick up the things he had given her as his guarantee. But Hirah couldn’t find her. 21 So he asked the men who lived there, “Where can I find the shrine prostitute who was sitting beside the road at the entrance to Enaim?” “We’ve never had a shrine prostitute here,” they replied. 22 So Hirah returned to Judah and told him, “I couldn’t find her anywhere, and the men of the village claim they’ve never had a shrine prostitute there.” 23 “Then let her keep the things I gave her,” Judah said. “I sent the young goat as we agreed, but you couldn’t find her. We’d be the laughingstock of the village if we went back again to look for her.” 24 About three months later, Judah was told, “Tamar, your daughter-in-law, has acted like a prostitute. And now, because of this, she’s pregnant.” “Bring her out, and let her be burned!” Judah demanded. 25 But as they were taking her out to kill her, she sent this message to her father-in-law: “The man who owns these things made me pregnant. Look closely. Whose seal and cord and walking stick are these?” 26 Judah recognized them immediately and said, “She is more righteous than I am, because I didn’t arrange for her to marry my son Shelah.” And Judah never slept with Tamar again. 27 When the time came for Tamar to give birth, it was discovered that she was carrying twins. 28 While she was in labor, one of the babies reached out his hand. The midwife grabbed it and tied a scarlet string around the child’s wrist, announcing, “This one came out first.” 29 But then he pulled back his hand, and out came his brother! “What!” the midwife exclaimed. “How did you break out first?” So he was named Perez. 30 Then the baby with the scarlet string on his wrist was born, and he was named Zerah.

Pacify

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“Don’t let your flesh pacify God’s Will for your life.”

TB

One Body

We all have a responsibility to our brothers, sisters, widows, and children as God commanded us to look out for one another. As the body of Christ, God gives us a mission that is as unique to our one on one relationship with Him. When we fail to do our God-given responsibilities, we are following our own fleshly agendas.

One Agenda

You can tell a lot about a person from how they treat the people around them. If your life is selfishly lived for your own pleasure, and yet you call yourself a child of Christ. It’s time to examine your internal behavior. Friends, we cannot serve two masters. So, if you find that you are the master and commander of your own ship, don’t pacify your deeds. Turn to God.

Today’s Question

Are you part of the body of Christ or part of your own agenda?

Enjoy the reading

Micah 3

1 I said, “Listen, you leaders of Israel! You are supposed to know right from wrong, 2 but you are the very ones who hate good and love evil. You skin my people alive and tear the flesh from their bones. 3 Yes, you eat my people’s flesh, strip off their skin, and break their bones. You chop them up like meat for the cooking pot. 4 Then you beg the LORD for help in times of trouble! Do you really expect him to answer? After all the evil you have done, he won’t even look at you!” 5 This is what the LORD says: “You false prophets are leading my people astray! You promise peace for those who give you food, but you declare war on those who refuse to feed you. 6 Now the night will close around you, cutting off all your visions. Darkness will cover you, putting an end to your predictions. The sun will set for you prophets, and your day will come to an end. 7 Then you seers will be put to shame, and you fortune-tellers will be disgraced. And you will cover your faces because there is no answer from God.” 8 But as for me, I am filled with power— with the Spirit of the LORD . I am filled with justice and strength to boldly declare Israel’s sin and rebellion. 9 Listen to me, you leaders of Israel! You hate justice and twist all that is right. 10 You are building Jerusalem on a foundation of murder and corruption. 11 You rulers make decisions based on bribes; you priests teach God’s laws only for a price; you prophets won’t prophesy unless you are paid. Yet all of you claim to depend on the LORD . “No harm can come to us,” you say, “for the LORD is here among us.” 12 Because of you, Mount Zion will be plowed like an open field; Jerusalem will be reduced to ruins! A thicket will grow on the heights where the Temple now stands.

Allowance

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“Thank God for His allowances!”

TB

Tenure

It’s arrogant to believe that just because you’ve known Christ for a long time that your wages will be any better than the believers who show up in the last hour. Like the workers in the vineyard, Christ’s generosity supersedes our limited understanding. While the end allowance (salvation) is the same for the last and the first, do not discount the glory of walking with God.

Gift

To have walked with God for a long time is a gift in itself, so there is no need to worry or be jealous of new believers. Just like the brother of the prodigal son, if you’ve already known God, then you already have access to His kingdom. That does not change just because someone else got the memo. So instead of letting your pride lead you into foolish arrogance, Thank God for His wages and walk in peace.

Today’s Question

Are you enjoying your wages or are you counting someone else’s?

Enjoy the reading

Jonah 4

1 This change of plans greatly upset Jonah, and he became very angry. 2 So he complained to the LORD about it: “Didn’t I say before I left home that you would do this, LORD ? That is why I ran away to Tarshish! I knew that you are a merciful and compassionate God, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love. You are eager to turn back from destroying people. 3 Just kill me now, LORD ! I’d rather be dead than alive if what I predicted will not happen.” 4 The LORD replied, “Is it right for you to be angry about this?” 5 Then Jonah went out to the east side of the city and made a shelter to sit under as he waited to see what would happen to the city. 6 And the LORD God arranged for a leafy plant to grow there, and soon it spread its broad leaves over Jonah’s head, shading him from the sun. This eased his discomfort, and Jonah was very grateful for the plant. 7 But God also arranged for a worm! The next morning at dawn the worm ate through the stem of the plant so that it withered away. 8 And as the sun grew hot, God arranged for a scorching east wind to blow on Jonah. The sun beat down on his head until he grew faint and wished to die. “Death is certainly better than living like this!” he exclaimed. 9 Then God said to Jonah, “Is it right for you to be angry because the plant died?” “Yes,” Jonah retorted, “even angry enough to die!” 10 Then the LORD said, “You feel sorry about the plant, though you did nothing to put it there. It came quickly and died quickly. 11 But Nineveh has more than 120,000 people living in spiritual darkness, not to mention all the animals. Shouldn’t I feel sorry for such a great city?”

Grace

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“Learn to listen to your brothers and sisters with a loving ear.”

TB

Wisdom

We display Christ’s teachings when we listen to each other with love and grace. More often than not, we respond with legalistic rhetoric, when really, the person needs a kind word. It’s easy to correct a downfallen neighbor, but it takes divine wisdom to show them grace. Notice how God treats you when you fall. It’s not with a harsh or haughty rebuke, but like a father lovingly picking you up after you’ve fallen and scraped a knee. If you aspire to be wise, show grace and love.

Build

When we treat others as God treats us, we exemplify Kingdom traits, encouraging others to draw closer to Him. Friends, it is not our job to be religious, but to rather share the Gift that has been freely given to us. When you realize that Christ-like love is the formula for sharing the Good News, God can then impart wisdom within you to carry out the goal. Graceful wisdom builds Christ-bearing relationships. So when your brother or sister becomes discouraged, remember to lead with grace and love.

Today’s Question

Are you leading with grace?

Enjoy the reading

Hosea 7

1 “I want to heal Israel, but its sins are too great. Samaria is filled with liars. Thieves are on the inside and bandits on the outside! 2 Its people don’t realize that I am watching them. Their sinful deeds are all around them, and I see them all. 3 “The people entertain the king with their wickedness, and the princes laugh at their lies. 4 They are all adulterers, always aflame with lust. They are like an oven that is kept hot while the baker is kneading the dough. 5 On royal holidays, the princes get drunk with wine, carousing with those who mock them. 6 Their hearts are like an oven blazing with intrigue. Their plot smolders through the night, and in the morning it breaks out like a raging fire. 7 Burning like an oven, they consume their leaders. They kill their kings one after another, and no one cries to me for help. 8 “The people of Israel mingle with godless foreigners, making themselves as worthless as a half-baked cake! 9 Worshiping foreign gods has sapped their strength, but they don’t even know it. Their hair is gray, but they don’t realize they’re old and weak. 10 Their arrogance testifies against them, yet they don’t return to the LORD their God or even try to find him. 11 “The people of Israel have become like silly, witless doves, first calling to Egypt, then flying to Assyria for help. 12 But as they fly about, I will throw my net over them and bring them down like a bird from the sky. I will punish them for all the evil they do. 13 “What sorrow awaits those who have deserted me! Let them die, for they have rebelled against me. I wanted to redeem them, but they have told lies about me. 14 They do not cry out to me with sincere hearts. Instead, they sit on their couches and wail. They cut themselves, begging foreign gods for grain and new wine, and they turn away from me. 15 I trained them and made them strong, yet now they plot evil against me. 16 They look everywhere except to the Most High. They are as useless as a crooked bow. Their leaders will be killed by their enemies because of their insolence toward me. Then the people of Egypt will laugh at them.

Swept Up

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“Stay rooted in the Word so that you may not get swept up in a fallen world.”

TB

Unruly

When we don’t know about Christ, this world can seem like the only source of truth. It tells us that life is left to chance and to follow our own desires. To the unaware, this seems fine, but the truth is, this flies in the face of Christ and His teachings. The fallen world teaches chaos and destruction for the sole purpose of getting people to turn away from the Truth. When we’re occupied with our own agenda, Christ is an afterthought.

Rules of Engagement

Friends, learn how to tame your flesh, or else you will be ruled by it. The devil does not care about your possessions or anything else in this world. He wants to steal your faith so that you trade in your salvation for a bunch of lies. He does this by touting flesh-driven desires. Understanding this, work to build your relationship with Christ so that you can understand how to avoid the trappings of a fallen world.

Today’s Question

Are you developing your roots in Christ or are you swept up in your flesh?

Enjoy the reading

Hosea 4

1 Hear the word of the LORD, O people of Israel! The LORD has brought charges against you, saying: “There is no faithfulness, no kindness, no knowledge of God in your land. 2 You make vows and break them; you kill and steal and commit adultery. There is violence everywhere— one murder after another. 3 That is why your land is in mourning, and everyone is wasting away. Even the wild animals, the birds of the sky, and the fish of the sea are disappearing. 4 “Don’t point your finger at someone else and try to pass the blame! My complaint, you priests, is with you. 5 So you will stumble in broad daylight, and your false prophets will fall with you in the night. And I will destroy Israel, your mother. 6 My people are being destroyed because they don’t know me. Since you priests refuse to know me, I refuse to recognize you as my priests. Since you have forgotten the laws of your God, I will forget to bless your children. 7 The more priests there are, the more they sin against me. They have exchanged the glory of God for the shame of idols. 8 “When the people bring their sin offerings, the priests get fed. So the priests are glad when the people sin! 9 ‘And what the priests do, the people also do.’ So now I will punish both priests and people for their wicked deeds. 10 They will eat and still be hungry. They will play the prostitute and gain nothing from it, for they have deserted the LORD 11 to worship other gods. “Wine has robbed my people of their understanding. 12 They ask a piece of wood for advice! They think a stick can tell them the future! Longing after idols has made them foolish. They have played the prostitute, serving other gods and deserting their God. 13 They offer sacrifices to idols on the mountaintops. They go up into the hills to burn incense in the pleasant shade of oaks, poplars, and terebinth trees. “That is why your daughters turn to prostitution, and your daughters-in-law commit adultery. 14 But why should I punish them for their prostitution and adultery? For your men are doing the same thing, sinning with whores and shrine prostitutes. O foolish people! You refuse to understand, so you will be destroyed. 15 “Though you, Israel, are a prostitute, may Judah not be guilty of such things. Do not join the false worship at Gilgal or Beth-aven, and do not take oaths there in the LORD ’s name. 16 Israel is stubborn, like a stubborn heifer. So should the LORD feed her like a lamb in a lush pasture? 17 Leave Israel alone, because she is married to idolatry. 18 When the rulers of Israel finish their drinking, off they go to find some prostitutes. They love shame more than honor. 19 So a mighty wind will sweep them away. Their sacrifices to idols will bring them shame.

Build Up

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“In order for God to build you up, He must get rid of the buildup”

TB

Tear Down

If a house has a crack in the foundation, it will be plagued with structural issues. The same applies to man and our relationship with Christ. As such, God builds His children from the ground up, keeping only the proper materials for a firm foundation. Friends, it is important to understand that pruning occurs to take away what already is dying.

Shape Up

Loss occurs for new things to grow and flourish. With careful reflection and study, learn to see how God moves in your life to build up His direct relationship with you. Whatever held your attention before you put God first cannot remain. Still, you can rest assured that however, He builds you up, you are a remarkable creature in Him.

Today’s Question

Are you ready for Him to build you up?

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Hosea 2

1 “In that day you will call your brothers Ammi—‘My people.’ And you will call your sisters Ruhamah—‘The ones I love.’ 2 “But now bring charges against Israel—your mother— for she is no longer my wife, and I am no longer her husband. Tell her to remove the prostitute’s makeup from her face and the clothing that exposes her breasts. 3 Otherwise, I will strip her as naked as she was on the day she was born. I will leave her to die of thirst, as in a dry and barren wilderness. 4 And I will not love her children, for they were conceived in prostitution. 5 Their mother is a shameless prostitute and became pregnant in a shameful way. She said, ‘I’ll run after other lovers and sell myself to them for food and water, for clothing of wool and linen, and for olive oil and drinks.’ 6 “For this reason I will fence her in with thornbushes. I will block her path with a wall to make her lose her way. 7 When she runs after her lovers, she won’t be able to catch them. She will search for them but not find them. Then she will think, ‘I might as well return to my husband, for I was better off with him than I am now.’ 8 She doesn’t realize it was I who gave her everything she has— the grain, the new wine, the olive oil; I even gave her silver and gold. But she gave all my gifts to Baal. 9 “But now I will take back the ripened grain and new wine I generously provided each harvest season. I will take away the wool and linen clothing I gave her to cover her nakedness. 10 I will strip her naked in public, while all her lovers look on. No one will be able to rescue her from my hands. 11 I will put an end to her annual festivals, her new moon celebrations, and her Sabbath days— all her appointed festivals. 12 I will destroy her grapevines and fig trees, things she claims her lovers gave her. I will let them grow into tangled thickets, where only wild animals will eat the fruit. 13 I will punish her for all those times when she burned incense to her images of Baal, when she put on her earrings and jewels and went out to look for her lovers but forgot all about me,” says the LORD . 14 “But then I will win her back once again. I will lead her into the desert and speak tenderly to her there. 15 I will return her vineyards to her and transform the Valley of Trouble into a gateway of hope. She will give herself to me there, as she did long ago when she was young, when I freed her from her captivity in Egypt. 16 When that day comes,” says the LORD, “you will call me ‘my husband’ instead of ‘my master.’ 17 O Israel, I will wipe the many names of Baal from your lips, and you will never mention them again. 18 On that day I will make a covenant with all the wild animals and the birds of the sky and the animals that scurry along the ground so they will not harm you. I will remove all weapons of war from the land, all swords and bows, so you can live unafraid in peace and safety. 19 I will make you my wife forever, showing you righteousness and justice, unfailing love and compassion. 20 I will be faithful to you and make you mine, and you will finally know me as the LORD . 21 “In that day, I will answer,” says the LORD . “I will answer the sky as it pleads for clouds. And the sky will answer the earth with rain. 22 Then the earth will answer the thirsty cries of the grain, the grapevines, and the olive trees. And they in turn will answer, ‘Jezreel’—‘God plants!’ 23 At that time I will plant a crop of Israelites and raise them for myself. I will show love to those I called ‘Not loved.’ And to those I called ‘Not my people,’ I will say, ‘Now you are my people.’ And they will reply, ‘You are our

Go Home

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“When you’re feeling stuck or unsure, go home.”

TB

Place of Rest

It’s easy to get so busy and distracted. But left unchecked, that busyness can clog your ears and eyes, obscuring your connection to Christ. Friends, God never goes away, even when we do, so fortunately if you’re looking for Him, go home.

Ask Questions

It’s interesting that we will ask everyone and their mother about questions that pertain to our lives, yet we fail to ask God. Remember that He is always with you, so ask Him what your steps should be and quiet the noise so that you can hear His response.

Today’s Question

What’s stopping you from going home?

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Daniel 6

1 Darius the Mede decided to divide the kingdom into 120 provinces, and he appointed a high officer to rule over each province. 2 The king also chose Daniel and two others as administrators to supervise the high officers and protect the king’s interests. 3 Daniel soon proved himself more capable than all the other administrators and high officers. Because of Daniel’s great ability, the king made plans to place him over the entire empire. 4 Then the other administrators and high officers began searching for some fault in the way Daniel was handling government affairs, but they couldn’t find anything to criticize or condemn. He was faithful, always responsible, and completely trustworthy. 5 So they concluded, “Our only chance of finding grounds for accusing Daniel will be in connection with the rules of his religion.” 6 So the administrators and high officers went to the king and said, “Long live King Darius! 7 We are all in agreement—we administrators, officials, high officers, advisers, and governors—that the king should make a law that will be strictly enforced. Give orders that for the next thirty days any person who prays to anyone, divine or human—except to you, Your Majesty—will be thrown into the den of lions. 8 And now, Your Majesty, issue and sign this law so it cannot be changed, an official law of the Medes and Persians that cannot be revoked.” 9 So King Darius signed the law. 10 But when Daniel learned that the law had been signed, he went home and knelt down as usual in his upstairs room, with its windows open toward Jerusalem. He prayed three times a day, just as he had always done, giving thanks to his God. 11 Then the officials went together to Daniel’s house and found him praying and asking for God’s help. 12 So they went straight to the king and reminded him about his law. “Did you not sign a law that for the next thirty days any person who prays to anyone, divine or human—except to you, Your Majesty—will be thrown into the den of lions?” “Yes,” the king replied, “that decision stands; it is an official law of the Medes and Persians that cannot be revoked.” 13 Then they told the king, “That man Daniel, one of the captives from Judah, is ignoring you and your law. He still prays to his God three times a day.” 14 Hearing this, the king was deeply troubled, and he tried to think of a way to save Daniel. He spent the rest of the day looking for a way to get Daniel out of this predicament. 15 In the evening the men went together to the king and said, “Your Majesty, you know that according to the law of the Medes and the Persians, no law that the king signs can be changed.” 16 So at last the king gave orders for Daniel to be arrested and thrown into the den of lions. The king said to him, “May your God, whom you serve so faithfully, rescue you.” 17 A stone was brought and placed over the mouth of the den. The king sealed the stone with his own royal seal and the seals of his nobles, so that no one could rescue Daniel. 18 Then the king returned to his palace and spent the night fasting. He refused his usual entertainment and couldn’t sleep at all that night. 19 Very early the next morning, the king got up and hurried out to the lions’ den. 20 When he got there, he called out in anguish, “Daniel, servant of the living God! Was your God, whom you serve so faithfully, able to rescue you from the lions?” 21 Daniel answered, “Long live the king! 22 My God sent his angel to shut the lions’ mouths so that they would not hurt me, for I have been found innocent in his sight. And I have not wronged you, Your Majesty.” 23 The king was overjoyed and ordered that Daniel be lifted from the den. Not a scratch was found on him, for he had trusted in his God. 24 Then the king gave orders to arrest the men who had maliciously accused Daniel. He had them thrown into the lions’ den, along with their wives and children. The lions leaped on them and tore them apart before they even hit the floor of the den. 25 Then King Darius sent this message to the people of every race and nation and language throughout the world: “Peace and prosperity to you! 26 “I decree that everyone throughout my kingdom should tremble with fear before the God of Daniel. For he is the living God, and he will endure forever. His kingdom will never be destroyed, and his rule will never end. 27 He rescues and saves his people; he performs miraculous signs and wonders in the heavens and on earth. He has rescued Daniel from the power of the lions.” 28 So Daniel prospered during the reign of Darius and the reign of Cyrus the Persian.