Puff

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“Don’t let the pursuit of knowledge puff you up and stifle your ability to know God’s love.”

TB

Rigid

It’s one thing to learn to understand. It’s entirely another story when your knowledge base becomes a source of pride. Be careful not to idolize your own might. Like the Sadducees and Pharisees when we start to believe solely in our deeds, we begin to lose understanding of the One who overshadows all of our efforts.

Pales

Anything we learn on this earth pales in comparison to what God knows and has done. What good is it to learn every manmade concept in the world if you do not know the love of Christ? Friends, if we don’t know the importance of Christ and accept His freely given gift of salvation, we don’t know much at all.

Today’s Question

Are you too puffed up on yourself to acknowledge Christ?

Enjoy the reading

Hosea 13

1 When the tribe of Ephraim spoke, the people shook with fear, for that tribe was important in Israel. But the people of Ephraim sinned by worshiping Baal and thus sealed their destruction. 2 Now they continue to sin by making silver idols, images shaped skillfully with human hands. “Sacrifice to these,” they cry, “and kiss the calf idols!” 3 Therefore, they will disappear like the morning mist, like dew in the morning sun, like chaff blown by the wind, like smoke from a chimney. 4 “I have been the LORD your God ever since I brought you out of Egypt. You must acknowledge no God but me, for there is no other savior. 5 I took care of you in the wilderness, in that dry and thirsty land. 6 But when you had eaten and were satisfied, you became proud and forgot me. 7 So now I will attack you like a lion, like a leopard that lurks along the road. 8 Like a bear whose cubs have been taken away, I will tear out your heart. I will devour you like a hungry lioness and mangle you like a wild animal. 9 “You are about to be destroyed, O Israel— yes, by me, your only helper. 10 Now where is your king? Let him save you! Where are all the leaders of the land, the king and the officials you demanded of me? 11 In my anger I gave you kings, and in my fury I took them away. 12 “Ephraim’s guilt has been collected, and his sin has been stored up for punishment. 13 Pain has come to the people like the pain of childbirth, but they are like a child who resists being born. The moment of birth has arrived, but they stay in the womb! 14 “Should I ransom them from the grave ? Should I redeem them from death? O death, bring on your terrors! O grave, bring on your plagues! For I will not take pity on them. 15 Ephraim was the most fruitful of all his brothers, but the east wind—a blast from the LORD — will arise in the desert. All their flowing springs will run dry, and all their wells will disappear. Every precious thing they own will be plundered and carried away. 16 The people of Samaria must bear the consequences of their guilt because they rebelled against their God. They will be killed by an invading army, their little ones dashed to death against the ground, their pregnant women ripped open by swords.”

Modern Madness

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“Take up your cross and learn the Truth so that you untangle yourself from the madness of modern society.”

TB

Change

If we look at people and societal standards, its “truth” always changes. What was once in fashion is now lame. What was once immoral is now self expression. What was once wrong is now right. The world will constantly reinvent itself as its goal and its ruler is to distill confusion and corruption among God’s people. The madness of modern society is that the rules are always changing and nothing is ever true. Because of this, those who worship this world will always toil in anguish, confusion, and futility.

Constant

The reason why many fail to understand Christ is that their friendship with the world keeps them deaf, blind, and dumb from the Truth. Friends, if you serve money, your flesh, your peers, or even the evil one, you will never know the truth. That is because you cannot serve two masters. God’s word never changes. The teachings of Jesus still apply to this very day. If you desire to know the truth for yourself, you must first understand the honest motives of your heart. Deep down, we all know that culture and modern society corrupts our souls, but it takes humble humility to start asking and seeking the One who can open our eyes.

Today’s Question

If your desires align with today’s culture and not with Christ, what are you doing?

Enjoy the reading

Ezekiel 33

1 Once again a message came to me from the LORD : 2 “Son of man, give your people this message: ‘When I bring an army against a country, the people of that land choose one of their own to be a watchman. 3 When the watchman sees the enemy coming, he sounds the alarm to warn the people. 4 Then if those who hear the alarm refuse to take action, it is their own fault if they die. 5 They heard the alarm but ignored it, so the responsibility is theirs. If they had listened to the warning, they could have saved their lives. 6 But if the watchman sees the enemy coming and doesn’t sound the alarm to warn the people, he is responsible for their captivity. They will die in their sins, but I will hold the watchman responsible for their deaths.’ 7 “Now, son of man, I am making you a watchman for the people of Israel. Therefore, listen to what I say and warn them for me. 8 If I announce that some wicked people are sure to die and you fail to tell them to change their ways, then they will die in their sins, and I will hold you responsible for their deaths. 9 But if you warn them to repent and they don’t repent, they will die in their sins, but you will have saved yourself. 10 “Son of man, give the people of Israel this message: You are saying, ‘Our sins are heavy upon us; we are wasting away! How can we survive?’ 11 As surely as I live, says the Sovereign LORD, I take no pleasure in the death of wicked people. I only want them to turn from their wicked ways so they can live. Turn! Turn from your wickedness, O people of Israel! Why should you die? 12 “Son of man, give your people this message: The righteous behavior of righteous people will not save them if they turn to sin, nor will the wicked behavior of wicked people destroy them if they repent and turn from their sins. 13 When I tell righteous people that they will live, but then they sin, expecting their past righteousness to save them, then none of their righteous acts will be remembered. I will destroy them for their sins. 14 And suppose I tell some wicked people that they will surely die, but then they turn from their sins and do what is just and right. 15 For instance, they might give back a debtor’s security, return what they have stolen, and obey my life-giving laws, no longer doing what is evil. If they do this, then they will surely live and not die. 16 None of their past sins will be brought up again, for they have done what is just and right, and they will surely live. 17 “Your people are saying, ‘The Lord isn’t doing what’s right,’ but it is they who are not doing what’s right. 18 For again I say, when righteous people turn away from their righteous behavior and turn to evil, they will die. 19 But if wicked people turn from their wickedness and do what is just and right, they will live. 20 O people of Israel, you are saying, ‘The Lord isn’t doing what’s right.’ But I judge each of you according to your deeds.” 21 On January 8, during the twelfth year of our captivity, a survivor from Jerusalem came to me and said, “The city has fallen!” 22 The previous evening the LORD had taken hold of me and given me back my voice. So I was able to speak when this man arrived the next morning. 23 Then this message came to me from the LORD : 24 “Son of man, the scattered remnants of Israel living among the ruined cities keep saying, ‘Abraham was only one man, yet he gained possession of the entire land. We are many; surely the land has been given to us as a possession.’ 25 So tell these people, ‘This is what the Sovereign LORD says: You eat meat with blood in it, you worship idols, and you murder the innocent. Do you really think the land should be yours? 26 Murderers! Idolaters! Adulterers! Should the land belong to you?’ 27 “Say to them, ‘This is what the Sovereign LORD says: As surely as I live, those living in the ruins will die by the sword. And I will send wild animals to eat those living in the open fields. Those hiding in the forts and caves will die of disease. 28 I will completely destroy the land and demolish her pride. Her arrogant power will come to an end. The mountains of Israel will be so desolate that no one will even travel through them. 29 When I have completely destroyed the land because of their detestable sins, then they will know that I am the LORD .’ 30 “Son of man, your people talk about you in their houses and whisper about you at the doors. They say to each other, ‘Come on, let’s go hear the prophet tell us what the LORD is saying!’ 31 So my people come pretending to be sincere and sit before you. They listen to your words, but they have no intention of doing what you say. Their mouths are full of lustful words, and their hearts seek only after money. 32 You are very entertaining to them, like someone who sings love songs with a beautiful voice or plays fine music on an instrument. They hear what you say, but they don’t act on it! 33 But when all these terrible things happen to them—as they certainly will—then they will know a prophet has been among them.”

Way More

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Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“Whatever you ‘lose’ on your walk with God, you will receive way more in return.”~TB

Sacrifice

Walking with Christ, you will lose things. Friends that you thought would be around forever, activities that gave you temporary pleasure, and a mindset that led you astray. In the beginning, this loss, this “sacrifice” seems punitive and unfair. The people and the activities that once orbited your life no longer hold the same influence or joy. In this stage, it can feel more like a punishment than a blessing, but in time, you will see the change in tide that will lead you to better things.

Blessings

A relationship with Christ is the key to the self-imposed shackles that we place on ourselves. It’s funny, because some people will say that following God is restricting, but in reality, it’s actually quite liberating. You’re free to think objectively, not bowing down to the pressures of modern society. You know not to through away your hard-earned money on vanity and fruitless endeavors. You learn to love your neighbor as God loves you because you’ve experienced the Hand of God on your life. There is a freedom in Christ that is unlike any other, and if you take the time to study, listen, and learn it is way more than any man-made gift on this earth.

Today’s Question

Are you way more interested in the truth or society’s shackles?

Enjoy the Reading

Isaiah 31

1 What sorrow awaits those who look to Egypt for help, trusting their horses, chariots, and charioteers and depending on the strength of human armies instead of looking to the LORD, the Holy One of Israel.
2 In his wisdom, the LORD will send great disaster; he will not change his mind. He will rise against the wicked and against their helpers.
3 For these Egyptians are mere humans, not God! Their horses are puny flesh, not mighty spirits! When the LORD raises his fist against them, those who help will stumble, and those being helped will fall. They will all fall down and die together.
4But this is what the LORD has told me: “When a strong young lion stands growling over a sheep it has killed, it is not frightened by the shouts and noise of a whole crowd of shepherds. In the same way, the LORD of Heaven’s Armies will come down and fight on Mount Zion.
5 The LORD of Heaven’s Armies will hover over Jerusalem and protect it like a bird protecting its nest. He will defend and save the city; he will pass over it and rescue it.”
6 Though you are such wicked rebels, my people, come and return to the LORD .
7 I know the glorious day will come when each of you will throw away the gold idols and silver images your sinful hands have made.
8 “The Assyrians will be destroyed, but not by the swords of men. The sword of God will strike them, and they will panic and flee. The strong young Assyrians will be taken away as captives.
9 Even the strongest will quake with terror, and princes will flee when they see your battle flags,” says the LORD, whose fire burns in Zion, whose flame blazes from Jerusalem

Real

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Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“In order to have a real relationship with God, you must first be real with yourself.”~TB

Fake

Our society has done a great job getting people to pretend to be something they are not. Many spend time chasing things and people that don’t actually align with who they are, what they value, and the list goes on. So, if you can’t even be real for your sake, how will you maintain a real relationship with God? He knows you, but do you know you?

Called

God calls us for our own unique position and purpose. It takes certain characteristics and personalities to fill specific jobs. We are made according to our purpose. Of course, if I’m being you and you’re being me, how well can we fulfill our roles? Drop the act, stop being who you think you ought to be and be who God made you to be. It’s much easier than putting up a facade. More importantly, it’s how you grow deeper with your connection to Christ.

Real

When you keep it real with God, the shame of what you ‘lack’ lessens because you know where to fill your cup. If you’re looking to the world to replenish your needs, you will always come up short and lacking. Knowing Christ’s identity and His purpose goes a long way in growing your maturity. When you’re young and dumb, the flashy glitter of the world is worth throwing away your authentic self for a pat on the back and a path to Hell. As you spiritually grow, you will value the realness of God and the unique qualities He has bestowed upon you.

Today’s Question

Are you keeping it real or are you really faking it?

Enjoy the reading

Isaiah 13

1 Isaiah son of Amoz received this message concerning the destruction of Babylon:
2“Raise a signal flag on a bare hilltop. Call up an army against Babylon. Wave your hand to encourage them as they march into the palaces of the high and mighty.
3 I, the LORD, have dedicated these soldiers for this task. Yes, I have called mighty warriors to express my anger, and they will rejoice when I am exalted.”
4 Hear the noise on the mountains! Listen, as the vast armies march! It is the noise and shouting of many nations. The LORD of Heaven’s Armies has called this army together.
5 They come from distant countries, from beyond the farthest horizons. They are the LORD ’s weapons to carry out his anger. With them he will destroy the whole land.
6 Scream in terror, for the day of the LORD has arrived— the time for the Almighty to destroy.
7 Every arm is paralyzed with fear. Every heart melts,
8 and people are terrified. Pangs of anguish grip them, like those of a woman in labor. They look helplessly at one another, their faces aflame with fear.
9For see, the day of the LORD is coming— the terrible day of his fury and fierce anger. The land will be made desolate, and all the sinners destroyed with it.
10 The heavens will be black above them; the stars will give no light. The sun will be dark when it rises, and the moon will provide no light.
11 “I, the LORD, will punish the world for its evil and the wicked for their sin. I will crush the arrogance of the proud and humble the pride of the mighty.
12I will make people scarcer than gold— more rare than the fine gold of Ophir.
13 For I will shake the heavens. The earth will move from its place when the LORD of Heaven’s Armies displays his wrath in the day of his fierce anger.”
14 Everyone in Babylon will run about like a hunted gazelle, like sheep without a shepherd. They will try to find their own people and flee to their own land.
15 Anyone who is captured will be cut down— run through with a sword.
16 Their little children will be dashed to death before their eyes. Their homes will be sacked, and their wives will be raped.
17 “Look, I will stir up the Medes against Babylon. They cannot be tempted by silver or bribed with gold.
18 The attacking armies will shoot down the young men with arrows. They will have no mercy on helpless babies and will show no compassion for children.”
19 Babylon, the most glorious of kingdoms, the flower of Chaldean pride, will be devastated like Sodom and Gomorrah when God destroyed them.
20 Babylon will never be inhabited again. It will remain empty for generation after generation. Nomads will refuse to camp there, and shepherds will not bed down their sheep.
21 Desert animals will move into the ruined city, and the houses will be haunted by howling creatures. Owls will live among the ruins, and wild goats will go there to dance.
22 Hyenas will howl in its fortresses, and jackals will make dens in its luxurious palaces. Babylon’s days are numbered; its time of destruction will soon arrive.

 

Freedumb

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Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“If God has set you free, don’t be dumb by continuing on with your broken lifestyle.”~TB

Restoration

Through salvation, you are set free from the bondage that comes from the evils of the world, the devil, and your flesh. God does this so you can live in freedom, so don’t be dumb! But, what does that mean? When you walk with Christ, you begin to see the many dumb practices society pushes onto you. With this new clarity, you have a choice to abandon your old ways and adopt better behaviors. When you stay the course, you begin to crave discipline, hard work, kindness, and humility– all of the wonderful Christ-like traits that the Holy Spirit instills in you when you accept God’s highest gift. Friends, if you’ve received Christ, chose freedom, not freedumb.

Destruction

If you don’t cultivate your relationship with God, the trappings of this world will consume because you were not careful. Friends, be discerning with what you consider to be freedom. Expensive things trap you in a cycle of debt. Toxic people trap you in a cycle of anguish and trouble. Drugs and bad substances trap you in a cycle of confusion and numbness. Envying your neighbor traps you in a cycle of anger and jealousy within your heart. These things do not set you free, they enslave you. Should you choose this modern slavery, connecting with God’s teaching becomes much more difficult. Avoid the traps and turn to Him. Walking with God helps you see the battlefield as it truly is. He shows you the landmines so that you may not become a casualty.

Today’s Question

Do you understand the difference between freedom and freedumb?

Enjoy the reading

Proverbs 13

1 A wise child accepts a parent’s discipline; a mocker refuses to listen to correction. 
2 Wise words will win you a good meal, but treacherous people have an appetite for violence. 
3 Those who control their tongue will have a long life; opening your mouth can ruin everything. 
4 Lazy people want much but get little, but those who work hard will prosper. 
5 The godly hate lies; the wicked cause shame and disgrace. 
6 Godliness guards the path of the blameless, but the evil are misled by sin. 
7 Some who are poor pretend to be rich; others who are rich pretend to be poor. 
8 The rich can pay a ransom for their lives, but the poor won’t even get threatened. 
9 The life of the godly is full of light and joy, but the light of the wicked will be snuffed out. 
10 Pride leads to conflict; those who take advice are wise. 
11 Wealth from get-rich-quick schemes quickly disappears; wealth from hard work grows over time. 
12Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a dream fulfilled is a tree of life. 
13 People who despise advice are asking for trouble; those who respect a command will succeed. 
14The instruction of the wise is like a life-giving fountain; those who accept it avoid the snares of death. 
15 A person with good sense is respected; a treacherous person is headed for destruction. 
16 Wise people think before they act; fools don’t—and even brag about their foolishness. 
17 An unreliable messenger stumbles into trouble, but a reliable messenger brings healing. 
18 If you ignore criticism, you will end in poverty and disgrace; if you accept correction, you will be honored. 
19 It is pleasant to see dreams come true, but fools refuse to turn from evil to attain them. 
20Walk with the wise and become wise; associate with fools and get in trouble. 
21 Trouble chases sinners, while blessings reward the righteous. 
22 Good people leave an inheritance to their grandchildren, but the sinner’s wealth passes to the godly. 
23 A poor person’s farm may produce much food, but injustice sweeps it all away. 
24Those who spare the rod of discipline hate their children. Those who love their children care enough to discipline them. 
25 The godly eat to their hearts’ content, but the belly of the wicked goes hungry.

Application

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Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“Understanding God’s Word is fairly simple. Applying it to your life, well, that’s a whole other animal.”~TB

In Theory

In theory, love sacrifice, patience, long-suffering, and perseverance are lovely and beautiful concepts. When you speak them to one another, those words provide a false sense of accomplishment. In today’s society, people sing sweet nothings, as if spraying perfume on a stinky body, in an attempt to hide the foul smell. Words without deeds are empty. Many of you have filled your hearts and minds with empty rhetoric. Friends, listen carefully: as idiot people, we have subjugated those words, turning them into nouns when they really are verbs!

In Practice

Love, sacrifice, patience, long-suffering, and perseverance requires DOING! You can’t just say the words and poof life is wonderful. You have to love when it’s hard. You have to be patient in tough times. You have to be long-suffering when the odds aren’t in your favor. You have to persevere when failure comes your way. Anyone can be an armchair quarterback. It takes humility in understanding that God can only help you with this verbs. You cannot overcome your sinful nature on your own.

Today’s Question

Are you applying the verbs or do you stink under the perfume of fake words?

Enjoy the reading

Psalm 137

1 Beside the rivers of Babylon, we sat and wept as we thought of Jerusalem. 
2 We put away our harps, hanging them on the branches of poplar trees. 
3 For our captors demanded a song from us. Our tormentors insisted on a joyful hymn: “Sing us one of those songs of Jerusalem!” 
4But how can we sing the songs of the LORD while in a pagan land? 
5 If I forget you, O Jerusalem, let my right hand forget how to play the harp. 
6May my tongue stick to the roof of my mouth if I fail to remember you, if I don’t make Jerusalem my greatest joy. 
7 O LORD, remember what the Edomites did on the day the armies of Babylon captured Jerusalem. “Destroy it!” they yelled. “Level it to the ground!” 
8 O Babylon, you will be destroyed. Happy is the one who pays you back for what you have done to us. 
9 Happy is the one who takes your babies and smashes them against the rocks!