Tag Archives: tell

Your Friends and Family are Special to God

Is there anything you think is really wonderful, which you want to tell people about?

Written by Hope on 11/08/2013
Series: Weekly Devotional
Tags: Evangelism, Family, Friends, Relationships, Salvation
"The Lord is not slow in keeping His promise, as some understand slowness. Instead, He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance." (2 Peter 3:9)

A friend of mine just told me about a television show she likes. She said, "When I find something really good, I get excited, and I want to tell my friends about it." What about you? is there anything you think is really wonderful, which you want to tell people about?

Amazing Things
One day, in the course of His travels, Jesus stopped at a well in a Samaritan village. He met a woman there and told her amazing things, revealing, "I AM the Messiah!" (John 4:26). She was so excited that she "left her water jar beside the well and ran back to the village, telling everyone" (John 4:28). Have you ever learned something so amazing that you can’t wait to tell everyone about it?

His Message
On the morning of Jesus' resurrection, His followers found His tomb empty, but "they still hadn’t understood the Scriptures that said Jesus must rise from the dead" (John 20:9). Mary Magdalene stayed behind, weeping. But Jesus appeared to her, proving His triumph over death. He instructed her to tell the others about the miracle, and she obeyed: "Mary Magdalene found the Disciples and told them, 'I have seen the Lord!' Then she gave them His message" (John 20:18). When the Lord instructs you to share His words, how do you respond?

Good News
When the Samaritan woman told her people about Jesus, "many Samaritans from the village believed in Jesus because [of what] the woman had said" (John 4:39). But when Mary Magdalene "told [the Disciples] that Jesus was alive and she had seen Him, they didn’t believe her" (Mark 16:11) until He appeared to them Himself.

Jesus told His followers, "Go into all the world and preach the Good News to everyone" (Mark 16:15). Today, His followers carry on with the task. As in Jesus’ day, some will believe; but other times, even our dearest friends or family members will refuse God’s truth. When the Lord asks you to tell others the Good News, will you run to do it, like the Samaritan woman and Mary Magdalene?

Prayer, Care, and Share Jesus
Scripture: 2 Peter 3:8-9.

It is so wonderful to know from 2 Peter 3:8-9 that the Lord is patient with us, as He does not want anyone to perish but all to come to repentance. It’s important to always remember that every action you take can be a vital step to move someone closer to everlasting life through Jesus Christ.

So, this week I want to challenge you with a specific task. Think about five people you know, who don’t yet know Jesus as Lord and Savior, or have turned away from Him. These may be family, friends or colleagues at work or school. Maybe you have shared Jesus already with them, but they have not chosen to follow Him. You care about these people and really want to see them come to know Christ. You now know that the Lord shares your heart because of what He says in 2 Peter 3:8-9.

Here’s the challenge. Write those five names in a journal, the front of your Bible, or a sticky note on your computer monitor — wherever you will see them daily. Practice sharing your faith with them daily. You can use techniques you’ve learned in this guide from past weeks to help you. Let’s call this the “Take 5 Challenge”. There will be more about this challenge in upcoming Weekly Prayer Letters.

How long do you do this? Until each person has accepted Jesus as Lord and Savior, or at least one year. When any of them become believers, add the name of another friend or loved one to your “Take 5” list. I challenge you to “Take 5” until the day you are too old to pray anymore!

“Take 5” is therefore a serious effort between you and the Lord and the people on your list. So think carefully about these five people and talk to the Lord about them often, keeping in mind the Scripture 2 Peter 3:8-9.

Pray this week:

God will help you choose five people to minister to.

Why do you think it is harder to tell our loved ones about Jesus and the way to Salvation? Talk to someone about your fears.

Talk About It

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Healing Stories in the Bible

Is it better to live with the disease or to be healed?

Written by Lois on 21/03/2017
Series: Weekly Devotional
Tags: Grace, Healing, Mercy, Sickness, Sin
One who was there had been an invalid for thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there and learned that he had been in this condition for a long time, he asked him, ‘Do you want to get well?'

John 5:5
In Bible times, leprosy was a dreaded, incurable skin condition. It caused physical deformity. It meant victims couldn’t come to worship meetings. They had to live by themselves. It made a good picture of what sin does to us. Sin is a disease that affects young and old, great and small. It cuts us off from God and from others.

Sometimes We’re Reluctant
The Old Testament book of 2 Kings tells about a man named Naaman. He was a great army captain in the time of the prophet Elisha. Naaman had been told the prophet could heal him of his leprosy, and paid him a visit. Instead of meeting him, Elisha sent a messenger instructing Naaman to wash himself in the Jordan River.

Naaman was insulted, saying, “I thought he would certainly come out to meet me!…Aren’t the rivers of Damascus (his home country)…better than any of the rivers of Israel?” (2 Kings 5:12)

Humility is Part of the Cure
At first, Naaman was too proud to accept Elisha’s “prescription.” In the same way, many people today let their pride stand in the way of accepting God’s plan of salvation.

It was a good thing that Naaman’s officers had better advice. They convinced him to take the treatment: “So Naaman went down to the Jordan River and dipped himself seven times, as the man of God had instructed him. And his skin became as healthy as the skin of a young child, and he was healed!” (2 Kings 5:14)

When You Hear His voice, Don't Harden Your Hearts (Hebrews 3:15)
From birth, we’re all “infected” with something worse than leprosy. It’s sin. It is our very nature, not just our actions, that offends God’s holiness. “You are not a God Who is pleased with what is bad. The sinful cannot be with You.” (Psalm 5:4)

What is the result of sin? “When sin completes its work, it brings death.” (James 1:15) — not just physical death, but eternal separation from God. When heaven is described in the Bible’s final book, it says, “No one who is sinful-minded or tells lies can go in.” (Revelation 21:27) Fortunately, this verse continues: “Only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of life can go in.”

God’s way is not just the best way: it is the only way. Naaman’s leprosy was washed away when he humbled himself and submitted. Jesus, the Lamb of God, is willing to wash away your sin. Are you willing to trust Him today?

Pray this week:

Father, help me to be as concerned about my spiritual condition as my physical health, and also to tell others how their souls can be healed by Jesus.

If you have already been washed in the blood of the Lamb, can you tell others? If you’re intimidated, remember that it was a humble servant girl (2 Kings 5:2-4) who told the great general where to find healing!

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children and fools tell the truth

http://dai.ly/x3x61s9 

This little girl wrote a letter shortly before being killed by her father. How sobering.
You might be familiar with the proverb, “children and fools tell the truth.” But the truth that comes from this little girl’s mouth isn’t something a fool would say; instead, it feels like a dagger to the heart when you hear it.
There should be no mystery as to who the “Jack” in the story is. This video has such an important message, one that needs to be heard and remembered — both children and adults can be victims of violent abuse. Alcohol can make people so incredibly aggressive and unpredictable. The words of this eight-year-old girl should not be ignored, however hard they may be to hear. 

http://dai.ly/x3x61s9 

 

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Did God Put a Hole in My Pocket?

Does your money vanish like a vapor?

Written by Lois on 07/06/2016
Series: Weekly Devotional
You have planted much but harvest little…You earn money, but put it into a bag with holes.

Haggai 1:6
On a hot summer day you can actually see water evaporating from a stream. Does your money appear to be vanishing? Are you constantly spending more than you earn? Maybe the solution is not getting more money into your hands. Let’s go to God’s word to see what the Scriptures say about money. Do you believe God cares about what you do with the money you earn?

What has first place in your life, God or money?
For one month, try writing down all of your purchases. This is a good way to reveal where your money is going and what has first place in your heart. Does God have first place, or do you spend most of your money eating out or buying clothes and other material things? Jesus said in Matthew 6:33, “…first and most importantly seek (aim at, strive after) His kingdom and His righteousness (His way of doing…the attitude and character of God), and these things will be given to you also.”

How often do you help those less fortunate than you?
Selfishly using money we earn is the opposite of what the Father has instructed us to do. Do we forget to help someone else or help the church we attend? “Give, and it will be given to you…running over. For by your standard of measure it will be measured to you in return.” (Luke 6:38)

At some point in my walk with Jesus, I realized that it was part of my obligation as a Christian to give a portion of my income to my church. The Apostle Paul told the church he planted in the city of Corinth, “On every Lord’s Day each of you should put aside something from what you have earned during the week, and use it for this offering.” (1 Corinthians 16:2)

Pray this week:

Father, forgive me for not putting You first in my life. Help me remember to keep You first in my heart.

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Four Biblical Thoughts on Riches. Does God want us to be rich?

Does God want us to be rich?

Written by Dan Lee on 15/03/2015
Series: Weekly Devotional
Tags: Contentment, Finances, Money, Poor, Riches
“Yet true godliness with contentment is itself great wealth.” 1 Timothy 6:6

Are some preachers right when they say God wants us to be rich? They tell us we can get anything just by praying for it. Their lavish lifestyles seem to be an example of how God wants to “bless” us. Paul wrote a letter to Timothy and gave a strong NO to this idea. Here are 4 biblical thoughts on riches:

1. Be Content With God
“Yet true godliness with contentment is itself great wealth” (1 Timothy 6:6). This verse tells us that if we are believers in Christ and have a good relationship with God, we should be satisfied. We are already wealthy. On the other hand, when we place anything, including material things, above God, we make idols out of them. How terrible it would be if following Jesus helped us only in this life! (1 Corinthians 15:19) God may use the resources of wealthy people. But James 1:9-11 reminds us that material wealth adds nothing to our value. (Luke 12:15)

2. Eternity is What Matters
Whether we are rich or poor, none of our earthly goods will go with us to Heaven. “After all, we brought nothing with us when we came into the world, and we can’t take anything with us when we leave it” (1 Timothy 6:7). The more we understand that Heaven is our true home, the less we will care about getting more stuff, and the more we will use our possessions for God’s glory. Then, we can be like the widow in Luke 21:1-4 who gave all she had and did not worry about what she kept for herself.

3. The Basics are Enough
The Bible talks about those whose "…thinking has been confused. They have lost their understanding of the truth. They think that devotion to God is a way to get rich.” (1 Timothy 6:5) However, Jesus warns how hard it is for rich people to follow Him (Matthew 19:16-26). But poverty does not measure godliness either. A great biblical model is the Apostle Paul, who said “So if we have enough food and clothing, let us be content” (1 Timothy 6:8). We don’t need a lot of nice clothes, or to eat at fancy restaurants every day. We just need to work hard to provide for our families, and trust the Lord to meet our needs.

4. Riches Can Ruin Us
The Apostle Paul tells us the 10th Commandment, (“you shall not covet”), was the way God showed him the sin in his heart. (Romans 7:7) When we desire riches, it may lead us to lie, cheat or, in extreme cases, steal and murder! “People who long to be rich fall into temptation and are trapped by many foolish and harmful desires that plunge them into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil . . .” (1 Timothy 6:9-10). But if we submit our lives to God and His Holy Spirit, He leads us to live in a way that helps and blesses others, and brings glory to Him.

Pray this week:

that God will help you use money and wealth to please Him

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Do You Have to Go to Church?

Let’s find out the true meaning of church.

Written by Joy on 30/11/2014
Series: Weekly Devotional
Tags: Church And Community
“Do not give up meeting together as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near.” Hebrews 10:25

There are church services on television and the Internet. But is it ok to stay at home and watch a church service? Or do we have to go to a physical church building? Let’s find out the true meaning of church.

Church: The Body of Christ
When God talks about the church, he isn’t talking about a physical building. The church is all the people in the world who have put their faith in Jesus, sometimes called the body of Christ.

Christians are instructed to meet together regularly. (Hebrews 10:25) Many Christians go to church buildings (local churches). But if there isn’t a local church near you, don’t worry. You can meet in a house church, a secret meeting place or a public place where you can fellowship. The important thing is to meet with other Christians so you can learn, fellowship, and work together to teach others about God.

Divide and Conquer: Enemy Strategy
It’s not easy to overpower a group of people because there’s strength in numbers. But if you divide them, you can easily conquer. The Bible even talks about the benefits of being with another person instead of being alone. “Two are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble.” (Ecclesiastes 4:9-10)

As Christians, we have an enemy who wants to divide us. “Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour.” (I Peter 5:8). Satan tries to separate you from other believers because he knows you are weaker when you are alone. When we are in a group, we can support each other, hold each other accountable and pray for each other. Satan will not be able to drag one of us off into the wilderness of unbelief, doubt, or despair.

United in Love: Jesus’ Prayer
Jesus prayed for us to be united. (John 17:9-11). He told us to “Love one another” (John 13:34) and “Encourage one another” (I Thessalonians 5:11). You’ll be able to do all of that and more when you’re united with other believers by meeting together. If you haven’t put your faith in Jesus yet, become a part of the body of Christ today and you can begin meeting with other believers too!

Pray this week:

That God will direct you to a local church where you can belong and how you can be an encouragement to other believers.

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What Happens When We Die?

Rich or poor, in spite of all our efforts, everyone will die sooner or later. There are many opinions about what happens when we die. But what does God have to say about it?

Written by Dan Lee on 01/06/2014
Series: Weekly Devotional
Tags: Death, Eternity, Heaven, Hell, Jesus
“And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment . . .” Hebrews 9:27

Death is Certain
Rich or poor, in spite of all our efforts, everyone will die sooner or later. There are many opinions about what happens when we die. But what does God have to say about it?

Eternal Life – Two Kinds
God’s word, the Bible, tells us that each person’s soul lives forever. Today’s scripture from Hebrews tells us that after death comes judgment. This leads us to one of two destinies: Heaven or Hell.

We know that Christians, who have received God’s free gift of salvation and forgiveness, will spend eternity in Heaven. There, they will have loving fellowship with God and His people. Sadly, those who have rejected Jesus Christ will not go to Heaven. The Bible teaches that their certain destiny is Hell. In hell, suffering, hopelessness and regret last forever. There is an absence of God that brings deep grief.

Heaven is the best possible place to spend eternity and Hell is the worst. The difference between these two outcomes is very big.

The Decision is Yours
Church attendance won’t get you into Heaven. Nor will living a good life, or doing good deeds. Romans 3:23 says, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” Later in Romans we find that “the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23).

We must first admit that we are sinful and separated from God. Then we must turn away from our sins, turn to Jesus Christ, and ask for God’s forgiveness. By believing that Jesus took the punishment that we deserved, we accept and receive God’s gracious gift of salvation by faith. “For as many as received Him, he gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believed in His name” (John 1:12).

Don’t Delay
No matter your age, there’s no guarantee that you will live until tomorrow. In Luke 12:16-21, Jesus told a story of a rich man who trusted in his possessions. “But God said to him, ‘Fool! This night your soul is required of you, and the things you have prepared, whose will they be?’” (Luke 16:20).

I urge you: Don’t wait another day to come to Jesus for salvation. Find out how to accept Jesus Christ today.

Pray this week:

To thank God for sending His Son, Jesus, to offer forgiveness of your sins.

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Care for People All Around You

The book of Ruth in the Old Testament tells a beautiful story about love and loyalty among family.

Written by Hope on 28/04/2013
Series: Weekly Devotional
Tags: God, Love, Loyalty, Relationships
"And may the Lord make your love for one another and for all people grow and overflow, just as our love for you overflows." (1 Thessalonians 3:12)

The book of Ruth in the Old Testament tells a beautiful story about love and loyalty among family.

Naomi, an Israelite, had traveled with her husband and sons to the foreign land of Moab to escape a famine. Her sons married local women, one of them being Ruth. When the husband and the sons died, Naomi chose to return to Israel and her people.

Love Each Other
Naomi and her daughters-in-law loved each other dearly. Wanting them to be provided for, Naomi urged them to remain in Moab to remarry. However, Ruth chose to stay with Naomi, dedicated to serving her mother-in-law — and God. She demonstrated a love and loyalty the Apostles Paul and John would describe many years later: “those who won’t care for their relatives, especially those in their own household, have denied the true faith” (1 Timothy 5:8) and “those who love God must also love their Christian brothers and sisters” (1 John 4:21).

Avoid Evil and Pray
In Israel, Ruth provided for herself and Naomi by gathering leftover grain. She chose a field owned by Boaz, one of Naomi’s distant relatives. Boaz told Ruth to keep gathering on his land, where she’d be safe from dangerous men elsewhere. This mirrors God’s warning to His people against close contact with those who chose evil: “If you do, you will follow their evil ways and be trapped” (Exodus 34:12). If we can’t avoid harm, though, Jesus said to “Pray for those who hurt you” (Luke 6:28). We should avoid evil ways, but care about, and pray for, people who choose evil.

Care – No Matter What
Naomi loved Ruth, wanting to see her married and settled. She instructed Ruth to ask Boaz to take care of her (and Naomi) by marrying Ruth. Although Ruth was a poor foreigner, Boaz treated her with godly care and agreed. Jesus spoke of providing for others: “when you [cared for] one of the least of these people, you [cared for] Me” (Matthew 25:40). We, too, should show godly concern for others, especially those in need.

When Ruth chose to go with Naomi rather than stay with her own people, she said, “Wherever you go, I will go; wherever you live, I will live. Your people will be my people, and your God will be my God” (Ruth 1:16).

Naomi’s devotion to the Living God caused Ruth to turn from the idols of her native Moab. Wouldn’t it be awesome if your love for God and for people would inspire others to turn from sin and follow God?

Prayer, Care and Share Jesus
Care for people in need around you!

Scripture: "Then the King will say to those on his right, 'Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me"

Then the righteous will answer him, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, and thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?'

"The King will reply, 'Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.' (Matthew 25:35-40)

The Prayer, Care & Share Jesus guide, encourages you to care for people around you because of what Jesus said in the Bible. People in the passage above could hardly believe that Jesus compared their deeds for others to the way they served Jesus. But, it is really that important to Jesus because his love and care is unconditional and he wants us to live like He did as much as we can.

How do we care for people the way Jesus would every day? Be aware of the needs of people around you – for the homeless, the poor, the hungry, the broken, the discouraged. Use the Prayer Care Share guide as a way to reach out to them. Pray for God's blessing and care, on them. Prepare yourself to care for them. Remember, Jesus did warn that sometimes, the person he wants us to help, may be a person that we don’t want to help. But, he tells us to even love and pray for our enemies.

When someone has a need, you can help them or encourage them. Or if you can’t solve the problem, ask the Lord to solve it.

There are all kinds of things that cause people to be in need. Take a moment and think about ways people in your life may need to be cared for right now. They may be saying things like:

My child is ill.
My brother was wounded in battle.
I have no money for transport to go home today.
My mother is an alcoholic.
My computer crashed and I don’t know how to fix it.
I am writing an important test tomorrow and am worried about it.
I need a job.
When you hear this, it’s possible the Lord has called you to care for them. How will you respond to His call?

Pray this week:

The book of Ruth in the Old Testament tells a beautiful story about love and loyalty among family.

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 Don’t let anyone tell you what you can’t do.

Peter Kesaris
Director of Architecture & Design Customer Experience at Empire Office
6 years ago to date, I was hit by a car and nearly killed. After being stuck in a wheelchair for 6 months, doctors didn't know if I would be able to walk normally again. This week I ran my first half marathon.  Don't let anyone tell you what you can't do.  Follow my story on Instagram: @pakjan6 (edited) 

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The Idolatry of People-Pleasing

The Idolatry of People-Pleasing
What if I'm more afraid to displease important people than God?

Written by GodLife on 13/09/2016
Series: Weekly Devotional
Tags: Relationships, Influence, Submission, Idolatry
So now run away to your place. I said I would give you much honor, but the Lord has kept you from honor.

Numbers 24:11
A story in the Bible's book of Numbers shows how dangerous the desire to “please men” can be (Colossians 3:22). This story is mentioned a lot in the Bible. Each mention comes with a warning.

God wants us to take note: what can this story teach us about ourselves?

1. It is Dangerous To Look For God’s Permission And Not His Approval
Fearing Israel, King Balak sent for the prophet Balaam. God told Balaam not to go. King Balak persisted, so Balaam asked God again.

God seemed persuaded: he gave Balaam permission to go. On his journey, the donkey he was riding was blocked by an angel with a drawn sword. The donkey refused to keep going, angering Balaam so much that he beat the animal. Before he could kill her, God allowed the donkey to speak, warning him of the danger. God then opened Balaam’s eyes to see the angel standing ready to kill him!

Just as the donkey’s actions went against Balaam’s plan for her, Balaam himself had nearly been killed for resisting God. But Balaam presses again, and finds the permission, (not the approval), of God.

2. There is Danger in Getting Around God’s Purposes
Accompanying the messengers back to Midian, Balaam at first blesses Israel instead of cursing them. God had warned him to do only as he was told. (Numbers 22:20) Balak is furious. Later we’re told (Numbers 31:16) that Balaam taught the Midianite women to seduce the Israelite men into idolatry. (Numbers 25:1-3) Terrified by Balak, Balaam cunningly thought of a way to curse the Israelites without speaking the curse himself, still a violation of God's instructions.

3. The Outcome of the Fear of Man
Balaam’s conduct shows perversion in a believer's walk:

The “way of Balaam” (2 Peter 2:15) — “against” God. (Numbers 22:32) If it was to his advantage, Balaam didn’t fear taking God's mercy for granted. In his heart, he said, “God has said ‘no’ to this–maybe there's a way I can do it anyway.”
The “error of Balaam” (Jude 11) — failing to learn the lesson of the encounter. Balaam was physically stopped and even threatened.
The “doctrine of Balaam” (Revelation 2:14) — passing this attitude along. Balaam was willing to try to spoil the purpose of God.

Presumption leads to the error of trying to get around God’s will. This means we manipulate, teach or become a bad example, leading others down the same corrupt path. Balaam may have said the Lord was his God. But he had idolatry in his life all along: respect of human favor over God’s. How much will God allow if we presume upon His grace? Balaam’s idolatry led him to serve God’s enemies, curse himself (Numbers 23:9) and demonstrate God’s denial of his prayers (Numbers 23:10) in the manner of his death. (Numbers 31:8)

Pray this week:

Father, I surrender myself to you again. I want your way to prevail in my life. Protect me from presumptuous sin.

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