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Daily Disciples

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Re: Daily Disciples

Post  Admin on Wed 11 May 2011, 11:22 am

May 11
Today's Reading: Proverbs 10-12; 2 Corinthians 4
Today’s Thoughts: To Believe is to Live
Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins; for if you do not believe that I am He, you will die in your sins." John 8:24
The Pharisees were always trying to catch Jesus off guard. Regardless of what Jesus was teaching, they would test Him. The Pharisees were the religious leaders and teachers of the day. They knew the Scriptures better than anyone and were always ready to tell others how to live by them. They were superior in their righteousness, or so they thought. They enjoyed their status, their power and the honor given to them by man. Jesus however, created problems for them in His teachings. The people wanted to hear more of what Jesus had to say. The Pharisees were threatened as they saw their power diminishing, as more and more people followed Jesus. How sad to realize that the very One whom they had been waiting for their whole lives was in their midst and they did not recognize Him!
The people who denied Jesus would die in their sins because they refused to believe that He is the Son of God. When all is said and done, the verse above sums up the truth. If we do not believe in Jesus, we will die in our sins. Sadly, there are still Pharisees in our world today who think that by knowledge and good works they have the answers. There are those who can recite Scripture to justify any argument or prove any point and are always instructing others on how to live godly lives. Then, there are those who truly try hard to do what is right. They volunteer for ministry services, give freely to others in need and are kind-hearted to everyone. On the outside, both types look very godly and religious. But what about on the inside?
Jesus is not impressed with our "good" works. Our best intentions mean nothing in the kingdom of God. We are born of sin, live sinful lives and will die in our sins, unless we do one thing—believe in Jesus. It is not the kind of belief that acknowledges His existence or His role. James 2:18 tells us that, “even the demons believe and tremble.” The word “believe” means to adhere to, rely on, trust in, and depend upon. Do you believe in Jesus Christ according to His definition of the word? Do you absolutely depend upon Him for your salvation? Do you know that there is nothing you can add to your salvation and that there is no good work that you can do for eternal security? The only requirement is faith. The only One who can cleanse us from our sins is Jesus Christ, and the only way we can be cleansed is by believing in Him alone. Today, you can know Him. Dear Lord, I want to know Your Son Jesus. I know that I am a sinner who cannot do enough good works to earn my salvation. I am lost without You. I want You to bemy Lord and Savior forever more.
Our mission is to evangelize the lost and awaken the saved to live empowered lives by the Work of God and His Holy Spirit. Daily Disciples Ministries makes a difference for the kingdom of God by teaching and training believers how to be in God's Word, how to pray and how to walk with Jesus every day, as His daily disciple.
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Re: Daily Disciples

Post  Admin on Tue 10 May 2011, 2:16 pm

May 10
Today's Reading: Proverbs 8-9; 2 Corinthians 3
Today's Thoughts: The Unveiling
But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord. 2 Corinthians 3:18
In the Old Testament book of Exodus, Moses describes the building of the tabernacle. This tabernacle is to be built on earth as a copy of heavenly things, a place where God can dwell with His people. Its design and construction are described in great detail in Exodus Chapters 26 through 28, then again in Chapters 34 through 38. One of its most beautiful pieces was a veil that separated the Holy of Holies from the Sanctuary. The veil represented man's separation from God; man at that time had no real fellowship with God. Only Moses could enter into such personal fellowship with God. He would come in such intimate contact with God that even his face shone with the glory of the Lord. Moses would use a veil to cover his face. 2 Corinthians 3:13 says that Moses used the veil to keep the people from seeing what was passing away, but the next verse states that their minds were blinded. It was as though the minds of the people had their own veil that kept them from really seeing the truth. Years later when Jesus died on the cross, this veil, still used to separate the two sections of the temple, was torn in two. Jesus died so that we may have personal fellowship with God. No longer was a veil needed, because there was no longer a need for separation. The only veil left is the one that we keep, over those areas we have not yet surrendered to God.
Do you have a veil covering part of your heart or mind? As Christians, we might be quick to say, "Of course not, I love Jesus and I know His Spirit lives within me." I am one of those Christians who not only would say it, but also would believe it with all my being. How can I be veiled in any area when I so desperately want all that the Lord has for me? How can I be blinded when all I want is to see with spiritual eyes? But the closer I walk with the Lord, the more I understand how blind I really am. A veil does not have to be thick. The veil in the temple was about three feet thick. I have learned that the veils that cover my heart and mind can be quite thin, enough to let me see through but not enough to let me see clearly. The problem comes when I think I am seeing clearly but am really only seeing through a fog. Then the Lord begins to show me things so crystal clear that I can barely look at them. The Lord begins to unveil parts of me.
We must go through this process with the Lord if we want to continue to grow in our walk with Him. Breakthroughs come and strongholds are broken when we get through these types of trials.
Our mission is to evangelize the lost and awaken the saved to live empowered lives by the Work of God and His Holy Spirit. Daily Disciples Ministries makes a difference for the kingdom of God by teaching and training believers how to be in God's Word, how to pray and how to walk with Jesus every day, as His daily disciple.
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Re: Daily Disciples

Post  Admin on Mon 09 May 2011, 11:40 am

May 9
Today's Reading: Proverbs 6-7; 2 Corinthians 2
Today's Thoughts: Aroma of Christ
But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumphal procession in Christ and through us spreads everywhere the fragrance of the knowledge of him. For we are to God the aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing. 2 Corinthians 2:14-15
There are two words in these verses that should catch our attention, the words "fragrance" and "aroma." Isn't it interesting that Paul uses words that relate to our sense of smell to describe how we should be seen by others (or smelledby others)? Most of us notice when a person passes by wearing cologne or perfume, especially when it is a strong scent. There are certain fragrances that evoke memories in us. The smell of spices and evergreen are most common at Christmas. Floral smells hint of springtime. And even someone's scent (good or bad) stirs emotions within us if we relate that fragrance to a particular time or event in our lives.
As Christians, Paul is saying that we, too, have a scent about us —"the aroma of Christ." The origin of the word "aroma" brings us back to Old Testament times when the sacrificial offerings of burning animal flesh were common. Our lives as Christians are offered as that living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God (Romans 12:1). As we live for Christ (and are willing to die to ourselves), we become a sweet-smelling aroma to God. Not by our good works, but because of the offerings and sacrifices we are willing to make in our daily lives. But we live in a world of indulgence to self, not sacrifice. How can we be the fragrance of Christ in the world today?
The first step is in being aware of who you are in Christ. As a believer, you represent Him wherever you go and whatever you do. What does that look like in real life? Maybe by forgiving someone who has hurt you. Maybe by giving up something you want just to bless someone else. The root of sacrifice and unselfishness goes back to love. It is the love of Christ in us and through us that leaves that sweet aroma on others.
Take time today and think about the fragrance you are wearing. Put it in the perspective of being an offering and a sacrifice unto the Lord for the sake of others. What better role model for us than the apostle Paul? Of course, the ultimate sacrifice was given through God's only Son, Jesus Christ, and it is now up to us to make that sacrifice known to the world. Ask the Lord today to help you be the aroma of Christ everywhere you go. May you leave a scent of love on everyone that you pass.
Our mission is to evangelize the lost and awaken the saved to live empowered lives by the Work of God and His Holy Spirit. Daily Disciples Ministries makes a difference for the kingdom of God by teaching and training believers how to be in God's Word, how to pray and how to walk with Jesus every day, as His daily disciple.
Daily Disciples Ministries, Inc.

----------------------
May 8
Today's Reading: Proverbs 3-5; 2 Corinthians 1
Today's Thoughts: Direct My Paths
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths. Proverbs 3:5-6
My mom and dad are dealing with a huge plumbing problem. The main pipe that carries their hot water from the garage to the kitchen broke underneath the cement slab. They knew something was wrong when their tile floor was warming their feet. Because we have earthquake building codes, the plumbers cannot fix the problem by digging down, but only by rerouting the pipe through the ceilings. This has caused a major upheaval to their home. The laundry room, downstairs bathroom, family room, kitchen, dining room and even the closet where they store all the Christmas decorations have been affected. All of their personal belongings are out of the cabinets and closets, and are on the couches, tables and floor. Then there are the new large holes in the ceilings and closets with dust from the holes everywhere. The plumbers have tried to be considerate by placing plastic over their personal belongings and a walkway runner on the rugs, but with all the work and workers, it is impossible to keep the décor a priority.
Well, my mother has handled it very well, all things considered but…there are times she finds herself overwhelmed with the situation. She has continued to ask the Lord to help her and to remain peaceful through it all (including the cold showers for days). God has been so faithful to hear her prayers. The other night, she went to bed praying about the pipes and when she woke up, she heard this in her mind:
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your
own understanding. In all your ways, acknowledge Him,
And He shall redirect your pipes. Proverbs 3:5-6
(bold words are paraphrased)
The Word of God is active and living. If we put His Word into our minds and meditate on it, God has the ability to bring it back in each and every situation to maintain peace in your life. God is so good to us. He hears every prayer and cares about every circumstance. Trust in Him and He will direct your paths, and even your pipes, if you include Him.
Our mission is to evangelize the lost and awaken the saved to live empowered lives by the Work of God and His Holy Spirit. Daily Disciples Ministries makes a difference for the kingdom of God by teaching and training believers how to be in God's Word, how to pray and how to walk with Jesus every day, as His daily disciple.
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Re: Daily Disciples

Post  Admin on Sun 08 May 2011, 10:10 am

May 7
Today's Reading: Proverbs 1-2; 1 Corinthians 16
Today's Thoughts: Looking for God’s Wisdom
So that you incline your ear to wisdom, and apply your heart to understanding; yes, if you cry out for discernment, and lift up your voice for understanding, if you seek her as silver, and search for her as for hidden treasures; then you will understand the fear of the Lord, and find the knowledge of God. For the Lord gives wisdom; from His mouth come knowledge and understanding; He stores up sound wisdom for the upright; He is a shield to those who walk uprightly; He guards the paths of justice, and preserves the way of His saints. Then you will understand righteousness and justice, equity and every good path. Proverbs 2:2-9
As King David was facing his death, he appointed his son, Solomon, as the new king of Israel. In the beginning of King Solomon’s reign, the Lord spoke to Solomon in a dream and said: "Ask! What shall I give you?" (1 Kings 3: 5) His reply greatly pleased the Lord, as he asked for wisdom and discernment so that he could rightly judge God's people. The Lord gave Solomon such an abundance of wisdom that he became famous throughout Israel and other lands, attracting the attention of many who came just to hear his wisdom. His own people feared and respected Solomon because of the power of his words.
The Proverbs are filled with Solomon's nuggets of wisdom, which are still applicable for our lives today. However, this man of wisdom begins this book of wisdom by instructing us to seek for wisdom, knowledge and understanding. Solomon tells us to "seek her as silver, and search for her as for hidden treasures." He obviously was thankful that he had the right answer when God asked him years earlier, “What shall I give you?”
We need to get in the habit of asking the Lord for wisdom, knowledge and understanding every day. The New Testament writer, James, also instructs us to ask for wisdom as he says in Chapter 1 verse 5, “if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God who gives to all liberally and without reproach and it will be given to him.” In other ways, anyone can ask for wisdom at any time and the Lord will give it liberally regardless of our shortcomings and faults. Asking for wisdom is a gift as much as begin the recipient of the wisdom that He gives. There are no prerequisites or strings attached. There will be tangible fruit in your life as you begin to understand things from a different perspective. Certain habits will break and your own words will inspire you as they bring edification and counsel to others.
Oh Lord, please give me wisdom, knowledge and understanding today so I can think Your thoughts as You direct my words, hands and feet.
Our mission is to evangelize the lost and awaken the saved to live empowered lives by the Work of God and His Holy Spirit. Daily Disciples Ministries makes a difference for the kingdom of God by teaching and training believers how to be in God's Word, how to pray and how to walk with Jesus every day, as His daily disciple.
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Re: Daily Disciples

Post  Admin on Fri 06 May 2011, 2:19 pm

May 6
Today's Reading: Psalm 148-150; 1 Corinthians 15:29-58
Today's Thoughts: Praise Him and Find Victory
Praise Him for His might acts; Praise Him according to His excellent greatness! Let everything that has breath praise the Lord. Praise the Lord! Psalm 150:2, 6
As we meet and talk with women, we often hear of their struggles, especially in their own thoughts. They feel unworthy to be serving the Lord. Thoughts like, "Who are you to be doing this?" or "Why are you working on this—someone else could do it better?" are common components of mental attacks. These thoughts then trigger certain emotions and the next thing for women is a pit of depression and hopelessness, just what the enemy had planned. The enemy wants you to feel so condemned and depressed that you quit or are too demoralized to minister effectively and powerfully.
Some Christians recognize that these types of thoughts are not of the Lord but they do not know how to stop them. Some of us quote verses, rebuke the devil, and attempt to reason our way out of it with logical comebacks, but still have no real victory. Instead of fighting back, we begin to justify the bad thoughts, thinking that maybe these self-condemning behaviors are from the Lord to keep us humble. Wrong!
Jesus came to give us life to the fullest. He wants us to share in His joy, not wallow in our flesh. We are sinners. We are unworthy to do anything to please God. We are to love Him and to worship Him. Our faith is the only way to please God. It is not for us to dwell on our unworthiness but to praise Him for His willingness to save us.
How can we change this process? Start praising the Lord! Put on praise music, read the psalms aloud (as if you wrote them to the Lord) and worship the Lord. The key is to get our eyes off ourselves and focus on Him. He is worthy and by His blood that cleanses us, we can do all things through Christ, even change those negative thoughts.
Our mission is to evangelize the lost and awaken the saved to live empowered lives by the Work of God and His Holy Spirit. Daily Disciples Ministries makes a difference for the kingdom of God by teaching and training believers how to be in God's Word, how to pray and how to walk with Jesus every day, as His daily disciple.
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Re: Daily Disciples

Post  Admin on Thu 05 May 2011, 9:53 am

May 5
Today’s Reading: Psalm 146-147; 1 Corinthians 15:1-28
Today’s Thoughts: Hold Fast
Moreover, brethren, I declare to you the gospel that I preached to you, which also, you received and in which you stand, by which also you are saved, if you hold fast that word which I preached to you--unless you believed in vain. 1 Corinthians 15:1-2
One day, I spent time with a patient who had just been diagnosed the day before with breast cancer that had spread to her brain, liver and lungs. She was a young woman in her forties. I met her on the Oncology Unit in the hospital where doctors were just beginning a treatment plan. This patient seemed to have a peace. She spoke to me about her signs and symptoms that led up to this diagnosis; she was honest with her emotions and heart’s desires to get better. When I had asked her what her source of strength was during this time, she told me that over 300 people were praying for her and that she had wonderful family members and friends to see her through this difficult time. As the conversation continued, I asked her if she had the assurance of her salvation. I asked her if she had ever accepted Jesus Christ as her personal Lord and Savior. Her answer was quick and confident as she said, “I don’t need to do that because my father is a minister. I have the church’s support.” My heart was grieved for there aren’t any grandchildren in heaven. God wants to adopt sons and daughters into His Kingdom. God desires to personally raise each one of us, to call us each by name and for His kids to call back to Him, “Daddy,” knowing that His arm isn’t too short too save or ear too dull to hear the cry of His own children.
Becoming a child of God and receiving the assurance that you are His child is so easy. However, we resist so hard. In 1 Corinthians 15, Paul lays down the basics of salvation again. A child of God accepts that Jesus came to earth, fully God and fully man, and that He died on a cross for our sins, He was buried and rose from the dead three days later. Jesus is the way, the truth and the life and no one comes to the Father but by Him. His death on the cross allowed sinful man to have a relationship with a Holy God. His resurrection gives us the power to live this earthly life for His purposes, instead of our own. Romans 10:9-13 says, “that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth, confession is made unto salvation.” If you want to be sure that you have come to know the Lord Jesus in a personal way, pray this prayer: Lord Jesus, I want to know You personally. Thank You for dying on the cross for my sins and forgiving me. I want you to come into my heart and take control of my life. I want to live for You as I believe You died for me. Thank You for hearing my prayer. I want Your Spirit to fill me.
Our mission is to evangelize the lost and awaken the saved to live empowered lives by the Work of God and His Holy Spirit. Daily Disciples Ministries makes a difference for the kingdom of God by teaching and training believers how to be in God's Word, how to pray and how to walk with Jesus every day, as His daily disciple.
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Re: Daily Disciples

Post  Admin on Wed 04 May 2011, 5:34 pm

May 4

Today’s Reading: Psalm 137-139; 1 Corinthians 13

Today’s Thoughts: Admit Your Fears

Whenever I am afraid, I will trust in You. Psalm 56:3

Is it hard for you to admit that you are afraid or fearful of something? Think of the circumstances and people that occupy your mind during the day. Are your thoughts filled with peace or fear? It is difficult to admit as Christians that we are fearful. For some reason we believe that the presence of fear disqualifies the strength of our faith. But it is foolish to believe that Christians are not fearful. Every stage we enter in our walk with the Lord has to shake our faith in order for us to understand the seriousness of the choices at hand. I love the Word of God, the Lord allows us to be honest about our fears and then helps us work through them as we learn from the examples of others as described in His Word.

When reading Psalm 56, we learn that David wrote this Psalm. From what we know about David, we know a boy who could slay a lion and a bear to protect his sheep. Then we know him as a man who was a mighty warrior and wise king. And yet, God allows us to see into this man’s heart and we find that David was a lot like us, struggling with fears at times. But what makes David, “a man after God’s own heart,” was that he knew what to do about his fears. Those fears did not separate him from the Lord or hinder his faith. David had faith amidst the fears. How?

First, David made a conscious effort in prayer to admit to God that he was fearful. As believers, we often tend to not include the Lord in our fears, knowing that we shouldn’t be "fearing" anything but Him. Not David, he understood that the Lord sees and knows all things about us. We can’t hide from the Lord, so why pretend He doesn’t know how we are feeling?

Next, David confidently told the Lord that he chose to trust in Him about those fearful things. So now, think of those things again that are fear inducing in your life. Talk to the Lord about them. Tell Him everything you are thinking. Now, tell the Lord that you choose to trust Him with those very things. You might have to tell Him over and over, but in time, you will train yourself to be like David…a man after God’s own heart.

Our mission is to evangelize the lost and awaken the saved to live empowered lives by the Work of God and His Holy Spirit. Daily Disciples Ministries makes a difference for the kingdom of God by teaching and training believers how to be in God's Word, how to pray and how to walk with Jesus every day, as His daily disciple.
Daily Disciples Ministries, Inc.



May 3

Today’s Reading: Psalm 140-142; 1 Corinthians 14:1-20

Today’s Thoughts: Does Your Heart Burn?

Then their eyes were opened and they knew Him; and He vanished from their sight. And they said to one another, "Did not our heart burn within us while He talked with us on the road, and while He opened the Scriptures to us?" Luke 24:31-32

One of my favorite stories in the New Testament is the story of the two on the road to Emmaus. They had heard the account from the women who had gone to the tomb and found it empty. Jesus was gone. His body was not in the tomb. All of their hopes for a king were gone as well. But as they walked and discussed all that had happened, Jesus showed up. Jesus began to question them about what had happened, as they were completely unaware of Whom they were talking to. After breaking bread with them, Jesus vanished and then they knew. Their eyes had been opened to the spiritual realm and they got it. Their hearts burned within them as Jesus talked to them. They understood His Word. The Scriptures came alive to them, just as, "the Word became flesh and dwelt among them" (John 1:14).

Has your heart ever burned within you as if Jesus were speaking to you personally? Jesus left us His Word and His Holy Spirit. Through the Holy Spirit living within our hearts, we can discern spiritual things, and it is only through the Holy Spirit that we can comprehend the Word of God. When we fall in love with His Word, we have fallen in love with Him. We find ourselves unable to get enough of His presence. We just want more of Jesus. It is then that we begin to have our eyes truly opened to know Him personally.

Praise God today that we do not have to hope for an encounter with Jesus. If we have accepted Him into our hearts as our Savior, then we have His Spirit living within us. Through reading and studying the Bible, we can understand His ways and grow in the knowledge of Him. Our lives will change, day by day, from glory to glory. Read Luke chapter 24 today as part of a further study in the Word. Ask the Lord to open your mind to understand the Scriptures. Maybe you will find your heart burning within you, before you are done.

Our mission is to evangelize the lost and awaken the saved to live empowered lives by the Work of God and His Holy Spirit. Daily Disciples Ministries makes a difference for the kingdom of God by teaching and training believers how to be in God's Word, how to pray and how to walk with Jesus every day, as His daily disciple.
Daily Disciples Ministries, Inc.
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Re: Daily Disciples

Post  Admin on Tue 03 May 2011, 12:34 pm


May 2

Today’s Readings: Psalm 137-139; 1 Corinthians 13

Today’s Thoughts: You are Important to God

How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God! How great is the sum of them! If I should count them, they would be more in number than the sand; When I awake, I am still with You. Psalm 139:17-18

How many of us really believe that the God of the universe is thinking kind thoughts about us? Doesn’t He have more important things to think about? How can He really care about us and be all that this verse says? The key point for us is to realize that God considers us to be veryimportant to Him. If we stop for a moment and consider some of the basics of what the Bible teaches, we may better understand the truth of these verses.

Over and over, the Bible is filled with verses of truth that describe His love for us. John 3:16 tells us that, “God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son…” for us. Jesus came to earth, fully man and fully God, to give His life for our sins so that we may know Him personally. As hard as it may be to believe, God loves us so much that all He wants is to be with us; the God of the universe wants a personal relationship with you and me. That is why He thinks about us so much. That is why He never leaves us, even as we sleep. He wants us to know that He is still with us when we wake up.

My dog wakes me up each morning, sometimes earlier than I like. Now, my dog does not have to be let out, he has his own doggy door. He is not hungry or thirsty. He just wants to be with me. He wants to be petted and loved on, even for a few minutes until I am fully awake and then he goes back to sleep. As I wake up, I know that the Lord wants me up too. He has been thinking about me all night, watching over me and waiting on me to get up and be with Him. Mornings spent with the Lord are precious, and it is in those moments that He lets me know just how much He loves me. The Lord does not need anything from me, but He wants my attention and my love, and He gives me so much more in return.

Today, stop and give some time and attention to the Lord. Tell Him you love Him. Thank Him for His thoughts of you and for always being with you. And when in doubt, read the full chapter of Psalm 139…you will be blessed.

Our mission is to evangelize the lost and awaken the saved to live empowered lives by the Work of God and His Holy Spirit. Daily Disciples Ministries makes a difference for the kingdom of God by teaching and training believers how to be in God's Word, how to pray and how to walk with Jesus every day, as His daily disciple.
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Re: Daily Disciples

Post  Admin on Mon 02 May 2011, 9:18 am

May 1

Today's Reading: Psalm 135-136; 1 Corinthians 12

Today's Thoughts: Jesus Lives

They asked her, "Woman, why are you crying?" "They have taken my Lord away," she said, "and I don't know where they have put him." At this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not realize that it was Jesus. "Woman," he said, "why are you crying? Who is it you are looking for?" Thinking he was the gardener, she said, "Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will get him." Jesus said to her, "Mary." She turned toward him and cried out in Aramaic, "Rabboni!" (which means Teacher) John 20:13-16

Can anyone take the Lord away from us? Mary thought so. Her heart was broken, her Lord was dead and now she thought His body had been taken away. Mary cried deeply, thinking that someone could have taken the only part left of Him away from her. At this point, she did not even notice that angels were speaking to her. She just wanted Jesus back. Even when Jesus was standing (literally) behind her, Mary thought He was the gardener. In her loyalty and despite her depression, Mary was willing to do whatever it would take to "get Him" back.

Her devotion is sincere but how can she serve a dead God? What kind of Lord would we have if others could change His position or steal His body? What kind of God would we serve if we have the ability to lose or misplace Him? That kind of god puts the burden on us, regardless of how devoted or sincere we may be. Thank the Lord Jesus that He arose from the grave. We do not worship a dead god but a living Lord. We worship a God who has placed all the burdens on Himself. We do not have to find Him because He never loses us. And God promises that if we seek Him, we will find Him as He comes to us. We are never lost from His sight. We may not see Him but He is always there, even sometimes from behind.

I love the verse in Isaiah 30:21 that says, "Your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, 'This isthe way, walk in it,' Whenever you turn to the right hand Or whenever you turn to the left." God does lead us from behind at times and we can feel that we have lost Him. But like Mary in John 20:16, when Jesus calls your name even from behind, you will recognize His voice. Remember to keep seeking Him and desiring to be with Him even if He seems to be missing. You have not lost Him because He can never lose you. He conquered death on a cross and rose again. Jesus is the Resurrection and the Life and He is always with us, leading us in every step.

Our mission is to evangelize the lost and awaken the saved to live empowered lives by the Work of God and His Holy Spirit. Daily Disciples Ministries makes a difference for the kingdom of God by teaching and training believers how to be in God's Word, how to pray and how to walk with Jesus every day, as His daily disciple.
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Re: Daily Disciples

Post  Admin on Sat 30 Apr 2011, 11:10 am

April 30
Today's Reading: 1 Kings 8-9; Luke 21:1-19
Today's Thoughts: God Gives the Increase
So then neither he who plants is anything, nor he who waters, but God who gives the increase. Now he who plants and he who waters are one, and each one will receive his own reward according to his own labor. 1 Corinthians 3:7-8
As Christians, we have different gifts that produce different fruit for God's work. We can accept this in Scripture but we question why some Christians are more successful in ministry than others, such as when one's church is so much larger than another's. We tend to look at the "successful person" and try to pattern ourselves to be like that person, instead of keeping our focus on the Lord. Paul's point emphasizes the fact that ultimately God is the reason for any of our success.
Paul is making a piercing statement that should penetrate each of us right into the depths of our heart. The focus of ministry needs to be about God—period. Without God, there is no increase, no success, and no value to our work. Without God, there would be no gifts, skills, or fruits. Without God, there would be no us. Because of God, one person is given certain talents while someone else is given the complement to those gifts, both designed by God to fulfill His purpose only (1 Corinthians 12:11). In these verses, Paul is planting while Apollos is watering, both chosen by God to perform His service.
In Matthew 15:13 Jesus says, "Every plant which My heavenly Father has not planted will be uprooted." Unless God is our Farmer, nothing that we plant will ever bear fruit. Most of the time, however, we forge ahead with the planting and then ask God to bless our work with good fruit. Jesus says that the Father will not allow those plants to remain; He will remove them completely.
How much time do we waste in trying to complete our plans, meet our standards, control our progress, and make our deadlines? How do you personally plant and water specific areas of your life? Is God your Farmer? If you are feeling frustrated, fatigued, and frazzled, comparing yourself to others, then you are missing what God has for you. You must realize that He has given you the talents and skills to plant and water, but all for His purposes and to His glory. Without Him, there will be no growth and no success.
Our mission is to evangelize the lost and awaken the saved to live empowered lives by the Work of God and His Holy Spirit. Daily Disciples Ministries makes a difference for the kingdom of God by teaching and training believers how to be in God's Word, how to pray and how to walk with Jesus every day, as His daily disciple.
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April 29
Today’s Reading: 1 Kings 6-7; Luke 20:27-47
Your Thoughts on Today’s Passage: A Loyal Friend
But Ruth said: "Entreat me not to leave you, Or to turn back from following after you; For wherever you go, I will go; And wherever you lodge, I will lodge; Your people shall be my people, And your God, my God. Where you die, I will die, And there will I be buried. The Lord do so to me, and more also, If anything but death parts you and me." Ruth 1:16-17
Naomi had two sons who married Moabite women. After Naomi’s husband and sons died, she decided to leave Moab and return home to Bethlehem. She told her daughters-in-law to stay behind and to go back to their own homes. One stayed but the other one, Ruth, refused to leave Naomi. Ruth’s reply to Naomi’s repeated attempts to get her to stay behind is written in today’s verses. Her words speak for themselves. Commitment, love and devotion are exhibited through Ruth’s pledge to go with Naomi.
Ruth settled in Bethlehem and married an Israelite named Boaz. She had a son who would be the grandfather of King David. Her determination to not give up on Naomi was no doubt part of God’s plan for Ruth. She had a purpose in God’s kingdom as she was chosen by God to be in the lineage of Jesus Christ. Many people today use the book of Ruth as a study on love, commitment and friendship.
How do you compare to Ruth in loyalty to your friends and family? Are you as devoted to Jesus as she was to her mother-in-law? Or are you more easily swayed by others than you think? Friendship at any level requires commitment and devotion, but especially in our friendship with Jesus. We express our love for Christ as we express our love for His people. He takes our friendships very seriously. Do we? If you have never read the book of Ruth, take time today and read through the four short chapters. You will be blessed and touched by her story and by God’s sovereignty in all that happens here on earth. And, remember to be a loyal friend to those closest to you.
Our mission is to evangelize the lost and awaken the saved to live empowered lives by the Work of God and His Holy Spirit. Daily Disciples Ministries makes a difference for the kingdom of God by teaching and training believers how to be in God's Word, how to pray and how to walk with Jesus every day, as His daily disciple.
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Re: Daily Disciples

Post  Admin on Thu 28 Apr 2011, 11:35 am

April 27
Today's Reading: 1 Kings 1-2; Luke 19:28-48
Today's Thoughts: Back to Egypt?
Woe to those who go down to Egypt for help, And rely on horses, Who trust in chariots because they are many, And in horsemen because they are very strong, But who do not look to the Holy One of Israel, Nor seek the Lord! Isaiah 31:1
A reference to going back to Egypt is made often in the Old Testament. The Israelites spent over 400 years in Egypt. Much of their time in Egypt consisted of hard labor and enslavement. They cried out to God and He answered their cries. The book of Exodus describes their departure from this life of bondage as Moses led the way. But, as soon as they encountered trials on their journey, the people were quick to want to go back to Egypt and return to their old way of life. Why would anyone want to go back to a life that was filled with bondage and suffering? Because they at least knew what to expect and sometimes, that is more comforting than having to face the uncertain future.
Isaiah 31 says, “Woe to those who go down to Egypt” and who are looking for help in places outside of the Lord. The same is true for us today. As Christians, we have God’s Holy Spirit who is our Helper and our Comforter. Trials and hard times are inevitable in our lives because we live in a fallen world that brings sorrows and pains. Though we will be tempted at times to give up and to go back to our familiar territories, we must press on towards the upward call of Christ Jesus. Do not put your trust in the strength of men or money or worldly power, but put your trust in the Lord. Turn your eyes to Jesus and He will lead the way.
Our mission is to evangelize the lost and awaken the saved to live empowered lives by the Work of God and His Holy Spirit. Daily Disciples Ministries makes a difference for the kingdom of God by teaching and training believers how to be in God's Word, how to pray and how to walk with Jesus every day, as His daily disciple.
Daily Disciples Ministries, Inc.
April 28
Today's Reading: 1 Kings 3-5; Luke 20:1-26
Today's Thoughts: The Good Soil
"And the one on whom seed was sown on the good soil, this is the man who hears the word and understands it; who indeed bears fruit, and brings forth, some a hundredfold, some sixty, and some thirty." Matthew 13:23
Gardening is definitely not a hobby for those of us who want nice looking finger nails. After planting flowers for a few hours, my appearance seemed to reflect gardening as a contact sport. I had dirt everywhere. I spent most of my time digging and scrapping and hoeing and massaging the dirt. Placing the flowers in the ground was the easy part.
I was talking to my daughter while planting. I said to her, “Jesus talks about seeds falling on good soil or dirt. What do you think it takes to recognize good dirt over bad dirt?” She said, “Well, I think good dirt is darker than bad dirt. It would be darker because it should be wetter than bad dirt.” Her observation was very good. The areas that we planted with moister soil did have a darker color because the sprinklers covered that area better. We also found healthier plants in the darker dirt.
I also thought about this spiritually. As we acknowledge our sinfulness, we understand the darkness of our hearts. It is then through the moistening of the Holy Spirit to wet our hearts to receive Jesus as our Savior, that we are redeemed from our sin. That kind of soil is then ready for the Lord to plant His Words in our hearts to bring forth flowers or fruits of righteousness in His time.
The first step is the preparation of the soil. Praise God that He is willing to get His hands dirty for us! We might not like seeing how dark the dirt is but it is in understanding our sinful state that Jesus can do a beautiful work in the end. Remember, seed…time… and harvest!
Our mission is to evangelize the lost and awaken the saved to live empowered lives by the Work of God and His Holy Spirit. Daily Disciples Ministries makes a difference for the kingdom of God by teaching and training believers how to be in God's Word, how to pray and how to walk with Jesus every day, as His daily disciple.
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Re: Daily Disciples

Post  Admin on Tue 26 Apr 2011, 11:41 am

April 26
Today's Reading: 2 Samuel 23-24; Luke 19:1-27
Today's Thoughts: Careful in Counsel
They continually say to those who despise Me, 'The Lord has said, "You shall have peace" '; And to everyone who walks according to the dictates of his own heart, they say, 'No evil shall come upon you.' "For who has stood in the counsel of the Lord, And has perceived and heard His word? Who has marked His word and heard it? Jeremiah 23:17-18
Jeremiah was a prophet called by the Lord to give His message to the people. Unfortunately, the message from God was not good news. The Lord told the people of their impending destruction and captivity. His words were severe and too hard for them to accept. In contrast to Jeremiah's prophecies, others proclaiming to be prophets told the people not to fear, that they would have peace. These false prophets used the Lord's name to declare their worthless predictions, and the people chose to believe the false prophets instead of Jeremiah. But these so-called prophets had no relationship or counsel with the Lord God Almighty. They would be held accountable before the Lord for their actions as they blatantly deceived the people.
This message applies to us today as well, especially when we speak on behalf of the Lord. We must be sure that our counsel or encouragement to others has been prayerfully taken before the Lord. We must stand in the counsel of the Lord and hear from Him before we offer counsel or advice to anyone else. This message is not only critical to those of us in ministry roles, but also true for any Christian who truly desires to help others. We must realize our responsibility before the Lord. When someone is hurting while going through difficult trials, our human response is to comfort and encourage them. But we also must be in prayer for them and ask the Lord to give us His wisdom in how to help. If we are not standing before the Lord, then our words may give false hopes or assurances that are not of the Lord. They could end up placing their hope on our words instead of God's Word.
Regardless of how little or often you counsel others, make sure you heed the words of these verses and take everything to the Lord first. Whether in ministry or other roles, our hearts as Christians will desire to help others, but we must always recognize our inadequacies. Only God knows what He is doing with people and we must walk with Him daily to know how He wants to use us to help them. If we are not careful, just as in Jeremiah's day, we can do far greater harm by offering hope and assurances that are not of the Lord. Take everything to Him in prayer and ask Him to give you Scriptures for any counsel you may give. Always stand on the Word of God. And when in doubt, pray for the self-control to listen instead of speaking.
Our mission is to evangelize the lost and awaken the saved to live empowered lives by the Work of God and His Holy Spirit. Daily Disciples Ministries makes a difference for the kingdom of God by teaching and training believers how to be in God's Word, how to pray and how to walk with Jesus every day, as His daily disciple.
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Re: Daily Disciples

Post  Admin on Mon 25 Apr 2011, 1:05 pm

April 25
Today's Reading: 2 Samuel 21-22; Luke 18:24-43
Today's Thoughts: Emotions
For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life. And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart. Galatians 6:8-9
To bear fruit in horrific circumstances takes the ability to separate ourselves from those circumstances. We have to learn to pull ourselves out of the situation to see it from God's perspective, instead of our own. It takes discipline and self-control to live for the Lord despite the situations and events in our lives. Many times, I have had to say, "Ok, God is powerful and has the ability to change these circumstances if needed. God is wise and has the ability to give me the wisdom to deal with these circumstances if needed. God is loving and knows what I need better than I do." When I can apply these three attributes of God: powerful, wise and loving, to my circumstances, I am able to trust God in all situations and events and thus, able to bear fruit in spite of them.
The same thing is true for our emotions. The way we feel can hinder us from doing the will of God and bearing fruit. Our emotions can clearly impact our actions. Here are some examples:
•If we do not feel like cleaning the house, we will not do it even if it needs to be done.
•If we do not feel like being nice today, we will not be nice even though the consequences will linger beyond the day.
•If we are led by our emotions, we will do or not do what we feel like doing. But in order to bear fruit and stay in the will of God, we need to be able to separate ourselves from our feelings and do what God has called us to do in spite of our selves.
To pull ourselves out from the circumstances, we can remind ourselves of the attributes of God. To pull ourselves out from our emotions, we need to be in the Word of God. We have to claim verses as promises to keep us focused on doing things that please Him, even if it does not please our emotions at the time. It is in praying for self-control to maintain a steadfast life that brings Him glory. Every day and every decision counts. Choices we make today matter forever. Keep sowing those seeds of righteousness and in time, you will reap a healthy harvest.
Our mission is to evangelize the lost and awaken the saved to live empowered lives by the Work of God and His Holy Spirit. Daily Disciples Ministries makes a difference for the kingdom of God by teaching and training believers how to be in God's Word, how to pray and how to walk with Jesus every day, as His daily disciple.
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Re: Daily Disciples

Post  Admin on Sun 24 Apr 2011, 11:21 pm


April 24

Today's Reading: 2 Samuel 19-20; Luke 18:1-23

Today's Thoughts: Seasonal Changes

But his delight is in the law of the Lord, and in His law he meditates day and night. He will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in its season, And its leaf does not wither; And in whatever he does, he prospers.

Psalm 1:2-3

My aunt came from the east coast to visit. Our days were filled with theme parks, shopping malls, and numerous activities. One evening, as we were planning for the next day, she said, "Can't we see what the weather does and then decide?" That question took me by surprise. Those of us living in Southern California tend to not factor in the weather until we actually see it raining. Why? Because there are few seasonal changes here. Even when the weather forecaster predicts rain, wind patterns change frequently and we often do not get the predicted rain or inclement weather.

Her statement, however, had greater implications. She was tired and ready to slow down and change the pace. On the east coast, weather is a natural boundary that helps adjust schedules and lifestyles. Although the sunny skies are an advantage for most daily events and plans, Southern Californians have to make a conscious effort to rest and slow down. God knows that we need cycles of rest as much as periods of productivity. He factors into our lives spiritual seasons of sunny skies, rainy days, snowed in days and even some hurricanes, tornados and thunderstorms. Why? Because in each of these events, God wants to show Himself faithful and build our faith to trust in Him.

Make a commitment to understand the ways of the Lord. If every day were perfect, there would be no dependency on the Lord or desire to be with God in heaven. Factor in time to spend with the Lord before your day starts. He will prepare you for the weather changes in your spiritual life for the day. The Lord's desire for you is to be stable and consistent, even when the seasons are not. By considering God in your day, you will find peace and joy regardless of what the weather brings.

Our mission is to evangelize the lost and awaken the saved to live empowered lives by the Work of God and His Holy Spirit. Daily Disciples Ministries makes a difference for the kingdom of God by teaching and training believers how to be in God's Word, how to pray and how to walk with Jesus every day, as His daily disciple.
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Re: Daily Disciples

Post  Admin on Sat 23 Apr 2011, 11:54 am

April 23

Today's Reading: 2 Samuel 16-18; Luke 17:20-37

Today's Thoughts: Nothing Can Separate Us From His Love

For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:38-39

How do you respond to sudden changes in circumstances that did not result to your advantage? Examples such as when your car suddenly breaks down, your vacation leave does not get approved, your kids get sick the day you had something planned or you lose your cell phone. I have found that there are two main reactions we can have:

God, I am so sorry. I will seek You now. What do You want from me?

God, what did I do wrong? I thought You loved me.

Both cover each end of the spectrum. If we don’t walk with the Lord daily, we blame the incident on ourselves and feel guilty. If we do walk with the Lord, we feel abandoned by Him and question His character.

Jesus told us that the rain falls on the just and the unjust alike, meaning that a change in circumstances can happen to all of us. However, the problem comes when we choose to lose our perspective of who God is in the process. God wants us to love Him and enjoy His fellowship. He never stops loving us. We can face any change in circumstance better if we include the Lord in the problem, instead of blaming Him for the problem. Next time something suddenly changes pray, “Lord, help me to stick with You through this and please cause this to work together for good.” Nothing can separate us from His love so we shouldn’t separate ourselves from Him.

Our mission is to evangelize the lost and awaken the saved to live empowered lives by the Work of God and His Holy Spirit. Daily Disciples Ministries makes a difference for the kingdom of God by teaching and training believers how to be in God's Word, how to pray and how to walk with Jesus every day, as His daily disciple.
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Re: Daily Disciples

Post  Admin on Fri 22 Apr 2011, 4:52 pm

April 22

Today's Reading: 2 Samuel 14-15; Luke 17:1-19

Today's Thoughts: Asking in Confidence

This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us-whatever we ask-we know that we have what we asked of him. 1 John 5:14-15

When we teach on prayer, we often use these verses as references. Regardless of the audience to whom we are speaking, almost everyone is familiar with these verses. In the gospels, Jesus tells us to "ask" for things. Matthew 7:7 says, "Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.” A few chapters later, Jesus says, "And whatever things you ask in prayer, believing, you will receive." (Matthew 21:22) When you study the gospels, you will notice that Jesus makes it clear that asking and believing go hand in hand. In other words: when we pray, we need to pray (or ask) in faith. John gives us a clearer picture of that faith by using the word "confidence" in how we approach God in prayer.

At a recent seminar on how to use a prayer journal, we discussed this word "confidence." How many of us come to the Lord in confidence? It opened an enlightening discussion about what confidence before the Lord really looks like and how can we have it. One of the many areas discussed was how confused we get over praying "according to his will." Many people feel that if they are not praying God's will, then they cannot approach Him in confidence. They try to figure out what God wants them to pray before they come to Him in prayer. That approach is confusing and can lead to misguided, fruitless prayers.

Then what does it mean to pray "according to his will?" How can we ever truly know God's will? Let's not put the cart before the horse; start with the basics of prayer. Start with asking. Go to the Lord in honesty and humility and tell Him where your heart is. Tell Him that you are not sure what His will may be for you but that you want to know. Tell Him that you are not sure what to pray but these are the things on your heart. Ask the Lord to help you pray in confidence and to approach His throne of grace with boldness (Hebrews 4:16). The Lord already knows your wants, needs and desires. He just wants you to come and fellowship with Him. Open your heart to Him honestly; do not try to package things before coming to Him. Just ask, and allow His Spirit to do the rest.

Our mission is to evangelize the lost and awaken the saved to live empowered lives by the Work of God and His Holy Spirit. Daily Disciples Ministries makes a difference for the kingdom of God by teaching and training believers how to be in God's Word, how to pray and how to walk with Jesus every day, as His daily disciple.
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Re: Daily Disciples

Post  Admin on Thu 21 Apr 2011, 11:34 am

April 21

Today's Reading: 2 Samuel 12-13; Luke 16

Today's Thoughts: Faithful with Little, Given Much

"Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much, and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much. So if you have not been trustworthy in handling worldly wealth, who will trust you with true riches? And if you have not been trustworthy with someone else's property, who will give you property of your own?” Luke 16:10-12

There is an ice cream man who has come to sell ice cream in my neighborhood for at least 8 years. His van is beat up with bald tires, poor paint, bumps and bruises on the exterior, well-worn and torn up seats inside, and a very loud stereo blasting the ice cream theme song. The music sings to “Do your ears hang low? Do they travel to and fro? Can you tie them in a knot? Can you tie them in a bow?” The song plays over and over, very loudly. And I can hear that song from blocks away. The ice cream man can barely speak English but has a great countenance and has smiled for 8 years, with the facial wrinkles to prove it.

My heart has broken for this man. I have told my children to go and buy ice cream to support him. It seems like a hard job for not too much in return, but his attitude is so good and he is so faithful to do his job well. Well, the other evening I went for a walk. I heard that familiar sound down the block. As I was walking by, to my surprise, the ice cream man got a brand new truck! It was the same man, same products, same advertisements on the side and the same song but a new truck. I was so happy for him.

God spoke to my heart while walking past the truck and explained something to me. When we receive the Holy Spirit in power, God uses the same person with the same personality and same body to be empowered in a whole new way. This man was faithful with little, so he has been given much (Luke 16:10). We too will receive more and more opportunities to be used by God in the power of the Holy Spirit if we are faithful with the smaller tasks He has given us. By being faithful in the little tasks, He can trust us with bigger ones. The choices we make in every day living matter to God. Are we smiling? Are we content? Are we faithful? Same person, same product, same advertisements but with a new power and passion that comes from a faithful heart. God is so good. But how we choose to live the every day job is up to us.

Our mission is to evangelize the lost and awaken the saved to live empowered lives by the Work of God and His Holy Spirit. Daily Disciples Ministries makes a difference for the kingdom of God by teaching and training believers how to be in God's Word, how to pray and how to walk with Jesus every day, as His daily disciple.
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Re: Daily Disciples

Post  Admin on Wed 20 Apr 2011, 11:32 am

April 19

Today’s Reading: 2 Samuel 6-8; Luke 15:1-10

Today’s Thoughts: Standing Firm

Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be men of courage; be strong. 1 Corinthians 16:13

A couple of months ago, I shared my faith with my neighbor. The conversation went well (from my point of view). The next thing I knew she hosted a luncheon and invited all the neighbors but me. After hearing about the event I felt sad and discouraged. I thought about what I had said to her and wondered if I had offended her. As I prayed, the Lord spoke to my heart and reminded me that persecution comes in various forms. I am responsible to speak as the Lord leads me; but I cannot always expect the outcome to be as positive as I would like. The Lord softened my heart to pray for her and to ask for another chance to speak to her again, not in anger for being left out of the party, but in simple love for her.

It is not always easy to be strong in the Lord and to stand firm and not give up. Are you standing firm? We have to learn to praise God and share Him and talk about Him, especially when times are calm. Today we have the Holy Spirit and we have free speech. If we cannot stand firm for Him now when times are easy, how will we handle persecution leading to death when times become tough? God will protect you in His way with His results. Nothing can separate you from the love of God. Do not allow your pain, pressures, problems or even persecution to separate you from pleasing Him.

Our mission is to evangelize the lost and awaken the saved to live empowered lives by the Work of God and His Holy Spirit. Daily Disciples Ministries makes a difference for the kingdom of God by teaching and training believers how to be in God's Word, how to pray and how to walk with Jesus every day, as His daily disciple.
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April 20

Today's Reading: 2 Samuel 9-11; Luke 15:11-32

Today's Thoughts: Ask Your Father

"The older brother became angry and refused to go in. So his father went out and pleaded with him. But he answered his father, 'Look! All these years I've been slaving for you and never disobeyed your orders. Yet you never gave me even a young goat so I could celebrate with my friends. But when this son of yours who has squandered your property with prostitutes comes home, you kill the fattened calf for him!' " “My son,” the father said, “you are always with me, and everything I have is yours.” Luke 15:28-31

I was thinking about the difference between the prodigal son versus his brother. One of the biggest differences between the two was in their ability to ask. The prodigal son asked for his share of the inheritance. His father graciously gave it to him. Not long after that, this younger son left his father’s house and “squandered the wealth in wild living” (as quoted in the NIV). The older son kept faithfully working and obeying. When the younger son came home with a heart of repentance, the older son was angry because he felt as if he had been mistreated. But really, their father would have been just as fair. One asked and the other didn’t.

Without concentrating on the poor choices that the younger son made, I have been meditating on the relationship of two boys, living under the same roof, and their dad. What gave one the ability to ask? We see the same thing occur in Christianity today. Some of us have learned to ask our Father for more blessings and fruits, willing to take more risks. While others are obedient but angry that nothing extra or miraculous is done for them.

Which are you? Many of us do not pray this way: “Lord, I know that I don’t deserve one thing for I am a sinner and Jesus has done everything for me already. But I ask for your blessings and for more of the Holy Spirit to do bigger and greater things. Not because of any works of righteousness do I ask, but because of Your mercy. Use me, empower me and fill me to be poured out as a blessing on others as You bless me. I want more Lord and You told me to ask.”

But when you learn to pray this way, miracles happen.

Our mission is to evangelize the lost and awaken the saved to live empowered lives by the Work of God and His Holy Spirit. Daily Disciples Ministries makes a difference for the kingdom of God by teaching and training believers how to be in God's Word, how to pray and how to walk with Jesus every day, as His daily disciple.
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Re: Daily Disciples

Post  Admin on Mon 18 Apr 2011, 11:23 pm

April 18

Today’s Readings: 2 Samuel 3-5; Luke 14:25-35

Today's thoughts: Count the Cost

For which of you, intending to build a tower, does not sit down first and count the cost, whether he has enough to finish it. Luke 14:28

How many of us sit down and count the cost as we undertake a project? I tend to forge ahead using whatever means necessary to get started, but I find that most of my efforts are front-loaded.

I started organizing my office recently and as I was going through various stacks and boxes, I realized there were some projects either in the early stages or only halfway finished. Even though these ideas were based on good intentions, somewhere along the way they lost momentum, or maybe I lost the momentum. Or maybe I never really sat down and counted the cost of what it would take to finish. In other words, I put more thought into starting the task instead of finishing it. My intentions were good but did I really consider all of the factors? Maybe not. And as a result I have yet to finish many things I had set out to do.

Jesus is warning us through this illustration to take some steps in the beginning that will ensure the right course to the completion. For us as Christians, we need to take these words seriously. Consistency and perseverance strengthen character and teach us how to be wise builders, whether in our homes, work, or church activities. The next verse says that for those who do not finish, they will be mocked and scoffed at by others. We need to realize that others are watching us and often, they are expecting our failures. The goal for us, regardless of the size and scope of the project, is to first, “sit down” and “count the cost.”

Do you have an idea for a new project? Have you considered the cost? Before jumping in head first, stop and sit down. Go to the Lord in sincere prayer asking for His guidance. Try to lay out the complete plans from start to finish and find confirmation for these plans in God’s word. If we truly seek His will and plans for us, He will show us what to do and how to finish them. So often, we are in much more of a hurry than God is. Be prepared to wait on Him. Finishing something we started is tremendously satisfying. Knowing that the Lord has led our steps through the entire task brings both earthly and spiritual fulfillment, because the journey means as much as the destination.

Our mission is to evangelize the lost and awaken the saved to live empowered lives by the Work of God and His Holy Spirit. Daily Disciples Ministries makes a difference for the kingdom of God by teaching and training believers how to be in God's Word, how to pray and how to walk with Jesus every day, as His daily disciple.
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Re: Daily Disciples

Post  Admin on Sun 17 Apr 2011, 9:17 am

April 17

Today's Reading: 2 Samuel 1-2; Luke 14:1-24

Today's Thoughts: Wisdom Cries Out

Wisdom calls aloud outside; She raises her voice in the open squares. She cries out in the chief concourses, At the openings of the gates in the city She speaks her words: "How long, you simple ones, will you love simplicity? For scorners delight in their scorning, And fools hate knowledge. Turn at my rebuke; Surely I will pour out my spirit on you; I will make my words known to you. Because I have called and you refused, I have stretched out my hand and no one regarded, Because you disdained all my counsel, And would have none of my rebuke, I also will laugh at your calamity; I will mock when your terror comes, When your terror comes like a storm, And your destruction comes like a whirlwind, When distress and anguish come upon you. "Then they will call on me, but I will not answer; They will seek me diligently, but they will not find me. Because they hated knowledge And did not choose the fear of the Lord, They would have none of my counsel And despised my every rebuke. Therefore they shall eat the fruit of their own way, And be filled to the full with their own fancies. For the turning away of the simple will slay them, And the complacency of fools will destroy them; But whoever listens to me will dwell safely, And will be secure, without fear of evil." Proverbs 1:20-33

I awoke one morning to a phone call from my mom, who lives in Tennessee. She called to tell me that she was okay, just in case I had seen the news and worried if she had survived. The night before, tornadoes had ripped through my family's small town and devastated a large portion of the area. I thanked God that she was okay, at least physically. Deeper though, I wondered how much more was headed our way – in terms of storms. Has anyone noticed that there seems to be a pattern of climate changes and weather related catastrophes? Are these "wake up" calls from God?

Today's verses speak about our attitude towards God's wisdom. Are we choosing to fear the Lord, or are we turning from Him? To fear the Lord is the beginning of wisdom (Proverbs 9:10). Today we need wisdom from above to live in this world as Christians. We must keep our eyes fixed upon Jesus so that nothing else matters. The tighter we cling to the world's goods, the harder it is to lose them. Storms will come in our lives; they will continue to challenge and test our hearts. Read the verses above and pray that your heart seeks the Lord first in all that you do. Ask Him to give you wisdom. Pray for "the fear of the Lord" to bring safety and protection in the midst of the storms. Do not stop praying.

Our mission is to evangelize the lost and awaken the saved to live empowered lives by the Work of God and His Holy Spirit. Daily Disciples Ministries makes a difference for the kingdom of God by teaching and training believers how to be in God's Word, how to pray and how to walk with Jesus every day, as His daily disciple.
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Re: Daily Disciples

Post  Admin on Sat 16 Apr 2011, 5:25 pm

April 16

Today's Reading: 1 Samuel 30-31; Luke 13:23-35

Today's Thoughts: God’s Eternal Promise

I set My rainbow in the cloud, and it shall be for the sign of the covenant between Me and the earth. It shall be, when I bring a cloud over the earth, that the rainbow shall be seen in the cloud; and I will remember My covenant which is between Me and you and every living creature of all flesh; the waters shall never again become a flood to destroy all flesh. Genesis 9:13-15

I was taught as a child that the rainbow symbolized God’s promise that He would never again destroy the earth with water. Every time it rained, I looked for the rainbow and I remembered God’s promise. Since moving to Southern California, I have seen fewer rainbows, mainly because it seldom rains here. But as the winter brings seasonal rains, I find myself once again searching the skies for that rainbow. What a joy to see that beautiful arc of colors when the sun breaks through the clouds!

As beautiful as the rainbow is, there is still nothing as beautiful as another symbol that Christians look toward. The symbol of a cross representing the cross of Christ. Just as the rainbow is a sign of God’s promise to not destroy the earth with water, the cross is a sign of God’s eternal promise of salvation. As Jesus, Son of God, died on a cross, the cross would forevermore represent God’s covenant of grace and love. The cross is a symbol reminding us that Jesus died for our sins. For those who believe in Jesus, the cross represents a covenant of everlasting life with God in heaven.

Rainbows and crosses are just two ways that God reminds us of His covenants, or promises, to us. What other ways does God remind you of His promises for your life? Be encouraged and hopeful because the Lord will never let you down, He will keep every promise. Sit down with His word and ask Him to show you His promises for you today. You might be surprised at the reminders that He will give you. And never let a rainbow or a cross go unnoticed…take a moment when you see them and give God praise for keeping His promises.

Our mission is to evangelize the lost and awaken the saved to live empowered lives by the Work of God and His Holy Spirit. Daily Disciples Ministries makes a difference for the kingdom of God by teaching and training believers how to be in God's Word, how to pray and how to walk with Jesus every day, as His daily disciple.
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Re: Daily Disciples

Post  Admin on Fri 15 Apr 2011, 3:43 pm

April 15

Today's Reading: 1 Samuel 27-29; Luke 13:1-22

Today's Thoughts: Do Not Fear

Only be strong and very courageous, that you may observe to do according to all the law which Moses My servant commanded you; do not turn from it to the right hand or to the left, that you may prosper wherever you go… Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go." Joshua 1:7, 9

Fear is a natural emotion that can be good when used for protection but debilitating when allowed to control us. Fear can hinder our judgment and potentially prevent us from moving forward to receive all that God has for us. We too are fearful of many things, from losing control to the unpredictability of our future. God was very straightforward and serious when counseling Joshua about fear.

Courage means "to show oneself strong" or "to be alert." Other words associated with courage are "agile, quick and energetic." We tend to associate those words as personality types, not godly traits. If God commands us to be strong and courageous, then He desires for all His children to have such traits. He also gives us the same promises He gave to Joshua. Three times, the Lord told Joshua to be strong and of good courage. He then commanded Joshua to obey, while promising him that He would go with him wherever he goes. And Joshua did.

God tells us the same thing and He has given us the same promises. Hebrews 13:5 says "I will never leave you nor forsake you." The Lord has also given us His Holy Spirit that lives within us – meaning that wherever we go God goes too. And He tells us that all authority has been given to us through Jesus. What excuse do we have? Are we as apt to be "agile, quick and energetic" as we saw Joshua to be? We have no excuse to not receive all that God has promised us as His children. We have no excuse to not fully believe His Word and study His Word and live out His will. God told Joshua to be strong and courageous in taking the inheritance as well as in living according to God's ways. It takes courage to live for God and strength to uphold His commands. Both strength and courage are needed, to have both His inheritance and obedience.

What is stopping you? If it is fear, ask Him to give you courage. If it is apathy, ask Him to motivate you to be diligent. Tell the Lord that you want all He has purposed in His heart for you. Tell Him that you do not want anything to separate you from His will, including yourself. Tell Him to help your unbelief and empower you to push forward. And remember, do not be afraid for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.

Our mission is to evangelize the lost and awaken the saved to live empowered lives by the Work of God and His Holy Spirit. Daily Disciples Ministries makes a difference for the kingdom of God by teaching and training believers how to be in God's Word, how to pray and how to walk with Jesus every day, as His daily disciple.
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Re: Daily Disciples

Post  Admin on Thu 14 Apr 2011, 10:17 am

April 14

Today's Reading: 1 Samuel 25-26; Luke 12:32-59

Today's Thoughts: Vengeance

David said to Abigail, "Praise be to the LORD, the God of Israel, who has sent you today to meet me. May you be blessed for your good judgment and for keeping me from bloodshed this day and from avenging myself with my own hands.” 1 Samuel 25:32-34

Have you ever found yourself in a situation in which you truly felt that you were being paid evil for good? You reached out to help someone or extend certain acts of kindness to your neighbor only to discover later that they would not do the same in return. Or, worse, that same person comes against you to cause you harm in some way. As humans, our response in the flesh tends to lean towards revenge. When they were in the fields together David and his men had protected Nabal's men who were tending their sheep. Even though David was in need of provisions, he never took anything from them. When David heard that Nabal was shearing his sheep, he sent messengers to ask Nabal for some food and whatever else he could spare. Nabal's response was harsh. No way would he going to help David. David became angry and, as a man of war, David immediately sought retaliation. But God intervened through Abigail, Nabal's wife, before David could act.

Abigail intervened on behalf of her husband, without Nabal knowing it. The sovereign Lord led Abigail to David to prevent him from taking steps that would lead to bloodshed. The Lord impressed upon Abigail the fore-knowledge that David would one day be king, and as king he would not want to bear such a burden of guilt. You see, God knows all things. God allows all things that happen to us. We may not understand why suffering seems to be such a permanent and prominent part of our lives, but God does. It is hard to deal with people who hurt us, especially when we have been kind to them. But God is with us through every situation, just as He was with David. Abigail was sent by God to speak words of wisdom to David. David was wise enough to listen. David gave his vengeance to the Lord and the Lord dealt with Nabal (he died a few days later).

Remember today that our Lord is sovereign. God is in control of all things. He knows every circumstance of our lives. The decision for us is how we will choose to respond to our circumstances, especially when we must deal with being hurt or betrayed by someone. Know that God will work in your life through every situation. If someone is sent to help you, ask the Lord to give you wisdom and discernment to listen to them. Maybe God has an Abigail in your life. Or, maybe you could be an Abigail to someone who seeks revenge. Regardless of where circumstances place us, our only answer is to seek the Lord's guidance and allow Him to handle it on our behalf.

Our mission is to evangelize the lost and awaken the saved to live empowered lives by the Work of God and His Holy Spirit. Daily Disciples Ministries makes a difference for the kingdom of God by teaching and training believers how to be in God's Word, how to pray and how to walk with Jesus every day, as His daily disciple.
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Re: Daily Disciples

Post  Admin on Wed 13 Apr 2011, 11:51 am

April 13

Today’s Verses: 1 Samuel 22-24; Luke 12:1-31

Today’s Thoughts: Every 15 Minutes Living Dead

For God so loved the world that He gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16

Every 15 Minutes is an intense two-day program designed to caution high school juniors and seniors against the dangers of drinking and driving. The program’s name was conceived from the statistic that every fifteen minutes someone in the United States dies in an alcohol related traffic accident. This program was initiated at the high school which my children attend. It did not only impact the high school students; however, I was really surprised by how it impacted me.

A private meeting was called for 25 high school students and their parents. After arriving and hearing the introductory announcements, the parents were told that our child was chosen to become one of “the living dead.” Our requirements for participation were to send in baby and current pictures, fill out an obituary, write a goodbye letter to your child, and attend the funeral service. Seriously, I glared at my son trying to hold myself together and said, “I don’t think I can do this.” Throughout the entire program, I definitely prayed more about the emotional components than the actual physical participation.

Looking back on the 24 hour period, I can tell you that the most challenging part for me was writing my son’s good bye letter.

I was restless for quite awhile before I could pick up the pen. When I prayed, God did give me the words to write and He revealed to me many amazing insights. I realized that God is not the God of the dead, but the living (Matthew 22:32). When we are in Christ, we are always alive, even if physically dead. Jesus links heaven to earth. I literally saw a mental picture of Jesus with His arms stretched out, one hand was touching heaven and the other was touching earth. He was the bridge that connected the living on earth to the living in heaven. Death had no relevance or significance because of Jesus.

The term “living dead” had a whole new meaning. There is hope for the believer as Jesus’ words from John 5:24-25 came back to mind, "I tell you the truth, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed over from death to life.” Jesus fills in the great chasm. He continued to say, “I tell you the truth, a time is coming and has now come when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God and those who hear will live.” How can the dead “hear?” The answer is “with spiritual ears.” Life on earth is not just about the body but about the Spirit. The Spirit is what lives forever.

Our mission is to evangelize the lost and awaken the saved to live empowered lives by the Work of God and His Holy Spirit. Daily Disciples Ministries makes a difference for the kingdom of God by teaching and training believers how to be in God's Word, how to pray and how to walk with Jesus every day, as His daily disciple.
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Re: Daily Disciples

Post  Admin on Tue 12 Apr 2011, 11:47 am

April 12

Today's Reading: 1 Samuel 19-21; Luke 11:29-54

Today's Thoughts: God’s Dwelling Place

And let them make Me a sanctuary, that I may dwell among them. Exodus 25:8

Does it matter to you where you live? Are you satisfied with your house or do you hope for something more, something better? For many of us, our physical dwelling place tends to keep us longing for a something a little nicer. If we live in the same house for a long time, we probably have redecorated most of it more than once. As humans, we get bored and want a fresh look at the things around us, especially our homes. As physical structures, our homes deteriorate in the elements and require repairs and fix-ups over time. Regardless of the reasons, we all must deal with where we dwell. So what about where God dwells?

Where does God dwell? The verse above tells us that God had a place made just so He could dwell with His people. But this place was no ordinary dwelling; it was a holy place, a sanctuary where His people could enter into the presence of the Lord. This sanctuary was built to the finest detail using the best fabrics, stones and precious metals. As the Israelites transported this mobile dwelling place throughout their travels in the desert, they never needed to upgrade, redecorate, or fix-up…even after 40 years! The Presence of the Lord kept all things restored, refreshed and renewed.

But were the Israelites completely satisfied with the things given to them by God? How could these people have been anything but eternally grateful and in awe of the Lord’s miraculous power in their lives? But the Bible tells us that they were stiff-necked and continually complaining. What about us? Are we satisfied with what God has given us? Even more so, what about His promise we have that His Holy Spirit lives within us? John 1:14 says that the Word became flesh and tabernacled (dwelt) among us. Jesus came to earth to dwell with us. He left us His Holy Spirit who dwells in us today. Paul tells us in First Corinthians 6:19 that our bodies are the “temple” of the Holy Spirit, so we are now God’s dwelling place, for those who have accepted Jesus as Savior.

We should be very thankful that the Lord does not get bored with His temples, or His dwelling places today. What if He became dissatisfied to the point of looking for something better? He is God and He has every right to want more, to want the best. And thankfully for us, that something better is just what He has in store for us, not here but in heaven. Jesus promised that He would go to prepare a place for us (John 14:2). The key for us: get our eyes off our earthly houses and fix them upon Jesus, our eternal home with Him.

Our mission is to evangelize the lost and awaken the saved to live empowered lives by the Work of God and His Holy Spirit. Daily Disciples Ministries makes a difference for the kingdom of God by teaching and training believers how to be in God's Word, how to pray and how to walk with Jesus every day, as His daily disciple.
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