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+Dev+ Michael D. Inman

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Re: +Dev+ Michael D. Inman

Post  Admin on Mon 29 May 2017, 9:50 pm

Date: May 29, 2017 at 2:05 AM
Topic: +DEV+  Flawed Impressions

Flawed Impressions

“Then the man who had received the one talent came. `Master,' he said, `I knew that you are a hard man. . . . So I was afraid and went out and hid your talent in the ground’” (Matthew 25:24-25). 

Scripture Focus: Matthew 25:24-28

The servant in our Scripture passage had a tragically flawed impression of his master. He perceived him as a hard man, someone to be greatly feared. Before going on a long journey, the master had entrusted this servant with a talent. It was a coin of the highest denomination, worth the equivalent of about $1,000. Isn't this an act of a generous, affirming master? 

He had given each man money “according to his ability” to multiply the investment. So, he was not a man who overburdened his servants. He was holding realistic expectations. The master's gracious response to the other servants who had wisely invested their talents also opposes the image of a harsh man.

How had this third servant so misjudged his master's true nature? Had he no previous interest in cultivating a closer relationship? Had he avoided his master's presence? His false assumptions revealed he didn't know his master at all. A shovel of contempt was the bitter response to the master's trust as the servant carelessly buried his valuable coin.

Insight: Are we harboring false impressions of God? Have we wisely invested the gifts and talents He has released to us? 

Please feel free to use this devotional to send on to your friends or share with your church fellowship and Bible study groups.

We are in urgent need of Prayer and financial partners,
If you would like to become a prayer partner and or a financial partner with monthly or one time gifts.
A freewill offering to Restoration Ministry may be made via PayPal at our web site:    http://www.rollanet.org/~restore/donations.htm

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Re: +Dev+ Michael D. Inman

Post  Admin on Fri 26 May 2017, 5:54 pm

Date: May 26, 2017 at 1:19 AM
Topic: +DEV+  Hilarious Giving

Hilarious Giving

“Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver” (2 Corinthians 9:7). 

Scripture Focus: 2 Corinthians 9:6-9 

Our attitude toward giving is an excellent indication of knowing God. The amount we give is irrelevant. What feelings are triggered as the collection plate approaches our row? How quickly are our wallets opened? How easily do our pens gain access to our checkbooks? 

The word translated “cheerful” doesn’t quite capture the Greek hilaros in describing the kind of giver God loves. It actually forms the root for hilarious! Hmm. Just how hilarious are we as the ushers turn to face the congregation? I visited a church that accurately interpreted biblical giving. Impromptu applause accompanied their offering time!

How sad for God to observe us being coaxed into parting with our resources. Who can dispute He really doesn’t need our treasures? He made the earth! It's for our ultimate blessing He privileges us to give.

Hilarious generosity reflects an accurate grasp of the divine riches that have been showered on us. God's overwhelming grace and love can't be contained. Let's appreciate every opportunity to bless Him back.

Insight: Stinginess is an absurd response to God, who withheld nothing from us -- not even His only Son. It’s not How MUCH, but simply HOW we give.
Please feel free to use this devotional to send on to your friends or share with your church fellowship and Bible study groups.

We are in urgent need of Prayer and financial partners,
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Re: +Dev+ Michael D. Inman

Post  Admin on Thu 25 May 2017, 10:48 pm

Date: May 25, 2017 at 3:05 AM
Topic: +DEV+  Learning to Lean

Learning to Lean

“I lie down and sleep; I wake again, because the Lord sustains me. I will not fear the tens of thousands drawn up against me on every side. . . .From the Lord comes deliverance” (Psalm 3:5-6, 8). 

Scripture Focus: Psalm 3:5-8 

The Hebrew word “sustain” is multifaceted. In today’s verse it literally means to be propped up! It infers leaning on or taking hold of someone, just as King David kept a firm grasp on God as he fearlessly faced countless enemies. He declared tens of thousands were against him on every side, and yet he could stand courageously. Stand? Maybe not. Leaning was his probable pose. Leaning on God. 

We may never be surrounded by enemies like David was, but some of us may feel under siege of troublesome circumstances. Health problems, financial strains, exhausting schedules, multiple responsibilities, relational rifts -- they all take their toll. But when we are about to falter, God's strong arms prop us back up. As we lean on Him, strength returns and we go on.

Scripture teaches that God's strength is perfected. Whether facing Goliath's threats as a young shepherd boy or evading Saul's wrath in dank caves, David knew the true posture of power was learning to lean.

Insight: If you are blessed, your own prideful props will fail and you will know God's steadying hand on the small of your back -- sustaining. .

We are in urgent need of Prayer and financial partners,
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Re: +Dev+ Michael D. Inman

Post  Admin on Tue 23 May 2017, 6:38 pm

Date: May 23, 2017 at 12:25 AM
Topic: +DEV+  Penetrating Light

Penetrating Light

“This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but men loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil . . . But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light” (John 3:19,21). 

Scripture Focus: John 3:18-21

The Light of Christ is penetrating, illuminating everything cowering in the shadows. The Greek word describes strong, steadily pouring rays manifesting all they touch. God seekers need to overcome their fear of this Light and learn to welcome it. 

Jesus said that evil people love darkness because it hides their amoral ways. They maintain the illusion that all is well so long as they avoid God's rays. Jesus said they actually detest His Light! This word implies persecution. So, it's a hate not satisfied with just ignoring the Light; it also longs to hurt those who have chosen to live in its piercing radiance.

Everything that the Light exposes, we are better off without. Old habits and attitudes lingering from our darkness days keep us from clearly understanding His ways. More tragically, they prevent the very people God wants to reach from seeing His Son's power at work in us. They assume the positive things we do come from our own goodness. This possibility alone should make us cry, “More Light, my Lord! More Light on my soul!”

Insight: When Jesus takes up residence in our hearts, we can finally make friends with the Light that streams from His presence. 
Please feel free to use this devotional to send on to your friends or share with your church fellowship and Bible study groups.

We are in urgent need of Prayer and financial partners,
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Re: +Dev+ Michael D. Inman

Post  Admin on Mon 22 May 2017, 5:48 pm

Date: May 22, 2017 at 3:13 AM
Topic: +DEV+  Keep It Simple

Keep It Simple

“Let the little children come to me . . . for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. I tell you the truth, anyone who will not receive the kingdom. . .like a little child will never enter it” (Mark 10:14-15).

Scripture Focus: Mark 10:13-16

Henri Nouwen taught Christian spirituality at Harvard Divinity School, but it wasn't until he spent a year at L'Arche in France, caring for the mentally handicapped, that he grasped the simplicity of knowing God. He discovered the mentally retarded hear with their hearts, not with their intellects. 

Nouwen was enthralled with the residents' prayers as he listened to their directness and clear love for Jesus. He knew his former students could have learned much more about a personal relationship with God from these residents than they had in his prestigious Ivy League classroom.

God wants us to receive the things of the Spirit with childlike trust, not as we so often sift every concept through our intellect. We need to listen with our hearts and welcome the love and companionship of knowing Christ.

A religious scholar was once asked, “What is the most vital theological truth you would hope to pass on to others?” Without hesitation he began, “Jesus loves me. This I know. For the Bible tells me so.”

Insight: God doesn't expect us to stop using our minds to seek Him. But He does ask us to submit our minds to His loving sovereignty. 

Please feel free to use this devotional to send on to your friends or share with your church fellowship and Bible study groups.

We are in urgent need of Prayer and financial partners,
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Re: +Dev+ Michael D. Inman

Post  Admin on Fri 19 May 2017, 10:42 pm

Date: May 19, 2017 at 3:33 AM
Topic: +DEV+  The Lifelong God

The Lifelong God

“Even to your old age and gray hairs I am he, I am he who will sustain you. I have made you and I will carry you; I will sustain you and I will rescue you” (Isaiah 46:4). 

Scripture Focus: Isaiah 46:1-4 

“Listen up! From the instant your seed was planted in your mother's womb, I drew near. With your first gasp, I lifted you into My arms, and I have never let go. When life's trials tormented your soul, I bore the burden of your weight, sustaining you.” 

“What about later? When I am old and feeble,” a man wonders. “Will You then pass me by?”

“I am the One who remains! We walk together uninterrupted. As death approaches, My daring rescue will release you from life's last painful grasp into My presence forever.”

So are God’s amazing promises. From cradle to grave the Voice thunders, “I am He! Know Me!” Are we gratefully listening, or do we try to hobble on the world's foolish crutches, rebelling at being carried by anyone, including God?

Many years ago, I frantically shouted to the heavens, “Are You real?” The reply was instant, “I am He!” I finally threw away my crutches, my own failed coping strategies, and I found He had always been there -- waiting.

Insight: If you are searching today, won't you receive this God of lifelong love and care? He has been waiting since you first nestled in the womb. 
Please feel free to use this devotional to send on to your friends or share with your church fellowship and Bible study groups.

We are in urgent need of Prayer and financial partners,
If you would like to become a prayer partner and or a financial partner with monthly or one time gifts.
A freewill offering to Restoration Ministry may be made via PayPal at our web site:    http://www.rollanet.org/~restore/donations.htm

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Re: +Dev+ Michael D. Inman

Post  Admin on Thu 18 May 2017, 9:44 pm

Date: May 18, 2017 at 2:06 AM
Topic: c

Idol Makers

“You shall have no other gods before me. You shall not make for yourself an idol in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below” (Exodus 20:3-4). 

Scripture Focus: Exodus 20:1-6 

Enlightenment philosopher Voltaire observed, “If God made us in His image, we have certainly returned the compliment.” Once we leave the pages of Scripture and start forming our concept of God from other sources, we become idol makers. We create images tarnished by human imaginings. 

Knowing God is a revelatory experience through the power of the Holy Spirit. The journey begins in the Word. Faithful study of Scripture with a prayer for discernment on our lips guides us to seeing God accurately. It's the surest protection against turning to idols.

People fancy God to be whatever they desire. One famous architect stated, “I believe in God. I call him Nature.” The bigot's god hates skin shades. The god of promiscuity winks at perversions and marital betrayals. The materialist's god lusts for empty things. New Age gods tempt with trendy universal spiritualism. We must lay down any image formed apart from the truth. Our view of God must remain uncluttered by faulty conceptions.

Insight: What folly for creatures to busy themselves trying to form their Creator! This arrogance tragically clouds our vision of Him. 

Please feel free to use this devotional to send on to your friends or share with your church fellowship and Bible study groups.

We are in urgent need of Prayer and financial partners,
If you would like to become a prayer partner and or a financial partner with monthly or one time gifts.
A freewill offering to Restoration Ministry may be made via PayPal at our web site:    http://www.rollanet.org/~restore/donations.htm

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Re: +Dev+ Michael D. Inman

Post  Admin on Wed 17 May 2017, 11:51 am

Date: May 17, 2017 at 12:27 AM
Topic: +DEV+  The Main Event

The Main Event

“She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord's feet listening to what he said. But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made” (Luke 10:39-40). 

Scripture Focus: Luke 10:38-42

Soon after the birth of their only child, Martha Blackburn's young husband was struck with a rare kidney disorder. They had just begun life together in the pastorate. Over the next 20 years, Martha took on many added responsibilities both at home and in their church whenever illness restricted his activities. At times, her distractions kept her from being still before the Lord. 

“Don’t be so busy with the preparations that you miss the main event. Too often I lived up to my namesake!” Martha warned the women gathered for a winter retreat. We had been studying the familiar story of Jesus' visit with two sisters. Martha had angrily scurried about the kitchen preparing Jesus' meal while Mary sat listening to Him. Rather than rebuking Mary for her inactivity, Jesus told Martha her sister had made the better choice!

Seated before a rugged stone fireplace, flames crackled, warming our cheeks. A stillness settled as our stressful, complicated lives faded. We all felt the longing for the hallowed place at Jesus' feet.

Insight: If your heart can't sing in the kitchen, stop the preparations! It's time to sit a spell with the One you serve. 
Please feel free to use this devotional to send on to your friends or share with your church fellowship and Bible study groups.
We are in urgent need of Prayer and financial partners,
If you would like to become a prayer partner and or a financial partner with monthly or one time gifts.
A freewill offering to Restoration Ministry may be made via PayPal at our web site:    http://www.rollanet.org/~restore/donations.htm
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Re: +Dev+ Michael D. Inman

Post  Admin on Tue 16 May 2017, 1:20 pm

Date: May 15, 2017 at 9:55 PM
Topic: +DEV+  I See Him

I See Him

“Yet I am not ashamed, because I know whom I have believed, and am convinced that he is able to guard what I have entrusted to him for that day” (2 Timothy 1:12). 

Scripture Focus: 2 Timothy 1:8-12

“If you don't have confidence in the one leading, you stop following him.” The pastor's words struck deep. Reflecting on God's lifelong faithfulness, I would be a fool to stop walking His path for me. 

Paul shared with Timothy the cost of serving Christ. He had faced incredible suffering, but Paul was never ashamed to testify of his Lord. Why? Because he knew Him! The Greek translation for “to know” literally means to see. Paul was saying, “I see with absolute clarity the One I am following. I wholly trust Jesus Christ with the sacred deposit of all that I am and possess.”

The brave apostle confidently walked God's often painful path for him until the day his blood was spilt out on Roman soil as a drink offering. He saw the One awaiting him with open arms. He humbly noted the prize being held up in one of his Master's nail scarred hands. Paul boldly faced his earthly executioner because of his assurance, “If I'm not here with you on earth, I am with Him!”

Insight: Do your spirit's eyes see Christ clearly? Knowing about Him is not necessarily synonymous with knowing Him. 

Please feel free to use this devotional to send on to your friends or share with your church fellowship and Bible study groups.

We are in urgent need of Prayer and financial partners,
If you would like to become a prayer partner and or a financial partner with monthly or one time gifts.
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Re: +Dev+ Michael D. Inman

Post  Admin on Wed 10 May 2017, 10:43 pm

Date: May 10, 2017 at 2:09 AM
Topic: +DEV+  The Light of the World

The Light of the World

"When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, `I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life'" (John 8:12). 

Scripture Focus: John 8:12-30 

A thrilling part of the ceremonies of the Feast of Tabernacles came when the priests lit the giant lamps in the temple court. The people gathered to sing praises to God, remembering how He had provided the pillar of fire at night when their ancestors lived in the wilderness (Numbers 9:15-23). 

This time the people enjoyed the symbol without recognizing that the reality was in their presence. They loved the shadow, but Jesus was the substance. "I am the light of the world," He announced. 

Our world is full of darkness and spiritual delusion. Evil holds whole nations in its clutches. But Jesus promises that whoever follows Him will be bathed in pure beams from God. Jesus, as the light of the world, brings salvation and a totally new atmosphere in which believers can walk. In Jesus' light, His followers are able to discern what is evil and will be guided to the truth. They live in the light, for no matter how evil their surroundings, it can never blot out the light, for the light of life lives within them. 

Insight: Though you were born in darkness, you can step into the light and live there as you trust Jesus and follow Him daily. 

Please feel free to use this devotional to send on to your friends or share with your church fellowship and Bible study groups.

We are in urgent need of Prayer and financial partners,
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Re: +Dev+ Michael D. Inman

Post  Admin on Mon 08 May 2017, 10:05 pm

Date: May 7, 2017 at 9:49 PM
Topic: +DEV+ Power to Forgive

Power to Forgive

"Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you? No one, sir, she said. Then neither do I condemn you, Jesus declared. Go now and leave your life of sin." (John 8:10-11).

Scripture Focus: John 8:1-11

The self-appointed sin-spotters brought a woman to Jesus whom they had caught in the act of adultery. These respected religious men forced the woman to stand before Jesus and the group that had gathered to hear His teaching. Catch their tone as they laid a trap for Jesus. According to the Law of Moses, they claimed, the woman should be stoned. Then they added, "Now what do You say?"

Jesus did not answer directly, but bent down to write on the ground with His finger. After they persisted with their questions, Jesus said, "If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her." One by one the accusers slunk away. In one of the tenderest scenes in the Bible, Jesus assured her that He did not condemn her. "Go now," He said, adding, "and leave your life of sin."

Jesus read her heart, and knowing that someday He would bear the condemnation both she and her accusers deserved, He offered her forgiveness. The accusers went away with their guilt; she went away cleansed and forgiven.

Insight: Jesus did not come to earth to condemn you, but to offer you forgiveness and cleansing.

Please feel free to use this devotional to send on to your friends or share with your church fellowship and Bible study groups.

We are in urgent need of Prayer and financial partners,
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Re: +Dev+ Michael D. Inman

Post  Admin on Tue 02 May 2017, 9:30 pm

Welcome!

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart” (Matthew 11:28-29).

Scripture Focus: John 6:35-40

When an Eastern traveler was judged to have come in peace, he would be greeted by his host, “You have walked over my eyes.” That meant he had passed the trust test and was welcome. Servants would wash the weary traveler's dusty feet, bring food and drink, and settle him on quilts and namdas made of soft lamb's wool.

Are you a weary traveler? Are the fearsome pressures of modern life taxing your strength and stability? Are you physically, emotionally, and spiritually drained? Pulled in every direction with endless expectations, is fear lurking in the dark places of your mind? Someone has been watching you.

Jesus’ arms are open, “Come! You have walked over My eyes and I've seen the burdens you carry. I've seen your sadness. You are so tired. Come, stay close to Me. Be refreshed. I will lighten your load and give you rest!”

Jesus’ eyes also walk over those troubled places of our souls, kept even from those closest to us. Still He says, “Come. You're welcome here!”

Insight: Jesus' arms are open to you today. He invites you to come to Him. The next move is yours. Don't hesitate to respond to Him.

Please feel free to use this devotional to send on to your friends or share with your church fellowship and Bible study groups.

We are in urgent need of Prayer and financial partners,
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Re: +Dev+ Michael D. Inman

Post  Admin on Mon 01 May 2017, 10:15 pm

Date: May 1, 2017 at 12:06 AM
Topic: +DEV+ Be Strong!

Be Strong!

“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go” (Joshua 1:9).

Scripture Focus: Joshua 1:6-9

“Under the sparkling vault of heaven there is a God who hears and sees you.” Little did the young Sojourner Truth know how much she would need to hold on to this promise spoken by her mother Elizabeth. By age eleven she was separated from her parents and sold to another slave owner who beat her.

Sojourner needed to know that God heard her moans and saw her laboring like a man in the fields because of her six foot hardy frame. She needed this confidence when she fled one night with her newborn, after her third owner broke his promise of freedom. Sojourner was forced to leave her other children behind.

Though returned to her master, her greatest grief was knowing that her beloved father suffered only a few miles away. Word came that he was lame, blind, and homeless. But Sojourner trusted the God who heard and saw under the sparkling vault of heaven. She remained strong and courageous.

Insight: The pain and uncertainty of her life introduced Sojourner Truth to the God who hears, sees, and strengthens us. Be strong as you trust Him today.

Please feel free to use this devotional to send on to your friends or share with your church fellowship and Bible study groups.

We are in urgent need of Prayer and financial partners,
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Re: +Dev+ Michael D. Inman

Post  Admin on Fri 28 Apr 2017, 10:25 pm

Date: April 28, 2017 at 12:30 AM
Topic: +DEV+  More Than a Fancy

More Than a Fancy

“While he was in Bethany . . . a woman came with an alabaster jar of very expensive perfume, made of pure nard. She broke the jar and poured the perfume on his head” (Mark 14:3).

Scripture Focus: Mark 14:3-8

“He didn't love God, he just fancied Him.” Let's consider this anonymous quote today. The woman at Bethany more than fancied Jesus. There was no mention of her being wealthy and yet she poured the equivalent of a year's wages from her alabaster jar on Messiah's head!

“She has done a beautiful thing.” Jesus countered the disciples' outrage at such extravagance. “Wherever the gospel is preached she will be remembered for this as a memorial to her.”

“Lord, what is my alabaster jar?” I ask. What is my precious nard that I may pour it out as an offering like this woman?”

Luxury cars, hot fudge sundaes, vacation cruises, attractive people -- these are things to fancy. But the God of the Universe deserves more than this depth of devotion. He deserves our love.

R. J. Campell, 19th Century author, wrote, “I owe Him my soul! He fills my whole spiritual horizon.” This brother's heart more than fancied God. He loves Him like the woman at Bethany.

Insight: God never views lavish displays of genuine love as a waste, whether they are being extended to Him or to one another.

Please feel free to use this devotional to send on to your friends or share with your church fellowship and Bible study groups.

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Re: +Dev+ Michael D. Inman

Post  Admin on Wed 26 Apr 2017, 10:47 pm

Date: April 26, 2017 at 1:40 AM
Topic: +DEV+ On Our Own

On Our Own

“Eli's sons were wicked men; they had no regard for the Lord. . . . This sin of the young men was very great in the Lord's sight, for they were treating the Lord’s offering with contempt” (1 Samuel 2:12, 17).

Scripture Focus: 1 Samuel 2:12-36

Abraham Lincoln once said, “You have to do your own growing no matter how tall your grandfather was.” Being born into the priestly lineage of Levi, with its inherent religious stature, did not release Eli's sons from seeking and knowing God for themselves.

How it must have grieved Eli to watch young Samuel, clad in his linen ephod, faithfully ministering in the Lord's presence, while his own sons were so corrupt. With each report of their immoral, blasphemous behavior, his heart must have winced.

“I chose your father’s house to be priests... Why do you honor your sons more than me?” Eli could still feel the sting of God's rebuke.

One day news came that both his sons had died at the hands of the Philistines, but Eli's fatal fall occurred when he was told that the ark of the covenant had been captured. When his daughter-in-law, laboring in childbirth, was told of the deaths and the loss of the ark, she named her son Ichabod (no glory), stating, “The glory has departed from Israel.”

Insight: Whether or not our children were “born in the pew,” our fervent prayer should be for them to genuinely encounter God for themselves.
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Re: +Dev+ Michael D. Inman

Post  Admin on Mon 24 Apr 2017, 10:56 pm


Date: April 24, 2017 at 2:44 AM
Topic: +DEV+ Walking in the Midst

Walking in the Midst

“Though I walk in the midst of trouble, you preserve my life; you stretch out your hand against the anger of my foes, with your right hand you save me” (Psalm 138:7).

Scripture Focus: Psalm 138

“After viewing the lab results, I'm inclined to suspect Joe does have a malignancy within the thyroid gland,” the surgeon paused, peering kindly over his glasses as they absorbed his words. “The good news is that this type of cancer is 95 percent curable with the removal of the gland.”

That was great news, but the horror of hearing the “c” word that morning once again attached to one of our children gripped me. Our eldest son David bravely endured six weeks of radiation treatment two years ago in his battle against Hodgkin's Lymphoma. Our youngest son Dan survived a high-risk bone marrow transplant at age eight. Now Vikki . . . my heart was breaking.

Where do you go with such devastating news? My husband also was facing lung and possible heart surgery following several hospitalizations after a major heart attack. Trouble was biting my heels! But by faith, I determined to see a Hand stretching out to my precious family once again in power, love, honor, and the authority of heaven.

Insight: We are God's people and the psalmist rests in the glorious truth that He will never abandon us, no matter how threatening the troubles.

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Re: +Dev+ Michael D. Inman

Post  Admin on Fri 21 Apr 2017, 10:44 pm


Date: April 21, 2017 at 6:33 AM
Topic: +DEV+ The First Figs

The First Figs

“I will give them a heart to know me, that I am the Lord. They will be my people, and I will be their God, for they will return to me with all their heart” (Jeremiah 24:7).

Scripture Focus: Jeremiah 24:3-7

“What do you see, Jeremiah?” asked the Lord. “Two baskets before the Temple,” he answered. “One filled with choice, sweet figs and the other with figs not worth eating!”

Israel’s warm climate permits more than one annual fig crop. The figs harvested in June are the finest. The bad fruit of Jeremiah's vision was probably the winter figs that fall prematurely from the trees during the spring winds. The good figs symbolized the first wave of Israelite captives in Babylon. Included among them were Daniel and his friends, known for their attractiveness, strength, and keen intellects. God's eyes beheld His people, knowing one day they would return to their beloved Israel.

Greater than their national destiny was God's promise to give them a heart to know Him. America's religious heritage is rich, like Israel's. I recall prayers beginning our public school day. Many of my teachers also led Sunday School classes. I miss these spiritual roots, yet my spirit longs more for that second promise -- God's touch on individual hearts.

Insight: It's often in times of lingering captivity, the struggling, painful places, that God produces the prized sweet fruit He most appreciates in our lives.

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Re: +Dev+ Michael D. Inman

Post  Admin on Thu 20 Apr 2017, 5:39 pm

Date: April 20, 2017 at 2:30 AM
Topic: +DEV+ The Enemy Is Me

The Enemy Is Me

“The mind of sinful man is death, but the mind controlled by the Spirit is life and peace; the sinful mind is hostile to God. It does not submit to God’s law” (Romans 8:6-7).

Scripture Focus: Romans 8:5-8

“Lord, deliver me from myself.” So pleaded 17th Century physician and writer Thomas Brown. He obviously understood that often our biggest hindrance to knowing God is our stubborn rebellion against His ways. Perhaps we need look no further than our mirrors to discover the culprit stalling our spiritual growth.

The writer of Romans explains that we must set our minds on the Spirit's desires, not on our own flawed dispositions. Spirit promptings such as contacting a hurting friend, entering our prayer closets, or reading our Bibles should take precedence over other desires of the moment. After hearing some disturbing news, I recently received an encouraging e-mail from a friend. “God brought you to mind and you are in my prayers.” I'm thankful she had her mind set on the Spirit's desires that day!

The goal of God-seekers is to not allow their lower natures to shape their decisions or to mold their conduct. The Spirit's ways are much higher and satisfying than earthbound perspectives.

Insight: Submitting to God is not demeaning. It means to fit in with another's plans, and God's plans for us bring peace and life.

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Re: +Dev+ Michael D. Inman

Post  Admin on Tue 18 Apr 2017, 10:36 pm

Date: April 17, 2017 at 10:24 PM
Topic: +DEV+ The Gift

The Gift

“Now devote your heart and soul to seeking the Lord your God. Begin to build the sanctuary of the Lord God, so that you may bring the ark of the covenant . . . into the temple” (1 Chronicles 22:19).

Scripture Focus: 1 Chronicles 22:17-19

King David was a man after God's own heart. In fact, he spent a lifetime trying to know God better. Though he endured frightening circumstances, faced daunting challenges, and owned up to the darkest of sins, David's truest mark of valor was his relentless quest to know God intimately.

When preparing for the construction of the temple, David commanded the Israelite leaders to first devote themselves to seeking God. The Hebrew word translated “first” means to give, or figuratively, to make a present of. David was inferring: “More important than the work of your hands is the preparation of your hearts! Seek God with great enthusiasm and then begin to build. Your hearts are a gift far more precious to Him than the hundred thousand talents of gold and the million talents of silver we have amassed for the temple.”

David’s instructions are crucial to our priorities. Too often we focus on the work ahead and tackle our plans with hearts unacquainted with the spiritual hunger of the shepherd boy who became a king.

Insight: God can entrust enormous tasks to those who understand His value system. He appreciates our work, but He treasures our hearts.

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Re: +Dev+ Michael D. Inman

Post  Admin on Mon 17 Apr 2017, 4:47 pm

Date: April 17, 2017 at 12:37 AM
Topic: +DEV+ More Than 500 Witnesses

More Than 500 Witnesses

"...he appeared to Peter and then to the Twelve. After that, he appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers at the same time, most of whom are still living, though some have fallen asleep." (1 Corinthians 15:5-6)
Scripture Focus: 1 Corinthians 15:3-22

The essence of the Christian faith is rooted not merely in what happened when the Lord died, in the beautiful sacrifice He made for the sins of humanity. Certainly, the time Christ spent on earth proclaiming the Good News of His grace has affected people all throughout history. Some see Him as a great role model for love and peace, others a wise teacher unfairly executed. But the heart of the Christian faith has been the literal heart beat of what happened after His death.

It was after His lungs collapsed and heart stopped that something truly unprecedented occurred: the once-dead man became alive again and actually walked those same dusty roads not just once, but for forty days, God in human
flesh. He visited with friends in a garden, chatted with them on the road or in their apartments, even cooked breakfast for them on the beach.

Why did Jesus, the God-Man, spend 40 days after His death appearing to over 500 people? To establish His new body! And now He establishes His new kingdom in our hearts.

Insight: Paul writes that if Christ wasn't raised from the dead, our faith is useless. how can Christ's resurrection affect your faith today?

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Re: +Dev+ Michael D. Inman

Post  Admin on Thu 13 Apr 2017, 6:22 pm

Date: April 13, 2017 at 2:49 AM
Topic: +DEV+ He Is Able

He Is Able

“To him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus” (Ephesians 3:20-21).

Scripture Focus: Ephesians 3:14-21

In her book, Disciplines of the Heart, Anne Ortlund raises and answers the question, “Why do so many Christians live gray, struggling, carnal lives? Because they haven't yet comprehended the vastness of the power within them and what to do with it.”

We want to feel we’re in control of our lives, that we can set our goals and enjoy the satisfaction of achieving them. Could it be that we're setting those goals too low, that we're content to live colorless lives?

The context in today’s verse has to do with Jews and Gentiles functioning together harmoniously. Paul was confident that when God's power and love was released in each believer, the miracle would occur. That same power and love is at work in you. Do you feel, though, that the gap between this Scripture and your experience is as vast as the space between heaven and earth? Commenting on this passage, Bishop Moule quoted his godfather, “You have your Bible, and you have your knees; use them.”

Insight: Study the promises God is making you. Pray that He will show you how to make them your own.

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Re: +Dev+ Michael D. Inman

Post  Admin on Wed 12 Apr 2017, 9:55 pm

Date: April 12, 2017 at 1:20 AM
Topic: +DEV+ Joy in His Presence

Joy in His Presence

“You have made known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand” (Psalm 16:11).

Scripture Focus: Psalm 16

David wrote Psalm 16 as his personal celebration. He was expressing the joy he had in his fellowship with God.

We could read the psalm as simply a reflection of his experience, but let's read it with eyes of faith, knowing that our unchanging God, who gave David a song, can also fill our hearts with sweet melody.

David entered joy in God’s presence by making a deliberate choice. He trusted God to be his portion in life and to preserve him in death. As a result of this choice, he discovered that apart from the Lord, he had nothing of lasting value (v. 2).

The psalm comes to a climax as David sings the words of today's verse. God has shown him a way of life. In His presence alone can be found the true joy that his heart craved. And in closeness to God are pleasures that nothing can diminish or remove.

David wrote from personal experience. That experience can be yours. Pleasures that can never fade are to be found at God's right hand. It was true for David. It's true for you.

Insight: Where are you searching for the happiness your heart craves? What promises are you pursuing? True joy awaits you in God's presence.
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Re: +Dev+ Michael D. Inman

Post  Admin on Tue 11 Apr 2017, 10:08 pm

date: April 10, 2017 at 11:55 PM
Topic: +DEV+ Eternal Glory

Eternal Glory

“Our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen” (2 Corinthians 4:17-18).

Scripture Focus: 2 Corinthians 4:7-18

In medieval times scientists were occupied with alchemy, trying desperately to achieve the transmutation of base metals into gold.

The apostle Paul discovered that God is the true alchemist. He can take the afflictions that threaten to defeat and even destroy us and turn them into eternal glory that far outweighs our suffering.

Paul felt keenly the distresses that tortured his body, mind, and emotions. There was no concealing of his weakness, but he did not lose heart. Within his body lived an eternal spirit that was being renewed every day. What kept him going was the certainty that God was actively at work transforming his stresses, perplexities, and pain into something of eternal significance. God was taking the negative experiences of earthly life and transforming them into positive facets of glory. God was changing Paul into the image of Jesus Christ!

The same God is working in your suffering today to prepare you for eternity. Praise Him for being the divine alchemist.

Insight: Your burdens, weaknesses, your difficult relationships, your losses - all these are the materials God is using to conform you into the image of His Son.

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Re: +Dev+ Michael D. Inman

Post  Admin on Mon 10 Apr 2017, 9:54 pm

Date: April 9, 2017 at 11:32 PM
Topic: +DEV+ New Every Morning

New Every Morning

“Because of the Lord's great love we are not consumed, for his compassion's never fail. They are new every morning; Great is your faithfulness” (Lamentations 3:22-23).

Scripture Focus: Lamentations 3:19-40

God was disciplining His wayward people. Feelings of hopelessness brought the prophet Jeremiah to the brink of despair, but one truth kept him from giving in. He knew that though God was punishing His people, He was acting in love. God had not for one moment abandoned them. He could have given up on them completely,

for they had done nothing to deserve His patience. However, His compassion for His sinning people caused Him to deal with them in love. Though they sinned against Him daily, new proofs of His compassion came every morning.

God has not changed. He still disciplines His own because He loves us. He never throws us aside as worthless, and He never turns away from us. His discipline is for the purpose of turning us back to Him. The psalm-writer recognized this when he wrote, “Before I was afflicted I went astray, but now I obey Your Word. You are good, and what You do is good; teach me Your decrees” (Psalm 119:67-68).

Insight: Is God disciplining you today? Thank Him for His love and that His compassions are new every morning.

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Re: +Dev+ Michael D. Inman

Post  Admin on Thu 06 Apr 2017, 7:24 pm

Date: April 6, 2017 at 2:56 AM
Topic: +DEV+ Which Way, Lord?

Which Way, Lord?

“Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, ‘This is the way; walk in it.’” (Isaiah 30:21).

Scripture Focus: Isaiah 30:19-26

Imagine trying to drive through a strange city at rush hour. You know your destination, but not how to reach it. You try to read the map and then to identify street names as you approach intersections. Sometimes they match up, but most of the time they don't. You can write total frustration over that page in your travel diary.

Then imagine that a local resident joins you. Immediately you sense the difference. “Take a right here,” your guide tells you. “Then at the next light take a left.” The jumble of roads is still as confusing, but now you move with confidence.

God provides that kind of guidance. He doesn't relieve you of the responsibility of making your way through the maze of life, which can be incredibly complex and confusing sometimes, but He promises to be right there beside you.

Though the promise in today’s verse is addressed to Israel, we know that God will not leave His obedient child in doubt. “Turn here,” He whispers to our listening hearts. And we move ahead with confidence.

Insight: Praise God for giving you the direction as you need it through life's maze. “If the Lord delights in a man's way, he makes his steps firm” (Psalm 37:23).

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Re: +Dev+ Michael D. Inman

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