Showing posts with label DAILY DEVOTIONAL. Show all posts
Showing posts with label DAILY DEVOTIONAL. Show all posts

Friday, February 22, 2019

Leading a Just Cause

On 1 November 1872, Susan B. Anthony walked into a polling station , demanding to be registered vote. She voted in the national election. Two weeks later a US Marshal arrested her for “voting without lawful”. The judge wouldn't allow a jury trial. Her sentence was to pay a fine and the cost of the trial.
“Your Honour,” declared Susan Anthony , “ I shall never pay one dollar of your unjust penalty .”

Susan had long been familiar with the controversy and conflict of reform movements.

Years later, she had worked for the American Anti-Slavery Society. She regarded slavery as evil and un-Christian. She published the first women's newspaper and organised the first women's union. Now Susan was at front of the National Women's Suffrage Movement, working tirelessly for women's voting rights.

The work was often discouraging. The press mocked her. She was denied entry into meetings. She was attacked by angry mobs. But these persecutions didn't stop her. She lobbied Congress and organised petitions

In 1929, her efforts helped to change the law, making sure that everyone had the right to vote regardless of their sex. But Susan never had the chance to vote. She had died fourteen years.

Those who lead movements for justice usually suffer ridicule, persecution, and sometimes death. Read in Matthew 23:34-39 what Jesus thinks about those who presecute the prophets of God.

Bible Texts
Matthew 23:34-39

34KJV:Wherefore, behold, I send unto you prophets, and wise men, and scribes: and some of them ye shall kill and crucify; and some of them shall ye scourge in your synagogues, and persecute them from city to city:
35KJV:That upon you may come all the righteous blood shed upon the earth, from the blood of righteous Abel unto the blood of Zacharias son of Barachias, whom ye slew between the temple and the altar.
36KJV:Verily I say unto you, All these things shall come upon this generation.
37KJV:O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!
38KJV:Behold, your house is left unto you desolate.
39KJV:For I say unto you, Ye shall not see me henceforth, till ye shall say, Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord.

Questions to Consider
  • Why do you think people fear and persecute leaders such as Susan B. Anthony and the ones Jesus describes?
  • When has your unpopular stance caused you to suffer persecution?

Motion Points
  • Reading through one of the prophets of the old testament such as Amos, trying to understand why his messages were ridiculed and rejected.
  • Listening to leaders who have differing options, keeping your mind open for truth -even if it's uncomfortable.

Hymn for Today

Further Study
  • Ezekiel 20:13-20
  • 2Timothy 3:1-9
  • Jeremiah 3:11-13

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Follow Your Dreams

Jane loved to dance. She had been doing it ever since she was little and now she was older she was starting to think that maybe she could make a career out of it. However, many of her school mates thought dancing was silly and would regularly make fun of her, her dancing anything else they could in order to make her feel small.

“It's a waste of time,” they'd say, “you ‘ll never be good enough.”

Though the comments really hurt Jane, she was determined to carry on because she knew how much fun dancing was for her and how good it was for keeping her fit.

After she finished school, she went to college to train as a dancer , and years later, after lots of her first professional performance, she smiled with pride, knowing that all her hard work and perseverance had paid off. Thank goodness she hadn't given in to the taunts back in school, otherwise she would have missed out on all this.

Jane had  to battle through people judging her and making fun of her because they didn't understand something that she was so passionate about.

Bible Text
Psalm 69:6-15

6KJV:Let not them that wait on thee, O Lord God of hosts, be ashamed for my sake: let not those that seek thee be confounded for my sake, O God of Israel.
7KJV:Because for thy sake I have borne reproach; shame hath covered my face.
8KJV:I am become a stranger unto my brethren, and an alien unto my mother's children.
9KJV:For the zeal of thine house hath eaten me up; and the reproaches of them that reproached thee are fallen upon me.
10KJV:When I wept, and chastened my soul with fasting, that was to my reproach.
11KJV:I made sackcloth also my garment; and I became a proverb to them.
12KJV:They that sit in the gate speak against me; and I was the song of the drunkards.
13KJV:But as for me, my prayer is unto thee, O Lord, in an acceptable time: O God, in the multitude of thy mercy hear me, in the truth of thy salvation.
14KJV:Deliver me out of the mire, and let me not sink: let me be delivered from them that hate me, and out of the deep waters.
15KJV:Let not the waterflood overflow me, neither let the deep swallow me up, and let not the pit shut her mouth upon me.
16KJV:Hear me, O Lord; for thy lovingkindness is good: turn unto me according to the multitude of thy tender mercies.

Questions to Consider
  • Jane's passion was dancing. What was it in Psalm 69:6-15 that David was so passionate about?
  • What is similar in a way that both Jane and King David coped with their situations?

Motion Points
  • How you’ll feel if you were misunderstood and mocked by people around you because of something they didn't understand? Consider whether you've ever done the same to another person. If you have, go to them and say sorry.
  • Writing a list of things you are passionate about and that you will be prepared to preserve through difficult situation for.

Hymn for Today

Further Study
  • Romans 4:18-25
  • James 5:7-16
  • Hebrews 12:1-3

You can also read next;
Leading a Just Cause

Saturday, February 09, 2019

The Ultimate Price

Tim had been in New York City before. He loved the annual trip that his family made from Provo, Utah, to watch US Open together in New York, USA.

One Sunday during the 1990 tournament, Tim was waiting with his parents in a Manhattan underground station when a gang approached them. Surrounding the family, they robbed Tim's father and attacked Tim's mother.

Tim fought back to defend his mother. The attackers turned from Tim's mother to Tim. In the struggle, one of the the robbers pulled a knife and stabbed Tim to death.

Tim paid the ultimate price because he couldn't stand watching the ones he loved to get hurt. Jesus , God's son willingly paid the ultimate price for us because he doesn't want us to get hurt forever.

In John 3:1-21, Jesus talks about the gift of eternal life that his death would provide.

Bible Text

1KJV:Now in the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar, Pontius Pilate being governor of Judaea, and Herod being tetrarch of Galilee, and his brother Philip tetrarch of Ituraea and of the region of Trachonitis, and Lysanias the tetrarch of Abilene,
2KJV:Annas and Caiaphas being the high priests, the word of God came unto John the son of Zacharias in the wilderness.
3KJV:And he came into all the country about Jordan, preaching the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins;
4KJV:As it is written in the book of the words of Esaias the prophet, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.
5KJV:Every valley shall be filled, and every mountain and hill shall be brought low; and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough ways shall be made smooth;
6KJV:And all flesh shall see the salvation of God.
7KJV:Then said he to the multitude that came forth to be baptized of him, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come?
8KJV:Bring forth therefore fruits worthy of repentance, and begin not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, That God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.
9KJV:And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: every tree therefore which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
10KJV:And the people asked him, saying, What shall we do then?
11KJV:He answereth and saith unto them, He that hath two coats, let him impart to him that hath none; and he that hath meat, let him do likewise.
12KJV:Then came also publicans to be baptized, and said unto him, Master, what shall we do?
13KJV:And he said unto them, Exact no more than that which is appointed you.
14KJV:And the soldiers likewise demanded of him, saying, And what shall we do? And he said unto them, Do violence to no man, neither accuse any falsely; and be content with your wages.
15KJV:And as the people were in expectation, and all men mused in their hearts of John, whether he were the Christ, or not;
16KJV:John answered, saying unto them all, I indeed baptize you with water; but one mightier than I cometh, the latchet of whose shoes I am not worthy to unloose: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost and with fire:
17KJV:Whose fan is in his hand, and he will throughly purge his floor, and will gather the wheat into his garner; but the chaff he will burn with fire unquenchable.
18KJV:And many other things in his exhortation preached he unto the people.
19KJV:But Herod the tetrarch, being reproved by him for Herodias his brother Philip's wife, and for all the evils which Herod had done,
20KJV:Added yet this above all, that he shut up John in prison.
21KJV:Now when all the people were baptized, it came to pass, that

Questions to Consider
  • How were Tim's feeling fought for his parents like God's desire for us?
  • According to this passage ( especially verses 16-18), what must we do to receive all that God desires for us?

Motion Points
  • Writing John 3:16 on paper, putting it a box, and gift-wrapping the box. Give the box to a friend as reminder of God’s gift of eternal life.
  • Asking your minister or youth leader what eternal life is, then comparing the answer with what Jesus said in this passage.

Hynm for Today

Further Readings
  • Isaiah 12
  • 1 John 5:1-12
  • 1 Timothy 1:12-17

Monday, January 28, 2019

It Is Not About How You Start

Have you ever found yourself looking at other people and wishing you had their life? Maybe it is someone famous or just the person you sit next to in your maths class. We end up thinking that the rest of our life would be so much better  if we had what they have. But your background does not to dictate the rest of your life.

Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu was born in Macedonia in 1910. She had a relatively poor upbringing in an area that was being torn apart by religious intolerance and political upheaval. When she was seven , her father was killed.

Not the greatest of the starts in life! By the time Agnes was twelve she had decided that God wanted her to make a difference with her life and so six years later when she was eighteen, she moved into a convent in Ireland and became a nun.

Later, Agnes moved to India. She felt God telling her to” follow Jesus into the slums” and started a work with the poor that would have a worldwide impact. Agnes became one of the greatest leaders the world has ever seen - motivating thousands of people to reach out to those others would not touch. You might know her better as Mother Teresa.

Bible Text
Micah 5:1-5

1NIV:Marshal your troops now, city of troops, for a siege is laid against us. They will strike Israel’s ruler on the cheek with a rod.
2NIV:“But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are small among the clans of Judah, out of you will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel, whose origins are from of old, from ancient times.”
3NIV:Therefore Israel will be abandoned until the time when she who is in labor bears a son, and the rest of his brothers return to join the Israelites.
4NIV:He will stand and shepherd his flock in the strength of the Lord, in the majesty of the name of the Lord his God. And they will live securely, for then his greatness will reach to the ends of the earth.
5NIV:And he will be our peace when the Assyrians invade our land and march through our fortresses. We will raise against them seven shepherds, even eight commanders,
6NIV:who will rule the land of Assyria with the sword, the land of Nimrod with drawn sword. He will deliver us from the Assyrians when they invade our land and march across our borders.
7NIV:The remnant of Jacob will be in the midst of many peoples like dew from the Lord, like showers on the grass, which do not wait for anyone or depend on man.
8NIV:The remnant of Jacob will be among the nations, in the midst of many peoples, like a lion among the beasts of the forest, like a young lion among flocks of sheep, which mauls and mangles as it goes, and no one can rescue.
9NIV:Your hand will be lifted up in triumph over your enemies, and all your foes will be destroyed.
10NIV:“In that day,” declares the Lord, “I will destroy your horses from among you and demolish your chariots.
11NIV:I will destroy the cities of your land and tear down all your strongholds.
12NIV:I will destroy your witchcraft and you will no longer cast spells.
13NIV:I will destroy your idols and your sacred stones from among you; you will no longer bow down to the work of your hands.
14NIV:I will uproot from among you your Asherah poles when I demolish your cities.
15NIV:I will take vengeance in anger and wrath on the nations that have not obeyed me.

Questions to Consider
  • What similarities are between Jesus’ background and Mother's Teresa?
  • What makes someone like Mother Teresa want to make a difference in the world?

Motion Points
  • Talking to God and asking him to show yoiu where he wants you to leaad.
  • Talking to your youth leader about ways in which you can begin to make a difference in your local area.

Hymn for Today

Further Study
  • Joshua 1:1-9
  • 1 to Timothy 4:12
  • Titus1:5-9

Sunday, January 27, 2019

Sharing Faith, Just Doing My Job Sir

A paperboy drops a newspapers outside a house on one of his regular rounds. The homeowner opens the door and calls after him, “Thanks for bringing me my paper this morning!”

“Just doing my job sir,”

A doctor finishes a routine check-up with one of his oldest patients . Before leaving the room, the old lady turns and says, “Thank you for fitting me into your busy schedule. ”

“Just doing my job ma'am!

A missionary is mocked and ridiculed by the very people he's sacrificed everything for. His family is kidnapped, his home is torched, and he's beaten to within an inch of his life and left bleeding in the gutter.

“Just doing my job, Sir .”

In 1 Corinthians 9:16-27, the apostle Paul reminds us that as Christians it our duty to share our faith. We're all meant to be missionaries, --people willing to set aside our precious ambitions for the most important job entrusted to mankind this side of heaven that is  telling the Good News.

And if we're doing it properly, we will definitely face tough times. We want health, wealth and happiness, but the Bible promises trials , tests and temptations! Like a good athlete, we must grow stronger through these difficult situations, using self control to win the prize.

Bible Text
1 Corinthians 9:16-27

16NIV:For when I preach the gospel, I cannot boast, since I am compelled to preach. Woe to me if I do not preach the gospel!
17NIV:If I preach voluntarily, I have a reward; if not voluntarily, I am simply discharging the trust committed to me.
18NIV:What then is my reward? Just this: that in preaching the gospel I may offer it free of charge, and so not make full use of my rights as a preacher of the gospel.
19NIV:Though I am free and belong to no one, I have made myself a slave to everyone, to win as many as possible.
20NIV:To the Jews I became like a Jew, to win the Jews. To those under the law I became like one under the law (though I myself am not under the law), so as to win those under the law.
21NIV:To those not having the law I became like one not having the law (though I am not free from God’s law but am under Christ’s law), so as to win those not having the law.
22NIV:To the weak I became weak, to win the weak. I have become all things to all people so that by all possible means I might save some.
23NIV:I do all this for the sake of the gospel, that I may share in its blessings.
24NIV:Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize.
25NIV:Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.
26NIV:Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air.
27NIV:No, I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.

Questions to Consider
  • Read verse 22. Who have you become like, in order to win them for Christ? How much effort did that take?
  • When was the last time you were mocked for sharing your faith in Jesus? How much of a threat to devil are you?

Motion Points
  • Disciplining yourself to memorise Bible verses that will come handy when you're sharing your faith.
  • Teaming up with other young Christians for the purpose of going out and witnessing together. Why not do it right now?

Hymn for Today
Church of God, Beloved and Chosen by F.R Havergal

Church of God, beloved and chosen,
Church of Christ for whom He died,
Claim thy gifts and praise the Giver,
Ye are washed and sanctified.
Sanctified by God the Father,
And by Jesus Christ His Son,
And by God the Holy Spirit,
Holy, Holy, Three in One.

By His will He sanctifieth,
By the Spirit's power within;
By the loving hand that chasteneth
Fruits of righteousness to win;
By His truth and by His promise,
By the Word, His gift unpriced,
By His own blood, and by union
With the risen life of Christ.

Holiness by faith in Jesus,
Not by effort of thine own,
Sin's dominion crushed and broken
By the power of grace alone,
God's own holiness within thee,
His own beauty on thy brow:
This shall be thy pilgrim brightness,
This thy blessed portion now.

He will sanctify thee wholly;
Body, spirit, soul shall be
Blameless till thy Savior's coming
In His glorious majesty!
He hath perfected forever
Those whom He hath sanctified;
Spotless, glorious, and holy,
Is the Church, His chosen Bride.
Further reading
  • Matthew 10:1-15
  • Isaiah 61:1-3

Friday, January 25, 2019

Honest To God

Nothing ordinary ever seemed to happen to Rob. His stories of extravagant family holidays, chance meetings with famous people and doing unbelievable feats were too amazing to be true. When Tim McCormick questioned the facts of his stories, Rob would get defensive. He would insist he was being truthful by saying, “Honest to God!”

Finally, Tim caught Rob in blatant lie. One Saturday morning he phoned to tell Tim he had got a ticket to a rock concert that had been sold out for more than two months . He wouldn't show Tim the ticket for fear of loosing it, he said , nor would he explain how he got it. Yet he tried to make Tim believe that he had an “ inside” source. He promised to tell him all about the concert the next day.

But that nigth, during the very much hour of the concert, Tim sported Rob with his family at a superstore more than fifty kilometres from the concert site! Tim told him he had seen him at the superstore, he finally admitted that he had exaggerated a little but he had bought the group's latest album, he said.

Tim's friendship with Rob crumbled after that. Read 1 Corinthians 5:6-8 yo see what Paul thought about boasting.

Bible Text
1 Corinthians 5:2-13

2ESV:And you are arrogant! Ought you not rather to mourn? Let him who has done this be removed from among you.
3ESV:For though absent in body, I am present in spirit; and as if present, I have already pronounced judgment on the one who did such a thing.
4ESV:When you are assembled in the name of the Lord Jesus and my spirit is present, with the power of our Lord Jesus,
5ESV:you are to deliver this man to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, so that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord.
6ESV:Your boasting is not good. Do you not know that a little leaven leavens the whole lump?
7ESV:Cleanse out the old leaven that you may be a new lump, as you really are unleavened. For Christ, our Passover lamb, has been sacrificed.
8ESV:Let us therefore celebrate the festival, not with the old leaven, the leaven of malice and evil, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.
9ESV:I wrote to you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people—
10ESV:not at all meaning the sexually immoral of this world, or the greedy and swindlers, or idolaters, since then you would need to go out of the world.
11ESV:But now I am writing to you not to associate with anyone who bears the name of brother if he is guilty of sexual immorality or greed, or is an idolater, reviler, drunkard, or swindler—not even to eat with such a one.
12ESV:For what have I to do with judging outsiders? Is it not those inside the church whom you are to judge?
13ESV:God judges those outside. “Purge the evil person from among you.”

Questions to Consider
  • How was Rob's boasting like the list that Paul writes about?
  • What effects has boasting had in your relationship?

Motion Points
  • Listing specific ways in which people can keep themselves from boasting.
  • Asking God to show you if have been boasting. If so, tell the modest truth to the people you boasted to.

Hymn for Today
God Leads Us Along by George A. Young

In shady, green pastures, so rich and so sweet,
God leads His dear children along;
Where the water's cool flow bathes the weary one's feet,
God leads His dear children along.

Some through the waters, some through the flood,
Some through the fire, but all through the blood;
Some through great sorrow, but God gives a song,
In the night season and all the day long.

Sometimes on the mount where the sun shines so bright,
God leads His dear children along;
Sometimes in the valley, in darkest of night,
God leads His dear children along.

Though sorrows befall us and evils oppose,
God leads His dear children along;
Through grace we can conquer, defeat all our foes,
God leads His dear children along.

Away from the mire, and away from the clay,
God leads His dear children along;
Away up in glory, eternity's day,
God leads His dear children along.
Further Reading
  • Jeremiah 9:23-24
  • James 4:13-17
  • Isaiah 10:8-15


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