Friday, November 30, 2012

Life Revealed!

A prominent biographer was asked to write a history of the Duke of Wellington. He was assured that he would have full access to everything that remained in his home as well as everything that had been written about him previously.

He began his task with great enthusiasm and interest. He studied where he went, what he did, his favorite places to visit, his family background and who his friends were. He searched through trunks and diaries. And although he had a fairly good understanding of the Duke, he was not satisfied with his research.

One day, while searching through a drawer, he came across his checkbook. He began to study what the Duke spent his money on and was finally able to put together a complete picture of who he was.

“May you always be filled with the fruit of your salvation,” the Apostle Paul wrote. “Those good things that are produced in your life by Jesus Christ - for this will bring much glory and praise to God.” The fruit of our salvation is certainly reflected in how we invest the gifts that God has given us.

Our true character, who we really are, reveals the depth and intensity of our relationship with God. If we maintain a right relationship with Him and draw our spiritual nourishment from Him, others will find Him in everything we do. They will find His fingerprint on every page of our lives.

Prayer: Lord, as the author and finisher of our salvation, we ask You to be the beginning and end of our lives. May our lives reveal our submission to Your will. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Scripture for Today: Philippians 1:11 being filled with the fruits of righteousness which are by Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Love At Work

The family completed reading their evening devotional together and knelt to pray. Mary Jane, the youngest of the children, always prayed first. After a moment’s hesitation she said, “You know God, there are only four people in our family, and there are some days, like today, that I don’t love any of them. How can You love everybody all of the time?”

Fortunately, God loves us no matter how we act or who we are. And we see His love revealed in the life of Jesus.

Recall His patience with His disciples. In spite of their faults, unfaithfulness and ignorance, He never gave up on them. He was able to overlook their past lives and their present limitations and see the role they would fulfill in establishing His Kingdom on earth.

Remember His kindness, His compassionate gentleness and His thoughtfulness when he took a few loaves and some fish and fed the hungry multitude. He did not say, “I’ll feed you if you listen carefully to what I have to say.” Nor did He satisfy Himself and His disciples first while others waited to get the leftovers. No, He extended His love to those in need because He wanted them to understand a love that put others first.

Jesus took every opportunity to reach out to anyone and everyone and set the example of what true love is. He is indeed the essence of love – God’s love – a love that is gentle, patient, kind, thoughtful and constant.

Prayer: Fill our hearts, Heavenly Father, with a love that has no limits, is unconditional, patient in times of stress and expects nothing in return for being helpful. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Scripture for Today: 1 John 3:16 This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Thunderstorms And Rainbows

The beauty of a rainbow after the dark clouds of a thunderstorm is a reminder of God’s love, grace and mercy. But it takes rain and sunshine to bring the brilliant colors to life. Endless clouds and constant rain would be depressing and the sun shining by itself would scorch the earth but together they are a beautiful combination that reminds us of His promises.

We know that the love, grace and mercy of God are at work in our lives when, after a siege of grief, discouragement or suffering we sense God’s presence and peace more than we ever did. We realize, perhaps, in a more important way, that God is at work in everything - not random or isolated events that seem disconnected. And, moreover, He’s at work for our good.

Perhaps we need to remind ourselves that what happens is not always good. But, His Word states that it is for the good of those who love Him. God will bring us closer to His will and the plan that He has for us in every experience that He brings into our lives. Nothing, absolutely nothing, ever happens to us by mistake. Either God is in control of our lives or He is not. Either He is a sovereign God or a God Who cannot be trusted.

Notice that He is not working to make us happy or wealthy or popular. But He is working through His Holy Spirit to conform or shape us into the image, the likeness of His Son. What more can we ask?

Prayer: We struggle - even resist - Lord, those times when we feel our lives are dominated by pain or loneliness. May we remember, however, that You are at work in our lives and for our Good because we love and trust You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Scripture for Today: Romans 8:28 And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Looking Beyond The Clouds

James was having a difficult time getting his rain coat on before running to catch the bus for school. Struggling to get the buttons through the correct holes he said, “Mom, this is going to be a beautiful day!”

Puzzled, she asked, “How can you say that when it is pouring down rain outside?”

“Mom,” he said with a smile, “don’t forget the sun is just on the other side of the clouds waiting to peek out!”

Psalm 136 is a great resource and reminder for the difficult times in life when the heavens seem to disappear behind dark clouds. In it we are reminded of the greatness and wonder of God’s power and the reality of His enduring, everlasting love. Every verse, after giving a reason to give thanks, is concluded with the phrase, “His faithful love endures forever.”

There are days when one obstacle surfaces after another. Frustration overwhelms us and anger surfaces that surprise us. But God would have us to seek His peace and look at every obstacle as opportunities to call on Him for help and guidance.

There are times when tragedy strikes with no warning and we find ourselves facing life without the presence of a loved one. Grief becomes an overpowering force in our lives and it seems impossible to see beyond the moment. But God wants us to remember that He is our best source of peace and comfort and will sustain us.

Prayer: We give You thanks, Heavenly Father, for Your grace and mercy that comes to us through Your enduring love. Teach us to be thankful for everything! In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Scripture for Today: Psalm 136 Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever. (Read more…)

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Always Something

A visitor from Wisconsin was traveling through the rural roads of Georgia and noticed a fruit stand with a sign reading, “FRESH PEACHES.” Having heard of the large, sweet, juicy peaches of Georgia, he decided to stop and purchase a small basket to take on his journey.

Approaching the fruit stand he said to the farmer, “My goodness, these peaches are really small.”

“Yep,” replied the farmer with a nod.

“Well, I’ll take some anyway,” said the traveler.

A few moments later the traveler returned. He approached the farmer once again, this time looking angry. “These peaches are not only small,” he said sternly, “but they are hard and tasteless!”

“Well,” said the farmer quietly, “you ought to be thankful you didn’t buy a bushel full!”

“No matter what happens,” Paul wrote, “always be thankful, for this is God’s will for you when you belong to Christ Jesus.”

Far too often our thankfulness seems to depend on the circumstances in our lives. When “good” things happen, we rejoice - sometimes not even pausing to thank God. When “bad” things happen we complain and blame God.

Paul precedes “thankfulness” with a challenge to “be joyful” and to “keep praying.” And that’s the key: If we are always joyful and in constant prayer, we will see God at work in our lives and “be thankful” for His gifts.

Prayer: Help us, Father, to realize the importance of expressing our gratitude for all of Your gifts. May we learn to look beyond the immediate to Your eternal plan. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Scripture for Today: 1 Thessalonians 5:18 in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Faith: Facts Or Feelings?

Faith is very much an important part of every moment of every day of our lives. Yet, we rarely think about our “applied faith.”

Think, for a moment, about driving a vehicle. We turn on the ignition, start the car and begin to drive. Without thinking about it, we have faith that when we apply the brakes the car will stop. When we approach a chair and sit down, we have faith that the chair will support us and will not collapse. When we drink water, we have faith that it will quench our thirst. Faith comes from facts that “things” will always do what they have always done. It is believing that I can depend on something or someone because of its record of reliability.

“Faith,” says the author of Hebrews, “is the confident assurance that what we hope for is going to happen.” Like brakes stopping a car, a chair holding us up or water quenching our thirst.

So it with our faith in God. Because God has always done what He said He was going to do, we can believe that He will continue to honor His Word throughout eternity. When He called the universe into existence, it happened. When He promised a Savior, He “gave His only Son” to be our Savior.

The beginning of our faith is in the character of God and the end of our faith is in the work of Christ. Our faith is established in the Word of God – “for by grace are we saved through faith – not of ourselves, but from God.”

Prayer: We thank you, Lord, for Your faithfulness in honoring Your Word and keeping Your promises. May our faith continue to grow as we come to know You better. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Scripture for Today: Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Almost Does Not Count

There was a small huddle going on at home plate. Lucy and Linus of the Peanuts comic strip were having an intense discussion with their coach, Charlie Brown.

“Our team,” said Charlie, “has lost every game this season. There’s nothing good about our team!”

“But,” protested Lucy, “Schroeder almost hit a home run. We almost won a couple of games. Once we almost made a double play.”

Linus interrupted Lucy and added, “If it’s any consolation to you, Charlie Brown, we led the league in ‘almosts.’”

But there is no column in record books listed as “almosts.” There are wins and loses and records set and records that have been broken. But never an “almost!”

“Almost” carries with it the idea that if we had more time, more energy, more opportunities, more money or “more of something” our lives would be completely different. While life may impose limits on us, God does not! Whatever He has He freely gives.

The Psalmist said, “No good thing will the Lord withhold from those who do what is right.” He did not say that God will almost bless us, or almost answer our prayers or almost provide for our needs or almost give us good things. Not at all.

When we do “what is right,” God will give us “good things!” Not almost give, but will give if we do right.

Prayer: Help us, Lord, to follow the example of Your Son and “do what is right” at all times and in all places as He did. May we do what is right, not almost right! In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Scripture for Today: Psalm 84:11 For the Lord God is a sun and shield; The Lord will give grace and glory; No good thing will He withhold From those who walk uprightly.

Friday, November 16, 2012

The Foolishness Of Hiding

A telemarketer phoned a home just as it was time for the evening meal. Little Gordy answered the phone, and in a hushed voice barely above a whisper, said, “Hello.”

Asked the caller, “Is your Mom home?”

“Yes,” came the barely audible answer. “But she’s busy.”

“Well,” he continued, “how about your Dad.”

“He’s here,” said Little Gordy. “But he’s busy, too.”

“Well, what are they doing?” came the next question.

“Looking for me,” he whispered. “I’m hiding because I don’t want to eat dinner because I don’t like fish.”

Little Gordy serves as a reminder to me of how I try to hide from God when He wants me to do something that I think is unpleasant. It could be that I hear of an opportunity to serve Him or see someone in need whom I can help. I know that He’s looking for me to take advantage of this opportunity that is before me. And I know that what He wants me to do is not all that difficult. I also know that sooner or later I am going to have to face Him and admit “what is.”

When God calls us to be His children He also calls us to serve Him. And when He calls us to serve Him, He will provide all that we need and protect us, too.

Prayer: Father, You not only created each of us but have called us by our very own name to do things that only we can do. May we always be ready to hear Your call. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Scripture for Today: Isaiah 43:1-2 But now, thus says the Lord, who created you, O Jacob, And He who formed you, O Israel: “Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by your name; You are Mine. (Read more...)

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Instant Change

The old jail had served its purpose for many years. Age finally overcame the obsolete structure and it was condemned. The city council had several special meetings to discuss the new jail and finally insisted on the following requirements:

1. The new jail must be built on the site of the old jail.
2. The new jail must be built with material salvaged from the old jail.
3. The old jail must be used until the new jail was built.

When these demands were placed on the ballot, the voters were so confused that they did not know what to do. They thought that the changes could not be made.

When God saves and changes us, however, it is very different. “Those who become Christians,” Paul wrote, “become new persons. They are not the same anymore for the old life is gone. A new life has begun!” How wonderful! God, instantaneously, changes us from the inside out. He gives us a brand new life and we are no longer the same old persons. We are not re-formed or re-invented or re-educated - we are re-generated, re-deemed and re-created. In other words we are new creations!

When Christ comes into our hearts and lives, we begin a new life in Him and through Him. We begin a new life, ruled by a new King, living in a new Kingdom.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, we are overwhelmed with what happens when we surrender our lives to You as our Lord. May our lives reflect that we are a new creation in You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Scripture for Today: 2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Unreal Expectations

It was the end of their first month of marriage. The husband sat quietly looking at a slice of half-eaten bread and in a voice filled with discouragement said, “I wish you could make bread like my mother.”

Without a moment’s hesitation she responded, “And I wish you could make dough like my father!”

It is natural for us to have expectations of others - especially family members and friends. Doing “good things” for others is what Christians are expected to do when we see someone in need. Often, however, our expectations reflect greed and self-centeredness and go beyond what we have any right to expect.

Paul, in writing of God-type-love had something important to say: “Love,” he said, “is patient and does not demand its own endures through every circumstance.”

The type of love Paul is writing about seems to be the opposite of what we usually think of when we want something. We usually want what we want when we want it. And when we don’t get what we want, we “develop an attitude.”

Paul also wrote, “Let this mind - or attitude - be in you which was also in Christ Jesus.” When we make unreal expectations of others, it reflects a self-centered and greedy person - just the opposite of our Savior.

God expects us to have the same “attitude” toward others as Jesus did: one of humility and service.

Prayer: Fill our hearts, Lord, with the love that filled the heart of Jesus. May we see others as He saw them - as individuals He loved and served and wanted to save. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Scripture for Today: 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

Monday, November 12, 2012

The Gift Of Adversity

A botanist once said that trees need the March winds. When asked why, he replied, “It is the winds that cause the trunks of trees to ‘flex’ and the branches to ‘sway.’ As the tree is ‘shaken’ it draws the sap up to nourish the new growth and sprouting leaves.”

James must have wanted us to understand that “trouble” in the life of the Christian has its value. He wrote, “...whenever trouble comes your way let it be an opportunity for joy!” He did not say, “If trouble comes your way...” And he did not say, “Should you happen to encounter any trouble in life...” No. He most assuredly says “whenever trouble comes your way” as though it is certain to happen. No doubt each of us can verify the fact that “trouble” comes with life!

However, along with the promise of “trouble” coming into our lives, James tells how we are to respond: “Let it be an opportunity for joy!” In other words, take advantage of the troubles in life and maintain a positive attitude! So, instead of pouting and asking why, James would encourage us to ask, “Lord, how can I take what You have brought into my life and use it to help others?”

How, after I have endured a great loss in my life, I can more easily understand the pain of one who is grieving and truly grieve with them. If my family and I have experienced the pain and anguish of cancer, I can walk and weep with those who are traveling this valley.

Prayer: Father, whenever we experience problems give us optimism and a cause for joy knowing that what comes into our lives is a gift from You to serve others. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Scripture for Today: James 1:2-4 My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, 3 knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. 4 But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Our Source Of Strength

In the early days of his ministry, Norman Vincent Peale once visited one of his professors. Noticing a look of discouragement on his face, the professor asked, “What’s the matter, son?”

“I have no feeling of power,” admitted Peale.

“Listen while I read a verse of Scripture.” He opened his Bible and read softly: “He gives power those who are tired and worn out; He offers strength to the weak. Even youth will become exhausted, and young men will give up. But those who wait upon the Lord will find new strength. They will fly high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint.”

Even the strongest person grows tired during a strenuous day or a difficult experience. Energy ebbs and fatigue takes over everyone from time to time. Each of us has discovered the limits of our endurance at one time or another.

But God’s power, strength and might can never be diminished or exhausted. He is never too weary or occupied or indifferent or uncaring to come to our rescue when we call humbly upon Him. These verses remind us that He alone is our source of strength if we turn to and call upon Him in our time of need.

But we are reminded to “wait.” We need to learn the practice of “resting” in Him and “depending” upon Him for His strength and power, knowing ours is limited.

Prayer: It is difficult, Father, to admit that we are not all powerful and all knowing as You are. May we come to realize our need for You to meet the demands of life. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Scripture for Today: Isaiah 40:29-31 He gives power to the weak, And to those who have no might He increases strength.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Fitness That Matters Most

Bear Bryant, the legendary football coach, was once informed that some of his players were griping and complaining about his strenuous workouts. Calling the team into their locker room he said quietly and with confidence, “Men, you can’t live soft all week and play tough on Saturday.”

Success in any athletic endeavor requires self-sacrifice and tough training routines. It conditions the athlete to endure fatigue and outlast the competition. It is often the difference between winning and losing, victory and defeat.

Paul often referred to the importance of physical training and winning. He was aware of its value. But in a letter to Timothy he established an important priority for Christians. “Physical exercise has some value,” he wrote, “but spiritual exercise is much more important for it promises a reward in both this life and the one to come.”

We spend much money on physical fitness. In fact, one major research firm in America estimated that as a nation, we spend five billion dollars annually on fitness programs and exercise equipment. Although physical health in very important we must always make spiritual health our main priority. Each day that we live we must invest some time in reading and studying His Word, in prayer and worshiping Him. God expects us to develop our “spiritual muscles” to overcome evil.

Prayer: Help us, Lord, to accept our responsibility to develop our spiritual resources by allowing Your power to work with us. May our faith grow stronger each day. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Scripture for Today: 2 Timothy 4:8 Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day, and not to me only but also to all who have loved His appearing.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Either Side Is OK With Me

It was his first pastorate after completing seminary. He loved his members and served them faithfully. Upon learning that one of the members of his church was in the hospital he hurried to visit her.

As he walked to her room, he asked a nurse if she resting comfortably. “No,” she responded, “we believe that she only has a few hours to live.”

The news disturbed him and he was visibly shaken. When he entered her room, the saintly lady recognized his fear. She looked at him compassionately and said, “Son, there’s nothing to be scared about. I’m just going to cross over Jordan, and my Father owns both sides of the river. Either side is O.K. with me!”

John wrote, “He will remove all of their sorrows and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. For the old world and its sorrows are gone! And the one sitting on the throne said, ‘Look, I am making all things new!’”

Presently, we live on the side of the river that is dominated by pain, suffering and sorrow. It is all we have experienced. God does indeed own it and we are fortunate that He is with us to comfort and sustain us on “this side of the river.”

But we can rejoice in the hope of a new creation: a new heaven and a new earth. Once again He will make all things perfect and complete - including us, His children. With joy we can look forward to that day!

Prayer: Lord, with our limited minds we cannot imagine what heaven will be like. So, we ask You to increase our faith and trust in You and our hope for tomorrow. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Scripture for Today: Revelation 21:3-5 And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.”

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Back To The Basics

A once successful football team experienced several successive losing seasons. The fans were unhappy and many stopped attending their games. So the owner decided it was time for a new coach. After a lengthy search, he located a leader whom he felt was up to the challenge – one who could inspire the players.

At the team’s first meeting he stood before the players and said, “Gentlemen, we are going back to the basics. We are going to start at the beginning.”

“This is a football,” he said forcefully – making certain that each of them knew how serious he was.

“Basics” are important for any endeavor in life. They provide the foundation for growth and expansion. They assure stability in times of distress and doubt and direction when the path seems uncertain. They enable one generation to pass on a heritage of guidance and hope to another and give structure to families and institutions.

Paul passed on a “basic” to young Timothy. He gave him a “solemn warning before God” to be faithful in his responsibilities to Christ. “Preach the Word!” he wrote. “Be persistent whether it is convenient or not. Patiently correct and encourage your people with good teaching,” he concluded.

That “warning” has never been more important than it is now. We who are His disciples must be willing to listen, hear, obey and follow His “basic” teachings.

Prayer: It is so easy, Father, to forget what matters most in life. Help us to accept and follow the “basics” of Your Word and live lives that are pleasing to You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Scripture for Today: 2 Timothy 4:1-2 Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching.

Monday, November 5, 2012

When Everything Else Fails...

His chin was resting on his chest and his hands gently folded in his lap. He sat quietly for several moments. Finally he said, “I’m at the end of my rope. I have no idea what to do next or where to go for help.”

“How wonderful,” replied his pastor with optimism in his voice. “Now you are ready for God to take control of your life!”

How blest we are when we finally come to the end of our resources and realize what we have in God!

Need courage? “Do not be afraid, for I am with you. Be not dismayed for I am your God. I will strengthen you and uphold you with my victorious right hand.”

Feel weak? “Now glory be to God! By His power at work within us, He is able to accomplish infinitely more than we would dare to ask!”

Want guidance? “And we can be confident that He will listen to us whenever we ask Him for anything in line within His will!”

Lack success? “Yet if I live, that means fruitful service for the Lord.”

Lost confidence? “It is better to trust the Lord than to put confidence in people.”

Enduring trials? “God blesses the people who patiently endure testing.”

Seeking rewards? “If we are faithful to the end…we will share in all that belongs to Christ!”

Prayer: Lord, how good it is to know that Your resources far exceed any need we may ever have. Your goodness and grace are beyond measure and always available. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Scripture for Today: Mark 10:27 But Jesus looked at them and said, “With men it is impossible, but not with God; for with God all things are possible.”

Friday, November 2, 2012

The Eyes Have It!

Little Marie shouted, “Mom, guess what?”

“I really don’t know – what?” replied her Mom as she kept loading the dishwasher.

“Mom,” pleaded Marie, “you’re not listening!”

“But I am,” answered her mother as she placed the dirty silver in the tray.

“But Mom,” she protested vigorously, “you’re not listening with your eyes!”

The Apostle Peter quoting David the Psalmist wrote, “The eyes of the Lord watch over those who do right; His ears are open to their cries for help!”This is a wonderful example of the promise that “the Word of the Lord endures forever.” It was good for David. It was good for Peter. And it is good for us. We need to remind ourselves constantly that God not only sees us but watches over us and that His ears are waiting for us to call upon Him – night or day.

Once, when talking to a young child, he grabbed my cheeks, pulled my face close to his, looked into my eyes and said, “I know you hear what I am saying but you are not listening to me!”

How different is our Heavenly Father. He not only sees us and hears us but constantly watches over us as a mother watches over, cares for and protects her new born child!

What a wonderful thought: God Himself, Creator and Sustainer of the universe, watching over us.

Prayer: How gracious You are, Heavenly Father, to watch over us day and night. We thank You for caring for us and meeting our needs often before we even ask. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Scripture for Today: 1 Peter 3:12 For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, And His ears are open to their prayers; But the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.”

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Sacrifice And Success

Ade Mae and Harry Day were cattle ranchers in Arizona. When it was time for their first child to be born, they had to travel over 200 miles to locate a doctor to assure a safe delivery for their child.

Immediately after her birth they brought Sandra to their humble home: an adobe house on the ranch. There was no electricity and no running water and there was no school within a reasonable driving distance. So, when Sandra turned four years old her mother began teaching her the “basics” at home.

Eventually it was necessary for Sandra to move to El Paso, Texas to begin her formal education in a public school. She lived with her grandmother during these critical, formative years and when she was old enough, attended a boarding school for girls.

After graduating from high school she went to Stanford University in California where she excelled as a student. After she completed her college education, she attended the law school at Stanford and served on the editorial staff of the school’s Law Review.

She was the first woman to serve as the majority leader in the Arizona Senate and was the first woman Supreme Court Justice of the United States. Her husband suffered from Alzheimer’s disease for over twenty years and she now works to end that disease.

Jesus said, “With God all things are possible.” Faith can turn our trials into triumphs if we follow Him.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, may we be willing to look beyond what is to what can be. Let us not be discouraged by the hardships in life knowing that You are there to lead and guide us. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Scripture for Today: Matthew 19:26 But Jesus looked at them and said to them, “With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”