Wednesday, January 27, 2010

The Other Side

"And the same day, when the even was come, he saith unto them, Let us pass over unto the other side." Mark 4:35

If you recognized this story from the scripture above, you'll remember that this was the time when Jesus and His disciples were in the boat heading to Gadara and a storm came up that threatened to destroy them. When they got in the boat, Jesus told them that they were going to the other side. When He told them this, He was telling them what His plan was-- go to the other side. He also was giving them a command to take Him to the other side of the sea. This was the "mission" that Jesus had given them. It was their task to get Jesus to the other side so that He could fulfill the plan of the Father once He got there.

I said it was "their task to get Jesus there" because we all know that boats don't guide themselves. Some one has to be hoisting the sails and attending the oars. Boats don't just "drift" and happen to make their intended destination. Some one has to be piloting them.

Jesus had a plan to fulfill and the disciples were to take Him to the place where it could be fulfilled. Now, I have been very wordy to get to this point. We have a task- or assignment- to "take Jesus to the other side". It is our job to get Him from one place to another (Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria and the uttermost parts of the world) so that God's plan might be fulfilled in the earth. He gave us the commission and He gave us the message-- Jesus.

Are you fulfilling the commission you have been given? Are you taking Jesus to the "other side"- to your family, friends, coworkers, neighbors, classmates, etc.? Are you letting the storms of life, the trying times or the fierce winds stop you? They will come, they did that evening to Jesus and His disciples. The enemy is always trying to kill and destroy us, but we can't let anything stop us. We have to keep going on in faith and rebuke the hindering circumstances.

When they got to the other side, a man who was possessed with a legion of demons was gloriously delivered, set free and restored to "life". People like him still exist today- the lost, the bound, the infirmed, the hopeless and so on. They need Jesus and someone needs to take Him to them.

Have a great day. You have been given the commission to "take Jesus to the other side"...are you?

For further reading:
Mark 4:35-39
Acts 1:8
Mark 16:15
Romans 10:14

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Coffee Break is a morning devotional written by Lorraine Ezell

Follow Close

"Then took they him, and led him, and brought him into the high priest's house. And Peter followed afar off." Luke 22:54

The first time we saw Peter in the scriptures he wasn't following Jesus. The rest of the time we see him in scripture he is following Jesus closely. But in this verse he is following Him afar off. After Jesus' resurrection and the rest of Peter's life he followed Jesus more closely than he had followed Him when He was alive.

Let's bring this issue of following Jesus home- on a more personal, individual level. Are you following Jesus? How closely are you following Him? Are you following Him afar off? Are you endeavoring to follow Him more closely today than ever before? Are you following Him daily? Are you following Him only when it is convenient for you? Are you following Him on Sundays but not on the other six days of the week? Are you following Him when things are going well only? Or when things are going bad too?

When Jesus called His disciples to follow Him, He meant that they were to follow Him close enough for Him to tell that they were following Him. That goes for us modern day disciples too. As a matter of fact, if you aren't following Him, you really aren't His disciple, because that's what a disciple does.... follows.

Check your walk and relationship with the Lord today. Honestly examine your life to see where, or if, you are following Jesus. It was never His desire for you to follow afar off. He wants to be "up close and personal" with you.

Have a great day. The only true way to follow Jesus is closely, and growing closer every day.

For further reading:
Luke 5:4-11
Matthew 16:24
John 10:27
John 12:26
John 21:14-19
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Coffee Break is a morning devotional written by Lorraine Ezell


Hebrews 10:35. Cast not away therefore your confidence, which hath great recompence of reward. 36. For ye have need of patience, that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise.

Thought for the Day: Your Reward is Too Great To Forfeit

Reflection for the Day: Perseverance And Patience Are Necessary

As Paul faced the many obstacles during his life he recognized the need of both patience and perseverance. He could neither compromise or give up. He knew he must, with confidence, go forward. He knew that if he would lose his confidence he would also forfeit his reward. Both perseverance and patience must be exercised.
Some of your future is clear to you while other parts are yet unknown. The key to your success is your ability to go forward with confidence. As you face obstacles you must exercise both perseverance and patience. Do not be discouraged for you have a great reward awaiting you.

Count Up The Cost!

It's a wonderful day to be a child of God. Have you ever found yourself upset with the Lord? Have you ever felt God owed you more than you currently have? Are you mad at the Lord now? So often in our lives, we find ourselves housing anger and bitterness toward the Lord. We feel as though God dealt us an unfair hand. You are angry. Very disappointed. You begin to tell God about all the many wonderful things you gave up to serve Him. Have you been there? Are you there now?

Today, I have been commissioned to come and minister to you. My friend, Count Up The Cost! If you sit down and analyze your life, you would realize God has been better to you than you have ever been to yourself. He has been better to you than you have been to Him. He has protected you when you made foolish decisions. He has positioned angels to watch over your everyday affairs. The Bible declares in Psalms 91:11 - For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways. Count Up The Cost! Think about the places you went, the people you hung with, and the things you use to do. Think about the club parties and hotels you stayed in. Think about the debt you owed and the bills you had. Think about the lies and rumors you heard. Think about the sicknesses and diseases you could have experienced. Think about the healing and deliverance you enjoyed. Truth be told, you owe God more than He owes you.

My brother, my sister, why are you angry with the Lord? What has He done wrong? The Bible declares in Psalms 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 them that walk uprightly. The Lord would never withhold any good thing from you. You should thank the Lord for this. Count Up The Cost! There are some things you constantly pray for, but the Lord knows it is not a good thing for you to have. He knows it looks good to your natural eye, but it will cause you more pain than victory.

Thought to Remember: You should thank God for everything, not just the things you want.

Scripture Reading for the Day: Psalms 100:4

May God Bless you at Your point of need!Minister Darrick D. McGhee

Be Not Deceived By The Enemy!

It’s a wonderful day to be a child of God. Have you ever fallen for a person because they told you they were someone they're really not? Have you ever gone places you thought God sent you? Are you currently somewhere you thought God sent you? Are you currently with someone you thought you could not live without? So often in our lives, we find ourselves engaged in activities that are ungodly. You thought you were doing the right thing, but to your surprise you are not. You had good intentions, but made the wrong decisions. Your emotions were heavily involved. Have you been there? Are you there now?

Today, I have been commissioned to come and minister to you. My friend, Be Not Deceived By the enemy! The Bible declares in Galatians 6:7 - Be not deceived; God is not mocked: … The Lord receives no glory when you are tempted or deceived. God loves you too much to play games with you or your life. The Bible declares in James 1:13 - Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth He any man: The enemy is out to ruin you. The enemy desires to destroy everything God has invested within you. Your life’s purpose is under attack by the enemy’s camp. You must be careful and prayerful. You must not allow your emotions to control your behavior. You have to be spirit led, not emotionally led. The enemy will work off of your emotions. When you display an interest in something or someone, the enemy will attempt to use that to weaken you. Be Not Deceived By the enemy!

My brother, my sister, your life is important. God has formed and created you for His glory. Do not allow the enemy to steal your faith, kill your dreams or destroy your anointing. The Bible declares in John 10:10 - The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. Be Not Deceived By the enemy! When you get sick, he wants you to think you will die. When you lose your job, he wants you to worry about your bills. When you experience marital difficulties, he wants you to contemplate divorce. When you preach, teach, or sing well, he wants you to become arrogant. Sometimes, he will use people to sing your praises. Be Not Deceived By the enemy! Thought to Remember: The devil is a defeated foe (enemy).

Scripture Reading for the Day: Romans 8:37

May God Bless you at Your point of need!
Minister Darrick D. McGhee

Tuesday, January 12, 2010


"O Lord of hosts, blessed is the man that trusteth in thee." Psalm 84:12

A couple of months ago my sister had neck surgery. She has gone back to work and is driving. Occasionally, she still has soreness in her neck from the surgery and doesn't have full range of motion. One day I had something I needed to give her. We both were in town so we decided to just meet somewhere. She was coming from the bank and I was driving by so we pulled into parking spots to meet. I got out and went to her vehicle to give her what I had for her. This happened to be one of the days she was having some pain when she turned her neck. When we had finished our meeting and as she started to back out of the parking spot, she asked me if anything was coming and was it clear for her to back out. I directed her to back out when the coast was clear and stood there in the street motioning for her to go backwards. She never looked back, she never tried to turn around, she just took my word for it that nothing was coming and backed out into the street.

My sister never once hesitated to back into the street without looking when I directed her to because she trusted me. She knew that I was not going to direct her into a situation that would hurt her. She knew that I would not steer her wrong. She knows I love her and would not let her do something that would put her in harm's way. She knew that if I said the street was safe for her to backup, she could backup with no fear of something happening to her. She trusted me totally.

How trusting are we of God? Do we trust the fact of His love for us? Do we trust that He won't "steer us wrong"? Do we trust His word when He speaks to us? Do we trust that what He does in our lives is something that will not harm us? Do we trust that He has our best interest at heart, always? Do we trust that He knows what He is doing in our lives even when we can't see it for ourselves? Are we totally dependent upon His word to navigate us through places because we can't do it for ourselves? Do we trust that all He desires for us is good and that He is working all things together for our good?

If we can trust a person because we know that person loves us, cares about us and will not do us harm, how much more should we trust our Heavenly Father when He says something to us because He loves us more than we can even fathom.

Have a great day. Do you trust God to lead you in the right way, even when you can't see that way for yourself?

For further reading:
Psalm 118:8
Proverbs 3:5
Psalm 73:28
Psalm 115:11
Isaiah 26:3

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Coffee Break is a morning devotional written by Lorraine Ezell

God's Promises

"For all the promises of God in him are yea, and in him Amen, unto the glory of God by us." 2 Corinthians 1:20

When a person makes us a promise, we expect him to keep it. Usually, we have no doubt that they won't. So, I ask you, "Why do we act differently concerning the promises of God?". If we can believe a person who has no control over circumstances that might hinder him from keeping his promise to do what he says he'll do, why do we find it so hard to believe that God- who does have control and can remove obstacles and hindrances- will keep the promises He has made to us?

"God also bound himself with an oath, so that those who received the promise could be perfectly sure that he would never change his mind. So God has given both his promise and his oath. These two things are unchangeable because it is impossible for God to lie. Therefore, we who have fled to him for refuge can have great confidence as we hold to the hope that lies before us." (Hebrews 6:17,18- NLT) The difference in man's promises and God's promises is:
1) Man doesn't always have the means, or resources, to fulfill his promise; God does.
2) Man has no control over factors that might hinder him from fulfilling it; God is in total control.
3) Man is limited in his ability; God is unlimited.
4) Man isn't always faithful; God is always faithful.
5) Man has good intentions but not always able to fulfill them; God's intentions always come to pass.
6) Man can lie; God cannot.
7) God holds Himself accountable to do what He has promised; man will often excuse himself from his obligation to fulfill his promise.
8) Men makes promises to appease, knowing they can't fulfill them; God never appeases anyone.
9) Man sometimes forgets that he made a promise; God never forgets!
So why do we find it easier to believe people than we do to believe God?

It's because of WHO God is that we can trust Him to do exactly what He said He would do and keep His promises to us. He is NOT a man, and He is NOT like man. He is God who is able, who is trustworthy, who is faithful, who cannot lie, who will uphold His word even above His own name. If we can trust people to keep their word to us, how much more should we be trusting God to keep His.

Have a great day. God is a promise keeper... so why aren't we trusting Him to keep His promises?

For further reading:
Psalm 119:89
Psalm 105:42
Psalm 138:2
2 Peter 1:4

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Coffee Break is a morning devotional written by Lorraine Ezell

Seeing Grace

"Who, when he came, and had seen the grace of God, was glad, and exhorted them all, that with purpose of heart they would cleave unto the Lord." Acts 11:23

Grace is like the wind, you can't see it but you can feel its effects. Or perhaps you can "see" it. Personally, when I look in the mirror each morning, I "see" God's grace. I can see the grace of God in my life from the beginning of the day until the end. I see His unmerited favor on my life. I can see that He has given me something, and so much, that I don't deserve.

It was God's grace that woke me up this morning. It was His grace that gave me life and breath again today. His grace puts health in my body. It was His grace that protected and kept me safe through the night. God's grace put a roof over my head, clothes on my back, shoes on my feet, food on my table. It's God's grace that allows me to sit here and share these devotionals with you.

God's grace gives me strength in weakness, comfort in sorrow, peace during times of confusion, wisdom to make the right decisions, help in time of trouble. His grace gives me joy and gladness. The Apostle Paul put it this way, "I am what I am but by the grace of God"... and may I add, "I have what I have but by the grace of God".

The greatest gift of grace that I see upon my life was given to me when Jesus went to Calvary. He provided salvation for me because I could have never obtained it any other way. I couldn't earn it, I couldn't work hard enough to receive it, I could never be good enough. Salvation came to me through His grace and when I received what He did as the payment for my sins grace was imparted to my life.

I rejoice this morning because I can see God's grace upon my life each and everyday and I know that when I stand before Him one day as the Judge of the universe, grace will still be standing with me and I will hear those words- "enter thou into the joy of thy lord".

Have a great day. Take time today to see and acknowledge the grace of God that has been bestowed upon your life.

For further reading:
Romans 4:16
Romans 5:15
Romans 11:6
Ephesians 2:5,8
1 Corinthians 15:10

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Coffee Break is a morning devotional written by Lorraine Ezell

Hear The Truth

"For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; and they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables." 2 Timothy 4:3,4

What is this "sound doctrine" that he is talking about? It's the "truth". Paul told Timothy that a time would come when people won't want to hear the truth. I think that time has come-- people don't want to hear the truth. They want to hear what they want to hear. People want to be told what they want to hear. They don't want to be told otherwise.

The thing about the "truth" is that it doesn't always tell you "good things",- it doesn't always tell you what you want to hear. Jesus often told people what they didn't want to hear. The rich young ruler didn't want to hear that he had to sell everything and follow Jesus. Peter didn't want to hear that he was speaking under the influence of the devil. The disciples didn't want to hear that they had "no faith". David didn't want to hear God's word through the prophet Nathan that he was the guilty party. The Israelites didn't want to hear that they would be in captivity for seventy years.

When we don't want to hear the truth- especially through God's word- we are choosing to live by lies and deception. We are choosing to live a life "off course". We are choosing darkness instead of light. We are choosing to live in a state of confusion and defeat. We are placing ourselves outside of safe boundaries.

The truth is not always easy to hear, especially when it points out our faults and mistakes, and tells us that we were wrong, and brings correction to us. The truth is often hard to swallow, but so are some medicines. But we "choke" them down because we know that they are good for us and will bring healing to our bodies. Hum... if we are willing to take a pill prescribed by a physician/man in order to get better, why do we have such a hard time wanting to take the "pill" of God's truth that will make us much more than just better?

Have a great day. Hearing the truth may not be pleasant, but it is so good for you.

For further reading:
John 8:32
2 Samuel 12
Matthew 16:23; 19:16-22
Mark 4:40
John 17:17; 12:46-48

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Coffee Break is a morning devotional written by Lorraine Ezell

Lord, I Need Guidance

It’s a wonderful day to be a child of God. Have you ever found yourself in a dilemma? Your will versus God’s will? You wanted to do something that God said not to do? You wanted to go somewhere but God said do not? It is very hard to handle, especially when you refuse to submit to the Lord. So often in our lives, our desires do not compliment God’s Word. Because our flesh wants what it wants, when it wants it, submitting to God’s will and instructions prove challenging at times. It sounds like a wonderful idea, but we know it is not of God. You feel stuck. You feel trapped. You think if you hold out long enough, maybe God will accept your will over His own will. Have you been there? Are you there now?

Today, I have been commissioned to come and minister to you. As a child of God, it is very important that we seek our Father’s approval. Many times what we see [naturally] differs from what the Lord sees for us [spiritually]. We see nice cars, nice homes, nice looking people, but we never see destruction. We never realize how priceless our peace is until it is gone. Now you are in a dilemma. Your will versus God’s will. In your current position, you need to stop and say, “Lord, I Need Guidance!“ The Bible declares in Psalms 37:23 - The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD: and he delighteth in his way. In your life, the dilemma is not as bad as you think it is. It can all change instantly. How? You must be willing to submit and surrender your will to the Lord’s will. Always know, your will can never be superior to God’s will.

My brother, my sister, release yourself to the Lord. Begin to pray, Lord, I Need Guidance! I need help with my life. I need you to guide my every step. The Bible declares in Proverbs 16:9 - A man’s heart deviseth his way: but the LORD directeth his steps. You can have your life planned out in increments. You can establish five year goals for yourself. You can declare your own major(s) in college. You can date the person you think you want to marry. But you must always know one important thing, if it is not the Lord’s will, change will definitely take place. Lord, I Need Guidance! I am going in the wrong direction. Help Me! The Bible declares in 1 Peter 2:21 - For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps:

Thought to Remember: Let God lead and you follow.

Scripture Reading for the Day: Jeremiah 10:23

May God Bless you at Your point of need!
Minister Darrick D. McGhee

Grace Is Enough

"And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me." 2 Corinthians 12:9

For the last couple of days I have had a chorus playing over and over in my thoughts. The words that I keep hearing are- "Your grace is enough; Your grace is enough for me". I am so glad for God's grace; it is enough for whatever we may be going through.

This morning, I don't know what you are facing- tragedy, problems in a relationship, unruly children, a demanding boss, financial stress or any one of a million other situations- but I want to remind you that "God's Grace is Enough"! That means that grace is all you need to make it through. It has been said that if God brings you to it, He will bring you through it. He brings you through it by His grace. Grace is the vessel that will carry you through the most difficult trial. It will reach into the lowest valley. It will shine as the noonday sun in the darkest area. It will conqueror the strongest adversary. It will bring down the tallest giant. It is a bridge of hope for the hopeless, the light at the end of the tunnel, a shelter in the time of storm. It brings a peace that passes understanding. It gives strength to run through a troop and leap over a wall. It defeats the power and stronghold the enemy thought he had over you. It causes you to rejoice when you see nothing to rejoice about and gives you the ability to give thanks in all things.

Are you trying to find an answer this morning or a way of escape? Are you trying to find a solution? Are you trying to find a "way out"? Sometimes your answer and what you need is grace. Like the Lord said to Paul, "My grace is sufficient".

Have a great day. His grace is enough-- it's all we need, regardless of the situation.

For further reading:
Zechariah 4:7
John 1:15-17
Romans 3:23,24; 16:24

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Coffee Break is a morning devotional written by Lorraine Ezell

He Makes The Way

"But lift thou up thy rod, and stretch out thine hand over the sea, and divide it: and the children of Israel shall go on dry ground through the midst of the sea." Exodus 14:16

Have you ever come to a place where you can't seem to go forward and are at a stand still? I reach that place many mornings when I sit down to write these devotionals. I pray and seek the Lord for a word to share with you and it doesn't come as easily at times as it does at other times. But it's in those times that I am reminded that if God calls us to do something He won't leave us "hanging".

God called Moses to lead His people out of Egypt. Moses obeyed the call of God and then found himself facing a Red Sea. All he could do was stand there- he couldn't go forward, there was no going back, he couldn't make the next step happen on his own, all he could do was place his entire dependency on the One who had called him to this task. Moses knew that if God had called him to do this, then He would make a way for him to be able to accomplish it.

Beloved, it is not up to us to "make it happen". There are some things that we can NEVER make happen. All Moses could do was trust and obey. He was not the Deliverer- he was the instrument that was used by THE Deliverer. The bottom line is that if God calls you to do it, He will be responsible to make a way for you to do what He has called you to do. Continue to seek Him, continue to listen to His instructions, continue to obey Him, continue to trust Him. Always remember that it is He who is accomplishing it through you, therefore, He will provide all that is needed to enable you to do it.

Have a great day. When God calls you to do something, He will give you everything you need to accomplish the task, so just trust Him.

For further reading:
Exodus 14
Philippians 4:19
Matthew 10:19

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Coffee Break is a morning devotional written by Lorraine Ezell

Weak Knees

"My knees are weak through fasting; and my flesh faileth of fatness." Psalm 109:24

The Psalmist said that his knees were weak because of his fasting (abstaining from food). I want to talk about another fasting that brings weakness, not to our bodies, but to our spirits.

The Bible calls its words bread, milk and honey. When we aren't reading it, studying it and meditating upon it, we are doing what I call "spiritual fasting". God's word feeds us spiritually. When we neglect it and go without it, we aren't "eating". The result? "Weak knees".

What does that mean? People who have weak knees have a hard time moving around. People who have weak knees also have a hard time standing. People with weak knees are prone to falls. Likewise, having weak knees, spiritually speaking, makes it hard for us to move around- it makes it hard for us to "walk in the Spirit". It makes it hard for us to "stand" when the enemy comes against us and easy to fall.

"Weak knees" is also an idiom that expresses a strong emotion about something or someone- this emotion is often fear. If you are fasting God's word, you will have "weak knees", which means you will be operating in fear instead of faith, you'll be led by your emotions instead of by the Spirit, you'll be intimidated instead of having boldness, you will always feel defeated because you won't have a "spiritual leg" to stand on because your knees will "buckle" under you, and the result will be a fall.

There is a way to have "strong knees" instead of weak ones so that you can stand, move freely in the spirit, keep from falling and be full of faith. The remedy: EAT! You are going to have to "eat" God's word everyday.

Have a great day. Spiritual fasting causes spiritual weakness.

For further reading:
1 Peter 2:2
John 5:39
Psalm 119:11
John 6:63

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Coffee Break is a morning devotional written by Lorraine Ezell

How To Receive God's Word

"Open your ears to the words of his mouth."~Jeremiah 9:20

What attitude brings the greatest benefit when hearing or reading God's Word? Receive it as God's Word - not man's! It's propagated by us, but originated by Him. "When you received the word of God...from us, you welcomed it not as the word of men, but as it is...the word of God" (1Th 2:13 NKJV).

Here are four things you must always remember about your Bible: (a) It's authoritative. "They were astonished at His teaching, for His word was with authority...they were all amazed ...saying, 'What a word this is! For with authority and power He commands the unclean spirits, and they come out'" (Lk 4:32-36 NKJV). The forces of darkness around us must recognize and submit to God's authoritative Word. So stand on it! (b) It's creative. "By God's word the heavens existed and the earth was formed" (2Pe 3:5 NIV). His Word alone was enough to create all that exists. He doesn't have to strive or sweat, He just has to say it and it's done. So speak God's Word! (c) It's effective. "My word...will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it" (Isa 55:11 NIV). Every Word God speaks is on a mission and is guaranteed to accomplish it in accordance with His will, His strategy and His timing. So put God's Word to work! (d) It's dynamic. "The words I have spoken to you are spirit and they are life" (Jn 6:63 NIV). When you receive it as the Word of God, it produces life-changing results. It can't just sit there and do nothing, it must generate, for it is "the word of God, which also effectively works in you who believe" (1Th 2:13 NKJV)!

Morning Reflection

Matthew 8:2,3 And, behold, there came a leper and worshipped him, saying, Lord, if thou wilt, thou canst make me clean. And Jesus put forth his hand, and touched him saying, I will: be thou clean. And immediately his leprosy was cleaned.

Thought for the Day: Jesus Is Waiting For You To Ask For Something

Reflection for the Day: Your Prayer Will Bring Results

A man came to Jesus with a need. He wanted to be healed of his leprosy and he knew Jesus had the power to do it. As he worshipped the Lord he made his request known unto the Master. The Lord responded and made him clean.

So many of God's children have serious problems and yet have not sought the Lord's intervention. Jesus awaits your request. Go ahead and ask Him for what you need. Your prayer will bring results.

Keep Your Peace

"The wisdom that is from above is...peaceable." James 3:17 NKJV
Have you ever gotten into an argument before church and felt like a hypocrite during the entire service? Understand this: the Devil knows that God's Word can only be "sown in peace" (Jas 3:18), so he will do everything he can to keep you from receiving it and being blessed by it. That's why you must do whatever it takes to keep your peace. There's power in peace! If the Devil can't get you upset he has no power over you. He only gains control when you "lose it." He plans to get you upset in order to steal your peace, confuse you and make you run in circles. Don't let him.

James writes, "The wisdom that is from above is...peaceable." In The Message Eugene Peterson paraphrases this Scripture: "Real wisdom, God's wisdom, begins with a holy life and is characterized by getting along with others. It is gentle and reasonable, overflowing with mercy and blessings, not hot one day and cold the next, not two-faced. You can develop a healthy, robust community that lives right with God and enjoys its results only if you do the hard work of getting along with each other, treating each other with dignity and honor" (v. 17-18 TM). Notice, getting along with others can be "hard work."

So next time you get worked up about some issue, ask yourself, "What's the enemy trying to do here? If I give in to these emotions what will the result be?" When you're stressed out you lose your joy, and when you lose your joy you lose your strength because "the joy of the Lord is your strength" (Ne 8:10). So today, pray, exercise self-control, and keep your peace.