Saturday, October 20, 2018

October 20

There is a dead tree branch hanging over my yard. The tree has already begun to heal around the branch, but it can’t heal completely because the branch hasn’t broken off. So many things in nature teach us about ourselves. We all have scars as reminders of our past hurts. Emotional scars may be more significant than our physical scars and can be used to help others. However, unhealed emotions will bleed all over other people and cause them to receive gaping wounds too. The blood of emotions cut deep. If you think you have control over them, you’re wrong, we can all see them. They are revealed through your attitude, the words that come out of your mouth, and your thoughts and actions. I would call these compound fractures, because you’re not only broken, you’re bleeding. Stop lying to yourself by saying you don’t have a problem or an issue. If you can’t control your emotions, you have a problem. I could say this all day, but no one will hear it, you have to take this to God. Ask Him to heal you. He may send someone special to help you, a doctor, or a friend. Receive their help and stop denying that you need it.

fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. Isaiah 41:10

Friday, October 19, 2018

October 19

After months of rain, then record heat, I had not done very much in my yard. Mold and mildew were growing on the brick pavers and the wall of the garden. It was time to do a little sprucing up. I trimmed the hedges, cleared out some overgrown fern, and sprayed bleach on the pavers and the wall. I thought that the wall might need painting, but after a good dose of chlorine, it was sparkling clean. We are drawing near the time when Florida people will be able to comfortably enjoy the outdoors, and maybe have a fire in the fire pit and soak up some refreshing cool air. Even though we don’t have much of a season change here, we enjoy other things that remind us that there is something different in the atmosphere. This whole scenario is a reminder that we may not know the exact time for the Lord’s return, but there will be changes in the world that signal a nearness. My suggestion would be that you stay vigilant, and spruce up around the temple, cleaning, and polishing! Ready yourself for the call of the saints to join Him.

Behold, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, even those who pierced him, and all tribes of the earth will wail on account of him. Even so. Amen. Revelation 1:7

Thursday, October 18, 2018

October 18

I woke up to another song playing in my mind, “What can wash away my sin? Nothing but the blood of Jesus.” What I learned today is so good! When someone makes me mad, I always repeat the words “hot burning coals, hot burning coals.” It refers to the scriptures in Proverbs and Romans where it says “If your enemy is hungry, give him bread to eat, and if he is thirsty, give him water to drink, for you will heap burning coals on his head, and the LORD will reward you.” It reminds me to stay nice. Today, I learned that the hot coal burns away sin! In the vision of Isaiah a burning coal was touched to his mouth and the guilt of his sin was atoned for. What can wash away your sin? Nothing but the blood of Jesus! That coal is Jesus! So, when I pray for hot burning coals on someone's head, I’m praying for their salvation. Pray Jesus down on the head of your enemy. It’s the best thing you can do for yourself and for them.

Then one of the seraphim flew to me, having in his hand a burning coal that he had taken with tongs from the altar. And he touched my mouth and said: “Behold, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away, and your sin atoned for.” Isaiah 6:6-7

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

October 17

Don’t you love waking up with a song in your heart? I woke up singing “Come Alive in the River,” and it has set the tone for my day. One of my favorite portions of scripture is in Ezekiel, and his vision where he was led into the river, a very wide river, it was almost a mile before he reached an area where he was in over his head! In this vision the sea became fresh where the river poured out, was teaming with fish, the trees bear fruit every month, and their leaves are for healing. This river represents the message of the gospel! Are you being led, little by little into the river or are you going to jump in over your head and swim? I say go all in! Live it, breathe it, and become it! Jesus has given us an amazing life and we should take full advantage of all it has to offer. We have been set free and should live like free people. We have been washed and cleansed in the living water. Go deep and go all in for Jesus!

Again he measured a thousand, and it was a river that I could not pass through, for the water had risen. It was deep enough to swim in, a river that could not be passed through. Ezekiel 47:5

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

October 16

Our church is having a Harvest festival as an alternative to Halloween. As I was researching Bible stories that I could use as a theme for a game or booth, I came across a rather weird story about a creepy old bone yard. It’s the perfect story for this season, with all its ghoulish shenanigans, except that it might be too much for a carnival for little kids. However, it is the perfect story to explain how amazing God is and shows what He can do with a bunch of old bones. This, like all Old Testament stories, points to Jesus. It might not seem that way at first, but once you hear the whole story, you realize it’s about the resurrection of the dead, and those lifeless souls who are dry and dusty coming to the saving knowledge of Jesus. Not only that, but it is a commissioning of the servants to preach to the unsaved, though it might seem futile, we are to do just as Ezekiel did in this vision, and keep preaching to those lifeless bones in the hopes that God will breathe life into them. I find this to be very encouraging, especially when there are those we love who are stubborn and won’t submit to the authority of Jesus and accept Him as Savior. We must keep speaking life into them and commanding the slain to breathe. Go to your Bible and read this story, especially those of you who love Halloween and darker themes, because it still includes death and darkness, but with the focus being on life, which is what we, as Christ followers, are all about. This story is found in Ezekiel 37:1-14

Then he said to me, “Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel. Behold, they say, ‘Our bones are dried up, and our hope is lost; we are indeed cut off.’ Therefore prophesy, and say to them, Thus says the Lord GOD: Behold, I will open your graves and raise you from your graves, O my people. And I will bring you into the land of Israel. Ezekiel 37:11-12

Monday, October 15, 2018

October 15

I started my devotional three times this morning and kept running into a brick wall. Why am I not hearing from the Holy Spirit? Have I done something wrong? Am I hearing Him, but ignoring His voice? Am I so anxious and unsettled that my movement is causing a blockage? The truth is that it could be any of those things, or it could be none of those things. It could be that the atmosphere is heavy because Halloween is near. I saw bats coming out of my neighbor's house, which is very creepy. This can happen to you at any time, no matter what time of year it is. The key to breaking through this invisible barrier is to keep praying; it’s one of our weapons in spiritual warfare. You will always have times like this, just remember that there are battles going on that you know nothing about, and just because you can’t see it, doesn’t mean it’s not happening. Like this morning, I could feel it, but didn’t understand it. Remember Daniel and the battle that was fought in the heavens on his behalf? The point is to keep moving forward, don’t get discouraged. Repent, praise, pray, and get out your sword and cut through the thickness with the Word of God.

Then he said, “Do you know why I have come to you? But now I will return to fight against the prince of Persia; and when I go out, behold, the prince of Greece will come. Daniel 10:20

Sunday, October 14, 2018

October 14

When a hurricane has drawn down on your location and everything you have in this world is about to be tested, you begin to realize what is most important. When you look at the photos of the most recent devastation, you are humbled by how temporary this present life is and are reminded that there is something bigger than us out there. In minutes a healthy, well built city can become rubble, and lives can be lost. In light of that, what is the most important lesson we can learn? We must always be prepared for the inevitable. Most of us will not get off this planet without facing death, unless Jesus comes back today. The material things we have are not important in eternity, so we must take time to sow spiritual seeds. You see, when looking at homes and businesses demolished, those people facing that reality will be thankful for their lives and the lives of their family and friends. The ones who were lost, left only with the things stored in their hearts. This is why it is so important for us to love others, and share with them the most important gift of all, Jesus. 

Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap. For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life. And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up. So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith. Galatians 6:7-10