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The Word for Today Daily Devotional for 2023


Saturday, December 2, 2023

Finding common ground (1)

‘I have become all things to all people, that by all means I might save some.’ 1 Corinthians 9:22 ESV

To influence someone, you must first connect with them. And to do that, you must look for common ground. Paul writes, ‘For though I am free from all men, I have made myself a servant to all, that I might win the more; and to the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might win Jews; to those who are under the law, as under the law, that I might win those who are under the law; to those who are without law, as without law (not being without law toward God, but under law toward Christ), that I might win those who are...More

Friday, December 1, 2023

Meditation for beginners

‘We have thought, O God, on Your lovingkindness...’ Psalm 48:9 NKJV

Hopefully, by now, you are convinced that the power that comes from meditating on God’s Word is a power you need in your life. But maybe you’re a beginner, and you need a starting point. You’re thinking, ‘Yes, I know I need to spend more time meditating on God’s Word, but how do I do it? Here are a few ideas to get you started:

1) Meditate on God’s blessings. ‘Bless the LORD, O my soul; and all that is within me, bless His holy name! Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits’ (Psalm 103:1-2 NKJV)....More

Thursday, November 30, 2023

Do what God says

‘The LORD came to Abram in a vision.’ Genesis 15:1 NKJV

When God gives you a vision for your life, He doesn’t give you all the details upfront. He simply says, ‘Don’t be afraid; just do what I say, and I will guide you and prosper you.’ What did Abram’s vision involve? ‘Now the LORD said to Abram, “Go from your country, And from your relatives And from your father's house, To the land which I will show you; And I will make you into a great nation, And I will bless you, And make your name great; And you shall be a blessing;’ (Genesis 12:1-2 NASB20). How old was Abram? ‘Now Abram was...More

Wednesday, November 29, 2023

Praying God’s promises (2)

‘Call to Me, and I will answer you.’ Jeremiah 33:3 NKJV

When you begin to pray scripturally-based prayers, you will get the answers you need. Here is why: the Bible is God’s Word, and He always keeps His Word. Here is how to pray:

1) When you don’t have the answer. ‘Call to me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know’ (Jeremiah 33:3).

2) When you’re worried and under stress. ‘Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid’ (John 14:27...More

Tuesday, November 28, 2023

Praying God’s promises (1)

‘If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you want and it will be done for you.’ John 15:7 CSB

According to one count, there are 3,573 promises in the Bible. That’s almost ten promises for each day of the year. When you know which of those promises apply to you, and you fulfil the conditions that go with them, you can literally begin to pray God’s promises into existence in your life (see John 15:7). Will your prayers be answered overnight? Some will; others won’t. ‘Be … followers of them who through faith and patience inherit the promises’ (Hebrews 6:12 KJV). The most powerful...More

Monday, November 27, 2023

Meditate on God’s Word

‘In His law he meditates day and night … and whatever he does shall prosper.’ Psalm 1:2-3 NKJV

Thomas à Kempis, an Augustian monk and author, and author, wrote, ‘If you wish to grow in your spiritual life, you must not allow yourself to be caught up in the workings of the world. You must find time alone, away from the noise and confusion, from the allure of power and wealth.’ You say, ‘Does that mean God doesn’t want me to set goals and achieve things in life?’ No, quite the opposite! The Bible says, ‘And in His law he meditates day and night. He shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of...More

Sunday, November 26, 2023

God will rescue you

‘We should not trust in ourselves but in God who raises the dead...’ 2 Corinthians 1:9 NKJV

Are you feeling hopeless about the situation you’re in and don’t know which way to turn? Maybe you’re struggling to find a reason to keep going, but you’re so tired and overwhelmed that you just want to give up. If that’s the case, you’re in a vulnerable place. Look out – Satan will try to convince you there must be sin in your life, or that you’re out of God’s will, or that He is unhappy with you because you have disobeyed Him in some area you’re unaware of. Don’t buy it! You can be in the centre...More

Saturday, November 25, 2023

The art of being a sheep (2)

‘The LORD is my shepherd, I lack nothing.’ Psalm 23:1 NIV

We need to know two things:

1) Our shepherd’s character. Jesus distinguished good shepherds from bad ones (see John 10:11-16). Bad shepherds look out for their own interests, not the welfare of the sheep. They’re unreliable; when a threat arises, they abandon the flock. But Jesus claimed, ‘I am the good shepherd’ (John 10:11 KJV). What makes Him good? ‘The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep’ (John 10:11 NKJV). Their needs and their security come before his own, and, if necessary, he will die for them. ‘I am the good...More

Friday, November 24, 2023

The art of being a sheep (1)

‘The LORD is my shepherd, I lack nothing.’ Psalm 23:1 NIV

Perhaps you memorised Psalm 23 as a child. The vivid visual images remain with us lifelong. Author Hannah Whitall Smith said, ‘What we all need is just to get back into the nursery again, and take up our childish verses once more, and, while reading them with the intelligence of our grown-up years, to believe them with all our old childish faith.’ As adults we become jaded, losing the simple joy that stress-filled lives require. We need to remember these three things:

1) Who our shepherd is – ‘The Lord’. He is the source of...More

Thursday, November 23, 2023

You are a wonder

‘I praise you because I am … wonderfully made.’ Psalm 139:14 NIV

Despite your aches and pains, you are a living, breathing, walking, talking wonder. The psalmist said, ‘You created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made’ (Psalm 139:13-14 NIV). One author explains: ‘Most of us take our eyesight for granted, but even the simplest of processes is divinely complex. The retina, for example, conducts close to ten billion calculations every second, and that is before an image even travels through the optic nerve to the visual...More

Wednesday, November 22, 2023

What makes you glad, sad, or mad?

‘To him who is afflicted, kindness should be shown.’ Job 6:14 NKJV

A pastor writes: ‘What makes you glad or sad or mad? What puts a holy smile on your face? What causes your spirit to sob uncontrollably? What makes you pound your fist on the table out of righteous indignation? Somewhere in the mixture of that gladness, sadness, and madness is your God-ordained passion. Or maybe we should say compassion, because you are feeling what God feels. And once you identify it, doing something about it isn’t optional. You can’t not do something about it.’ In 2006, American entrepreneur, Blake Mycoskie was...More

Tuesday, November 21, 2023

Pray for a ‘sympathy breakthrough’

‘Therefore, as God's chosen ones, holy and dearly loved, put on compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience,’ Colossians 3:12 CSB

The poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow wrote, ‘If we could read the secret history of our enemies, we should find in each man’s life sorrow and suffering enough to disarm all hostility.’ In his documentary on twentieth-century wars, Jonathan Glover refers to what he calls ‘sympathy breakthroughs’. Even in the situation of war, acts of compassion supersede the conflict. Most sympathy breakthroughs, according to Glover, are triggered by eye-to-eye contact, and that...More

Monday, November 20, 2023

Being friends with God (2)

‘If you are pleased with me, teach me your ways so I may know you...’ Exodus 33:13 NIV

Listen to more of Moses’ friendly talk with God: ‘If you are pleased with me, teach me your ways so I may know you and continue to find favour with you.’ Moses is in a national crisis that could end Israel’s relationship with God, and what is he praying for? Not, ‘God, I’m in a tough spot. You have to resolve this for me!’ But, ‘Teach me your ways so I may know you!’ Moses wants more than just to know God’s awesome works. His heart cries out to know God’s heart and what makes it tick – the inner ways...More

Sunday, November 19, 2023

Being friends with God (1)

‘I know you by name and you have found favour with me.’ Exodus 33:12 NIV

Moses talked with God like a friend, sharing what he felt and thought. And God wanted it that way. Here is how the conversation went: ‘Moses said to the LORD, “You have been telling me, ‘Lead these people,’… You have said, ‘I know you by name and you have found favour with me.’”’ (Exodus 33:12 NIV). Moses is mirroring back to God what God had previously said to him. Remember saying to your spouse or your best friend, ‘You were the one who said …’? That’s what Moses is doing here: reminding God of His own words....More

Saturday, November 18, 2023

You can’t have a testimony without a test

‘I will bring the one-third through the fire...and test them as gold is tested.’ Zechariah 13:9 NKJV

If you’re being tested today, you’re in good company! Job, the most righteous man on earth, was tested beyond what most of us will ever have to endure. And when he emerged, he told God, ‘I heard about you from others; now I have seen you’ (Job 42:5 CEV). In the heat of the furnace, you experience God up close and personal. Pastor Sheila Schuller Coleman says, ‘Some tests are intended to assess what we’ve learned; others are intended to teach. We learn our most profound lessons when we’re tested...More

Friday, November 17, 2023

Keep it simple

‘“And I will give you shepherds after My own heart, who will feed you with knowledge and understanding.”’ Jeremiah 3:15 ESV

Seeking to impress the congregation, a young seminary graduate incorporated the biggest words he could find into his Sunday-morning sermon. It was a disaster! Stepping down from the pulpit, he met an old preacher who said, ‘Son, you spoke over their heads.’ Irritated and defensive, the young seminarian said, ‘Then why don’t they stretch their necks?’ To which the old preacher replied, ‘Jesus said, “Feed my sheep,” not my giraffes!’ Whether you’re in a pulpit, a...More

Thursday, November 16, 2023

Pick the right people

‘These were...the mighty men whom David had.’ 1 Chronicles 11:10 NKJV

Success in any endeavour calls for surrounding yourself with the right people. That’s why you should always seek God’s input in your relationships. Rehoboam should have listened to the advice of his father Solomon’s wise and experienced inner circle. Instead, he heeded the advice of those who agreed with his own opinion – and it proved fatal. David, on the other hand, chose people who helped make him great. ‘Now these were the heads of the mighty men whom David had, who strengthened themselves with him in his kingdom, with all...More

Wednesday, November 15, 2023

Don’t burn out (3)

‘In returning and rest you shall be saved.’ Isaiah 30:15 NKJV

Burnout is characterised by disengagement and stress by over-engagement. In burnout, your emotions become blunted; stress makes them over-reactive. Burnout causes emotional damage; stress primarily causes physical damage. Burnout affects motivation and drive; stress affects your physical energy. Depression from burnout comes from a loss of hope and ideals; stress-related depression comes from your body’s need to conserve energy and protect itself. Burnout triggers helplessness and hopelessness; stress triggers urgency and hyperactivity. Burnout...More

Tuesday, November 14, 2023

Don’t burn out (2)

‘And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord who has enabled me, because He counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry,’ 1 Timothy 1:12 NKJV

Another form of burnout is ‘compassion fatigue’, and people helpers are the most vulnerable. Symptoms include the belief that you’re no longer effective, treating yourself and others with detachment, withdrawing from your responsibilities, avoiding social and interpersonal contact, and feeling ‘beaten’. If you’re a type-A personality to start with, you’re at even greater risk. One counsellor says driven people often ‘suffer from an ‘adrenaline addiction’...More

Monday, November 13, 2023

Don’t burn out (1)

‘Many claim to have unfailing love, but a faithful person who can find?’ Proverbs 20:6 NIV

A pastor writes about his experience with burnout: ‘The children had gone to school, my wife was off to work, and I did something I’d never done before. I turned the phone down, put a note on the door, and went back to bed. I was burned out. Within two months, I had resigned my ministry. Three out of four pastors report anger, depression, fear, and alienation. The reasons include a disparity between idealistic expectations and hard reality, lack of boundaries, workaholism, feelings of incompetence, conflict between...More

Sunday, November 12, 2023

Keep your hope alive (2)

‘Hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit.’ Romans 5:5 NKJV

American writer, Jon Walker, says: ‘I’ve struggled with my weight most of my life. I’ve dropped weight and put it back on. I’ve tried every diet and made up some of my own. I maintained a friendly battle with weight till I became extremely ill, and for a year, I was unable to walk beyond the mailbox. Needless to say, I gained more weight than ever and found myself facing a huge challenge. I needed to lose more pounds than there are days in a month. With age nipping at my heels, it...More

Saturday, November 11, 2023

Keep your hope alive (1)

‘We who have fled for refuge might … hold fast to the hope set before us.’ Hebrews 6:18 ESV

Does your situation look impossible? Are you getting ready to give up? Don’t! Emilie Batisse was seventy-nine when she was injured in a hit-and-run accident and wasn’t expected to live. When Norman Vincent Peale went to visit her, he noticed a row of brand-new poetry books that hadn’t been opened. When he asked her about them, she said, ‘I love poetry, but I haven’t read those … I’m saving them for my old age.’ Mrs Batisse lived to read those books many times, and when she eventually died at...More

Friday, November 10, 2023

God is good – all the time!

‘Oh, taste and see that the LORD is good; Blessed is the man who trusts in Him!’ Psalm 34:8 NKJV

What you believe about God is crucial to the quality of your life, especially in difficult times. So, starting today, tell yourself, ‘God is good – all the time,’ and keep saying it until it gets down into your spirit. What does it mean to be ‘good’? It means living up to the best and highest one knows. And since God always knows what’s best and highest, His goodness is beyond question. If God is good – genuinely, practically, consistently good – then your cup of well-being, security, peace,...More

Thursday, November 9, 2023

Your handbook for life!

‘The commands of the LORD are clear, giving insight for living.’ Psalm 19:8 NLT

The marquee outside a little country church read: ‘Jesus said …’ That’s it – nothing else! Obviously, the custodian was interrupted before finishing the job, leaving an incomplete message for passing drivers to fill in the blank. Doubtless, some would drive by, giving it little thought. The more biblically minded might search their memory for the right answer. Some might think the custodian missed an opportunity to proclaim words that can transform lives. Jesus said, ‘The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and...More

Wednesday, November 8, 2023

Love one another as Jesus loves you

‘By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.’ John 13:35 NKJV

While the Bible doesn’t give a description of what Jesus looks like, people have wrongly tried to portray Him in paintings or films. What Jesus looks like is not important. It’s what He represents that matters. In John 13, Jesus tells us what He is all about and what He wants us to be all about – and it’s love! In the upper room, Jesus recognised that His time was short. The cross was looming, Judas was about to betray Him, and He had to prepare His disciples to continue without Him. It’s like asking...More

Tuesday, November 7, 2023

Start living with purpose

‘A generous person will be prosperous...’ Proverbs 11:25 NASB20

One of the best ways to keep your life in balance and stay on track spiritually is to pass on what you know to others. The Bible says, ‘A generous person will be prosperous …’ (Proverbs 11:25 NASB20) As you pass along your insights, you will get more insights from God. Paul challenges Timothy, ‘The things which you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses, entrust these to faithful people who will be able to teach others also.’ (2 Timothy 2:2 NASB20) If you know people who haven’t discovered their God-given purpose in life...More

Monday, November 6, 2023

God can cancel your past (3)

‘It is finished.’ John 19:30 NIV

One of Christ’s last declarations from the cross was, It is finished. That phrase comprises just one word in Greek, tetelestai, meaning paid in full. It was the word merchants wrote on a bill when it was cancelled. It was also the word stamped on a document announcing that a prison sentence had been commuted. Jesus paid the price in full for every sin you have ever committed! ‘Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus’ (Romans 8:1 NIV). The question is, if God forgets your sin the second you confess it, don’t you think you should forget...More

Sunday, November 5, 2023

God can cancel your past (2)

‘I will forgive their wickedness, and I will never again remember their sins.’ Jeremiah 31:34 NLT

Have you ever watched children playing with an Etch A Sketch? If they make a mess of the picture, all they have to do is swipe it to erase it; then they can start all over again. This is how God handles the mistakes you have made; He wipes the slate clean. ‘… I will never again remember their sins’ (Jeremiah 31:34 NLT). This has to be one of the most wonderful statements in the Bible – that ‘God forgets’. When we admit our sins and ask God to forgive us, He cancels our past. He chooses to forget our...More

Saturday, November 4, 2023

God can cancel your past (1)

‘He cancelled the record of the charges against us.’ Colossians 2:14 NLT

Jesus ‘cancelled the record of the charges against us … by nailing it to the cross.’ The word ‘cancel’ means to remove, to neutralise, to offset something. Have you ever got most of the way through a project and wished you could start over? Suppose you were painting the lounge, and you stepped back and looked at the colour on the sample chart. On the wall, however, it doesn’t look the same. You wish you could redo it. Many of us feel that way about life, as one author describes it: ‘I’ve made so many mistakes. I wish I...More

Friday, November 3, 2023

Don’t compete, and don’t compare

‘He alone decides which gift each person should have.’ 1 Corinthians 12:11 NLT

In Scripture, the church is never described as a democracy. Certainly, every person deserves equal treatment in terms of kindness, love, and respect; but as our God-given assignments differ, so do our gifts. ‘It is the one and only Spirit who distributes all these gifts. He alone decides which gift each person should have’ (1 Corinthians 12:11 NLT). Pay close attention to the words ‘He alone decides.’ Parents want to see all their children succeed in life. But they also need to recognise that just as children’s individual...More

Thursday, November 2, 2023

Make Your Words Count

‘The words of a man’s mouth are deep waters; the wellspring of wisdom is a flowing brook.’ Proverbs 18:4 NKJV

When Solomon speaks of deep waters, he’s referring to the water at the bottom of the well that’s the cleanest and coolest. If you want to know what kind of water a well has, go down to the bottom. And if you want to know what’s in a person’s heart, listen to his or her words.

An old country farmer put it this way: ‘What’s down in the well always comes up in the bucket!’ One of the surest signs of wisdom and maturity is the ability to say the right thing, in the right way, at...More

Wednesday, November 1, 2023

Don’t be a mudslinger

‘The slingers surrounded and attacked it.’ 2 Kings 3:25 NKJV

In Old Testament times, ‘slingers’ were people who defeated others by slinging stones and blocking their wells by throwing mud and rocks into them – wells of water that were essential to their survival. Today, mudslingers are people who make malicious attacks against others. Now, chances are that you may have encountered some ‘mudslingers’ yourself, and even suffered at their hands. What should you do? Avoid them because they’re dangerous. You can’t mud wrestle without getting dirty. Not only will your opponent win – he will enjoy the...More

Tuesday, October 31, 2023

Your loved one is with the Lord

‘To be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord.’ 2 Corinthians 5:8 NKJV

Try as we might to avoid it, and as reluctant as we are to discuss it, each of us must release the hand of the one we love into the hand of the One who loves us most. But what happens when you die? What happens to Christians between their death and Christ’s return? Paul answers, ‘But we do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, about those who are asleep, that you may not grieve as others do who have no hope.’ (1 Thessalonians 4:13 ESV). Scripture is surprisingly quiet about what happens to Christians in the period...More

Monday, October 30, 2023

When God gives you a vision (2)

‘I was not disobedient unto the heavenly vision.’ Acts 26:19 KJV

When God gives you a vision:

1) It will interrupt you. Sometimes God will speak in a voice you can’t tune out. Other times, like Jonah, God will let you go to the bottom to get your attention. Either way, things won’t go right until you say yes to Him.

2) It will illuminate you. You may not like what God says. Ananias didn’t like going to pray for Saul of Tarsus, a man with the power to put Christians to death. But God said, ‘Go, for he is a chosen vessel … I will show him how many things he must suffer for My...More

Sunday, October 29, 2023

When God gives you a vision (1)

‘I was not disobedient unto the heavenly vision.’ Acts 26:19 KJV

Paul had a ‘heavenly vision’. But there are those who ‘… speak a vision of their own heart, not from the mouth of the LORD’ (Jeremiah 23:16 NKJV). So you must be sure you are operating according to God’s plan, not your own, or somebody else’s. The story of the Tower of Babel teaches us two things:

1) When people make up their mind to do something, they often succeed.

2) Succeeding doesn’t mean that you’re in the will of God. The word babel (confusion) means others can think you’re right, yet you’re...More

Saturday, October 28, 2023

‘I am disciplined and self-controlled’

‘For God has not given us a spirit of timidity, but of power and love and discipline.’ 2 Timothy 1:7 NASB

In order to be happy in life, you must start doing the right things and stop doing the wrong things. And one of the first things you must do is stop saying, ‘I just don’t have any self-control.’ Self-control is a choice, and the more you choose it, the stronger it becomes. And here is the best part: the power of self-control comes from God, not you. The Spirit gives us power, love, and discipline. It happens automatically as you spend time with God in prayer and His Word. ‘Listen carefully to my...More

Friday, October 27, 2023

Jesus is coming back again!

‘Come, Lord Jesus!’ Revelation 22:20 NKJV

The last promise and prayer in the Bible is, ‘He who testifies to these things says, “Surely I am coming quickly.” Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus!’ (Rev 22:20 NKJV) Revelation 22:20 And the last major prophecy concerning Christ’s return was fulfilled in 1948 when the nation of Israel was reborn (see Amos 9:14). Since then, the clock of Bible prophecy has been ticking and the countdown is on. Cynics and critics sometimes say, ‘Christians have been telling us for hundreds of years that Jesus will return, but it hasn’t happened.’ That is additional proof...More

Thursday, October 26, 2023

Sometimes forgiving requires focus and energy

‘I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead.’ Philippians 3:13 NLT

Forgiving someone who has hurt you deeply is one of the most difficult things you will ever be asked to do. You know you must forgive, for nursing a grudge is like nursing a baby; anything you feed and nurture will continue to grow. But that doesn’t make forgiving easy. Try to understand this: forgiveness is a decision, not an emotion. If you wait until you feel like forgiving, you risk remaining trapped in the torture of resentment. When Peter asked Jesus how often he should forgive someone who had...More

Wednesday, October 25, 2023

You can overcome your fears

‘Do not fear, for I am with you;...’ Isaiah 41:10 CSB

The first lady to win a Nobel Prize was French physicist Madame Marie Curie. She said, ‘Nothing in life is to be feared, only understood.’ So:

1) Get the facts about what you fear to take away the mystery and misinformation from it.

2) Instead of focusing on your phobia, focus on God’s promises: ‘Do not fear, for I am with you; do not be afraid, for I am your God. I will strengthen you; I will help you; I will hold on to you with my righteous right hand’ (Isaiah 41:10 CSB). Note the words ‘I will strengthen you’. As your...More

Tuesday, October 24, 2023

An amazing promise

‘Call to Me, and I will … show you … things, which you do not know.'’ Jeremiah 33:3 NKJV

The God of the universe said: ‘Call to Me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know’ (Jeremiah 33:3 NKJV). What do you think your chances are of getting through on the phone to a president or prime minister? Zero! Yet regardless of your education, sophistication, ethnic background, or financial status, you can talk to God and He will talk back to you. And He doesn’t just promise to answer your prayers but to ‘show you great and mighty things, which you do not know’....More

Monday, October 23, 2023

Not self-control but Spirit control

‘If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.’ Galatians 5:25 NKJV

Do you have an out-of-control appetite when it comes to money, food, nicotine, alcohol, drugs, sex, or … (you fill in the blank). Have your repeated efforts to gain control left you with a sense of shame, failure, and hopelessness? Have all your attempts at self-control failed? Try Spirit control! ‘Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish. …...More

Sunday, October 22, 2023

God has a good plan for you

‘I know the plans I have for you...’ Jeremiah 29:11 NLT

Read this Scripture: ‘“For I know the plans I have for you,” says the LORD. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. In those days when you pray, I will listen … I will end your captivity and restore your fortunes”’ (Jeremiah 29:11-12, 14 NLT). The Israelites went through a long period of suffering because of their sins – seventy years of captivity. But God said, ‘I still have a plan for you.’ Have you sinned and gone through a season of correction and now you’re wondering if God has turned His...More

Saturday, October 21, 2023

Don’t just pray, believe!

‘You can pray for anything, and if you believe … it will be yours.’ Mark 11:24 NLT

The Bible says, ‘Without faith it is impossible to please God …’ (Hebrews 11:6 NIV). God’s greatest desire is to be believed. You can pray regularly and ritually, and even feel closer to God as a result, yet not expect Him to answer your prayers or for your situation to change. Peter had been put in prison and sentenced to death, and his execution was scheduled for the next day. So, the church prayed all night for his release. And it happened miraculously. God put the guards to sleep, opened Peter’s prison door, and...More

Friday, October 20, 2023

Your prayers can change the situation

‘Remember Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, your servants, to whom you swore by your own self...’ Exodus 32:13 ESV

If you’re not sure your prayers can change the situation you’re in right now, read the story of Moses interceding with God not to destroy the Israelites because of the golden calf and committing idolatry: ‘But Moses sought the favor of the LORD his God … Remember your servants Abraham, Isaac, and Israel—you swore to them by yourself and declared, 'I will make your offspring as numerous as the stars of the sky and will give your offspring all this land that I have promised, and they will...More

Thursday, October 19, 2023

Don’t give in to resentment; forgive them

‘Resentment kills a fool.’ Job 5:2 NIV

For reasons known only to God and Satan, Job lost his money, his children, and his health. If ever a man had cause to be resentful, it was him. But Eliphaz advised him, ‘Resentment kills a fool.’ In other words, ‘The only thing that can hurt me more than what has already happened is allowing resentment to rule my mind and dictate my actions.’ You say, ‘But I want justice!’ How much justice? Imagine your enemy for a moment. Picture him strapped to a whipping post. The strong-armed man with a whip turns to you and asks, ‘How many lashes?’ And you give a...More

Wednesday, October 18, 2023

Spirit-filled living

‘Do not be drunk with wine…but be filled with the Spirit.’ Ephesians 5:18 NKJV

The Christian life isn’t only a changed life but an exchanged life. At the moment of conversion, we give our old life to God and He gives us a new life in its place. But He does more; He comes to live within us by the power of the Holy Spirit. Paul made the contrast between being drunk with wine and being filled with the Spirit. One causes you to be out of control, while the other enables you to be in control. One is counterproductive, while the other is productive. One makes you powerless, while the other empowers you. One...More

Tuesday, October 17, 2023

God’s plan for your money

‘You will be enriched in every way...’ 2 Corinthians 9:11 NLT

One church leader told his congregation, ‘The good news is, we have enough money here this morning to build a new church.’ Then he added, ‘The bad news is, it’s still in your pockets!’ Some of us grew up believing it was wrong to ask God for money because that was a sign of greed and selfishness. And it can be, but it doesn’t have to be. When you pray, ‘Lord, bless me financially so that I can give to your work and fulfil your plans,’ you’re in proper spiritual alignment with God. In part, the explosive growth of the New Testament...More

Monday, October 16, 2023

Dealing with death the right way

‘Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for You are with me...’ Psalm 23:4 NKJV

Here is the truth about death:

1) It’s a sure thing. The story is told of a hypochondriac who put these words on his gravestone: ‘Now maybe you’ll believe I was sick.’ Seriously, if you’re wise, you won’t obsess about death, but you will prepare for it.

2) It’s a sojourn. The word ‘walk’ means each step you take brings your departure date one day closer. The word ‘through’ tells you it’s only a temporary passage and not your final destination. The...More

Sunday, October 15, 2023

‘We know’

‘We know that all things work together for good to those who love God.’ Romans 8:28 NKJV

This is one of the most often quoted and comforting Scriptures in the Bible: ‘We know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose’ (Romans 8:28 NKJV). This verse is to believers; to redeemed children of God who love the Lord and walk according to His purposes and operate according to scriptural principles. Interestingly, the Bible translates our English word ‘know’ from a Greek word meaning we know ‘intuitively’. Something within us says,...More

Saturday, October 14, 2023

Getting the most out of your Bible (2)

‘The unfolding of your words gives light...’ Psalm 119:130 NIV

American President Woodrow Wilson said: ‘I am sorry for men who do not read the Bible every day; I wonder why they deprive themselves of the strength and of the pleasure. It is one of the most singular books in the world, for every time you open it, some old text that you have read a score of times suddenly beams with a new meaning. There is no other book that I know of, of which this is true; there is no other book that yields its meaning so personally, that seems to fit itself so intimately to the very spirit that is seeking its guidance.’ If...More

Friday, October 13, 2023

Getting the most out of your Bible (1)

‘Search for it as for hidden treasure.’ Proverbs 2:4 NIV

When you think about it, studying the Bible is like prospecting for gold or silver. It involves two things:

1) You must look for it. Solomon writes, ‘If you look for it as for silver and search for it as for hidden treasure, then you will understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God’ (Proverbs 2:4-5 NIV). Simply stepping into a mine and glancing around won’t cut it. If you want to get the gold or silver, you must be searching for it. Any miner will inform you that gold doesn’t strike you – you strike gold. The...More

Thursday, October 12, 2023

What babies know

‘The father shall make known Your truth to the children.’ Isaiah 38:19 NKJV

A researcher at Johns Hopkins University informed us that children as young as eight months old are capable of hearing and remembering words, good or bad. ‘Little ears are listening,’ said Dr Peter Juscyzk. Babies in this study, which appeared in the esteemed journal, Science, were exposed to three taped stories for about ten days. Two weeks afterwards, they were tested in a lab and clearly identified the words in the stories while failing to react to words they hadn’t heard. Professor Emerita Robin Chapman, a language specialist...More

Wednesday, October 11, 2023

Spiritual growth takes time

‘If it dies, it bears much fruit.’ John 12:24 ESV

God takes two days to grow a mushroom but sixty years to grow an oak tree. So, would you like to be a mushroom or an oak tree? Spiritual growth takes time. Have you been wondering, ‘Why is it taking me so long to improve? I am still struggling with many of my weaknesses.’ Why? Because spiritual growth, like natural growth, takes some time. The best fruit ripens gradually. Jesus said, ‘“Truly, truly … unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit’ (John 12:24 ESV). When Jesus says,...More

Tuesday, October 10, 2023

Are you totally committed?

‘He sought...God and worked wholeheartedly. And so he prospered.’ 2 Chronicles 31:21 NIV

Change, improvement, growth, success, and victory don’t happen because they’re admirable concepts or desirable options. No, they happen because you’re totally committed and willing to pay the price. When King Hezekiah came to the throne, Israel was in bad shape. The doors of God’s house were shut, the Law of the Lord was not being observed, and the people were worshipping the same gods as the heathen nations around them. If you’re a turnaround expert, you would benefit from studying Hezekiah’s life and his...More

Monday, October 9, 2023

God: the source of your confidence

‘Those who trust in the LORD … cannot be shaken...’ Psalm 125:1 NIV

People are naturally attracted to leaders who convey poise and self-assurance; they won’t follow one who lacks self-confidence. An excellent illustration of this is an incident that took place in Russia during an attempted coup. Army tanks encircled the government building that held President Boris Yeltsin and his pro-democracy supporters. As the army moved into position, Yeltsin strode from the building, climbed up on a tank, stared the commander in the eye, and thanked him for turning to the side of democracy. Later the commander...More

Sunday, October 8, 2023

Five leadership issues you must deal with

‘Then [Elisha] arose and followed Elijah, and became his servant.’ 1 Kings 19:21 NKJV

To get the job done right, you must surround yourself with the right people. That’s why good leaders are continually on the lookout for good people. But the person you get isn’t always determined by what you want but by who you are. In most instances, you attract people who possess many of the same qualities you do. Not only was Elisha like Elijah, he also wanted a double portion of the Spirit that was upon Elijah. Who you are, is who you will attract. It’s possible to go out and recruit people unlike yourself, but...More

Saturday, October 7, 2023

Learn to disagree, agreeably

‘Clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience.’ Colossians 3:12 NLT

John Gray wrote the best-selling book Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus. His underlying thesis is this: in order to get along with someone, you have to try and see life from their perspective. And that’s not easy. Paul writes: ‘Clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. Above all, clothe yourselves with love,...More

Friday, October 6, 2023

Putting the other guy first

‘Be devoted to one another in love. Honour one another above yourselves.’ Romans 12:10 NIV

American lecturer Ralph Waldo Emerson said, ‘There is no limit to what can be accomplished if it doesn’t matter who gets the credit.’ Most people know about Isaac Newton’s famed encounter with a falling apple; how he introduced the law of universal gravitation and revolutionised astronomical studies. But few people know that had it not been for a man called Edmond Halley, the world may never have heard of Newton. Halley was the one who urged Newton to think through his original theories, corrected his...More

Thursday, October 5, 2023

Downscale in order to upscale

‘One thing I have desired of the Lord, that will I seek …’ Psalm 27:4 NKJV

You may have to downscale materially to upscale spiritually. If owning things, maintaining them, and worrying about losing them is robbing you of the things that matter most like peace, joy, and fulfilment, consider simplifying your life. Downscale on the things that don’t matter, so you can upscale on the things that do. During her successful career as an opera singer, Jenny Lind, known as the ‘Swedish Nightingale’, became one of the wealthiest artists of all time. Yet she gave up her career at a time when she was singing her...More

Wednesday, October 4, 2023

Always be thankful to God

‘It is good to give thanks to the Lord.’ Psalm 92:1 NKJV

Journalist Fulton Oursler tells the story of an elderly nurse called Anna. She had attended Fulton’s birth, plus that of his mother. He honours her for teaching him the best lesson he ever learned about giving thanks and finding contentment: ‘I remember her as she sat at the kitchen table in our house; the hard, old, brown hands folded across her starched apron, the glistening eyes, and the husky old whispering voice, saying, “Much obliged, Lord, for my vittles.” I asked, “Anna, what’s a vittle?” “It’s what I’ve got to eat and drink...More

Tuesday, October 3, 2023

S.T.R.E.S.S. (3)

‘I am the Lord, the God of all flesh. Is there anything too hard for Me?’ Jeremiah 32:27 NKJV

Remember past victories. Notice how King Jehoshaphat prayed: ‘Are You not our God, who drove out the inhabitants of this land before Your people Israel, and gave it to the descendants of Abraham Your friend forever?’ (2 Chronicles 20:7 NKJV). If God has ever performed a miracle for you or anybody else, He can do it again. So, read His Word and strengthen your faith by recalling His great deeds.

Exalt God above the problem. ‘O LORD God of our fathers, are You not God in heaven, and do You not rule over...More

Monday, October 2, 2023

S.T.R.E.S.S. (2)

‘Position yourselves, stand still and see the salvation of the LORD, who is with you.’ 2 Chronicles 20:17 NKJV

Trust what God tells you. ‘You will not need to fight in this battle. Position yourselves, stand still and see the salvation of the LORD … Do not fear or be dismayed; tomorrow go out against them, for the LORD is with you’ (2 Chronicles 20:17 NKJV). God’s way of resolving our problems can frequently go against our logic. Maybe that is why we are hesitant to approach Him in certain matters. Why would God instruct Jehoshaphat’s army, which was clearly no match for three armies, to show up...More

Sunday, October 1, 2023

S.T.R.E.S.S. (1)

‘Can all your worries add a single moment to your life?’ Luke 12:25 NLT

King Jehoshaphat heard that he was about to be attacked by three different armies. Talk about stress! His response is the example you need to follow when life gets overwhelming. His story is told in 2 Chronicles 20. Using the word S.T.R.E.S.S., we learn the following lessons:

Seek God’s guidance. ‘And Jehoshaphat feared, and set himself to seek the LORD …’ (2 Chronicles 20:3 KJV). Years prior when his father, King Asa, faced a similar threat, he responded by collecting the silver and gold from the temple and his palace...More

Saturday, September 30, 2023

Lift the shield of faith

‘Hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil.’ Ephesians 6:16 NLT

Pay attention to what Satan is shooting at you: ‘fiery arrows’! He knows that if he can light the fires of worry and anxiety within you, he can immobilise and defeat you. And notice what God has given you to protect yourself: ‘the shield of faith’. But you have a part to play: ‘Hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil.’ A shield won’t help a soldier while it’s on the ground, or even at his side. He must lift it to cover himself from attack. The same goes for you. When the devil...More

Friday, September 29, 2023

Overcoming your shyness

‘A man who has friends must himself be friendly.’ Proverbs 18:24 NKJV

There are no shortcuts to overcoming shyness; you’re going to have to work at becoming comfortable being with people. But you can do it. Here are some sure-fire strategies that will help you make friends:

1) You can’t deny the fact that you’re shy, but the more you keep talking about it, the more you reinforce its control over you. ‘Wise words satisfy like a good meal; the right words bring satisfaction. The tongue can bring death or life; those who love to talk will reap the consequences’ (Proverbs 18:20-21 NLT). Why...More

Thursday, September 28, 2023

God is in control; trust Him

‘My hope is in You.’ Psalm 39:7 NKJV

Life seldom works out exactly the way we hope or think it will. When Job lost everything, he said, ‘I don’t have the strength to endure. I have nothing to live for … I am utterly helpless, without any chance of success’ (Job 6:11, 13 NLT). Yet, in the end, Job got back twice as much as he had lost. But the experiences and adversities he had gone through changed his attitude towards God profoundly. ‘I know that you can do all things; no purpose of yours can be thwarted … My ears have heard of you but now my eyes have seen you’ (Job 42:2, 5 NIV). What had Job...More

Wednesday, September 27, 2023

You must take responsibility for your life

‘We are each responsible for our own conduct.’ Galatians 6:5 NLT

Being accountable for yourself, your thoughts, and your actions is a very important part of being a contributing member of a relationship. But sometimes, we take things too far by assuming an unhealthy responsibility for others, and then using it as an excuse for not being accountable for ourselves and our own circumstances. For example, we blame an unplanned pregnancy for our failure to go to university. Or we blame our unhappiness on the fact that we stayed married for the sake of the children. We focus so much on other people and taking...More

Tuesday, September 26, 2023

Acknowledge your mistake

‘Whoever conceals their sins does not prosper.’ Proverbs 28:13 NIV

Mistakes are a part of life. Successful people acknowledge theirs, learn from them, and work to correct them. A study of 105 executives identified common characteristics shared by successful people, but one observation was particularly helpful. Successful people admit their mistakes and accept the consequences instead of blaming others. None of us enjoys reaping the consequences of our actions. When things go wrong, we have a natural tendency to look for someone to blame. It’s in our DNA. In the garden of Eden, when God asked Adam what he had...More

Monday, September 25, 2023

‘The Fear of the Lord’

‘In the fear of the Lord there is strong confidence.’ Proverbs 14:26 NASB

When you submit to God, you don’t have to be afraid of anything because He becomes your ‘refuge and strength’ (Psalm 46:1 KJV). Fearing God doesn’t mean being afraid He’s going to hurt you. He’s a good God! ‘The fear of the Lord’ just means you follow His directions and recognise His authority in all things. You’ve probably noticed there’s not a lot of respect for authority these days; we’ve developed the kind of mentality that says, ‘Nobody’s going to tell me what to do!’ But the Bible says, ‘In the fear of...More

Sunday, September 24, 2023

It’s time to move on!

‘Let us press on to maturity …’ Hebrews 6:1 NASB

Are you finding that the methods that previously worked are no longer effective for you? Maybe it’s a job you’ve outgrown, a relationship you need to re-examine, or a method you need to change. Regardless of what it is, don’t become so settled that you can’t let go and move on when you need to. They say the hermit crab looks for a shell that fits him and lives there until he outgrows it. At that point, he has to scurry along the ocean floor and find a bigger one – a process that repeats itself throughout his entire life.

So, here’s the...More

Saturday, September 23, 2023

Thinking outside ‘the religious box’ (2)

‘I didn’t come to call the righteous, but sinners.’ Mark 2:17 CSB

There is a difference between loving nonbelievers and loving their ways. Paul says, ‘I have become all things to all people, that by all means I might save some’ (1 Corinthians 9:22 ESV).’ So:

1) Be courteous. ‘Let your conversation be gracious and attractive so that you will have the right response for everyone.’ (Colossians 4:6 NLT).

2) Be genuine. ‘Let love be without hypocrisy.’ (Romans 12:9 CSB). Because Jesus found common ground with the woman at the well, she made peace with God and then brought her...More

Friday, September 22, 2023

Thinking outside ‘the religious box’ (1)

‘“I desire mercy and not sacrifice.” For I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance.’ Matthew 9:13 NKJV

Author Nicole Unice says the suspicions people have about Christians include, ‘They judge me. They are better than I am. They won’t approve of me. I won’t fit in with their religion. They are all serious and no fun. Jesus hung around enough parties for the Pharisees to accuse Him of being a drunkard. He befriended forbidden women. He interacted with people so He could introduce them to His Father. He broke through stereotypes and communicated God as He is – approachable,...More

Thursday, September 21, 2023

My daily faith confession (2)

‘Blessed be the Lord, who daily loads us with benefits.’ Psalm 68:19 NKJV

When you speak words of faith over your life based on the Scriptures, Jesus taught that you will ‘have whatever [you] say’ (see Mark 11:23). David refers to God’s blessings as ‘benefits’, and says that God ‘daily loads us with benefits’. Note the word ‘loads’. We’re not talking here about the capacity of a teacup but a dump truck! God is waiting, willing, and wanting to do these things for you.

That’s why the psalmist writes: ‘Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits: Who forgives all...More

Wednesday, September 20, 2023

My daily faith confession (1)

‘Whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them.’ NKJV

Jesus taught us that when we speak His Word in faith, we will have whatever we ask. That’s a powerful faith! When you speak God’s living Word over your situation, it’s like flipping a switch; His power is activated, and His promises start coming to pass in your life. So, begin each day by speaking the following Scriptures over your life:

1) ‘This is the day the LORD has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it’ (Psalm 118:24 NKJV). Confession: ‘Lord, thank You for the gift of this day. I...More

Tuesday, September 19, 2023

Evangelise or fossilise (2)

‘The Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved.’ Acts 2:47 NKJV

The church has only two options: evangelise or fossilise. When we fail to share our faith with those outside the church, we either end up in a holding pattern or in death throes. The New Testament church’s growth is described in these words: ‘The Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved.’ Not only did they influence every level of society, but their enemies said, ‘These who have turned the world upside down have come here too’ (Acts 17:6 NKJV).

If your church closed its doors tomorrow, would...More

Monday, September 18, 2023

Evangelise or fossilise (1)

‘You shall be witnesses to Me…’ Acts 1:8 NKJV

Jesus is the captain of our salvation. ‘For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings.’ (Hebrews 2:10 KJV). And before He went back to heaven, He gave us the game plan: ‘You shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth’ (Acts 1:8 NKJV). And since a person’s last words are some of their most important ones, it...More

Sunday, September 17, 2023

Start early

‘Train up a child in the way he should go.’ Proverbs 22:6 KJV

The Bible says, ‘Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it’ (Proverbs 22:6 KJV). Observe the word ‘child’. Whether you’re a parent, carer, teacher, or any other type of role model, you must begin early when:

1) Their will is flexible. A twig is much simpler to bend than a trunk. In the early years, a child’s will is like soft clay, malleable and flexible. You see, it’s when they’re young that you are to set their ways because when they grow older, their ways are set. The...More

Saturday, September 16, 2023

God blesses hard work, not laziness

‘The one who is unwilling to work shall not eat.’ 2 Thessalonians 3:10 NIV

Compassion without accountability is just indulgence. The Bible teaches that we have a responsibility to feed those who are truly hungry and can’t provide for themselves. But let’s face it; there are some folks who would rather go hungry than go to work. Solomon writes, ‘Laziness casts one into a deep sleep, and an idle person will suffer hunger’ (Proverbs 19:15 NKJV). Centuries later, the apostle Paul was even more explicit: ‘For even when we were with you, we gave you this rule: “The one who is unwilling to work shall not...More

Friday, September 15, 2023

Avoid strife

‘For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work.’ James 3:16 KJV

The apostle Paul writes: ‘Make my joy complete by thinking the same way, having the same love, united in spirit, intent on one purpose. Do nothing out of selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility consider others as more important than yourselves. Everyone should look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others’ (Philippians 2:2-4 CSB). Strife wreaks havoc in relationships. It often stems from an inflated ego and leads to comparing, competing, and condemning. James points that out:...More

Thursday, September 14, 2023

Think carefully before you speak

‘The one who guards his mouth protects his life;’ Proverbs 13:3 CSB

Here is a Bible verse we should all commit to memory: ‘The one who guards his mouth protects his life; the one who opens his lips invites his own ruin’ (Pro 13:3 CSB). Simply put, your tendency to speak without thinking will keep getting you into trouble.

The story is told of a vacuum cleaner salesman who had been given a remote rural area as his territory. He was going from farmhouse to farmhouse on his first day on the job, attempting to sell vacuum cleaners. When he arrived at one farmhouse, he knocked on the door and was met...More

Wednesday, September 13, 2023

Don’t be afraid to go

‘You must go … And the LORD, He is the One who goes before you.’ Deuteronomy 31:7-8 NKJV

When God tells you to go, remind yourself that every detail of your future is already known to Him. Centuries ago, when a mapmaker ran out of the known world before he ran out of parchment, he would frequently draw a dragon at the edge of the scroll. This was intended as a sign to explorers that they were entering unknown territory at their own risk. Many, however, didn’t regard the dragon as a mapmaker’s warning sign but instead as a prophecy. They foresaw disaster beyond the known worlds they traversed, and their...More

Tuesday, September 12, 2023

The two rules

‘From any tree of the garden you may freely eat.’ Genesis 2:16 NASB

Adam had the perfect job, perfect home, perfect marriage, and the perfect environment; all the things we strive for. So how did it come about? As a result of his relationship with God! God basically gave him two rules to live by: ‘From any tree of the garden you may freely eat; but from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for on the day that you eat from it you will certainly die’ (Genesis 2:16-17 NASB). So, the two rules are these:

1) With God, what you get back is always greater than what you give up....More

Monday, September 11, 2023

Grace and confidence

‘Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence.’ Hebrews 4:16 NIV

If you feel unworthy to approach God in prayer, stop and read these words: ‘Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need’ (Hebrews 4:16 NIV). The word grace means undeserved kindness, mercy, favour, and help when you need it. Notice three important things:

1) When you need grace, you can approach God with complete confidence. Why? Because you’re coming to a throne of grace and mercy, not a throne of judgment. All your sins...More

Sunday, September 10, 2023

Simplifying doesn’t have to be complicated

‘Do not worry about your life.’ Matthew 6:25 NKJV

We tend to complicate our lives unnecessarily. Jesus said: ‘Do not worry about your life … the birds … neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them’ (Matthew 6:25-26 NKJV). Charlie Shedd pastored a large church with many demands. He and his wife created this simplicity list:

Make sure you need to simplify. Your problem may be inertia … because you aren’t doing enough. Selfishness never simplifies – it complicates.

Remember why you’re here. Put God’s will first. You unclutter by having a...More

Saturday, September 9, 2023

What are they saying about you?

‘It is reported … that you and the Jews plan to rebel;’ Nehemiah 6:6 NKJV

To prevent Nehemiah from rebuilding Jerusalem’s walls, his enemies spread rumours about him. ‘It is reported among the nations, and Geshem says, that you and the Jews plan to rebel; therefore, according to these rumours, you are rebuilding the wall, that you may be their king’ (Nehemiah 6:6 NKJV). Now, you can’t control what people think or keep them from saying it, but you can determine your response. Nehemiah did: ‘I sent messengers to them, saying, “I am doing a great work, so that I cannot come down. Why should the work...More

Friday, September 8, 2023

Poured from experience to experience

‘And has not been emptied from vessel to vessel.’ Jeremiah 48:11 NKJV

God said, ‘Moab has been at ease from his youth; he has settled on his dregs, and has not been emptied from vessel to vessel … Therefore his taste remained in him, and his scent has not changed.’ (Jeremiah 48:11 NKJV) This Scripture paints two pictures for us; one is natural, and the other is spiritual. In the natural picture, we see how wine is made by being poured from one vessel into another. In the spiritual picture, we see how God changes us by pouring us from one experience into another. And just as in winemaking, when the wine...More

Thursday, September 7, 2023

The right people and the right environment

‘He put them all outside.’ Luke 8:54 NKJV

The Bible says: ‘Someone came from the ruler of the synagogue’s house, saying to him, “Your daughter is dead” … when Jesus heard it, He answered him, saying, “Do not be afraid; only believe, and she will be made well.” When He came into the house, He permitted no one to go in except Peter, James, and John, and the father and mother of the girl. Now all wept and mourned for her; but He said, “Do not weep; she is not dead, but sleeping.” And they ridiculed Him, knowing that she was dead. But He put them all outside, took her by the hand and called,...More

Wednesday, September 6, 2023

Hearing the ‘still small voice’

‘A still small voice … Elijah heard it.’ 1 Kings 19:12-13 NKJV

When Jezebel threatened Elijah’s life, he fled to a cave. And that’s when God said to him: ‘“Go out, and stand on the mountain before the LORD.” And behold, the LORD passed by, and a great and strong wind tore into the mountains and broke the rocks in pieces before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind; and after the wind an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake; and after the earthquake a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire; and after the fire a still small voice … Elijah heard it’ (vv. 11-13 NKJV). God can...More

Tuesday, September 5, 2023

Are you praying for your children?

‘Will there not be peace and truth at least in my days?’ 2 Kings 20:19 NKJV

The Bible says: ‘Then Isaiah said to Hezekiah, “Hear the word of the LORD: ‘Behold, the days are coming when all that is in your house, and what your fathers have accumulated … shall be carried to Babylon; nothing shall be left,’ says the LORD. ‘And they shall take away some of your sons who will descend from you, whom you will beget; and they shall be eunuchs in the palace of the king of Babylon.’” So Hezekiah said to Isaiah, “The word of the LORD which you have spoken is good!” For he said, “Will there not be...More

Monday, September 4, 2023

The cure for anxiety (4)

‘You have been a strength … to the needy in his distress.’ Isaiah 25:4 NKJV

When you start worrying about the future, recall what God has already brought you through. In situations you thought you wouldn’t survive, He caused you to thrive, right? Nothing can separate you from His love (see Romans 8:38-39). But your anxieties can rob you of the security His love brings. Are you the kind of person who wants to understand everything because it makes you feel in control? Are you tormented by your thoughts and constantly questioning your actions? Do you worry about what people might think before making...More

Sunday, September 3, 2023

The cure for anxiety (3)

‘So don't worry, saying, 'What will we eat?' or 'What will we drink?' or 'What will we wear?'’ Matthew 6:31 CSB

It’s good to have a goal for the future and a plan for reaching it. But it’s not good to project into the future and worry about all the things that could go wrong. That’s anxiety, and it should have no place in your mind as a redeemed child of God. ‘”So don't worry, saying, 'What will we eat?' or 'What will we drink?' or 'What will we wear?' For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first the kingdom of God and his...More

Saturday, September 2, 2023

The cure for anxiety (2)

‘Cast your burden on the Lord, and He will sustain you.’ Psalm 55:22 CSB

American author, Hannah Whitall Smith tells a story that took place about a hundred years ago, yet it’s as up-to-date as tomorrow morning’s newspaper. ‘A farmer with a horse and cart notices a man walking along with a heavy sack on his back, so he offers him a ride. The stranger accepts and climbs up onto the cart. But as they proceed down the road, he is still bowed beneath the weight of his sack. The farmer says, “Why don’t you set the sack down?” The stranger replies, “That would be too much to ask. I’m grateful that...More

Thursday, August 31, 2023

God’s amazing love for you

‘May you have the power to understand … how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is.’ Ephesians 3:18 NLT

Paul writes: ‘I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will empower you with inner strength through his Spirit. Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong. And may you have the power to understand … how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete …’ (Ephesians 3:16-19...More

Wednesday, August 30, 2023

Keep a positive attitude

‘A heart at peace gives life to the body.’ Proverbs 14:30 NIV

Keeping a positive attitude isn’t always easy; it requires mental discipline. Let’s face it, 95 per cent of what we see and hear on the news today is negative. And while you can’t bury your head in the sand, you must protect your mind against the gravitational pull of negative influences around you. This calls for constantly doing two things:

1. Arresting the wrong thoughts. ‘Casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ...More

Tuesday, August 29, 2023

Trust God, and do good

‘Trust in the LORD and do good; Live in the land and cultivate faithfulness.’ Psalm 37:3 NASB

Sometimes when we have problems, we withdraw from normal life and spend all our time obsessing and trying to solve them. We talk about them to anyone who will listen. All this is an unproductive activity that prevents us from doing what we should be doing, which is ‘doing good’. If you want to experience the benefits of God’s faithfulness, you must do two things:

1) ‘Trust in the Lord.’

2) ‘And do good.’

When we have problems, it feels counterintuitive to focus on...More

Monday, August 28, 2023

Pray for the desire to forgive

‘Restore me, and I will return, For You are the Lord my God’ Jeremiah 31:18 NKJV

When we have been hurt, our first instinct is to retaliate. We know it’s wrong because the Bible says we must forgive in order to be forgiven (see Mark 11:25). We also know that bitterness can hurt us physically and emotionally. But sometimes, we can’t bring ourselves to forgive, so we keep wrestling with it in our minds. Stop and think about what happens in a wrestling match. You focus on your opponent, clinging to them and trying to control them. Your aim is to put them on the mat and bring them into submission, and it...More

Sunday, August 27, 2023

Sin is bad for you

‘Beloved, if our heart does not condemn us, we have confidence toward God.’ 1 John 3:21 NKJV

When you knowingly sin, it puts your body under stress. There is actually no such thing as a ‘lie detector test’. The fact is, the test cannot determine if someone is lying. It simply measures how a person’s response to certain questions impacts their nervous system. God designed our system to glorify Him (see 1 Corinthians 6:19-20). So when you sin, it negatively impacts your body. Even if you have never taken a polygraph test, you can agree that when you have lied, you probably experienced an increase in your...More

Saturday, August 26, 2023

Do something!

‘Let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth.’ 1 John 3:18 NKJV

When a multimillionaire was asked how much money it takes to be happy, he replied, ‘Just a little more.’ Now let’s assume you’re not like that, and you care about others. Why are you not more involved in meeting their needs? ‘But whoever has this world's goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him? My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth.’ (1 John 3:17-18 NKJV). That Scripture could be reduced to two words: Do...More

Friday, August 25, 2023

You have only two options: forgiveness or bitterness

‘How often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him?’ Matthew 18:21 NKJV

The Bible says, ‘Then Peter came to Him and said, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? Up to seven times?” Jesus said to him … “up to seventy times seven”’ (Matthew 18:21-22 NKJV). Seventy times seven equals 490 times. And it’s your ‘brother’, someone you have to live or work with, whom you’re called to forgive. In essence, Jesus was saying, ‘Forgive, and keep on forgiving if you want to have a relationship with this person.’ Let’s face it, we all make mistakes because...More

Thursday, August 24, 2023

How to protect your family

‘“They are to take some of the blood and smear it on the sides and top of the doorframes of the houses...”’ Exodus 12:7 NLT

On the night of the Passover, God told Moses that the angel of death would come and eliminate all the firstborn males in Egypt. Then He gave a specific plan of protection to the children of Israel. He said each household must take a lamb and spread its blood ‘on the sides and top of the doorframes of the houses’. Try to imagine that! On the night of judgment, they were saved when the angel of death looked at their houses because they were ‘under’ the blood, ‘surrounded’ by...More

Wednesday, August 23, 2023

All you need to know

‘Be still, and know that I am God.’ Psalm 46:10 NIV

If Job had a weakness, it was his tongue. He talked excessively. Not that you could blame him. After being hit by calamity, there wasn’t a wall standing in his house or a loved one living. And his wife, empathetic soul that she was, told him to ‘Curse God, and die!’ (Job 2:9 NKJV). Then his four friends with the bedside manner of drill sergeants told him he had probably brought all this trouble on himself. We’re thirty-seven chapters into the book of Job before God speaks a word. Chapter 38 begins, ‘Then the LORD answered Job …’ (Job 38:1 KJV)....More

Tuesday, August 22, 2023

Pray for wisdom (4)

‘If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God.’ James 1:5 NKJV

Here is a time-tested and proven formula for obtaining wisdom:

1) Acknowledge that you need it. Benjamin Franklin, an American author and inventor, correctly said, ‘The doorstep to the temple of wisdom is a knowledge of your own ignorance.’

2) Go to the right source. ‘For the LORD gives wisdom’ (Proverbs 2:6 NKJV). He alone can give you true wisdom because He alone has true wisdom. Indeed, His wisdom makes ours look like foolishness. Paul says, ‘The foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom’ (1 Corinthians...More

Monday, August 21, 2023

Pray for wisdom (3)

‘The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom.’ Proverbs 4:7 NIV

Why does the Bible talk so much about Solomon’s wisdom? Because it’s not human wisdom raised to a supernatural height; it’s supernatural wisdom lowered to human understanding. Lest you think the water is too deep and wisdom is beyond you, listen to what Solomon, the wisest man in the world, said: ‘Do not forsake wisdom, and she will protect you; love her, and she will watch over you. The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom. Though it cost all you have, get understanding. Cherish her, and she will exalt you; embrace her, and she will...More

Sunday, August 20, 2023

Pray for wisdom (2)

‘For wisdom is better than jewels, and nothing desirable can equal it.’ Proverbs 8:11 CSB

When King Solomon asked God for wisdom instead of power, fame, or riches, ‘God said to Solomon, “Since this was in your heart, and you have not requested riches, wealth, or glory, or for the life of those who hate you, and you have not even requested long life, but you have requested for yourself wisdom and knowledge that you may judge my people over whom I have made you king, wisdom and knowledge are given to you. I will also give you riches, wealth, and glory, unlike what was given to the kings who were before you,...More

Saturday, August 19, 2023

Pray for wisdom (1)

‘Now give me wisdom.’ 2 Chronicles 1:10 NKJV

When King Solomon ascended to the throne, God said to him, ‘Ask! What shall I give you?’ (2 Chronicles 1:7 NKJV). Imagine: Solomon was given carte blanche by the One in whose dictionary the word impossible doesn’t exist. But there was a catch! God was testing Solomon to find out what was in his heart. An arrogant person would have asked for fame. A worldly person would have asked for wealth. A self-seeking person would have asked for power. What did Solomon ask God for? ‘Now give me wisdom.’ So, God granted Solomon’s request and gave him something more...More

Friday, August 18, 2023

Overcoming temptation

‘Temptation...is common to man.’ 1 Corinthians 10:13 NKJV

The Bible says, ‘God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it’ (1 Corinthians 10:13 NKJV). Our minds are like a hotel. The manager cannot keep someone from entering the lobby, but he can keep them from getting a room. And it’s the same with temptation. When God redeemed you, you became a regenerate spirit living in an unregenerate body. ‘And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of...More

Thursday, August 17, 2023

Stay excited about your relationship

‘Always be enraptured with her love.’ Proverbs 5:19 NKJV

If you’re married, think back to when you first met your husband or wife and fell in love. You thought about them day and night. You couldn’t wait to be together; you hung on every word they spoke. The relationship was stimulating and exciting because you engaged each other’s minds, excited each other’s emotions, and ignited each other’s imagination on a wide range of life’s topics. But numerous marriages don’t survive because they die of boredom. One partner gets involved in an affair, or the other becomes addicted to porn or some other...More

Wednesday, August 16, 2023

Work on your character

‘The righteous man walks in his integrity.’ Proverbs 20:7 NKJV

When the Bible speaks of integrity, it means having a good character. And good character sets boundaries. It may not always determine what you will do, but it always determines what you won’t do. Character lets you realise how much you’re willing to pay to get what you want. When someone in a relationship has no character, they’re dangerous. Proverbs 20:7 says, ‘The righteous man walks in his integrity; his children are blessed after him.’ Character doesn’t have to be in the spotlight, excessively running the show. And it doesn’t...More

Tuesday, August 15, 2023

When you lose a loved one

‘We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers and sisters, concerning those who are asleep,’ 1 Thessalonians 4:13 CSB

Do you remember the first time death forced you to say the final goodbye to a loved one? At the funeral you heard words like departed, passed on, gone ahead. These were unfamiliar terms. You wondered, ‘Departed to where? Passed on to what? Gone ahead for how long?’ When someone dies after a full life, you can accept that. But what if they die as a result of violence? Or after a long battle with illness? Now your dreams are buried as they lower the coffin into the ground. Paul writes: ‘We...More

Monday, August 14, 2023

Handling temptation (3)

‘Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.’ Matthew 6:13 NIV

In the Lord’s Prayer, Jesus taught us to pray, ‘Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.’ (Matthew 6:13 NIV) Understand this: Satan is always trying to lead you into temptation, whereas the Holy Spirit who lives within you is always trying to deliver you from temptation. It is informative that while the devil is named the tempter, he is also named the accuser. ‘For the accuser of our brothers and sisters, who accuses them before our God day and night, has been hurled down’ (Revelation 12:10 NIV)....More

Sunday, August 13, 2023

Handling temptation (2)

‘The joy of the LORD is your strength.’ Nehemiah 8:10 NIV

Ever notice when you’re hungry, everything on the menu looks good? Similarly, when your soul is dissatisfied, sin looks tempting. That’s why you must always be spiritually self-aware and monitor your level of soul satisfaction. On the dashboard of your car are lights that tell you how hot the engine is running or when you’re about to run out of oil. They’re sometimes referred to as ‘idiot lights’ because only an idiot would ignore them. The main light on the dashboard of your heart is your ‘soul-satisfaction’ light. That’s why in the...More

Saturday, August 12, 2023

Handling temptation (1)

‘When you are tempted, he will also provide a way out.’ 1 Corinthians 10:13 NIV

Jesus said, ‘A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he was attacked by robbers’ (Luke 10:30 NIV). Jerusalem represented the place of God’s favour, whereas Jericho was cursed by Joshua when God levelled its walls (see Joshua 6:26). The road connecting the two cities was teeming with robbers, so was this man’s intention to travel part of the way, then get off? The Bible doesn’t say, but one thing we do know is God goes to great lengths to keep us from going down the road to temptation and getting hurt. And...More

Friday, August 11, 2023

Worship your way through it

‘The lad and I will go yonder and worship, and we will come back to you.’ Genesis 22:5 NKJV

Imagine having to offer your child on an altar as a sacrifice to God. And God doesn’t tell you why! Here is what Abraham said to the two young men who accompanied him on the most difficult journey of his life: ‘Stay here … the lad and I will go yonder and worship, and we will come back to you.’ (Genesis 22:5 NKJV) Abraham’s commitment to God was unwavering: ‘I will worship my way through this and come back stronger!’ Worry and worship are total opposites. And we will be much happier when we learn to become...More

Thursday, August 10, 2023

‘Fix’ your mind and change your life

‘If there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.’ Philippians 4:8 ESV

Paul writes: ‘Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.’ (Philippians 4:8 ESV). If you are serious about wanting a better life, you must change the way you think. The best way to stop thinking about something is simply to think about something else. When you don’t enjoy a certain TV programme, what do you do? Switch channels! Does...More

Wednesday, August 9, 2023

The secret of self-control

‘Set your minds on the things that are above, not on the things that are on earth.’ Colossians 3:2 NASB

To have a disciplined life, you must have a disciplined mind. Jesus said Satan’s threefold purpose is to ‘steal, and to kill, and to destroy’ (John 10:10 KJV). And you forget it at your own peril! In your own strength, you’re no match for Satan, but God will give you the strength to overcome his strategies and exercise self-control. And the Bible tells us how: ‘Set your minds on the things that are above, not on the things that are on earth.’ (Colossians 3:2 NASB) Note the words ‘set your...More

Tuesday, August 8, 2023

Commit to the relationship (4)

‘Can two walk together, unless they are agreed?’ Amos 3:3 NKJV

Benjamin Franklin’s formula for a happy marriage was this: ‘Keep your eyes wide open before marriage, half shut afterwards.’ One of the reasons marriages end in divorce is because we see only what we want to see. And if we saw obvious faults that could destroy the relationship, we allowed our heart to overrule our head and thought, ‘He or she will change after I marry them.’ What you turn a blind eye to today, you forfeit the right to complain about tomorrow. So if you’re wise, you will do these two things before you make the decision...More

Monday, August 7, 2023

Commit to the relationship (3)

‘Now Jonathan again caused David to vow, because he loved him.’ 1 Samuel 20:17 NKJV

For a relationship to succeed, both parties must be totally committed to it. Today let’s look at some more of the reasons why we may be afraid to commit.

1) Consider whether you have real feelings for your partner or whether you are biding your time until somebody better comes along. In other words, be honest with yourself because your happiness depends on it.

2) Talk about your specific fears with your partner. Let them know if, for example, you fear they will try to change you. Or, you feel emasculated...More

Sunday, August 6, 2023

Commit to the relationship (2)

‘The two shall become one.’ Matthew 19:5 NKJV

The word commit means ‘to bind, or obligate, or pledge’. And for some of us, it evokes pictures of servitude, restraints, and the loss of our freedom. In other words, it frightens us. Many people place a high value on their independence and self-sufficiency, and as a result, some of them can also become more reluctant to commit to a relationship that requires compromise and consideration of another person's views (see Philippians 2:3-4). It may lead to a desire to keep the relationship fluid and flexible, so they can stay or leave whenever they want. The...More

Saturday, August 5, 2023

Commit to the relationship (1)

‘For wherever you go, I will go.’ Ruth 1:16 NKJV

One of the greatest Scriptures on commitment in the Bible are the words of Ruth to Naomi: ‘Entreat me not to leave you, or to turn back from following after you; for wherever you go, I will go; and wherever you lodge, I will lodge; your people shall be my people, and your God, my God.’ (Ruth 1:16 NKJV) Why are we afraid to commit to a relationship?

1) Fear of losing control: ‘Why forgo my independence?’

2) Fear of lack: ‘What if he or she ruins my finances?’

3) Fear of inadequacy: ‘What if I can’t meet his or her...More

Friday, August 4, 2023

God has not forsaken you

‘You will deny Me three times.’ Luke 22:61 NKJV

The Bible says, ‘Peter remembered the word of the Lord … “Before the rooster crows, you will deny Me three times.” So Peter went out and wept bitterly’ (Luke 22:61-62 NKJV). What is it that saves us? Our good works? No, it’s our faith in Christ. ‘For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.’ (Ephesians 2:8-9 NKJV). Now you understand the words of Christ to Peter: ‘I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail’ (Luke 22:32 NKJV). When you have...More

Thursday, August 3, 2023

Are you being sifted?

‘Satan has asked for you, that he may sift you as wheat.’ Luke 22:31 NKJV

Jesus knew Peter would deny Him, yet He called him to be His disciple, saying: ‘And the Lord said, “Simon, Simon! Indeed, Satan has asked for you, that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail; and when you have returned to Me, strengthen your brethren.”’ (Luke 22:31-32 NKJV). The mistakes you make and the messes you create usually don’t happen by accident but by choice. Yet they don’t put you beyond the reach of God’s grace. The secret of victory is to let God use your mistakes...More

Wednesday, August 2, 2023

Growing older with grace (2)

‘For length of days and long life And peace they will add to you.’ Proverbs 3:2 NKJV

By the year 2030, one in five of us will be seventy years of age or older. That’s about 20 per cent of the world’s population. Millions of us will live to be a hundred or more. When asked at his birthday party how he felt about turning eighty, American President Dwight D. Eisenhower replied, ‘It sure does beat the alternative!’ African American Anita Bogan died in 2007 at the ripe old age of 106. Her obituary in the Los Angeles Times read: ‘Blessed with good health and a sound mind, Bogan spent most of her old age...More

Tuesday, August 1, 2023

Growing older with grace (1)

‘If you respect the LORD, you will live longer.’ Proverbs 10:27 CEV

Does the thought of ageing make you anxious? If so, it’s time to re-examine your value system. With God, the contents are more important than the package. And in order to make peace with your wrinkles, you must come into agreement with Him. Ultimately, it’s not the number of days in your life that count but the quality of life in your days. Jesus’ first miracle was turning water into wine. Note what the host of the wedding reception said: ‘Everyone brings out the choice wine first … but you have saved the best till now’ (John 2:10...More

Monday, July 31, 2023

Break out of the box

‘Yes, again and again they tempted God, And limited the Holy One of Israel.’ Psalm 78:41 NKJV

The Bible says: ‘They provoked Him in the wilderness, and grieved Him in the desert! Yes, again and again they tempted God and limited the Holy One of Israel. They did not remember His power’ (Psalm 78:40-42 NKJV). The Israelites continually provoked God’s anger and grieved His heart in the wilderness. How? By limiting Him. By limiting what He could do for them and through them. And we do the same when we fail to recognise and use the gifts He gives us and the creative ideas He places within our minds. God wants...More

Sunday, July 30, 2023

Let your children enjoy their childhood

‘I will lead on slowly, at a pace which … the children, are able to endure.’ Genesis 33:14 NKJV

Today there is a tendency on the part of some parents to try and make their children grow up too quickly. They rush them through the milestones of childhood and thrust them into the turmoil of adolescence. This is the conclusion of developmental psychologist Dr David Elkind, who called this cultural phenomenon the ‘Hurried Child Syndrome’. It happens when parents encourage their children to act like teenagers, such as buying make-up for preschool girls, allowing early teenage dating, treating kids more like...More

Saturday, July 29, 2023

You belong to God

‘Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex!’ Psalm 139:14 NLT

Do you remember the old TV series The Six Million Dollar Man? He was built and equipped with nuclear-powered bionic limbs and implants. Well, he has nothing on you! You’re unique … one of a kind … a genuine marvel of God’s creative genius. For example, your tongue has four hundred little taste buds, each one capable of discerning the difference between asparagus and lemon meringue pie. And how about your intestinal system? Twenty million little mouths capable of digesting almost anything. Then, there is your cooling system. Frigidaire...More

Friday, July 28, 2023

Prophecy fulfilled

‘Declaring the end from the beginning, And from ancient times things that are not yet done.’ Isaiah 46:10 NKJV

How can you be sure the Bible is divinely inspired and, therefore, worthy of your trust? By prophecy fulfilled! No other religion has specific, repeated, and unfailing fulfilment of predictions made many years in advance of events over which the predictor had no control. Finite human beings know the future only if it’s told to them by an infinite being. And God provided this evidence for us so we would know that the Scriptures have a divine author: ‘For I am God … Declaring the end from the...More

Thursday, July 27, 2023

Don’t quarrel about it

‘Stop before a dispute breaks out.’ Proverbs 17:14 NLT

Have you seen the bumper sticker that reads, ‘People who think they know it all are especially annoying to those of us who do?’ You will find know-it-alls everywhere. Older people, afraid of uselessness, struggle to prove they still have some superior amount of knowledge. Religious people use their convictions like a club to beat others over the head. The Bible says, ‘Earnestly contend for the faith’ (Jude 1:3 KJV). But there is a difference between contending and being contentious. Paul writes: ‘Don’t have anything to do with foolish and...More

Wednesday, July 26, 2023

Showing love and respect

‘Love one another...giving precedence and showing honour to one another.’ Romans 12:10 AMPC

One of the first signs of trouble in a marriage is taking each other for granted. And it happens subtly, like a weed growing up and choking a rose. Dr James Dobson writes: ‘One of the best ways to keep a marriage healthy is to maintain a system of mutual accountability within the context of love. This is done by protecting what I call the ‘line of respect’. Let me illustrate. Suppose I work in my office two hours longer than usual knowing that my wife, Shirley, is at home preparing a special candlelight dinner. If...More

Tuesday, July 25, 2023

They will come back to it

‘Direct your children onto the right path, and when they are older, they will not leave it.’ Proverbs 22:6 NLT

When your child begins to toddle and talk, plant God’s Word deep in their heart. That doesn’t guarantee they won’t go astray. Many of us got it wrong before we finally got it right. Just make sure they know where the right path is. Picture a salmon being spawned in the River Severn, then as it matures, it swims downstream and begins its long migration to the North Atlantic. The salmon swims for thousands of miles. Then, as if by command, it begins the long journey back to its place of spawning....More

Monday, July 24, 2023

Do you have an attitude of entitlement?

‘By love serve one another.’ Galatians 5:13 KJV

Do you have an ‘I-O-YOU’ attitude or a ‘U-O-ME’ attitude? What gives us an attitude of entitlement? It’s found in the middle of the word entitlement itself: ‘title’. We assume people owe us because of the title we hold in their lives: wife, husband, mother, brother, daughter, friend, pastor, donor, employee, boss, etc. We think of our title as a title deed that gives us the right to whatever advantage we expect. Paul described the essence of discipleship in these words: ‘By love serve one another.’ If you have an attitude of entitlement, here...More

Sunday, July 23, 2023

The bottom line on money

‘There is one who makes himself rich, yet has nothing.’ Proverbs 13:7 NKJV

The Bible says, ‘There is one who makes himself rich, yet has nothing; and one who makes himself poor, yet has great riches’ (Proverbs 13:7 NKJV). It’s a blessing to have the things money can buy as long as you don’t lose sight of the things it can’t buy. Money can buy whatever is for sale. But the greatest things in life, like your health and your relationships, can’t be bought because they’re not for sale. You could sum up much of what the Bible has to say about money with these three bottom-line statements: 1) What you...More

Saturday, July 22, 2023

Try to be more gentle

‘We were gentle among you.’ 1 Thessalonians 2:7 NKJV

Bulldozers are good at demolishing things, but they’re useless at building things. With that picture in mind, ask yourself, ‘Do I use the force of my personality and the power of my position to impose my will on people and get them to do things my way?’ If your answer is yes, then understand this: those who are the most controlling are often the most afraid of being controlled! Question: what do you fear would happen if you treated others with respect and considered their input, ideas, and choices? Is fear and intimidation the only way you can imagine...More

Friday, July 21, 2023

Start ‘meditating’ on the Scriptures

‘Oh, how I love Your law! It is my meditation all the day.’ Psalm 119:97 NKJV

Andrew Murray wrote, ‘There is a direct connection between the degree to which you succeed in life and the time you spend meditating on God’s Word.’ God told Joshua, ‘Meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will … have good success’ (Joshua 1:8 NKJV). We live in the age of ADD. We once believed that if we had more material things, we would feel happier. But it doesn’t work. The more things we acquire, the more we have to protect, insure, maintain,...More

Thursday, July 20, 2023

Are you being led or being driven?

‘The thing that you are doing is not good. You will surely wear out.’ Exodus 18:17-18 NASB

Do you feel like there isn’t enough of you to go around? Like you’re on the cliff’s edge and about to go over? Perhaps because you’re doing much more than God intended you to do. You see, when God reveals His purpose for your life, He also gives you His power to carry it out. Usually, it’s simple and remarkably sane. One of the surest ways to know you are walking in God’s will is that you will feel led, not driven. Are you resting less and working more? Are you praying and reading your Bible less and worrying...More

Wednesday, July 19, 2023

A time to be careful

‘If you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall!’ 1 Corinthians 10:12 NIV

The time to be careful is after you have reached your goals and you’re celebrating your victories. There are three crucial points in every battle, and believe it or not, the easiest one is sometimes the fight itself. The most difficult point is the period of indecision right before the conflict – whether to stand and fight or run away – the battle between faith and fear. But by far the most dangerous period is the aftermath. With your resources spent and your guard down, you need to watch for things like...More

Tuesday, July 18, 2023

You’re ‘called…by his marvellous grace’

‘God chose me and called me by his marvellous grace.’ Galatians 1:15 NLT

In Scripture, you will notice that God usually called busy people. Moses the shepherd was busy tending his flock. Gideon the farmer was busy harvesting his crop. Peter and John the fishermen were busy mending their nets. But there was something inside each of them that responded to God’s call. With God, availability matters more than ability. Imagine for a moment a farm worker named Saul out looking for his father’s lost mules, and returning home anointed to be Israel’s first king (see 1 Samuel 9-10). There is no telling what God...More

Monday, July 17, 2023

Shut yourself in with God

‘I long for you, O God.’ Psalm 42:1 NLT

Are you having difficulty understanding God’s ways? We all struggle with that. Even though we can look back and see how His hand of blessing and guidance has been upon us, at times we still feel afraid and alone. Jesus, Himself cried, ‘My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?’ (Matthew 27:46 NKJV). Those words could be interpreted as, ‘I may not understand what’s happening right now, but I know you’re still my God.’ What assurance! Have you ever watched a child reach for a parent’s hand and say, ‘Slow down; you’re walking too fast’? The child is...More

Sunday, July 16, 2023

Follow God and take your children with you

‘Lot moved his tents to a place near Sodom.’ Genesis 13:12 NLT

Jesus said: ‘If anyone causes one of these little ones – those who believe in me – to stumble, it would be better for them to have a large millstone hung around their neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea’ (Matthew 18:6 NIV). Implicit in those words is a sobering challenge to every parent (and every person who is a role model for children): your moral authority doesn’t come from your knowledge but from your lifestyle and integrity. As your children grow up, they’re less apt to listen to what you say and more inclined to...More

Saturday, July 15, 2023

‘Should I, or shouldn’t I?’

‘We can say with confidence and a clear conscience.’ 2 Corinthians 1:12 NLT

In My Utmost for His Highest, Oswald Chambers writes: ‘Conscience is that ability within me that attaches itself to the highest standard I know, and … continually reminds me of what that standard demands … If I’m in the habit of always holding God’s standard in front of me, conscience will always direct me to God’s perfect law and indicate what I should do. The question is will I obey? … God always instructs us down to the last detail … He does not speak with a voice like thunder – His voice is so gentle it’s easy...More

Friday, July 14, 2023

Are you joy-deprived?

‘I came so everyone would have life, and have it fully.’ John 10:10 CEV

Your lungs need oxygen to thrive, your body needs food to thrive, and your soul needs joy to thrive. How can you tell when someone is joy-deprived? By how they look and what they say. John 10:10 helps us to understand that God wants us to live life fully while the enemy will try to deceive us into thinking that enjoying life is not important and it is wrong to be having fun rather than working hard. You may have been influenced by a parent who appeared to never enjoy life and seemed aggravated when others did. Maybe you were told to be...More

Thursday, July 13, 2023

Dealing with loneliness (2)

‘Everyone abandoned me.’ 2 Timothy 4:16 NLT

What’s the proper way to deal with loneliness? 1) Learn to be alone without feeling lonely. Jesus often left the crowd to be alone with His Father in prayer. Why? Because He knew that solitude is essential to spiritual growth. And He came back from those times personally enriched and better equipped to deal with the challenges of life. The Bible says, ‘Then Jacob was left alone; and a Man wrestled with him until the breaking of day’ (Genesis 32:24 NKJV). Out of that time alone with God came a man with a new name, a new nature, a new walk, and a new future....More

Wednesday, July 12, 2023

Dealing with loneliness (1)

‘I lie awake, And am like a sparrow alone on the housetop.’ Psalm 102:7 NKJV

Wolfgang Dircks, a divorced, disabled loner, was found deceased in his apartment in Bonn, Germany, in December 1998 – five years after he died. He was forty-three and died watching television. Neighbours didn’t notice his absence. His landlord came by after the bank account from which his rent was paid dried up. A TV schedule was still sitting on the lap of Dircks’s skeleton and was open to the page of 5 December 1993 – the apparent date of his death. The television had long since stopped in the on position, but the lights on...More

Tuesday, July 11, 2023

Be on your guard

‘Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith.’ 1 Corinthians 16:13 NIV

Sometimes you experience more problems after you become a Christian than you did before. ‘Think back on those early days when you first learned about Christ. Remember how you remained faithful even though it meant terrible suffering’ (Hebrews 10:32 NLT). Consider the life of Christ. ‘After his baptism, as Jesus came up out of the water, the heavens were opened … And a voice from heaven said, “This is my dearly loved Son, who brings me great joy”’ (Matthew 3:16-17 NLT). Then we read: ‘Jesus was led by the Spirit into the...More

Monday, July 10, 2023

Jesus is your lawyer!

‘We have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.’ 1 John 2:1 NASB

On those days when you wonder how God could love you, read these words: ‘If anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous’ (1 John 2:1 NASB). When your thoughts sink to gutter level and your actions are anything but Christlike, remind yourself: ‘Therefore, he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, since he always lives to intercede for them.’ (Hebrews 7:25 CSB). It works like this: when God’s law declares you guilty, Jesus steps in and says, ‘Father, I have this...More

Sunday, July 9, 2023

Become a no-limits person!

‘All things possible to him who believes.’ Mark 9:23 NKJV

No-limits people refuse to accept things as they are because they see them as they can be. Instead of saying, ‘It can’t be done,’ they rise up in faith and say, ‘All things are possible to him who believes.’ No-limits people have faults and failures like everybody else. The difference is, they walk by faith to the cliff’s edge knowing that one of two things will happen when they get there. Either God will put solid rock under their feet, or He will teach them to fly. In other words, they plug into God’s unlimited power supply. The author...More

Saturday, July 8, 2023

Don’t get distracted

‘Let your eyes look straight ahead.’ Proverbs 4:25 NKJV

To succeed at what God has called you to do, you must do these: 1) Remove distractions. This is not easy, as most people now get hundreds of emails, texts, and tweets every day. But you must do it. How? By keeping the discipline of practising your priorities. Don’t accomplish easy things first, or hard things first, or urgent things first. Do first things first – the activities that provide you with the highest return. That way, you keep distractions minimised. 2) Protect yourself from distractions. Allocate blocks of time to think without...More

Friday, July 7, 2023

Establish your priorities

‘I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain.’ John 15:16 NKJV

In order to fulfil God’s plan for your life, you must establish clear priorities and live by them each day. Author Edward de Bono quipped, ‘A conclusion is the place where you get tired of thinking.’ Sadly, many people arrive at priorities based on where they ran out of steam. You definitely don’t want to do that. Nor do you want to allow others to decide your agenda or your priorities. Many ways exist for determining priorities. First, and foremost, your plan must always line up with...More

Thursday, July 6, 2023

When you’re under attack (6)

‘I have fought a good fight.’ 2 Timothy 4:7 KJV

Here are three more things to keep in mind when you’re under attack: 1) You are not unique. In a letter to persecuted believers, the apostle Peter said, ‘Be strong in your faith. Remember that your Christian brothers and sisters all over the world are going through the same kind of suffering you are’ (1 Peter 5:9 NLT). We are all on the same battlefield, but the devil would love to convince you that you’re the only person who has ever experienced anything like this. That’s so you will feel like a failure and cut yourself off from the strength and...More

Wednesday, July 5, 2023

When you’re under attack (5)

‘With us is the LORD our God to help us and to fight our battles.’ 2 Chronicles 32:8 NIV

The new birth creates a battle between your old nature and your new nature, and you must learn how to fight it. For the last handful of days, we have been looking at scriptural strategies for winning. Here are a few more: 1) Fill your mind with Scripture. David said, ‘If your law had not been my delight, I would have perished in my affliction’ (Psalm 119:92 NIV). Your mind is like soil; it will grow any seed you plant, good or bad. When you plant words spoken by God, you’re sowing energy, life, and hope into your...More

Tuesday, July 4, 2023

When you’re under attack (4)

‘If you fail under pressure, your strength is too small.’ Proverbs 24:10 NLT

For the last few days, we have talked about how to handle Satan’s attacks when they come. So, if you’re under attack today, do these: 1) Be tough. Life is a collection of battles, which means it can also be a collection of victories. ‘Greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world’ (1 John 4:4 KJV). Reach within and draw on God’s strength. Go ahead; He longs to show you what He can do for you. ‘For he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee. So that we may boldly say, The Lord is my helper, and I...More

Monday, July 3, 2023

When you’re under attack (3)

‘We don’t know why things happen as they do, but we don’t give up and quit.’ 2 Corinthians 4:8 TLB

Satan can attack you anytime, anywhere. If you want to defeat him, here are some tried and true biblical principles you need to follow: 1) Guard your mind. You will never be defeated as long as you’re victorious in your mind; that’s the birthplace of everything you do. Satan knows that, and he will try to get your thoughts so scattered you won’t be able to concentrate on what’s important. Don’t let him do it. Get back into focus. Isaiah said, ‘You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is...More

Sunday, July 2, 2023

When you’re under attack (2)

‘And this is the victory that has overcome the world – our faith..’ 1 John 5:4 NKJV

Adversity is often the Enemy’s attempt to rob you of the next season of God’s blessing in your life. If you’re under attack today, you need to do these three things: 1) Rise up and fight back. You will be tempted to withdraw or become timid and passive, especially if you have been hurt. Don’t do it. A wounded animal just invites attack. Satan loves shy, fearful types, but real fighters intimidate him. So, be bold and claim the promise, ‘Resist the devil, and he will flee from you’ (James 4:7 KJV). 2) Use all your...More

Saturday, July 1, 2023

When you’re under attack (1)

‘When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the LORD shall lift up a standard against him.’ Isaiah 59:19 KJV

Your biggest mistakes often occur in the early stage of a trial because it catches you off guard. Surprise is one of the devil’s favourite weapons, so here are four winning strategies you can use when you’re under attack: 1) Don’t panic. Live by the Scripture, ‘Be still, and know that I am God’ (Psalm 46:10 KJV). That means God is present, fully aware of your situation, and has a solution. Just be sensitive and responsive to the voice of His Spirit within you (see John 16:13)....More

Friday, June 30, 2023

Getting real

‘The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience.’ 1 Corinthians 10:13 NLT

The problem isn’t just that we sin; it’s that we can’t talk about it. We’re comfortable with tales of people who used to sin because they have happy endings. Imagine going to a counsellor and saying, ‘I only want to discuss problems I used to have. Please don’t ask me to confess any current ones. I would be embarrassed. I’m afraid you would reject me.’ Why would you go to a counsellor and try to convince them that you don’t need counsel? People are okay telling a doctor about their physical...More

Thursday, June 29, 2023

Who can you count on?

‘Timothy has proved himself.’ Philippians 2:22 NIV

God will be faithful to you, come what may. Humanly speaking, who else can you count on? Paul writes: ‘Everyone looks out for their own interests, not those of Jesus Christ. But you know that Timothy has proved himself, because as a son with his father he has served with me in the work of the gospel’ (Philippians 2:21-22 NIV). Paul knew he could count on Timothy. Who can you count on? Before you answer, consider the following four questions: 1) When something goes wrong, do you have at least one friend you can easily talk to about it? ‘A friend loves at...More

Wednesday, June 28, 2023

Be joyful

‘That we may sing for joy and be glad all our days.’ Psalm 90:14 NIV

It doesn’t help the cause of Christ when His followers go around looking miserable. You say, ‘But I have problems.’ Everybody does. When the apostle Paul was in prison, he wrote, ‘Rejoice in the Lord always’ (Philippians 4:4 NIV). Expressing joy is something you do in spite of your circumstances, not because of them. The Bible says, ‘With joy you will draw water from the wells of salvation’ (Isaiah 12:3 NIV). God has put a well of joy within you, but you have to draw it out and share it with others. Joy is contagious. Happiness...More

Tuesday, June 27, 2023

Sharing our lives

‘Let us consider how we may spur one another on towards love and good deeds.’ Hebrews 10:24 NIV

One of the major benefits of joining a church or community group is the support and encouragement we receive from each other. The Bible says we were not meant to be alone. ‘Then the LORD God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone; I will make him a helper suitable for him.” Genesis 2:18 NASB. One of the characteristics of the early church was their faithfulness to connectedness because they knew connectedness doesn’t merely happen. They met together daily. They ate together. Over time,...More

Monday, June 26, 2023

Integrity (2)

‘The godly walk with integrity; blessed are their children who follow them.’ Proverbs 20:7 NLT

Here are six ingredients which are always found in lasting success: 1) Information. If you don’t stay informed, you will be left behind. 2) Intuition. This is sometimes referred to as ‘to know in your knower’. 3) Initiative. This is when you are willing to step out in faith and act on what you know intuitively. 4) Intentionality. This is when you are willing to set specific goals and timelines for reaching them. 5) Intensity. This calls for more than starting power, it requires staying power. 6) Integrity. This...More

Sunday, June 25, 2023

Integrity (1)

‘He who walks with integrity walks securely, but he who perverts his ways will become known.’ Proverbs 10:9 NKJV

What would you say is the single most important characteristic of a person who wants to be successful and make a difference in the world? Some would say intelligence. After all, knowledge is power in numerous ways. Others argue it is intensity, that spirit of conquest supplemented with a passion that becomes contagious. Yet others propose that it is insight, good old common sense accompanied by the ability to clearly perceive certain issues. The Bible says the most important quality in success is...More

Saturday, June 24, 2023

What are your values? (2)

‘As I looked at everything I had worked so hard to accomplish, it was all so meaningless.’ Ecclesiastes 2:11 NLT

Here are two more scriptural values you should live by: 1) Equality. ‘For there is no respect of persons with God’ (Romans 2:11 KJV). In God’s eyes, no person is more important than another. Not one! Some have received more access to the things the world offers, achieved more education, or been called to higher ranks of responsibility. But in God’s eyes, no one is innately better. The ground is level at the foot of the cross, and we all approach God as sinners in need of salvation. So no...More

Friday, June 23, 2023

What are your values? (1)

‘The integrity of the upright guides them.’ Proverbs 11:3 NIV

Here are some values based on Scripture: 1) God’s sovereignty. ‘You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed’ (Psalm 139:16 NLT). You can rest in knowing that God has the last word on everything that concerns you (see Psalm 138:8). When all is said and done, you have an ordered destiny. When you know that, you don’t have to try and manipulate people and circumstances to your advantage. You simply have to walk through the doors God opens and be at peace...More

Thursday, June 22, 2023

How to develop patience (4)

‘But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,’ Galatians 5:22 NLT

You will notice that in listing the fruit of the Spirit, patience comes right after peace. Why? Because when you have peace in your heart, practically nothing can cause you to feel impatient. But these qualities are the fruit of the Spirit, not the effort of the flesh. You can’t psych yourself up and say, ‘I’m going to be patient if it kills me.’ If it is the genuine fruit of the Spirit, you will have genuine inner peace, and certain circumstances won’t...More

Wednesday, June 21, 2023

How to develop patience (3)

‘A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.’ Proverbs 17:22 ESV

Here are two more things you need to do in order to develop patience: 1) Develop a sense of humour. The Bible says, ‘A tranquil heart is life to the body’ (Proverbs 14:30 NASB). Scientific studies reveal that people who laugh, live longer. Humour is a stress dissolver. It’s an antidote to apprehension. It’s a tranquilliser without any troubling side effects. It’s a shock absorber for the potholes of life. When you can see the humourous side to a situation, it crushes its power over you. And when you trust...More

Tuesday, June 20, 2023

How to develop patience (2)

‘Whoever is patient has great understanding.’ Proverbs 14:29 NIV

Patience begins by changing the way you view something. When you’re impatient, you have a narrow perspective. All you see is yourself: your needs, goals, schedule, desires, and the way people are messing up your life. Basically, the root of impatience is selfishness. Try to see things from the other person’s point of view. If you want to succeed in marriage, learn to see life from your partner’s point of view. If you want to succeed as a parent, learn to see things from your child’s point of view. If you want to succeed in business, learn...More

Monday, June 19, 2023

How to develop patience (1)

‘One who is slow to anger is better than the mighty.’ Proverbs 16:32 NASB

The Bible says that when you pray, God can answer instantly. But nowhere in the Bible are you promised instant patience. Patience is a quality of character, and character is built over a lifetime of walking with God through good times and bad. Here is how God develops patience in us: 1) Interruptions. You sit down to eat dinner and your phone starts ringing. You’re in the bath and someone comes to the door. You’re quickly working to meet a deadline and visitors arrive. 2) Delays. We hate to wait. We have a microwave mindset – we...More

Sunday, June 18, 2023

The Huddle

‘I appeal to you, brothers, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree, and that there be no divisions among you’ 1 Corinthians 1:10 ESV

To lead your family effectively, you need to learn how to huddle regularly. The 'huddle' is where a team: 1) sets its goals; 2) discusses the division of responsibilities; 3) tackles the issues that determine whether it wins or loses. Parent, even though you call the plays from overhead, your family must be taught how to accomplish them on the field. That means working through things, talking through disagreements, and motivating and appreciating each member....More

Saturday, June 17, 2023

How love is expressed

‘Serve one another humbly in love.’ Galatians 5:13 NIV

Love is mostly something you do instead of something you feel. Paul writes, ‘You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love’ (Galatians 5:13 NIV). So how are you supposed to express your love? According to one author, as follows: ‘A son drives for five hours to be with his mother on her birthday. A friend mentions a book he is interested in; his friend remembers and finds a copy to give to him for no visible reason. A middle-aged couple in a restaurant...More

Friday, June 16, 2023

Change your concept of God

‘He will rejoice over you with gladness.’ Zephaniah 3:17 NKJV

What’s your concept of God? When you pray, ‘Our Father,’ what do you see? Do you see a parent who abandoned you, abused you, or abdicated their responsibility to you? Do you think of an angry father who accused but never affirmed you; in other words, a God waiting to zap you each time you do wrong? If so, you need to change your concept of God. The Bible says: ‘The LORD your God in your midst, the Mighty One, will save; He will rejoice over you with gladness, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing’...More

Thursday, June 15, 2023

Intimacy vs. activity

‘”But one thing is necessary. Mary has made the right choice, and it will not be taken away from her.”’ Luke 10:42 CSB

When Jesus visited the home of Mary and Martha, their individual responses to Him were very different. Martha’s focus was on the meal. Her aim was to please Jesus. But she made a common mistake; her work became more important than her Lord. What began as a serving experience became a self-serving one. She forgot the meal was to honour Jesus, not her. She said, … ‘Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!’ (Luke 10:40 NIV). And...More

Wednesday, June 14, 2023

You are Christ’s ambassador (3)

‘Our citizenship is in heaven.’ Philippians 3:20 NIV

Let’s recap. As an ambassador, you must have the following qualifications and characteristics: 1) Be a citizen of the country you represent. ‘… our citizenship is in heaven.’ (Philippians 3:20 NKJV) 2) Your character and conduct must reflect the highest values of your country. ‘… that our God may make you worthy of his calling …’ (2 Thessalonians 1:11 NIV). 3) You must be equipped for the job. ‘There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit …’ (1 Corinthians 12:4 NIV). 4) You must be loyal to your country. Now, let’s look at...More

Tuesday, June 13, 2023

You are Christ’s ambassador (2)

‘Finally, be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power.’ Ephesians 6:10 NIV

A decade ago, our ideas about being an ambassador were radically altered when the U.S. ambassador to Libya was murdered by terrorists. It takes a special person to be an ambassador in a combat zone. And that’s what you are in! Paul writes: ‘Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armour of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against...More

Monday, June 12, 2023

You are Christ’s ambassador (1)

‘We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors.’ 2 Corinthians 5:20 NIV

Your job in the kingdom of God is that of an ambassador. What a privilege! And what a responsibility! Over the next few days, let’s look at some of the qualities of an ambassador: You must be a citizen of the country you represent. ‘But our citizenship is in heaven’ (Philippians 3:20 NIV). Exiled, John said, ‘I … was on the island of Patmos because of the Word of God and the testimony of Jesus. On the Lord’s Day I was in the Spirit …’ (Revelation 1:9-10 NIV). John knew it was not where he was but whose he was that counted the...More

Sunday, June 11, 2023

Don’t go until you’re empowered

‘Tarry...until you are endued with power from on high.’ Luke 24:49 NKJV

You may be educated, experienced, and talented, but you will never fulfil God’s purposes for your life until you’re ‘endued with power from on high’. Read these two Scriptures: 1) ‘… I send the Promise of My Father upon you; but tarry in the city of Jerusalem until you are endued with power from on high’ (Luke 24:49 NKJV). 2) ‘When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they...More

Saturday, June 10, 2023

Your dream is still alive

‘The spirit of Jacob their father revived.’ Genesis 45:27 NKJV

If the dream you believe God gave you seems dead, read this: ‘And they told him, saying, “Joseph is still alive, and he is governor over all the land of Egypt.” And Jacob’s heart stood still, because he did not believe them. But … when he saw the carts which Joseph had sent to carry him, the spirit of Jacob their father revived’ (Genesis 45:26-27 NKJV). For years Jacob believed his son, the dreamer, was dead. But it was a lie. In his old age, wagons loaded with riches came to carry him back to see his son who was now the prince of...More

Friday, June 9, 2023

Are You Flourishing? (3)

‘The one who loves his life will lose it, and the one who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life.’ John 12:25 CSB

Here are two more areas in which God created you to flourish: 1) Your relationships. Relationally, your languishing self is often troubled. You’re undisciplined in what you say, sometimes reverting to sarcasm, gossip and flattery. You isolate. You dominate. You attack. You withdraw. Whereas your flourishing self seeks to bless others. They energise you. You’re able to disclose your thoughts and feelings in a way that invites openness in them. You’re quick to admit your own...More

Thursday, June 8, 2023

Are You Flourishing? (2)

‘They will flourish in the courts of our God.’ Psalm 92:13 NIV

Inside you, there’s a battle between your flourishing self – the person you were created to be – and your languishing self. ‘What’s that?’ you ask. Your languishing self feels uneasy and discontent. You’re drawn to bad habits like mindlessly watching TV, drinking too much, misusing sex, or excessive spending – things designed to temporarily anaesthetise pain. Your thoughts automatically drift in the direction of fear and anger. Learning doesn’t feel worthwhile. You think about yourself most of the time. Whereas flourishing takes...More

Wednesday, June 7, 2023

Are You Flourishing? (1)

‘It is He who has made us, and not we ourselves’ Psalms 100:3 NASB

Do you need motivation today? Take a look at the palm tree. 1) You can cut it, but you can't kill it! The minerals and nutrients most trees need to survive are found on the surface, just below the bark, so, when you cut them, they die. But not the palm tree. Its life comes from within, so it flourishes, even under attack. Listen: '… we have this treasure in earthen vessels…' (2 Corinthians 4:7 NKJV). How wonderful; even though the earthen vessel without may be cut and wounded, the treasure within is secure, beyond the enemy's reach! 2) It...More

Tuesday, June 6, 2023


‘While he was still speaking, a rooster crowed.’ Luke 22:60 NASB

The Bible says: ‘… while he was still speaking, a rooster crowed… the Lord turned and looked at Peter. And Peter remembered the word of the Lord, how He had told him, “Before a rooster crows today, you will deny Me three times.” And he went out and wept bitterly’ (Luke 22:60-62 NASB). Before God entrusts you with a great assignment, He will permit Satan to test you. Why? To reveal your weaknesses and strengthen you in those areas. God will allow you to fail in a smaller sphere to keep you from messing up in a larger one, hurting not...More

Monday, June 5, 2023

Today God is calling you (3)

‘I have prayed for you, that your faith will not fail.’ Luke 22:32 NASB

God wants you to do His will, but you’ll never reach the place of spiritual maturity in which you’re free of Satan. You can overcome him, but you can’t eliminate him. Look at Peter. He had only one gear: overdrive. He was always in the middle of everything that was going on, but he wasn’t always on top of things. The man who ended up leading the church first denied being a disciple of Jesus. Pretty shocking, eh? But nothing about us surprises God. He doesn’t call you and say, ‘I hope you’re the right person.’ No; Jesus told...More

Sunday, June 4, 2023

Today God is calling you (2)

‘Before you were born I sanctified you.’ Jeremiah 1:5 NKJV

The word sanctified means to be set apart for the exclusive use of. The word ordained means ordered according to a plan. Here are two things you need to know: God doesn’t waste anything He created, and He doesn’t waste anything He can use. Before you were saved, God permitted experiences, both good and bad, that were equipping you for what He had in mind. That includes who your parents were, the places they came from, where you were educated, the number of years you spent in school, the jobs you held, and the training you received. It also includes...More

Saturday, June 3, 2023

Today God is calling you (1)

‘Paul, a bondservant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle.’ Romans 1:1 NKJV

God reached into a part of Paul’s background that had been formed before he became a Christian, and He found some very useful things there. And they weren’t all spiritual things. They were also academic and cultural. Even though Paul seemed unqualified because of his monumental hatred for Christians, his background actually qualified him in a unique way. As a former Pharisee, he understood the Scriptures and the mindset of those who would oppose him. And his former spiritual blindness gave him compassion for the lost....More

Friday, June 2, 2023

Your position and your condition

‘Having now been justified by His blood...’ Romans 5:9 NASB

The Bible says: ‘But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath of God through Him. …And not only this, but we also celebrate in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation.’ (Romans 5:8-9, 11 NASB). God loves and accepts you just as you are. And it gets better. He sees you as blameless. How? ‘God made Him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in Him we...More

Thursday, June 1, 2023

What can I do?

‘To set at liberty those who are oppressed’ Luke 4:18 NKJV

The United Nations estimates that as many as 2 million children and young people are exploited in the worldwide sex trade every year – that’s four every minute. Can you imagine what the governments of the world would do if a city of two million people was taken captive and exploited and abused every day? If you think that’s bad, here is a statistic that should break your heart and bring you to your knees: only 1 per cent of those who are abducted into the sex trade are being rescued from it! You say, ‘What about the other 99 per cent?’ When...More

Wednesday, May 31, 2023

Prepare in advance

‘Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king’s delicacies...’ Daniel 1:8 NKJV

Are you continuing to do things you don’t want to do and indulge in thoughts that lead you astray? Are you being constantly overcome by the same old temptations? Here is the bad news: the new birth doesn’t do away with your old nature; it actually intensifies the struggle between your flesh and your spirit. Here is the good news: you can live victoriously! How? 1) Through prayer. Jesus told His disciples, ‘“Watch and pray, lest you enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is...More

Tuesday, May 30, 2023

Refuse to live in fear (4)

‘If God is for us, who can be against us?’ Romans 8:31 NKJV

To overcome fear, you must believe that God is with you. It’s the key to your ability to obey what He tells you to do. As you become confident that He is with you, your fear will lessen. When David volunteered to fight Goliath, King Saul said to him, ‘… You are not able to go against this Philistine to fight with him for you are a youth, and he a man of war from his youth’ (1 Samuel 17:33 NKJV). David replied, ‘…The LORD…will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine’ (1 Samuel 17:37 NKJV). You’re not in this battle alone; the Lord...More

Monday, May 29, 2023

Refuse to live in fear (3)

‘Perfect love casts out fear.’ 1 John 4:18 NKJV

When God says, ‘Fear not,’ He is basically telling you, ‘You’re going to have to deal with fear, but you can conquer it. You can act in spite of it.’ The Bible says, ‘… perfect love casts out fear.’ Sometimes we mistakenly think that Scripture means if we love God perfectly enough, we won’t be afraid. No, the only perfect love is God’s love for you. And it’s unconditional. Knowing that He always loves you, walks with you, defends you, supports you, and has promised to bless you in all that you do is what casts out your fear. And it does one...More

Sunday, May 28, 2023

Refuse to live in fear (2)

‘The LORD is on my side; I will not fear.’ Psalm 118:6 NKJV

God has created you for a life of growth, adventure, and acceleration. But you must take bold steps of faith. And you can’t do that if you’re perfectly satisfied to live in the safe zone. Even when you feel afraid, don’t let it stop you! Feel the fear and do it anyway! You say, ‘Will I ever stop being afraid?’ Yes, when you get to heaven. Feeling fear is part of being alive. You will experience fear when you try something for the first time, or when the obstacles in your path seem insurmountable, or when you feel like your resources are not...More

Saturday, May 27, 2023

Refuse to live in fear (1)

‘Fear involves torment.’ 1 John 4:18 NKJV

Advice columnist Ann Landers received about ten thousand letters every month. When asked to name the most common problem in her readers’ lives, she said, ‘Fear! People are afraid of losing their health, their wealth, and their loved ones. People are afraid of life itself.’ If you allow it to, fear will control you. Fear involves torment, and until the power of fear is broken, it will keep tormenting you. When fear rules your life, you cannot enjoy anything you do. And you certainly can’t enjoy God’s blessings. Dr Caroline Leaf says that fear triggers ‘more...More

Friday, May 26, 2023

Start saying, ‘I can.’

‘Many are they who say of me, “There is no help.”’ Psalm 3:2 NKJV

Maybe you have repeatedly heard the words ‘You can’t’ throughout your life. Many people like to tell others what they cannot do. Even people you wouldn’t automatically consider to be against you – teachers, coaches, parents, family members, friends, and leaders of church groups or social events, who often fail to realise the power of their words over young lives. Many of us grew up thinking, ‘I can’t,’ when that wasn’t true at all! No matter how often you have heard someone say, ‘You can’t,’ stand on God’s Word and...More

Thursday, May 25, 2023

Depend more on God

‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ 2 Corinthians 12:9 NIV

The secret of being able to do what you need to do is in realising that you cannot do it alone; you can only do it through God’s empowering grace. God said to Paul, ‘My grace is sufficient for you,’ and the word grace includes all of God you will ever need for whatever you face in life. What a promise! Sometimes we think we have to do it all. We forget that the power of Christ works through us, so we’re defeated before we even begin. ‘For we are labourers together with God’ (1 Corinthians 3:9 KJV). We...More

Wednesday, May 24, 2023

Through Christ, you can do it

‘I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.’ Philippians 4:13 NASB

Paul writes: ‘I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.’ (Philippians 4:13 NASB). Paul believed he could handle whatever life threw at him. Do you believe that too? What are the things that trigger your fear and cause you to say, ‘I could never do that’? Suddenly losing a loved one? Facing an unexpected illness? Having your adult child with two toddlers move into your fastidiously clean and tranquil house after you have had an empty nest for years? Going on a stringent diet because your life depends on it? Putting...More

Tuesday, May 23, 2023

Rebuilding your marriage (4)

‘Many waters cannot quench love, nor can rivers drown it.’ Song of Solomon 8:7 NLT

You must be open with one another. You must be transparent, sensitive, responsive, and willing to trust one another. Stop and think about how you feel when the doctor is about to give you an injection. Your first reaction is to tighten up, right? Similarly, our hearts naturally tighten up after the pain of rejection, betrayal, or neglect. It’s a reflex mechanism in the soul, a way we protect ourselves subconsciously. And it’s a great attribute anywhere else except in marriage. If you don’t turn off this mechanism, you will...More

Monday, May 22, 2023

Rebuilding your marriage (3)

‘Unless the LORD builds the house, they labour in vain who build it.’ Psalm 127:1 NKJV

You must be willing to forgive the other person. Loving someone makes you vulnerable. When you give someone your heart, they can break it. A stranger or casual acquaintance could say something that would roll off you like water off a duck’s back. But when your mate says the same thing to you, it can stir up feelings of anger and resentment. No one stays married to anyone without some forgiveness involved. Think about it: your relationship with God involves needing, asking for, and receiving His forgiveness. In the Lord’s...More

Sunday, May 21, 2023

Rebuilding your marriage (2)

‘Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church.’ Ephesians 5:25

Second, you must listen to each other. This requires time, patience, and focused attention. Too many couples give each other a monologue without leaving room for genuine dialogue. This is where marriage counselling is effective. It forces both of you to slow down, interpret your spouse’s language, understand their feelings, and discover their needs. When a marriage breaks down, couples are often so busy trying to get their own point across and win the fight that they don’t listen for solutions and places of negotiation. Divorce would...More

Saturday, May 20, 2023

Rebuilding your marriage (1)

‘The winds blew and beat on that house; and it fell.’ Matthew 7:27 NKJV

Today about 50 per cent of all new marriages end in divorce. Sadly, that’s true whether you’re a Christian or not. Sometimes the reasons are circumstantial, such as a redundancy or a home repossession. Other times it’s relational, such as a betrayal of trust or an addiction to drugs and alcohol. There are times when separation is a necessary option, but if you’re committed to rebuilding your marriage, you must learn how to reconnect and work to restore what you once had. In order to accomplish this, you must both be willing to...More

Friday, May 19, 2023

You need others

‘Though one may be overpowered by another, two can withstand him.’ Ecclesiastes 4:12 NKJV

As much as we would like to think that we know it all, if we’re honest, each of us is painfully aware that we have blind spots and areas of inexperience. You have had experiences others haven’t had; they have had experiences you haven’t had, and when you get together, you harness your collective experience and knowledge. Jesus sent the seventy disciples out in groups of two. Why? 1) For support. ‘Though one may be overpowered by another, two can withstand him.’ (Ecclesiastes 4:12 NKJV) 2) For enlightenment....More

Thursday, May 18, 2023

What you must give up

‘One thing I have desired of the LORD, that will I seek.’ Psalm 27:4 NKJV

In order to succeed, there are certain things you must give up. 1) You can’t be friends with everybody. Jesus loved everybody but spent most of His time with twelve people mentoring them. And He spent extra time with Peter, James, and John, His inner circle. At His life’s end, He could say, ‘I have brought you glory on earth by finishing the work you gave me to do’ (John 17:4 NIV). 2) You can’t do everything. Because of the fast pace of our society, people tend to multitask. But shifting from task to task can cost you up to 40...More

Wednesday, May 17, 2023

Lessons from a broken heart

‘Restore to me the joy of Your salvation.’ Psalm 51:12 NKJV

A broken heart can’t be healed by working sixteen hours a day, sweating it out in a gym, or using mood-altering substances like alcohol and drugs. Those things may bring a temporary fix but don’t bring a lasting cure. After falling into sin and shame, David prayed, ‘Restore to me the joy of Your salvation.’ Good news: God can restore what you have lost and teach you things about yourself you didn’t know that make you a better person. And one of the first lessons He teaches us is about forgiveness. You can’t hold the club of unforgiveness...More

Tuesday, May 16, 2023

Does it glorify God?

‘Whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.’ 1 Corinthians 10:31 NKJV

When you’re about to do something, and you’re not sure if you should, ask yourself, ‘Will doing this glorify God?’ If you follow that rule, you won’t go wrong in life. Let’s get specific. If you earn your money honestly, then it’s yours to spend as you wish. Once you give God His portion, you get to choose what you will do with the rest. However, your financial decisions have consequences that affect not only you but your family. When you go into debt you can’t repay, they suffer with you. So does your reputation with...More

Monday, May 15, 2023

Change your thinking, change your life (3)

‘Let those with understanding receive guidance.’ Proverbs 1:5 NLT

The book of Proverbs begins: ‘These are the proverbs of Solomon … Their purpose is to teach people wisdom … to help them understand the insights of the wise… to teach people to live disciplined and successful lives, to help them do what is right, just, and fair. These proverbs will give insight to the simple, knowledge and discernment to the young. Let the wise listen to these proverbs and become even wiser. Let those with understanding receive guidance …’ (Proverbs 1:1-5 NLT). Creative thinking is simply disciplined thinking. If you...More

Sunday, May 14, 2023

Change your thinking, change your life (2)

‘He who walks with wise men will be wise.’ Proverbs 13:20 NKJV

If you’re surrounded by negativity, look for a better environment. Advertising Executive, Charlie Brower said, ‘A new idea is delicate. It can be killed by a sneer or a yawn; it can be stabbed to death by a quip and worried to death by a frown on the right man’s brow.’ Negative environments kill great ideas every minute. A creative environment, on the other hand, becomes like a greenhouse where ideas are seeded, then sprout and thrive. In order to grow, you must seek out people who are committed to personal growth. Such people: 1) Encourage...More

Saturday, May 13, 2023

Change your thinking, change your life (1)

‘And be not conformed to this world: but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.’ Romans 12:2 NKJV

When you think creatively, you’re thinking like God, your creator. But not everybody will welcome your creative ideas. Jesus wasn’t crucified because He worked miracles; He was loved and applauded for those. He was crucified for having ideas that challenged the status quo. God is the giver of great concepts, truths, and ideas. So when He gives you one, don’t let anybody talk you out of it. Don’t let the fear of rejection or failure kill your idea, either. After all, you can’t do something new and...More

Friday, May 12, 2023

Having a vision for your life

‘Your young men shall see visions.’ Joel 2:28 NKJV

When you ask a child what they want to be when they grow up, they are apt to say something like a firefighter, a doctor, or a famous actor. The ability to dream is a gift that God has placed within each of us. If you want to achieve great things in life, you need a vision. Joseph’s vision didn’t come to pass until he was thirty, but he received it from God when he was a teenager. And God will give you one too: Right now, you may be considering different options for your life and even experimenting with some. That’s okay; you’re still getting to know...More

Thursday, May 11, 2023

A prayer of commitment to God

‘I have glorified You on the earth. I have finished the work which You have given Me to do.’ John 17:4 NKJV

If the desire of your heart is to please God and fulfil His will for your life, here is a prayer for you: ‘Lord, I thank You that even though You know everything about me, You still love me. You know my thoughts, my mistakes, my sins, and yet You still call me your child. Your grace towards me is beyond comprehension. More than anything else, I want to know You intimately and sense Your presence in my life each day. If there is any part of me that I have kept from You, show me so that I can invite You...More

Wednesday, May 10, 2023

A prayer for financial contentment

‘Yet true godliness with contentment is itself great wealth.’ 1 Timothy 6:6 NLT

The Bible says: ‘Yet true godliness with contentment is itself great wealth. After all, we brought nothing with us when we came into the world, and we can’t take anything with us when we leave it. So if we have enough food and clothing, let us be content. But people who long to be rich fall into temptation and are trapped by many foolish and harmful desires that plunge them into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil. And some people, craving money, have wandered from the true faith and...More

Tuesday, May 9, 2023

When God sends you an angel (4)

‘My God sent his angel and shut the lions’ mouths;’ Daniel 6:22 CSB

Here are some more situations when God might send an angel to help you. 1) When doing the right thing gets you into trouble. Doing God’s will put Daniel in the lions’ den, but God brought him out and publicly vindicated him. The king declared, ‘I issue a decree that in all my royal dominion, people must tremble in fear before the God of Daniel.’ (Daniel 6:26 CSB). 2) When you’re tired of battling temptation. When the urge to pick up a drink, drug, or cigarette feels overwhelming, or you think the only way out is to lie, or...More

Monday, May 8, 2023

When God sends you an angel (3)

‘The angel of the LORD encamps around those who fear Him, And rescues them.’ Psalm 34:7 NASB

What are some other situations when God might send an angel to help you? 1) To get you out of trouble. Lot was living in Sodom, a city about to be destroyed because of its extreme sin. That’s when God sent angels to rescue him and his family from impending doom. Lot listened, obeyed, and survived, but sadly his wife didn’t, and she perished (see Genesis 19). 2) To change your life’s direction. ‘Now Moses was tending the flock of Jethro…There the angel of the LORD appeared to him in flames of fire from within...More

Sunday, May 7, 2023

When God sends you an angel (2)

‘He will order his angels to protect you wherever you go.’ Psalm 91:11 NLT

In what situation might God send an angel to help you? 1) When those you love and trust have disappointed you. Imagine how Hagar felt. In a joint decision with his wife, Sarah, Abraham got Hagar pregnant in order to try and fulfil God’s promise. Then Sarah conceived, and after Isaac was born, Abraham sent Hagar and Ishmael away into the wilderness. Not wanting to see her son die after their resources ran out, Hagar sat a bowshot away from Ishmael, lifted her voice, and wept. But God sent an angel to tell her that her son was a child...More

Saturday, May 6, 2023

When God sends you an angel (1)

‘Are not all angels ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit salvation?’ Hebrews 1:14 NIV

God can come to you in varied forms. When Jesus appeared to His disciples and stilled the storm, they thought He was a ghost. So, your intellect can undermine your faith. The Bible says angels are ‘ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit salvation’. Have you ever seen an angel? They aren’t always dressed in white with dramatically arched wings. Sometimes they’re so ordinary that they’re overlooked. ‘Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing some people...More

Friday, May 5, 2023

A prayer of forgiveness

‘Forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you.’ Ephesians 4:32 NLT

The Bible says, ‘Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words, and slander, as well as all types of evil behaviour. Instead, be kind to each other, tender-hearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you’ (Ephesians 4:31-32 NLT). Are you struggling to forgive someone? Here is a prayer: ‘Lord, I praise You for forgiving me and washing my sins away. Reveal anything I need to confess to You today so that I can bring it before You and be cleansed and set free, especially any place in my...More

Thursday, May 4, 2023

Use your God-given creativity

‘He has filled them with skill to do all manner of work.’ Exodus 35:35 NKJV

The Bible says God ‘filled them with skill to do all manner of work of the engraver and the designer and the tapestry maker, in blue, purple, and scarlet thread, and fine linen, and of the weaver – those who do every work and those who design artistic works’ (Exodus 35:35 NKJV). When God calls you to do something, He has already placed within you the ability to accomplish it. Satan hopes you never discover that. He wants you to remain trapped in the status quo, believing that the way things are is how they will always be. Not so!...More

Wednesday, May 3, 2023

Money matters in marriage

‘He who is greedy for gain troubles his own house.’ Proverbs 15:27 NKJV

Today one of the biggest sources of conflict in marriage is money. That is because a husband and wife often have opposite ideas about how money ought to be used. Stop and consider the words ‘delayed gratification’. When one spouse is willing to delay purchasing something until their financial house is in order, but the other one isn’t, the battle lines begin to form. Another disagreement that can arise is deciding when and for what credit should be obtained. This is treacherous territory. Nothing irritates a disciplined, thrifty...More

Tuesday, May 2, 2023

Don’t wait; enjoy your life now

‘Nothing is better than that a man should rejoice in his own works, for that is his heritage.’ Ecclesiastes 3:22 NKJV

Solomon writes: ‘Nothing is better than that a man should rejoice in his own works.’ That is why we are here! No one can bring us back from death to enjoy life after we die.’ Begin now to think about what you can do to find more joy in every experience. The present moment is all you’re guaranteed, so don’t wait until later – until you get married, retire, go on holiday, or until your children finish university – to enjoy your life. No one knows what will happen next in their lives...More

Monday, May 1, 2023

Experiencing God’s presence and pleasure

‘In Your presence is fullness of joy.’ Psalm 16:11 NKJV

If you were miserable before you met Jesus, it’s easy to make the mistake of thinking that the only place His presence can be enjoyed is in church. No, you can enjoy His presence everywhere. At home, at work, at school, in business, and even in times of suffering and adversity. Brother Lawrence, a Carmelite monk in a French monastery, wrote the best-selling book, The Practice of the Presence of God. He resented his daily routine in the kitchen. Then God showed him that everything he did each day could be done for God and with God. That truth transformed...More

Sunday, April 30, 2023

Christ is coming again!

‘The day of the Lord will come as unexpectedly as a thief.’ 2 Peter 3:10 NLT

Don’t let date-setters make you cynical about Christ’s soon return. When the founder of a major church denomination predicted in print the date of Christ’s second coming, his successors faced the embarrassment of having to publicly acknowledge that they were wrong. Do you remember the alarmists of Y2K? Declaring a scientific certainty that the year 2000 would bring the end of the world and the return of Christ. They caused people to leave their jobs, sell their homes, stock up on food, and head for the hills. And because of such...More

Saturday, April 29, 2023

Start memorising Scriptures

‘Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly.’ Colossians 3:16 KJV

Before written languages were developed, memory was the only way to learn. In our day, memorising has got a bad name as rote learning. But memorising never makes your mind a duller place, just the opposite! When we have stored wonderful words in our memory, we will have a much richer inner life than someone who doesn’t. Eva Hermann spent two years in a Nazi prison camp. She wrote how a young cellmate happened to recite the prayer of St Teresa: ‘Let naught trouble thee; let naught frighten thee; all things pass. God alone changeth not....More

Friday, April 28, 2023

Change your expectations

‘These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you.’ John 15:11 KJV

Why did Jesus say, ‘These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full’? Because if you let it, stress will drain you of joy and consign you to a life of depression, dullness, and discontent. Let’s face it, most of us are way too serious! We make a big deal out of everything. Being five minutes late, getting stuck in traffic, somebody giving us a wrong look, waiting in line, overcooking a meal, gaining a pound, discovering a wrinkle, making an honest mistake, you name...More

Thursday, April 27, 2023

Servants for life

‘Paul, a bond-servant of Christ Jesus, called as an apostle.’ Romans 1:1 NASB

In the Bible the word minister isn’t just a noun (which denotes a person, place, or thing); it’s also a verb (an action word). It’s what you do, not what you claim to be. In Scripture, the word servant sometimes referred to a third-level galley slave chained to the oar of a Roman ship. Day and night, they rowed to the beat of another, and whether in battle or in merchant service, they expected to die chained to that oar. What a picture! Paul says, ‘Dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because...More

Wednesday, April 26, 2023

Build a relationship with your children

‘Except the LORD build the house, they labour in vain that build it.’ Psalm 127:1 KJV

How would you describe your relationship with your children? Strained? Exciting? Heart-breaking? Enjoyable? If you want a real eye-opener, ask them to describe their feelings about you and their home. But be warned, what they say might not be to your liking! And having a Christian home doesn’t necessarily exempt you. The old nature in us still rears its ugly head from time to time, and habits set in concrete can lead to broken communication. When biblical principles are ignored, the result is pain and strain in the family....More

Tuesday, April 25, 2023

Today, choose the right attitude

‘Be transformed by the renewing of your mind.’ Romans 12:2 NASB

Long before William James, the Father of American psychology, was attributed with saying, ‘The greatest discovery of my generation is that human beings can alter their lives by altering their attitudes,’ God said, ‘As a man thinks in his heart, so is he’ (Proverbs 23:7 NKJV). Often it’s our thoughts, not our circumstances, that determine our happiness. We keep thinking we will be happy when certain things happen. For example, a parent might say, ‘When little Tommy starts primary school, I will be happy.’ And they are, for a while....More

Monday, April 24, 2023

Beware of self-pity

‘No one should seek their own good, but the good of others.’ 1 Corinthians 10:24 NIV

Self-pity can be deadly. It tells the wife and mother who works hard, ‘You’re not appreciated.’ It says to the office worker, ‘Look how valuable you are, yet you’re never recognised or rewarded.’ It says to the unemployed, ‘No chance!’ To the divorced, ‘No place!’ To the bereaved, ‘No hope!’ And to the struggling, ‘No way!’ Look at the prophet Elijah. Twenty-four hours after his greatest victory, he is deeply depressed and wallowing in self-pity. ‘“I have had enough, Lord,” he said. “Take my...More

Sunday, April 23, 2023

He will do it again!

‘Jacob set up a memorial stone in the place where He had spoken with him,’ Genesis 35:14 NASB

There are events in all our lives that, looking back, had to be the hand of God at work. Maybe you bumped into somebody who introduced you to your spouse, or a co-worker resigned and suddenly you were promoted, or a stranger said something that spoke to your heart. These are all signs of God’s favour, and when you’re tempted to get down, you need to remember how God opened the door for you, how he made a way, or spared your life, or healed your child. There is no such thing as coincidence. When something good...More

Saturday, April 22, 2023

Setting captives free (2)

‘He brought them out of darkness and the shadow of death, And broke their chains in pieces.’
Psalm 107:14 NKJV

When the Israelites cried to the LORD, he saved them. He brought them out of darkness and broke their chains. (see Psalm 107:13-14). And He can set you free from whatever is holding you captive today. And not just temporary freedom, but long-term freedom: ‘”So if the Son sets you free, you really will be free.’ (John 8:36 CSB). Here are two steps you can take towards freedom: 1) Cry out to the Lord. God said, ‘You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.’...More

Friday, April 21, 2023

Setting captives free (1)

‘I have heard them crying out … and I am concerned about their suffering.’ Exodus 3:7 NIV

For four hundred years, Israel was enslaved by Egyptian taskmasters who oppressed them. You can understand their feelings of helplessness when you consider the areas in your life where you struggle for freedom from old habits. Whether it’s anger, food, alcohol, drugs, sex, money, or abusive relationships, we experience a sense of powerlessness in our struggle. And repeated bids for freedom can produce increased feelings of hopelessness that lead us to give up trying altogether. The Israelites cried out to God, and He...More

Thursday, April 20, 2023

Recovering from burnout

‘Even the youths shall faint and be weary,’ Isaiah 40:30 NKJV

Dr Richard Swenson says, ‘You can go into the woods, select a ten-foot sapling, bend it over, and when you release it, it will return to its normal height. But if you keep bending it further and further, it will stay down. With stress, first, you bend, and then you recover. With burnout, first, you bend, and then you break, and you stay broken. Burnout is not a figment of your imagination or a sensationalised diagnosis by psychologists. Exhaustion is real; it’s common, and it’s dangerous. It leads to irritability, anger, paranoia, headaches,...More

Wednesday, April 19, 2023

Don’t give up on your Saul

‘Go to the house of Judas on Straight Street and ask for … Saul, for he is praying.’ Acts 9:11 NIV

Has everyone else written off your Saul? ‘He is too far gone.’ ‘He is too hard, too addicted, too old, too cold.’ Joseph believed one day he would be reunited with the brothers who betrayed him, and it happened. The prophet Hosea’s wife deserted him and became a prostitute. Yet, he kept the door open, and she came home. God believed in Saul. And he believed in Saul through Ananias: ‘“Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus, who appeared to you on the road as you came, has sent me that you may receive your...More

Tuesday, April 18, 2023

You must care for the needy (3)

‘Blessed is he who considers the poor;’ Psalm 41:1 NKJV

In October 2022, Forbes stated there were 2,668 billionaires in the world. It’s incredible to think that one individual, let alone 2,668 individuals, can be worth billions of dollars, and yet there are billions of poor people in the world. Does that seem right? These individuals might easily say, ‘I worked for my money.’ But the question is, what responsibility does God place on the haves with regard to the have-nots? Surely donations made by even one of these individuals would eliminate the threat of starvation experienced by millions. So, why are...More

Monday, April 17, 2023

You must care for the needy (2)

‘He defended the cause of the poor and needy, and so all went well.’ Jeremiah 22:16 NIV

When he was a theology student, Jim Wallis and some of his classmates took scissors to the Bible and cut out every verse about poverty, wealth, justice, or oppression. And would you believe it, by the time they had finished, there were some two thousand verses lying on the floor! The fact is, when you cut concern for the poor from your Bible, you cut the heart right out of it! Here is one such verse: ‘“He defended the cause of the poor and needy, and so all went well. Is that not what it means to know me?” declares...More

Sunday, April 16, 2023

You must care for the needy (1)

‘Their widows were being overlooked in the daily distribution of food.’ Acts 6:1 NIV

Since the government didn’t care for widows and orphans back in New Testament times, the church took on that responsibility. Unfortunately, bias raised its ugly head, and Jewish widows and orphans were given preferential treatment over Gentile widows and orphans. How did the church leaders respond? They could easily have dismissed it like we so often do. They could have said, ‘We’re called to feed souls, not stomachs. We deal in matters of sin and salvation, not sandals and soup.’ Instead, here is what they did. First,...More

Saturday, April 15, 2023

You’re a reflector

‘But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord,’ 2 Corinthians 3:18 NKJV

As the old saying goes, ‘You become like the company you keep.’ Paul explains it this way: ‘But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.’ (2 Corinthians 3:18 NKJV). Christians, like mirrors, reflect the glory of God. The more you spend time in God’s presence, the more you will reflect His likeness and carry His presence with you. What does beholding your face in a...More

Friday, April 14, 2023

Give God all the glory

‘For they did not gain possession of the land by their own sword,’ Psalm 44:3 NKJV

A frog was running out of water, so he asked two birds to transport him to a nearby pond by having each bird carry one end of a stick in their beak while he bit down on the centre and held on. It was a sight to behold: two birds, one stick, and a frog in the middle. A cow looked up, saw the trio passing overhead, and asked, ‘Who thought of that?’ The frog couldn’t resist. Pride prevailed over prudence. ‘It was meeee!’ he yelled as he plummeted to earth. Don’t make the same error. ‘Pride goes before destruction, and...More

Thursday, April 13, 2023

Christ’s love for you

‘To know Christ’s love that surpasses knowledge.’ Ephesians 3:19 CSB

Princess Alice was Queen Victoria’s daughter. When her son contracted an incurable disease called black diphtheria, the doctors quarantined the boy and warned his mother to stay away from him lest she gets infected. Yet she couldn’t. One day she overheard her son whisper to his nurse, ‘Why doesn’t my mother kiss me anymore?’ His words melted her heart, and she ran to him, smothering him with kisses. Within a few days, she died and was buried. What would compel a mother to risk her life for her child? Love! Now stand at the cross...More

Wednesday, April 12, 2023

A heart filled with goodness

‘A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart.’ Luke 6:45 NIV

Where does goodness come from, and how can you cultivate more of it in your daily decisions and actions? Some people think goodness is a matter of the head and that right-thinking results in right living. Today every politician gives the impression that education is the panacea for practically every problem in society. Yet education of the head, without the same emphasis on the integrity of the heart, will produce only clever fiends. If education alone were the answer, white-collar crimes would likely drop. Others think...More

Tuesday, April 11, 2023

Are you having a night-time experience?

‘Bless the LORD, all you...who by night stand in the house of the LORD!’ salm 134:1 NKJV

God divided time into days and nights. So, you will have daytime experiences and night-time experiences. For example, you can have a night-time experience in a divorce court, in bankruptcy proceedings, in an unemployment line, or at a graveside. And because you can’t see clearly at night, it’s easy to wonder if God is really there with you. Take heart – He is! With Pharaoh’s armies behind them and the Red Sea in front of them, the Israelites faced their greatest challenge. But the Bible says, ‘All that night the...More

Monday, April 10, 2023

Showing grace towards those who differ from you

‘But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.’ 2 Peter 3:18 KJV

Think how much happier and more energised you would be if you weren’t trying to control people and straighten them out. Allow your loved ones the dignity of making their own mistakes and learning from them. If you’re always getting into someone else’s business, you’re not only going to burn out; you’re hindering God from working in their lives. They belong to Him, not you!’ In the New Testament, when legalistic Jewish believers tried to impose kosher laws on Gentile believers, Paul wrote: ‘Those who...More

Sunday, April 9, 2023

Theory or Truth (3)

‘He was raised to life to make us right with God.’ Romans 4:25 NLT

The Great Houdini promised he’d come back from the dead and talk to his friends. Some of them actually consulted mediums to see if there was any word from beyond the grave. But there wasn’t! Only one man who promised to rise from the dead kept His promise: Jesus! And He did it ‘to make us right with God.’

Business transactions in Bible days were relatively uncomplicated. Once the seller laid down a price and the buyer picked it up, the deal was done. On Good Friday, Jesus laid down the price. God picked it up on Easter...More

Saturday, April 8, 2023

Theory or Truth (2)

‘Jesus answered them, “Destroy this temple [Body], and I will raise it again in three days.”’ John 2:19 NIV

Let’s examine another theory put forth by those who try to disprove the truth of Christ’s bodily resurrection called the ‘Swoon Theory’. In his book, The Passover Plot, Hugh J. Schonfield theorises that Jesus simply swooned, was taken down from the cross, and was thought to be dead. Then in the coolness of the tomb, He revived, came out and convinced His disciples that He’d actually risen from the dead. It raises some interesting questions. For example, how come, for eighteen hundred years...More

Friday, April 7, 2023

Theory or Truth (1)

‘We believe that Jesus died and rose again.’ 1 Thessalonians 4:14 NIV

Let’s look at some theories peddled by those who’ve tried to deny the Resurrection. Some say that the Gospels were written two to three hundred years after the event, so the story was either falsified or embellished. But archaeology disproves that. Now we know that the Gospels go back to the authors whose names they bear, and that the testimony of the Resurrection goes back to the same decade in which it took place, not centuries later. So, there was no time for legend to develop!

Some say that the disciples experienced...More

Thursday, April 6, 2023

Onwards and upwards

‘I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God.’ Philippians 3:14 NKJV

To fulfil God’s will for your life, you must do these: 1) Move to a higher level of faith (see Romans 1:17). Before David killed Goliath, he first had to kill a lion and a bear. And today, we’re contending with issues that require us to trust God in a greater way. 2) Seek God’s guidance about each situation that arises (see Proverbs 3:6). His promise is: ‘I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will guide you with My eye’ (Psalm 32:8 NKJV). 3) Get into proper spiritual alignment. God is...More

Wednesday, April 5, 2023

Simplify your life

‘”Come to me, all of you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”’ Matthew 11:28 CSB

The average office worker is bombarded each day with over two hundred messages via email, texts, tweets, and blogs. In fact, one in three managers gets sick because of information overload. It’s a blizzard out there! It makes you wonder, if technology is saving us all this time and energy, how come we’re so frazzled? Success presents more opportunities for the Enemy to run you into the ground. That’s no way to live, and it certainly isn’t God’s will for you. Don’t wait until you hit bottom, get...More

Tuesday, April 4, 2023

Guard these three areas of vulnerability

‘Let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall.’ 1 Corinthians 10:12 NKJV

Here are three areas where we’re particularly vulnerable: 1) Discouragement. In a moment of discouragement, Peter did what he swore he would never do: deny Jesus. Discouragement makes you say things you don’t mean and do things that are out of character. That’s why Jude writes, ‘But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit, keep yourselves in the love of God,’ (Jude 1:20-21 NASB). 2) Excitement. Herod became excited by a dancing girl, threw caution to the wind, and made an...More

Monday, April 3, 2023

You have to walk out the process

‘Every place that the sole of your foot will tread upon I have given you,’ Joshua 1:3 NKJV

The book of Job has forty-two chapters. In the first forty-one chapters, Job experienced the loss of his health, his wealth, and his family. Over and over again, he questioned God but got only silence for an answer. But he kept walking with God and said, ‘When he has tested me, I shall come forth as gold’ (Job 23:10 NIV). Notice three things: First, to become gold, you have to go through the fire. Second, the degree of heat and the amount of time required is determined by the refiner. Third, when you try to rush the...More

Sunday, April 2, 2023

How God sees you

‘Since you are precious in My sight’ Isaiah 43:4 NASB

Have you ever gone to a car boot sale hoping to find a bargain? To the untrained eye, much of the stuff looks like rubbish. It may even have been gathering dust and mildew in somebody’s loft. But the trained eye sees treasure in disguise, items that just need to be cleaned, polished and restored in order to become valuable again. That’s what God does with us. When Satan tells you you’re worthless, God looks inside you and sees hidden treasure. When you make Jesus the Lord of your life, He enables you to overcome your past, resist temptation, conquer...More

Saturday, April 1, 2023

Go to the right source

‘I should speedily escape to the land of the Philistines;’ 1 Samuel 27:1 NKJV

The Bible says, ‘David said in his heart, “Now I shall perish someday by the hand of Saul. There is nothing better for me than that I should speedily escape to the land of the Philistines;”’ (v. 1 NKJV). Now, in times past, David had enquired of the LORD (see Samuel 23:2, 4). He also sought advice from experienced, proven counsellors. But this time, he was guided by his fears and ended up defecting to enemy territory. And it gave him a temporary sense of relief. Looking to the wrong source can do that, but it doesn’t last....More

Friday, March 31, 2023

Try a power nap

‘When you lie down, your sleep will be sweet.’ Proverbs 3:24 NIV

God built specific triggers into our bodies to let us know when it’s time to escape consciousness. And wise people listen to these clues. History’s most notable power nappers include Albert Einstein, Thomas Edison, and Winston Churchill. There is a reason why your eyelids start to droop around 2:00 p.m. The levator muscles, which constantly contract to keep your eyelids open, give out and beg for a break. And a chemical called adenosine, which collects in your brain when you’re awake, piles up and makes you feel drowsy. Consequently, your...More

Thursday, March 30, 2023

Seek God for direction

‘Commit to the LORD whatever you do, and he will establish your plans.’ Proverbs 16:3 NIV

As a follower of Jesus, your direction shouldn’t come from people and be confirmed by God, it should come from God and be confirmed by people. The Bible says: ‘The preparations of the heart belong to man, But the answer of the tongue is from the LORD. All the ways of a man are pure in his own eyes, But the LORD weighs the spirits. Commit your works to the LORD, And your thoughts will be established. The LORD has made all for Himself,’ (Proverbs 16:1-4 NKJV). You may be able to do what someone else has done and do it...More

Wednesday, March 29, 2023

Learn to control your anger

‘Sensible people control their temper; they earn respect by overlooking wrongs.’ Proverbs 19:11 NLT

When it comes to anger, here is what you need to know: it isn’t a psychological disorder; everybody gets angry. And it’s not necessarily a sin. Like a fast-flowing river, it can generate constructive or destructive energy and be unleashed negatively or harnessed positively. Anger is commonly misunderstood as something that’s done to us by others or by circumstances. We say, ‘I couldn’t help it; they pushed my buttons!’ In the Garden of Eden, Adam said, ‘The woman you gave me made me do it!’ Since...More

Tuesday, March 28, 2023

The joys of heaven (3)

‘There will no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain;’ Revelation 21:4 NASB

Sometimes we describe dying as crossing the Jordan. That’s because the Jordan River runs into the Dead Sea. The story is told of an elderly Christian lady who was dying. For most of her life, illness had confined her to bed or a wheelchair. The family gathered to say farewell. Holding her hand, one of her grandchildren asked, ‘Are you afraid to die?’ With tears of joy, she replied, ‘No, I’m not afraid of death because my Father owns the land on both sides of the river.’ What an answer! In heaven, there will be no...More

Monday, March 27, 2023

The joys of heaven (2)

‘The city is laid out as a square; its length is as great as its breadth.’ Revelation 21:16 NKJV

The next time you feel cramped for space, read this: ‘The city is laid out as a square; its length is as great as its breadth. And he measured the city with the reed: twelve thousand furlongs. Its length, breadth, and height are equal’ (v. 16 NKJV). That’s an area of over two million square miles, making the new Jerusalem bigger than most countries in the world. In fact, it’s almost twenty-four times larger than the United Kingdom and over half the size of the entire continent of Europe! A city that big...More

Sunday, March 26, 2023

The joys of heaven (1)

‘For our citizenship is in heaven,’ Philippians 3:20 NASB

The story is told of a pastor who asked his congregation, ‘How many of you want to go to heaven?’ Everyone raised their hand except one little boy. The pastor said, ‘Son, don’t you want to go to heaven?’ He replied, ‘Yes, but I thought you were getting up a batch to go right now!’ Let’s be honest, we don’t think or talk much about heaven until a loved one dies and goes there, or we grow old and feel like we have fulfilled our assignment here on earth. Then we feel a tug pulling us heavenward. And we should. On average, we will spend...More

Saturday, March 25, 2023

Steps to forgiveness (2)

‘Forgive, and you will be forgiven.’ Luke 6:37 NIV

Here are three more steps to forgiveness: 1) Accept people as they are and don’t try to change them. You say, ‘I’ll only forgive them if they change.’ That just keeps you tied to them, obsessing over what they did and demanding they act in ways that you approve of. Nothing makes people less willing to change than when you try to control them and demand that they meet your requirements. Changing people isn’t your job – it’s God’s job! Your job is to choose to forgive and leave the outcome in God’s hands. The formula for healing is simple:...More

Friday, March 24, 2023

Steps to forgiveness (1)

‘Forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another;’ Colossians 3:13 NKJV

The misery of living with unforgiveness in your heart always lasts longer than the pain of the offence. Always! When you hold on to resentment, you open the door to depression and physical illness. Forgiving brings healing to your wounds and restores your joy. Here are two steps to help you forgive: 1) Remember that you have been unconditionally forgiven. Recall God’s grace towards you and the price paid for your forgiveness. By refusing to show mercy, you’re like the man Jesus said was forgiven an enormous debt, yet...More

Thursday, March 23, 2023

Today, give your problem to God

‘Cast your burden on the LORD, and he will sustain you.’ Psalm 55:22 ESV

If you grow up in hard times, you will automatically do one of these two things: 1) Trust God more because you have experienced His faithfulness. 2) Worry, think, and incessantly talk about the what-ifs in life. And there are lots of them to think about because the future rests in God’s hands and not yours. A thing can seem much bigger to you than it really is. That’s the essence of worry. It’s like a snowball; it starts small, but as you roll it over and over in your mind, it becomes bigger and bigger until it has the potential to...More

Wednesday, March 22, 2023

When your best isn’t good enough

‘”Master, we worked hard all night and caught nothing, but I will do as You say...”’ Luke 5:5 NASB

You say: ‘What happened to the verse in Galatians 6 that promises whatever you sow you will also reap? I gave it my best shot. I trusted, sacrificed, did the right things, yet reaped nothing.’ Whether it’s a lack of reaping in your finances, job, marriage, children, or ministry, it’s discouraging and sometimes makes you feel like giving up. The disciples were experienced fishermen. But they had fished all night and caught nothing, so now they were discouraged. And that’s when Jesus showed up! When...More

Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Be faithful to God at work

‘Whatever you do, do it from the heart, as something done for the Lord and not for people,’
Colossians 3:23 CSB

If you were in charge of hiring people at work, what would you look for? Skill, dedication, punctuality, reliability, patience, kindness, and consistency? Jesus said, ‘”Whoever is faithful in very little is also faithful in much,”’ (Luke 16:10 CSB). Life mostly consists of little things, so if you’re unfaithful in little things, you will be unfaithful in most of life. Do you possess a guilt pile at work? It’s that little stack of items you haven’t got around to yet. Faithfulness...More

Monday, March 20, 2023

Faith that brings results

‘Believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.’ Hebrews 11:6 NKJV

Here are three truths from Scripture that will make your faith more effective: First, believe that God is. The force of the language used here is much more than a vague acknowledgment of God’s existence. Mankind claims scores of gods, but the God of the Bible is not one of them or even the best of them. He is the only true God! And this Scripture says He is uniquely, genuinely, permanently present and active. Second, believe that God is able. When two blind men approached Jesus seeking healing, He asked,...More

Sunday, March 19, 2023

Are you raising children alone?

‘Weeping may last through the night, but joy comes with the morning.’ Psalm 30:5 NLT

One marriage expert says a single mother sent him a story that helped explain the loneliness and stress often faced by those raising children alone. She said she was looking out of her window one drizzly day and saw a mother robin and her little ones perched in a nest. As the rain poured down, the mother bird covered her chirping chicks beneath her extended wings. Then the hail began to fall. Instead of tucking her head safely in the nest, the mother robin raised her head upward and took the blows to protect her young. All of...More

Saturday, March 18, 2023

Not hopefully but surely

‘Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life.’ Psalm 23:6 NKJV

The psalmist doesn’t lead with words like maybe, perhaps, possibly, or hopefully. No, he says, surely, which is a term of certainty. Surely means absolutely; without a doubt! There are a lot of things in life you can’t be sure of. You go for a physical check-up and discover you have a malignant growth. You work in the same company for years believing your job is secure, then they downsize, and suddenly you’re unemployed. You pray for your children, live an exemplary life before them, and teach them what’s right, then...More

Friday, March 17, 2023

Use your gift

‘God has given each of you a gift.’ 1 Peter 4:10 NLT

The Bible says: ‘God has given each of you a gift from his great variety … Use them well to serve one another. Do you have the gift of speaking? Then speak as though God himself were speaking through you. Do you have the gift of helping others? Do it with all the strength and energy that God supplies. Then everything you do will bring glory to God’ (1 Peter 4:10-11 NLT). You may not be fortunate enough to work at a job that utilises your gifts, but you should at least be moving in that direction. Paul worked as a tentmaker to finance his calling as a...More

Thursday, March 16, 2023

How Jesus dealt with sin

‘Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more.’ John 8:11 NKJV

‘Then the scribes and Pharisees brought to Him a woman caught in adultery … they said to Him, “Teacher … Moses, in the law, commanded us that such should be stoned. But what do You say?” … Jesus stooped down and wrote on the ground with His finger, as though He did not hear. So when they continued asking Him, He raised Himself up and said to them, “He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first.” … When Jesus had raised Himself up and saw no one but the woman, He said to her, “Woman, where are those accusers...More

Wednesday, March 15, 2023

How God leads us

‘Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.’ Psalm 119:105 NASB

The words ‘Your word is a lamp to my feet’ mean you’re supposed to walk according to God’s will and not your own thoughts, wishes, or impulses. The words ‘and a light to my path’ mean you can’t go in any direction you choose; you must follow the path that God has planned for you. You will never go wrong consulting the Scriptures for direction, but make sure you keep the Scriptures in context. Don’t use the open-window method, allowing the wind to blow across the pages of your Bible, then shutting your eyes, pointing to...More

Tuesday, March 14, 2023

The story of your Bible

‘“The word of the LORD endures forever.” Now this is the word which by the gospel was preached to you.’ 1 Peter 1:25 NKJV

The early Bible was not available in English, but was only available in Latin, the language of the clergy, and those were chained to the podiums of the cathedrals. Then John Wycliffe, a prominent professor of divinity at Oxford University, said, ‘This is not right. People should be able to read the Bible in their own language.’ Church leaders branded him a heretic and an instrument of the devil. Like Noah, who pounded the nails into the ark while people ridiculed and scorned him,...More

Monday, March 13, 2023

Focus on your God-given vision

‘I was not disobedient unto the heavenly vision.’ Acts 26:19 KJV

When God gives you a vision of what He wants you to do, you will have to go against the flow of the world. Society wants to keep you in a box. Most people are married mentally to the status quo. They want what was, not what can be. They seek safety and simple answers. So, you need to give yourself permission to go a different way, to break new ground. Paul said, ‘I was not disobedient unto the heavenly vision.’ It was his consuming passion and the central focus of his life. He got up every morning thinking about it and went to bed every night...More

Sunday, March 12, 2023

Steps to overcoming your worries

‘I know that you can do all things.’ Job 42:2 NIV

Job lost his wealth, his health, and his children. The book he wrote is a conversation between himself and God. At the beginning of it, Job says, ‘Hear now my reasoning’ (Job 13:6 NKJV). He is asking, ‘Why has all this happened to me?’ At this point, he is totally self-focused. But by the middle of his book, Job has grown spiritually, and now he takes a different approach. Instead of reasoning, he decides to stand on God’s Word: ‘But he knows the way that I take; when he has tested me, I shall come forth as gold. My feet have closely followed his...More

Saturday, March 11, 2023

Your overflowing cup of blessing

‘My cup runs over.’ Psalm 23:5 NKJV

David said: ‘Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You anoint my head with oil; my cup runs over’ (Psalm 23:4-5 NKJV). Notice God didn’t promise that you wouldn’t have to deal with death, fear, evil, or enemies. He simply said that in spite of them, and sometimes in the midst of them, your cup will still overflow with His blessing. Your God is a God of surplus. Paul writes, ‘God will generously...More

Friday, March 10, 2023

How is your giving?

‘On the first day of every week, each of you is to put aside and save as he may prosper, so that no collections need to be made when I come.’ 1 Corinthians 16:2 NASB

Jesus said, ‘If you have not been trustworthy in handling worldly wealth, who will trust you with true riches?’ (Luke 16:11 NIV). In other words, if you are not faithful to Him with your finances, He will not trust you with greater blessings. What does it mean to be faithful in your finances? Paul writes: ‘On the first day of every week, each of you is to put aside and save as he may prosper so that no collections need to be made when I...More

Thursday, March 9, 2023

When you feel drained

‘He makes me to lie down in green pastures.’ Psalm 23:2 NKJV

Life can still be draining even when you’re living right and doing all the right things. We have all received mail addressed simply to The Occupant. Sometimes you’re drained not because you did anything wrong but because you happen to occupy the planet. The combination of the world, the flesh, and the devil will suck the spiritual vitality right out of you if you let them. You try to pray, but no words come. You know you ought to read your Bible, but when you try to, the letters on the page all run together, and none of it makes sense. And you...More

Wednesday, March 8, 2023

It’s time to pray (2)

‘In the day of my trouble I sought the Lord.’ Psalm 77:2 KJV

Here are two important prayer principles: 1) Talk to God when troubles surround you. If you’re like most people, good times can make you trust in yourself instead of God. It’s the troubled times that drive you to your knees. A bad medical report, a child hooked on drugs, a lost job, or a troubled marriage. That’s God’s intention in allowing troubled times! He allows trouble to afflict us not to make us miserable but to bring us to Himself. Hosea, the prophet, said, ‘I will depart and return to my place until they recognise their guilt and...More

Tuesday, March 7, 2023

It’s time to pray (1)

‘Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.’ Psalm 51:7 NKJV

Do you remember when most restaurants had opening and closing hours? It was their schedule, and not your appetite, that decided whether you ate or went hungry. Not anymore: now you can pop into many of your favourite eating places anytime your appetite hits. That’s how God operates; He is available 24/7. And although praying isn’t limited to set times, there are certain times when it’s vital that you talk to God. Here are two: 1) When you have sinned. Your emotions of guilt and shame, plus Satan, the accuser, will tell you to avoid God. But...More

Monday, March 6, 2023

Getting beyond the guesswork (3)

‘What He opens, no one can close; and what He closes, no one can open.’ Revelation 3:7 NLT

Here are two more ways to know God’s will for your life: 1) Providential circumstances. When God is leading, the way will open up for you. When He sends you, He goes before you (see John 10:4). His Word says, ‘What He opens, no one can close; and what He closes, no one can open.’ Who opens the right doors? God. Who closes the wrong doors? God. The right doors lead to blessing, but the wrong doors lead to pain and loss. Plus, nothing but unbelief can keep a door closed once God commands it to open. The only help God...More

Sunday, March 5, 2023

Getting beyond the guesswork (2)

‘The Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth.’ John 16:13 NKJV

Always do these two things: 1) Recognise God’s Word as the final authority for deciding God’s will (see Isaiah 8:20). The Bible speaks clearly on life’s important issues. Every other source of guidance must agree with it. And you don’t need a theological degree; just let God speak to you through His Word before seeking anybody else’s opinion. For example, to tell a lie is unacceptable (see Leviticus 19:11). Likewise, having an extramarital affair is wrong because the Bible clearly says, ‘You shall not commit...More

Saturday, March 4, 2023

Getting beyond the guesswork (1)

‘For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.’ Philippians 2:13 NKJ

Remember the childhood game Pin the Tail on the Donkey? Winning in that game was a stab-in-the-dark process. And for many of God’s children, determining His will and purpose for their lives amounts to a similar method. But it doesn’t have to. Here are some scriptural steps that take the guesswork out of it. 1) Commit yourself to obeying God’s will. Understanding God’s will is impossible until you commit yourself unreservedly to doing it. Any desire to retain your own will blinds you to His. You...More

Friday, March 3, 2023

What are you hiding behind?

‘He is hiding among the baggage.’ 1 Samuel 10:22 NLT

When Samuel went to present Israel’s first king to the people, Saul was discovered hiding among the baggage. The Hebrew word for baggage symbolises the self-imposed limitations that hinder you from tackling the job God appointed you to do. Things like these: 1) Feelings of inadequacy. Saul’s first response when he learned he had been chosen as king was, ‘Am I not…from the smallest tribe of Israel,…the least of all?’ (1 Samuel 9:21 NIV). When you fail to figure God into the equation, you will always feel less than. Instead of focusing on your...More

Thursday, March 2, 2023

Don’t even THINK about giving up!

‘We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not despairing;’ 2 Corinthians 4:8 NASB

We give up because: 1) We fear failure. Past hurts and mistakes haunt us, and we think it’s better not to try again than risk failing. Don’t spend your life digging up bones! We all have things in our past that we would rather forget. Put them behind you. Paul writes, ‘Forgetting what is behind and reaching forward to what is ahead’ (Philippians 3:13 CSB). 2) We worry about what people will say. ‘The fear of man brings a snare’ (Proverbs 29:25 NKJV). How you respond to criticism is one of the...More

Wednesday, March 1, 2023

Start fresh every day!

‘A quick-tempered person does foolish things.’ Proverbs 14:17 NIV

You overslept, the car wouldn’t start, you were late for work, and your computer crashed! These things can make you angry, but only if you let them. Solomon said, ‘A quick-tempered person does foolish things,’ so if you fly into a rage, expect a rough landing! The Bible says, ‘He who is slow to anger is better than the mighty, And he who rules his spirit than he who takes a city.’ (Proverbs 16:32 NKJV). Anger always comes back to bite you and ends up doing more damage than the thing that triggered it. David said, ‘My voice You shall...More

Tuesday, February 28, 2023

Delivered from People-Pleasing

‘'I will deliver you from the Jewish people, as well as from the Gentiles, to whom I now send you,’
Acts 26:17 NKJV

Paul’s ministry began when he met Jesus on the road to Damascus. In that humbling encounter, the Lord said to him: ‘“Now get to your feet! For I have appeared to you to appoint you as my servant and witness. You are to tell the world what you have seen and what I will show you in the future. And I will rescue you from both your own people and the Gentiles. Yes, I am sending you to the Gentiles to open their eyes, so they may turn from darkness to light …'’’ (Acts 26:16–18...More

Monday, February 27, 2023

What an insurance policy!!!

‘All the days of my life.’ Psalm 23:6 NKJV

Most insurance companies are trustworthy. They will cover you through most of the seasons and adversities of life. But not all insurance companies are that way. In some cases, the moment you make a claim against them, they either hike your premiums through the roof or cancel your policy. But the insurance policy you have with God is awesome. The premiums were paid in the crimson cash of Jesus’ blood when He spoke these words: ‘It is finished,’ which means paid in full. There are different kinds of insurance policies that cover things like fire, property, theft,...More

Sunday, February 26, 2023

Navigating life’s losses (4)

‘A time to keep, And a time to throw away.’ Ecclesiastes 3:6 NKJV

What else do our children need from us when they’re grieving? 1) Our honesty. They need to know we’re hurting too. When they see you crying, but you tell them, ‘I’m all right,’ they’re confused. They think either you’re not hurting, and tears don’t mean anything, or you’re not being real with them. They need to know the genuine you, so they can be real with you and trust you with their hurts. 2) Our awareness of their feelings without overprotecting them. For them, as for you, ‘There is a time to weep…mourn…lose’...More

Saturday, February 25, 2023

Navigating life’s losses (3)

‘A time to gain, and a time to lose.’ Ecclesiastes 3:6 NKJV

How can we help children navigate life’s losses? 1) Don’t underestimate their capacity for grief. Children are often the forgotten grievers. Their pain is real and intense; recognise and validate it. 2) Don’t avoid talking about the loss when they’re present. Excluding them from adults in mourning denies them the opportunity for support and increased understanding of their loss. Include them in the family’s collective grief experience. 3) Encourage them to share their feelings about the loss. Teach them that being real is more important than...More

Friday, February 24, 2023

Navigating life’s losses (2)

‘A time to be born, and a time to die.’ Ecclesiastes 3:2 KJV

Researchers at the Colorado Institute of Grief offer us this helpful four-stage path to recovery. Stage 1) Shock. Our initial response is one of denial and disbelief. ‘I can’t believe this is happening! There is a numbing of our senses, a God-designed natural anaesthesia that buffers the early blow and allows us time to gather our coping mechanisms. Stage 2) Protest. We feel anger and resentment against God, yet we feel guilty for blaming Him. We may blame ourselves, the doctors, or the patient and question God’s love and faithfulness, and even...More

Thursday, February 23, 2023

Navigating life’s losses (1)

‘A time to mourn, And a time to dance.’ Ecclesiastes 3:4 NKJV

God’s Word neither ignores nor minimises the painful realities of life. Inevitably, we, and our loved ones, will experience life’s losses: illness, ageing, death, divorce, disability, loss of independence, unemployment, financial reversals, etc. Today’s culture prepares us for gain, but not for loss; to dance, but not to mourn. Major losses throw us into unchartered territory. So, we need to understand the dynamics of our loss in order to help us through it and back to living again. Life-changing loss begins with bereavement – the agony of...More

Wednesday, February 22, 2023

Are you being sifted?

‘Satan has asked to sift all of you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers.’ Luke 22:31-32 NIV

When Jesus told Peter, “Satan has asked to sift all of you as wheat,” it raises the question in our minds, Lord, did you have to say yes? A good sifting brings glory to God, such as when Job continued to praise his Maker when things seemed lost and even his wife was telling him to give up on God. It probes your weaknesses. When you’re still thinking, ‘I can,’ a swift sift will push you to say, ‘I can’t, but God...More

Tuesday, February 21, 2023

Let God lead you

‘He leads me in the paths of righteousness.’ Psalm 23:3 NKJV

Life is full of choices, decisions, and options. It’s also full of people with strong opinions who will try to tell you which way they think you ought to go. If we could turn back the hands of time, nearly all of us would alter some of our past choices because they have caused us to find ourselves on the path of wrongness rather than righteousness. Sheep will gravitate towards whatever appeals to their instincts, such as a berry bush, even though it will take them away from the flock and the shepherd’s protective care. They think they know the...More

Monday, February 20, 2023

Broken arrows

‘As arrows are in the hand of a mighty man; so are children of the youth.’ Psalm 127:4 KJV

Children are like arrows; they must be aimed in the right direction. When they’re aimed in the wrong direction, they may become involved in harmful habits or destructive lifestyles. And as long as we jeer at or judge them, they will never feel comfortable turning to us for help as they go through life. Broken arrows come in all forms. Pain isn’t prejudiced; it spares no age group, cultural background, or social strata. What’s the answer? Let the strong bear the infirmities of the weak (see Romans 15:1)....More

Sunday, February 19, 2023

You are thirsty for God

‘Give me this water so that I won’t get thirsty.’ John 4:15 NIV

This Samaritan woman tried to fill the emptiness in her life with multiple relationships. But it didn’t work. When you try to find in anyone else what can only be found in Christ, you place so much stress on the relationship that it will break under the weight of it. Why did Jesus say, ‘You have had five husbands, and the man you now have is not your husband’ (John 4:18 NIV)? Because one of the first things hurting people need to do is break the pattern of using other people as a narcotic to dull the pain of their inner void. The more you...More

Saturday, February 18, 2023

Jesus wants to set you free

‘But when Jesus saw her, He called her to Him and said to her, “Woman, you are loosed from your infirmity.”’ Luke 13:12 NKJV

The Bible says: ‘There was a woman who had a spirit of infirmity eighteen years, and was bent over and could in no way raise herself up. But when Jesus saw her, He called her to Him and said to her, “Woman, you are loosed from your infirmity”’ (Luke 13:11-12 NKJV). Notice four things in this story: the person, the problem, the Great Physician, and the prescription. For every person, including you, there will be a problem. But more importantly, for every problem, including...More

Friday, February 17, 2023

You will get through this

‘To every thing there is a season … A time to weep, and a time to laugh.’ Ecclesiastes 3:1, 4 KJV

Sorrow comes to us in many forms. You can lose your job, your home, or your health. But nothing hurts more than when you lose someone you love dearly. Waves of grief will come at you like the ocean throwing its waves up onto the beach. Whatever you do, don’t drown. Don’t stop there and allow yourself to be pulled under by the current. Allow yourself to feel the grief without tying it around your neck. Allow the weight of it to help you work through your thoughts, fears, and, if necessary, your tears....More

Thursday, February 16, 2023

You can change your self-perception

‘By the grace of God I am what I am.’ 1 Corinthians 15:10 NIV

The new birth begins a transforming process in how you think about yourself. But it must be continued each day by renewing your mind. ‘Let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect’ (Romans 12:2 NLT). When your thinking is changed by God’s Word, two things happen: a) you know His will for you, and b) you know He is pleased with you. When those two things happen, your self-perception is changed, and you’re no longer at the mercy...More

Wednesday, February 15, 2023

Instead of worrying, trust God

‘Don’t worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.’ Philippians 4:6 CSB

Paul writes: ‘Don't worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.’ (Philippians 4:6-7 CSB). Worry is like sitting in a rocking chair; it’s always in motion, and it keeps you busy, but it never actually gets you anywhere. In fact, if you do it too long, it wears you out! That’s why...More

Tuesday, February 14, 2023

Respond the right way

‘We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials.’ Romans 5:3 NLT

In World War II, Viktor Frankl was sentenced to a Nazi concentration camp. The guards deprived him of everything. They took his wife, his family, and his clothes. They even stole his wedding ring. But he had one thing no one could take from him. In a classic book, he wrote, ‘The last of human freedoms is the ability to choose one’s attitude in a given set of circumstances.’ The guards could not take from Frankl his freedom to choose his attitude. We do not know what is going to occur tomorrow or even today. We can’t control all...More

Monday, February 13, 2023

You can have peace of mind

‘The LORD blesses his people with peace.’ Psalm 29:11 NIV

Everybody wants peace of mind. Whether you’re a businessperson facing the pressure of deadlines, a homemaker trying to round up kids, or a student trying to make it through the university term, everyone wants peace of mind. But most of us experience more stress than peace. How acquainted are you with stress? ‘Here is a little quiz. Complete each of these sentences with the appropriate word: ‘I’m ready to throw in the…I’m at the end of my...I’m just a bundle of...My life is falling...I’m at my wits’…I feel like resigning from the...More

Sunday, February 12, 2023

You are being pruned (2)

‘My suffering was good for me,...’ Psalm 119:71 NLT

God uses problems, pressures, and people to prune you for greater fruitfulness. Are you aware of Him using any of these three things in your life today? God can use all situations in your life to help you grow if you will just have the right attitude. He will use a major frustration, a financial setback, a sudden sickness, a broken marriage, a rebellious child, or even the death of a loved one to get your attention. You say, ‘But it hurts so much!’ Yes, pruning is painful. Sometimes a gardener will prune a tree until it looks like a totem pole or a giant...More

Saturday, February 11, 2023

You are being pruned (1)

‘But God’s discipline is always good for us...’ Hebrews 12:10 NLT

Did you know that some master gardeners actually talk to their plants? Why? Because it helps them grow! Imagine yourself saying, ‘You’re such a good plant. My, you are looking fine today! I’m so proud of you!’ Now picture yourself talking to a plant you’re pruning and saying, ‘This pains me more than it pains you.’ Whack! ‘You will thank me for this afterwards!’ Whack! ‘It’s for your own good!’ Whack! Now picture the plant talking back: ‘You don’t have a heart. You hate me. I’ve worked long and hard to make those...More

Friday, February 10, 2023

Always treat people with respect

‘Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect,...’ 1 Peter 3:15 NIV

The Bible says, ‘Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, …’ Two ways to get an egg out of an eggshell are to 1) crack it open or 2) put it in a warm, loving environment and allow it to incubate and hatch. The second way preserves the chick, while the first one kills it. Similarly, two ways to get the good news of the gospel...More

Thursday, February 9, 2023

Committed and connected

‘So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and individually members of one another.’ Romans 12:5 NKJV

The Bible describes the Christian life in war terms: fight, conquer, strive, battle, overcome, and victory. Whether you realise it or not, you’re in a spiritual battle, and you need support and backup. When you became a Christian, you became a member of God’s army. Imagine you go to a recruiting office to join the Army. They say, ‘Wonderful, sign here.’ You say: ‘Wait! I have one stipulation. I don’t want to be committed to any particular platoon. I want to be able to float around. I’ll be part...More

Wednesday, February 8, 2023

Faithfulness (4)

‘Great is thy faithfulness.’ Lamentations 3:23 KJV

Faithfulness can turn the most menial job into a vitally important one. For example, think about how dependent we are on something as small as a postage stamp. It’s always ready for service. It goes wherever it’s sent. It does whatever it’s asked to do. It sticks to the task until it’s done. It doesn’t give up when it’s licked. It stays up to date. And it finds no job too small. We weren’t all born with equal talents; some of us are more gifted in certain areas than others. But every one of us was born with an equal responsibility to utilise his...More

Tuesday, February 7, 2023

Faithfulness (3)

‘Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much.’ Luke 16:10 NIV

Pastor James Merritt said, ‘The other day, I asked my beautiful wife if she married me for my looks.’ She replied, ‘No, I married you for your brains – it’s the little things that count!’ Merritt was joking, of course. What really counts in life is faithfulness in little things; it’s how dependability begins, grows, and matures. Longfellow wrote, ‘Most people would succeed in small things if they weren’t troubled with great ambition.’ Sometimes we think we’re too big for small things; we would rather...More

Monday, February 6, 2023

Faithfulness (2)

‘It is required that those who have been given a trust must prove faithful.’ 1 Corinthians 4:2 NIV

Faithfulness requires making 100 per cent of your effort 100 per cent of the time. The magazine Insight once published an article by Gary Sheer called Strive for Perfection…or Else! It contained some alarming facts! The article said if 99.9 per cent was good enough, 103,260 income tax returns would be processed incorrectly that year, 22,000 cheques would be deducted from the wrong bank accounts within the next sixty minutes, 12 babies would be given to the wrong parents each day, two plane landings daily at...More

Sunday, February 5, 2023

Faithfulness (1)

‘Many claim to have unfailing love, but a faithful person who can find?’ Proverbs 20:6 NIV

A new employee once asked a co-worker, ‘How long have you been working for the company?’ He replied, ‘Ever since the boss threatened to fire me!’ Seriously, employers scramble to find workers who are faithful and dependable. Citizens long for politicians who faithfully carry out their campaign promises. In the marriage ceremony, newlyweds are asked to be faithful to the vows they make to each other. The truth is, without faithfulness, your influence will be restricted or wiped out. Without faithfulness, the total...More

Saturday, February 4, 2023

God is your provider

‘You prepare a table before me.’ Psalm 23:5 NKJV

Next time you sit down at your table to eat a delicious meal, stop and think about all the people it took to make it possible. A farmer grew it or raised it; a food processing company prepared and packaged it; a transport company shipped it; a grocery store sold it; then someone paid the price to buy it, cook it, and set it before you to eat. There are many links in this chain, but the first link is God. He made the soil, the seeds, and the livestock. Without Him, you would go hungry. That’s why it’s proper to say grace or offer thanks to Him each time you...More

Friday, February 3, 2023

Are you growing spiritually?

‘Growing in every way more and more like Christ...’ Ephesians 4:15 NLT

Spiritual growth doesn’t happen automatically. You must desire to grow, decide to grow, discipline yourself, and delight in spiritual growth. ‘But my life is just too hard,’ you say. A lot of people have had it worse than you and grown into spiritual maturity, and a lot of folks have had it better and remained stuck in spiritual infancy. That’s because they doubted their ability to grow, drifted wherever the current took them, or delayed their growth, thinking, ‘I’ll get around to it when things change’. But it never happens....More

Thursday, February 2, 2023

You represent your Father.

‘His father saw him and had compassion...’ Luke 15:20 NKJV

When the father saw his prodigal son, he had compassion. Pastor Jack Graham writes: ‘This isn’t a father who can’t wait to punish his sinful son, who has written him off as wasted and worthless. This is a loving, caring father who can’t wait to embrace and welcome him. He runs down the road to meet him. What you see is a picture of the Father’s love for you; eager, excessive, approachable and abundant.’ Max Lucado adds: ‘The tale involves a wealthy father and a wilful son who takes his inheritance to Las Vegas and wastes it on...More

Wednesday, February 1, 2023

Scriptural coping skills

‘Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing. In every thing give thanks...’ 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 KJV

In order to succeed in life, you need good coping skills. The salesperson has a quota. The performer has rehearsals. The therapist counsels one depressed soul after another. The pilot has to sit in the cockpit for hours. The preacher is never free of sermon preparation. Then there is the parent with tiny children facing fourteen hours a day of making decisions, competing with strong wills, and trying to be everything to everybody. How do you develop the coping skills required to live the abundant life Jesus...More

Tuesday, January 31, 2023

Peace will guard your mind.

‘The peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds.’
Philippians 4:7 NKJV

Wise people never make important decisions when they are in a tense emotional state. When Elijah
found out that Queen Jezebel was after him, he was ready to give up his role as a prophet and
die. So, God gave him forty days of rest, prayer, and recovery, before he decided what his next
steps would be. He was now ready to decide on the basis of his faith in God, and not his fear of
Jezebel. And his decision was very different at the end of forty days of rest than it would...More

Monday, January 30, 2023

Telling it like it is

‘Speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ.’ Ephesians 4:15 NLT

It’s difficult to confront a friend when there is a problem. It’s easier to stay superficial, to demonise one another when you don’t agree, or to cut ties with someone at the first sign of trouble. But the Bible says, ‘One who gives a right answer kisses the lips.’ (Proverbs 24:26 NASB) Transparency deepens relationships and keeps our fellowship open and authentic, freeing us to speak the truth in love. No more lies or pretence. Tell your brother the truth. Remember, ‘Therefore, putting away lying, “Let...More

Sunday, January 29, 2023

What concerns you concerns God

‘Give all your worries and cares to God.’ 1 Peter 5:7 NLT

A trucker who always took his dog on his road trips had stopped for a break and was throwing a ball around when something caught the dog’s eye, and he shot into the bush. When the dog didn’t return, the trucker searched frantically, without success. He alerted other truckers at the truck stop, and they searched until dark. They eventually left and told the trucker they would pray for him. The trucker doubted God was listening or particularly concerned about his dog, as he had been praying and searching for hours to no avail.

He posted...More

Saturday, January 28, 2023

Start your day with God

‘My voice You shall hear in the morning, O Lord.’ Psalm 5:3 NKJV

Develop the habit of starting each day with God. When you do, you will have a source of strength to draw on all day long. Psychologists say it takes up to three weeks to become familiar with a new habit, and another three before it takes root. That means you need to get beyond the six-week barrier. So, do these:

(1) Make a strong resolution. If you begin half-heartedly, you will never succeed. The Bible says, ‘Encourage one another daily.’ (Hebrews 3:13 NIV) If it helps, become accountable to someone. Ask them to encourage you and...More

Friday, January 27, 2023

The blessed hope

‘Looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Saviour Jesus Christ.’ Titus 2:13 NKJV

Trusting in Christ’s soon return and our ultimate victory is what will sustain us in these days of disillusionment with some of our national leaders, the devaluing of our money, and the devastation of wars being fought on various continents at the same time. And don’t let some television talk-show host play on your fears in order to promote his or her ratings.

Jesus said, ‘Therefore be on the alert, for you do not know which day your Lord is coming.’ (Matthew 24:42 NASB) Admiral...More

Thursday, January 26, 2023

Help for your marriage

‘He who answers a matter before he hears it, it is folly and shame to him.’ Proverbs 18:13 NKJV

Author Jean Kerr quipped: ‘Marrying a man is like buying something you've been admiring for a long time in a shop window. You may love it when you get it home, but it doesn't always go with everything in the house.’

The Bible gives good marital advice: ‘Now may the God who gives endurance and encouragement grant you to live in harmony with one another, according to Christ Jesus.’ (Romans 15:5 HCSB) That means doing these three things:

(1) Keep an open mind. The Bible says, ‘He who...More

Wednesday, January 25, 2023

Advice on dating

‘Can two walk together, unless they are agreed?’ Amos 3:3 NKJV

There is no definitive test that can predict how a date will ultimately work out, but here are five questions you should always ask yourself:

(1) What’s my first impression of this person? For example, who do they hang out with? What kind of events do they enjoy? Do they lie? Steal? Swear? Do drugs? This kind of information can save you untold heartache down the road. And, not to judge a book by its cover, until you really get to know somebody, what else can you go by?

(2) How well do I know them? Isn’t it wiser to date...More

Tuesday, January 24, 2023

Connecting begins with caring

‘May the Lord make your love increase and overflow.’ 1 Thessalonians 3:12 NIV

One of America’s most successful telephone companies created a TV advert using the slogan, ‘Can you hear me now?’ It shows a man talking on the phone, but the person on the other end can’t hear him. So, he repeatedly asks, ‘Can you hear me now?’ The ad was designed to convey the message that this particular phone company delivers a high-quality signal and doesn’t drop calls. When your phone drops a call, you know it. And what’s your immediate reaction? Annoyance? Frustration? Anger?

In his book, Everyone...More

Monday, January 23, 2023

Handling change at work

‘To everything there is a season.’ Ecclesiastes 3:1 NKJV

When change happens in the workplace, we often feel threatened. We get used to the personalities of our co-workers and bosses, and we want them to remain in place, stay the same, and require nothing more from us than what we have given in the past. We fail to prepare for instability, uncertainty, and surprises because of our desire for stability, security, and predictability. How ironic! If we were willing to adjust our expectations and be more realistic, we wouldn’t be so traumatised when change comes. Things can change overnight. It may be the loss...More

Sunday, January 22, 2023


‘Jesus was...tempted by the devil.’ Matthew 4:1 NIV

The Bible says, ‘Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.’ Notice who led Jesus there: God! You’re in training for your destiny, and a good trainer has one thing in mind—turning flab into muscle. So he takes you into the gym and increases the weights until you break a sweat and start thinking, ‘I don’t know how much more of this I can take.’ But God does. It’s only when you look back that you realise you’re handling situations today you couldn’t have handled a year ago. Sometimes old temptations will...More

Saturday, January 21, 2023

In training for better things

‘And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God.’ Romans 8:28 NKJV

When Joseph was thrown into prison, it was hard for him to see how this road would lead to the fulfilment of his dream, but it did. That’s because God had a plan for his life. And He has one for yours too! Your current job may just be preparation for the job God really has in mind for you. Perhaps not today or tomorrow, but, if you stay faithful, there will come a time when you look back and realise how God directed your steps (see Psalm 37:23). Refuse to embrace any concept of victimhood that would steal your...More

Friday, January 20, 2023

Forming healthy relationships

‘He heals the broken-hearted and binds up their wounds.’ Psalm 147:3 NASB

If you’re recovering from a bad relationship, it’s a mistake to rush into another one. Unhealthy people make unhealthy choices. Some wounds take longer to heal than others, but you can count on this promise: ‘He heals the broken-hearted and binds up their wounds.’ All God asks is that you give Him a chance. Start by taking time to search His Word to find out how He feels about you. His opinion is the only reliable foundation on which to build your self-worth. If a perfect God with full knowledge of your struggles and shortcomings...More

Thursday, January 19, 2023

Blending two families

‘Live in peace.’ 2 Corinthians 13:11 NKJV

The Brady Bunch was a popular television show where a mum and dad with six kids created one big happy family without conflict or rivalries. The problem is it seldom happens that way. So here are three challenges you will need God’s help with:

(1) It’s common for kids to see a new step-parent as a usurper. Their loyalty to the memory of their departed mother or father can be intense. For them to welcome a newcomer feels like an act of betrayal. This can place the step-parent in a real bind.

(2) It’s common for one child to move into the power...More

Wednesday, January 18, 2023

Handling temptation Christ’s way (2)

‘After the devil had finished every temptation, he departed from Him for a time.’ Luke 4:13 HCSB

Observe this:

(1) Temptation comes when you’re alone without support. Just as a wolf looks for the sheep that wanders from the safety of the fold, the Enemy rejoices when you neglect Christian fellowship and cut yourself off from other believers. You may think the Lord is always with you, but that doesn’t mean the devil won’t tempt you. The Bible teaches us how to overcome temptation: ‘A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even...More

Tuesday, January 17, 2023

Handling temptation Christ’s way (1)

‘For forty days He was tempted by the devil.’ Luke 4:2 NIV

Here are some practical pointers from Jesus for handling temptation:

(1) Your temptations are like the ones He faced. ‘For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathise with our weaknesses, but one who has been tempted in every way as we are, yet without sin.’ (Hebrews 4:15 HCSB) You say, ‘But you don’t understand how bad my temptations are.’ No, but Jesus does. The fact that He was tempted in every way, means He has been there, felt the urge, and understands your vulnerability first-hand. You can turn to Him when...More

Monday, January 16, 2023

Beware of an elitist attitude (3)

‘Humble yourselves under the mighty power of God and at the right time He will lift you up in honour.’ 1 Peter 5:6 NLT

Have you ever looked down on someone because they didn’t share or possess the advantages that you enjoy in life? Do you feel superior to others in any aspect of your life? Do you believe that being part of a particular denomination puts you in a special class? Maybe your well-toned physique makes you feel superior to the overweight multitudes. And what if you are renowned in your community? Do you think you should always be escorted to front-row seats at public meetings? If so, it’s time...More

Sunday, January 15, 2023

Beware of an elitist attitude (2)

‘It was not I but God who was working through me by His grace.’ 1 Corinthians 15:10 NLT

Anytime you think less of someone because they’re not a member of your race, denomination, gender, or social group, you’re displaying an elitist attitude. Elitism is rooted in pride, and ‘God opposes the proud but shows favour to the humble.’ (James 4:6 NIV) Here are two Bible examples of the elitist they are not one of us attitude:

(1) When God poured out His Spirit upon the seventy elders who led Israel, they all prophesied. Two of them were not present when it happened. Later, Joshua saw them...More

Saturday, January 14, 2023

Beware of having an elitist attitude (1)

‘Don’t think you are better than you really are.’ Romans 12:3 NLT

Paul writes: ‘Don’t think you are better than you really are. Be honest in your evaluation of yourselves, measuring yourselves by the faith God has given us. Just as our bodies have many parts and each part has a special function, so it is with Christ’s body. We are many parts of one body, and we all belong to each other. In His grace, God has given us different gifts for doing certain things well.’ (Romans 12:3–6 NLT) Paul is teaching us this important principle: ‘Don’t have an elitist attitude.’

If you are an...More

Friday, January 13, 2023

Don’t be self-righteous

‘Do not think of yourself more highly than you should.’ Romans 12:3 GNT

Jesus told this story: ‘Two men went to the Temple to pray. One was a Pharisee, and the other was a despised tax collector. The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed this prayer: “I thank you, God, that I am not like other people—cheaters, sinners, adulterers. I’m certainly not like that tax collector! I fast twice a week, and I give you a tenth of my income.” But the tax collector stood at a distance and dared not even lift his eyes to Heaven as he prayed. Instead, he beat his chest in sorrow, saying, “O God, be merciful to me,...More

Thursday, January 12, 2023

Meditate—percolate (5)..

‘The statutes of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart.’ Psalm 19:8 NKJV

‘The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul; the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple; the statutes of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart; the commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes.’ (Psalm 19:7–8 NKJV)

‘More to be desired are they than gold… sweeter also than honey… by them Your servant is warned, and in keeping them there is great reward. Who can understand his errors? Cleanse me from secret faults. Keep back Your servant also from presumptuous sins; let them not...More

Wednesday, January 11, 2023

Meditate—percolate (4)

‘Oh, how I love Your law! It is my meditation all the day.’ Psalm 119:97 NKJV

Bible meditation is different from meditation as we know it in our society. Meditation, as popularly taught by the Eastern philosophies, tells you to empty your mind. That’s the exact opposite of what the Scriptures say! Bible meditation means filling your mind with the truth God has revealed. David was a king. Imagine the pressures and problems, demands and decisions he faced each day. Yet he said, ‘Oh, how I love Your law! It is my meditation all the day.’

Have you observed that we waste so much time doing mundane things...More

Tuesday, January 10, 2023

Meditate—percolate (3)

‘You shall meditate on it day and night.’ Joshua 1:8 NASB

Bible meditation has fallen out of favour. Why? Because we live in an instantaneous society, and a preoccupied society. We have so much stuff coming at us from TV, mobile phones, email, texts, snail mail, satellite links, cable news feeds, and podcasts that we hardly have a moment to react—much less reflect.

Get real! You can’t download spiritual maturity by hitting a few keys on a computer. That’s why the Scriptures speak so often about meditation. God, the author of the Bible, gave Joshua the formula for succeeding in your career and...More

Monday, January 9, 2023

Meditate—percolate (2)

‘I meditate on Your precepts and consider Your ways.’ Psalm 119:15 NIV

Let’s take this meditate-percolate idea a step further. (If you’re a tea drinker, substitute the word brew.) Maybe this will help you ease into meditation instead of feeling overwhelmed by the thought that you don’t have the time or discipline to do it. This is not an all-or-nothing challenge. Take small steps. If you have only ten minutes, maximise each one of them. You don’t have to read ten chapters of your Bible. You’re not doing a book report for school, and you’re not going to be graded on a test.

God’s Word...More

Sunday, January 8, 2023

Meditate—percolate (1)

‘Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly.’ Colossians 3:16 NKJV

Meditating in Scripture is one of the great keys to spiritual growth. In the first psalm, David writes, ‘In His law he meditates day and night.’ (Psalm 1:2 NKJV) But the word meditation is not one that a text-and-Twitter generation relates to very well. We imagine sober-faced monks wearing hairshirts and chanting on bended knees as the sun rises every morning. As a result, we want to run in the opposite direction. We admire such people, think God has to call us to such a thing, and conclude that He certainly hasn’t called us to do it. Or...More

Saturday, January 7, 2023

Are you critical of others?

‘We have done foolishly and have sinned.’ Numbers 12:11 ESV

If you think criticising others is just exercising your right to free speech and it’s no big deal, stop and consider these three things:

(1) God saw it as a sin when Aaron and Miriam criticised Moses for marrying an Ethiopian woman. He smote Miriam with leprosy, and Aaron was quick to repent, admitting they had sinned and acted foolishly. God healed Miriam, but not before she had been publicly embarrassed.

(2) A critical attitude will hurt you relationally. ‘Then the Lord said to Moses, “…Let her be shut out of the camp...More

Friday, January 6, 2023

Learn to manage your emotions

‘He comforted them and spoke kindly to them.’ Genesis 50:21 ESV

If you have read the story of Joseph, you realise he had every reason to be angry, bitter and vindictive for the despicable way his brothers treated him. But what does he do? He doesn’t get enraged. He doesn’t even get even. He helps Egypt, the land that enslaved and falsely imprisoned him, to survive famine. He feeds his family when they come begging for food. He forgives, and in doing so, he is freed from his negative emotions. He resolves past issues, does not allow them to deter his destiny, and stays in God's favour.


Thursday, January 5, 2023

This year think ‘possible’ (3)

‘Then he had another dream.’ Genesis 37:9 NIV

Joseph had two dreams. The second was bigger than the first. His first dream was a field of sheaves; the second dream was a sky full of stars. So, the word for today is—dream one size bigger! Henry Curtis said: ‘Make your plans as fantastic as you like because twenty-five years from now, they will seem mediocre. Make your plans ten times as great as you first planned, and twenty-five years from now, you will wonder why you did not make them fifty times as great.’

There is only one way to keep growing: make your goal a step beyond what makes you...More

Wednesday, January 4, 2023

This year think ‘possible’ (2)

‘Without faith it is impossible to please Him.’ Hebrews 11:6 NKJV

The Bible says, ‘But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.’ (Hebrews 11:6 NKJV) Here is something God can’t do: be pleased without faith!

Twelve spies entered the promised land, but only two came back and said, ‘We are well able to overcome it.’ (Numbers 13:30 NKJV) God had promised it to them, but the majority thought it couldn’t be done. People who think possible not only create forward-looking, optimistic...More

Tuesday, January 3, 2023

This year think ‘possible’ (1)

‘With God all things are possible.’ Matthew 19:26 KJV

Read these two Scriptures: ‘With God all things are possible.’ (Matthew1 9:26 KJV) ‘Now He did not do many mighty works there because of their unbelief.’ (Matthew 13:58 NKJV) Those two verses mean this: many things that are possible remain undone because of doubt and unbelief. So, this year, think possible. If God’s Word says you can succeed, but you’re failing, it may mean that you don’t really believe what He says, or you’re not willing to do your part. When you think ‘possible’, it increases your energy level. Who gets energised at...More

Monday, January 2, 2023

Enjoy each day of this New Year (2)

‘I have told you these things, that My joy and delight may be in you.’ John 15:11 AMPC

You need to enjoy each day of your life for Christ’s sake because He paid a very high price for you to be able to.

Jesus said, ‘I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.’ (John 10:10 NKJV)

Jesus said: ‘These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full.’(John 15:11 NKJV)

He said, ‘Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full.’ (John 16:24 NKJV) Jesus actually prayed that you would have...More

Sunday, January 1, 2023

Enjoy each day of this New Year (1)

‘Let’s celebrate and be glad today.’ Psalm 118:24 CEV

Each day is a gift from God. Apart from your salvation, today is the most valuable gift you will ever receive. When you receive a gift, what do you do? Thank the giver, unwrap it, and enjoy it. Getting the idea? Make an effort to focus on and enjoy every moment of your life. If you tend to be a planner, take care that you don’t start planning the next project while you’re still doing the current project. Otherwise, it will steal the present moment from you.

Although being focused is good, it’s easy to get so focused on your work that you...More

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