Growing in Communion with God YouVersion Devotional

It’s easy to praise God when something great happens to us or our family. However, I know how hard it can be to praise God in the midst of the struggle. As I’ve learned through many difficult moments, I always have a reason to praise God. I can always recall a blessing that will push me into a moment of praise. Whatever you may be walking through today, you have something to praise God for. You can find a way to praise God in your valleys.

I know in these dark valleys it is often difficult to even pray at all. This is one of the reasons I am convinced God wants us to be a part of a local community of believers (church) so that others can help us pray when we cannot. But, if you can’t pray, try praise. “Lord I thank You that just a little while ago I was there, but now I’m here. God, I was broken but now I’m restored and I thank you for that.” Just a simple expression of gratitude opens up to us a line of interaction with God. And so I praise Him for what He’s done for me. And you praise Him for what He’s done for you. And if for some reason you simply cannot find a way to praise, then just tell God that very fact. Even speaking your frustrations to God is still prayer.

Another concept to consider as we pray is to praise Him for what He’s done for us, as the people of God. Don’t just rejoice when God does something for you individually, but praise Him for what He has done for others, as well! Enter into a time of praise for God’s provision for your church family, your friends, and your community. Often the current Christian culture reduces Christianity to an individualist enterprise. However, serving Christ is not just an individual work. Christ uses others to mold us into His image. We need one another in order to fulfill God’s will and we need one another to grow. When I praise God for what He has done, and is doing, for others and not just for me, I am acknowledging that I am a part of God’s plan for the world. 

Praying for Peace YouVersion Devotional

DAY THREE: Bloom Where You’ve Planted  

Notice what God says in the first verse.

Do you see it? God is talking to His people about their captivity (displacement), and He says “whom I have caused to be carried away.” In plain language nothing comes our way that God hasn’t allowed for a specific reason. When you are a child of God, nothing, and I do mean nothing, can touch you without going through God first!

No matter what fiery trial, troubling situation, or displacement that you face, you are not in the hands of the devil—you never will be. You are in the hands of God.

There can be many reasons that the Lord has allowed you to go through the difficulty that you are facing right now. He can be getting your attention, drawing you away from a particular sin, seeking your growth, causing things to fall in place in order to bless you and others, and the list can go on. No matter what dark valley we walk through, God uses it to teach us to trust Him.

Instead of striving to get out of our situation, or murmuring about our misery, God wants us to lean on Him and trust Him.

God’s people were living in Babylon—a wicked and idolatrous society. Yet the Lord told His children to keep on living— “Work, have a family, and walk with Me in your difficult circumstances.” No matter what your situation is or where you end up, the word of the Lord is: “Where I have allowed you to go, bloom there. Dig down deep where you are, and see what I am going to do in and through you!”

This is so important to understand. No matter how horrible our circumstances are, we can enjoy the peace of God. How? By trusting God’s character—that He is good.

Praying for Peace You Version Devotional

DAY TWO: Peace When the World is Turned Upside Down  

You can be going right along with your daily activities, and then in an instant everything in your life can change. Your husband comes home from work and says he wants a divorce. Or you wake up to get ready for work, but once there, you find out you no longer have a job, and like that, your world falls apart.

Can we have peace in our hearts when our world is turned upside down?

The kind of peace that the world gives is conditional—it stands on a shaky foundation that can change with every passing whim. Some people find peace and security in money, until they lose their job or the stock market crashes. Other people find peace in relationships or in their marriage, until they fail. The kind of peace that Jesus promises is based on the foundation of God Himself—unchanging, loving, gracious, merciful, and faithful. God’s peace thrives in the midst of our trials, tribulations, and dark valleys.

The peace that Jesus gives you and me is drawn from the very heart of God. It’s a peace that reminds us in the deepest of our trials that He is faithful, He keeps His promises; it assures us that we are His and that nothing—no person, no demon, no fear, no enemy—can take us out of God’s hand; and it comforts us with the truth that we are secure in Him.

When our lives change—when we find ourselves in the midst of difficult storms—we witness the power of God like we have never seen before. When the children of Israel stood at the banks of an incredible and impassable sea with an army bent on destroying them in hot pursuit, they witnessed the power of God to do the impossible. 

Praying for Peace

DAY ONE: It Is Well  

Are you in a dark place today? Are you praying for God’s peace to fill your heart and mind?

You may be thinking, “Yeah, but you don’t know the trials I am facing right now.” And you would be right, I don’t. But God does. And His promise of peace in the midst of your circumstance is exactly what He can and will give to you.

In 1873 a successful businessman lost all his material possessions in the great Chicago fire. This did not trouble him too much, for he had set his affection on “things above.” However, just a few weeks later, when his wife and children were on board the Ville du Havre en route to France, their ship was rammed by an English vessel and sank within two hours, claiming the lives of 226 people. Although his wife survived, all four of their children perished in the icy waters.

The man was given the tragic news and later shown the spot in the mid-Atlantic where the shipwreck occurred. Although heartsick with grief, Mr. Spafford suddenly felt an inrush of supernatural peace and comfort as he looked to the Lord for strength. With tears streaming down his face, he picked up a pen to record his feelings, and from his well-blest heart flowed these thrilling words:

When peace like a river attendeth my way,

when sorrows like sea billows roll;

whatever my lot, Thou hast taught me to say,

“It is well, it is well with my soul.” 

Matthew 25. King James Version (Commentary and Insight) Timothy Baugh. (NOT MEANT AS INTERPRETATION!) https://thesurrenderedone.wordpress.com

  1. Then shall the kingdom (represented by the “Gospel Message” preached by Jesus the Messiah/Christ) of heaven (the abode of God’s Presence of Divine Light) be likened unto ten virgins, (which can represent ‘ten’ “senses”. Our “five” physical senses, and our “five” ‘spiritual’ senses) which took their lamps (which project light vibrations) to meet the bridegroom. (Jesus Christ, the Lord, from the Divine Light who proclaimed this “Good News”.) 2. And five of them were wise (because they were sending out “spiritual vibrations” of  TRUE FAITH and upliftment of others for their soul in love of their ongoing development) and five were foolish. (drawn towards the physical senses only for all evidence of Life). 3. They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil (desires of purity from the Holy Spirit) with them: 4. But the wise (that had strength of character) took (investigated their physical senses for their guidance and direction from God by making the effort in using their will for their soul, and were determined with all their hearts, to be filled with His purity by overcoming their bodily desires to safeguard their souls. To have the “light for their souls” they kept praying).  5. While the bridegroom (the Lord Jesus Christ) tarried, they (all the senses) all slumbered and slept. (gave into their desires, relying on their own wills and love of physical sensation, and its fulfillment.) 6. And at midnight (when tribulation comes before the Lord’s Presence) there was a cry (like a prayer) made, Behold, (LOOK or PAY ATTENTION!) the bridegroom cometh; (JESUS WILL COME AGAIN!) go ye out to meet him. (pray at that very moment to get the light from Him for their lamps or souls for purity). 7. Then all those virgins (those who were pure and ready) AROSE, and trimmed (became aware/conscious and surrendered with all of their beings in repentance) their lamps. 8. And the foolish said to the wise, (those holding on to flesh desires said to those who had overcome their desires) Give us of your oil; for our lamps are gone out. 9. But the wise answered, saying, NOT SO; (or NO WAY!) lest there be NOT ENOUGH for us and you: (The “Physical” senses will not comprehend the things of the Spirit of God). 10. And while they came to buy, (laboring in trying to live for this Life Alone) the bridegroom “CAME”; AND THEY THAT WERE READY WENT IN WITH HIM TO THE MARRIAGE: AND THE DOOR WAS SHUT. 11. Afterwards came ALSO the other virgins, (senses) saying, Lord, Lord, open to us. (Why is it that the “Physical” cannot receive the “Spiritual”?) 12. But HE ANSWERED AND SAID, Verily (most honestly and truthfully) I say unto you, I KNOW YOU NOT. (Such is not recognized in Heaven). 13. WATCH therefore, for you know neither the day or the hour wherein the Son of Man (Jesus) cometh.”

Do You Want Me?

new dev 4 couples

by Park York

I rise early on this Friday, as I do every day, to prepare coffee and mix a protein shake. The television news plays quietly in the corner. Flossie, my wife, is still asleep.

Sometime after eight, she begins floating out of slumber. I bring the shake to her bedside, put the straw in her mouth, and give her cheek a little pat as she begins to drink. Slowly the liquid recedes.

I sit there holding the glass, thinking about the past eight years. At first, she asked only an occasional incoherent or irrelevant question; otherwise she was normal. I tried for two years to find out what was wrong. She grew agitated, restless, defensive; she was constantly tired and unable to hold a conversation.

At last, a neurologist diagnosed Alzheimer’s disease. He said he wasn’t sure—a firm diagnosis could come only from examining brain tissue after death. There is no known cause for this malady. And no known cure.

I enrolled Flossie in a day care center for adults. But she kept wandering off the property. We medicated her to keep her calm. Perhaps from receiving too much of one drug, she suffered a violent seizure that left her immeasurably worse: lethargic, incontinent, and unable to speak clearly or care for herself. My anguish gradually became resignation. I gave up all plans of retirement travel, recreation, visits to see grandchildren—the golden era older people dream about.

The years have passed, and my days have become routine, demanding, lonely, seemingly without accomplishment to measure. Flossie has gradually dropped in strength and weight, from 125 pounds to 86. I take some time to work with a support group and to attend church, but the daily needs keep me feeding, bathing, diapering, changing beds, cleaning house, fixing meals, dressing and undressing her, and doing whatever else a nurse and homemaker does, morning to night.

Occasionally, a word bubbles up from the muddled processes of Flossie’s diseased brain. Sometimes relevant, sometimes the name of a family member, or the name of an object. Just a single word.

On this Friday morning, after she finishes her shake, I give her some apple juice, then massage her arms and caress her forehead and cheeks. Most of the time her eyes are closed, but today she looks up at me, and suddenly her mouth forms four words in a row.

“Do you want me?” Perfect enunciation, softly spoken. I want to jump for joy. “Of course I want you, Flossie!” I say, hugging and kissing her. And so, after months of total silence, she has put together the most sincere question a human being can ask. She speaks, in a way, for people everywhere: those shackled by sin, addiction, hunger, thirst, mental illness, physical pain—frightened, enervated people afraid of the answer, but desperate enough to frame the question anyway.

And, Flossie, I can answer you even more specifically. It may be difficult for you to understand what’s happening. That’s why I’m here, to minister God’s love to you, to bring you wholeness, comfort, and release. Mine are the hands God uses to do His work, just as He uses others’ hands in other places. In spite of our shortcomings, we strive to make people free, well, and happy, blessing them with hope for the future while bringing protein shakes every morning.

Looking ahead…

Unlike so many people today, this gentleman who so gently cared for his wife clearly understood the meaning of commitment. As her mind and body deteriorated with no hope for a cure, he willingly abandoned the hopes and dreams he had worked to achieve. She needed him desperately, and he would be there for her, even though she could give nothing back—not even a rational “thank you.” This, in all its magnificence— and sorrow—is the meaning of love.

No doubt you have dreams of your own for the rest of your married life. Just remember that God may have other plans that depend on your unswerving commitment to each other—no matter what.

– James C Dobson

  • From Night Light For Couples, by Dr. James & Shirley Dobson
    Copyright © 2000 by James Dobson, Inc. All rights reserved.
  • “Do You Want Me?” by Park York. Taken from the June 1989 issue of the Christian Herald. Reprinted by permission of the Christian Herald.

Please a prayer for guidance.

I m waiting on .y friend to feel out paperwork for our new Ministry.

After Altar call, at my Church, Calvary Chapel Fort Lauderdale, we always have new people giving their lives to Jesus. Is about 3 month or less of Learning how to handle all that responsibility properly hand on that we will be able to help the New Believers and help them by directing them to areas where they might want to be. It can be the New Believers class, CR Christian Celebrate CHRIST BASED Recovery or, many other things we offer. I am very happy to volunteer for this Ministry just 2 Saturdays nights a month. I have other things to do and, a Husband.

Please pray for me to be in the Spirit when I speak to anyone not in the flesh. Thank you, love you all in Christ Jesus,

Later,

Pat.

Child of God