Grace Moments Devotions – February 5, 2021

February 5
What most married people forget
Pastor Mike Novotny

Do you know the difference between most dating couples and many married people? In a word—effort. When we date someone, we usually put in the effort. We shave our faces and our legs. We find the most flattering outfit and spritz some extra cologne on our necks. But give it a few years and a couple of kids, and a husband or wife might not even put in the effort to close the door before using the bathroom!

It’s good for couples to remember the power of effort, which is what led them to the altar in the first place. This is the law of the harvest that Paul mentions to the Galatians: “A man reaps what he sows” (6:7). It’s true in marriage and also true with God. Live for yourself and you will reap an eternity without God. Live for God, in repentance and faith, and you will reap eternal life thanks to the sacrifice of Jesus.

Which is one more reason why I love Jesus. Because Jesus always put in the effort. In his desire to unite you to God, he never took a day off. He never kicked up his feet, lived for himself, and gave into sin. Instead, his life was one of constant trying, ceaseless seeking, perfect love. Meditate for two minutes what that meant practically for Jesus. With every thought, every conversation, every person, and every choice, Jesus was sowing seeds that would grow into something beautiful—your perfect relationship with the Father.

Learn to seek GOD every day!

The Seeking GOD Every Day devotional helps you grow stronger in your walk with Jesus as you set out on a 365-day journey through God’s Word. Develop a fearless faith and focus more intently on God’s amazing plans for you!

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Peace – Homeword – February 5

Peace

This devotional was written by Jim Liebelt

I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world. —John 16:33

There once was a King who offered a prize to the artist who would create a painting that best demonstrated peace. Many artists tried. The King looked at all the paintings, but there were only two he really liked and he had to choose between them.

One painting was of a beautiful and calm lake scene. The lake was a mirror reflecting the towering snowcapped mountains all around it. Overhead was a blue sky with fluffy white clouds. Most who saw this painting thought that it was the perfect picture of peace.

The other painting had mountains too. But, these were rugged and bare. Above was an angry sky from which rain fell and lightning danced. Down the side of one mountain, tumbled a turbulent waterfall. When the King looked, he saw that behind the waterfall grew a tiny bush from a crack in the rock. Within the bush a bird had built a nest.

There, in the midst of the rush of angry water, sat the mother bird in her nest. The King chose this picture as the one best demonstrating peace.

People grumbled at the King’s choice. The king responded to the people saying that he chose the second picture because peace did not mean being in a place where there is no noise, trouble or hard work.  The King explained that true peace meant to be in the midst of all those things and yet still be calm in heart.

We live in a fast-paced world full of turmoil. Perhaps even now you are experiencing significant challenges that threaten to knock your world off balance and threaten to rob you of peace. Still, as the story points out, the absence of turmoil isn’t the real meaning of peace. Like the King in the story, our King, Jesus, knows the meaning of peace. He hasn’t chosen to take us out of this world, or to remove all of the sources of trouble, but rather to protect us and offer us the peace that only He can give.

Is your world feeling disrupted? Are you looking for peace? Turn to Jesus, who will be your shelter in times of storm.

GOING DEEPER:

1. When you think of your life, which painting from the story seems the more realistic picture of what peace can look like?

2. What current situations do you need to seek God’s peace in your life?

FURTHER READING:

John 14:27John 17:15Philippians 4:6-7 

For more information and resources please visit HomeWord.com.

Daily in Christ 2/5

February 5HOW WE PERCEIVE OURSELVES Romans 8:16, 17The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ Lydia is a middle-aged woman who was dealt a bad hand in life right from the beginning. Memories of ritual and sexual abuse that she suffered as a young child have haunted her continually throughout her Christian life. When she came to see me, her damaged self-image seemed beyond repair. As she told me her story, Lydia displayed little emotion, but her words reflected total despair. When she concluded, I asked, “Who are you, Lydia? How do you perceive yourself?” “I’m evil,” she answered stoically. “I’m just no good for anybody. People tell me I’m evil and all I do is bring trouble.” “You’re not evil,” I argued. “How can a child of God be evil? Is that how you perceive yourself?” Lydia nodded. It is never pleasant to see the evil one express his ugly personality through a victim like Lydia. But realizing that she is primarily the product of the work of Christ on the cross instead of the victim of her past, she was able to throw off the chains of spiritual bondage and begin living according to her true identity as a child of God. Nothing is more foundational to your freedom from Satan’s bondage than understanding and affirming what God has done for you in Christ and who you are as a result. We all live in accordance with our perceived identity. In fact, we cannot consistently behave in a way that is inconsistent with how we perceive ourselves. Your attitudes, actions, responses and reactions to life’s circumstances are often determined by your conscious and subconscious self-perception. If you see yourself as the helpless victim of Satan and his schemes, you will live like his victim and be in bondage to his lies. But if you see yourself as the dearly loved and accepted child of God that you really are, you will more likely live like a child of God. Prayer: Thank You, Jesus, that You have made me more than a conqueror. Because of Your love and power, I can live as a victor instead of a victim today.

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Because Jesus Lives

Righteousness is a by-grace-through-faith reality

BG hear

Hear


Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God (Romans 5:1, 2).

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Believe


Abraham and Sarah had waited their entire married life for a child. Even after God promised them a son, they waited for many years. Then Isaac was born. Here was the promised one. Here was the one through whom God would bless the world.

Then God asked Abraham to sacrifice Isaac. “What! I’m supposed to kill the child of promise?”

Hebrews tells us Abraham believed God could and would raise Isaac from the dead. In effect, Abraham did receive Isaac back from the dead, because when God stopped him from killing Isaac he stopped a man fully committed to follow through on his decision to kill his own son.

Abraham believed God, and so was credited righteousness. Why credited? Because righteousness is God’s to give, not ours to earn. The same righteousness credited to Abraham is credited to us, not because we deserve it, but because we accept it.

Do you see why righteousness is a by-grace-through-faith reality, rather than a behavioral exercise?

“[Jesus] was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification” (Romans 4:25).

We receive both of these when we, like Abraham, “believe in him who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead” (Romans 4:24).

Abraham could not earn God’s blessing by his own behavior. Look at his failures – Hagar, two different kings with Sarah – when he tried to “help” God’s plan. But he did receive God’s blessing when he took God at his word. Note those two words, “earn” and “receive”.

We simply cannot earn God’s blessing, but we can, by faith, receive the gift offered. Jesus’ resurrection guarantees it.

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Live


Because Jesus lives, you also live. Because his is an eternal life, so is yours! Accept by faith the gift of life offered because of Jesus. Trust him to complete the work he has begun in you.

In Him,

bob.jpg

Bob Christopher

For more information, please visit Basic Gospel at BasicGospel.net