He creates, He preserves, He is sufficient to handle our lives

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DAILY DEVOTIONAL – Thursday, October 21, 2021

For more Helpful Inspirational Material:

May you find comfort, encouragement, guidance, hope, inspiration, love, and peace – https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/. May you also find answers to your question(s) through the Scriptures that address every situation you face, and help with your problems.  Deb

Dear Lord, open our hearts and our minds to the power of Your Word, which as we read, we may know, understand, and obey Your Word for us today.  We pray in Jesus’ name.  Amen.  (Author unknown)

Today’s scripture reading:

[He creates, He preserves; He is sufficient to handle our lives]

These scriptures tell of his sovereignty over all creation.  God has supreme, unlimited power over the entire universe.  He creates; he preserves; he governs.  As we understand God’s power, we realize that he is sufficient to handle our lives.  (NLT)

Psalm 104:27-35 – They all depend on you to give them food as they need it.  When you supply it, they gather it.  You open your hand to feed them, and they are richly satisfied.  But if you turn away from them, they panic.  When you take away their breath, they die and turn again to dust.  When you give them your breath, life is created, and you renew the face of the earth.

May the glory of the Lord continue forever!  The Lord takes pleasure in all he has made!  The earth trembles at his glance; the mountains smoke at his touch.

I will sing to the Lord as long as I live.  I will praise my God to my last breath!  May all my thoughts be pleasing to him, for I rejoice in the Lord.  Let all sinners vanish from the face of the earth; let the wicked disappear forever.

Let all that I am praise the Lord.

Praise the Lord!

Quoted verse: Jesus said, “My Father is glorified by this, that you bear much fruit and become my disciples.”  –John 15:8 (NRSV)

“Story” – Jane Rager (Virginia, USA) titled her story “GOD’S GARDEN;” here is a portion of Jane’s story:

“This year my husband and I decided to turn our little-used back deck into a container garden. . .  Each plant is beautiful on its own, but together they display the beauty of God’s handiwork. . .

“As I work in my garden, I think of how God cares for each of us.  God gives us space to grow and provides living water to keep us vibrant, and God nourishes us with scripture and prunes us when necessary so we can grow and be more fruitful.  God knows just what we need.  We each are beautiful in our own way, but together we are truly God’s garden.”

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY – God’s loving care and provision make my life more fruitful.

Prayer: Dear God, thank you for the loving care you provide each and every day.  Help us to grow and bloom as your disciples wherever we are planted.  Amen.

Prayer Focus: GRATITUDE FOR GOD’S CARE

To read the rest of the story in The Upper Room, click on the following link: https://devotional.upperroom.org/

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Live a truly good life by staying close to Him

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DAILY DEVOTIONAL – Wednesday, October 20, 2021

For more Helpful Inspirational Material:

May you find comfort, encouragement, guidance, hope, inspiration, love, and peace – https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/. May you also find answers to your question(s) through the Scriptures that address every situation you face, and help with your problems.  Deb

Dear Lord, open our hearts and our minds to the power of Your Word, which as we read, we may know, understand, and obey Your Word for us today.  We pray in Jesus’ name.  Amen.  (Author unknown)

Today’s scripture reading:

[Live a truly good life by staying close to Him]

Many people try to be good, honest people who do what is right.  But Jesus says that the only way to live a truly good life is to stay close to him, like a branch attached to the vine.  Apart from Christ our efforts are unfruitful.  Are you receiving the nourishment and life offered by Christ, the vine?  If not, you are missing a special gift he has for you.  (NLT)

John 15:1-5 – [Jesus said] “I am the true grapevine, and my Father is the gardener.  He cuts off every branch of mine that doesn’t produce fruit, and he prunes the branches that do bear fruit so they will produce even more.   You have already been pruned and purified by the message I have given you.  Remain in me, and I will remain in you.  For a branch cannot produce fruit if it is severed from the vine, and you cannot be fruitful unless you remain in me.

“Yes, I am the vine, you are the branches.  Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit.  For apart from me you can do nothing. . .”

Quoted verse: Jesus said, “I am the vine; you are the branches.  If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.”  –John 15:5 (NIV)

“Story” – Doug Wingert (Arizona, USA) titled his story “THE TELEPHONE TREE;” here is Doug’s story:

“As I write, many of us around the world are ‘locked down’ because of a pandemic.  Many churches have canceled worship services, Bible studies, Sunday school classes, committee meetings, and mission projects.

“At first, we were dismayed at the thought of closing our church campus.  Our concerns were lessened when some of our members began live streaming our worship services and making recordings that could be viewed at any time.  Our pastors created a telephone tree – a network of people who would contact others on a regular basis to support each other, worship together by phone, share joys and sorrows, and pray together.  Others reached out by email or private messages through social media.  The network spread wider and was transformed into something new.

“When the current health crisis has abated and our church can resume its regular activities, our congregation plans to continue its new ways of ministering to our neighbors, friends, those who are homebound, and others.  Today’s reading reminds us that Jesus is the vine that connects us to one another and to God.  Jesus is with us no matter how we connect.”

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY – There are many ways to connect to God and to one another.

Prayer: Gracious and loving God, thank you for providing us with creative ways to follow you and the reminder that church is not a building but a community of your faithful followers.  In Jesus’ name we pray.  Amen.

Prayer Focus: THOSE FEELING ISOLATED

To read other stories in The Upper Room, click on the following link: https://devotional.upperroom.org/

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His household is not a building, we are members of His household

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DAILY DEVOTIONAL – Tuesday, October 19, 2021

For more Helpful Inspirational Material:

May you find comfort, encouragement, guidance, hope, inspiration, love, and peace – https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/. May you also find answers to your question(s) through the Scriptures that address every situation you face, and help with your problems.  Deb

Dear Lord, open our hearts and our minds to the power of Your Word, which as we read, we may know, understand, and obey Your Word for us today.  We pray in Jesus’ name.  Amen.  (Author unknown)

Today’s scripture reading:

[His household is not a building, we are members of His household]

A church building is sometimes called God’s house in reality, God’s household is not a building but a group of people.  He lives in us and shows himself to a watching world through us.  People can see that God is love and that Christ is Lord as we live in harmony with each other and in accordance with what God says in his Word.  We are citizens of God’s Kingdom and members of his household.  (NLT)

Ephesians 2:11-22 – Don’t forget that you Gentiles used to be outsiders.  You were called “uncircumcised heathens” by the Jews, who were proud of their circumcision, even though it affected only their bodies and not their hearts.  In those days you were living apart from Christ.  You were excluded from citizenship among the people of Israel, and you did not know the covenant promises God had made to them.  You lived in this world without God and without hope.  But now you have been united with Christ Jesus.  Once you were far away from God, but now you have been brought near to him through the blood of Christ.

For Christ himself has brought peace to us.  He united Jews and Gentiles into one people when, in his own body on the cross, he broke down the wall of hostility that separated us.  He did this by ending the system of law with its commandments and regulations.  He made peace between Jews and Gentiles by creating in himself one new people from the two groups.  Together as one body, Christ reconciled both groups to God by means of his death on the cross, and our hostility toward each other was put to death.

He brought this Good News of peace to you Gentiles who were far away from him, and peace to the Jews who were near.  Now all of us can come to the Father through the same Holy Spirit because of what Christ has done for us.

So now you Gentiles are no longer strangers and foreigners.   You are citizens along with all of God’s holy people.  You are members of God’s family.  Together, we are his house, built on the foundation of the apostles and the prophets.   And the cornerstone is Christ Jesus himself.  We are carefully joined together in him, becoming a holy temple for the Lord.  Through him you Gentiles are also being made part of this dwelling where God lives by his Spirit.

Quoted verse: You are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are citizens with the saints and also members of the household of God.  –Ephesians 2:19 (NRSV)

“Story” – Teresa Naidoo (KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa) titled her story “NO LONGER A STRANGER;” here is a portion of Teresa’s story:

“As a bright-eyed new Christian, I believed that everything in my life would suddenly be perfect and every problem would be resolved supernaturally.  No one ever spoke about the process of change that needed to happen – the old ways of thinking that needed to change and the refining that God would do in me.  In church I would look . . . at Christians who had been believers for many years.  I would listen to their experiences of hearing the voice of the Holy Spirit and walking in God’s will for their lives.  I grew discouraged and felt like an outsider . . . 

“Ephesians became my comfort and hope during those challenging times. . .  I clung to Ephesians 2:19, which reminded me that I was no longer a stranger.  I declared over and over that I was a citizen with the saints and a member of the household of God.  And eventually the labels ‘Gentile’ and ‘unbeliever’ no longer defined me; I had become a Christ-follower!”

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY – When I keep my focus on God, all labels fall away.

Prayer: Dear God, thank you for welcoming us as members of your household. In Jesus’ name.  Amen.

To read the rest of the story in The Upper Room, click on the following link: https://devotional.upperroom.org/

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He will guide us with His counsel, by His Word, by His Spirit

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DAILY DEVOTIONAL – Monday, October 18, 2021

For more Helpful Inspirational Material:

May you find comfort, encouragement, guidance, hope, inspiration, love, and peace – https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/. May you also find answers to your question(s) through the Scriptures that address every situation you face, and help with your problems.  Deb

Dear Lord, open our hearts and our minds to the power of Your Word, which as we read, we may know, understand, and obey Your Word for us today.  We pray in Jesus’ name.  Amen.  (Author unknown)

Today’s scripture reading:

[He will guide us with His counsel, by His Word, by His Spirit.]  Today’s title is from the story in The Upper Room, see below.

Psalm 92:1-5 – It is good to give thanks to the Lord, to sing praises to the Most High.  It is good to proclaim your unfailing love in the morning, your faithfulness in the evening, accompanied by a ten-stringed instrument, a harp, and the melody of a lyre.

Quoted verse: The Lord will guide you always.  –Isaiah 58:11 (NIV)

“Story” – Andrea Woronick (Connecticut, USA) titled her story “A CHANGE OF DIRECTION;” here is a portion of Andrea’s story:

“Most of my adult life has been spent in children’s ministry. . .  I found no greater joy than seeing children’s faces light up when they saw how God was working in their lives.

“Then the day came when I couldn’t continue this ministry because of staff changes in our church. . .  I kept turning to God in prayer, asking what I should do – how I could best serve.

“At about the same time, my mother was admitted to a nursing home for those with dementia.  On one of my visits, we gathered for a music program. . .  I had played piano since childhood, and I volunteered to play each week.  It was pure joy for me watching them sing along to songs they remembered from years ago. . .  After Mom died, I contacted some nursing homes nearer to where I live and offered to play music for the residents.

“I never imagined that my gifts would lead me to serve outside of children’s ministry.  But these past few years have shown me that when we ask God for guidance, God leads us to places we may never have ventured.”

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY – I will always find joy on the path God chooses for me.

Prayer: Dear God, help us to let go of preconceived ideas so that we can hear your voice of wisdom for our lives.  Amen.

To read the rest of the story in The Upper Room, click on the following link: https://devotional.upperroom.org/

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We all need His mercy every day

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DAILY DEVOTIONAL – Sunday, October 17, 2021

For more Helpful Inspirational Material:

May you find comfort, encouragement, guidance, hope, inspiration, love, and peace – https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/. May you also find answers to your question(s) through the Scriptures that address every situation you face, and help with your problems.  Deb

Dear Lord, open our hearts and our minds to the power of Your Word, which as we read, we may know, understand, and obey Your Word for us today.  We pray in Jesus’ name.  Amen.  (Author unknown)

Today’s scripture reading:

[We all need His mercy every day]

The Pharisee did not go to the Temple to pray to God but to announce to all within earshot how good he was.  The tax collector went recognizing his sin and begging for mercy.  Self-righteousness is dangerous.  It leads to pride, causes a person to despise others, and prevents him or her from learning anything from God.  The tax collector’s prayer should be our prayer because we all need God’s mercy every day.  Don’t let pride in your achievements cut you off from God.  (NLT)

Luke 18:9-14 – Then Jesus told this story to some who had great confidence in their own righteousness and scorned everyone else.  “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, for I am a sinner.’  I tell you, this sinner, not the Pharisee, returned home justified before God.  For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”

Quoted verse: As the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without deeds is dead.  –James 2:26 (NIV)

“Story” – Cassius Rhue (South Carolina, USA) titled his story “‘SHOW’ VERSUS ‘SURE’;” here is a portion of the story:

“In high school I outweighed my older brother Vincent by more than 35 pounds, worked out more often, and could lift significantly more weight. . .  One afternoon we decided to wrestle in the yard.  Despite my physical size, muscle tone, and confidence, Vincent quickly beat me three times in a row.  After his last victory he proclaimed, ‘That’s the difference between ‘show’ muscles and ‘for-sure’ muscles!’

“Recently I was reminded of my brother’s words while reflecting on a sermon abut genuine faith: there is a faith that is just for show and a faith that is sure.  The sure faith is based on obedience to God’s word.  A sure faith is developed through the disciplines of scripture study, prayer, worship, and service.

“Showy faith may look good; but just like my ‘show’ muscles, it is unable to withstand challenges or win even the smallest victory in life.

“On the other hand, sure faith relies on the power and promises of God and helps us to stand when the floods come, lift burdens, spread hope, and move mountains.”

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY – Sure faith is based on obedience to God.

Prayer: Help us, O God, to have a strong foundation and a sure faith.  Amen.

To read the rest of the story in The Upper Room, click on the following link: https://devotional.upperroom.org/

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He sends us an angel to help us

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DAILY DEVOTIONAL – Saturday, October 16, 2021

For more Helpful Inspirational Material:

May you find comfort, encouragement, guidance, hope, inspiration, love, and peace – https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/. May you also find answers to your question(s) through the Scriptures that address every situation you face, and help with your problems.  Deb

Dear Lord, open our hearts and our minds to the power of Your Word, which as we read, we may know, understand, and obey Your Word for us today.  We pray in Jesus’ name.  Amen.  (Author unknown)

Today’s scripture reading:

[He sends us an angel to help us]

Elijah experienced the depths of fatigue and discouragement just after his two great spiritual victories: the defeat of the prophets of Baal and the answered prayer for rain.  Often discouragement sets in after great spiritual experiences, especially those requiring physical effort or involving great emotion.  To lead him out of depression, God sent an angel to first let him rest and eat.  Then God confronted him with the need to return to his mission—to speak God’s words in Israel.  (NLT)

1 Kings 19:1-13 – When Ahab got home, he told Jezebel everything Elijah had done, including the way he had killed all the prophets of Baal.  So Jezebel sent this message to Elijah: “May the gods strike me and even kill me if by this time tomorrow I have not killed you just as you killed them.”

Elijah was afraid and fled for his life.  He went to Beersheba, a town in Judah, and he left his servant there.  Then he went on alone into the wilderness, traveling all day.  He sat down under a solitary broom tree and prayed that he might die.  “I have had enough, Lord,” he said.  “Take my life, for I am no better than my ancestors who have already died.”

Then he lay down and slept under the broom tree.  But as he was sleeping, an angel touched him and told him, “Get up and eat!”  He looked around and there beside his head was some bread baked on hot stones and a jar of water!  So he ate and drank and lay down again.

Then the angel of the Lord came again and touch him and said, “Get up and eat some more, or the journey ahead will be too much for you.”

So he got up and ate and drank, and the food gave him enough strength to travel forty days and forty nights to Mount Sinai, the mountain of God.  There he came to a cave, where he spent the night.

But the Lord said to him, “What are you doing here, Elijah?”

Elijah replied, “I have zealously served the Lord God Almighty.  But the people of Israel have broken their covenant with you, torn down your altars, and killed every one of your prophets.  I am the only one left, and now they are trying to kill me, too.”

“Go out and stand before me on the mountain,” the Lord told him.  And as Elijah stood there, the Lord passed by, and a mighty windstorm hit the mountain.  It was such a terrible blast that the rocks were torn loose, but the Lord was not in the wind.  After the wind there was an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake.  And after the earthquake there was a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire.  And after the fire there was the sound of a gentle whisper.  When Elijah heard it, he wrapped his face in his cloak and went out and stood at the entrance of the cave.

And a voice said, “What are you doing here, Elijah?”

Quoted verse: Then [Elijah] lay down under the bush and fell asleep.  All at once an angel touched him and said, “Get up and eat.”  –1 Kings 19:5 (NIV)

“Story” – Tandy Balson’s (Alberta, Canada) story is titled “AN UNEXPECTED ANSWER;” here is a portion of Tandy’s story:

“I had taken on too much and found myself physically and emotionally drained.  Thoughts of all that I had committed to overwhelmed me.  I flopped down on the couch and cried out to God, ‘I don’t know how to do it all.  Right now I just want to give up.  Please help me.’  My eyes closed as I prayed and waited for an answer.  An hour later I roused from slumber, upset with myself for falling asleep during prayer.  I reflected on the situation and realized that when I called out in prayer, I didn’t ask for specifics because I didn’t know what I needed.  But what I did ask for was help, and help came in the form of rest.  An unexpected answer to prayer renewed my strength and focus.

“. . .  Today God still provides rest to refresh us and renew our passion for trusting and obeying God.”

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY – God can renew my strength in unexpected ways.

Prayer: Dear God, thank you for your love and provision.  Thank you for always giving us what we need, even when we don’t know what to ask for.  Amen.

Prayer Focus: SOMEONE WHO IS WEARY

To read the rest of the story in The Upper Room, click on the following link: https://devotional.upperroom.org/

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Many faithful older, righteous, people remain vital to Him

Click on the following link for helpful topics and previous posts: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/

DAILY DEVOTIONAL – Friday, October 15, 2021

For more Helpful Inspirational Material:

May you find comfort, encouragement, guidance, hope, inspiration, love, and peace – https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/. May you also find answers to your question(s) through the Scriptures that address every situation you face, and help with your problems.  Deb

Dear Lord, open our hearts and our minds to the power of Your Word, which as we read, we may know, understand, and obey Your Word for us today.  We pray in Jesus’ name.  Amen.  (Author unknown)

Today’s scripture reading:

[Many faithful older, righteous, people remain vital to Him]

Honoring God is not restricted to young people who seem to have unlimited strength and energy.  Even in old [righteous] age, devout believers can produce spiritual fruit.  There are many faithful older people who continue to have a fresh outlook and can teach us from a lifetime of experience of serving God. Seek out an elderly friend or relative who can tell you about his or her experiences with the Lord and challenge you to new heights of spiritual growth.  (NLT)

Psalm 92:12-15 – But the godly will flourish like palm trees and grow strong like the cedars of Lebanon.  For they are transplanted to the Lord’s own house.  They flourish in the courts of God.  Even in old age they will still produce fruit; they will remain vital and green.  They will declare, “The Lord is just!  He is my rock!  There is no evil in him!”

Quoted verse: In old age [the righteous] still produce fruit.  –Psalm 92:14 (NRSV)

“Story” – Karen Christy Kurtz (North Carolina, USA) titled her story “IN ALL SEASONS;” here is a portion of the story:

“After years of walking the heart-wrenching path of dementia, our beloved mother passed away in her sleep.  My brothers and I gathered in her room to weep, remember, and pray.  As we packed away her belongings, I picked up her well-worn Bible with The Upper Room tucked inside its tattered pages.

“I turned to The Upper Room devotional for the day that Mom had died, and then to the Bible verses she had read just hours before her death. . .  I sat and wept, sensing the presence of the Holy Spirit.

“While her body and mind were failing, our mother continued her daily spiritual practice.  Although she is gone, her powerful witness of God’s faithfulness in every season of life will continue to speak to me and to many generations of our family.  I am grateful for God’s eternal promises.”

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY – No matter the circumstance, God is faithful.

Prayer: Loving and eternal God, we praise you for the people who have taught us to walk in faith with confidence and with hope.  May your love guide us in faithful living all our days.  Amen.

Prayer Focus: FAMILIES DEALING WITH DEMENTIA

To read the rest of the story in The Upper Room, click on the following link: https://devotional.upperroom.org/

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Honest, good-hearted people who hear His Word

Click on the following link for helpful topics and previous posts: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/

DAILY DEVOTIONAL – Thursday, October 14, 2021

For more Helpful Inspirational Material:

May you find comfort, encouragement, guidance, hope, inspiration, love, and peace – https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/. May you also find answers to your question(s) through the Scriptures that address every situation you face, and help with your problems.  Deb

Dear Lord, open our hearts and our minds to the power of Your Word, which as we read, we may know, understand, and obey Your Word for us today.  We pray in Jesus’ name.  Amen.  (Author unknown)

Today’s scripture reading:

[Honest, good-hearted people who hear His Word]

[Jesus said] “And the seeds that fell on the good soil represent honest, good-hearted people who hear God’s word, cling to it, nd patiently produce a huge harvest.  –Luke 8:15 (NLT)

Luke 8:4-15 – One day Jesus told a story in the form of a parable to a large crowd that had gathered from many towns to hear him: “A farmer went out to plant his seed.  As he scattered it across his field, some seed fell on a footpath, where it was stepped on, and the birds ate it.  Other seed fell among rocks.  It began to grow, but the plant soon wilted and died for lack of moisture.  Other seed fell among thorns that grew up with it and choked out the tender plants.   Still other seed fell on fertile soil.  This seed grew and produced a crop that was a hundred times as much as had been planted!”  When he had said this, he called out, “Anyone with ears to hear should listen and understand.”

His disciples asked him what this parable meant.  He replied, “You are permitted to understand the secrets of the Kingdom of God.  But I use parables to teach the others so that the Scriptures might be fulfilled: ‘When they look, they won’t really see.  When they hear, they won’t understand.’

“This is the meaning of the parable: The seed is God’s word.  The seeds that fell on the footbath represent those who hear the message, only to have the devil come and take it away from their hearts and prevent them from believing and being saved.  The seeds on the rocky soil represent those who hear the message and receive it with joy.  But since they don’t have deep roots, they believe for a while, then they fall away when they face temptation.  The seeds that fell among the thorns represent those who hear the message, but all too quickly the message is crowded out by the cares and riches and pleasures of this life.  And so they never grow into maturity.  And the seeds that fell on the good soil represent honest, good-hearted people who hear God’s word, cling to it, and patiently produce a huge harvest.”

Quoted verse: These are the ones who, when they hear the word, hold it fast in an honest and good heart, and bear fruit with patient endurance.  –Luke 8:15 (NRSV)

“Story” – Kaycee Reardon’s (West Virginia, USA) story is titled “THROUGH THE WAVES;” here is a portion of Kaycee’s story:

“I was at the beach admiring God’s beautiful creation.  Wading into the water, I was being tossed around by rough ocean waves.  I kept falling down and going under. . .  I decided to go deeper in the water where the waves were easier to take and I wouldn’t get knocked down.

“I compared this experience to my relationship with God.  When I grow deeper and closer to God, I can take on life’s waves more easily.  I don’t get knocked down by every challenge that comes my way.

“Deeper into the water, I could stand up and face the waves with boldness.  When I dive deeper into scripture, God makes my burdens easier to carry.  I’m learning every day to find the joy in the waves and allow God to carry the weight.

“God waits for us to take the first step deeper into the waters.  Sometimes our challenges may be too hard to take on by ourselves.  But God is by our side wherever we go.  We don’t have to carry the weight alone.”

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY – As I draw nearer to God, my burdens become lighter.

Prayer: Dear Lord, help us to grow closer to you and to trust that you will help us carry any burden life brings us.  Amen

Prayer Focus:  TO GROW CLOSER TO GOD

To read the rest of the story in The Upper Room, click on the following link: https://devotional.upperroom.org/

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His Word strengthens our faith, leads us to do good

Click on the following link for helpful topics and previous posts: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/

DAILY DEVOTIONAL – Wednesday, October 13, 2021

For more Helpful Inspirational Material:

May you find comfort, encouragement, guidance, hope, inspiration, love, and peace – https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/. May you also find answers to your question(s) through the Scriptures that address every situation you face, and help with your problems.  Deb

Dear Lord, open our hearts and our minds to the power of Your Word, which as we read, we may know, understand, and obey Your Word for us today.  We pray in Jesus’ name.  Amen.  (Author unknown)

Today’s scripture reading:

[His Word strengthens our faith, leads us to do good]

The whole Bible is God’s inspired Word.  Because it is inspired and trustworthy, we should read it and apply it to our life.  In our zeal for the truth of Scripture, we must never forget its purpose—to equip us to do good.  It is our safeguard against false teaching and our source of guidance for how we should live.  It is our only source of knowledge about how we can be saved.  God wants to show you what is true and equip you to live for him.  How much time do you spend in God’s Word?  Read it regularly to discover God’s truth and to become confident in your life and faith.  Our knowledge of God’s Word is not useful unless it strengthens our faith and leads us to do good.  (NLT)

2 Timothy 3:1-17 – [Paul is talking to Timothy.]  You should know this, Timothy, that in the last days there will be very difficult times.  For people will love only themselves and their money.  They will be boastful and proud, scoffing at God, disobedient to their parents, and ungrateful.  They will consider nothing sacred.  They will betray their friends, be reckless, be puffed up with pride, and love pleasure rather than God.  They will act religious, but they will reject the power that could make them godly.  Stay away from people like that!

They are the kind who work their way into people’s homes and win the confidence of vulnerable women who are burdened with the guilt of sin and controlled by various desires.  (Such women are forever following new teachings, but they are never able to understand the truth.)  These teachers oppose the truth just as Jannes and Jambres opposed Moses.  They have depraved minds and a counterfeit faith.  But they won’t get away with this for long.   Someday everyone will recognize what fools they are, just as with Jannes and Jambres.

But you, Timothy, certainly know what I teach, and how I live, and what my purpose in life is.  You know my faith, my patience, my love, and my endurance.   You know how much persecution and suffering I have endured.  You know all about how I was persecuted in Antioch, Iconium, and Lystra—but the Lord rescued me from all of it.  Yes, and everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution.  But evil people and impostors will flourish.  They will deceive others and will themselves be deceived.

But you must remain faithful to the things you have been taught.  You know they are true, for you know you can trust those who taught you.  You have been taught the holy Scriptures from childhood, and they have given you the wisdom to receive the salvation that comes by trusting in Christ Jesus.  All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives.  It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right.  God uses it to prepare and equip his people to do every good work.

Quoted verse: All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.  –2 Timothy 3:16-17 (NIV)

“Story” – Nelson Nwosu (Anambra, Nigeria) titled his story “EQUIPPED;” here is a portion of Nelson’s story:

“Years ago, our family embarked on a road trip through Africa.  We traveled in a vehicle that was equipped for the rough, rural terrain, and we were well prepared with tools, extra fuel, and supplies. . .

“In 2 Timothy 3:16-17, Paul lays out the importance of being prepared for the journey of life.  To successfully navigate the changes and challenges we encounter, we must be well equipped.  We can do this by investing wholeheartedly in the word of God.  When we meditate on the Bible’s wisdom, we will find that it fills our hearts and minds with truth, peace, and strength. God’s word equips us to handle any difficulty we might face.  Scripture is our guide that will protect and carry us throughout our journey.”

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY – Meditating on the word of God will equip me for my life’s journey.

Prayer: Dear God, thank you for the wisdom of your word.  Equip us by your mercy to handle any challenge life may present.  Amen.

To read the rest of the story in The Upper Room, click on the following link: https://devotional.upperroom.org/

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A positive attitude can show others that we live for Him

Click on the following link for helpful topics and previous posts: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/

DAILY DEVOTIONAL – Tuesday, October 12, 2021

For more Helpful Inspirational Material:

May you find comfort, encouragement, guidance, hope, inspiration, love, and peace – https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/. May you also find answers to your question(s) through the Scriptures that address every situation you face, and help with your problems.  Deb

Dear Lord, open our hearts and our minds to the power of Your Word, which as we read, we may know, understand, and obey Your Word for us today.  We pray in Jesus’ name.  Amen.  (Author unknown)

Today’s scripture reading:

[A positive attitude can show others that we live for Him.]  The title of today’s post was inspired from the story in The Upper Room.

Can you hide a city that is sitting on top of a mountain?  Its light at night can be seen for miles.  If we live for Christ, we will glow like lights, showing others what Christ is like.  We hide our light by (1) being quiet when we should speak, (2) going along with the crowd, (3) denying the light, (4) letting sin dim our light, (5) not explaining our light to others, or (6) ignoring the needs of others.  Be a beacon of truth—don’t shut your light off from the rest of the world.  (NLT)

Matthew 5:13-16 – [Jesus said] “You are the salt of the earth.  But what good is salt if it has lost its flavor?  Can you make it salty again?  It will be thrown out and trampled underfoot as worthless.

“You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden.  No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket.  Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house.  In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.”

Quoted verse: Let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven.  –Matthews 5:16 (NRSV)

“Story” – Nikki Dyess (Alabama, USA) titled her story “SMALL GESTURES;” here is a portion of Nikki’s story:

“. . . I was presenting a lesson on the importance of a positive attitude . . .  A student I didn’t know very well surprised me by noting my consistent positivity and asking where it came from.  Without hesitation, I answered, “Jesus!”

“Through this experience, I realized that we have the opportunity to shine a light for the Lord in all situations.  Our actions impact each person we encounter.  As Christians, this is an opportunity to reflect God’s light into what can be a dark world.  This may seem daunting, but we are not alone.   Jesus walks alongside us and inspires us.

“Because of our relationship with Christ, we get to be his representatives and glorify God through our interactions with students, co-workers, customers, restaurant servers, sales associates, and everyone else.  Small gestures like a smile and a friendly word can open the door to share our faith with others.  Who knows?  We may be the only friendly face someone sees that day.  And thanks to the love of our Savior, we always have a reason to smile and share the source of our joy with others.”

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY – My positive attitude can share the light of Christ with others.

Prayer: Dear Jesus, thank you for loving us.  Help us to glorify you by reflecting your love through our everyday interactions with others.  Amen.

To read the rest of the story in The Upper Room, click on the following link: https://devotional.upperroom.org/

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