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DAILY DEVOTIONAL – Saturday, November 5, 2016
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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 ♥
Today’s scripture reading:
We can’t really know the depth of our character until we see how we react under pressure. It is easy to be kind to others when everything is going well, but can we still be kind when others are treating us unfairly? God wants to make us mature and complete, not to keep us from all pain. Instead of complaining about our struggles, we should see them as opportunities for growth. Thank God for promising to be with you in rough times. Ask him to help you solve your problems or to give you the strength to endure them. Then be patient. God will not leave you alone with your problems or to give you the strength to endure them. Then be patient. God will not leave you alone with your problems; he will stay close and help you grow.
Wisdom means “practical discernment.” It begins with respect for God, leads to right living, and results in increased ability to tell right from wrong. God is willing to give us this wisdom, but we will be unable to receive it if our goals are self-centered instead of God-centered. To learn God’s will, we need to read his Word and ask him to show us how to obey it. Then we must do what he tells us.
We must believe not only in the existence of God but also in his loving care. This includes relying on God and expecting that he will hear and answer when we pray. We must put away our critical attitude when we come to him. God does not grant every thoughtless or selfish request. We must have confidence that God will align our desires with his purposes. For more on this concept, read Matthew 21:21-22 below. (NLT)
James 1:2-6 – Dear brothers and sisters, whenever trouble comes your way, let it be an opportunity for joy. For when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be strong in character and ready for anything.
If you need wisdom—if you want to know what God wants you do do—ask him, and he will gladly tell you. He will not resent your asking. But when you ask him, be sure that you really expect him to answer, for a doubtful mind is as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind.
We know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. –Romans 5:3-4
JoAnn Tumbleston Jarman (South Carolina) titled her story “NEVER GIVE UP!” Here is JoAnn’s story:
During my teaching career I decided to pursue National Board Certification, a rigorous and demanding endorsement. Teachers are allowed only three attempts to pass the certification process. My two young children and my husband supported me emotionally and encouraged me.
“The year-one results came in; I did not make it. I was saddened and weary, knowing I had to endure the process again and wait an entire year for the new results. The year-two results came in; I did not make it. Finally, the third and last year I achieved my goal.
“I knew through those three difficult years my children were watching my actions and how I handled failure. I wanted them to know that God gives us the strength to persevere, that when you fall you get back up and keep trying.
“That three-year trial taught me a lot about endurance and made me a better person. I thank God for this experience and the opportunity to bear witness to my children that from our trials come strength of character and hope for the future.”
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY – Whether I win or lose, my perseverance will produce a godly character.
Prayer: Thank you, God, for giving us opportunities in our struggles to gain character and hope. Help us never to give up, even when we feel defeated. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.
Prayer Focus: THOSE PREPARING FOR EXAMS
To read other stories in The Upper Room, click on the following link: http://devotional.upperroom.org/
Many have wondered about Jesus’ statement that if we have faith and don’t doubt, we can move mountains. Jesus, of course, was not suggesting that his followers use prayer as “magic” and perform capricious “mountain moving” acts. Instead, he was making a strong point about the disciples’ (and our) lack of faith. What kinds of mountains do you face? Have you talked to God about them? How strong is your faith?
This verse is not a guarantee that we can get anything we want simply by asking Jesus and believing. God does not grant requests that would hurt us or others or that would violate his own nature or will. Jesus’ statement is not a blank check. To be fulfilled, our requests must be in harmony with the principles of God’s Kingdom. The stronger our belief, the more likely our prayers will be in line with God’s will, and then God will be happy to grant them. (NLT)
Matthew 21:21-22 – Then Jesus told them, “I assure you, if you have faith and don’t doubt, you can do things like this and much more. You can even say to this mountain, ‘May God lift you up and throw you into the sea,’ and it will happen. If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer.”