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DAILY DEVOTIONAL – Saturday, May 6, 2017
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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:
2 Corinthians 11:16-33 – Once again, don’t think that I have lost my wits to talk like this. But even if you do, listen to me, as you would to a foolish person, while I also boast a little. Such bragging is not something the Lord wants, but I am acting like a fool. And since others boast about their human achievements, I will, too. After all, you, who think you are so wise, enjoy listening to fools! You put up with it when they make you their slaves, take everything you have, take advantage of you, put on airs, and slap you in the face. I’m ashamed to say that we were not strong enough to do that!
But whatever they dare to boast about—I’m talking like a fool again—I can boast about it, too. They say they are Hebrews, do they? So am I. And they say they are Israelites? So am I. And they are descendants of Abraham? So am I. They say they serve Christ? I know I sound like a madman, but I have served him far more! I have worked harder, been put in jail more often, been whipped times without number, and faced death again and again. Five different times the Jews gave me thirty-nine lashes. Three times I was beaten with rods. Once I was stoned. Three times I was shipwrecked. Once I spent a whole night and a day adrift at sea. I have traveled many weary miles. I have faced danger from flooded rivers and from robbers. I have faced danger from my own people, the Jews, as well as from the Gentiles. I have faced danger in the cities, in the deserts, and on the stormy seas. And I have faced danger from men who claim to be Christians but are not. I have lived with weariness and pain and sleepless nights. Often I have been hungry and thirsty and have gone without food. Often I have shivered with cold, without enough clothing to keep me warm.
Then, besides all this, I have the daily burden of how the churches are getting along. Who is weak without my feeling that weakness? Who is led astray, and I do not burn with anger?
If I must boast, I would rather boast about the things that show how weak I am. God, the Father of our Lord Jesus, who is to be praised forever, knows I tell the truth. When I was in Damascus, the governor under King Aretas kept guards at the city gates to catch me. But I was lowered in a basket through a window in the city wall, and that’s how I got away!
Paul wrote, “I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances.” –Philippians 4:11 (NIV)
Karol Ruth Whaley (California) titled her story “THE QUESTION;” here is a portion of Karol’s story:
“After my first few months working overseas – struggling with learning a new language and experiencing a culture very different from my own – I was beginning to have a negative attitude. Then the Holy Spirit brought to mind my last training session for this work. I looked up the verse quoted above and remembered the question our mentor asked us after reading Philippians 4: ‘Have you really learned to trust the Lord and be content in all circumstances?’
“Paul’s words encouraged me but were also convicting. . . . I realized that in comparison, my troubles were very small. I prayed, and the Lord restored my trust that God would help me to be content whatever challenges I encounter.
“When we pray about our struggles and seek God’s help, we become newly aware of God’s power in our lives. The same power that raised Jesus from the grave can transform us, giving us joyful hearts and grateful spirits no matter what comes our way.”
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY – I can overcome any difficulty with God’s help.
Prayer: Dear God, help us to trust you and be content, knowing that your deep love for us will see us through. Amen.
To read the rest of the story in The Upper Room, click on the following link: http://devotional.upperroom.org/