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DAILY DEVOTIONAL – Monday, May 8, 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:
Paul contrasts getting drunk with wine, which produces a temporary “high,” to being filled with the Spirit, which produces lasting joy. Getting drunk with wine is associated with the old way of life and its selfish desires. In Christ, we have a better joy, higher and longer lasting, to cure our depression, monotony, or tension. We should not be concerned with how much of the Holy Spirit we have but with how much of us the Holy Spirit has. Submit yourself daily to His leading and draw constantly on His power. (NLT)
Ephesians 5:1-20 – Follow God’s example in everything you do, because you are his dear children. Live a life filled with love for others, following the example of Christ, who loved you and gave himself as a sacrifice to take away your sins. And God was pleased, because that sacrifice was like sweet perfume to him.
Let there be no sexual immorality, impurity, or greed among you. Such sins have no place among God’s people. Obscene stories, foolish talk, and coarse jokes—these are not for you. Instead, let there be thankfulness to God. You can be sure that no immoral, impure, or greedy person will inherit the Kingdom of Christ and of God. For a greedy person is really an idolater who worships the things of this world. Don’t be fooled by those who try to excuse these sins, for the terrible anger of God comes upon all those who disobey him. Don’t participate in the things these people do. For though your hearts were once full of darkness, now you are full of light from the Lord, and your behavior should show it! For this light within you produces only what is good and right and true.
Try to find out what is pleasing to the Lord. Take no part in the worthless deeds of evil and darkness; instead, rebuke and expose them. It is shameful even to talk about the things that ungodly people do in secret. But when the light shines on them, it becomes clear how evil these things are. And where your light shines, it will expose their evil deeds. This is why it is said, “Awake, O sleeper, rise up from the dead, and Christ will give you light.”
So be careful how you live, not as fools but as those who are wise. Make the most of every opportunity for doing good in these evil days. Don’t act thoughtlessly, but try to understand what the Lord wants you to do. Don’t be drunk with wine, because that will ruin your life. Instead, let the Holy Spirit fill and control you. Then you will sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs among yourselves, making music to the Lord in your hearts. And you will always give thanks for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Be careful . . . how you live, not as unwise people but as wise, making the most of the time, because the days are evil. –Ephesians 5:15-16 (NRSV)
Wendy Orellana (Barquisimeto, Venezuela) titled her story “USING TIME WISELY;” here is a portion of Wendy’s story:
“One night, after a period of feeling detached from God, I received word that one of my childhood friends had died in a traffic accident. The news was so painful that I felt as if I had died inside, but it also caused me to reflect on my life in an extraordinary way and turn back to God. The worst pain of all was wondering, Why did it take such a tragic event to make me reflect on my life and seek God again? . . . The only thing I know with certainty is that I don’t want to detach anymore from the One who gave me life, from the Lord of hosts, from my loving Father.
“Many of us can be intense in our ambition for better finances, social positions, and recognition, but sometimes we forget that the Lord has given us these lives that we cherish. When I find myself striving for success, I have to ask myself: Am I putting my time to good use? Am I really living as if this were my last day? These and other questions help transform my thinking. God, who is rich in mercy, gives us opportunities again and again to repent of our wrongdoings and foolishness. When we do so, we can feel reborn.”
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY – Each day of life is a sacred gift from God.
Prayer: Dear God, remind us that you are the one who gives us life. And help us to cherish each day that you give us. Amen.
Prayer Focus: VICTIMS OF TRAFFIC ACCIDENTS
To read the rest of the story in The Upper Room, click on the following link: http://devotional.upperroom.org/