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Guidelines For Living Devotional
5 minutes | Jun 11, 2021
How To Find Joy In Your Circumstances
Have you ever had the urge to just break out in song? It may have been inspired by a beautiful morning, or the check that arrived in the mail, or the phone call from a best friend. You felt like shouting something that Handel would have written, something that would praise God from the depths of your being.
5 minutes | Jun 10, 2021
3 Steps To Healing After An Affair
When a friend of many years became involved in an affair, Annette Lawson began asking, "Why do people walk out on good marriages for someone who is totally different from themselves and the kind of a person they would live the rest of their lives with?" Finding answers to that question led to more than a decade of exhaustive research. When this sociologist was asked, "What advice would you give to someone contemplating an affair?" she replied, "One thing that hasn't changed about adultery is the danger. It really is a risky undertaking that can leave people's lives in ruins."
5 minutes | Jun 9, 2021
This Is Why Adultery Is Harmful
When I asked the Episcopal Bishop of Liberia what was the greatest problem facing families in his country, he immediately responded: "Unfaithfulness in marriage, in at least 90% of our homes." The bishop gave me a straightforward answer untainted with excuses or justification. He could well have said, "You know, we really can't help what's happening here ‑‑ it's our culture!" Or he could have told me, "Our problems here are the result of the media and the role models which have been imported. The rest of the world is destroying us here!"
5 minutes | Jun 8, 2021
How To Love And Hate Like Jesus
Loving what God loves and hating what He hates never comes easy. Do you know why? Most of the time, our agenda and His are not moving the same way. It's the age-old conflict of a child's will versus the will of his father. When our first grandson began to talk, one of the first phrases that he mastered clearly was, "I want...." But the way the youngster voiced it made it clear that he didn't need any encouragement to be assertive. He had his own agenda, and he was intent on getting his way.
5 minutes | Jun 7, 2021
Why Is Lying Harmful?
When a certain worker got too much money in his paycheck, he said nothing, thinking that he had indeed encountered some good luck. The comptroller, however, found his mistake and deducted the overpayment from the next check. This time, however, the worker loudly complained, "You made a mistake; you didn't pay me enough money." The comptroller said, "Look, last pay check, I overpaid you, and you didn't say anything then. Now, why do you complain when I deducted the amount of the overpayment?" Embarrassed, the worker began to blush and replied, "Look, I can overlook one mistake, but with two mistakes I had to say something."
5 minutes | Jun 4, 2021
Who Is The Jewish Messiah?
When a Japanese Christian came to San Francisco for a visit, he attended a church service where Ralph Sockman spoke on the Life of Jesus. Asked by a friend how he enjoyed the message, the guest replied, "Well to hear him tell it, Jesus was an American, a Methodist, and an Armenian. But everyone knows that it is not true, for Jesus was really a Japanese, a Baptist, and a Calvinist." Right!
5 minutes | Jun 3, 2021
What Does Jesus Really Look Like?
From the impressions made on the walls of the catacombs of Rome to the mansions of the wealthy, Jesus Christ has been the inspiration for the world's great art, and the face of Jesus has been the inspiration of all the world's great artists. Rubens, Raphael, DaVinci, Titian, Michelangelo, and thousands of others, have all taken brush and pallet in hand and painted the face of Jesus as they pictured it in their mind. The painting of the face of Christ done by Warner Sallman hangs in many homes, yet, when I finally cross heaven's threshold, for some reason, I do not expect Christ to look just like the person portrayed by the artists.
5 minutes | Jun 2, 2021
What Did Jesus Really Look Like?
It's an amazing fact, yet true: the writers of the four Gospels never gave to the world an actual description of what Jesus Christ really looked like. Nevertheless, there is an actual description of the appearance of Christ. One of the few that has survived the centuries is said to have been written by the governor of Judea, Publius Lentulus.
5 minutes | Jun 1, 2021
How Do I Get To Know Jesus?
Author Philip Yancey grew up in church. But he experienced a lot of confusion over what he learned about God and what he experienced in life. He wrote a book that shatters a lot of our cherished ideals and the images we have grown up with. He called the book, The Jesus I Never Knew.
5 minutes | May 31, 2021
How To Start Putting Your Faith In God
"Seeing is believing," so goes the old saying, yet from God's point of view, the very opposite is true. Believing brings spiritual vision, which clears the brain of fuzzy negative thinking. I've been thinking of the incident which took place as Jesus was on His way to Jerusalem, where He was to die. He knew this. A sense of urgency drove Him towards the Holy City. Jesus sensed that what would take place in Jerusalem was the very purpose for which He had come. What would happen was the main event of the ages. But as Jesus was leaving Jericho to take the road up to Jerusalem, He encountered a blind man—actually two of them—who cried out, "Have mercy on us, Son of David!" When Jesus heard this, He stopped. From a social standpoint, they weren't important. They really didn't count, but they counted with Jesus.
5 minutes | May 28, 2021
Begin Seeking God's Forgiveness Today
"There are six things the LORD hates, seven that are detestable to him," wrote Solomon 3,000 years ago. Numbers three and four on that list of character disorders which the Bible calls sins are "hands that shed innocent blood," and "a heart that devises wicked schemes."
5 minutes | May 27, 2021
Discover The Importance Of Honesty In Your Relationships
Rebekah lived in a polygamous society where the women were property and beautiful women were commodities to be purchased at the cost of gold or blood. Isaac, her husband, knew this all too well; so when he was asked, "Who is this woman?" he lied out of fear, saying, "She is my sister!" And why not? Who keeps faith with the enemy? A generation before, his father, Abraham, had essentially done the same thing to try to protect his mother. You can read about both incidents in the book of Genesis. This issue of lying to protect someone when the very act of dishonesty only endangers relationships all the more is not new. The incidents which I related took place almost 5,000 years ago, yet the issue is as relevant as your wife's most recent visit with her neighbor or best friend.
5 minutes | May 26, 2021
Why The Habit Of Lying Is Harmful
The practice of dishonesty is the second taboo on God's list of what He detests (See Proverbs 6:16-19). While God loves the sinner, He certainly dislikes some of his habits. Question: On a scale of 1-10, how honest are you? Would you say you are honest all of the time? Most of the time? Part of the time? Or whenever it suits your purpose?
5 minutes | May 25, 2021
How To Identify Pride In Your Life
The Bible leaves no question about where God stands in relationship to what He loves and what He hates. And furthermore, He makes it clear that He expects His people to incorporate His view in their personal lives. "There are six things the LORD hates," wrote Solomon in the book of Proverbs, and the first to be mentioned is pride. A lot of things could have been at the top of the list, yet arrogance and pride are especially distasteful to our heavenly Father. Why? Why not put drunkenness or infidelity at the top of that list? Why not drug use, or wars which tear families and nations apart?
5 minutes | May 24, 2021
6 Things The Lord Hates
When you have poor credit, banks usually refuse to loan you money; however, one loan company advertises that they will make loans when others turn you away because "you are human." Interesting--is it not--how often we overlook irresponsibility because "we are just human." How inconsiderate of banks not to loan money when you have a past record of failing to pay your debts!
5 minutes | May 21, 2021
What Is The Meaning Of Spiritual Light?
One of the remarkable things about life today is the fact that science knows so much about some things and so little about some other things which are very common, and we tend to take those things for granted—not sensing how very important they are to our survival.
5 minutes | May 20, 2021
How God's Light Can Change Lives
A coal miner was trapped by an accident deep in the heart of the earth, and after the initial shock of realizing what had happened, the man took inventory to see how badly he was hurt. His carbon lantern, the only light that he had, was buried under the debris which had covered him. But his hands were free. One leg was pinned by a large timber. After the initial shock, he knew that he was pretty badly bruised and frightened. Who wouldn't be scared?
5 minutes | May 19, 2021
Why Is God The Light Of The World?
In her book, The Fourth Instinct, Arianna Huffington tells of the parents who brought a baby boy home from the hospital, joining an older sibling already in the family. The four-year-old sister, however, immediately requested to be alone with the little boy. The parents, though, were afraid that the sister might not handle the little infant with care. "Why do you want to be alone with him?" Unsatisfied, the parents ignored the request. But finally, after persistent requests, the mother agreed; however, she stayed outside within reach should the baby cry.
5 minutes | May 18, 2021
Learn About The Life And Ministry Of Paul The Apostle
Some are born great, some have greatness thrust upon them, and some could be dumped out of an airplane in a brown paper bag over a country where they had never sat foot, and they would still achieve greatness. These are the ones who are truly great. Such was the individual born long ago of Jewish parents in the university town of Tarsus, located in the Zagros mountains of Turkey. During the first part of his life, he was identified as Saul of Tarsus, but following a dramatic encounter with the risen Christ, he became known as Paul, the Apostle.
5 minutes | May 17, 2021
Finding Light In The Midst If Darkness
One evening when the English essayist and author John Ruskin was a little boy, he was sitting at the window of his home watching the lamplighter progressively work his way up a hill lighting the street lamps. Poking his finger at the window pane to make a point, the little lad suddenly exclaimed, "Look! He's punching holes in the darkness."
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