One Minute Devotional 12/09/2018

How Large Is Your Plate?

A question that each person must constantly ask is: how large is my “plate” not in terms of that amount of food that the dinner plate can hold but in terms of how I can use my time and talents.

It’s not uncommon to take on too much in the way of commitments. After all its just a little request, and I can tough it out for a while. We tend to forget at times that we need to prioritized our resources in order to remain healthy.

If we don’t, or are unwilling to do so, then something has to give way. All-to-often its relationships with family, loved ones, and God. We allow one, or more, of our relationships to suffer thinking that we can go back later and repair the damage; but do we?

The solution is a simple one – reduce the size of your plate. Prioritize what needs to be there and be selective as to what can, or should, be added. Allow nothing on that will result in something more important to be pushed off.

Need help in doing this? Go to God in prayer.

 

Scripture: Exodus 20:1-17 (noting the order in which He presents His commandments.

Your thoughts?

One Minute Devotional 12/02/2018

Technology

We live in a world in which technology is as much a part of the fabric of living as breathing. We’ve come a long way from the technology days of David’s sling that slew Goliath.

This technology by itself is neutral – neither good nor evil. It just exists, ready to be put to use. While God doesn’t speak to its existence, He does speak to how it is to be used – for good or evil.

It can be used in either realm – benefit or harm, good or evil. The computers that are the heart of the diagnostic tools available to your physician are certainly well within the realm of benefit. Those same computers, however, can be used for evil, doing harm and causing us to step away from God.

The point here is that this technology, no matter how powerful it is or will become, is only a tool. Therefore, the question is not the technology but the intent of the one who uses it. Do I use it to glorify Him or the world?

Scripture: Matthew 25:31-46

Your thoughts?

One Minute Devotional September 30th

Relationships

Over the years you’ve been blessed by the many relationships that you’ve encountered. As you look back over them, you see that they are a living reminder that life is all about relationships.

Most of our relationships are transient and for the most part enjoyable. However, there is one relationship that is permanent, joyful and by far the most important of all – our relationship with our Lord Jesus Christ. He brings a love to the relationship that is strong. So strong, that He willingly died on the cross so that you and He can continue your relationship for all of eternity.

So, the next time one of your relationships is not going as well as you think that it should, think back to what He did to ensure that His relationship with you went the way that it should. He gave everything to make the relationship with you work; can you say that you’ve done the same?

Scripture: Acts 10:43

Your thoughts?

One Minute Devotional September 23rd

Life’s Only Constant

The only constant in life is change, or so a very wise man once said. At first-blush you might think that he was just being funny, but history teaches us that he was spot-on with his observation. The world of today is no longer the same world as it was even a few short years ago.

There is one aspect of life, however, where his observation is not spot-on. In amongst the changes in our lives, there is one facet of life that has not changed – God’s word and His love for His children.

Our understanding of right and wrong, good and bad, acceptable and unacceptable may have shifted over time, but His word and His love for His children has not!

His love for each one of us is the same now as it’s always been: at times soft and comforting and at others, hard and demanding. Yet, in all of His dealings with us, this foundation has never changed.

Scripture: 1 John 4:19

Your thoughts?

A One Minute Devotional for the week of August 26th

Time For Your Children

When was the last time that you took the afternoon off to spend with your kids? Been a while has it!

As important as your work is, spending time with your kids is by far more important. We need to play with them, to read to them, and to show them what is important to us. We call this teaching and it’s important because if you don’t teach them, who will? If you don’t teach your kids, there are those who are more than willing to do so; most likely with lessons that you do not want them to learn and over which you have no control.

Jesus took time as a part of His public ministry to be with His disciples. Indeed, these were important times in His ministry. It was during these times that the disciples came to know Him, not just as a Rabbi, but as a fellow human being. They came to know what was important and what was not, what was acceptable and what was not.

He was investing in the future of His Church by investing time in these twelve men. Isn’t this what we do when we take time away from work to be with our children? Aren’t we investing in their future as well as ours?

 

Scripture: Proverbs 5:7; 7:24; 22:6

Your thoughts?

A One Minute Devotional for the week of August 19th

Communication, THE Problem in Marriage

If you were asked the question of what is the most commonly found and frequent problem in any relationship, what would you say?

The answer is poor, or nonexistent, communication. It takes time and effort to build a strong and vibrant relationship; and most, if not all, is best spent in building open and strong paths of communication. The only way for you to truly accomplish this is always be there and “plugged-in.”

But I’m always texting and communicating. Well, you may be passing information, but you are not communicating. You need to hear the other person’s voice and see his, or her, body language. You need to be present in the same space for the meaning of what is being said is not found just in the words alone

Just keep in mind that being present and “plugged-in” is how Jesus communicated. Don’t you think that the other party in your communication deserves the same?

 

Scripture: 2 Peter 3:1-12

Your thoughts?

Weekly Devotional 02.25.2018

Now Jesus and His disciples went out to the towns of Caesarea Philippi; and on the road He asked His disciples, saying to them, “Who do men say that I am?” So they answered, “John the Baptist; but some say, Elijah; and others, one of the prophets.” He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?”(Mark 8:27-29)
How would you answer the question that Jesus asked His disciples: who do you say that I am? Scripture tells us that it was Peter who answered, saying, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” It’s a good answer, but is it the answer that you would give if Jesus had asked you directly?

Peter is saying that Jesus, his rabbi, is the One that the Father promised to send to His children to be their savior who atones for their sins. He was sent to be the sacrifice that would rescue His children from the consequences of their sins – eternal separation from God.

He is also acknowledging that God is a living God, a God who is active in our daily lives. He is not just the One who, once He completed the Creation, walked away from it and allowed it to develop and function on its own.

Do you, like Peter, know Jesus as the One sent by the Father to be the sacrifice of atonement for your sin? Do you see Him as the One who has rescued you from the consequence of your sin? Is your relationship with Jesus, like Peter’s – personal and intimate?

Peter acknowledged that God was active in his life – a living God he called Him. Do you have that same understanding? Is God a living being who is active in your life? Is this your answer also?

Heavenly Father, I am so thankful that You loved me so much that You sent Christ Jesus into my life to rescue me from eternal separation from You. I am thankful that You have provided for my salvation so that I can spend eternity with You. Help me to share the knowledge of Your gift with others in my life. In Jesus’ name, AMEN.

Weekly Devotional 02.18.2018

Show me Your ways, O LORD:

Teach me Your paths.

(Psalm 25:4)

What do you do in those times where it seems like you’re lost and don’t know what to do next or where to turn for help? Everyone has a favorite aunt or uncle or friend to whom they can turn for advice, but what do you do when that advice doesn’t solve the problem?

You could take a trip to the local mall and peruse the self-help section of a bookstore. There on the shelves, you’ll find numerous books whose authors are ready to teach you how to handle your problem; perhaps even how to solve it in terms of the world’s values.

Unless you’re just looking to go to the mall, there is a better place to look for guidance and advice, however. The psalmist tells us to look to God, specifically to His Word found only in the Bible. There you will find instruction on how to handle your problem as well as how to avoid becoming lost in the first place.

What using God’s word to lead us out of our confusion does, that the self-help approach doesn’t necessarily do, is ensure that the path that we take out of our troubles honors Him, not man.

So, the next time you’re lost and don’t know where to turn, save yourself some gas money and spend time with God. Find a “secret place” (Matthew 6:6) that is quiet and talk with Him; then, then listen for Him to respond.

Heavenly Father, when I am lost and don’t know where to turn send Your Holy Spirit to guide me back to where I need to be. Speak to me via Your Word. Help me to see and understand where the Holy Spirit is taking me as He works according to Your Word. In Jesus’ name, AMEN.

Weekly Devotional 01.08.2018

I write to you, little children,

  Because your sins are forgiven you for His name’s sake.

1 John 2:12

Sometimes we get so wrapped up in the activities of living that we lose sight of the guiding principles of life and of our true identity. This passage from the apostle John’s letter to the Church speaks to this.

Most, if not all, of us at times get so caught up with living that we lose sight of who and what we are. We wear so many “hats”, often at the same time, that our true identity gets lost in the shuffle.

Its easy to lose track of the one identity that should never get lost – the children of God. Of all of the roles that define who and what we are, this one is truly the most important. It is this one identity that defines all others in a manner that reflects God’s will for us.

God has bestowed this title upon you because it marks you as one unconditionally loved by Him. When you are steeped in His love you become the father, mother, husband, wife, son, daughter and everything else that you are in a manner that gives glory and honor to Him.

So, wear the “hats” that you need to wear but don’t forget that you are first before everything else, a loved child of God. One so loved that He willingly sacrificed His only begotten Son so that you could be with Him for all of eternity.

Heavenly Father, my life is so busy at times that I sometimes lose sight of the one relationship that guides everything else; I lose sight of the fact that I am Your child. I get so busy sorting out who and what I should be now that I forget to base my actions on being Your child. When I lose my way during these times, guide me back to where I should be as Your child. In Jesus’ name, AMEN.

Devotional 12.24.2017 (Christmas Eve)

And having come in, the angel said to her, “Rejoice, highly favored one, the Lord is with you; blessed are you among women!” (Luke 1:28)
Mary – Jewish, young, a virgin, and engaged to be married. Sounds ideal doesn’t it? But wait – there’s a problem, she’s pregnant!

Mary’s pregnancy is grounds for divorce should Joseph choose to exercise his right to divorce her. Mary’s situation, however, deserves a second look.

For reasons known only to Him, God chose Mary to be the mother of the Messiah, the Savior that He had promised His children so long ago. From her flesh, sinful as it may have been for no one is without sin, Mary was chosen to bring into the world the greatest gift that mankind has ever received.

It is her child who will eventually hang on the cross in your place. It is her child who will suffer the wrath of an angry God on your behalf. Her child took upon Himself our sin so that we could stand before our Creator just as if we were without sin.

So, after all of the gifts have been unwrapped, the trash bagged and taken to storage, take time to give thanks for the one gift that didn’t need to be unwrapped – the gift of your salvation, a gift freely given to you by your Heavenly Father.

His is a beautiful gift, the most precious one that you will ever receive. Treasure it.

Merry Christmas,

Pastor

Heavenly Father, like Mary, I’m humbled by Your gift to me of Your Son Jesus, my Lord and my Savior. I know Father that I will stumble so when I do, please guide me back to a right path with You for there is where I want to be – in communion with You for all of eternity. In Jesus’ name, AMEN.