Posts Tagged ‘Devotional’

Thankfulness

December 2, 2008

Though the Thanksgiving holiday season is over, it is important to remember that every season is a season to give thanks. Here are a few meditations on the topic of thanksgiving.

God commands us to give thanks. “See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise… Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ…” (Eph. 5:15,20)

Give thanks always, for all things. This commandment could be repeated a thousand times and still be as powerful. It is difficult, but a good habit is to just thank God as you go about your daily business. But we cannot only thank Him for what we see as good, but we must thank Him for all things. “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are called according to his purpose.” (Rom. 8:28) Sometimes it is hard for me to give thanks for things that trouble me. But I need to!

To love God is to thank Him. This is for a couple of reasons. First, God commands us to thank him: “If ye love me, keep my commandments.” (John 14:15) Thus to love God is to keep His commandments, and to keep his commandments is to thank Him! Secondly, don’t you think God wants to be thanked? Do you want to be thanked? Surely we all do, and so does God. So let us show God our love for Him by thanking Him for all his many blessings.

Thankfulness does us a lot of good. In my life God has shown me that depression is always selfishness. If I am feeling down, I had better check and see if I am being selfish! What is the best way to get out of selfishness? Thankfulness is! How can we be stuck in our conceit and foolish discontentedness when we sincerely look at all that God has done for us? “O taste and see that the Lord is good…” (Psalm 34:8) And God has done so very much for each and every one of us. If you cannot think of anything else, think about the salvation that the Lord so freely offers!

One more thought on how thankfulness does us good. If someone kept knocking on your door day after day asking for things, would you like it? Probably not. Now let’s say that you are a very generous person (and we are called to be), and again and again give to this person. In turn they smile and walk away; or even worse, they take the gift they wanted so from out of your hands, frown, and then walk away depressed. Within the last few weeks I have found myself doing this same thing. Should God keep giving us what we want if we don’t even take the time to show appreciation? No: “And whatsoever we ask, we receive of him, because we keep his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight.” (1 John 3:22) In short, we need to thank God because otherwise He might just decide to stop giving us what we ask for!

Thankfulness is thus extremely important. My challenge is for us to develop an attitude that is thankful always in all things, and to develop a habit to give thanks constantly and consistently. God bless!

In Christ,

~ Anthony H.

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Weekly devotional number 1

November 13, 2008

Levi says:

This is the first of our weekly devotionals. I have the privilege of giving it this week. Now when I say something, you be sure to search the scripture and ask God if it is true. Too many people read or listen to something and never even imagine that it might be false. God wants us to search the Scripture and see if what they’re saying is true.

Knowing by fruits

Take a look at these verses, and read them carefully:

Mathew 7:15 Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. 16 Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? 17Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. 18 A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. 19Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. 20 Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them. 21Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? 23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.   Luke 3:9And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: every tree therefore which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.

I’m going to bring up something quite shocking. But realize its not just what I’m saying that’s shocking, its how I’m interpreting the scripture. It says “Ye shall know them by there fruits.” There are so many churches and youth groups out there that have bad trees. The people look like the world, act like the world, and do the same things the world does. They watch the same movies, listen to the same music, wear the same clothes. When you ask if they’re saved they say “Of course, I said a prayer.” Let’s examine that and see how that compares to what the Bible says. The holy scripture says, “A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit”. If those “Christians” are truly a good trees then they have to have good fruit. There is no two ways about it.

So how do you know if yourself or someone else is truly saved? In my way of seeing it, you have to believe in Jesus Christ to forgive your sins and repent, after that you need spend your life abiding in Him. How do you know that you’ve believed? By looking at your fruits. If you’ve truly believed it will show in your life. What changes have a occurred because of getting saved? Of course we know Christians sin. The Bible tells us that if you say you aren’t sinning your lying. But a true Christian will let God convict him of his sin and repent. Some people say they’ve got God, but they don’t show any signs of Him. That is like a business man coming into a meeting at his office. He wears a nice trim suit and his hair is perfectly in place, but he’s half an hour late. He was supposed to be the speaker. He says to the other men, “Sorry I’m late. You see, I was driving down the highway when I got a flat. I pulled to the side of the road and started to change it. But then all of a sudden a Mack truck veered into me and smacked me twenty feet to the side of the road. I then finished putting the tire on.” If a man said something like that, the others would think he’s ludicrous. He would be one of two things, lying or crazy. That is how it is with God! If you say that you’ve met with God who is infinitely bigger than any semi, how could you possibly not be radically changed?

Some people get saved over and over rededicating their life to Christ. Does that sound biblical? Others wonder if they’re actually saved, so someone will ask, “Did you pray a prayer one time?” or “Did you write down when you prayed?” Does that sound biblical? When does the bible say pray a prayer and you will be saved. No! It says believe. How do you know if you believe? You shall know them by their fruits. There are so many people out their that go to church and Sunday school. But when you look at their life, their fruits are the same as their roots.

What does all of this mean? It means there are a lot of “Christians” who are still lost. God will say, “Depart from me for I never knew you.” This widely broadens our mission field.
Think about what I’ve said, pray and believe. If you want to hear more, the majority of this was taken from this message: http://www.godtube.com/view_video.php?viewkey=19fd9c84c942a08316e0. I would strongly encourage watching it (even though it’s really long).

God Bless