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Showing posts from December, 2020

Verse

 Not to us, Lord , not to us but to your name be the glory, because of your love and faithfulness.  Why do the nations say, “Where is their God?”  Our God is in heaven; he does whatever pleases him.  But their idols are silver and gold, made by human hands.  They have mouths, but cannot speak, eyes, but cannot see.  They have ears, but cannot hear, noses, but cannot smell.  They have hands, but cannot feel, feet, but cannot walk, nor can they utter a sound with their throats.  Those who make them will be like them, and so will all who trust in them.  All you Israelites, trust in the Lord — he is their help and shield.  House of Aaron, trust in the Lord — he is their help and shield.  You who fear him, trust in the Lord — he is their help and shield.  The Lord remembers us and will bless us: He will bless his people Israel, he will bless the house of Aaron,  he will bless those who fear the Lord — small and great alike.  May the Lord cause you to flourish, both you and your children.  M

New Plan: NEW YEAR, NEW MERCIES (Day 1)

  Here’s the bottom line. The Christian life, the church, our faith are not about us, they’re about Him—His plan, His kingdom, His glory. It really is the struggle of struggles. It is counterintuitive for us all. It is the thing that makes our lives messy and our relationships conflicted. It is what sidetracks our thoughts and kidnaps our desires. It is the thing below all the other things that you could point to that argues for our need for grace. It is the one battle that one never escapes. It is the one place where ten out of ten of us need rescue. It is the fight that God wages on our behalf to help us to remember that life is simply not about us. It is about God—His plan, His kingdom, and His glory.  This is precisely why the first four words of the Bible may be its most important words: “In the beginning, God . . .” These are four thunderously important words. They really do change everything, from the way that you think about your identity, meaning, and purpose to the way that y

Verse 3

 The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.” Exodus 14:14 NIV https://exodus.bible/exodus-14-14

Verse 2

 He makes wars cease to the ends of the earth. He breaks the bow and shatters the spear; he burns the shields with fire. He says, “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” The Lord Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress. Psalms 46:9‭-‬11 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/psa.46.9-11.NIV

Verse 1

 Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.” Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. James 4:13‭-‬14 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/jas.4.13-14.NIV

Dealing with Uncertainty (Day 5) Last Day

  Practice Being Still  “The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.” - Exodus 14:14  Just after they escaped from Egypt, Moses encouraged the Israelites with those words. Perhaps he understood that our natural reaction in moments of uncertainty is to restlessly bounce between anxiety and despair.  Feelings of uncertainty can result in the prefrontal cortex in your brain “shutting down”: impairing your ability to solve problems, pay attention, and stay flexible. This increases your chances of engaging in irrational behavior and makes you more prone to anxiety, depression, and stress.  That’s why it’s important to fix your mind on what matters by centering your heart on God’s truths. Stillness is a discipline that takes continual, conscious practice, but the act of stillness sharpens our senses and makes us more aware of God’s presence in our present circumstances.   So, how do you practice being still? One practical way is by walking through the 3 action steps discussed thi

Verse 9

 being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. Philippians 1:6 NIV https://philippians.bible/philippians-1-6

Verse 8

 There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love. 1 John 4:18 NIV https://1john.bible/1-john-4-18

Verse 7

  Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.” Deuteronomy 31:6 NIV

Verse 6

 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:37‭-‬39 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/rom.8.37-39.NIV

Verse 5

 God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Psalms 46:1 NIV https://psalm.bible/psalm-46-1

Verse 4

 I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my loving eye on you. Psalms 32:8 NIV https://psalm.bible/psalm-32-8

Verse 3

 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:7 NIV https://philippians.bible/philippians-4-7

Verse 2

 The Lord your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in his love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing.” Zephaniah 3:17 NIV https://zephaniah.bible/zephaniah-3-17

Verse 1

 Cast your cares on the Lord and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous be shaken. Psalms 55:22 NIV https://psalm.bible/psalm-55-22

Dealing with Uncertainty (Day 4)

  Pick Up God’s Declarations  Joshua summoned all Israel … “…you know in your hearts and souls, all of you, that not one word has failed of all the good things that the Lord your God promised concerning you. All have come to pass for you; not one of them has failed.” - Joshua 23:2;14 Joshua spent most of his life enduring adversity, setbacks, and disappointment. And yet, he never stopped believing that God would keep His promises. By the end of his life, Joshua saw God’s faithfulness come to pass, which is why he told the Israelites to recognize and remember God’s promises.  The thoughts you fill your mind with are crucial because  what you cling to influences your worldview .  If you choose to dwell on God’s promises, you start to recognize God’s blessings during uncertain times. Plus, trusting that God will redeem your present pain equips you to walk forward in faith and keep on fighting.  As you walk forward today,  reflect on some of God’s promises , and let them transform the way

Verse 2

 When the people saw that Moses was so long in coming down from the mountain, they gathered around Aaron and said, “Come, make us gods who will go before us. As for this fellow Moses who brought us up out of Egypt, we don’t know what has happened to him.”  Aaron answered them, “Take off the gold earrings that your wives, your sons and your daughters are wearing, and bring them to me.” So all the people took off their earrings and brought them to Aaron. He took what they handed him and made it into an idol cast in the shape of a calf, fashioning it with a tool. Then they said, “These are your gods, Israel, who brought you up out of Egypt.” Exodus 32:1‭-‬4 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/exo.32.1-4.NIV

Verse 1

 “No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.   “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes?  Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?  Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life ?   “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin.  Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these.  If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith?  So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What s

Dealing with Uncertainty (Day 3)

  Lay Down Your Expectations When the people saw that Moses delayed to come down from the mountain, the people gathered themselves together to Aaron and said to him, “Up, make us gods who shall go before us.” - Exodus 32:1 400 years. That’s how long the Israelites waited for God to deliver them from slavery. But after they left Egypt, God didn’t take them directly to Canaan. Instead, they camped at the base of a mountain while God instructed Moses.  But after 40 days, the Israelites grew frustrated. Their delayed expectations led to poor decisions: they rejected God and pursued whatever pleased them.  If you’ve ever felt frustrated by an uncertain season that lasts longer than you anticipated, you’re not alone. We can become so focused on our disappointments that we forget God is still in control. That’s why it’s important to remember that  your waiting is never wasted . Even though the Israelites couldn’t see it at the time, God wasn’t withholding His promises from them—He was prepari

Verse 1

 The whole Israelite community set out from the Desert of Sin, traveling from place to place as the Lord commanded. They camped at Rephidim, but there was no water for the people to drink. So they quarreled with Moses and said, “Give us water to drink.” Moses replied, “Why do you quarrel with me? Why do you put the Lord to the test?”  But the people were thirsty for water there, and they grumbled against Moses. They said, “Why did you bring us up out of Egypt to make us and our children and livestock die of thirst?”  Then Moses cried out to the Lord , “What am I to do with these people? They are almost ready to stone me.”  The Lord answered Moses, “Go out in front of the people. Take with you some of the elders of Israel and take in your hand the staff with which you struck the Nile, and go. I will stand there before you by the rock at Horeb. Strike the rock, and water will come out of it for the people to drink.” So Moses did this in the sight of the elders of Israel. And he called th

Verse 2

 Verse 2 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. Ephesians 3:21 NIV

Dealing with Uncertainty verse

 No one will be able to stand against you all the days of your life. As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you. Be strong and courageous, because you will lead these people to inherit the land I swore to their ancestors to give them. “Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go. Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:5‭-‬9 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/jos.1.5-9.NIV

New Plan: Dealing with Uncertainty (Day 1)

  Finding Courage in the Face of Uncertainty “Be strong and courageous, for you are the one who will lead these people to possess all the land I swore to their ancestors I would give them.” - Joshua 1:6   Think of Joshua as he prepared to lead the Israelites into Canaan—a place overrun by their enemies. Although God promised them this land, the journey to obtain the promise was long, hard, and filled with uncertainty.  Perhaps that’s why God reminds Joshua: “Just as I was with Moses, so I will be with you. I will not leave you or forsake you. Be strong and courageous…” God knew Joshua’s secret concerns, and so He spoke to the fear in Joshua’s heart.  The same God who encouraged Joshua also wants to encourage you. He understands how easily fear and anxiety can paralyze anyone forced out of their comfort zones and into circumstances beyond their control.   Thankfully, no matter how uncertain you may feel, the outcome of every situation is known to God. And God promises to never leave or

Verse 3

 But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8 NIV https://romans.bible/romans-5-8

Verse 2

 remember that at that time you were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship in Israel and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and without God in the world. But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ. Ephesians 2:12‭-‬13 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/eph.2.12-13.NIV

Verse 1

 After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi from the east came to Jerusalem and asked, “Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.”  When King Herod heard this he was disturbed, and all Jerusalem with him. When he had called together all the people’s chief priests and teachers of the law, he asked them where the Messiah was to be born. “In Bethlehem in Judea,” they replied, “for this is what the prophet has written:  “ ‘But you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; for out of you will come a ruler who will shepherd my people Israel.’ ”  Then Herod called the Magi secretly and found out from them the exact time the star had appeared. He sent them to Bethlehem and said, “Go and search carefully for the child. As soon as you find him, report to me, so that I too may go and worship him.”  After they had heard the king, they went on their way

Praying with Wonder thru Christmas (Day 7) Last Day

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  Let’s pray:   Father in heaven, we remember that we were at one time separated from Christ, alienated from your people and strangers to your covenants, having no hope and without you in the world. But now, O God, in Christ Jesus, we who once were far off, like magi, have been brought near by the blood of Christ. Christmas is a tribute to your grace, not our deservedness. Advent marks your coming in Christ to pluck us from our sin, and only then our coming to Christ to bow the knee in worship. He came not to call the righteous but sinners. We own our rebellion and many failures, and gladly bow before your Son.   In his name we pray. Amen.

Verse

 And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”  Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,  “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”  When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”  So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. When they had seen him, they spre

Praying with Wonder thru Christmas (Day 6)

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  Let’s pray:   Father in heaven, make us more like the shepherds who went to see Jesus at his birth, glorifying you through our joy in you, and praising you through our words and witness in the world. We don’t want to pretend to be strong and wise and noble. We acknowledge our lowliness and marvel that you sent your Son from the heights of heavens to the lowliest of earthly accommodations to announce and accomplish this good news of great joy.    In his name we pray. Amen.

Verse

 In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) And everyone went to their own town to register.  So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them. Luke 2:1‭-‬7 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/luk.2.1-7.NIV

Praying with Wonder thru Christmas (Day 5)

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  Let’s pray:   Father in heaven, we thank you for the great joy of Christmas. The coming of your Son, for us and for our salvation, is indeed a cause for great joy—and he himself the greatest of all joys. Father, stir in us in this Advent season a joy in Christ that is increasingly high and wide and deep enough to endure the many trials and sufferings we face in this age.   In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

Verse 2

 In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:  Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;  rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness.  And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death— even death on a cross! Philippians 2:5‭-‬8 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/php.2.5-8.NIV

Verse 1

 The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth. John 1:14 NIV https://john.bible/john-1-14

Praying with Wonder thru Christmas (Day 4)

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  Let’s pray:   Father, we marvel at the singular person of your Son. He was fully divine, in infinite bliss with you, from all eternity, and yet he took on our humanity and subjected himself to the pains and miseries of our sin-sick world in order to save us. Your love for us in and through Christ is far beyond our full finding out, but we want to know more. And what we do know is cause for great worship. We adore your Son, dear Father, and long to know and enjoy him more, and all the more in this Advent season.   In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

Verse 2

 For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. Colossians 1:16‭-‬17 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/col.1.16-17.NIV

Verse 1

 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. John 1:1‭-‬3 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/jhn.1.1-3.NIV

Praying with Wonder thru Christmas (Day 3)

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  Let’s pray:   Father in heaven, may your Son assume his rightful place in our hearts this Advent.  At this most material time of the year in our materialistic society, your Son’s pre-existence reminds us of his preciousness over every party and present, over all the trees and trimmings. He is before, and better than, anything in this created world. Cause our hearts to swell in this season at the gift of the person of Christ as our greatest treasure.   In his precious name we pray. Amen.

Verse 2

 “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord .  “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. Isaiah 55:8‭-‬9 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/isa.55.8-9.NIV

Verse 1

 And Mary said: “My soul glorifies the Lord  and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,  for he has been mindful of the humble state of his servant. From now on all generations will call me blessed,  for the Mighty One has done great things for me— holy is his name.  His mercy extends to those who fear him, from generation to generation.  He has performed mighty deeds with his arm; he has scattered those who are proud in their inmost thoughts.  He has brought down rulers from their thrones but has lifted up the humble.  He has filled the hungry with good things but has sent the rich away empty.  He has helped his servant Israel, remembering to be merciful  to Abraham and his descendants forever, just as he promised our ancestors.” Luke 1:46‭-‬55 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/luk.1.46-55.NIV

Praying with Wonder thru Christmas (Day 2)

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  Let’s pray:   Father, you humble the proud and exalt the humble, and we stand in awe. We recognize that the way we feel fragile, exhausted, and burdened this Advent may mean we are right where you want us. You sent your Son to help the weak and weary. Open our eyes to the weaknesses we try to ignore and cover over. In your Son, we are safe to own them, and come humbly to you, to rejoice in you and your strong arms, not ours. Magnify yourself in us this season through our rejoicing in you and your Son.    In his name we pray. Amen.

Verse 2

 For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God. He was put to death in the body but made alive in the Spirit. 1 Peter 3:18 NIV https://1peter.bible/1-peter-3-18

Verse 1

 This is how the birth of Jesus the Messiah came about : His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be pregnant through the Holy Spirit. Because Joseph her husband was faithful to the law, and yet did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly.  But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.” Matthew 1:18‭-‬21 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/mat.1.18-21.NIV

New Plan: Praying with Wonder thru Christmas (Day 1)

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  Let’s pray:   Father in heaven, we ask that this Advent you would seal deep within our souls the meaning of Your Son’s coming.  Jesus came not to entertain. He came not merely to make a great story.  He came to restore us rebels to our God. Advent is personal.  Draw us closer in these days to the heart of Christ, which is your own heart, and make his first advent, in all its realness and substance, more real in our lives.   In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

Verse

 What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things? Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. Who then is the one who condemns? No one. Christ Jesus who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written: “For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.” No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to sep

Day 18 - Last Day

  Day 18: Restored “Evil you ain’t got no control of me  I’m never too far from the Blood that flow for me I lost a lot But got too much to gain I’ll probably never be the same  But I ain’t worried cause i know who restorin’ me” By now you’ve taken the time to listen to my latest album, Restoration, and you’ve been tracking along this Bible study with me to see the various aspects of God’s character that reveal his heart for Restoration. I’ve been intentional to let you in on some of the struggles with faith I experienced and how they have shaped the music and the most recent years of my career. I pray this study has been beneficial to you. Maybe you’ve found closure on some things in your life. Maybe you’re still struggling to find faith. If you’ve made it this far, I can say with certainty that God has kept you and given you another day to fight the good fight of faith.  To close out the deluxe edition of my album, I invited some friends along to share first hand their journey in the

Verse 3

 This, then, is how you ought to regard us: as servants of Christ and as those entrusted with the mysteries God has revealed. Now it is required that those who have been given a trust must prove faithful. I care very little if I am judged by you or by any human court; indeed, I do not even judge myself. My conscience is clear, but that does not make me innocent. It is the Lord who judges me. Therefore judge nothing before the appointed time; wait until the Lord comes. He will bring to light what is hidden in darkness and will expose the motives of the heart. At that time each will receive their praise from God.  Now, brothers and sisters, I have applied these things to myself and Apollos for your benefit, so that you may learn from us the meaning of the saying, “Do not go beyond what is written.” Then you will not be puffed up in being a follower of one of us over against the other. For who makes you different from anyone else? What do you have that you did not receive? And if you did

Verse 2

 So then, no more boasting about human leaders! All things are yours, whether Paul or Apollos or Cephas or the world or life or death or the present or the future—all are yours, and you are of Christ, and Christ is of God. 1 Corinthians 3:21‭-‬23 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/1co.3.21-23.NIV

Verse 1

 The Lord appeared to us in the past, saying: “I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with unfailing kindness. Jeremiah 31:3 NIV https://jeremiah.bible/jeremiah-31-3

Day 17

  Day 17: Come Thru Jesus “I was busy Tryna prove a point And wasn’t winnin’ nothin’ I was losin’ points Now I’m busy Tryna love the people Even though they wanna take away my voice I love me  Don’t let it bother you All that bitterness will swallow you Persecute me Call me fake and stupid But if Jesus love me you should follow suit” This song is a boast in the freedom of Christ. I’m celebrating the freedom from ego and the perceived criticisms of others. Over the course of the last few years, I have grown confident again to do what God has called me to do, but this freedom only comes by delivery from Jesus. In this quick study, I want to share a little more on this concept and maybe you’ll end up having a little fun with this record because I definitely had fun making it. So let’s dive in. Take a minute to imagine you’re sitting at a table and there’s an empty chair across from you. Now, imagine the last person that gave you a compliment comes in, sits down in the chair and tells you

Verse 2

 For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs. 1 Timothy 6:10 NIV https://1timothy.bible/1-timothy-6-10

Day 16

  Day 16: Rich and Famous “Yeah, Aye Coast to coast Now these people know my name Hit new lows The higher you go the more empty space Fill the holes With drugs tryin to medicate the pain This a cold world So I went and iced out my chain Aye Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous Up so high We just livin dangerous Everybody wanna be Rich and Famous  Seem like the love gone  When you nameless” Fame is a drug and trying to be rich is a trap. It might sound harsh, but an honest look at our culture will show it to be true. In the past couple of years, we’ve seen a number of our youngest celebrities dying tragically from drug overdoses. There’s been an opioid crisis hitting well-to-do families across America, and despite all the ways the internet and social media seem to be connecting us, a lot of us are secretly suffering in silence as we battle loneliness and depression.  I’ve been there. What makes all this worse, is our media is not helping. The messages we receive tell us we should buy more

Verse

 Then Jesus said to his disciples, “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.  For whoever wants to save their life  will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will find it.  What good will it be for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul?  For the Son of Man is going to come in his Father’s glory with his angels, and then he will reward each person according to what they have done.   “Truly I tell you, some who are standing here will not taste death before they see the Son of Man coming in his kingdom.” Matthew 16:24‭-‬28 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/mat.16.24-28.NIV

Day 15

  Day 15: 10 Toes “I remember when they said these Christian rappers corny Shoot I even thought it too Couple Grammys, plenty plaques And everybody wanna be a Christian rapper too Well get to work Go to these prisons and spit a verse Spend all your time tryna live the word Only for people to call you slurs Nah you don’t want it Used to pull up in the projects Knock on every door  And tell the people come outside A couple speakers and a mic We was grillin’ and rappin Watchin’ people come alive Never did it for the fame or money You could tell when Christians started fallin’ back Ten toes down” I remember once being told the kingdom of God is like a pack of dogs running. If watched long enough an observer would see the pack first running at full steam and in unison until then, after a while, one by one their numbers decrease until finally there is only one dog left still running. In the final estimate the one dog who kept running had just one thing separating him from the other dogs: he

Verse 2

 For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.  Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior. But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation— if you continue in your faith, established and firm, and do not move from the hope held out in the gospel. This is the gospel that you heard and that has been proclaimed to every creature under heaven, and of which I, Paul, have become a servant. Colossians 1:19‭-‬23 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/col.1.19-23.NIV

Verse 1

 But when Christ came as high priest of the good things that are now already here, he went through the greater and more perfect tabernacle that is not made with human hands, that is to say, is not a part of this creation. He did not enter by means of the blood of goats and calves; but he entered the Most Holy Place once for all by his own blood, thus obtaining eternal redemption. The blood of goats and bulls and the ashes of a heifer sprinkled on those who are ceremonially unclean sanctify them so that they are outwardly clean. How much more, then, will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself unblemished to God, cleanse our consciences from acts that lead to death, so that we may serve the living God!  For this reason Christ is the mediator of a new covenant, that those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance—now that he has died as a ransom to set them free from the sins committed under the first covenant. Hebrews 9:11‭-‬15 NIV https://b

Day 14

  Day 14: Nothing Left to Hide “I got too much to say but haven't said enough I called the music business bluff I ain’t famous enough Who cares if they think I'm saved enough? Grace is sufficient My blood donor gave enough” It’s never enough.  I never achieved enough, looked holy enough, or said enough of the right things to get all the acceptance I wanted from others.  Whatever your past success, you can feel the pressure to prove it again.  Prove your worth, justify your value (or maybe that’s just what we tell ourselves).  Especially in today’s world, the endless scrolling through social media is only a reminder of how someone else has it better and we aren’t measuring up.   Many say to combat those thoughts, we need to be constantly telling ourselves how great we are.  But Christ died for a better way, a different approach to finding our worth.  Instead of trying to make it come from within, Jesus, the Son of God who is our great high priest, told us we don’t have to preten

Verse 2

 Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. 2 Corinthians 4:16‭-‬18 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/2co.4.16-18.NIV

Verse 1

 The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the Lord ’s favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, and provide for those who grieve in Zion— to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the Lord for the display of his splendor. They will rebuild the ancient ruins and restore the places long devastated; they will renew the ruined cities that have been devastated for generations. Strangers will shepherd your flocks; foreigners will work your fields and vineyards. And you will be called priests of the Lord , you will be named ministers of our God. You will feed on the wealth of nations, a

Day 13

  Day 13: Only Human “I thought I was ruined He started renewing I look at my life I'm like “what is you doing?” He look at my life He like “already knew it” And yet I still love you. I'm walking you through it Your actions are foolish But I know you're human” It’s easy to think of God as distant or far off because of something we’ve done, but over and over again in Scripture we see God’s heart pursuing His children.  A casual reading of just some of the Bible will reveal that His people don’t always choose the best path, the one which will honor the Lord and bring them life.  Over and over those who are supposed to be committed to righteousness have actions that don’t look that way. How can a God so holy also be so forgiving?  Our pattern is the same, but thankfully, our God never changes either. He is always inviting us into a relationship with Him.  Even in our sins, the offer still stands.  In Isaiah, you can see God’s heart for the brokenhearted, it says that Isaiah wa

Verse 3

 If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing.  Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.  Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears. When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I a

Verse 2

 Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. Hebrews 4:16 NIV https://hebrews.bible/hebrews-4-16

Day 12 verse 1

 This is what the Lord says: “What fault did your ancestors find in me, that they strayed so far from me? They followed worthless idols and became worthless themselves. Jeremiah 2:5 NIV https://jeremiah.bible/jeremiah-2-5

Day 12

  Day 12: Still  “I’m still  Still willing to love you I’m still Still willing to trust you I’m still Still rocking with you I don't wanna let you go” When life gets hectic and there are so many people demanding your time, it is easy to forget about the things that matter most. As my career grew, the demands to maintain that success grew as well. Then, before my own eyes, the things that meant the most to me started to suffer. The world saw my success, yet my relationships with the people I love struggled. My relationship with God suffered.  I wrote this song in the midst of restoring my marriage. At times the right desire to provide saw me sacrificing quality time and investing less at home where I can’t be replaced. Through that process, God revealed sometimes busyness can be a means of hiding our negligence.  My wife has been a huge reminder that when this happens, there’s forgiveness. Through this kind of love, I’m realizing despite my many distractions, unconditional love rema

Day 11 verse

 Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. Hebrews 12:1‭-‬3 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/heb.12.1-3.NIV

Day 11

  Day 11: Keep Going  “We never quit we just do it til death I ain’t gone go til no life in my breath After they carry and bury me Tell them don't worry I'll be back to finish my reps” Weariness comes for all of us. Lost jobs, death, pain. Sometimes it feels like it never ends. How will we make it? But God doesn’t leave us alone in the weariness. In Hebrews 12:1, the Scriptures say “since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses.” You weren’t meant to run this race alone. And it is a race. Life is not meaningless meandering, but a purpose-filled sprint. You were made to run alongside others and to run with a fixed goal in mind, Jesus.  When it feels too much and like you just can’t keep going, remember what Jesus endured. His race was filled with scorn, one of the most painful ways to die, and rejection from the very people He ran on behalf of. We can find strength and endurance through the founder and perfecter of our faith.  Prayer: God give me endurance to run th

Restoration verse

 Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death. For what the law was powerless to do because it was weakened by the flesh, God did by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh to be a sin offering. And so he condemned sin in the flesh, in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fully met in us, who do not live according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.  Those who live according to the flesh have their minds set on what the flesh desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires. The mind governed by the flesh is death, but the mind governed by the Spirit is life and peace. The mind governed by the flesh is hostile to God; it does not submit to God’s law, nor can it do so. Those who are in the realm of the flesh cannot please God.  You, however, are not in

Day 10

  Day 10: Zombie “I was in the dark I swear you couldn’t tell me nothing I was after flesh I guess I was some type of zombie Demons used to haunt me Then I heard the voice of God I’m grateful Jesus called me” Life is full of things to chase. Money, fame, sex. Things that will fill you for a moment, but never satisfy. When I reflect back on my own life and the former pursuit of those things, I realize I was like a Zombie. I was living for the things of the flesh. But that’s not the end of the story. God called me, woke me and gave me a new purpose. He gives us something to chase that will always fulfill, always satisfy and never fail, Him.  In Romans 8, the Scriptures explain that a mind focused on flesh leads to death, but a mind focused on what the Spirit desires, gives life and peace. What is your mind focused on? What do you chase?  When your thoughts wander, do you dwell on the things of the Lord, or is it consumed by the numbers in your bank account, the new shoes you want or what

Verse 3

 Because of the Lord ’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail.  They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. Lamentations 3:22‭-‬23 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/lam.3.22-23.NIV

Verse 2

 I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.  So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me. What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord

Verse 1

 Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—of whom I am the worst. But for that very reason I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display his immense patience as an example for those who would believe in him and receive eternal life. Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory for ever and ever. Amen. 1 Timothy 1:15‭-‬17 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/1ti.1.15-17.NIV

Day 9 of Restoration

  Day 9: Sunday Morning  “I done been through this a time or two I keep going back  But now I’m finally through I’m like “if I was God I’d be tired of you” But He be open arms Like He desire you I’m like “wow” Smokin’, sippin’, slippin’ Thought I lost my grip and wow Pulled me back and told me I'm forgiven” Why do I do the things I don’t want to do? This question has been asked for thousands of years. You aren’t the first one to ask it. And you aren’t the first one to struggle through it.  But every time you wake up, you get another chance. And the beauty of our God is that His mercy is unending. While we tire of making the same mistakes over and over again and it’s difficult for us to forgive our loved ones time and time again, God’s patience is not like ours. Scripture says God’s patience is immense. Not just “patient,” or even “large patience” but  immense . His mercies are new every morning. What a reason to praise God. The eternal, immortal, invisible and only God.   Prayer: G

Verse 2

 But you, brothers and sisters, are not in darkness so that this day should surprise you like a thief. You are all children of the light and children of the day. We do not belong to the night or to the darkness. So then, let us not be like others, who are asleep, but let us be awake and sober. For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk, get drunk at night. But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, putting on faith and love as a breastplate, and the hope of salvation as a helmet. For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ. He died for us so that, whether we are awake or asleep, we may live together with him. Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing. 1 Thessalonians 5:4‭-‬11 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/1th.5.4-11.NIV

Verse 1

 Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior. But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation— Colossians 1:21‭-‬22 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/col.1.21-22.NIV

Day 8 of Restoration

  Day 8: Saturday Night “I know you thought you were alive But you was dreaming all this time Yeah So wake up wake up wake up” Have you ever noticed that you don’t know you were asleep until you wake up? When you trust Jesus, you realize that you’ve been asleep the whole time, but in him you are awake and alive.  When you are awake, you are able to understand that the things of the world won’t give you the satisfaction you actually need. You’re able to see that the awards and spotlight don’t give off the same glow and that you can measure your success in Jesus, who died on the cross for you.  So go out today knowing that you belong to the day and not the night, you are not asleep but alive in Christ. Prayer: God thank You for waking me up today. I pray You help me see things the way You see them and guide me in understanding I don’t need to measure success the way the world does.

Verse 2

 I waited patiently for the Lord ; he turned to me and heard my cry.  He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand.  He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see and fear the Lord and put their trust in him.  Blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord , who does not look to the proud, to those who turn aside to false gods.  Many, Lord my God, are the wonders you have done, the things you planned for us. None can compare with you; were I to speak and tell of your deeds, they would be too many to declare. Psalms 40:1‭-‬5 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/psa.40.1-5.NIV

Verse 1

 He is my loving God and my fortress, my stronghold and my deliverer, my shield, in whom I take refuge, who subdues peoples under me.   Lord , what are human beings that you care for them, mere mortals that you think of them?  They are like a breath; their days are like a fleeting shadow.  Part your heavens, Lord , and come down; touch the mountains, so that they smoke.  Send forth lightning and scatter the enemy; shoot your arrows and rout them.  Reach down your hand from on high; deliver me and rescue me from the mighty waters, from the hands of foreigners  whose mouths are full of lies, whose right hands are deceitful. Psalms 144:2‭-‬8 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/psa.144.2-8.NIV

Day 7 of Restoration

  Day 7: Drown “I’m hoping Cause this the only thing that keeps me sober I feel like I’m losing it And what am I doing here I need you to bail me out I need you to pull me in” Our God is the same yesterday, today, and forever. He is our constant. Our rock. The beautiful thing about trials is that it is in the midst of suffering, our foundations are tested and we see what remains standing. In the Psalms, we see the vulnerability of David–a King, who despite his victories and mighty confidence, still faced defeat and trials. He knew what it felt like to have no control over his circumstances and feel surrounded by his enemies. But he also knew exactly who to turn to as his source of hope, as his mighty rock, and as his firm foundation. May we also not forget that our King Jesus, also knew what it was like to walk in the midst of a broken world, facing temptations, and needing his own bail-out. But he defeated death so we wouldn’t have to. He bailed us out.  This year has come with an abu