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Showing posts from March, 2021

Verse

 Sets 1, 4 with "-" are Written in Red  He saw at the water’s edge two boats, left there by the fishermen, who were washing their nets. He got into one of the boats, the one belonging to Simon, and asked him to put out a little from shore. Then he sat down and taught the people from the boat.  When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.”  Simon answered, “Master, we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything. But because you say so, I will let down the nets.”  When they had done so, they caught such a large number of fish that their nets began to break. So they signaled their partners in the other boat to come and help them, and they came and filled both boats so full that they began to sink.  When Simon Peter saw this, he fell at Jesus’ knees and said, “Go away from me, Lord; I am a sinful man!” For he and all his companions were astonished at the catch of fish they had taken, and so were James and J

The Characters of Easter (Day 4)

  Jesus became more familiar with Peter, staying in his home (Luke 4:38) and healing his mother-in-law of a fever, no small malady in a time before pain relievers, antibiotics, and vaccines. Peter’s home became a gathering place of sorts as word spread throughout Capernaum, and others made their way to his home, the desperate seeking healing and hope from this new rabbi.  For Peter, this was completely new. In Peter’s time the blind never saw. The lame never walked. The demons never left.  One day, after Peter returns from an unsuccessful overnight fishing trip, Jesus appears again on the beach and crowds began to form, eager to listen to His teaching. So Jesus asked the brothers to lend their boat to use as a place to sit and teach the gathering crowds. The brothers’ grimy and smelly boat—now a stage for the Son of God. And when the crowd dispersed, Jesus urged the men to give the nets another chance.  The Scripture suggests this tip rankled Peter, and we know why. When an amateur wei

Verse 2

 “Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves.  By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles?  Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit.  A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit.  Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.  Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them. Matthew 7:15‭-‬20 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/mat.7.15-20.NIV

Verse 1

 This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples. John 15:8 NIV https://john.bible/john-15-8

The Other 6 (Day 40) Last Day

  Inviting People to Church // Section 2: Talking to Your Friends about Jesus The first disciples wouldn’t have really been considered disciples if they hadn’t actually done what Jesus told them to do with the knowledge they had. In the same way, we must show that we are His disciples by ‘bearing fruit’ which simply means reproducing the salvation we have in other people by bringing them into God’s presence and allowing Him to change them. Saved people save people! Practical Steps: Congratulations on making it through this 40-day Journey! Don’t let this be the end – hopefully you’ve established a type of routine in your morning to include this devotional.

Verse

 Verses 15,17-19 are Written in Red  “But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?” Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.” Jesus replied, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by flesh and blood, but by my Father in heaven. And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.” Matthew 16:15‭-‬19 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/mat.16.15-19.NIV

The Characters of Easter (Day 3)

  I think a lot about those simple words Andrew said that day.   We have found Him . I think of my own father, who heard these words from my aunt who watched when an evangelist named Billy Graham spoke them to her on TV. My father walked that aisle in 1971 in Chicago and changed the trajectory of his troubled family. I’m here today, writing about Easter, because my father heard those words and said them to a young Jewish girl who would become his wife, a mother who would tell her son one day:   We have found Him.  John preached. Andrew listened. John pointed to Jesus. Andrew  found.  This is how the gospel reaches you and it reaches me. God sends someone to us: a voice on the radio, a discarded tract, a persistent friend.  Simon didn’t know it, but his life story was being written before he was born. It began miles away in tiny Bethlehem thirty years earlier, when an impoverished carpenter and his wife pounded on the doors of an inn, begging for a place to give birth to their baby. Sim

Verse 2

 Now about food sacrificed to idols: We know that “We all possess knowledge.” But knowledge puffs up while love builds up. 1 Corinthians 8:1 NIV https://1corinthians.bible/1-corinthians-8-1

Verse 1

 Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. Matthew 5:15 NIV https://matthew.bible/matthew-5-15

The Other 6 (Day 39)

  Inviting People to Church // Section 2: Talking to Your Friends about Jesus Because we’ve been given this incredible gift of salvation – a light – we have an obligation to share it with others! It makes no sense to put a light under a bowl, just like it makes no sense for us to experience God and not share it with others. That's what makes us 'spiritually fat' and keeps the focus on ourselves. We continue to retain 'spiritual information' but we never do anything with it. It's like knowing a lot about working out but only ever sitting on the couch: that knowledge doesn't help you get fit at all. You have to do something with it. Practical Steps: Pray that God opens up at least one conversation this week where you can share your faith. Be very observant in your conversations, looking for any chance to tie in your relationship with God.

Verse

 The 2,4,6 set of "-" are Written in Red.  When he saw Jesus passing by, he said, “Look, the Lamb of God!”  When the two disciples heard him say this, they followed Jesus. Turning around, Jesus saw them following and asked, “What do you want?” They said, “Rabbi” (which means “Teacher”), “where are you staying?”   “Come,” he replied, “and you will see.” So they went and saw where he was staying, and they spent that day with him. It was about four in the afternoon.  Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, was one of the two who heard what John had said and who had followed Jesus. The first thing Andrew did was to find his brother Simon and tell him, “We have found the Messiah” (that is, the Christ). And he brought him to Jesus. Jesus looked at him and said, “You are Simon son of John. You will be called Cephas” (which, when translated, is Peter ). John 1:36‭-‬42 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/jhn.1.36-42.NIV

The Characters of Easter (Day 2)

     The first encounter between Jesus and Peter seems to have been brokered by Simon’s brother Andrew. He was intrigued with another itinerant teacher, the rogue prophet named John. Some called him “the baptizer” for his controversial practice of calling Jewish people to a new level of repentance and cleansing, beyond the cold rituals. John was unlike the staid rabbis in the synagogue. A wild-eyed nomad who declared the kingdom of heaven had come near, John insisted the people of God must prepare themselves. While many shrugged off John’s message, Andrew listened. And the words cut straight to his heart. John didn’t speak of himself, but of another whom God was sending, with a winnowing fork, dividing true believers from pretenders.  Galileans were ready for messages about God’s coming kingdom, especially at a time when Israel keenly felt the burden of being a subject people. But hope for a better future was shadowed by a palpable sense of despair, a cynicism hardened by crushing Roma

Verse

 But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, 1 Peter 3:15 NIV https://1peter.bible/1-peter-3-15

The Other 6 (Day 38)

Inviting People to Church // Section 2: Talking to Your Friends about Jesus When we tell others about Jesus, we ought to have a reason for our faith, according to Peter. Here is the reason: Jesus changed our lives, our marriages, and our future generations with His incredible love, and He can for them too! As Peter explains, we don’t rub it in their face and be obnoxious about it, but we do present who we were before Jesus and who we are now. Practical Steps: Take a few minutes this morning to ‘rehearse’ what your story has been – who were you before Jesus, what happened, and who are you now. Make it as clear and concise as possible.

Verse

 Both sets of "-", are Written in Red.  As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.” At once they left their nets and followed him. Going on from there, he saw two other brothers, James son of Zebedee and his brother John. They were in a boat with their father Zebedee, preparing their nets. Jesus called them, and immediately they left the boat and their father and followed him. Matthew 4:18‭-‬22 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/mat.4.18-22.NIV

New Plan: Characters of Easter (Day 1)

  When Jesus met Simon, he wasn’t the Peter we know, the saint after whom children and churches and cities are named. He was Simon and he wasn’t exactly looking for Jesus. Instead, he was busy plying his trade as a commercial fisherman on the shores of Lake Gennesaret. Simon and his brother Andrew were part of a fishing collective with another set of brothers, James and John. The Galilee shores were all the brothers knew, having grown up in Bethsaida, on the northwest shore.  By all accounts, Simon was thriving in Capernaum, making a living bringing fish to the market to be sold locally or shipped to Damascus via the Roman highway and exported to ports across the Roman Empire along the Mediterranean. He owned a home and was married (Luke 4:38–39). It doesn’t seem like Simon was either rich or poor but managing a decent life. Like most of us: an ordinary person in an ordinary place in what, he assumed, was an ordinary time.  Jesus spent much of His ministry in Galilee. These were His pe

Verse 2

 We love because he first loved us. 1 John 4:19 NIV https://1john.bible/1-john-4-19

Verse 1

 As for us, we cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard.” Acts 4:20 NIV https://acts.bible/acts-4-20

The Other 6 (Day 37)

  Inviting People to Church // Section 2: Talking to Your Friends about Jesus Like it was for the early church, this ought to be our natural reaction. Basically they’re saying, ‘We don’t know about you, but we can’t help but spread our faith – it’s too great!’ As it’s been said – how much do you actually have to hate a person not to tell them about Jesus if you truly believe in Heaven and Hell? We may make arguments that we're afraid of what they'll think about us or what they'll say but the truth is, that's selfishness talking. When we meet Jesus we realize that the world doesn't revolve around us and that selfishness was part of what ruined our life in the first place. Let's take our eyes off of ourselves and care deeply for those in our lives that are far from God. Practical Steps: Ask that God would put this type of spirit deep in your soul – an 'I can’t help but tell' spirit.

Verse 2

 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” Acts 1:8 NIV https://acts.bible/acts-1-8

Verse 1

 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” Matthew 28:19‭-‬20 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/mat.28.19-20.NIV

The Other 6 (Day 36)

  Inviting People to Church // Section 2: Talking to Your Friends about Jesus Talking to Your Friends about Jesus Plain and simple, here is our job – make disciples from all nations, baptizing them into the faith, and teaching them about Jesus. He established the church as the primary form of making disciples, and our friends and family most likely will not experience God unless they are invited to experience Him. This is why we do church, and this is why we exist. When we get wrapped up in everything else that surrounds the 'church culture' we've lost the point. Instead of arguing about what's best for us at church and what we want, let's focus our efforts on those people who haven't even experienced God's love yet! Practical Steps: Invite someone to church this week.

Sorry

 Sorry I didn't post day 36 of the Other 6 today. I was busy at a women's retreat. I will post later today.

Verse 2

 We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God. 2 Corinthians 5:20 NIV https://2corinthians.bible/2-corinthians-5-20

Verse 1

 In everything set them an example by doing what is good. In your teaching show integrity, seriousness and soundness of speech that cannot be condemned, so that those who oppose you may be ashamed because they have nothing bad to say about us. Titus 2:7‭-‬8 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/tit.2.7-8.NIV

The Other 6 (Day 35)

  Inviting People to Church // Section 1: Earning the Right to Talk This passage basically sums it all up. We earn the right to be heard because those who oppose us have nothing bad to say about us. That’s not to mean that we appear perfect or that we’re unwilling to admit we’re not perfect. It simply means that we have integrity and with every decision we understand that our choice will not only affect us, but our Church and those around us who don’t know Jesus. For their sake, we strive for right-standing with men. Like we've said before, we may be the only representation of God in their lives. Practical Steps: Pray for a few minutes this morning for the first three people that pop into your head when you think about people who need Jesus. Ask that God would use your integrity to reach their hearts and point them towards Jesus.

Verse 2

 Where Jesus answers is Written in Red.  The next day Jesus decided to leave for Galilee. Finding Philip, he said to him, “Follow me.”  Philip, like Andrew and Peter, was from the town of Bethsaida. Philip found Nathanael and told him, “We have found the one Moses wrote about in the Law, and about whom the prophets also wrote—Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.”  “Nazareth! Can anything good come from there?” Nathanael asked. “Come and see,” said Philip.  When Jesus saw Nathanael approaching, he said of him, “Here truly is an Israelite in whom there is no deceit.”  “How do you know me?” Nathanael asked. Jesus answered, “I saw you while you were still under the fig tree before Philip called you.”  Then Nathanael declared, “Rabbi, you are the Son of God; you are the king of Israel.”  Jesus said, “You believe  because I told you I saw you under the fig tree. You will see greater things than that.”  He then added, “Very truly I tell you,  you  will see ‘heaven open, and the angels of God

Verse 1

 Many curry favor with a ruler, and everyone is the friend of one who gives gifts. Proverbs 19:6 NIV https://proverbs.bible/proverbs-19-6

The Other 6 (Day 34)

  Inviting People to Church // Section 1: Earning the Right to Talk Churches often joke about bribing friends to come to church, but there’s some Biblical merit to the idea here. It applies in many areas. Looking to make friends? Be a giver of gifts and someone who blesses people and you won’t be without friends for long. Bribing someone won’t keep him or her at church, but it might get them there to experience God, and He will keep them there. Our job is simply to get them into God’s presence and allow them to make a decision: nothing more and nothing less. We ask them to 'come and see' what God has done and what He could do in their life. Practical Steps: Bribe someone with coffee or lunch this week in exchange for coming to church this Sunday.

Verse 2

 Suppose a brother or a sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead. James 2:15‭-‬17 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/jas.2.15-17.NIV

Verse 1

 and to make it your ambition to lead a quiet life: You should mind your own business and work with your hands, just as we told you, so that your daily life may win the respect of outsiders and so that you will not be dependent on anybody. 1 Thessalonians 4:11‭-‬12 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/1th.4.11-12.NIV

The Other 6 (Day 33)

  Inviting People to Church // Section 1: Earning the Right to Talk Too often we forget passages like this – we don’t strive to be independent so we can look down on others, not provide help for them, or not seek help ourselves. We do so that we can be in a position to help others and earn their respect so that we have the chance to offer them the Great News we have. No one honors a lazy person. We earn respect when we show that we are hard workers that never quit. Be a hard worker. Practical Steps: Think about your past week – what were ways that you lived according to this passage? What were some ways you could’ve improved? How can your next week be different?

Verse

 Now Joseph had been taken down to Egypt. Potiphar, an Egyptian who was one of Pharaoh’s officials, the captain of the guard, bought him from the Ishmaelites who had taken him there. The Lord was with Joseph so that he prospered, and he lived in the house of his Egyptian master. When his master saw that the Lord was with him and that the Lord gave him success in everything he did, Joseph found favor in his eyes and became his attendant. Potiphar put him in charge of his household, and he entrusted to his care everything he owned. From the time he put him in charge of his household and of all that he owned, the Lord blessed the household of the Egyptian because of Joseph. The blessing of the Lord was on everything Potiphar had, both in the house and in the field. So Potiphar left everything he had in Joseph’s care; with Joseph in charge, he did not concern himself with anything except the food he ate. Now Joseph was well-built and handsome, and after a while his master’s wife took noti

The Other 6 (Day 32)

  Inviting People to Church // Section 1: Earning the Right to Talk Joseph manages to keep his integrity despite lies, temptation, and the worst of situations you could imagine. Because of this, no one had anything bad that was legitimate to say about Joseph and God honored him because of that. If we maintain our character in the hard times, God will be sure we are restored so that we can be examples for those around us. This is easier said than done when you're in the thick of a difficult situation: resolve AHEAD of time that you'll be a person of Godly character. Practical Steps: Read the Joseph story and compare how God came through for Joseph with how God could come through for you if you choose to have integrity.

Road to the Cross (Day 11) Last Day

  On the Road to Emmaus Two of them were going to a village named Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem. (Luke 24:13) Cleopas and his friend—or is it his wife?—turned to one another and exclaimed, “Did not our hearts burn within us while he talked to us on the road, while he opened to us the Scriptures?” But back on the road, so far as we readers know, and I think so far as two disciples were aware, their hearts were cold. Nowhere do we get any indication, as they were walking along with this mysterious stranger, that their hearts burned. Only later on, when they looked back, did they realize that their hearts burned. Were the two disciples remembering falsely? Were they revising the past? Granted, sometimes we view our yesterdays through rose-colored glasses. But I have found that it is only in looking back that you see how God was at work in your life. You never realize that at the time. Do you think that when the children of Israel wandered through the wilderness they said to one

Verse 3

 But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. Luke 6:35 NIV https://luke.bible/luke-6-35

Verse 2

 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you. Ephesians 4:32 NIV https://ephesians.bible/ephesians-4-32

Verse 1

 For we are taking pains to do what is right, not only in the eyes of the Lord but also in the eyes of man. 2 Corinthians 8:21 NIV https://2corinthians.bible/2-corinthians-8-21

The Other 6 (Day 31)

  Inviting People to Church // Section 1: Earning the Right to Talk If we follow God, naturally we will be doing what is right (for the most part) in the eyes of man. This is because God’s truth about good conduct is planted in every person that He’s created and there’s a general consensus about what morality looks like. This passage is simply warning us that we can’t just follow God, but be jerks to those around us, cheat others, or not follow basic laws that are recognized by men. We strive to be right in the eyes of the Lord, but also in the eyes of man. Certainly we don't concede to any type of worldly morality that might go against what God has for us, but when it comes to the things of the world that are considered kind, good, hospitable, etc. we should be at the forefront. Practical Steps: Pray that God opens your eyes to any areas of your life where you’re saying you’re a Christian, but aren’t living a life that reflects it.

End of verse

 Then they remembered his words.  When they came back from the tomb, they told all these things to the Eleven and to all the others. Luke 24:8‭-‬9 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/luk.24.8-9.NIV

Verse continue

 ‘The Son of Man must be delivered over to the hands of sinners, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.’ ” Luke 24:7 NIV https://luke.bible/luke-24-7

1st part of verse

 On the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb. They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. While they were wondering about this, suddenly two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them. In their fright the women bowed down with their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, “Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee: Luke 24:1‭-‬6 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/luk.24.1-6.NIV

Road to the Cross (Day 10)

  He Is Risen He is not here, but has risen. (Luke 24:6) I have bad news and good news. First, the bad news: “There is . . . a time to die” (Ecclesiastes 3:1-2). Death is woven into the fabric of creation. Everything in this life is moving toward dissolution. Every mortal will die. All our relationships are terminal. One hundred percent of marriages come to an end. “There is a time to die.” That’s the bad news. Now the good news: “Why do you seek the living among the dead? He is not here, but has risen” (Luke 24:5-6). In one sense, new life in Christ begins when we join him in glory. But in another sense, new life in Christ begins right now, today, as we stop clinging to the old life, which we cannot keep, and we embrace a new life in Jesus, which we cannot lose. Stop looking for the living among the dead. Stop clinging to the old life, to the things that will pass away. Stop obsessing over the right career move. Stop fretting about whether interest rates are going up or down. Stop fan

Verse 2

 When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” John 8:12 NIV https://john.bible/john-8-12

Verse 1

 In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven. Matthew 5:16 NIV https://matthew.bible/matthew-5-16

The Other 6 (Day 30)

  Inviting People to Church // Section 1: Earning the Right to Talk Here we’re presented with the same idea, with a slight twist. We are to have good deeds that point others to God’s glory. However, because Matthew is telling his audience to let their light shine, it also means that we can have a light but NOT let it shine. In that case, we are useless – what good is a light that doesn’t shine? In the same way, what practical good are we if we do not point others to Jesus from our changed lives? This is what keeps many people from believing in Christ: hypocrisy. Don't be the reason someone says no to coming to church or trying to follow Christ. Practical Steps: Pray that God presents opportunities to do good and to demonstrate a changed life for those around you and that He’s glorified by your actions, thoughts, and motives.

Verse continue

 Jesus answered him, “Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise.” Luke 23:43 NIV https://luke.bible/luke-23-43

1st part of verse

 One of the criminals who hung there hurled insults at him: “Aren’t you the Messiah? Save yourself and us!”  But the other criminal rebuked him. “Don’t you fear God,” he said, “since you are under the same sentence? We are punished justly, for we are getting what our deeds deserve. But this man has done nothing wrong.”  Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom. ” Luke 23:39‭-‬42 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/luk.23.39-42.NIV

Road to the Cross (Day 9)

  Death on a Friday Afternoon Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in paradise. (Luke 23:43) “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom” (Luke 23:42). This is the only instance in any of the Gospels where someone addresses Jesus simply by name. In all other instances it is “Jesus, the Son of God” or “Jesus, Son of David” or “Jesus, Son of the Most High God” or something like that. The first person to be so familiar with Jesus is the last person to speak to him, and he is a criminal, of all things. What odd company to be in such close proximity to the divine. Jesus responded, “Today you will be with me in paradise.” Today. Not someday. Not in the fullness of time. Today. That’s some promise. How about that—the first one home is a crook. The remarkable thing about the penitent thief is that, even as he hung dying on the cross, he thought Jesus had a future. The thief wanted his own future to be wherever Jesus’ future was, and he had the audacity to ask for that: “Jesus

Verse 2

 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you. Philippians 4:8‭-‬9 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/php.4.8-9.NIV

Verse 1

 Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day he visits us. 1 Peter 2:12 NIV https://1peter.bible/1-peter-2-12

The Other 6 (Day 29)

  Inviting People to Church // Section 1: Earning the Right to Talk Maybe the most powerful tool we have for witnessing is this ‘earning the right to talk.’ Peter explains it briefly here – we ought to live lives that are so changed by God that, even though they may hate you, if they had to try to come up with something terrible about you, all they’re met with is your good deeds and how that points to God. Whether we like it or not, we affect God’s reputation amongst men. Represent God well. Practical Steps: With every action today, consider how it affects God’s reputation – we are always on display to those who don’t know Jesus.

Verse

 (Barabbas had been thrown into prison for an insurrection in the city, and for murder.)  Wanting to release Jesus, Pilate appealed to them again. But they kept shouting, “Crucify him! Crucify him!”  For the third time he spoke to them: “Why? What crime has this man committed? I have found in him no grounds for the death penalty. Therefore I will have him punished and then release him.”  But with loud shouts they insistently demanded that he be crucified, and their shouts prevailed. So Pilate decided to grant their demand. He released the man who had been thrown into prison for insurrection and murder, the one they asked for, and surrendered Jesus to their will. Luke 23:19‭-‬25 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/luk.23.19-25.NIV

Road to the Cross (Day 8)

  Release to Us Barabbas But they all cried out together, “Away with this man, and release to us Barabbas.” (Luke 23:18) Did Barabbas witness the crucifixion? Scripture doesn’t say, but I wonder. If you knew someone had taken your place on the cross, and the execution was happening, just a stone’s throw outside the city wall, wouldn’t you go and see? I wonder if Barabbas stood at a distance, surveying the three crosses, studying the man in the middle, hanging up there between heaven and earth, as though neither one wanted him. I wonder if the truth slowly percolated into Barabbas that he was witnessing his own crucifixion. That was his cross. Those were his nails. We sing hymns about Jesus dying in our place, but for Barabbas that was literally true. Whatever became of Barabbas? Nobody knows. In the old 1961 film  Barabbas , Barabbas becomes a Christian in the end. But that’s Hollywood, not Scripture. Whatever his outcome, Barabbas may have been the first person ever to glimpse a great

Verse 2

 Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. Colossians 3:2 NIV https://colossians.bible/colossians-3-2

Verse 1

 Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. Romans 12:1‭-‬2 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/rom.12.1-2.NIV

The Other 6 (Day 28)

  Personal Time with God // Section 2: Worship Here we’re presented with a different form of worship – it’s by focusing our mind on God’s Word and principles and refusing to conform to the ideas that our culture tells us will bring us freedom. One example is given in the first verse: instead of believing that sex with whoever and whenever is healthy, we offer our bodies as living sacrifices to God, believing that His way of doing relationships will ultimately be best for us. Worship includes our obedience to God's Word, even when it make not make sense to us at first. It's trusting that God knows best. Practical Steps: To make it real practical, if you’re currently having sex with someone or acting on any other harmful lie our culture feeds us, stop and look to God’s Word to see how God wants you to handle that situation. Try carving out enough time in your day to read two chapters of the Bible a day, in order to focus your mind and not believe the lies the devil sells us.

Verse continue

 They began to question among themselves which of them it might be who would do this. Luke 22:23 NIV https://luke.bible/luke-22-23

1st part of the verse

 But the hand of him who is going to betray me is with mine on the table. The Son of Man will go as it has been decreed. But woe to that man who betrays him!” Luke 22:21‭-‬22 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/luk.22.21-22.NIV

Road to the Cross (Day 7)

  Who Is Responsible? For the Son of Man goes as it has been determined, but woe to that man by whom he is betrayed! (Luke 22:22) On the one hand, Judas’ betrayal of Jesus is the inevitable fulfillment of God’s own plan. At the Last Supper, Jesus says, “For the Son of Man goes as it has been determined.” Jesus’ betrayal and death was no random accident; it was part of the “definite plan and foreknowledge of God” (Acts 2:23). But on the other hand, Judas is responsible for his treachery: “Woe to that man by whom he is betrayed!” Do you see the problem? If the deed is inevitable, then how can Judas be responsible for it? And if Judas is responsible for it, then how can it be inevitable? How responsible are we for our actions? To some degree, surely, we are shaped by factors beyond our control: heredity, genetics, our upbringing. But I wince to hear people trace their sins to every door but their own, as though they were victims of fate. As Aristotle said with impeccable logic, “That whic

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

 About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them. Suddenly there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the prison were shaken. At once all the prison doors flew open, and everyone’s chains came loose. Acts 16:25‭-‬26 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/act.16.25-26.NIV

The Other 6 (Day 27)

  Personal Time with God // Section 2: Worship Potentially the most powerful example of the sheer influence that our praise can have – Paul and Silas are at their worst and yet they still find God’s praise on their lips. All of the sudden, God hears their prayers and the prison is shaken by an earthquake. Some of us may need a similar shake-up in our lives and this story is here to encourage us. This is how to praise in the midst of hard times – dig your heels in and look to heaven. Praise isn't just meant for the times in our lives when everything is going well. It may be even MORE powerful when nothing seems to be working out and you're at the end of your rope. Practical Steps: Read the rest of this chapter from verse 26 to the end and see how the impact of their praise affected people besides just Paul and Silas!

Verse

 They brought it to Jesus, threw their cloaks on the colt and put Jesus on it. As he went along, people spread their cloaks on the road.  When he came near the place where the road goes down the Mount of Olives, the whole crowd of disciples began joyfully to praise God in loud voices for all the miracles they had seen:  “Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!” “Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!” Luke 19:35‭-‬38 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/luk.19.35-38.NIV

Road to the Cross (Day 6)

  A Long Journey Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord! (Luke 19:38) I rode a donkey, once, in Israel. It cost me 10 shekels. Two minutes into the ride I would have gladly paid another 10 shekels to get off the donkey. The animal had a salient, sharp-edged spine that made riding a decidedly unpleasant experience. It was the longest ride of my life. How long was Jesus’ Palm Sunday ride? How far does he travel on his little donkey? In one sense, not far at all. The Palm Sunday parade started on the Mount of Olives, wound down into the Kidron Valley, and then up the hill to the gates of Jerusalem—about a mile. Not very far. But in another sense, Jesus had come a long way. Palm Sunday, remember, was not an isolated incident. It was the climax of a long journey that began months earlier when, Luke says, “he set his face to go to Jerusalem” (9:51). There were many obstacles along the way, and much opposition. God had a plan, and by enduring all the difficulties along the way,

Verse 2

 Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. Hebrews 13:8 NIV https://hebrews.bible/hebrews-13-8

Verse 1

 Praise the Lord . Praise the Lord , my soul.  I will praise the Lord all my life; I will sing praise to my God as long as I live.  Do not put your trust in princes, in human beings, who cannot save.  When their spirit departs, they return to the ground; on that very day their plans come to nothing.  Blessed are those whose help is the God of Jacob, whose hope is in the Lord their God. Psalms 146:1‭-‬5 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/psa.146.1-5.NIV

The Other 6 (Day 26)

  Personal Time with God // Section 2: Worship This Psalm is a great example of where our praise ought to take us – that no one else is worthy of our trust but God. Reflecting on God’s greatness and the wickedness and mortality of man causes us to put our trust back in God, the only one who can truly offer us hope. This is what separates us from the world: we've reached a point where we realize what terrible condition mankind is in, but we also realize how vast and great God's love is. His faithfulness shines in a dark world filled with selfishness and hurt. Practical Steps: Make this Psalm your prayer this morning and remind your souls that God is the only one who can give us true hope.

Verse

 The 1st set of "-" is Written in Red.  As he approached Bethphage and Bethany at the hill called the Mount of Olives, he sent two of his disciples, saying to them, “Go to the village ahead of you, and as you enter it, you will find a colt tied there, which no one has ever ridden. Untie it and bring it here.  If anyone asks you, ‘Why are you untying it?’ say, ‘The Lord needs it.’ ”  Those who were sent ahead went and found it just as he had told them. As they were untying the colt, its owners asked them, “Why are you untying the colt?”  They replied, “The Lord needs it.” Luke 19:29‭-‬34 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/luk.19.29-34.NIV

Road to the Cross (Day 5)

  Secret Disciples Go into the village in front of you, where on entering you will find a colt tied. (Luke 19:30) Imagine I said to you, “Go to the town up ahead, and you will find there, parked at the side of the road, a Dodge Colt automobile. The key is in the ignition. Bring the car back here to me. And if the owners ask what you are doing, just tell them that I need it.” Wouldn’t you ask a few questions? Whose car is this? Are they expecting me? How will they know that you sent me? But the disciples go off on this strange errand with no questions at all. Whose colt is this? Who are these unnamed owners who so readily give up their own transportation so that Jesus can ride? Jesus had many public followers. But we suspect Jesus also had secret disciples, a network of believers who loved and supported him privately, quietly. People like Joseph of Arimathea, “who was a disciple of Jesus, but secretly for fear of the Jews” (John 19:38). Sometimes, on the road to Jerusalem, we meet peopl

Verse 2

 As the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without deeds is dead. James 2:26 NIV https://james.bible/james-2-26

Verse 1

 Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise—the fruit of lips that openly profess his name. And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased. Hebrews 13:15‭-‬16 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/heb.13.15-16.NIV

The Other 6 (Day 25)

  Personal Time with God // Section 2: Worship Worship and time with God is so powerful that it ought to affect our actions for the rest of the day. Our author here is saying that the time with God is incredibly important – but don’t forget that it needs to affect the rest of our day! In fact, through our actions we actually openly profess his name and spread His glory. There's nothing worse than a Christian who spends lots of 'time with God' then cuts everyone off in traffic, curses at their coworkers behind their back, and is a lazy employee. Our worship should empower us to live our lives different from the rest of the world. Practical Steps: After having some time in worship, spend the day looking for opportunities throughout the day to do good and to share with others.

Rest of the verse

 “Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Doesn’t he leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it?  And when he finds it, he joyfully puts it on his shoulders  and goes home. Then he calls his friends and neighbors together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost sheep.’  I tell you that in the same way there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent. Luke 15:4‭-‬7 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/luk.15.4-7.NIV

1st part of the verse

 Now the tax collectors and sinners were all gathering around to hear Jesus. But the Pharisees and the teachers of the law muttered, “This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.”  Then Jesus told them this parable: Luke 15:1‭-‬3 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/luk.15.1-3.NIV

Road to the Cross (Day 4)

  Lost and Found Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep that was lost. (Luke 15:6) I have this vague, gossamer memory of getting lost when I was a small child. The memory is fragile and wispy, but I’m pretty sure I’m not imagining it. It really happened. I was in a store, and there were high counters that you couldn’t see over, and I couldn’t find my mother. I was lost. And I had that sick, frightened feeling that only the lost can understand. But then a voice said, “There you are!” And my mother swept me up in her arms, and I was found. I felt so deeply relieved, and my heart fairly ached with happiness. Maybe that’s why I’ve always been drawn to Luke 15, which is a succession of lost and found stories—a lost sheep, a lost coin, and a lost son. On the road to Jerusalem, the tax collectors and sinners crowded around Jesus and hung on his words. No preacher ever had a more attentive audience. These were lost people—at least in the eyes of the religious establishment. They were the l

Verse 2

 Blessed are the pure in heart,  for they will see God. Matthew 5:8 NIV https://matthew.bible/matthew-5-8

Verse 1

 Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. Colossians 3:16 NIV https://colossians.bible/colossians-3-16

The Other 6 (Day 24)

  Personal Time with God // Section 2: Worship Again, we’re presented with more passages about the idea of praising God through songs and singing. The very last phrase is important to catch: we are to sing to God with gratitude in our hearts. Just like we can do many things for God or for others out of simple routine and it not really mean anything to us, we can sing to God without having gratitude and thanksgiving in our hearts. As we enter worship this week, let’s check our hearts and make sure they’re filled with gratitude. Worship starts in the heart and spreads to the rest of our lives. Practical Steps: Before you begin your day, spend some time listening to some worship music, and then after, pray for God to fill your heart with gratitude for the day.

Verse continue

 Jesus replied, “Man, who appointed me a judge or an arbiter between you?” Then he said to them, “Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; life does not consist in an abundance of possessions.” And he told them this parable: “The ground of a certain rich man yielded an abundant harvest. He thought to himself, ‘What shall I do? I have no place to store my crops.’ “Then he said, ‘This is what I’ll do. I will tear down my barns and build bigger ones, and there I will store my surplus grain. And I’ll say to myself, “You have plenty of grain laid up for many years. Take life easy; eat, drink and be merry.” ’ “But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your life will be demanded from you. Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself?’ “This is how it will be with whoever stores up things for themselves but is not rich toward God.” Luke 12:14‭-‬21 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/luk.12.14-21.NIV

Part one of the verse

 Someone in the crowd said to him, “Teacher, tell my brother to divide the inheritance with me.” Luke 12:13 NIV https://luke.bible/luke-12-13

Road to the Cross (Day 3)

  On the Move I will tear down my barns and build larger ones. (Luke 12:18) A U.S. Marine called my attention to something I had never thought about. He noted that while the U.S. Army is stationed in forts—Fort Benning, Fort Bragg, and so on—the U.S. Marines are stationed in camps—Camp Lejeune, Camp Pendleton. A fort is stationary. A camp suggests mobility. “Marines are always on the move,” he said. In Luke’s gospel, Jesus is always on the move. In Luke, Jesus’ journey to Jerusalem takes up nine chapters—that’s more than a third of the entire book. In Mark, the Lord’s journey to Jerusalem takes up one chapter. In Matthew, the journey takes two chapters, and in John, three. But in Luke, Jesus is always on the move. In light of Jesus’ movement toward Jerusalem, it is ironic that churches have tended to value settled-ness. Churches crave permanence: bricks and mortar, long-term pastorates, venerable traditions. Like the foolish, greedy man in the parable, we crave bigger barns, more perma

Verse 2

 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 1

 Last 2 sets of "-" are Written in Red . When he came near the place where the road goes down the Mount of Olives, the whole crowd of disciples began joyfully to praise God in loud voices for all the miracles they had seen: “Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!” “Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!” Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to Jesus, “Teacher, rebuke your disciples!” “I tell you,” he replied, “if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out.” Luke 19:37‭-‬40 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/luk.19.37-40.NIV

The Other 6 (Day 23)

  Personal Time with God // Section 2: Worship If you don’t praise God, the stones will cry out. That’s the power of God’s greatness – all creation desires to shout His praises. The simplicity of their cries is comforting. We don’t need to say some intense, theological praise – just simple words as these, ‘Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord, glory in the highest.’ The psalms are just broken people like you and I coming to a perfect God, knowing that we don't compare and yet He loves us anyway. How much more powerful is this love than that of the love songs in our culture? His love is never ending, unconditional, and almost unbelievable - we NEED to sing about it, it's so good! Practical Steps: This morning, spend a few minutes brainstorming all of the praiseworthy characteristics of God, make a list, and then simply read them aloud to God.

Verse continue

 “Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things,  but few things are needed—or indeed only one.  Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.” Luke 10:41‭-‬42 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/luk.10.41-42.NIV

Part 1 of the verse

 As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!” Luke 10:38‭-‬40 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/luk.10.38-40.NIV

Road to the Cross (Day 2)

  A Visit from the Preacher Mary has chosen the good portion, which will not be taken away from her. (Luke 10:42) Mary’s cell phone beeped. She read the text, then turned to her sister, Martha, with a worried look. “The preacher’s in the neighborhood. He’s going to pay us a visit.” Martha said, “What?! And this place is a mess. Quick, you tidy up the house. I’ll get some food cooking in the kitchen.” But Martha had been in the kitchen only a few minutes when there came a knock at the door. It was the preacher, Jesus. Which one are you—Mary or Martha? We tend to identify with one or the other. Martha is a doer. Mary is contemplative. Martha achieves. Mary appreciates. The truth is, nobody is all Martha or all Mary. We are all part Martha, part Mary. Your Martha part is hurried, striving. Your Mary part is thoughtful, meditative. If your Mary part dominates entirely, the basic physical needs of your life will not be met. For most of us, though, the danger of that happening is remote. The

Verse 3

 Praise the Lord . How good it is to sing praises to our God, how pleasant and fitting to praise him! Psalms 147:1 NIV https://psalm.bible/psalm-147-1

Verse 2

 Worship the Lord with gladness; come before him with joyful songs. Psalms 100:2 NIV https://psalm.bible/psalm-100-2

Verse 1

 Praise the Lord . Praise God in his sanctuary; praise him in his mighty heavens.  Praise him for his acts of power; praise him for his surpassing greatness.  Praise him with the sounding of the trumpet, praise him with the harp and lyre,  praise him with timbrel and dancing, praise him with the strings and pipe,  praise him with the clash of cymbals, praise him with resounding cymbals.  Let everything that has breath praise the Lord . Praise the Lord . Psalms 150:1‭-‬6 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/psa.150.1-6.NIV

The Other 6 (Day 22)

  Personal Time with God // Section 2: Worship This passage is fairly straightforward, and it provides some great reasons and ways to praise God. It also provides a Biblical background for why we use instruments and music to praise God – it’s an avenue that He created for us to express our gratitude and love for Him. The passage concludes with the command for all things with breath to praise the Lord – no one has a pass! In fact, if we don't praise God, the Bible says the rocks will cry out. God will be praised one way or another: we get the opportunity to be the ones to have a relationship with Him & glorify Him with our actions, thoughts, and words. Worship isn't just singing - it's a lifestyle. Practical Steps: Take 5-10 minutes, find a place to be alone, and put on a worship song and simply sing it straight to God; lift your eyes to Heaven and with your voice simply acknowledge God’s greatness.

Verse

 As the time approached for him to be taken up to heaven, Jesus resolutely set out for Jerusalem. And he sent messengers on ahead, who went into a Samaritan village to get things ready for him; but the people there did not welcome him, because he was heading for Jerusalem. When the disciples James and John saw this, they asked, “Lord, do you want us to call fire down from heaven to destroy them ?” But Jesus turned and rebuked them. Then he and his disciples went to another village. Luke 9:51‭-‬56 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/luk.9.51-56.NIV

New Plan for Easter - Road to the Cross (Day 1)

 Still have 19 days left of The Other 6, but with Easter coming up, I'm adding this for your reading. The Road to Jerusalem When the days drew near for him to be taken up, he set his face to go to Jerusalem. (Luke 9:51) Have you ever had one of those moments when you realize you’re about to make a decision that will change the course of your life, and nothing will ever be the same again? Getting married. Having a child. Chucking your career and launching your own business. It’s like you’re standing at a crossroads, and the road you choose will define the rest of your life. Robert Frost described the experience in his poem “The Road Not Taken”: I shall be telling this with a sigh / Somewhere ages and ages hence: / Two roads diverged in a wood, and I— / I took the one less traveled by, / And that has made all the difference. Jesus came to a crossroads in his ministry. One road led back to Galilee, a place of relative safety and refuge. The other road ran to Jerusalem, where betrayal

Verse 3

 Rejoice in the Lord and be glad, you righteous; sing, all you who are upright in heart! Psalms 32:11 NIV https://psalm.bible/psalm-32-11

Verse 2

 Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Philippians 4:4 NIV https://philippians.bible/philippians-4-4

Verse 1

 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5:18 NIV https://1thessalonians.bible/1-thessalonians-5-18

The Other 6 (Day 21)

  Personal Time with God // Section 1: Praying It’s great how praying continually is coupled here between rejoicing always and giving thanks in all circumstances. How often are our prayers coupled with complaining and depression because they haven’t been answered yet? We get upset because things aren't working in the timing we thought they would. Instead, we should rejoice and give thanks for those things God has already done for us – this is a powerful change in attitude and view of God as our provider. Prayer changes our perspective which changes our life. Practical Steps: Take 5-10 minutes this morning to simply rejoice by thanking God for all the things God has blessed you with, all the relationships He’s blessed you with, and all of the circumstances that He’s had a hand in providing for you.

Verse 2

 Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. 1 Peter 5:7 NIV https://1peter.bible/1-peter-5-7

Verse 1

 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6‭-‬7 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/php.4.6-7.NIV

The Other 6 (Day 20)

  Personal Time with God // Section 1: Praying Anxiety often comes from a lack of prayer. The author here contrasts prayer with anxiety. Putting the ultimate result of the situation on God, after doing all we can do, will bring us peace because in the end God needs to come through or we’re in trouble. We do our part and leave the rest up to God. This is obviously easier said than done. Really, it's just a discipline that takes time to learn: trusting God and believing that He will do what He said He will do. This is a HUGE part of prayer. Practical Steps: If you’re experiencing anxiety, try asking God for what you need, explaining why you need it in light of His Word, and then thanking Him for all He’s done in the past, confident He will come through.

Verse 1 - Only words between "-" are Written in Red

 Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up. He said: “In a certain town there was a judge who neither feared God nor cared what people thought. And there was a widow in that town who kept coming to him with the plea, ‘Grant me justice against my adversary.’ “For some time he refused. But finally he said to himself, ‘Even though I don’t fear God or care what people think, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will see that she gets justice, so that she won’t eventually come and attack me!’ ” And the Lord said, “Listen to what the unjust judge says. And will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off? I tell you, he will see that they get justice, and quickly. However, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?” Luke 18:1‭-‬8 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/luk.18.1-8.NIV

The Other 6 (Day 19)

  Personal Time with God // Section 1: Praying As we continue to talk about prayer, this is perhaps one of the most interesting passages on prayer and asking God for our needs. These words have some real power. Many times we consider asking God consistently for something is simply a lack of faith that He’ll do it the first time we ask. Often, however, persistence in prayer is for us more than for God – do we really want what we’re asking for? And at the end of the passage, this type of persistent prayer is actually compared to faith! God is a just God – if we continue to present our requests to Him, won’t He certainly see that we get justice? Practical Steps: Over the next few weeks, continually ask God to move in the hearts of those around you who don’t know Jesus.

Verse 3

 You desire but do not have, so you kill. You covet but you cannot get what you want, so you quarrel and fight. You do not have because you do not ask God. James 4:2 NIV https://james.bible/james-4-2

Verse 2

 For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous and his ears are attentive to their prayer, but the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.” 1 Peter 3:12 NIV https://1peter.bible/1-peter-3-12

Verse 1

 Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective. James 5:16 NIV https://james.bible/james-5-16

The Other 6 (Day 18)

  Personal Time with God // Section 1: Praying Notice how this doesn’t say that God MIGHT hear the prayer of a righteous person, or if that person is lucky God MIGHT throw them a bone. It declares without any other condition that a righteous person’s prayer is powerful and effective. In many other scriptures [i.e. James 4:2], the Bible explains that the number one reason that we don’t have what we need is not because God doesn’t want to give it to us, but simply because we don’t ask! Now obviously God knows what we need even without our asking, but He knows that there's something powerful about us presenting our requests. It helps us to ask boldly and it helps us to take ownership of our request. It takes us from a PASSIVE perspective of expecting God to do everything for us to an ACTIVE position of requesting something from our good God. Practical Steps: Today, be courageous and ask God for the things that you need.

Verse 2

 Who will not fear you, Lord, and bring glory to your name? For you alone are holy. All nations will come and worship before you, for your righteous acts have been revealed.” Revelation 15:4 NIV https://revelation.bible/revelation-15-4

Verse 1

 The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth. He fulfills the desires of those who fear him; he hears their cry and saves them. Psalms 145:18‭-‬19 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/psa.145.18-19.NIV

The Other 6 (Day 17)

  Personal Time with God // Section 1: Praying It's really not very complicated - God is near to those who fear Him. But we don't fear him in a way that we beome so scared of Him we can't talk to Him. We fear Him in the way that we end up with a sense of awe and respect for how great He is (and the fact that He still loves us, despite our mess)! Further in this first verse we see that if you want to get close to God, you spend time praying to Him [‘call on him’] and reading His Word [‘call on him in truth’]. In other words, God’s Word helps to inform our prayers – it helps us not just to call on Him, but to call on Him in truth. Our prayers become more powerful when they're informed by the wisdom of God. Practical Steps: Ask God to come near to you as you begin to come near to him by reading His word and talking to Him.

Verse 2

 You may say to yourselves, “These nations are stronger than we are. How can we drive them out?” But do not be afraid of them; remember well what the Lord your God did to Pharaoh and to all Egypt. You saw with your own eyes the great trials, the signs and wonders, the mighty hand and outstretched arm, with which the Lord your God brought you out. The Lord your God will do the same to all the peoples you now fear. Deuteronomy 7:17‭-‬19 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/deu.7.17-19.NIV

Verse 1

 Look to the Lord and his strength; seek his face always. Remember the wonders he has done, his miracles, and the judgments he pronounced, 1 Chronicles 16:11‭-‬12 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/1ch.16.11-12.NIV

The Other 6 (Day 16)

  Personal Time with God // Section 1: Praying This is perhaps the most important part of spending time with & praying to God – the best way to face the struggles and hardships we go through is to look back to other times that He’s come through for us. Then we can simply say, ‘You came through for me then, why wouldn’t You come through for me now?’ Our prayer becomes less about God taking away what's causing us trouble and issues and more about thanking Him for what He's already done for us. This perspective shift helps to put our eyes back on God instead of constantly focusing on our problem. The more we look at our problem the bigger it gets, the more we look to God, the more we realize that He is so much more powerful! Practical Steps: Spend a few minutes and list all of the things God has done for you and how He has come through for you in the past. If you’re having trouble thinking of things, on all of our lists should be that He sent His Son to keep us from eternal se

Verse 2

 In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans. Romans 8:26 NIV https://romans.bible/romans-8-26

Verse 1

 “This, then, is how you should pray:  “ ‘Our Father in heaven,  hallowed be your name,   your kingdom come,  your will be done,  on earth as it is in heaven.   Give us today our daily bread.   And forgive us our debts,  as we also have forgiven our debtors.   And lead us not into temptation,   but deliver us from the evil one.   ’ Matthew 6:9‭-‬13 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/mat.6.9-13.NIV

The Other 6 (Day 15)

  Personal Time with God // Section 1: Praying As we enter this section of the devotional, we'll be talking about what it looks like to pray to God. A great place to start is to see how Jesus modeled prayer for us. He starts out by declaring God's Name sacred - essentially recognizing how great He is. He follows it up by declaring God’s will above all else. He then recognizes that God supplies our needs, even day-to-day, and then requests forgiveness while recognizing that we must also offer it to others! Finally, He asks for protection from the enemy of our souls. Really, Jesus is just talking to God like He would a friend. That's how we begin to pray - just by talking to God & being thankful. Practical Steps: Repeat this powerful prayer a few times this morning and ask God to help us understand what praying looks like and how to honor Him in our prayers.

Verse 2

 “Why do you call me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not do what I say? Luke 6:46 NIV https://luke.bible/luke-6-46

Verse 1

 When your words came, I ate them; they were my joy and my heart’s delight, for I bear your name, Lord God Almighty. Jeremiah 15:16 NIV https://jeremiah.bible/jeremiah-15-16

The Other 6 (Day 14)

  Reading the Bible // Section 2: The Power of the Word of God Jeremiah is so enthusiastic and brought to life by God’s words that he claims they are his ‘joy and heart’s delight.’ Does God’s word bring this reaction from us? If it doesn't, is it because we haven't truly taken the time to study it? Or maybe it's because we don't like reading it because it makes us feel bad about ourselves? It's been said that the Bible is actually quite simple to understand, but we as Christians are quite crafty. We make it as complicated as possible so we can justify doing the things that we want without feeling bad. If we spent half the energy we do trying to justify our sin that actually enslaves us giving God's Word a true effort, we might feel the same way that Jeremiah did about the Bible! Practical Steps: Repeat this verse as if you are Jeremiah before reading God's Word from now on, "God, Your words are my joy and my heart's delight, for I bear Your name, Lo

Verse 2

 As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater,  so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it. Isaiah 55:10‭-‬11 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/isa.55.10-11.NIV

Verse 1

 As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater,  so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it. Isaiah 55:10‭-‬11 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/isa.55.10-11.NIV

The Other 6 (Day 13)

  Reading the Bible // Section 2: The Power of the Word of God God’s word is so powerful that He declares here that it will do what it was sent to do. The awe in this passage is this truth, though: we read earlier that God’s word is sharper than a double-edged sword and divides the Godly from the ungodly. So the purpose of God’s word is to redeem those who accept it, but it will ultimately judge those who reject it; life for some, death for others. We must constantly be on watch of our hearts, making sure they never slip from God’s love into bitterness against Him. And at the same time, we ought to be there for our friends in the midst of their journey. When they look to walk away from God, we should do everything we can to bring them back. Practical Steps: Spend some time this morning praying for those in your life that are currently on the ‘wrong side of the sword’ when it comes to God’s Word and truth. Ask that God soften their hearts in a way that only He can, but that He would als

Verse 4

 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 8:38‭-‬39 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/rom.8.38-39.NIV

Verse 3

 The arrogant cannot stand in your presence. You hate all who do wrong; Psalms 5:5 NIV https://psalm.bible/psalm-5-5

Verse 2

 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 1

 Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’ ” Matthew 4:4 NIV https://matthew.bible/matthew-4-4

The Other 6 (Day 12)