Saturday, March 30, 2013



This Sunday we celebrate and commemorate a day known as Easter; but better described as Resurrection Sunday. Easter is not about a date on the calendar. It is about God in the flesh receiving the first glorified body when He was raised from the dead by the power of the Holy Spirit. When Jesus rose from the dead, everything changed! The time of anticipating fulfillment of the promises and prophesies about Messiah's first coming had past. The time to experience the truth of redemption through the shed blood of Christ and victory over death by His resurrection began.

Christ’s resurrection is the immovable rock on which we stand to boldly proclaim the validity of the gospel message and the power and purpose of our faith!
  • 1 Corinthians 15:13-14 But if there be no resurrection of the dead, then is Christ not risen: 14 And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain.
But, since the time of Adam’s fall, past the moment of resurrection, and until the future restoration of all things; the combined influences of Satan, the world system, and the weakness of our flesh have led to a perversion of the purity of God’s plans and purposes. Therefore, what should be a solemn remembrance and glorious celebration of the greatest happening in human history, has for many become yet another shameful confirmation of the depravity of mankind.

There are essentially three perspectives concerning the resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ:

- The Oblivious: Those who are Unaware
- The Obsessed: Those who are Unappreciative
- The Obedient: Those who are Unashamed

The Oblivious
  • The oblivious don’t know about Christ. They have not heard the gospel message. They have no concept of a resurrected Savior and what that should mean for them personally.
  • They don’t know the truth.
  • To the oblivious, this Sunday is just another day with no special meaning.
  • The oblivious are the reason for the Great Commission
    • Matthew 28:19-20 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: 20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.

The Obsessed
  • The obsessed have heard about Christ. The gospel means nothing to them. The obsessed are more concerned with the preoccupations of the fallen world: the lust of the flesh; the lust of the eyes; and the pride of life.
  • They have ignored the truth.
  • To the obsessed, ‘Easter’ is just another reason to buy candy and gifts, dress up in their ‘Sunday Best’, eat a big meal and teach their children through example that nothing is sacred.
  • The obsessed have turned their back on God
    • Romans 1:24-25 Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves: 25 Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.

The Obedient
  • The obedient have, by the grace of God and the faith He gives, heard about Christ and accepted His free gift of salvation. The gospel means new life and a new lifestyle. The obedient are seeking the Savior daily and submitting to the transforming work of His Word and Spirit.
  • They have experienced the truth.
  • To the obedient, Easter is a glorious celebration of Christ’s resurrection, confirmation of Christ’s Deity, Christ’s defeat of death, and Christ as a living promise of eternal life for those who trust in Him!
  • The obedient, through the illumination of the Holy Spirit, understand the significance of the resurrection
    • Luke 24:44-48 And he said unto them, These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me. 45 Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures, 46 And said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behooved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day: 47 And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. 48 And ye are witnesses of these things.
Sadly, many claiming the name of Christ are not obedient to His call or His commands: they live a life that resembles the obsessed. Some are Christians but have not grown in their faith. Some believe they are Christians but are actually deceived. Some are just pretending to be something they are not.

Arrogance and pride should never be a part of the Christian’s celebration of Christ’s resurrection (or any other part of our lives). We aren’t perfect. We aren’t better than anyone else. Bet we are privileged to know Christ as Savior. And with that privilege comes great responsibility.

Please don’t misunderstand. I love the celebratory aspects of Easter. We serve a God who loves to see His children filled with the joy of celebration (God instituted many celebrations in the Old Testament). The point is, we should remember the significance of what we are celebrating and the source of our joy. We must maintain holiness, righteousness and dignity as we celebrate. And as we celebrate, we must pray for the lost!


Father, I thank You for our risen Savior. I thank You for what the resurrection means to all who sincerely call You Lord. I thank You for those who will come to know the truth about the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Through Your Holy Spirit, bring dignity and delight, reverence and rejoicing, solemnness and sincerity, piety and peace to our observances of Resurrection Sunday. I long for the day that I stand in Your presence in the glorified body promised in Your Word and demonstrated in Christ’s resurrection. All praise and glory and honor to You Lord. In Christ’s precious and eternal name I pray, Amen.

Saturday, March 23, 2013



Have you ever heard of something being ‘repurposed’? Simply put, it is to find a new purpose for something. You take something that has been used for one purpose, alter it, and then use it for something totally different. 

A few simple examples would be: taking an old tire, tying a rope on it, hanging it from a tree limb and using it as a swing; or taking clothing or other fabric, cutting it into pieces, and making them into a quilt.  

Why would repurposing be the subject of a Christian devotion? Put very simply, God has repurposed us! He has taken us from our fallen, sinful state and remade us to suit His purposes!!!

Our Original Condition – Lost in our sin and battling against God.
  • James 4:4 Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.

Why God Changes Us – Because he loves us.
  • John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

Our New Purpose – To bring glory to God in all we do and share His Truth with everyone.
  • Matthew 5:16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.
  • Mark 16:15 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

Let’s look at the process God uses to change us from sinners (slaves to Satan and the sin debt we could not pay) to saints (our sin debt has been paid by Christ’s sacrifice on the cross and we have been set apart from the world and dedicated for use by God).

STEP 1: Regenerated (New Life - Saved) – When we are spiritually reborn, God gives us eternal life, a new nature, and righteousness that cannot be earned.
  • Ephesians 2:4-5 But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, 5 Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)
  • 2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
  • 2 Corinthians 5:21 For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.

STEP 2: Reprogramed (New Thinking - Sanctified) – Then God takes us through a process that changes the way we think and act.
  • Romans 12:2 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
  • Colossians 3:9-10 Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds; 10 And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him:

STEP 3: Reproduced (New Purpose - Servants) – Now God can use us to fulfill His glorious plan. He uses us to share his love and make disciples.
  • Matthew 28:19-20 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: 20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.
  • 1 Corinthians 3:6-7 I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase. 7 So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase.

Never forget: we are called to be obedient, to glorify Him, and to share His truth with others; but He is the one, by His grace, that changes hearts and gives eternal life. God uses us as tools in the process of repurposing others.

Not only does God change who we are and give us a new purpose, He also changes our eternal destination. Because of His free gift of salvation in Jesus Christ, we will spend eternity in Heaven with Him!!!


Lord in Heaven, Your infinite grace, mercy, and love are beyond my comprehension. I could never adequately express my gratitude for all You have done, continue to do, and will do in my life. I pray that in Your strength, and according to Your Will, I will be a useable tool that brings glory and honor to your name and shares Your Holy Word with those who don’t know You. Thank You for saving me. Thank You changing me. Thank You for using me. I am Yours. Praise to Your Holy Name, forever. I offer my prayers in the glorious name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

DEBUT (Part 4 of 4) – The Present

DEBUT (Part 4 of 4) – The Present

This four part devotion focuses on the outlook Christians should maintain concerning the past, the present and the future. Part 1, posted on February 23, provided an introduction to this series and presented our primary text (Psalm 63). We looked back to the past in Part 2 (posted on March 1). Part 3 was posted on March 8 and focused on the future. So now we ponder the present.

Part 4: Acknowledge the Present (Concentrate on Our Purposes Today)

What is most of your effort focused on? What do you spend the majority of your time thinking about? What motivates your decisions? What do you need more than anything else to feel satisfied?  

As Christians, our goal is to be able to answer each of these questions honestly and with one word, God. None of us will fully achieve this goal until we are in heaven. But the purpose of today, right now, this very second, is to diligently seek God with all that we are, driven by a sincere desire to make Him the priority in every part of our lives.

Our ultimate purpose is to glorify God by becoming more like Christ. We accomplish this by:
  • Aligning who we are on the inside with who and what God has gifted, commanded and empowered us to be.
  • Making sure what people see on the outside reflects what God has made us on the inside.
  • Praying that, in His strength, all we do today will glorify God for eternity.

The Purpose of Today (Walking with God)

Verses 1 – 5 in Psalm 63 prescribe our passions in the present.

1 O God, thou art my God; early will I seek thee: my soul thirsteth for thee, my flesh longeth for thee in a dry and thirsty land, where no water is;
  • Acknowledge who God is – Deuteronomy 6:4-5
    • The LORD is our master, love and serve Him with all that you are.
  • Diligently seek Him – Hebrews 11:6
    • Nothing is more important than pursing Jehovah. 
  • Hunger and thirst for Him – Psalm 42:1-2
    • Genuine longing for God is a gift. Pray for it. Cherish it once you have it.
2 To see thy power and thy glory, so as I have seen thee in the sanctuary.
  • Observe His power and glory – Matthew 9:20-22
    • There is no luck. There are no coincidences. Acknowledge His sovereignty and power.
3 Because thy lovingkindness is better than life, my lips shall praise thee.
  • Appreciate His love and blessings – Psalm 100:4-5
    • Soaking in His blessings should empower you to praise Him with thanksgiving.
  • Praise Him with word and song – Psalm 150:1-6
    • Eventually, everyone and everything will praise Him. Start praising Him now.
4 Thus will I bless thee while I live: I will lift up my hands in thy name.
  • Adore and exalt Him – Psalm 46:10
    • Don’t be ashamed. Let your love for Him show.
5 My soul shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness; and my mouth shall praise thee with joyful lips:
  • Enjoy His blessings and give praise to Him with joy –              Psalm 34:8-9
    • True and lasting satisfaction is only found in Jesus Christ. 

Applying these fundamental actions and attitudes every day will lead to a life that honors God through obedience, service, thanksgiving, peace and praise.


Psalm 63 provides helpful guidance for a proper (but not exhaustive) Biblical view of our actions and attitudes regarding the past, the present and the future.  Although we only play a small part in the grand scheme of eternity, each of us is infinitely important to God (as evidenced by Christ's incarnation and the existence of scripture).  Here is a final summary of the key concepts from this devotion.

Reflecting Back
  • Appreciate the Past (We can’t Change Yesterday)
    • Learn from the past, don’t dwell on it.
  • The Power of Yesterday (The Testimony of God’s Faithfulness)
    • Celebrate previous blessings from God.
Reaching Forward
  • Anticipate the Future (We don’t Control Tomorrow)
    • Walk into the future trusting in Him.
  • The Promise of Tomorrow (The Certainty of God’s Plan)
    • Don’t worry, all the big questions about the future have been answered in His Word.
Reevaluating Now
  • Acknowledge the Present (Concentrate on Our Purposes Today)
    • Accept the responsibilities and privileges that come with being who and what God has called us to be.
  • The Purpose of Today (Walking with God)
    • We must live today, through His grace, like we really believe what we believe.
When the curtain comes down on your debut performance, how will God, in His perfect justice, judge your life? Did you live for Him today, everyday?


Father, all I think and do and say and desire is worthless if it doesn’t glorify and honor You. I pray that in Your love and grace, my view of the past, present and future will show humility and gratitude for all that You are and all that You have done, are doing, and will do for me. I fall down and You reach to where I am. I turn my back and You are there. I don’t understand and You give peace. I have needs and You meet them all. Thanks for giving me the ability to love you by loving me first. In the name of my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, AMEN.

Friday, March 8, 2013

DEBUT (Part 3 of 4) – The Future

DEBUT (Part 3 of 4) – The Future

This four part devotion focuses on the outlook Christians should maintain concerning the past, the present and the future. Part 1, posted on February 23, provided an introduction to this series and presented our primary text (Psalm 63). We looked back to the past in Part 2 (posted on March 1). Now let’s focus our view of the future.

Part 3: Anticipate the Future (We don’t Control Tomorrow)

What is your outlook on tomorrow? Are you dreading another day trapped in the grind? Are you excited about the fresh start that comes with a new day? What about six months from now? Are you anticipating blessings or overwhelmed with anxiety?

Whether your attitude about the future is based on fantasy, fear or fascination, one thing is for certain, you cannot control what will come your way. The only thing you can control about the future is the attitude you take into it.  

Worrying will drain you and doesn’t change anything (Matthew 6:34). Practical planning honors God as long as you recognize that He is in control and your plans may be all for nothing (James 4:13-16).

Ask yourself, ‘Did yesterday’s worries about tomorrow bring peace to the reality of today?

The peace we experience today is based on our trust in His guarantees for tomorrow. As Christians, we should face the future with confidence that is based on God’s sovereignty, love and goodness (Romans 8:28).

The Promise of Tomorrow (The Certainty of God’s Plan)

Psalm 63, verses 9 – 11, focus on the foretold future.

9 But those that seek my soul, to destroy it, shall go into the lower parts of the earth.
  • The ultimate fate of the enemies of God and His children – Revelation 20:11-15
    • Those who reject God will face the final judgment and eternity in the lake of fire.
10 They shall fall by the sword: they shall be a portion for foxes.
  • Their tragic end – Luke 16:22-24
    • Tormented forever by literal fire.
11 But the king shall rejoice in God; every one that sweareth by him shall glory: but the mouth of them that speak lies shall be stopped.
  • The glorious future of the people who love the Lord – Revelation 21:3-4
    • For the children of God, those saved by the blood of Christ, we will spend eternity in Heaven, no pain and no tears, worshiping our Heavenly Father.
As much as we anticipate our glorious future in Heaven, we should also agonize over the fate of the lost. God has commanded us to shine as lights in this dark world. He has chosen to use us to share His truth. Though we rest in His sovereignty, shame on us when we neglect our responsibility to obey His commands and fulfill the Great Commission.

We can think of the challenges we will face during our future here on earth as the unexpected traffic jam, the flat tire, the rain storm and the crazy driver we encounter on our drive towards a weekend getaway that ends up being the best time of our life. But Heaven will be infinitely greater than we can imagine (Romans 8:18).


Lord, I know my view of the future is a direct measure of my faith in You. Thank You for Your indwelling Spirit that comforts and reassures me in times of worry. Forgive me when I get overly anxious about what the future holds. Your Word is clear, we will have trials, we will face problems. But our trust is in You and the promises contained in Your Word. Please give me the wisdom, faith and strength to look to the future with anticipation and peace. In the name of Jesus Christ I pray. Amen.

Friday, March 1, 2013

DEBUT (Part 2 of 4) – The Past

DEBUT (Part 2 of 4) – The Past

This four part devotion focuses on the outlook Christians should maintain concerning the past, the present and the future. Part 1, posted on February 23, provided an introduction to this series and presented our primary text (Psalm 63).

Part 2: Appreciate the Past (We can’t Change Yesterday)

Getting stuck in the past is a waste of time and can become a very unhealthy preoccupation. This can apply to positive memories (defining yourself today by accomplishments from the past) and negative experiences (drowning in regrets from days gone by).

However, forgetting the past is very dangerous. Consider the following statements. A fool does not learn from their mistakes. Someone who is intelligent learns from their mistakes. A wise person learns from the mistakes of others.

Learning from the past is very important. We should reflect on our successes, failures, blessings and hurts and then apply what we learn. The Bible provides many opportunities to learn from the experiences of others. This is one of the reasons God so openly shares both the triumphs and tragedies of the past.

Additionally, we often connect with God today by remembering His works from yesterday. Our faith and confidence in God are strengthened when we acknowledge and appreciate the awesome ways He has moved in the past.  

The Power of Yesterday (The Testimony of God’s Faithfulness)

In Psalm 63, verses 6 – 8 deal with a proper perspective of the past.

6 When I remember thee upon my bed, and meditate on thee in the night watches.
  • Remember what God has done for you – Joshua 4:4-7
    • The nation of Israel erected 12 stones as a physical reminder of the marvelous works of God.
7 Because thou hast been my help, therefore in the shadow of thy wings will I rejoice.
  • He has helped you, met your needs – Exodus 17:1-7
    • God provided water from a rock as the Jews traveled from the Red Sea towards Sinai.
  • He has protected you – Exodus 14:26-29
    • God parted the Red Sea, and after the Nation of Israel passed through, the water overwhelmed and destroyed the Egyptians pursuing them.
8 My soul followeth hard after thee: thy right hand upholdeth me.
  • As you sought diligently after Him, His power kept you from falling – Psalm 116:8
    • Our God sustains us!
We all have a past. We cannot change it. So, no matter how difficult it seems, by the grace and love of Christ, take the good, the bad and the ugly from yesterday and use it as fuel to power positive change in your life today and tomorrow, all for the glory of God. For with God, all things are possible (Mark 10:27).  


Loving Father and King, I have made the mistakes of boasting about the successes in my past and drowning in the sorrow of the failures and hurts. But in You there is healing and perspective. I confess my pride and self-pity. I lay my past at Your feet and ask You to use the lessons and blessings from yesterday to reshape my understanding of today and my outlook on tomorrow. I trust in Your eternal perspective and power. I trust in Your love for me. I trust that all things work together for my good - I do love You. Thank You for the healing and grace. In the love, and by the blood of Christ I pray. Amen.