Sunday, September 23, 2018

Not Sure What to Call this Devotion

Not Sure What to Call this Devotion

Perhaps I should call it ‘Bad Attitude’, or ‘Worn Out’, or ‘Need a Break’, or ‘Who Cares’, or…

Do you ever have one of those days when you wrestle with one or more of the following (or similar) questions regarding the things Jesus has gifted and called you to do?
  • No Commitment – ‘Why do I want to give up?’
  • No Joy – ‘Why am I so frustrated?’
  • No Passion – ‘Why am I procrastinating?’
  • No Time – ‘Why is this taking so long?’
  • No Satisfaction – ‘Why is this so hard?
  • No Results – ‘Why am I even doing this?

I do. And honestly, I am having one of those days today. Yet here I am, refusing to walk away from what, at this particular moment, feels more like an obligation than a privilege.

Actually, right now, I am realizing that everything above is a prayer to my Lord and Savior. A desperate plea for His intervention in my self-absorbed and pitiful pity party.

And as I type away, He is speaking to me:
  • Lay all that down.
  • Trust me.
  • I love you.
  • You matter.
  • This matters.
  • Praise me.

Jesus, I praise You. You are worthy of so much more than what I have to give, yet I give it all to You. Thank You for dying for me. Thank You for saving me. Thank You for being kind and patient. Thank You for Your perfect love. I trust You. I love You. I am Yours. Use me as You see fit. May I bring glory and honor to You.
  • 1 Peter 1:6-9 In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, 7 that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ, 8 whom having not seen you love. Though now you do not see Him, yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, 9 receiving the end of your faith—the salvation of your souls.

All who serve Him

Stay Focused on Him
Walk with Him
Pray to Him
Praise Him
Trust Him
Love Him
Obey Him 

Sunday, September 9, 2018

My Shepherd and My Father

My Shepherd and My Father

The God of the Bible is known by many names/titles. He is my Lord, God, Savior, King, Master, Redeemer, deliverer, rock, fortress, shelter, strength, shield, etc. However, there are two specific designations for God that I will focus on in this devotion. In Psalm 23, He is called Shepherd. In Matthew 6:9-13, He is called Father. Although He is called Shepherd and Father in many other scriptures, these are two of the most well-known and beloved passages found in all the Bible.

And as the years pass, and as I grow closer and closer to Him (by His grace and mercy), I believe there are three primary reasons for the popularity of these verses. In these verses we find:
  1. A crystal-clear picture of the profoundly personal relationship we can have with the creator, sustainer and judge of the universe.
  2. The benevolent, loving and unchanging character of the one true God is presented with concepts that can be readily embraced by all peoples.
  3. That the hope for reconciliation and restoration of this broken world and the broken people who populate it is not only a reality, but is desired and made available by the One righteous King who rules over all things.

Let’s take a closer look at what these verses tell us about who God is, what He does, and how He does it.

His Position

  • Psalm 23:1 The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
    • My perfect provider and protector keeps a close eye on me. He comes after me when I stray. 
  • Matthew 6:9-10 In this manner, therefore, pray: Our Father in heaven, Hallowed be Your name. 10 Your kingdom come. Your will be done On earth as it is in heaven.
    • I am loved by a Father who knows me better than I know myself. His plans for me are best. 

His Provision
  • Psalm 23:2a He makes me to lie down in green pastures;
    • He has provided a glorious eternal destination for those who love and obey Him.
  • Matthew 6:11 Give us this day our daily bread.
    • He meets all my physical and spiritual needs (even when I think it isn’t enough).

His Peace
  • Psalm 23:2b He leads me beside the still waters.
    • My peace is not defined by my surroundings, it is found only in Him.
  • Matthew 6:12 And forgive us our debts, As we forgive our debtors.
    • Through His grace and mercy, we find forgiveness of sins and peace with Him. We find peace with others when we are gracious and merciful.

His Pardon
  • Psalm 23:3a He restores my soul;
    • I born into sin and condemned to death – He paid for my soul by shedding His sinless blood. Now I have eternal life.
  • Matthew 6:13a-b And do not lead us into temptation, But deliver us from the evil one.
    • He has rescued me from my depraved nature, the sinful ways of the world, and the adversary.

His Participation
  • Psalm 23:3b He leads me in the paths of righteousness For His name’s sake.
    • He is deeply and personally engaged with my life – that’s what He is known for.
  • Matthew 6:13c For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.
    • Not only is He the all-powerful, all-knowing ruler over all things, He receives glory and honor for how, when and why He righteously exercises His authority.

Here are a few final thoughts – Jesus said:
  • John 10:11 “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep.
  • Matthew 7:11 If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him!

Follow the Shepherd!
Honor the Father!
Embrace Him as Both!!


I am in awe of You my Selfless Shepherd and Faithful Father. Teach, correct and guide me as I seek to know You better and honor You with all that I am. Please help me surrender everything to You. I am tired of holding back. I am sick of the fear and doubts. Use me for Your glory. I ask these things in the name of Jesus Christ my Lord and Savior. Amen.