Join me in reading Today’s Word with Joel and Victoria Osteen:
Before the foundation of the world, God laid out a plan for your life. He created you with a purpose, for a purpose, and He created you to be successful! He has marked moments already laid out that are going to come across your path. These moments are not ordinary. They are destiny-altering moments. They are designed to thrust you years ahead.
Ecclesiastes tells us that time and chance come together for every person. That means you will have opportunities to meet the right people, opportunities to advance in your career, and opportunities to fulfill your dreams. God has already prearranged for you times of increase, promotion and blessing.
Today, open your eyes of faith and see the good things God has in store for your future. Thank Him for what He’s doing and what He’s about to do. Thank Him for divine connections and marked moments because He is ready and willing to fulfill every dream and desire He’s placed within your heart!
Heavenly Father, thank You for marked moments and divine opportunities in my life. I trust that You are working behind the scenes no matter what the circumstances look like. I choose today to keep my heart and mind focused on Your goodness, knowing that You are a rewarder of those who diligently seek after You in Jesus’ name. Amen.
Today I am reading day 341 of Joseph Prince’s Devotional:
God Makes All Things Work Together For Good
Romans 8:28 28And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.
In this verse, “all things” is literally all things — the good, the bad and the ugly! Now, it does not mean that all things are from God. Some things, such as accidents, sicknesses, broken relationships and divorces are not from Him. They are from the devil or just part of the fallen world that we live in. But what this verse does tell us is that “all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose”. That is our inheritance as God’s beloved children.
Do the people of the world have this inheritance? No. When bad things happen to them, they are what they are — bad things. But when bad things happen to the children of God, it does not end there. God can make those bad things work together for good. In other words, the devil may throw lemons at you, but God can take those lemons and make refreshing lemonade for you!
For example, if you have been retrenched, believe that God, who makes all things work together for good, has a better job for you. Indeed, we have received testimonies from church members who have ended up with better jobs and higher salaries after they were retrenched.
It is important you remember that God is not behind anything bad or ugly. But when those things happen, know that He can make all things work together for good. And don’t let anyone tell you that all things will work together for good only if you love God and are called according to His purpose. These two things are not conditions but descriptions of believers. Believers are those who love God because they know that God first loved them. (1 John 4:19) And they are called according to His purpose for they have been born again and belong to Him.
My friend, because you have been born again, all things in your life will work together for good. This is your inheritance as a beloved child of God!
Thought For The Day
God is not behind anything bad or ugly. When those things happen, know that He can make all things work together for good.
Today I am reading day 303 of Rick Warren’s Daily Devotional:
Don’t Stop Until You Meet Jesus
The wise men did not stop until they met Jesus. The Bible says they finally came to the place where Jesus was. Have you done that yet? Have you come to the point in your life where you’ve met Jesus personally?
If you haven’t, you are still on the journey. If you haven’t met him face-to-face yet, don’t stop seeking, keep on going.
A lot of people start off asking the important questions of life: “Who am I? Where am I? Where did I come from? Where am I going? Does my life have meaning? Is there a purpose? What is the significance of it all?’
These are important questions. But if you don’t keep seeking the answers, pretty soon you get distracted by other things, even important things, like your career or education. But when people do that, they have trouble getting back on the journey. Many people spend the rest of their lives missing the very purpose they were created for.
Like the wise men, don’t stop seeking until you meet Jesus. Where do you find Jesus? The same place the wise men did — in the ordinary. You find him in the problems of life, not in the spectacular. You find him in the stuff of life, in the stalls and the stables where it’s smelly and where life is being born.
Today I am reading day 162 of Rick Warren’s Daily Devotional:
Letting Go of the Eternally Useless
2CO 4:18 For we fix our attention, not on things that are seen, but on things that are unseen. What can be seen lasts only for a time, but what cannot be seen lasts forever.
As you strive to reach the goals that God has given you, it’s important to remember that life on earth is just a temporary assignment. Knowing this truth should radically alter your values and fix your attention on the things that are eternally important.
As C. S. Lewis observed, “All that is not eternal is eternally useless.”
It is a fatal mistake to assume that God’s goal for your life is material prosperity or popular success, as the world defines it. The abundant life has nothing to do with material abundance. Faithfulness to God does not guarantee success in a career or even in ministry. Never focus on temporary crowns.
Paul was faithful, yet he ended up in prison. John the Baptist was faithful, but he was beheaded. Millions of faithful people have been martyred, have lost everything, or have come to the end of life with nothing to show for it. But the end of life is not the end!
When life gets tough, when you’re overwhelmed with doubt, or when you wonder if living for Christ is worth the effort, remember that you are not home yet. At death you won’t leave home – you’ll go home.
Today I am reading day 140 of Rick Warren’s Daily Devotional:
Your Personality Reveals Purpose
Galatians 6:4 Each one should test their own actions. Then they can take pride in themselves alone, without comparing themselves to someone else,
A way to determine how you can serve others is to ask yourself such questions as: What do I really enjoy doing most? When do I feel the most fully alive? What am I doing when I lose track of time? Do I like routine or variety? Do I prefer serving with a team or by myself? Am I more introverted or extroverted? Am I more a thinker or a feeler? Which do I enjoy more – competing or cooperating?
Examine your experiences and extract the lessons you’ve learned. Review your life and think about how it has shaped you.
Forgotten experiences are worthless; that’s a good reason to keep a spiritual journal. Paul worried that the believers in Galatia would waste the pain they had been through. He said, “Were all your experiences wasted? I hope not!” (Galatians 3:4 NCV)
We rarely see God’s good purpose in pain or failure or embarrassment while it is happening. Only in hindsight do we understand how God intended a problem for good.
Extracting the lessons from your experiences takes time. I recommend that you take an entire weekend for a life review retreat, where you pause to see how God has worked in the various defining moments of your life and consider how he wants to use those lessons to help others.
This will give you very clear direction on the ways he wants you to minister to others.
Today I am reading day 138 of Rick Warren’s Daily Devotional:
Give God Your Best
Ephesians 5:17 Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is.
God shaped you for a purpose and he expects you to make the most of what you’ve been given. He doesn’t want you to worry about or covet abilities that you don’t have. Instead he wants you to focus on talents he has given you to use.
When you attempt to serve God in ways that you’re not shaped to serve, it feels like forcing a square peg into a round hole. It’s frustrating and produces limited results. It also wastes your time, talent, and energy.
The best use of your life is to serve God out of your shape (the gifts and abilities God has given you). To do this you must discover your shape, learn to accept and enjoy it, and then develop it to its fullest potential.
The Bible says, “Don’t act thoughtlessly, but understand what the Lord wants you to do.” (Ephesians 5:17 NLT) Don’t let another day go by. Start finding out and clarifying what God intends for you to be and do.
Begin by assessing your gifts and abilities. Take a long, honest look at what you are good at and what you’re not good at.
Make a list. Ask other people for their candid opinion. Tell them you’re searching for the truth, not fishing for a compliment.
Ask questions like these: Where have I seen fruit in my life that other people confirmed? Where have I already been successful?
Today I am reading day 82 of Rick Warren’s Daily Devotional:
Becoming a “God-first’ Believer
Mark 16:15 He said to them, “Go into the whole world and proclaim the good news to every creature.
Revelation 7:9 After this I looked, and there was a great crowd that no one could number. They were from every nation, tribe, people, and language. They were standing before the throne and before the Lamb. They wore white robes and held palm branches in their hands.
“Me-first’ believers ask, “How can God make my life more comfortable?” They want to use God for their purposes instead of being used for his purposes.
“God-first’ believers know they’ve been saved to serve and made for mission. They’re eager to receive a personal assignment and excited about the privilege of being used by God.
Their joy, confidence, and enthusiasm are contagious because they know they’re making a difference. They wake up each morning expecting God to work through them in fresh ways.
Which type of believer do you want to be?
God invites you to participate in the greatest, largest, most diverse, and most significant cause in history – building his Kingdom. History is his story; he’s building his family for eternity. Nothing matters more and nothing will last as long.
From the book of Revelation we know God’s global mission will be accomplished, that someday the Great Commission will be the Great Completion. In heaven, an enormous crowd of people “from every race, tribe, nation, and language” will one day stand before Jesus Christ to worship him. (Revelation 7:9 CEV)
Today I am reading day 66 of Rick Warren’s Daily Devotional:
Convictions Give Purpose
1 Thessalonians 1:5 because our gospel came to you not simply with words but also with power, with the Holy Spirit and deep conviction. You know how we lived among you for your sake.
Jesus’ life was dominated by his conviction that he was sent to do the Father’s will. This produced a deep awareness of his life’s purpose and kept him from being distracted by the agenda of others. If you want to gain insight into the convictions Jesus held, just study all the times he used the phrase “I must.”
When people develop Christlike convictions, they, too, develop a sense of purpose.
Conviction also has an attractive quality to it. This explains the popularity of many cults. Their beliefs are erroneous and often illogical, yet they are believed with intense conviction. In contrast, churches without clear, strong convictions will never attract the level of commitment that Christ deserves.
We must burn with the conviction that the Kingdom of God is the greatest cause in the world. The insightful preacher, Vance Havner, used to say, “Jesus demands greater allegiance than any dictator that every lived. The difference is that Jesus has a right to it!”
Today I am reading day 10 of Rick Warren’s Daily Devotional:
How Can I Know My Destiny?
1 Peter 4:10 Each one, as a good manager of God’s different gifts, must use for the good of others the special gift he has received from God.
Romans 14:12 Every one of us, then, will have to give an account to God.
Do you know what God created you for? Do you know what your destiny is?
The first thing you must do understand your destiny is to recognize the gifts God has given you to use. They include the things you can’t control – your parents, your nationality, your race, your language. They also include your SHAPE – your spiritual gifts, heart, abilities, personality and experiences. These are the things that make you uniquely you.
Now you are not responsible for the gifts God didn’t give you. In other words, if you are not artistically gifted, you are not expected to paint pictures like Rembrandt. But you are responsible for the ones he did give you.
When you get to heaven, God isn’t going to compare you with anyone else, but he will compare you with yourself. What did you do with what you were given? What could you have done if you had trusted God a little bit more? Romans 14:12 (NIV) says, “Each of us will have to give personal account to God.”
God has given you gifts for a purpose. And you have a responsibility to be a good steward of those gifts – not for selfish uses, but for the good of others. Your gifts are not for your benefit. God gave you gifts for the benefit of other people. Ask yourself, “What has God given me for good to use for good?”
Today I am reading day 4 of NIV Once-A-Day At the Table Family Devotional:
1 Chronicles 29:9 The people had given willingly to the Lord, and they were happy that so much had been given. King David also was extremely happy.
• Why does God want your worship?
• How can we become a more worshipful family?
If you ask someone, “What were you put on this earth to do?” chances are you’ll find out what that person likes to do: “I was put on this earth to play soccer.” Or you might find out what that person feels responsible to do: “I was put on this earth to take care of my family.” But neither answer is correct. As human beings, we were created for one purpose: to give glory to God.
That means worship — and that’s what God wants from us more than anything. The Israelites discovered how important worship is to God. When King David announced that he was building a temple where the people could worship God, the Israelites leapt at the chance to be a part of it. They gave the best of everything they had to use in the construction. They devoted themselves to worship. As a result, God blessed their nation with peace, wealth and respect among the other nations of the world.
God is pleased by our worship and blesses us. Receiving his blessing gives us cause to worship him more, which gives him reason to bless us more. It’s a beautiful cycle!
My Prayer to God
Dear God, we worship you for your love and goodness. Thank you for taking care of your people in the past, for taking care of us today and for taking care of us in the future. Amen.