Sunday May 31, 2020
“The soul of Jonathan was knit with the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul.”  1 Sa 18:1

It hurts when you discover that not everyone has your best interests at heart. So you must learn to be more discerning, and know on what level to interact with people. Usually only a few people belong in your inner circle. That’s why you must be wise when it comes to who you allow into that circle. We see this illustrated in the lives of David and Jonathan. David was at odds with King Saul, the tather of his best friend, Jonathan. Jonathan kept David’s secrets and protected him with his very life, even when faced with displeasing his own family. Jonathan wasn’t seeking to elevate himself, inflate his own self-importance, or orchestrate his own advancement through his relationship with David. Simply stated, they had a ·soul connection.” The strength of a confidant lies in their silence. It someone’s a gossiper, they automatically disqualify themselves. We must be able to rest in the security of these relationships, in order to express ourselves, gather information, and glean wise counsel. Otherwise, we reap the consequences of having the wrong people know too much about us. Confidants not only maintain our secrets, they refuse to exploit that privileged information tor their own gain. They really care about us, and don’t throw our past mistakes in our face. They refuse to utter the words ·1 told you so.” Such people are in your life tor the long haul, and you must recognize and cherish them.


Saturday May 30, 2020
“Our sufficiency is from God.”  2 Co 3:5 NKJV

hr is t i  an counselor Dr. Ann Shorb writes, “Each morning I reach for an assortment of nutritional supplements. Each has something I need, but not one by itself is enough to provide everything: Here are the ·spiritual supplements” she says she takes: /1) His death on the cross is sufficient for my salvation: “He is also able to save to the uttermost those who come to God through Him… He… lives to make intercession for them· (Heb 7:25 NKJV). /2) His strength is sufficient for my weakness: “He gives strength to those who are tired and more power to those who are weak· (Isa 40:29 NCV). /3) His authority is sufficient for my struggles: Jesus said, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and… earth. Go therefore· (Mt 28:18-19 NKJV). /4) His power is sufficient to restore me: ‘The Lord upholds all who tall, and raises… all who are bowed down· (Ps 145:14 NKJV). /5) His wisdom and knowledge are sufficient to direct me: ‘He knows the way that I take; when He has tested me,1  shall come forth as gold” (Job 23:10 NKJV). /6) His grace is sufficient for all my needs: “My grace is sufficient tor you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness· (2 Co 12:9 NKJV). sometimes you’ll hear Psalm 51:12 quoted as “Restore unto me the JOY of my salvation,” instead of “Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation.” There’s a big difference! My salvation means me working to be saved and never knowing if I’ve done enough. Thy salvation depends totally on Christ’s finished work on Calvary. It acknowledges that while we’ll never be ·sufficient of ourselves… our sufficiency is from God.”


Friday May 29, 2020
“If you diligently obey the voice of the Lord…all these blessings shall come upon you.”  Dt 28:1-2 NKJV
Many  of God’s blessings come with conditions: “Diligently obey… all His commandments· (v. 1). When you put God’s Word into action, you obtain His blessing. Blind Bartimaeus was begging when Jesus passed by. So he cried out, “Lord, that I might receive my sight” (Mk 10:51). He knew God’s blessing wasn’t automatic, but it was within his reach. In a Peanuts cartoon, Charlie Brown is practicing his archery. In addition to a bow and arrow, he carries a paintbrush and a bucket of paint. He shoots the arrow toward the target, and wherever it lands he paints a bull’s-eye around it. When Lucy asks Charlie about this, he says, ‘This way I always hit my target!· One author writes: ‘This is the way some Christians live… wherever the arrows of life happen to land, they claim was their destination all along. How badly do you want the blessing of God? How committed are you? The desires God placed in your spirit and the goals He set in His Word won’t be fulfilled automatically, but they·re attainable. First: You must build a strong foundation by becoming established in God’s Word. Second: Expect to increase one step at a time. Paul says, Walk in the steps of… faith’ (Ro 4:12 NKJV). Results won’t appear overnight, but they will come and you’ll see the rewards of your diligence. Third: Aim high, expect God’s best, and be willing to give Him your best. Peter says, ‘Giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue… knowledge… self-control… perseverance … godliness… brotherly kindness…and.. .love· (2 Pe 1:5-7 NKJV).”


Thursday may 28, 2020
“Righteousness…shall be imputed to us.”  Ro 4:22, 24 NKHV
To understand the word “imputed,· picture funds being transferred from one account to another. Banks do it every day. Imagine yourself totally destitute and unable to pay your debts. Then in an astounding act of grace someone assumes all your debts, and at the same time transfers to your account such “abundance· that you never have to work. That’s what happened at the cross when God “imputed” all your sins to Christ’s account, and “imputed” all His righteousness to your account. Mind-blowing, isn’t it? Would you say, ·1 can’t allow you to pay a// these debts alone, so I’ll work to prove myself worthy of your grace?” We do that when we “add” our good works to Christ’s finished work. Salvation is like health food labeled ·no man-made additives.” Paul writes, “For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him” (2 Co 5:21 NKJV). In the same sense God ·made” Jesus who never sinned, to “be” sin, He ·made” you who could never be righteous enough, to “become· righteous in His eyes. “But I feel such guilt when I sin.” You’re supposed to! But when Christ took away a// your sin, He took away all your guilt. So what are you feeling? Inner conflict! Your regenerated spirit is telling you that you can’t indulge in sin; it’s not who you are anymore! Why did God do it this way? Because any righteousness we could achieve falls far short of what He requires. Rejoice-today God sees you clothed in the righteousness of Christ, therefore you’re always loved and accepted by Him.


Wednesday May 27, 2020
“The integrity of the upright will guide them.”  Pr 11:3 NKJV

After leading the Nation of Israel for forty years, t_he prophet Samuel didn’t get a retirement party and a gold watch. He got something much better m the form of this commendation: “You have not cheated or oppressed us· (1 Sa 12:4 NIV). He led them, instructed them, and blessed them, but not one time did he take advantage of them. How refreshing! How remarkable-particularly in today’s world of business and politics S. Lewis said, “Education without values, as useful as it is, seems rather to make a man a more clever devil.· So before you set your goals, determine your values. Values are like guardrails on the highway; they keep you from veering off the road and over the cliffs edge. They determine how far you’ll go on questionable issues. Knowing what matters and what you truly value is the key to living a life of meaning and purpose. For most of us the problem isn’t having values, the problem is living them out. We all value honesty, integrity, and forgiveness, but when we·re pressed, do we really live them out-especially when it costs us? Pursuing a life of values comes with a price. But what we get in exchange is the ability to hold our head high during’the day and sleep well at night. And perhaps just as important-it allows us to relax and be ourselves. The mental toll of cheating, lying, and stealing is draining. Trying to remember the lie you told someone last week, so that today’s lie will match up, can literally wear you out. When you live a life of integrity, you don’t have to worry about such things’



Tuesday May 26, 2020
“Be still, and know that I am God.”  Ps 46:10

Let’s take a look at this Scripture: (1) ‘Be still.·· Activity born out of anxiety actually pre­vents God from showing Himself strong on your behalf. That doesn’t mean you can be passive or lazy; it means doing what God leads you to do without running ahead of Him. It means submitting to Him by slowing down and waiting. Why? To make sure you have a sense of peace to go along with the ideas you believe He’s giving you (See Col 3: 15). Ask Him to reveal His will; then “be still.” acknowledge that He’s in charge and He knows what He’s doing. /2) “Know that I am God.·· This means acknowledging that you are not God! When you don·t obey God, consult Him, or recognize His timing, you remove Him from the throne of your life and end up trying to take His place. And you know how well that works, right? We hear a lot about goal-setting and vision. And it’s a scriptural principle, for “where there is no vision, the people perish” (Pr 29:18). But the Bible also says, “The vision is.. .tor an appointed time… Though it tarries, wait for it” (Hab 2:3 NKJV). You·11 never fulfill your vision without the help of the One who gave it to you. Nineteenth-century American clergyman Henry Ward Beecher said, “Toe strength of a man consists in finding out the way God is going, and going that way: Remember, there·s no time lost in waiting if you·re waiting on the Lord. So don’t let a “how to· seminar or a “type A personality· stampede you into getting ahead of God, or attempting to forge ahead under your own steam.


Monday May 25, 2020
“Watch and pray, lest you enter into temptation.”  Mt 26:41 NKJV

Why did Jesus tell His disciples, “Watch and pray, lest you enter into temptation.  The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak”? Because He knows that without the indwelling power of the Holy Spirit, we’re not equal to the temptations that come our way. Jesus didn’t doubt the disciples· love for Him or their willingness to serve Him, but He knew they couldn’t do it in their own strength. And you can’t either. When you fight the flesh In the power of the flesh, you end up fighting yourself-and you lose every time. Note the words “lest you enter into temptation.” You’ll never be exempt from temptation, but you don·t have to ·enter into· it. Indeed, your regenerated spirit can·t “enter into· it because sin has no appeal to it. But your unregenerated “flesh” will always be attracted to sin. And becoming a Christian increases the frequency, variety, and in tensity of the temptations you face. Why? Because Satan, ·the tempter,” doesn’t give up control easily. He will fight you constantly, and on different fronts. The Bible speaks of “manifold temptations· (1 Pe 1:6). The word ·manifold” means there are “many kinds” of temptation. What’s the answer? “Manifold grace!” (1 Pe 4:10). The moment temptation rears its head, and before you have time to “enter into· it, draw on God’s grace. How do you do that? Jesus said, “Watch and pray.” The New Living Bible says, “Keep alert and pray. Otherwise temptation will overpower you:


Sunday May 24, 2020
“Wait on the Lord: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen [your] heart.”  Ps 27:14
David had reached his breaking point. “/ would have lost heart, unless /·had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the /and of the living” (Ps 27:13 NKJV). Can you identify? Have you reached your breaking point? If so, you have two options: Break down or break through. It all depends on what you do. There·s an old saying, “The same sunshine that melts the butter hardens the clay.” When trouble comes, you can either turn against God because you served Him and don’t understand why He’s allowing it, or tum to Him for strength and understanding. That’s why what David says next is so important: “Wait on the Lord: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen your heart.” Sometimes God changes our circumstances; other times He uses them to strengthen us. Try to understand this. It’s not just about you, but those God wants to reach through you. “He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others· (2 Co 1:4 NLT). Nothing catches God off guard, and nothing·s too hard for Him to handle. The situation you’re in right now can become a platform for Him to demonstrate His love and care for you. “The faithful love of the Lord never ends! His mercies never cease. Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each morning. I say to myself, The Lord is my inheritance; therefore I will hope in him!’ The Lord is good to those who depend on him” (La 3:22-25 NLT).


Saturday May 23, 2020
“The Lord God planted a garden…and there He put the Man whom He had formed.”  Ge 2:8 NKJV

First God made the garden, then He made man and woman and placed them in the garden. This is called “the law of location.” Understand this: You will succeed when  you are where God wants you to be. Have you ever experienced the pain of a dislocated joint? It’s miserable. So is trying to “do your own thing· instead of doing God’s will. You can go the easy way or the hard way; God gives you that option. But eventually you’ll go, or you’ll go under. Jonah is an example of this-he decided not to go to Nineveh and preach because he didn’t like the people who lived there. Helping them was the last thing he wanted to do, so he decided to run from his God-given assignment in Nineveh. As a result he ran into a storm, caused misery and loss for everyone on board, and hit bottom before he finally got to where God wanted him to go. Learn from Jonah. Don’t repeat his foolish, costly, and unnecessary mistake. God told Adam to “be fruitful and multiply” (Ge 1:28). Then He told him, “You have to work at it.” When you get to the right place, don’t expect your assignment to be easy or think you’ll become successful overnight.  American clergyman and author Phillips Brooks prayed, “Lord, we ask You not for lighter burdens, but for stronger backs.” When Paul prayed for relief, God told him, “My grace is sufficient for thee· (2 Co 12:9). When you’re in the right place, doing what God wants, you’ll thrive in conditions others crumble under because you’ll be ·graced’ to handle it.



Friday May 22, 2020
“To him who overcomes.”  Rev 2:7 NKJV

Nothing becomes great until it overcomes something. Paul writes, “For a great… door has opened to me, and there are many adversaries· (1 Co 16:9 NKJV). Great doors of opportunity come with great challenges, and those challenges will stretch your faith. rt outstanding success came easy, everybody would have it. But if everybody had it, then it wouldn’t be outstanding success. How does a caterpillar develop into a butterfly? By overcoming the cocoon. Would it be easier to stay in the comfort of the cocoon? Some days the struggle is so great that the caterpillar probably thinks so. But the price of freedom, flight, and discovery, is struggle, development, and breakthrough. There is no other way. Why did Jesus send His disciples into the storm on the Sea of Galilee? To teach them to trust Him in every situation of life. Soon He’d be leaving them, so He used different experiences to equip them for the future. What are you trying to overcome today? Instead of complaining about it, or asking God to take it away, try to see it as preparation for the thing He has called you to do. Read these Scriptures. “Blessed is the man who endures temptation· (Jas 1:12 NKJV). ‘To him who overcomes I will give to eat from the tree of life’ (Rev 2:7 NKJV). “Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven· (Mt 5:10 NKJV). “Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good’ (Ro 12:21). “Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil” (Eph 6:11). Today you’re called to be an overcomer