'blessings' Tagged Posts

'blessings' Tagged Posts

Daily Devotions

Then Jesus said to them, ‘Very truly, I tell you, it was not Moses who gave you the bread from heaven, but it is my Father who gives you the true bread from heaven.’” vs. 32 John 6:25-35 As the years pass each major holiday seems to acquire a unique identity, and that’s certainly true for Thanksgiving. For most Americans this is a day for coming together as families, maybe watching a little football, and then gorging on a multi-course…

Daily Devotions

Then you, together with the Levites and the aliens who reside among you, shall celebrate with all the bounty that the Lord your God has given to you and to your house.” vs. 11 Deuteronomy 26:1-11 The Israelites, convinced that the God of their ancestors had directed them to cross the Jordan and take possession of the land, codified thanksgiving as a part of their written law. Each year after the harvest they would take a portion of the firstfruits…

Daily Devotions

Jerusalem—built as a city that is bound firmly together. To it the tribes go up, the tribes of the Lord, as was decreed for Israel, to give thanks to the name of the Lord.” vss.3-4 Psalm 122 The ancient Israelites were convinced that God was responsible for their existence as a nation, and enshrined regular festivals of thanksgiving in their law codes. And the people were grateful! Ordinary folks recognized their dependence upon a benevolent God for survival and sustenance,…

Daily Devotions

Why should you be like someone confused, like a mighty warrior who cannot give help? Yet you, O Lord, are in the midst of us, and we are called by your name; do not forsake us!” vs. 9 Jeremiah 14:7-10 Judah was in a period of famine and drought, with powerful enemies closing in on every side, and they needed the Lord’s help. But nothing was happening, and the people were in despair. As was their custom they complained, perhaps…

Daily Devotions

Then he said to him, ‘Get up and go on your way; your faith has made you well.’” vs.19 Luke 17:15-19 Faith is a big word for the followers of Jesus. We run across it regularly as we read the scriptures and have discovered that it can have a variety of meanings. In this instance, Jesus ascribes it to a Samaritan man who had been healed of his leprosy. Evidently all ten of the lepers had faith, they had trusted…

Daily Devotions

I call heaven and earth to witness against you today that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Choose life so that you and your descendants may live…” vs. 19 Deuteronomy 30:19-20 Those who have drunk deeply from the gospel of grace sometimes don’t quite know what to do with the emphasis on choice that is found in Deuteronomy. We imagine that since salvation is in Christ and not dependent on our works it really doesn’t…

Daily Devotions

If you obey the commandments of the Lord your God that I am commanding you today, by loving the Lord … then you shall live and become numerous, and the Lord your God will bless you in the land that you are entering to possess.” vs. 16 Deuteronomy 30:15-18 Our faith ancestors cherished the book of Deuteronomy, and rightly so! It was carefully crafted to describe how Israel should behave as a nation–it was like their constitution. In this section…

Daily Devotions

For all who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.” vs. 11  Luke 14:1, 7-11 When Jesus went to the house of the leader of the Pharisees on the sabbath, Luke says that they were watching him closely–and he was watching them! And their behavior in choosing a place at the table triggered some choice comments from him about self-exaltation. Their culture, like ours, placed a huge premium on honor and people would go…

Daily Devotions

So I say to you, Ask, and it will be given you; search, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened for you.” vs. 9 Luke 11:5-11 Jesus, in teaching his disciples about prayer, does all that he can to assure them that God has an “open door” policy when it comes to interactions with those in need. Just as good parents can be counted on to give good things to their children, God will respond with…

Daily Devotions

For the Lord will again take delight in prospering you, just as he delighted in prospering your ancestors, when you obey the Lord your God by observing his commandments and decrees…” vss. 9b-10a Deuteronomy 30:9-10 The scribes of Israel believed that if the people obeyed the Lord by observing the Lord’s commandments and decrees, the Lord would take delight in bringing prosperity to the nation. The Lord would make Israel great again! We can understand why this was such a…

Daily Devotions

By contrast, the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against such things.” vs. 22 Galatians 5:18-25 Paul’s picture of kingdom living is timeless and seems too good to be true. How is it possible to live in community and experience such extraordinary fruits in ourselves and in others? He makes it sound so easy–all we need to do is become love-slaves of Christ, and the Spirit will…

Daily Devotions

You show me the path of life. In your presence there is fullness of joy; in your right hand are pleasures for evermore.” vs. 11 Psalm 16:7-11 We wouldn’t know it from the television and streaming programs we watch in our leisure time, but there is a good and decent way to live, and it is possible to find joy and pleasure in daily living. We don’t have to have one crisis after another and be so afraid that we…