Devotions

Freedom to Set Others Free

“It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.” – Galatians 5:1 After being released from slavery, the Apostle Paul followed in the way of his parents and became a very zealous student of Jewish law. However, he studied under Gamaliel, who happened to be the most influential rabbi of the day. In modern terms, saying that you were a student of Gamaliel would be like saying you were mentored by an astrophysicist who was a student of Albert Einstein.  Interestingly, while he was very much orthodox, Gamaliel’s rabbinic convictions paralleled those of Jesus in that he believed in loving your neighbor, and he taught that your neighbors were both Jews and Gentiles. This is where Saul’s convictions diverged. While his rabbi was fully invested in loving the Romans, he was bent on

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The Power of Rhema

“Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, “This is the way; walk in it.” – Isaiah 30:21 The fourth and final faith seed I would like to share is — never forget the power of rhema. In the Bible, “word” is referred to by two different words. Logos is the first word we are familiar with, and rhema is the second word. Whenever the word of God or any other word is spoken aloud, it is called a rhema word. In the Greek language, it can also mean “a spoken word,” “an utterance,” or “a saying.”  In the book of James, we are told that whoever has control over their tongue brings control over their whole body. What if that’s true? I like the idea that if all of my words are controlled, then the whole of my

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One Ounce of Discipline

“Whoever heeds discipline shows the way to life, but whoever ignores correction leads others astray.” – Proverbs 10:17 There is a third faith seed that I would like to share with you today! Seed number three — recognize the law of two pains. According to American author and entrepreneur Jim Rohn, “We must all suffer from one of two pains: the pain of discipline or the pain of regret. The difference is discipline weighs ounces while regret weighs tons.” We have all experienced both in our lives, and regret is by far the most painful. It would be better if you said it according to the old: An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. We can say that one ounce of discipline can wipe out a pound of regret if you do it right. You don’t have to be a vicious ninja or a fierce samurai warrior

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Don’t Procrastinate

“A sluggard’s appetite is never filled, but the desires of the diligent are fully satisfied.” – Proverbs 13:4 I would like to add a bonus faith seed to the mix today! The first seed we planted was: Don’t feel guilty about negative emotions. It is imperative that you identify them by name and take authority over them. The next Biblical seed we sowed yesterday: New feelings come with new actions! Making a connection between negative feelings and positive actions is possible. The bonus seed for today is: Don’t procrastinate! Make sure you don’t procrastinate on your idea. Do not procrastinate on sharing your gifts and callings with the world. Now is the time to act!  Many of you would say I struggle with procrastination in various areas of my life. You may say I’m a master of procrastination. I’m good at it and can teach a class on it. Here’s

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Take Authority Over It

“Jesus called his twelve disciples to him and gave them authority to drive out impure spirits and to heal every disease and sickness.” – Matthew 10:1 I’m excited because I’ve been sharing that faith is a seed of the Word of God that needs to be planted in order to bring about change. To encourage you, I’ll share four faith seeds over the next few days! I’ll start with the biggest one — don’t feel guilty about negative emotions. It is important that you identify them by name and take authority over them. We often feel guilty about experiencing envy, lust, ego, or anger. Feeling guilty about them is pointless. Keep in mind that you haven’t done anything yet, right? It is a feeling, a thought, and it is emotional.  In our guilt-driven world, we think that, “I wouldn’t feel these emotions if I were a truly godly person.” My

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Your Mind Has to Be Strong

“For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline” – 2 Timothy 1:7 Yesterday, I encouraged you to never forget that God has great thoughts and plans for you! Allow His thoughts to determine your future and your reality. It’s no secret that the worst decisions that we’ve made in life were emotional ones. It’s something we all intuitively know because we’re all humans, and we all experience it the same way.  Every time we said something mean, we were emotional. There is a great deal of emotion involved in not being present when we should have been. As you and I both know, if you are not where you want to be, it’s usually because of an emotional issue. So here’s how we become better: We become better by understanding that our minds have to be stronger than our feelings.

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The Wise Way to Live

“Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” – Colossians 4:5,6 Over the past few days, I have been discussing the state of the human heart as Jesus described it to the Pharisees. As a result of what’s happening in their emotional lives, the Pharisees are incapable of participating in the kingdom of God, due to their pride, ego, and fear, which is actually self-sabotage. This is not my first time saying this, and it is not my original idea, but we are not thinking beings who feel, we are feeling beings who think.  What does that mean? Most often, we feel something first, then employ our thoughts to defend our position as an attorney would defend us. That’s not a wise way

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It’s What You Do

“What do you think? There was a man who had two sons. He went to the first and said, ‘Son, go and work today in the vineyard.’ ’‘I will not,’ he answered, but later he changed his mind and went. Then the father went to the other son and said the same thing. He answered, ‘I will, sir,’ but he did not go.” – Matthew 21:28-30 I am amazed as I continue to reflect on the human heart. Today, I would like to look at the parable of the two sons. After the above passage, Jesus asks his disciples, “Which of the two did what his father wanted? ” The first son said, I will not, but afterward, he changed his heart and went. After the second son said he would, he decided not to. Perhaps that day, he chose to be a sports fan and watch the NFL, baseball,

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A Line of Authority

“Jesus entered the temple courts, and, while he was teaching, the chief priests and the elders of the people came to him. ‘By what authority are you doing these things?’ they asked. ‘And who gave you this authority?’ ” – Matthew 21:23 As powerful, authentic, and impactful as Jesus’ ministry was on earth, you would wonder why the religious leaders of his day would question His authority. As Jesus teaches in the temple courts, He engages in a debate with the Pharisees. Many amazing miracles have been performed by Him, and people have been healed and raised from the dead. The blind can see, the deaf can hear, and sinners are running back to God’s kingdom! In His presence, hearts are transformed, chains are broken, and yet, the Pharisees ask Him, “Where did you receive your ordination?” The passage speaks of authority, but I believe this refers to the Hebrew

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What Faith Is

“The apostles said to the Lord, ‘Increase our faith!’ He replied, ‘If you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it will obey you.’ ” – Luke 17:5-6 Here’s what faith is — it’s a seed, not an event, feeling, emotion, or even saying, “I believe!” I emphasized yesterday that it’s a seed of faith, the seed of the Word of God, that changes your life. The seed of faith is something you plant. It either grows or dies, and if it lives, it is cultivated until it is fully mature, and then it is harvested. As a matter of fact, seeds can destroy mountains and tear bricks, marbles, and diamonds in half. It is possible for seeds to do anything they want, but they must be nurtured, planted, and not devoured. This is

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