The Best Piece of Advice

“One person gives freely, yet gains even more; another withholds unduly, but comes to poverty.” – Proverbs 11:24 Hannah and I were having a conversation with our good friend from Australia, Earl Larmar, who is a wonderful man. He’s an accomplished and successful businessman, worship leader and organist, who also has the gift of generosity. We are thankful to have him as our Chairman of the Board for Hour of Power Australia. During a meal, Hannah asked him the best piece of advice he could give to younger people today to do well in life. The first thing he said was, “Have enthusiasm and be outgoing,” which he was quoting from Dr. Norman Vincent Peale’s book, “The Power of Positive Thinking.” Secondly, Earl said you realize in life that so many of the wins that you have are just won by a nose. In a horse race, he said, you’ll

Read More »

Follow God for the Reward

“Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.” – Colossians 3:24-25 Have you ever asked yourself, “Should I follow God for the reward?” I’ve been asked this question before, and the answer is, “Yes, of course!” There are so many references to the reward in the Bible. In Malachi, God tells us that there is a reward for tithing. In Deuteronomy, God states there’s a great reward for those who follow the commands, including full barns, and healthy flocks; you’ll be above and not beneath, the head and not the tail. In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus uses the word “reward” over and over. In Western thinking, there is a concept that implies we have

Read More »

Vulnerability in Relationships

“See to it, then, that the light within you is not darkness. Therefore, if your whole body is full of light, and no part of it dark, it will be just as full of light as when a lamp shines its light on you.” – Luke 11:35,36 Today, I want to sum up our discussion of discipline and secrecy and how it deepens our walk with God. Allow me to offer you two practical steps you can take to employ the power of secrecy in your own life and in your relationships, both with Jesus and others. First of all, when you do something really great for someone else, keep it a secret. If you’ve never done this before, I encourage you to give it a try. Give a gift to a friend or a stranger, serve in some capacity, or volunteer for a day, but don’t tell anyone. When

Read More »

The Gift of Generosity

“A generous person will prosper; whoever refreshes others will be refreshed.” – Proverbs 11:25 We discussed the importance of secrecy and reward yesterday, and we concluded that it’s acceptable to be motivated by Heavenly blessing and reward when we choose to relate to Jesus privately, without the attention or confirmation of others. Today, I want to go a step further and suggest that public giving and ministry are not entirely without blessings. I get up and pray in front of the crowd several times in my church, and this isn’t a bad thing. Jesus’ ministry had a highly public face, and He was always teaching and praying for people. This was a major blessing, but He also made sure to set aside specific times to talk to His Father since that was the ultimate reward; He needed those energizing moments to keep moving forward in His mission. Individuals have given

Read More »

An Ambassador for Him

“I am sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves.” – Matthew 10:16 If there’s one thing I’ve learned in my life, it’s that Jesus is a good Father. He prepares us by training and equipping us so that we are never unprepared for life’s fights and problems. In Matthew 10, for example, Jesus commissions his disciples to carry on the work of His Kingdom in the same way that He has modeled it to them. He gives them the power to banish demons and heal the ill, but He also warns them. He warns them that they will be like sheep among wolves when they venture out. I don’t know about you, but that wouldn’t make me feel very safe, and it certainly wouldn’t get me enthused about the travel. The caution, on the other hand, comes with a

Read More »

Keep Your Pole in the Water

“Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” – Galatians 6:9 As a kid, I spent a lot of time fishing. This wasn’t always because I wanted to, but it so happens that it was one of my dad’s favorite activities, so we were out on the boat a lot. Sometimes my Grandpa Schuller got in on the action, and the three of us would spend hours chewing the fat and waiting for the fish to bite. Of course, being a child, those stretches often felt interminable, and sometimes it seemed as if there just weren’t any more creatures in the sea. However, if we sat there long enough, inevitably there would be a bite on someone’s line, and the excitement in that moment made the long process worthwhile. Like anything in life, a

Read More »

What’s Your Harvest?

“Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows.” – Galatians 6:7 Now more than ever, it’s important to remember that as Christians, we are seed planters. The Bible says that we will reap what we sow, and while this is often looked at in a negative context, it’s much more powerful when we consider the positive. We recently talked about Joseph of Arimathea, and his life is a perfect example of what happens when we plant seeds of selflessness and sacrifice, despite it being unpopular, costly, or risky. While everyone else walked away from Jesus, even His disciples, Joseph clung to his Lord, pulled the nails out of His wounded hands, wiped the blood and sweat from His now-cold brow, and dressed His body for burial. He gladly offered what he assumed would be a final act of sacrifice for the One he so

Read More »

Surrendered, Sacrificial Faith

“Joseph of Arimathea, a prominent member of the Council, who was himself waiting for the kingdom of God, went boldly to Pilate and asked for Jesus’ body.” – Mark 15:43 I love the story of Joseph of Arimathea. If you’ve been in church for any length of time, you probably know that he was the man who asked Pilate for Jesus’ body and took it off the cross to bury in his own family tomb. Strangely enough, he was a member of the Sanhedrin — the group of Jewish zealots that put Jesus to death — and although he didn’t support His Savior’s crucifixion, he felt helpless to stop it, so he did what he could to demonstrate his love. In remembering why his actions were such a big deal, it’s important to note that crucified victims were typically hung naked and at eye-level so that everyone who passed by

Read More »

Receive your daily eDevotional

Don't miss new updates in your email!