Do you complain or argue?

October 29, 2010

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

Do everything without complaining or arguing
(Philippians 2:14 (NIV))

We are never satisfied!

Think about that statement. There is an extreme amount of truth in those words. We are constantly seeking something that we don’t have. We want more, and when we don’t get it, we complain or we argue. Take a serious look inward and think about what makes you complain or argue. If you are like me, then it is probably the insecurity and the emptiness that we all feel. There is a void that we long to fill. When we don’t get it filled, we complain and argue. If we look for perfect love through our relationships, then we will be disappointed. If we look for fulfillment through our jobs, then we will be disappointed. If we look for happiness in our material possessions, then we will be disappointed. Everything of this world will leave us short of what God intended. He has so much more planned for us.

To claim what He has planned, we simply must place our faith in Jesus. We must also place our hope in things that are of God and not of this world.

For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
(Matthew 6:21 (NIV))

If we place our hope and our hearts in things that will disappoint us, then we are setting ourselves up to complain. If we focus on Jesus and the hope that He brings, then we can simply realize that what disappoints us is not important. It is at this point that our whole life comes in to focus. We no longer have a need to complain or argue. We keep our eyes focused on the prize and not the obstacles along the way. This shows a sign of spiritual maturity, for you are able to realize that each moment is quickly gone and the next moment brings hope for something better.

Place you hope in Jesus. Allow the Holy Spirit to mature you. Do everything without complaining or arguing.

Copyright 1998 – 2010 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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How long?

October 28, 2010

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

When he opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slain because of the word of God and the testimony they had maintained. They called out in a loud voice, “How long, Sovereign Lord, holy and true, until you judge the inhabitants of the earth and avenge our blood?” Then each of them was given a white robe, and they were told to wait a little longer, until the number of their fellow servants and brothers who were to be killed as they had been was completed.
(Revelation 6:9-11 (NIV))

Do you ever ask “How long?”

Even those who are faithful unto death ask that very same question.

Patience is a virtue and it will eventually provide a reward. If you wait upon what God has put into motion, then you will not be disappointed. He will reward the faithful in His own time even though it seems like an eternity to our limited understanding.

To him who overcomes and does my will to the end, I will give authority over the nations–
(Revelations 2:26 (NIV))

We must stand firm in our faith. Even when the plans of God do not unfold at the pace that we desire, we MUST stand firm in our faith. Even when all around us in chaos, we MUST stand firm in our faith for the salvation of the souls of the lost rely on God’s timetable. Would we want God to hurry if it meant that someone we love would be eternally lost?

The next time you find yourself asking God “How long,” remember His heart. He does not want any to perish.

Copyright 1998 – 2010 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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Seek God’s face – Pray!

October 27, 2010

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.
(2 Chronicles 7:14 (NIV))

In just a few short days, we will have an opportunity to take part in an act that too many seem to have taken for granted. The legal citizens of this nation will be able to vote. We will be able to send a message to those whom we have elected in the past and to those whom we will elect on that day. We have the opportunity to make changes or to let our elected officials know that we want more of the same.

I am sure that each and every person of voting age in this country firmly believes in what they want to happen. I would like to throw a curve ball at you and ask you to think about not what you would want to happen, but what God would want to happen. Do you think that they are the same? Do you think that your desires are much better than what God desires?

I would like to post a challenge to each and every single person.

Pray !

Pray for discernment. Pray for wisdom. Pray for guidance. Pray for God’s Will in this election. Pray for God’s Will in your lives. Pray for the forgiveness of our sins, both as a nation and individually. Pray for repentance. Pray for peace.

Pray that God will bless this nation because we have chosen to return to Him and we choose to bless Him.

Lately, I have seen bumper stickers that upon first read seem to be unpatriotic, but upon further contemplation, they are exactly what God desires. I am sure that you may have seen them as well. “God bless every nation.”

I firmly believe that we, as a nation, were founded to be a blessing to the nations. We have opened our arms to receive people from every nation, people who were seeking freedom. To many, that freedom has meant freedom to worship God as they see fit. Lately, it seems that this freedom is more a freedom to do whatever you desire, whether it is right or wrong.

With this in mind, pray that we may seek God’s face and turn from our wicked ways. Pray that we will be willing to humble ourselves and seek God in all that we do.

Pray !

Copyright 1998 – 2010 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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What knowledge do you possess?

October 26, 2010

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

This is what the Lord says, he who made the earth, the Lord who formed it and established it – the Lord is his name: Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.
(Jeremiah 33:2-3 (NIV))

Have you ever wanted to know the secrets of the universe? Have you ever wanted to know things that were beyond your ability to comprehend? Let’s face it. It is human nature to be curious.

Perhaps God had a reason to make us that way for he knew that we would search for answers to things that we did not understand. Perhaps that is why humanity has spent most of its existence searching for God. We do not understand Him, so we search for the answers that we feel are beyond our understanding. With this curiosity comes a price. We have a tendency to make things more complicated than they are. We want to “understand” complex things, so we tend to take things and make them more complex. Such is the case with knowing God. Many people feel that they have to work hard and achieve this relationship through their own doing. God made it simpler, much simpler than that. All we have to do is accept the grace and mercy that He has freely given to us through His Son, Jesus Christ. When we call to Him through Jesus, He grants us wisdom if we will accept it. He grants us untold mercy. He grants us a knowledge of salvation that we did not have before. That is the greatest knowledge that we can possess.

What knowledge do you possess?

Copyright 1998 – 2010 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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Are you willing to face persecution for your faith?

October 25, 2010

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
(Matthew 5:10 (NIV))

We are all ridiculed and persecuted about something. For some, they are forever taunted and tormented because they don’t have the latest clothes and gadgets. Others are tormented by people in society because they speak differently than those around them. Some are persecuted because of their skin color. People are picked on because they are too tall or because they are too short. Unfortunately, people are mocked and persecuted for any number of things that are beyond their control.

With all of the mindless persecution in the world, why would anybody deliberately choose to do something that would attract even more persecution?

Righteousness is a choice. It is a choice of faith. When we choose to follow the things that are of God, we have made a choice to turn our backs upon the world and to embrace the things that the world rejects. If we choose to reject the world, then we literally are deciding to open ourselves up to persecution, for people persecute those who are against themselves.

You adulterous people, don’t you know that friendship with the world is hatred toward God? Anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God.
(James 4:4 (NIV))

If we are to be persecuted, then we must decide our cause for which we will face persecution. Righteousness and faith are a choice. We can face temporary persecution from people for having the faith to accept God’s grace and mercy, or we can face eternal persecution because we rejected God’s grace and mercy. It is a matter of perspective.

Are you willing to face persecution for your faith?

Copyright 1998 – 2010 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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How do you see God?

October 22, 2010

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

At these words the Jews were again divided. Many of them said, “He is demon-possessed and raving mad. Why listen to him?”
But others said, “These are not the sayings of a man possessed by a demon. Can a demon open the eyes of the blind?”
(John 10:19-21 (NIV))

It is interesting that all throughout history people have been so divided by Jesus. You either acknowledge Him as Lord and Savior or you vehemently deny Him and claim Him to be insane. It happened when He walked the earth. It happens to this day.

Therefore God exalted him to the highest place
and gave him the name that is above every name,
that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,
in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord,
to the glory of God the Father.
(Philippians 2:9-11 (NIV))

One day, everyone will know exactly who He is. One day, those who claim His Lordship will rejoice. One day, those who claim Him to be insane will weep.

Why are the hearts of some people closed to the idea that Jesus is the Son of God? Do they reject God or do they reject the idea that God came to earth as one of us? If they reject God, then we must pray for them, for they are truly lost. If they reject the idea of God coming to earth, then they don’t understand the very nature of God. Too many people see God as the ultimate in corporal punishment and not the ultimate in grace and mercy. Only grace and mercy would be willing to live, suffer and die as one of us.

How do you see God? That will play a big part in how you see Jesus. Is Jesus a man possessed by a demon or does He have all authority over everything, including demons?

Copyright 1998 – 2010 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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Sacrificial love

October 21, 2010

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.
(1 John 4:10 (NIV))

Who is the one person in your life that you love the most? Perhaps it is more than one person. If you have children, then you are probably in this category of having multiple people that you truly love. You are not alone.

What would you do to save them from certain death? Would you be willing to sacrifice your own life in exchange for their life?

That is exactly what God was able to do for the people that He loves the most!

God sent His Son, Jesus, who was God made man, to give His life for those that He loves the most. You are probably thinking that Jesus came as an atoning sacrifice for anyone and everyone. That is correct. You have discovered who God truly loves. He loves everyone so much that He was willing to make the ultimate sacrifice for each and every one of us.

Who is it that you love the most? Multiply that by the largest amount that you can imagine and then multiply that by the number of people who have ever lived or will ever live. You still will not begin to fathom the amount of love that God has for those whom He loves.

Who is it that God loves the most?

Copyright 1998 – 2010 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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