Are you thankful to be called a Christian?

April 10, 2018

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Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living

However, if you suffer as a Christian, do not be ashamed, but praise God that you bear that name.
(1 Peter 4:16 (NIV))

Have you ever faced anything simply because you are a believer in Jesus?

Perhaps I should ask if you have ever been in a situation where you would have suffered if it was known that you were a Christian? Think about that for a moment as you answer the following. Did you withhold the fact that you were a Christian or did you deny that you were a Christian? There is a difference! Regardless of how you handled yourself in that situation, do you regret not standing up and identifying as a follower of Jesus? Do you feel that you have abandoned Jesus through your actions and words?

Consider Peter.

He denied Jesus three times during the events between Jesus being arrested and being taken to Pilate. All of us can put ourselves into the events and justify the actions that Peter took that night. In all honesty, it is not told in detail how Peter truly felt. We can only imagine what Peter was facing within himself as these events transpired and afterward. What we do know is that after the resurrection, Jesus asked Peter three times if he loved Him. Peter was able to put his shame behind him and accept the grace that Jesus was extending to him.

Think about that!

Peter denied Jesus three times. He had seen Jesus beaten so badly that He was not recognizable. Peter had seen Jesus crucified, dead and buried. The guilt of his denial of Jesus must have been unbearable. Even after Jesus arose, what was Peter thinking? Was he thinking that Jesus would never forgive him for what he had done? Was Peter thinking that he had committed something so bad that he would be condemned to suffer for all eternity?

Grace is amazing!

What Peter did discover is that Jesus forgave him. Three times he was asked if He loved Jesus and three times he responded that he did. I can almost imagine that with each response Peter gave Jesus, the burden of guilt was being lifted until it was completely gone!

That is what Jesus does! He lifts the burden of guilt and replaces that burden with a joy that comes from knowing that all of your sins are forgiven! There is nothing greater to give thanks for.

Are you thankful to be called a Christian?

Copyright 1998 – 2018 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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God’s NOT Dead!

April 3, 2014

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

When there is moral rot within a nation, its government topples easily. But with wise and knowledgeable leaders, there is stability.
(Proverbs 28:2 (NLT))

Moral rot within a nation!

Stability?

I am sure that each of us have our own opinions of these two simple statements. I am also sure that each of us would like to see things differently. As the Body of Christ. we should all long for righteousness. We should all long for peace and stability.

Are we so far removed from God’s law that we, as a nation, cannot turn from our moral rot? Can we find the righteousness that we long for? Can we, as the Body of Christ, do anything?

I honestly pray that this is able to be turned. I honestly pray that we seek after righteousness in all that we do. According to the media, and the normal entertainment venues, as well as many in the government, we are not a nation that seeks after God’s own heart.

I believe.

No, I know that there is a very strong voice for righteousness still alive in this country. When we see televisions shows such as Duck Dynasty, which is openly Christian, in the top of the ratings, there is hope. When we see a movie that no one thought would draw an audience continually break attendance records and continually add more theaters, then we as the Body of Christ are loudly proclaiming that God’s NOT Dead!

We have to take a stand for what is right in the eyes of God. We must seek after righteousness and not give in to the world.

We must continually seek God in all that we do.

Our nation, and the world, is not lost. God loves impossible odds!

Think about that for a moment.

What are the odds that the son of a carpenter would fulfill all of the prophesies? What are the odds that a person could be violently killed and in three days be raised from the dead? What are the odds that twelve men of simple birth could proclaim the Gospel in such a way that two thousands years later it is still impacting the lives of people and bringing salvation?

We don’t know what the future holds. We do know that Jesus will return. We do know that many of the signs are indicating that this is very close. We also know that God is not slow in keeping His promises. He does not wish any to perish.

Still, in the world today, we have extreme moral rot. We do not have stability. We do not have righteousness in our society. That does not mean that you cannot have an impact on one person and that one person will have an impact on another person, and so on.

Where there is life, there is hope. Where there is hope, faith matures. When faith matures, we see wonderful things unfold.

God’s NOT Dead!

Copyright 1998 – 2014 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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