Are you still crushed?

March 13, 2012

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

The LORD is close to the brokenhearted
and saves those who are crushed in spirit.
(Psalms 34:18 (NIV))

Take a serious look at your life. When did you accept Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior? I bet it was at a low point in your life! It is this low point in which many people turn to God. People discover that He is there and that He is someone to turn to who can help them in their hour of need. What is so amazing is that He will not leave you in your need. He will come into your life and guide you through the rough times and lead you to the place that He wants for you.

Consider this aspect of God. Most people are “friends” only when things are going well for you. The moment things start to go bad, they disappear. God is not like that. He is there no matter what you are going through. Perhaps He is there even before you go through the bad things, but you don’t notice Him until these times hit hard.

God is close to the brokenhearted, but He wants to be close to everyone. Perhaps the reason the crushed in spirit turn to Him is the simple fact that they long for a better place. They realize that the better place is available only through Him. Isn’t it comforting to know that the crushed in spirit can turn to God and not be rejected, especially when the world rejects them. There may be a mixed blessing within this truth. If the world rejects you, you are rejected by the prince of the world. If you are rejected by the prince of the world, you can turn to the Creator of this world for comfort.

The best part, once again, is that He will not leave you with a crushed spirit. He will transform you into the creation that He meant for you to be.

Are you still crushed?

Copyright 1998 – 2012 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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Will you be changed?

December 29, 2011

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed – in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet.
(1 Corinthians 15:51-52a (NIV))

The promise of salvation should be enough to encourage any believer and convert any non-believer, but the promise that is spoken of here is very encouraging. Not only do we have the assurance of salvation from our sins, but we also have the promise of not sleeping (i.e. death), but of being changed in the twinkling of an eye.

This change has caused much theological debate over the years. Some say that it is a physical resurrection, while others say that we are to be given spiritual bodies. One thing is certain. God has promised that we will be changed. Our current bodies are less than perfect and are full of sin. If we are to stand before God as His children, how can we stand there in our sin? We are to be given new life, not only spiritually, but physically. We will only desire to do what is right in the eyes of God, plus we will have heavenly bodies that will never die.

When God told Adam and Eve that they would surely die, the death that He spoke of was two-fold. Death can mean eternal separation from God. It also refers to the physical death. Before Adam and Eve allowed sin into the world, God did not mention that our days were to be numbered. Only since sin has been allowed in, has death actually been a constant subject.

We WILL be changed. Changed into what God had intended us to be all along. The change will come to only those who profess Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior.

Will you be changed?

Copyright 1998 – 2011 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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What do you look for and what do you seek?

October 31, 2011

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

Why does this generation seek a sign? Truly, I say to you, no sign shall be given to this generation.
(Mark 8:13 (RSV))

Do you seek signs from God?

In the days of Jesus, people wanted miraculous signs. They wanted something so grand that they would have no doubt about the origination of the sign. To be honest with you, I would not mind seeing such a sign myself !

The words of Jesus ring in my ears when I think that a sign would be great. They remind me that Jesus came not to bring people into salvation because it was an obvious choice from the physical perspective, but because they had the faith to believe. It is easy to believe when you see miraculous signs. Where is the faith in this? Faith requires much more. It requires believing in what you cannot see.

Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.
(Hebrews 11:1 (NIV))

If Jesus had given that generation miraculous signs, how long would they have believed? It may have lasted a few days, or even months, but, just like the Israelites in the desert, they would have begun to grumble and their faith would have faltered.

God wants us to have faith in Him.

Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,’ says the LORD Almighty.
(Zechariah 4:6b (NIV))

God wants us to know Him on a personal level, not on a level of might and power. The generation that Jesus spoke to was looking for the might and power when He was offering them the Lamb and the Spirit. They missed the greatest gift of all time simply because they had preconceived ideas of what to look for.

What do you look for in Jesus? What do you seek from Jesus?

Copyright 1998 – 2011 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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All authority

September 28, 2011

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.
(Matthew 28:18 (NIV))

What a strong and powerful statement! Think of the implications of such a statement.

Jesus had just been crucified. He had just been raised from the dead. He had appeared to many people since His resurrection. Think about the impact that this statement had on those who actually heard Him say it. Everything that they had ever feared about life and death had simply been erased. No one in history had ever died and came back to life. No one had ever been so brutally beaten and then mercilessly killed only to be found walking among the living three days later.

I can only imagine how His disciples felt when He showed Himself to be among the living. Not only did they see Him die, they knew how He died. Now, He was standing right in front of them saying that He had all authority in heaven and on earth. And the good news was, and still is, that it is true. The man who spent three years teaching them had proven that everything He had ever said was true. They became transformed by what they witnessed. They transformed the world by what they witnessed.

Think about that. What other group of people have ever transformed the world? Jesus started with twelve people. These people saw what happened. They knew it to be true. They knew that Jesus had been given all authority in heaven and on earth. They were willing to die for what they knew. If Jesus had not been given this authority, would those who followed Him be willing to die? We know what happened to His disciples during the crucifixion. They all scattered. A few days later they were all willing to die to spread the good news. They recognized holy authority. They recognized His authority within their lives. They willingly gave all that they were because of that authority. They gave not out of fear, but out of love.

Who has authority over your life?

Copyright 1998 – 2011 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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