God’s gift to us is amazing . . . grace!

December 9, 2016

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
(John 3:16 (NIV))

Have you ever thought about this passage as a Christmas passage?

We have been given the ultimate gift through God’s love for us. When a gift is given, someone has to pay the price. It is free to the recipient, but the one who gives the gift takes it upon themselves to pay the full cost no matter what that cost may be.

For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
(Romans 6:23 (NIV))

for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
(Romans 3:23 (NIV))

When was the last time that you took it upon yourself to give good gifts to several people? I am sure that it cost you a considerable amount, yet, you willingly paid the price so that you could freely give the gifts that you gave. Jesus willingly paid the cost needed to give grace and mercy to every person who has ever lived. That cost was more than we could bear just for our own sins, yet Jesus took all the sin of the world upon Himself for our sakes.

In this time of year that we celebrate the birth of Jesus, we must never lose sight of the reason that Jesus was born. It is at this time of year that we see the innocence of a baby, but we must not forget about the power and authority of Jesus as King of kings and Lord of lords.

Merry Christmas!

Copyright 1998 – 2016 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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Don’t let pride force you to accept your wages

May 19, 2014

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
(Romans 12:23 (NIV))

Which would you rather receive – wages for all of your labors or a gift greater than what you could ever work to achieve?

No matter how simple the answer to that question may seem, there will always be those who refuse to accept a gift so great. They say things like “It is too good to be true,” or “There is no such thing as a free lunch.” They may even say things like “I don’t want anything that I can’t earn for myself.” Part of me wants to respect these people for they want to work for what they have. This is an honest character trait that is admirable, however, there needs to be a balance. It is too easy to allow pride to take the place of honest labor.

Pride !

Once again it raises its ugly head. Pride is able to build lots of things, but it can also destroy things of great value. Are you too proud to accept a free gift from the maker of all things? Are you too proud to admit that there is something that you are not capable of achieving on your own? Are you too proud to shout out to God that you are not capable of attaining His ideal for your life? Pride can be that sin that separates us from God. It is that character trait that will convince you that you earn the wages that are due to you and not the grace that is freely given to you.

Don’t allow pride to blind you to the free gift that is yours simply because you haven’t earned it. No one has earned it. No one is capable of earning it. No one can receive wages sufficient enough to pay for it. It is freely given but cannot be purchased.

Open your heart to the gift. Don’t let pride force you to accept your wages.

Copyright 1998 – 2014 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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Call upon the only means of salvation

February 25, 2014

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

And God spoke all these words:
“I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery.
“You shall have no other gods before me.
(Exodus 20:1-3 (NIV))

Let’s face it. No matter how hard we try, we probably break this commandment every single day of our lives. We may think that we place God first and that we have no other gods before Him, yet, how often have you placed something as more important than spending time with God? How many times have you thought of your finances as being able to take care of you? How many times have you longed to be with someone? All of these, and more, have the potential of becoming a god if you focus on them too much.

God has stated that He does not want us to place anything above our relationship with Him. If we do, then it is a sin.

For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
(Romans 6:23 (NIV))

We all sin every single day, and we have only looked at the first commandment. God has said that we cannot come into His presence as a sinner. If we do not go into God’s presence, then we are cast into the lake with Satan.

Look closely at your heart and call upon the only means of salvation, Jesus Christ, for

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.
(John 3:16-18 (NIV))

Copyright 1998 – 2014 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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Are you still a servant to sin?

October 17, 2013

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

The rich rule over the poor,
and the borrower is servant to the lender.
(Proverbs 22:7 (NIV))

Do you owe anyone anything?

Are they pressing you for payment?

I know that in today’s society, it is impossible to do anything without owing someone. You need to have a job to earn money to live off of. In order to get to work, you have to have a car. Most people have to borrow money to buy a car. You need someplace to live. you either rent because you are borrowing a place to live, or you pay monthly payments because you borrowed money to buy a home. I could go on and on.

Is this biblical? Are we borrowing against our future and paying it back over time so that we become indebted to those whom we borrowed from?

If we plan our personal budgets, we can make it work, but what happens if we over borrow? Can we go on borrowing and never expect to pay it back?

Think about this from a different perspective.

for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
(Romans 3:23 (NIV))

For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
(Romans 6:23 (NIV))

If we have all sinned and the wages of sin is death, then all of us, until we accept Jesus, are living on borrowed time!

Think about that. Humanity, in its sinful nature, owes a debt that we could only pay with our lives.

Jesus paid that debt for all who would simply ask for forgiveness of their sins. Jesus is now that one that we are indebted to. We should be proclaiming this wonderful gift of grace every moment of every day. We are no longer bound by our indebtedness to sin and death. Our debt has been paid. Jesus has set us free.

Are you still a servant to sin?

Are you living on borrowed time?

Copyright 1998 – 2013 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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How do you look upon God and His gifts?

April 3, 2013

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

When Simon saw that the Spirit was given at the laying on of the apostles’ hands, he offered them money and said, “Give me also this ability so that everyone on whom I lay my hands may receive the Holy Spirit.”

Peter answered: “May your money perish with you, because you thought you could buy the gift of God with money! You have no part or share in this ministry, because your heart is not right before God. Repent of this wickedness and pray to the Lord. Perhaps he will forgive you for having such a thought in your heart. For I see that you are full of bitterness and captive to sin.”
(Acts 8:18-24 (NIV))

Does Simon sound like anyone that you know?

Far too many people think that God can be “bought” just like a valuable item in a store. God and His grace are not for sale! They are the most precious item that you can possess, but they are not yours for any amount of money. God gives of Himself freely to any and all who simply ask with sincerity and honesty. In fact, God gave of Himself so freely that He sent His only Son, Jesus, to die as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. This salvation is priceless, yet it is free!

Do not be ensnared by those who try to put a monetary amount on God. He does not value things that way that humanity values things. All of the worldly wealth will fade into dust, yet, the things of God are eternal. Do not attempt to gain the eternal through the worldly.

How do you look upon God and His gifts?

Copyright 1998 – 2013 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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