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“Be strong and courageous.  Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.” 

-Deuteronomy 31:6

Power Struggle -  

This devotional was written by Kelly McFadden

 

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weakness so that Christ’s power may rest on me. — 2 Corinthians 12:8

 

Hanging in the Louvre Museum in France is an enormous painting called, “Coronation of Josephine.” This painting represents the royal celebration of the crowning of both Josephine and Napoleon. Adorned in velvet red robes, the ceremony called for Pope Pius VII to crown Napoleon as the emperor of France. However, rumors say that as the Pope held the crown to place it on the head of the new emperor, Napoleon grabbed the crown from the Pope’s hands and crowned himself. It is believed Napoleon did this to show he would not be subservient to the church.

 

Often in our Christian lives, we take the authority from God and crown ourselves as rulers of our own lives. Instead of putting God on the throne, we enthrone ourselves. Perhaps you report to church once a week, pray before meals, and sometimes sneak in a bedtime prayer before you fall asleep. But is Jesus really the Lord of your life? Do you seek his strength in all you do, or is that an afterthought? Do you make a decision hoping the Lord is taking notes, or do you look to Him first, asking for His guidance?

 

When you lose your focus on Christ and consider yourself the center of your universe, you are out of order. The stronger you think you are, the weaker you become. Don’t be like Napoleon who pretended he was working with the Pope and then at the last minute, snatched the authority and crowned himself. It is imperative to be a servant of Christ, the greatest servant who ever lived!

 

As the Apostle Paul wrote to the Corinthians: we have greater strength when we realize our weakness and rely on Christ.

 

GOING DEEPER:

1. What are ways you crown yourself?

 

2. How can you make sure Jesus sits on the throne in your life? Why is this essential?

 

FURTHER READING:

Matthew 10:39; Romans 6:10; 1 Timothy 6:15

This devotional originally appeared in “HomeWord with Jim Burns” on Crosswalk’s Family Devotional section. For more information about HomeWord with Jim Burns devotionals, please visit us online.

More of HomeWord with Jim Burns: http://www.crosswalk.com/devotionals/homeword/

SOMEONE IS WATCHING -  

In Lessons on Living

Lot also, who went with Abram, had flocks and herds and tents. Now the land was not able to support them, that they might dwell together, for their possessions were so great. . . . And there was strife between the herdsmen of Abram's livestock and the herdsmen of Lot's livestock. The Canaanites and the Perizzites then dwelt in the land. - Genesis 13:5-7

Whether we know it or not, people are watching us. One day as a woman was crossing the street at London Station, an old man stopped her. He said, "Excuse me, Ma'am, but I want to thank you." She looked surprised and asked, "Thank me?" He replied, "Yes'm. I used to be a ticket collector, and whenever you went by you always gave me a cheerful smile and a good morning. I knew that smile must come from inside somewhere. Then one morning I saw a little Bible in your hand. So I bought one, too, and I found Jesus."

Abraham was also very conscious that he was being watched. Problems had developed between his nephew, Lot, and himself. They came to possess so many sheep and cattle between them that the land was not able to support them all. It reached the point where the herdsmen of Abraham and the herdsmen of Lot began to quarrel over the best grazing lands. All the while, the Canaanites and the Perizzites, who lived in the land as well, were watching. Abraham knew that he represented Yahweh, the Lord God of heaven, before these pagan families. As a result, he immediately sought a way to bring peace to the situation.

Neither your church family nor your personal family are immune from problems. But how you choose to deal with those problems can encourage or hinder others who are watching. Your actions can even influence their eternal destiny. Always choose the way of peace. Let the God of peace rule not only in your heart but in all your relationships.

A family at peace is the best witness to the Lord of Peace.

Dr. Woodrow Kroll served as President and Senior Bible Teacher at Back to the Bible from 1990-2013. Author of more than 50 books, Dr. Kroll's passion is to increase Bible literacy in America by engaging people in the Bible and connecting them with the Author. His clear, incisive teaching of the Word keeps him in demand as a speaker all over the world. - See more at: http://www.backtothebible.org/authors/woodrow-kroll#sthash.7Yrcap6W.dpuf

More of Dr. Woodrow Kroll: http://www.backtothebible.org/devotions

WHOM DO YOU TRUST? 

BY CHARLES HADDON SPURGEON

In Morning and Evening

"Now on whom dost thou trust?" -Isaiah 36:5

Reader, this is an important question. Listen to the Christian's answer, and see if it is yours. "On whom dost thou trust?" "I trust," says the Christian, "in a triune God. I trust the Father, believing that He has chosen me from before the foundations of the world; I trust Him to provide for me in providence, to teach me, to guide me, to correct me if need be, and to bring me home to His own house where the many mansions are. I trust the Son. Very God of very God is He--the man Christ Jesus. I trust in Him to take away all my sins by His own sacrifice, and to adorn me with His perfect righteousness. I trust Him to be my Intercessor, to present my prayers and desires before His Father's throne, and I trust Him to be my Advocate at the last great day, to plead my cause, and to justify me. I trust Him for what He is, for what He has done, and for what He has promised yet to do. And I trust the Holy Spirit--He has begun to save me from my inbred sins; I trust Him to drive them all out; I trust Him to curb my temper, to subdue my will, to enlighten my understanding, to check my passions, to comfort my despondency, to help my weakness, to illuminate my darkness; I trust Him to dwell in me as my life, to reign in me as my King, to sanctify me wholly, spirit, soul, and body, and then to take me up to dwell with the saints in light for ever."

Oh, blessed trust! To trust Him whose power will never be exhausted, whose love will never wane, whose kindness will never change, whose faithfulness will never fail, whose wisdom will never be nonplussed, and whose perfect goodness can never know a diminution! Happy art thou, reader, if this trust is thine! So trusting, thou shalt enjoy sweet peace now, and glory hereafter, and the foundation of thy trust shall never be removed.

Devotions.org, a division of Back to Bible has a daily source of devotions to keep you in touch with God and His word, written by some of today's top authors and Bible teachers. Browse the variety of resources completely on their website. 

More of Devotions.Org: http://www.backtothebible.org/devotions

DON'T RUSH -  

BY MRS. CHARLES COWMAN

In Streams in the Desert

"Who is among you that feareth Jehovah, that obeyeth the voice of his servant? He that walketh in darkness and hath no light, let him trust in the name of Jehovah and rely upon his God" (Isa. 50:10, RV). 

What shall the believer do in times of darkness--the darkness of perplexity and confusion, not of heart but of mind? Times of darkness come to the faithful and believing disciple who is walking obediently in the will of God; seasons when he does not know what to do, nor which way to turn. The sky is overcast with clouds. The clear light of Heaven does not shine upon his pathway. One feels as if he were groping his way in darkness. 

Beloved, is this you? What shall the believer do in times of darkness? Listen! "Let him trust in the name of the Lord, and rely upon his God." 

The first thing to do is do nothing. This is hard for poor human nature to do. In the West there is a saying that runs thus, "When you're rattled, don't rush"; in other words, "When you don't know what to do, don't do it." 

When you run into a spiritual fog bank, don't tear ahead; slow down the machinery of your life. If necessary, anchor your bark or let it swing at its moorings. We are to simply trust God. While we trust, God can work. Worry prevents Him from doing anything for us. If our minds are distracted and our hearts distressed; if the darkness that overshadows us strikes terror to us; if we run hither and yon in a vain effort to find some way of escape out of a dark place of trial, where Divine providence has put us, the Lord can do nothing for us. 

The peace of God must quiet our minds and rest our hearts. We must put our hand in the hand of God like a little child, and let Him lead us out into the bright sunshine of His love. 

He knows the way out of the woods. Let us climb up into His arms, and trust Him to take us out by the shortest and surest road.--Dr. Pardington 


Remember we are never without a pilot when we know not how to steer. 

"Hold on, my heart, in thy believing-- 

The steadfast only wins the crown; 

He who, when stormy winds are heaving, 

Parts with its anchor, shall go down; 

But he who Jesus holds through all, 

Shall stand, though Heaven and earth should fall. 


"Hold out! There comes an end to sorrow; 

Hope from the dust shall conquering rise; 

The storm foretells a summer's morrow; 

The Cross points on to Paradise; 

The Father reigneth! cease all doubt; 

Hold on, my heart, hold on, hold out."

The public domain version of this classic devotional is the unabridged edition of Streams in the Desert.

Devotions.org, a division of Back to Bible has a daily source of devotions to keep you in touch with God and His word, written by some of today's top authors and Bible teachers. Browse the variety of resources completely on their website. 

More of Devotions.Org: http://www.backtothebible.org/devotions

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