Welcome! Let's Do Devotions Together!

Let's grow together!
Here's how God is using the daily readings from Jesus Calling to speak into my life.
What is He saying to YOU? Share it with someone & have a BLESSED day in Jesus!

Friday, December 9, 2016

Risky, Freak-me-out Faith

"Be willing to go out on a limb with Me. If that is where I am leading you, it is the safest place to be. Your desire to live a risk-free life is a form of unbelief...your attempts to minimize risk (keep you from) following Me wholeheartedly... relinquish your tendency to play it safe. My sovereign Presence protects you wherever you go." (360)
At times my own "risk-factor" can really puzzle me. For instance, I am willing to risk tasting a strange, new food, but less likely to risk some new hair-do.
Overall, I'm not especially fond of risking, even my parenting was geared more toward playing it smart and safe; only taking carefully calculated risks. However, taking a risk for God's glory was a whole other thing in our home. We applauded godly risks, viewing them as great opportunities to live out our faith.
Hebrews 11:6 says, “Without faith, it is impossible to please God.” God wants us to be risk-takers, but He does not want us to be risky fools. Knowing the difference is a risk-trick in itself!
Prayerfully letting Him guide us helps to determine if the risk is His idea!  Is it necessary? Is it worth it? Are there other wiser alternatives? Weighing all that out can help us determine whether the benefits of a risk will outweigh the liabilities.
For me, if the benefits are eternal, giving God glory, then I will more readily take the risk and step out on that "limb" with God-confidence. "Being confident of this, that He who began a good work in (me) will continue that good work until the day Jesus comes for (me.)" (Philippians 1:6)
With all that said, I honestly still prefer stepping on solid ground over climbing out on a limb. Limb-dwellers inspire me, yet baffle me, while others can just freak me out!
However, I was also pondering how fruit tends to grow... out on the limbs! That may be why limb-dwellers often enjoy a much more fruitful life! So, today, I will...
Risk it on the Limb....dmc

Risky, Freak-me-out Faith

"Be willing to go out on a limb with Me. If that is where I am leading you, it is the safest place to be. Your desire to live a risk-free life is a form of unbelief...your attempts to minimize risk (keep you from) following Me wholeheartedly... relinquish your tendency to play it safe. My sovereign Presence protects you wherever you go." (360)
At times my own "risk-factor" can really puzzle me. For instance, I am willing to risk tasting a strange, new food, but less likely to risk a slightly new hair-do.
Overall, I'm not especially fond of risking, even my parenting was geared more toward playing it smart and safe; only taking carefully calculated risks. However, taking a risk for God's glory was a whole other thing. We applauded godly risks, viewing them as great opportunities to live out our faith.
Hebrews 11:6 says, “Without faith, it is impossible to please God.” God wants us to be risk-takers, but He does not want us to take foolish risks. Knowing the difference is a risk-trick in itself!
Prayerfully letting Him guide us helps to determine if the risk is necessary, if it is worth it and if there are other alternatives. Weighing all that out can help us determine whether the benefits of a risk will outweigh the liabilities.
For me, if the benefits are eternal, giving God glory, then I will more readily take the risk and step out on that "limb" with God-confidence. "Being confident of this, that He who began a good work in (me) will continue that good work until the day Jesus comes for (me.)" (Philippians 1:6)
With all that said, I honestly still prefer stepping on solid ground over climbing out on a limb. Limb-dwellers inspire me, yet baffle me, while others just freak me out! But knowing that HE is Sovereign helps me remember that He So-Reigns, even when I'm asked to...
Risk it on the Limb....dmc

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Huge Hugs from Heaven

"Your needs and My riches are a perfect fit. I never meant for you to be self-sufficient. Instead, I designed you to need Me... I carefully crafted your longings and feelings of incompleteness, to point you to Me... (enabling) you to find intimate completion in Me." (359)
Just like our bodies will hunger for food, thirst for water or crave a good night's rest, our souls hunger to be spiritually fed and cared for, too. (After all, we are eternal spiritual beings having a temporary physical experience!)
So, when I am feeling drained and inadequate physically, I eat, drink or sleep...when I am feeling depleted and inadequate spiritually, I will hunger and thirst for righteousness, to be filled (Matthew 5:6.) My deep inner longing to be intimately connected to a Savior keeps me moving in the right direction... straight into the caring arms of Jesus!
So, I openly admit my neediness and embrace His abundance... all at the same time. With arms wide open it's like a huge, big...
Heavenly Hug...dmc

PS - Happy Birthday to our youngest son, Matthew Charles Colaw! You have been one huge, big hug from heaven to me, to your dad, your brother, your wife & family and to so many others! Thanks for your huge heart of love for Jesus and for being a huge, big blessing in all our lives!

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Beyond the Parade

"I am with you in all that you do, even in the most menial task...concerned with every detail of your life. Nothing escapes My notice...(so) learn to look steadily at Me in all your moments and all your circumstances. (Have) an uninterrupted awareness of My Presence. Fix your gaze on what is unseen, even as the visible world parades before your eyes." 2 Corinthians 4:18 (358)
Whoa...this is the most empowering way to live... aware of Jesus' steady gaze on "even the most menial" details of my life while I keep a steady gaze on Him even with this world's "parade" of concerns and distractions!
Eyes and ears, heart and mind tuned into Jesus... helps me capture a perspective that supersedes this broken, fallen world's "parade" that endlessly marches on and on around me!
Like you, I have many distractions, demands and disappointments parading around me and I have to intentionally look past the "visible parade" to regroup and renew myself by refocusing on Him.
Praising Him while the Band Marches On...dmc

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

The Heart of Christmas Worship

"Stay ever so close to Me... This is the most efficient way to stay on track; also the most enjoyable way... (however, beware of) a false sense of security, lulling the soul into a comatose condition... (rather) I search for...an awakened soul that thrills to the Joy of My Presence." (357)
During this Christmas Season we can certainly be lulled into a type of consumer-coma with the media's targeted emphasis on shopping, wrapping, decorating and endless food preparation. When I was in a store the other day, maneuvering crowded isles, my attention was drawn to the Christmas music in the background... "O Come Let Us Adore Him, Christ the Lord." Instantly, my heart was stirred and drawn back to the heart of Christmas and I had a moment of private worship.
Keeping Christ the focal point of CHRISTmas is the "on track" life I want to live! It helps my morale and my spirit to soar above the "on task" demands of consumerism, materialism and the rat-race that often sidetracks Christmas. I want my soul to be awakened to the Joy of Christmas, glorifying and...
Enjoying Christ The Lord ...dmc

Monday, December 5, 2016

The Hallelujah Holdup

"Let My Presence override everything you experience. Like a luminous veil of Light, I hover over you and everything around you...stay conscious of Me in each situation you encounter." (356)
The Presence of God makes such a huge difference in ANY situation! His Presence can be absolutely capturing! Maybe you have watched one of those Hallelujah flash mob clips where the distracted, chaotic atmosphere in a stadium or mall is radically changed by just one, then two, three and finally a whole choir of people singing the Hallelujah Chorus.  Even in such a non-sacred setting the Presence of God can overtake and finally overwhelm an entire crowd!
In this Christmas season we can easily be overtaken and overwhelmed by all the chaotic distractions that hold us hostage to a hectic pace, daily demands and various troubling issues. However, as Christians, we have a profound privilege... to personally experience a kind of divine holdup in the midst of hectic.  "Surely the Lord is in this place!" In this situation! In this encounter! In this moment!
I am praying that I become more and more aware of Him and that I keep Christ upfront and foremost in my CHRISTmas!
Hallelujah...dmc                                  

Sunday, December 4, 2016

Puzzled & Privileged

"My thoughts are not your thoughts; neither are your ways My ways. As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways and thoughts higher than yours." Isaiah 55:8-9 (355)
One of the most amazing privileges, as a believer, is to have access to the Master of Creation, the Answer for every problem and the Fulfillment of every need. Every concern has it's counterpart in the heart and mind of God. Like two pieces of a puzzle coming together, so it is when my dilemma meets up with Divinity!
Divine intervention fills in the gaps and graciously completes the picture. Being open to receive and willing to listen makes all the difference. I just need to let His Hand guide my life until piece by piece the puzzle pieces are locked into place and the picture of my life is His Divine Design! So, I will continue to believe even when I'm quite ...
Puzzled by the Puzzle...dmc

Saturday, December 3, 2016

Fare Well in Warfare

"Do not be surprised by the fiery attacks on your mind...don't let discouragement set in. You are engaged in massive warfare, spiritually speaking. The evil one abhors your closeness to Me, and his demonic underlings are determined to destroy our intimacy...call upon My Name...at that instant, the battle becomes Mine...simply trust Me as I fight for you." (354)
I can wholeheartedly support the validity of the above quote. I've experienced "fiery attacks"  and  discouragement.  However, I also know the awesome overcoming power of Jesus' Name!! I will ask for His help, then immediately start to thank Him for the victory, even before I FEEL victorious or the oppression lifts... because I know... Victory IS on the way!
We can fare well in warfare because...Jesus is still far better at warfare than the enemy is!
Practicing my Victory Dance...dmc

Friday, December 2, 2016

Pick Your Prince Wisely

"I am the Prince of Peace... When you keep your focus on Me, you experience both My Presence and My Peace... You need My Peace each moment to accomplish My purposes in your life... Walk with Me along paths of Peace; enjoy the journey in My Presence." (353)
Jesus is the Prince of Peace while satan is "the prince of this world." (John 12:31, 14:30) No matter how hard this world struggles to gain peace, it will never be achieved until satan is totally defeated and the Prince of Peace reigns. However, in the meantime, in my own life, I can allow the Prince of Peace to reign, setting up His Kingdom in my heart. What a difference He makes, allowing me to experience the purposes and plans His Peace brings!
No wonder satan does all he can to disturb and steal away our Peace...he does not want us to fulfill our destiny and bring to life the realities of our purpose.
Day by day, our path can be filled with Peace and Purpose...it just depends on which "prince" we journey with, listen to, focus on and allow to reign in our lives.
In the Presence of the Prince of Peace...dmc

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Tasting Eternal Reality

"I love you with an everlasting Love, which flows out from the depths of eternity...a Love that encompasses you from before birth to beyond the grave...being still in My Presence...enables you to experience My eternal Love. You need the certainty of My loving Presence in order to weather the storms of Life. During times of severe testing, even the best theology can fail you if it isn't accompanied by experiential knowledge of Me...(devote) time to developing your friendship with Me. " (352)
This reminded me of several passages of scripture.
First, John 17:3, "And this is life eternal, that they might know you the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent." Our eternal life is vitally linked to our relational life in Christ.
Second, Psalm 34:8, "Taste and see that the Lord is good: blessed is the man that trusts in Him." No matter how much we know ABOUT Him, we must relationally experience Him to really KNOW Him! Adding experience to our knowledge is much like the difference between enjoying a meal or just seeing a picture of it in a magazine. Many more sensory-receptor sites are stirred in the brain and what was once a concept becomes our new reality.
During this Christmas season, I pray we will pause to "taste and see" Him and His goodness all around us, stretching, stirring and satisfying our eternal souls.
Experiencing Jesus with all my senses makes a lot of GOOD sense...dmc