Daily Devotion

  • Exposed by The Light

    "Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them. For it is shameful even to speak of the things that they do in secret. But when anything is exposed by the light, it becomes visible, for anything that becomes visible is light …" Ephesians 5:11-14

    There’s a company that cleaned carpets, and this company offered a special cleaning service for homes with pets.  And usually people say the same thing.  They say, “Well, we really don’t need this service.  Our pet is completely housebroken.  And if there ever is a mess, we get it completely clean.”

    That’s when a technician from the carpet-cleaning company breaks out his secret weapon.  He darkens just one room of the house, and he turns on a powerful black light that causes urine crystals to grow brightly.  To the horror of the homeowner, every drop, every dribble, instantly comes into view.  And it comes into view not only on the carpets, but usually also on the walls, the drapes, the furniture, even on lampshades. 

    Now, the truth is, the offense was there all the time, but it was invisible until the light exposed it.  Here’s what Jesus said in John 3:19-20: “And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil. For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his works should be exposed.”

    God’s light exposes.  God’s light exposes the sin in our lives.  It exposes the things that we think are hidden.  It exposes the things we would rather not think about, or talk about.

    I go back and think about that carpet-cleaning company.  It would have been cruel for that carpet-cleaning company to show customers their problem under that black light, and then to say, “Hey, that’s too bad for you,” and then just to go on.  The purpose of the light was to expose what was there, so that the home could really be cleaned.

    In the same way, Jesus doesn’t shine His light on us just to make us feel guilty, or just to make us feel bad, or just to make us feel defeated.  He doesn’t leave us in our darkness, and in the dirt and filth of our sin.  He shines His light on us, so that He can truly make us clean.  The Bible says, “…when anything is exposed by the light, it becomes visible, for anything that becomes visible is light...”  This is something that the light of Jesus does that natural light can never do.  When Jesus’ light exposes our sin, it also has the power to cleanse us from our sin.

    Have a great day, and keep moving forward!

  • Reality of the Resurrection

    "Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain." 1 Corinthians 15:58

    Imagine the mystery and delight of not just hearing, but seeing the story of Jesus for the first time, almost as an eyewitness. That's what happened to a tribe in the jungles of East Asia, when missionaries showed them the Jesus film. Not only had these people never heard of Jesus, they had never seen a motion picture. Then, all at once, on one unforgettable evening, they saw it all -- the gospel in their own language, visible and real.

    Imagine again how it felt to see this good man Jesus, who healed the sick and was adored by children, held without trial and beaten by jeering soldiers. As they watched this, the people came unglued. They stood up and began to shout at the cruel men on the screen, demanding that this outrage stop.

    When nothing happened, they attacked the missionary running the projector. Perhaps he was responsible for this injustice! He was forced to stop the film and explain that the story wasn't over yet, that there was more. So they settled back onto the ground, holding their emotions in tenuous check.

    Then came the crucifixion. Again, the people could not hold back. They began to weep and wail with such loud grief that once again the film had to be stopped. The missionary again tried to calm them, explaining that the story still wasn't over, that there was more. So they composed themselves and sat down to see what happened next.

    Then came the resurrection. Pandemonium broke out this time, but for a different reason. The gathering had spontaneously erupted into a party. The noise now was of jubilation and it was deafening. The people were dancing and slapping each other on the back. Christ is risen, indeed!

    Again the missionary had to shut off the projector. But this time he didn't tell them to calm down and wait for what was next. All that was supposed to happen -- in the story and in their lives -- was happening.

    The reality of the resurrection: if you believe it happened, it will truly change the way you live. 

    Some distinctions of those who live in light of the resurrection are listed in 1 Corinthians 15:58…

    1.     Be steadfast

    2.     Be immovable

    3.     Always abound in the work of the Lord

    4.     Know that your labor is not in vain

    In the end, God will reward your faithfulness through the inheritance you have in Christ Jesus.

    Keep this in mind as you go through your day. But remember most of all that Jesus Christ has already been steadfast, immovable, and has accomplished the work of salvation on your behalf. Praise God for the wonderful Savior that we have!

    Have a great day, and keep moving forward!

  • Keep Your Fork

     So is it with the resurrection of the dead. What is sown is perishable; what is raised is imperishable. It is sown in dishonor; it is raised in glory. It is sown in weakness; it is raised in power. It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body.  1 Corinthians 15:42-44

    A woman was diagnosed with a terminal illness and had been given three months to live.  As she was getting her things in order, she contacted her pastor and asked him to come to her house to discuss some of her final wishes.

    She told him which songs she wanted sung at her funeral service, what Scriptures she would like read and what outfit she wanted to be buried in.  She requested to be buried with her favorite Bible. 

    As the pastor prepared to leave, the woman suddenly remembered something else.  "There's one more thing," she said excitedly. 

    "What's that?" said the pastor. 

    "This is important," the woman said.  "I want to be buried with a fork in my right hand." The pastor stood looking at the woman, not knowing quite what to say. 

    The woman explained.  "In all my years of attending church socials and potluck dinners, when the dishes of the main course were being cleared, someone would inevitably lean over and say, 'Keep your fork.'  It was my favorite part of the meal because I knew something better was coming – like velvety chocolate cake or deep-dish apple pie.”

    “So when people see me in that casket with a fork in my hand and they ask, 'What's with the fork?' I want you to tell them: ‘Keep your fork.  The best is yet to come!’”

    As Christians, we understand that the best is yet to come! In 1 Corinthians 15, Paul details the differences between the mortal bodies that we have now and the immortal bodies that we will receive in the resurrection. There will be nothing that can harm us, and we will be in God’s eternal presence as His bride. Thank God for the hope we have in our future glorification as resurrected people!

    Have a great day, and keep moving forward!

  • Living in God's Light

    “…for at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light…”  Ephesians 5:8

    I heard a story about a little boy who attended a church with beautiful, stained-glass windows in the auditorium.  The stained-glass windows portrayed the faces of four men.  Every Sunday, when the sermon became boring, or when the little boy just lost his train of thought and couldn’t pay attention to the preacher anymore, he would start looking at those windows. He could see the morning sunlight as it came through those windows, lighting up the men’s faces.  Under one picture, the caption read “Saint Matthew.”  Under the second, it said “Saint Mark.”  The third and fourth had the captions “Saint Luke” and “Saint John.”

    And then, one day in Sunday school, the boy’s teacher asked the question, “Boys and girls, what is a saint?” And the little boy knew instantly.  He raised his hand.  The teacher pointed at him and said, “What’s your answer?”  He said, “Saints are the people that the light shines through.”

    That’s what it means to be a saint.  That’s what it means to be saved.  If you’ve been saved, you’re a saint, and if you’ve been saved, the light of Jesus will shine through you.  The Bible says, “You were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord.”  Understand this: Jesus Christ has not only turned the light on for us, but He has turned on the light in us, so that His light shines through us. 

    Is your life darkness, or is it light?  There’s a temptation, when we’ve been saved, to go back to living our lives with the light dimmed.  But Jesus says that if He has touched our lives, He has transformed our lives, so that we can shine His light in the darkness.  The Bible tells us that God’s light transforms, and so walk in the light.

    Have a great day, and keep moving forward!

  • Authority

    And they were all amazed, so that they questioned among themselves, saying, “What is this? A new teaching with authority! He commands even the unclean spirits, and they obey him.’ ” Mark 1:27

    For decades, everyone living within five or six miles of a hat factory in Denver, Pennsylvania, set their clocks and their watches by the sirens the factory set off five days a week.

    At precisely 5:30 a.m., the wake-up siren would begin the day. Then came the starting siren at 7:00 a.m., the lunch siren at noon, and the quitting siren at 5:00 in the afternoon.

    When that siren went off, people in the area would check their watches and clocks. If their timepiece was a few minutes fast or slow, they’d adjust it accordingly.

    Eventually, the siren system was disbanded. One man in the town was reminiscing with the timekeeper about his job. “What did you use,” he asked, “to determine the exact time?”

    With a twinkle in his eye, the timekeeper reached into his pocket and pulled out a child’s Mickey Mouse watch!

    We don’t want to live our lives following a Mickey Mouse authority.

    Authority is power.

    Authority is rulership.

    Authority is something or someone that profoundly influences and governs our lives.

    According to the Bible, Jesus alone has the authority to be Lord of your life and my life.

    Have a great day, and keep moving forward!

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