Sunday, December 31, 2017

The Daily Grace - Be Strong In The Lord

When we're in the middle of suffering, or when doubts start threatening our faith, what are our anchors? Where do we go to first or what do we do first? Whenever we feel odd, go to God first. Like the story of Joshua when he is in the middle of suffering, He said to him that He will always be with him and help him. God will do the same to us like what he did to Joshua.

He promised us that He will be with us wherever we will go. We need to be strong in His Name. Like the strength of an anchor, we cannot feel the stress of the storms in our lives. It is because an anchor is very strong and cannot be moved right away. He is our Anchor that keeps our spirit steadfast and sure while the billows roll.

Let us fasten to the Rock and Anchor which cannot be moved. Be grounded and firm in His love. Be strong in the Lord and take good courage. We need Him, the Anchor, to hold us secure in our spiritual storms. Although our faith may feel weak, if it's anchored in God's promises and presence, He will safely hold us.

Let Us Pray

Dear Lord, like Your reluctant prophet, we are inclined to love only those who love us. Yet You loved us even when we cared only for ourselves. Please give us the grace to be more like Jesus.

Take away from me the spirit of laziness, cowardliness, lust for power, and malicious and idle speech. But rather give me, throughout the day to come, an ample spirit of vitality and force in your service. This is for the benefit of your glory and the good of my fellow man.

Let me act in humility, patience, and decency at all times, seeing my own error and overlooking the faults of others. And let me always know the presence of Your Holy Spirit, to remind me of what I have asked. This is all I ask, in the name of my savior Jesus Christ.


Todays Godly Reminder - Amos 5:24

Let justice and fairness flow like a river that never runs dry. God loves justice. It is because fairness rule in it. And, peace rules in it. He want to see a mighty flood of justice, an endless river of righteous living. Let us show Him justice that peace is ruling, that surpasses all understanding.

Saturday, December 30, 2017

The Daily Grace - Rearview Mirror Reflections

I've always thought that you can see the hand of God best in the rearview mirror. Looking back, it's easier to understand why He placed us in the home that He did; why He brought certain people and circumstances into and out of our lives; why He permitted difficulties and pain; why He took us to different places and put us in various jobs and careers.

In my own life, I get a lot of clarity (though not perfect clarity - that's heaven's joy!) about the wise and loving ways of God as I reflect on the ways He has managed my journey by "the works of [His] hands" (Ps. 92:4). With the psalmist, it makes me glad and strikes a note of joy in my heart to see how often God has assisted, directed, and managed the outcomes so faithfully (Ps. 111). Looking ahead, though, is not always so clear. Have you ever had that lost feeling when the road ahead seems twisted, foggy, and scary? 

Before you move into next year, stop and look in the rearview mirror of the year gone by, and joyfully realize that God meant it when He said, "I will never leave you nor forsake you". So we may boldly say: "The Lord is my helper, I will not fear" (Heb. 13:5-6). With the promise of God's presence and help in mind, you can move ahead into 2018 with utmost confidence. God's guidance in the past gives courage for the future.

Today We Pray

Dear God, You are ushering in another year, untouched and freshly new. So, here I come to ask You, God, if You'll renew me too?  Please renew my mind and heart as I face another year.

Forgive the many errors, that I made yesterday. Let me try again dear God, to walk closer in Thy way. But Father, I am well aware, I can't make it on my own, so take my hand and hold it tight, for I can't walk alone.

Seek me out, and bring me home to Your fold again. Deal favorably with me according to Your good pleasure, until I may dwell in Your house all the days of my life. And, praise You forever and ever with them that are there.


Today's Godly Reminder - Psalm 92:4

"For You, O Lord, have made me glad by what You have done, I will sing for joy at the works of Your hands."

God made us so happy. He thrills us with all He had done for us! When we are seeing His work, let us shout for joy. It is because everything He does makes us so happy. His magnificent works are worthy to be praised. His thoughts are so profound. Let us sing joyfully unto the Lord.

Friday, December 29, 2017

The Daily Grace - He Leads Me

In Istanbul, Turkey, in 2005, one sheep jumped off a cliff and then nearly 1,500 others followed! In the end, about one-third of them died. Not knowing which way to go, sheep mindlessly follow other members of the flock. No better word picture than sheep can be found to illustrate our need for a trustworthy leader. We are all, Isaiah wrote, like sheep (Isa. 53:6). We tend to go our own way, yet we desperately need the sure direction of a shepherd. 

Psalm 23 describes the trustworthiness of our Good Shepherd. He cares for us (v. 1); He provides for our physical needs (v. 2); He shows us how to live holy lives (v. 3); He restores us, comforts us, heals us, and bountifully blesses us (vv. 3-5); and He will not abandon us (v. 6). What a comfort to know that God gently but firmly leads us! He does so through the urging of the Holy Spirit, the reading of His Word, and through prayer. God is the reliable leader we need.

In acknowledgment of our dependence on the Lord, we can say with the psalmist, "The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters". The Lamb who died to save us is the Shepherd who lives to guide us. Like sheep that sometimes wander from the flock in tangled paths of life to lose their way, that's the time we need our Shepherd's hand and a watchful eye to keep us always, lest we go astray.

Today We Pray

Dear Lord, You have brought me to the beginning of a new day. As the world is renewed fresh and clean, so I ask You to renew my heart with Your strength and purpose. Forgive me the errors of yesterday and bless me to walk closer in Your way today. 

This is the day I begin my life anew. Shine through me so that every person I meet may feel Your presence in my soul. Take my hand, precious Lord, for I cannot make it by myself. 

I pray that I may be blessed every step of my path this day by the great God of light. May Your sun shine upon me; as the moon moves the tide, may Your Spirit move my emotions with every grace and magic; may my heart sing with the voice of Your angels and my heart be warm; and may this and every blessed day You have given me be filled with joy.


Today's Godly Reminder - James 3:17

Receive God's wisdom today. God is not selfish to give you wisdom that comes from Him. In fact, He is the one who initiated to give us wisdom when we need it. He promised that if any of us need wisdom, we should ask God and it will be given to us. God is generous and won’t correct us for asking (James 1:5).

The wisdom that comes from God is first pure, morally and spiritually undefiled. Then, peace-loving, courteous and considerate. It is also gentle, reasonable and willing to listen. It is full of compassion and good fruits. It is unwavering, without self-righteous hypocrisy and self-serving guile. Ask and receive that wisdom today.

Thursday, December 28, 2017

The Daily Grace - Delay May Not Mean Denial

My son's birthdays are in December. When they were small, Angus quickly learned that if he didn't receive a longed-for toy for his birthday at the beginning of the month, it might be in his Christmas stocking. And if David didn't receive his gift for Christmas, it might appear for his birthday 4 days later. Delay didn't necessarily mean denial.

It was natural for Martha and Mary to send for Jesus when Lazarus became seriously ill (John 11:1-3). Perhaps they looked anxiously along the road for signs of His arrival, but Jesus didn't come. The funeral service had been over for 4 days when Jesus finally walked into town (v. 17). Martha was blunt.

"If You had been here", she said, "my brother would not have died" (v. 21). Then her faith flickered into certainty, "Even now I know that whatever You ask of God, God will give You" (v. 22). I wonder what she expected. Lazarus was dead, and she was wary about opening the tomb. And yet a word from Jesus, Lazarus' spirit returned to his decaying body (vv. 41-44). Jesus had bypassed simply healing His sick friend, in order to perform the far greater miracle of bringing him back to life. Waiting for God's timing may also give us a greater miracle than we had hoped for. Time spent waiting on God is never wasted.

Today We Pray

Lord, thank You for Your presence. Thank You for breathing life into me and everything around me. Help us to become more aware of Your presence and experience the glory of Your goodness everyday.

Fill me with Your Holy Spirit everyday, O God. I receive that inner freedom from Your hands. Let Your Holy Spirit also instil in my heart so that I can love You more each day.

I will repent all my sins to You. I can feel that You are coming soon. I am excited to meet You face to face and be with You forevermore.


Todays Godly Reminder - Proverbs 15:18


Keep calm and carry on. When you encounter difficult people, be a peacemaker. If you are a hot-tempered person, you will cause a lot of troubles around. But, if you are slow to anger and patient, you can calm disputes.

You will also appear contented if you don't lose temper that much. Show love to that person instead of hating back. It is okay to be angry, but in your anger, do not sin (Eph. 4:26). Handle temper carefully so that it will not stumble others.

The Daily Grace - Is Jesus Still Here?

Ted Robertson's home in Colorado was one of more than 500 destroyed by the Black Forest Fire in June 2013. When he was allowed to return and sift through the ash and rubble, he was hoping to find a precious family heirloom made by his wife - a tiny ceramic figurine of baby Jesus about the size of a postage stamp. As he searched the charred remains of their home, he kept wondering, "Is the baby Jesus still here?"

When our lives are rocked by disappointments and loss, we may wonder if Jesus is still here with us. The Bible's answer is a resounding Yes! "Neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come. . . shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord" (Rom. 8:38-39). In a corner of what used to be his garage, Ted Robertson discovered the burned remnants of a nativity scene and there he found the baby Jesus figurine undamaged by the flames. He told KRDO NewsChannel 13, "[We've] gone from apprehension to hope. . . that we're going to recover some parts of our life that we thought were lost". 

Is Jesus still here? He is indeed, and that is the everlasting wonder of Christmas. If you know Jesus, you'll never walk alone. When all around you is darkness and earthly joys have flown, Our Savior whispers His promise that He will never leave us alone.

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Today We Pray

Dear Lord, teach me to number my days aright, that I may gain wisdom of heart. Help me do today the things that matter, not to waste the time I have. The moments I have are precious, Lord, see that I count them dear.

Teach me to number my days aright. Fill me this day with Your kindness, that I may be glad and rejoice all the days of my life. Let me follow Christ's example, never to inflate myself with pride of status, of opinion, or of any of the gifts you have bestowed upon me.

Now, oh Lord, I pray that You may lift up the light of your countenance upon me, and give me peace; in my going out and in my coming in; in my sitting down and my rising up; in my work and in my play; in my joy and in my sorrow, in my laughter and in my tears; until that day comes which is without dawn and without dark. Let my hope and glory be ever in You, and not in my own vanity. This I ask in Christ's sake.


Today's Godly Reminder - Romans 8:38-39

I am sure that nothing can separate us from God’s love. Not life or death, not angels or spirits, not the present or the future. And, not powers above or powers below. Nothing in all creation can separate us from God’s love for us in Christ Jesus our Lord!

I’m absolutely convinced that nothing—nothing living or dead, angelic or demonic, today or tomorrow, high or low, thinkable or unthinkable—absolutely nothing can get between us and God’s love because of the way that Jesus our Master has embraced us. Continued to be convinced beyond any doubt about this Scripture. His unlimited love can never be separated from us, no matter how bad we are.

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

The Daily Grace - Out of Egypt

The Daily Grace - Out of Egypt

One year when our family was traveling through Ohio on the way to Grandma's house, we arrived in Columbus just a tornado warning was issued. Suddenly everything changed as we feared that our children might be in danger. I mention that story to help us imagine what it was like for Joseph's family as he, Mary, and their young child traveled to Egypt. Herod, not a tornado, threatened them as he sought to kill their little boy. Imagine how frightening it was for them, knowing that "Herod [sought] the young Child to destroy Him" (Matt. 2:13).

We usually take a more idyllic view of Christmas time - lowing cattle and kneeling shepherds in a peaceful scene. But there was no peace for Jesus' family as they sought to escape Herod's horror. Only when an angel told them it was safe did the family go out of Egypt and back home to Nazareth (vv. 20-23). Consider the awe we should feel for the incarnation. Jesus, who enjoyed the mastery of heaven in partnership with the Father, set it all aside to be born in poverty, to face many dangers, and to be crucified for us. Coming out of Egypt is one thing, but leaving heaven for us - that's the grand and amazing part of this story! Jesus came to Earth for us so we could go to heaven with Him.

Today We Pray

Dear Heavenly Father, I thank You for my life and everything You have bestowed upon me and upon all people, this day and every day. I thank You for the good and bad, the understanding of forgiveness, and Your holy power, without which we would have nothing. I thank You this day for all your blessings, your gifts, your never-ending love for us. 

Although we all are sinners, I ask You to forgive me every day for what I might have done wrong, that I might not have noticed. Even though we all come short of the glory of God, I thank You for the sacrifice of Your only son Jesus Christ for all our sins. You and only You know us Father and You know if our hearts are true.

So once again, I thank You with all my heart and soul. Support me all the day long of this troublous life, until the shadows lengthen and the evening comes, and the busy world is hushed, and the fever of life is over and my work is done. In the name of Christ I pray.


Today's Godly Reminder - Colossians 1:16

All that you see in this earth were created by Him. Everything! Whether it is invisible or visible, it is the work of the Lord. Whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities, all things were created and exist through Him. It is His great activity. 

It is all for Him. It is all about Jesus. It is giving praise to His Name. Praise Him for His wonderful creations!

Monday, December 25, 2017

The Daily Grace - In The Neighbourhood

It was the buzz of our neighborhood. A famous professional football player had moved in just two houses down from where we lived. We had seen him on television and read about his great skills on the field, but we never thought he would choose to reside in our neighborhood. Initially, our expectations were that we would welcome him into the neighborhood and we would all become great friends. But his life was obviously far too busy for any of us to get to know him personally.

Imagine this: Jesus - the Lord of the universe and Creator of all things - chose to dwell among us! He left heaven and came to this earth. As John says, "We beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father" (John 1:14). Jesus chose to become intimately involved with all who will come to Him. And, even more significant, for those of us who have received His redeeming love, the Holy Spirit has now set up residence in our hearts to comfort, counsel, convict, lead, and teach us. When you think of the Babe in the manger, remember how special it is that He not only moved into our "neighborhood" but that He did it so He could bless us with the intimate privileges of His residence within us. Take advantage of the gift of God's presence.

Today We Pray

Dear Heavenly Father, I sometimes feel as if I can’t go on. I am tired, I am weak, and I am worn. Thank You that You know my limits better than I do. 

Let me read Your Word until something new sinks in; let me pray until I hear Your voice, until all smugness has given way to gratitude. By the power of Your Holy Spirit, renew me afresh in Your Word and power, today and every day, energizing me in your great commission. In Your strength, I can find the enablement to endure. 

We give thee humble thanks for opening heathen lands to the light of thy truth; for making paths in the deep waters and highways in the desert; and for planting thy Church in all the earth. Grant, we beseech thee, unto us thy servants, that with lively faith we may labour abundantly to make known to all men thy blessed gift of eternal life. This is all I pray, through Jesus Christ our Lord.


Today's Godly Reminder - John 1:14

"The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth."

The Word became flesh and blood, and moved into the neighbourhood. We saw the glory with our own eyes, the one-of-a-kind glory. Like Father, like Son, who is generous inside and out. He was full of unfailing love and faithfulness. True from start to finish.

The Word became a human being and lived here with us. We saw his true glory, the glory of the only Son of the Father. From him, all the kindness and all the truth of God have come down to us. Let's give Him praise as we celebrate His birth!

Sunday, December 24, 2017

The Daily Grace - Amazing!

The Christmas story, recorded in Matthew and Luke, has become so familiar that I wonder if we grasp the reality of what actually happened: An angel told a young virgin that she would conceive a child by the power of the Holy Spirit (Luke 1:26-38). The angel then told her fiancee to marry her and name the baby Jesus, "for He will save His people from their sins" (Matt. 1:21). Shepherds saw angels in the sky and were told of a Savior's birth in Bethlehem (Luke 2:11). Wise men traveled hundreds of miles to worship the One who, they said, "has been born King of the Jews" (Matt. 2:2). Amazing!

Equally astonishing is that Mary, Joseph, the shepherds, and the wise men did exactly as they had been told. Mary yielded herself to God; Joseph took her home as his wife; the shepherds went to Bethlehem to find the baby in a manger; and the wise men followed the star. With no idea of the outcome, they all took the next step by faith in the Lord. Amazing! How is it with us this Christmas? Will we trust God and follow His leading even when we face uncertainty and overwhelming circumstances? When you and I obey the Lord, the outcome is truly amazing. As Oswald Chambers said, "Faith never knows where it is being led, but it loves and knows the One who is leading".

Today We Pray

Dear God, a child is born for us and a son is given to us. Your eternal Word streamed down from heaven in the silent watches of the night, and now Your Church is filled with wonder at the nearness of her God. Open our hearts to receive his life and increase our vision with the rising of dawn, that our lives may be filled with his glory and his peace, who lives and reigns forever and ever.

Help us remember the birth of Jesus, that we may share in the song of the angels, the gladness of the shepherds, and worship of the wise men. Close the door of hate and open the door of love all over the world. Deliver us from evil by the blessing which Christ brings, and teach us to be merry with clear hearts.

Grant, O God, that Your holy and life-giving Spirit may so move every human heart, that barriers which divide us may crumble, suspicions disappear and hatreds cease; that our divisions being healed, we may live together in justice and peace; through Jesus Christ our Lord.


Todays Godly Reminder - Psalm 121:5

The Lord will always keep you. He is your shade. He is always there at your side. He will never leave you.

Wherever you will go, He is always there. He is your Guardian. He will be right at your side to protect you. Shielding you from sunstroke, sheltering you from moonstroke. Do not be afraid.

Saturday, December 23, 2017

The Daily Grace - Work Heartily for the Lord

In everything that you do, your labor is not in vain when you work for the Lord. You will the peace and the guidance of the Lord if you work heartily in His Name. When you are not appreciated or not noticed, do not be dismayed! God wastes nothing. Every acts of service rendered for His glory are noted and has an eternal reward.

Blessings will come if you acknowledge God in everything. 'Coz He is the author of our life and He is the one who put you in that position. As long as you are working for the Lord, everything will just follow. Do not get tired or weary. Do not give up!

God knows your heart. He knows every details of your life. Give thanks to Him in everything that you do. It is a great feeling when you're working for the Lord and not for men. You will feel complete satisfaction and security. You feel complete when God is in your heart.

Today We Pray

Dear Lord Jesus, You are indeed the Light of the world. John told the people to prepare for You when You were very near. As Christmas grows closer day by day, help us to be ready to welcome You now.

You always welcomed little children when You walked on this earth. Teach me to have a childlike trust in You. Help me to live in the knowledge that You will never abandon me.

As we celebrate Your birth, may we begin to see the world in the light of the understanding You give us. As You chose the lowly, the outcasts, and the poor to receive the greatest news the world had ever known, so may we worship You in meekness of heart. May we also remember our brothers and sisters less fortunate than ourselves in this season of giving.


Today's Godly Reminder - Isaiah 9:6

For a child has been born—for us. The gift of a son—for us! He’ll take over the running of the world. His names will be: Amazing Counselor, Strong God, Eternal Father, Prince of Wholeness. His ruling authority will grow, and there’ll be no limits to the wholeness he brings.

This Christmas Eve, let us remember the reason for this season. May we celebrate His birth today with joy and love in our hearts. Let us thank the Lord that He gave His Son for us. Let us also spread the love to our family and friends today. Merry Christmas to all!

Friday, December 22, 2017

The Daily Grace - Remember the Wrapping

At our house, some Christmas events are the same each year. Among them is my mother's appeal to my cousins as they attack their gifts: "Save the paper, we can use it next year!" My mother loves to give nice gifts, but she also appreciates the wrapping. Presentation is part of the beauty of the gift.

It makes me think of the wrapping Christ chose when He came as a redemptive gift to rescue us from our sinful selves. Jesus could have wrapped Himself in a  mind-boggling show of power, lighting up the sky with His presence in a celestial show of glory. Instead, in a beautiful reversal of Genesis 1:26, He chose to wrap Himself "in the likeness of men" (Phil. 2:7).

So, why is this wrapping so important? Because, being like us, He is no stranger to our struggles. He experienced deep loneliness and the betrayal of a dear friend. He was publicly shamed, misunderstood, and falsely accused. In short, He feels our pain. As a result, the writer of Hebrews tells us that we can "come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need" (Heb. 4:16). When you think of the gift of Jesus this Christmas, remember to keep the "wrapping"in mind! Don't disregard the wrapping of the best Christmas gift of all.

Today We Pray

Lord, thank You for Your presence. Thank You for breathing life into me and everything around me. Help us to become more aware of Your presence and experience the glory of Your goodness everyday.

Fill me with Your Holy Spirit everyday, O God. I receive that inner freedom from Your hands. Let Your Holy Spirit also instil in my heart so that I can love You more each day.

I will repent all my sins to You. I can feel that You are coming soon. I am excited to meet You face to face and be with You forevermore.


Today's Godly Reminder - Philippians 2:7

"Rather, He made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness."

Think of yourselves the way Christ Jesus thought of himself. He had equal status with God but didn’t think so much of himself that he had to cling to the advantages of that status no matter what. Not at all. When the time came, he set aside the privileges of deity and took on the status of a slave, became human! Having become human, he stayed human. It was an incredibly humbling process. He didn’t claim special privileges. Instead, he lived a selfless, obedient life and then died a selfless, obedient death—and the worst kind of death at that—a crucifixion.

Thursday, December 21, 2017

The Daily Grace - Just the Right Time

The conductor stood on the podium, his eyes scanning the choir and orchestra. The singers arranged the music in their folders, found a comfortable position for standing, and held the folder where they could see the conductor just over the top. Orchestra members positioned their music on the stand, found a comfortable position in their seats, and then sat still. The conductor waited and watched until everyone was ready.Then, with a downbeat of his baton, the sounds of Handel's "Overture to Messiah" filled the cathedral.

With the sound swirling around me, I felt I was immersed in Christmas - when God, at just the right moment, signaled the downbeat and set in motion an overture that started with the birth of the Messiah, the "High Priest of the good things to come" (Heb. 9:11). Every Christmas, as we celebrate Christ's first coming with glorious music, I'm reminded that God's people, like choir and orchestra members, are getting ready for the next downbeat of the conductor when Christ will come again. On that day, we will participate with Him in the final movement of God's symphony of redemption - making all things new (Rev. 21:5). In anticipation, we need to keep our eyes on the Conductor and make sure we are ready. The advent of Christ celebrates His birth and anticipates His return.

Today We Pray

Dear Lord, thank You for wrapping Yourself in our likeness! Remind us that You understand our struggles and that we can confidently take advantage of the mercy and grace You offer to make us victorious. May Your spirit guide me to seek Your Loving presence more and more.

God is not foreign to my freedom. Instead the Spirit breathes life into my most intimate desires, gently nudging me towards all that is good. I ask for the grace to let myself be enfolded by the Spirit.

May the Passion of Christ be ever in my heart. May Your law and your goodness guide my every thought, O Lord. And, may the power of your Holy Spirit flow through my words and my actions today, and always.


Today's Godly Reminder - 2 Corinthians 9:15

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The Apostle Paul describes Jesus as the "Indescribable Gift" that God has given to the world. How do we describe this "Incredible Gift" that God has given to a dying world? The Apostle Paul says "we can't" because God's love is a love that is not only "Indescribable", but also unexplainable! God offered this "Indescribable Gift" to the world over 2,000 years ago and again today, "The Sovereign God," is making that same offer/plea to the hearts of men, women, boys and girls around the world.

Have you heard God calling you to open up your heart to receive His "Indescribable Gift" called Jesus? I know He is calling you. When you hear His voice, harden not your hearts is what He is saying to you. Salvation by grace through faith alone is what's being offered on today by this "Indescribable Gift" called "Jesus" to those who would believe and receive Him on today. Indeed, Jesus is the gift that the human mind cannot fully grasp, but yet we must believe in Him! Apart from this gift, we are all hopeless, lost and sitting in the dark awaiting destruction.

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Today We Pray

Dear Lord, the skies are telling of Your glory and the wonders of Your love. Thank You for making the sacrifice that has secured my freedom, salvation and eternal life. I look with hope to the day when my knowledge of your glory will never be hidden by the concerns of the world.

Forgive me for all the time I spend with my face bent to the things of earth, Your Spirit ignored and forgotten. May I learn to love You in a way that honors the love You have shown me. Let me know you every moment of time, forever.

I thank You for you are always there, willing to show yourself to me and guide me and comfort me. Burn your love on my heart. Let me be on fire in serving You and loving You.


Todays Godly Reminder - Habakkuk 2:3

Are you waiting for something to happen? Do you feel any delay in your requests? Even though it delays, wait patiently for it. God is just practicing your patience.

Your requests will certainly be granted. It will certainly come; it will not delay. If it seems slow in coming, wait. It’s on its way. It will come right on time. 

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

The Daily Grace - Significant Surrender

Throughout history, Mary the mother of Jesus has been held in high esteem. And rightly so! She was singled out by God to deliver the long-awaited Messiah. But before we get lost in the significance of her life, let's take a look at what it meant for her to surrender to the assignment. Living in a small backwater Galilean village where everyone knew everyone else's business, she would have to live with the perceived shame of her premarital pregnancy. Explaining to her mother the visits of the angel and the Holy Spirit probably didn't calm things down. To say nothing of the devastating interruption that her pregnancy would bring to her plans to marry Joseph. And while we are thinking about Joseph, what would she tell him? Would he believe her?

In light of these personal ramifications, her response to the angel who told her the news about her role as Jesus' mother is amazing: "Behold, I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word (Luke 1:38). Her words reminds us that a life of significance is most often preceded by a heart eager to surrender to God's will regardless of the cost. What significant experience does God have in store for you? It starts with surrender to Him. Surrender to God precedes His significant work in your life.

Today We Pray

Dear Lord, let me feel Your loving arms wrap me tightly in the warm embrace of Your endless love. Teach me to make choices about my time, to remember what is important this season and to say “no” whenever my “yes” would take me away from Your peace. Fill me with patience, love and a sense of humor. 

I pray for those who are beginning to know Christ: may You strengthen them on their journey. I pray for all children, and for those who take care of them, especially those who awaken them to faith. I pray for the ill and those who are ending their lives in loneliness: Oh Lord, give them the strength they need.

Remind me of Your deep love for me and let the fire of that love be something I can share with everyone around me. I pray that the fire of Your Spirit may renew the energies of all Your saints and enable us to welcome those who do not know You. And finally, Lord, may Your Church be constantly renewed, in prayer, in Your Word and in Your worship; in Christ's name, this I ask.


Today's Godly Reminder - 1 Peter 5:6-7

Be reminded that you must always be humble in everything you do. If you're not, it has a negative impact to others, especially to your character impression. God will be exalted if you will be humble in His Name, depending on Him. Tell Him all your anxieties, too. God cares for all of us, God has our back.

Monday, December 18, 2017

The Daily Grace - The Heart of Christmas

Charles Dickens' novel A Christmas Carol was released on December 19, 1843, and has never been out of print. It tells the story of Ebenezer Scrooge, a wealthy, sour, stingy man who says, "Every idiot who goes about with 'Merry Christmas', on his lips, should be boiled with his own pudding!" Yet, one Christmas Eve, Scrooge is radically changed into a generous and happy man. With great humor and insight, Dickens' book captures the universal longing for inner peace.

As a young man, the apostle Paul opposed Jesus and His followers with a vengeful spirit. He "made havoc of the church, entering every house, and dragging off men and women, committing them to prison" (Acts 3:8). But one day he encountered the risen Christ, and his life became a different story (Acts 9:1-16).

In a letter to Timothy, his son in the faith, Paul described that life-changing event by saying, even though he was "a blasphemer, a persecutor, and an insolent man. . . the grace of our Lord was exceedingly abundant, with faith and love which are in Christ Jesus" (1 Tim. 1:13-14). Jesus was born into our world and gave His life so that we can be forgiven and transformed through faith in Him. This is the heart of Christmas! A change in behavior begins with Jesus changing our heart.

Today We Pray

Dear Lord, let my heart rejoice and be glad in this time of prayer. Remind me often of the great blessings You have bestowed on me. Instill in my heart a desire to know and love you more each day.

Let me read Your Word until something new sinks in. Let me pray until I hear Your voice, until all smugness has given way to gratitude. By the power of Your Holy Spirit, renew me afresh in Your Word and power, today and every day, energizing me in Your great commission. 

Eternal God, heavenly Father, You have graciously accepted me as a living member of your Son our Savior Jesus Christ. And, You have blessed me with the grace of forgiveness through the sacrifice He made for me and for all people. Send me now into the world in peace, and grant me strength and courage to love and serve You with gladness and singleness of heart; through Christ our Lord.


Today's Godly Reminder - 1 Timothy 1:14

His amazing, unmerited favor and blessing is overflowing. It is joined together with the faith and love which are realized in Christ Jesus. Grace mixed with faith and love will be poured over us and into us. This is all because of Jesus.

Christ Jesus our Lord was very kind to us. He has greatly blessed our lives with faith and love just like His own. Oh, how generous and gracious our Lord was! He filled us with the faith and love that come from Christ Jesus.

Sunday, December 17, 2017

The Daily Grace - Jesus at the Center

Have you heard of the "Christocentric Principle" of biblical understanding? Simply put, it means that everything we know about God, angels, Satan, human popes, the whole universe is best understood when viewed in relationship to Jesus Christ. He is at the center.

Recently, I discovered that one of the less familiar Old Testament books, Zechariah, is one of the most Christocentric. This book is a good example because it speaks of Christ's humanity (6:12), His humility (9:9), His betrayal (11:12), His deity (12:8), His crucifixion (12:10), His return (14:4), and His future reign (14:8-21). One especially meaningful passage is Zechariah 12:10, which says, "Then they will look on Me whom they pierced". The piercing refers to Israel's historic rejection of Jesus as Messiah - resulting in His crucifixion. But this verse also predicts a future generation of Jews who will accept Him as their Messiah. At the second coming of Jesus, a remnant of Israel will recognize the crucified One and turn to Him in faith.

This marvelous book should encourage us to look for more Christ-centered truths - both in other parts of the Bible and in all of life. Keep Jesus in the middle of everything. Live a Christocentric life. Jesus Christ is the Key that unlocks the Word of God.

Today We Pray

Dear Jesus, I come to You this morning in this season of waiting for the feast of Your birth, to ask Your blessing on myself and all those in the world who wait for You. We wait now for Your return, as the Jews of old waiting for their Messiah. Yet now, we have the Holy Spirit to comfort us.

Help us not to be impatient, Lord Christ. But to wait as You have told us, showing the fruits of the spirit in every thought and work: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. And let us always have complete confidence in Your return.

Blessed are You, loving Father, for all Your gifts to me and those close to me. Blessed are You for giving my family and friends to be with me in times of joy and sorrow, to help me in days of need, and to rejoice with me in moments of celebration. Blessed are You for ever and ever.


Today's Godly Reminder - Psalm 119:11

In order for you to keep from sinning, treasure and store His Word in your hearts everyday. "Read your Bible, pray everyday, and you will grow". It is true. Once you start to savor His Word, it will become a habit. Not just a mere habit, but your lifestyle. Have a good and godly lifestyle by reading on His Word.

Once you are filled with His Spirit by having His Words in your heart, sin will live no more in your lives. You are free in the Name of Christ. No weapon formed against you shall prosper (Isaiah 54:17). Keep and remember His Word wherever you will go. His promises never fails.

Saturday, December 16, 2017

The Daily Grace - Stirring,Searching, Humbling

Christmas cards and nativity scenes depict the wise men visiting the Christ-child. But, I think the story is bigger than the way it's presented. The wise men's journey is also a pattern for our spiritual journey. "We saw his star", the astrologer-astronomers said (Matt. 2:2). That star, sent by God, initiated their quest to find Him. Like them, I believe our own spiritual journey begins with such a stirring (John 6:44) - perhaps through a crisis or just a sense that there must be more to life than this.

"We saw his star", they say, "and we have come". After the stirring comes a searching. And what a search the wise men made! They may have traveled by foot for nearly a year to get to Jerusalem. What's more, upon arrival, they had to go against the directives of a Roman-appointed king known for his brutality (Matt. 2:7-16). Few of us today pay such a price to search for God. But people still search, even if it's just by buying a self-help book promising the secret to finding 'something more'.

We "have come to worship him". After the stirring and the searching comes a humbling. In a defiant act against Herod (the self-proclaimed "King of the Jews"), their Persian kings (traditionally crowned "King of Kings") and their religion, the wise men bowed to Jesus (v. 11). This final stage of the journey for us is key, as it judges the results of our search. Does the spirituality we find call us to self-fulfillment alone, or to self-surrender? Does it lead us to ourselves or to Someone greater? Does it cause us to worship humanity or to bow before God? I'm convinced that if our spirituality doesn't cause us to bow to Jesus, who the wise men found, it's not big enough to accept.

Today We Pray

Dear Lord, give ear to my prayer. Attend to the voice of my supplications. In the day of my trouble, I will call upon You, for You will answer me.

As I spend these days waiting to celebrate Your birth, give me the grace to greet You without suppressed sighs of weariness. Grant me the spirit of generosity; let me open my front door to You, without any thought of inconvenience. Let me work every teaching and commandment You gave us, let me know Your love and share it abundantly with all I may meet, remembering throughout this time Your message and example of long-suffering love and infinite patience.

The Lord bless us and keep us. The Lord make his face to shine upon us, and be gracious unto us. The Lord lift up his countenance upon us, and give us peace, this day and evermore.