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The Word For Today

Principles for Living

Observe: (1) You can have more, as long as you don't want it all for yourself. In a generation whose motto is 'Look out for number one,' we need to be reminded that 'Christ did not please himself' (Romans 15:3 NIV). He didn't live to enrich Himself, but to enrich others. You won't find a speck of selfishness in Him. He's worthy to be called 'Master', because He first mastered Himself by denying Himself and living for others.

(2) You can get almost anything done, as long as you don't care who gets the credit. 'Whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus.' Pride brought Satan down and it will bring you down, too. Ivan O Miller quoted, 'Humility is such a frail and delicate thing that he who dares to think that he has it, proves by that single thought that he has it not.' When you succeed and the accolades start coming your way, enjoy them briefly. Then pass them on to the true source of all your accomplishments - God.

(3) You can hasten the answer, as long as you don't despise the source. Naaman the leper discovered that you can have what God offers, but on God's terms, not yours (2 Kings 5:1-14). And God's terms are 'faith' and 'obedience'. Faith is like electricity: you don't have to analyse or understand it to enjoy its benefits. All you have to do is plug in! What has God told you to do? Obey Him! Stop wavering, stop procrastinating, stop arguing with Him and do what He tells you. You'll love the results.

Soulfood : Deut 3-4, Mk 3:23-35, Ps 2, Prov 11:22-23

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Principles for Living

Observe: (1) You can have more, as long as you don't want it all for yourself. In a generation whose motto is 'Look out for number one,' we need to be reminded that 'Christ did not please himself' (Romans 15:3 NIV). He didn't live to enrich Himself, but to enrich others. You won't find a speck of selfishness in Him. He's worthy to be called 'Master', because He first mastered Himself by denying Himself and living for others.

(2) You can get almost anything done, as long as you don't care who gets the credit. 'Whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus.' Pride brought Satan down and it will bring you down, too. Ivan O Miller quoted, 'Humility is such a frail and delicate thing that he who dares to think that he has it, proves by that single thought that he has it not.' When you succeed and the accolades start coming your way, enjoy them briefly. Then pass them on to the true source of all your accomplishments - God.

(3) You can hasten the answer, as long as you don't despise the source. Naaman the leper discovered that you can have what God offers, but on God's terms, not yours (2 Kings 5:1-14). And God's terms are 'faith' and 'obedience'. Faith is like electricity: you don't have to analyse or understand it to enjoy its benefits. All you have to do is plug in! What has God told you to do? Obey Him! Stop wavering, stop procrastinating, stop arguing with Him and do what He tells you. You'll love the results.

Soulfood : Deut 3-4, Mk 3:23-35, Ps 2, Prov 11:22-23

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Looking in the Right Mirror!

 

The world's best fashion designers are concerned with the total look of the models they send down the catwalk. They must have perfect accessories and the right hairstyle, make-up, etc. And it's the same with God. He created you as a whole person with specific features, personality traits, and emotional strengths. He designed you to be a vibrant, thinking, feeling and fully-functioning human being with your own unique attractiveness. But He endowed you with more than just physical appearance. He gave you talents and spiritual gifts - inner qualities He wants you to develop and use for His purposes.

What you are on the inside should determine how you see yourself on the outside. When your looks determine your worth, a few extra kilograms can wipe you out; so can magazine covers that trumpet beauty without character. You're looking in the wrong mirror! The Bible says, 'Don't be concerned about the outward beauty of fancy hairstyles, expensive jewellery, or beautiful clothes. You should clothe yourself instead with the beauty that comes from within...' (1 Peter 3:3-4 NLT). When your self-worth comes from God instead of people, you can wear a $10 outfit from a charity shop or a $1000 one from an up-market boutique. You are fine either way, because you recognise that your outer appearance doesn't define who you are, or determine your worth in God's eyes.

Inner beauty can't be bought, taken off a rack, applied like make-up or put on like a new suit. It's an 'inside job'. So look at yourself today in God's mirror and try to see what He values most: inner beauty.

 

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Finding comfort in troubled times

You say, 'Surely Paul was too spiritually mature to feel downcast?' Apparently not! The chief apostle and leader of the church experienced discouragement, stress, restlessness and even fears. 'When we arrived in Macedonia there was no rest for us. Outside there was conflict from every direction, and inside there was fear. But God, who encourages those who are discouraged, encouraged us by the arrival of Titus...' (2 Corinthians 7:5-6 NLT). So, where do we turn for strength in our times of trouble?

Consider some ways God sends us comfort and encouragement: (1) He comforts us by His presence. 'Now may...God our Father, who loved us and by His grace gave us eternal comfort and a wonderful hope, comfort you and strengthen you in every good thing' (2 Thessalonians 2:16-17 NLT). It's God's nature to be with us, to give us comfort when we're mourning (Matthew 5:4), brokenhearted (Psalm 147:3), overwhelmed (Psalm 145:14), worried (Isaiah 41:10) or unwell (Psalm 41:3). But we must acknowledge His presence and accept His comfort! (2) He comforts us by His Word. 'Remember Your promise to me; it is my only hope. Your promise revives me; it comforts me in all my troubles' (Psalms 119:49-50 NLT).

(3) He comforts us through our prayers. '...As soon as I pray, You answer me; You encourage me by giving me strength' (Psalm 138:3 NLT). (4) He comforts us through Godly friends. Paul writes: 'God...comforted us by the coming of Titus.' Today, look for those who bring comfort, and practise comforting others.

SoulFood: 1 Timothy 4-6, Luke 9:37-45, Psa 42:1-5, Pro 19:12-14

The Word for Today is authored by Bob and Debby Gass and published under licence from UCB International Copyright 2011alt

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