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The Word For Today

Your Daily Devotions (4)

To build and maintain intimacy in a relationship you must schedule time with the other person, otherwise it won't happen. There's a reason the Bible likens your relationship with Christ to that of a bride and groom. For a marriage to be strong, two people must pay attention to each other. And that happens only when they're willing to set aside things like work, financial concerns and even children.

Likewise, your devotional life should involve simply enjoying the presence of the Lord. The Psalmist puts it this way: 'You will fill me with joy in Your presence.' And: 'Delight yourself...in the Lord, and He shall give you the desires of your heart' (Psalm 37:4 NKJV). 'As the deer pants for the water brooks, so pants my soul for You, O God' (Psalm 42:1 NKJV). '...You are my God; early will I seek You; my soul thirsts for You; my flesh longs for You in a dry and thirsty land where there is no water' (Psalm 63:1 NKJV). Many of us lead unhappy lives because we never spend time in God's presence.

Do you know the Lord, or do you merely know about Him? 'Knowing Christ' was Paul's number-one priority: 'I once thought these things were valuable, but now I consider them worthless because of what Christ has done. Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For His sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ and become one with Him...' (Philippians 3:7-9 NLT). Have you reached the place where you can say that too?

Soulfood : 2 Ki 10-12, Luke 16:19-31, Ps 24, Prov 7:24-25

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Your Daily Devotions (3)

Here are two more reasons why spending time alone with God each day is important: (1) To take spiritual inventory of your life. David prayed, 'Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting' (Psalm 139:23-24 NIV). Note the words 'anxious thoughts' and 'offensive way'. These are things you start to take stock of when you are in God's presence. For example, are you growing daily in your spiritual walk? Are you allowing unconfessed sins to pile up in your life? How about your attitudes? In order to see yourself from God's point of view, you have to face these questions in His presence and answer them honestly.

(2) To commit each day to the Lord. The writer of Proverbs said, 'Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight' (Proverbs 3:5-6 ESV). Share your schedule with God, ask Him to guide you in your daily activities and alter them as needed. Ask Him to help you manage your time better so you can get more done (Psalm 90:12). Ask Him to help you distinguish between what's truly important and what isn't (1 Corinthians 10:23).

Every day of your life you'll have to deal with two things: problems and opportunities. And God will give you the right perspective and approach to handle both. You'll be amazed how much more effective and efficient you are when you've spent time with Him.

Soulfood : 2 Ki 7-9, Luke 16:1-18, Ps 135, Prov 7:21-23

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Your Daily Devotions (2)

Another goal of your daily devotions should be: guidance. Without God's input you're at the mercy of your own best thinking - and that should concern you greatly! The Psalmist wrote, 'Show me Your ways...teach me Your paths; guide me in Your truth and teach me, for You are God my Saviour, and my hope is in You all day long' (Psalm 25:4-5 NIV). God said through the prophet Isaiah: 'I will bring the blind by a way they did not know; I will lead them in paths they have not known. I will make darkness light before them, and crooked places straight. These things I will do for them, and not forsake them' (Isaiah 42:16 NKJV).

The path you take determines your destination, so before you decide to go in a given direction, talk to God. And don't be surprised when He takes you down a road 'you have not known'. You must trust that God knows what He's doing. Blaise Pascal said, 'All of man's troubles stem from his inability to sit quietly in a room alone.' In this fast-paced age you must take time to slow down, collect your thoughts, evaluate what's happening around you and get direction from the One who knows the end from the beginning (Isaiah 46:10). Jesus told His disciples to 'come apart' in order to be rejuvenated physically and spiritually (Mark 6:31). The Bible says, '...When they were alone, He explained all things to His disciples' (Mark 4:34 NKJV).

There are certain things God will explain to you only when you take the time to be alone with Him.

Soulfood : 2 Ki 4:18 - 6:33, Luke 15:11-32, Ps 27, Prov 7:10-20

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