Jon E Clist 9:00-12:00am

The Word For Today

Today share your faith

'A woman of Samaria came to draw water.' John 4:7 NKJV

One day Jesus met a woman who'd come to draw water from a well. After five failed marriages, her trust in men was zero - and her self-esteem was minus zero! But after her encounter with Christ, she left the well radically changed.

When it comes to sharing our faith, we learn three important lessons from her story: (1) Jesus sees the best in everybody. 'The Pharisees...complained, saying, "This man receives sinners"' (Luke 15:2 NKJV). And when it came to the woman at the well, they were right. She'd been through five divorces and was the talk of the town because she was living with another man. Yet she was the first person to whom Jesus introduced himself as the Messiah. Why didn't he do that when he called his disciples? Or performed his first miracle? Or interviewed Nicodemus? Because Jesus doesn't measure you by your past or your pedigree - but by your potential. (2) Jesus changes you, then he uses you to change others. This woman was the first person to share the Gospel in Samaria, and 'many...Samaritans...believed in him because of the word of the woman' (John 4:39 NKJV). Out of your brokenness, God can use you to make others whole. (3) Jesus doesn't need you to explain him, just to introduce him. He speaks for himself. The Bible says: 'Many more believed because of his own word...They said to the woman, "Now we believe, not because of what you said, for we ourselves have heard him and we know that this is indeed the Christ"' (John 4:41-42 NKJV).

Today share your faith with someone.

Soulfood: 2 Ki 13-15 Mark 13:1-11 Ps 143 Pro 13:9-10,


The ultimate purpose of prayer

'To be conformed to the likeness of his Son.' Romans 8:29 NIV

'Those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son' (Romans 8:29 NIV). When you read the preceding verses in the chapter you discover God does this through prayer. This should encourage you to pray.

Many times we don't pray because we don't think anything's happening. But with God, something's always happening! We wonder, 'When is he going to work?' What we fail to understand is - he's always working. When it comes to prayer he's either answering the way you hoped, or changing your heart through the Spirit's intercession to bring your prayer into harmony with his will. You say, 'But I don't see anything happening.' When you plant a seed, you don't come back the next day expecting green shoots and leaves. Does that mean nothing's happening? No, a host of necessary processes are taking place below the ground where you can't see them. Don't make the mistake of thinking that because you don't see the evidence there's nothing's happening. It's just not harvest time yet.

One way in which God is making us more like Jesus is by helping us to pray the way Jesus prayed, 'Not my will, but yours be done' (Luke 22:42 NIV). That means when your prayer lines up with his will, he's already working on it even though you can't see it. And if your prayer isn't in accordance with his will, he's working to change your request by changing you. Unanswered prayer can be as big a blessing as answered prayer, when it keeps us from violating God's will. And what is God's will? To make you more like Jesus!

Soulfood: 2 Ki 10-12 Mark 12:28-44 Ps 132:11-18 Pro 13:7-8,


A prayer for your children

'Children are a heritage from the Lord.' Psalm 127:3 NKJV

When someone loves you enough to leave you an inheritance, you should treasure it and treat it in a way that honours them.

The Bible says that your children are a 'heritage' from the Lord. So here's a prayer for them: 'Lord, I cannot begin to tell you how blessed and grateful I am for my children. I recognise each of them as a beautiful gift from you. You have given them to me to love and care for, to enjoy and celebrate, to delight in and raise so that they may come to know you as the greatest heritage of all. Thank you that no one, not even me, can ever be as good to them as you are. Because you have given me the privilege and responsibility of bringing them to you, teach me the importance of lifting them up before you each day in prayer. Keep them in the centre of your love and designed purpose. Bless them with the knowledge of who you are. Help them to put their trust in you and stay on the path of life you have for them. Enable them to recognise the gifts and the calling that you have put in them, and to follow your leading as you develop them and use them for your glory. Make your face shine upon them, your grace be with them, and your love abound in them. In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.'

Are your children serving the Lord? If not, stand on this Bible promise: '"There is hope in your future," says the Lord, "that your children shall come back to their own border [the principles they were taught]"' (Jeremiah 31:17 NKJV).

Soulfood: 2 Ki 7-9 Mark 12:13-27 Ps 132:1-10 Pro 13:4-6,

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