Daily Devotional

This space is provided in honor Joe Brooks and Coon Hunters For Christ. The PKC membership is happy to pray for you in a time of need.

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Ronnie W. Stark
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Re: Daily Devotional

Postby Ronnie W. Stark » Fri Jan 24, 2020 12:05 pm

Bible Study Verse
Proverbs 26:1
Like snow in summer or rain in harvest, honor is not fitting for a fool. (NIV)

Thoughts
I remember one time, as a child, finding a wallet on the street that had money in it. I asked my Dad what I should do with it.

He asked me, "What do you think you should do with it?"

I replied, "Well I would like to get it back to the person who lost it."

Dad responded, "And that would be the honorable thing to do."
(Jim C)

Action Point
I have always enjoyed Proverbs because they have so many answers for our lives. It is like the Father passing down information to his children. There is not one verse that you cannot use or have already experienced in your life.

When you think about it, honor is truly deserved for those who earn it. Honorable men and women like those who serve in our military, they serve with honor. We are honored that they do. We are protected by women and men who have honor. Honor is fitting for them.
This is how we know what love is, Jesus Christ laid down his life for us.

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Ronnie W. Stark
Platinum Member
Posts: 2767
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2003 4:41 am
PKC Name: Ronnie W. Stark
City, State: Water Valley, MS
PKC Member Since: 30 May 1990
Annual Membership Expires: 31 May 2020
Lifetime Handler Earnings: $3,480
Location: Water Valley, MS
Contact:

Re: Daily Devotional

Postby Ronnie W. Stark » Wed Feb 05, 2020 12:32 am

Serving God or Money?
By Rick Warren — February 4, 2020

“No one can serve two masters . . . You cannot serve both God and money” (Luke 16:13 NIV).

If God told you to give something away right now and you said, “God, I could give anything else away, but not that,” then you don’t own that thing—it owns you. God will test what’s really first in your life by asking you to give away the very thing you’re holding most tightly.

Luke 16:13 says, “No one can serve two masters . . . You cannot serve both God and money” (NIV).

You’ve got to decide whom or what you’re going to serve, and your giving will reflect your decision. If God is Lord of your life, then he should be Lord of your wallet, too.

There once was a wealthy man who gave to Christian causes far above his tithe. He said he met with a financial planner years ago. After they had talked for a while, the financial planner took a sheet of paper and drew a box, and outside of it he put a dollar sign representing money and a cross representing Christ. He said, “I hear two things vying for your attention. I can’t help you plan your life until you tell me which of these things you want in the center of that box, which represents your life.” The wealthy man thought about it a moment and then said, “I want Christ at the center of my life.” That was a turning point—that was when he started investing in eternity.

If somebody drew a box and asked what’s in the center of your life, what would you say? Would you place a cross or dollar sign inside the box? Would your bank statement support your answer? You can say something holds first place in your life, but the way you spend your time and money reveals the truth.

There are two key choices in your life when it comes to your finances: who will be your master and where you will put your money—eternity or here and now.

“Store up riches for yourselves in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and robbers cannot break in and steal. For your heart will always be where your riches are” (Matthew 6:20-21 GNT).

God doesn’t need your money. He wants what it represents: your heart. You can show God that he has your whole heart by surrendering control of your money to him and committing to give what he tells you to give in service to him and others.

Talk About It

What do you want at the center of your “box”? How would that require you to make some changes in your life?
What can you start doing today so that your giving reflects who or what you want your master to be?
How does knowing God doesn’t need your money affect your attitude about tithing?
Why do we often hold on to money so tightly?
This is how we know what love is, Jesus Christ laid down his life for us.

(662) 417-1588 Cell
(662) 473-8413 Cell

Ronnie W. Stark
Platinum Member
Posts: 2767
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2003 4:41 am
PKC Name: Ronnie W. Stark
City, State: Water Valley, MS
PKC Member Since: 30 May 1990
Annual Membership Expires: 31 May 2020
Lifetime Handler Earnings: $3,480
Location: Water Valley, MS
Contact:

Re: Daily Devotional

Postby Ronnie W. Stark » Thu Feb 06, 2020 11:15 am

Are You Too Tired to Love Others Well?
By Rick Warren — February 6, 2020

“You made my body, Lord; now give me sense to heed your laws” (Psalm 119:73 TLB).

It’s hard to love when you’re tired.

That’s right: Your physical condition has a strong impact on your relationships. Being energetic makes a big difference!

What happens to your relationships when you’re run-down? Things that are usually small issues become big problems. You may be crankier, defensive, or more critical when you’re low on energy.

If you’re committed to becoming better at loving others, develop habits that refresh you physically. The Bible teaches us many principles for health, but the three most basic are proper rest, a balanced diet, and regular exercise.

Rest. Psalm 127:2 says, “It is senseless for you to work so hard from early morning until late at night . . . for God wants his loved ones to get their proper rest” (TLB). If you are too tired to love your kids, your spouse, or a roommate, then your problem is first physical, not spiritual. It’s amazing how much better things look after a good night’s sleep.

Balanced diet. The Bible says, “You made my body, Lord; now give me sense to heed your laws” (Psalm 119:73 TLB). God provides wonderful delights for us to enjoy and savor. We are meant to enjoy food! But he has also given us wisdom to know what and how much is good to put in our body—and what is not. We just need to do it.

Regular exercise. “God has bought you with a great price. So use every part of your body to give glory back to God” (1 Corinthians 6:20 TLB). To overcome fatigue, you must commit to regular exercise. Study after study shows that exercise doesn’t deplete your energy. It actually increases your energy.

God never meant for you to go through life exhausted. When you’re too tired to love others well, take a good look at how much you’re resting, what you’re eating, and how often you exercise. Then make better—and often more difficult—choices to take care of yourself.

You and those you love will only benefit in the long run.

Talk About It

What things in your life often take precedence over getting enough rest? Are those things more important than your health?
In what ways has God already given you wisdom about your diet that you have not followed?
If you think you’re too tired to exercise, what will it take to get your energy back? Are you willing to try a simple exercise like walking 30 minutes daily for the next few days to see how it makes you feel?
This is how we know what love is, Jesus Christ laid down his life for us.

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Ronnie W. Stark
Platinum Member
Posts: 2767
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2003 4:41 am
PKC Name: Ronnie W. Stark
City, State: Water Valley, MS
PKC Member Since: 30 May 1990
Annual Membership Expires: 31 May 2020
Lifetime Handler Earnings: $3,480
Location: Water Valley, MS
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Re: Daily Devotional

Postby Ronnie W. Stark » Mon Feb 17, 2020 12:02 pm

Love Is a Choice
By Rick Warren — February 17, 2020

"If I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing" (1 Corinthians 13:2 NIV).

Love is not a feeling. Love is a choice. Even when you don’t feel like it, you can choose to do it anyway.

I once talked with a young mother who felt overwhelmed and was battling depression. It seemed like her schedule and the demands on her life were too much to handle. She felt like all she did was nag her kids and scold them incessantly. When she looked at herself, she saw a failure. In her despair, she cried out to the Lord.

As she spent more time reading the Bible, she found the answer in 1 Corinthians 13. Five words in particular leaped out at her: “Without love, I am nothing.” So she wrote out these words and placed the notes all over her house—on her refrigerator door, on the dashboard of her SUV, at the top of her calendar.

“I realized the single most important thing I could do was love my family,” she said. “So I began to live my life by love. I began to run my home on love. It was as transforming as when I accepted Christ into my life. It brought the happiness back into my life and my home.”

What made the difference for this young mom? She made a choice. It wasn’t always the easy choice, but it changed the whole dynamic of her home and the way she saw herself as a mother and as God’s child.

Acting in love when you don’t feel like it is actually a greater expression of love than when you do feel like it. Love is getting up in the middle of the night to help a sick kid after you’ve already had a long day and went to bed late. Love is being patient with your spouse when they’re irritable. Love is giving a person what they need, not what they deserve.

It’s easier to act your way into a feeling than feel your way into an action. If you act in a loving way, eventually the feelings will follow. That’s important to remember when you are trying to love people who seem unlovable.

When you love in spite of your feelings, that’s called loving by faith. And it doesn’t just change the other person. It changes you, too, and makes you more like Jesus.

Talk About It

How can you learn to love more like Jesus so that it is easier to choose to love someone who is unlovable?
How does the Bible challenge the way our culture portrays romantic love?
When people don’t respond to your love the way you expect, what is a Christlike way to react?
This is how we know what love is, Jesus Christ laid down his life for us.

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Ronnie W. Stark
Platinum Member
Posts: 2767
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2003 4:41 am
PKC Name: Ronnie W. Stark
City, State: Water Valley, MS
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Re: Daily Devotional

Postby Ronnie W. Stark » Wed Feb 19, 2020 2:38 pm

What Does It Mean For Us to Love?
By Rick Warren — February 19, 2020

“Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

Love never fails” (1 Corinthians 13:6-8 NIV).

One of my heroes was Dr. E.V. Hill, pastor of the Mount Zion Missionary Baptist Church in Los Angeles. He was a tremendous man of God and an intellectual giant. He was also a man of integrity who was not afraid to call it as he saw it. Because of the many times in his ministry he called out injustice in inner-city L.A., he faced constant death threats.

After something he said one Sunday morning, there was a threat that he was going to be bombed during the next week, and he took it very seriously. One day that week he came home and noticed his car wasn’t there. He immediately thought that either somebody had stolen it or someone was tampering with it and planting a bomb in it. He sat down on his front steps, deeply worried. About 30 minutes later, his wife, who was well aware of the threat, drove up in that very same car.

“What are you doing?” he yelled, frightened that she had taken such a risk. She said, “I got to thinking. This community needs you more than it needs me. If they were going to rig that car to be bombed, I wanted me to be in it, not you.” Dr. Hill later said, “I always knew that my wife loved me. But then I finally understood what love was all about.”

Dr. and Mrs. Hill knew that love is not something you feel. Love is not something you say. Love is something you do.

Notice all the action steps in today’s Scripture. Love rejoices, protects, trusts, hopes, and perseveres. These are things that you do. Love doesn’t just talk or offer lip service. Love makes a choice every day to do for others what God has done for us.

You don’t have to wonder what it means to love. God showed us clearly what love does, and then he gave us the greatest example of love when he gave us Jesus.

Talk About It

What people in your life are easiest to love? What people are hardest for you to love?
What is one way you can love more like Jesus?
It’s difficult to “always” do something, because we also still sin. Why do you think the Bible describes love as “always” doing the actions listed in 1 Corinthians 13:6-8?
This is how we know what love is, Jesus Christ laid down his life for us.

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Ronnie W. Stark
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Posts: 2767
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2003 4:41 am
PKC Name: Ronnie W. Stark
City, State: Water Valley, MS
PKC Member Since: 30 May 1990
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Re: Daily Devotional

Postby Ronnie W. Stark » Wed Feb 19, 2020 2:43 pm

They’ll Know Us by Our Love
CURRENT TEACHING SERIES
40 Days of Love

They’ll Know Us by Our Love
By Rick Warren — February 18, 2020

“Everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another” (John 13:35 NIV).

The distinguishing mark of a Christian is not a cross, a crucifix, a dove, or a fish on a bumper sticker. The sign of a Christian is love. How many people know you’re a Christian because of your loving lifestyle?

We sing about love, talk about love, pray about love, and study love. But do we do it? To develop love as your life principle and make it your greatest aim, you have to take some action as soon as you finish reading this devotional. You’re going to have to take the initiative. Love acts!

First, start acting loving in your current relationships. Have you acted unlovingly toward someone, and it’s time to seek reconciliation? Make things right with your kids, your spouse, your boyfriend or girlfriend, your parents, or someone at school or work.

Then, start increasing the number of relationships you have. If the most important aim in life is to love, we need to build as many relationships as possible. Why? Because the world will know about God’s love by the way we love each other—and especially by the way they are loved by Christians.

You cannot live a loving lifestyle as a hermit. You spell love T-I-M-E. It takes time to love other people. If you love your friends, you’ve got to spend time with them. If you love your kids, you’ve got to spend time with them. If you love Jesus, you’ve got to spend time with him. Love always costs time and energy. But it’s always worth it.

Can you imagine what would happen if everyone in the church loved like this—if we all committed ourselves to acting in love and giving our time unselfishly so that people could experience a taste of how much God loves them? It would change the world. It would grow God’s Kingdom. It would make God so happy.

People are attracted to Christ more than they are persuaded to him. They’re attracted by the love of God shown through the people who claim to follow him. And they won’t care what we know until they first know that we care.

Talk About It

How does the way you show love to everyone impact and influence the people in your life who aren’t followers of Jesus?
With whom do you need to seek reconciliation in love? How can you take the first step?
What might be keeping you from developing and deepening more relationships?
God loves us even though we sin. In fact, he loves us so much that he sent his Son, Jesus, to cleanse us from our sins and bring us into the family of God.

If you’ve never accepted God’s love and invited Jesus into your heart, I want you to have that opportunity now. Pray this prayer: “Dear God, I don’t understand it all, but I thank you that you love me. I thank you that you are for me and that you didn’t send Jesus to condemn me but to save me. I admit I need Jesus as my Savior, and today I want to ask Jesus into my heart. I want a relationship with Jesus. I want to follow him and do the things he tells me to do.

“I ask you to save me from my past, my regrets, my mistakes, my sins, my habits, my hurts, and my hang-ups. I ask you to save me for your purpose. I want to know why you put me on this planet. And I want to fulfill what you made me to do. I want to learn to love you and trust you and be in your family forever. In your name I pray. Amen.”
This is how we know what love is, Jesus Christ laid down his life for us.

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Ronnie W. Stark
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Posts: 2767
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2003 4:41 am
PKC Name: Ronnie W. Stark
City, State: Water Valley, MS
PKC Member Since: 30 May 1990
Annual Membership Expires: 31 May 2020
Lifetime Handler Earnings: $3,480
Location: Water Valley, MS
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Re: Daily Devotional

Postby Ronnie W. Stark » Thu Feb 27, 2020 5:06 am

Bible Study Verse
Mathew 5:48
Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect. (HCSB)

Thoughts
Are you a perfectionist? I got to thinking that some fly fishermen tend to lean in this direction. I have heard that some surgeons like to fly fish, and they are good at it too because they know how to tie good knots; like the ones they use in surgery. Most doctors tend to be perfectionists, (we hope).

I call myself an imperfect perfectionist. I want everything perfect, but I tend to mess things up more than I make them perfect. Could it be we all have the same goal to see things perfect, but are frustrated that hardly anything we do or achieve measures up to our high standards of what we believe they ought to be?
(Tom H)

Action Point
Give up trying to be perfect! Do the best you can, but allow God to live His perfect life through you. The command in Mathew 5:48, is impossible apart from the enabling power of Christ who indwells in each true believer.
This is how we know what love is, Jesus Christ laid down his life for us.

(662) 417-1588 Cell
(662) 473-8413 Cell

Ronnie W. Stark
Platinum Member
Posts: 2767
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2003 4:41 am
PKC Name: Ronnie W. Stark
City, State: Water Valley, MS
PKC Member Since: 30 May 1990
Annual Membership Expires: 31 May 2020
Lifetime Handler Earnings: $3,480
Location: Water Valley, MS
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Re: Daily Devotional

Postby Ronnie W. Stark » Thu Feb 27, 2020 5:16 am

Bible Study Verses
Psalm 17:4-5
Though people tried to bribe me, I have kept myself from the ways of the violent through what your lips have commanded. My steps have held to your paths; my feet have not stumbled.(NIV)

Thoughts
Have you ever seen a mountain goat jump from rock to rock or climb straight up the side of a mountain? They do it with very little effort. If we tried that same climb, we would need ropes, bolts, anchors, and safety equipment.

God has given mountain goats their own specialized equipment. Their hooves have a hard outer shell with a rubbery concave foot pad that acts like a suction cup when they put weight on it. Not even the most expensive pair of vibram-soled hunting boots can compare to the foot of a mountain goat.
(Ron T)

Action Point
When out hunting or hiking in the woods, it's possible to come across many trails and paths. Some paths will get you home and some won't. It's important to know what's what out there.

King David warned us about the path of the wicked, Proverbs 4:14. God has a better path and He will teach us His ways, Micah 4:2. If we follow God's path, we can be like the mountain goat and have no fear of slipping or falling.
This is how we know what love is, Jesus Christ laid down his life for us.

(662) 417-1588 Cell
(662) 473-8413 Cell

Ronnie W. Stark
Platinum Member
Posts: 2767
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2003 4:41 am
PKC Name: Ronnie W. Stark
City, State: Water Valley, MS
PKC Member Since: 30 May 1990
Annual Membership Expires: 31 May 2020
Lifetime Handler Earnings: $3,480
Location: Water Valley, MS
Contact:

Re: Daily Devotional

Postby Ronnie W. Stark » Sun Mar 01, 2020 3:43 pm

Bible Study Verse
I Corinthians 1:31
Therefore, as it is written: "Let the one who boasts boast in the Lord." (NIV)

Thoughts
I have a co-worker who loves to hunt. He has killed a number of deer and elk, including some respectable bulls. When he drew a muzzleloader elk tag last year, he said, "I'll drop the first bull I see, even if it's a spike."

I was a little surprised and asked him why he wouldn't wait for a trophy?

He just said, "I've hunted for years. I know I can kill one. I just want a young bull that'll taste good." No bravado, nothing about his innate abilities as an elk hunter.
(Ruben C)

Action Point
My friend is clearly passionate about hunting and successful in his quest for animals; but he does not bother to brag about his prowess, only about the thrill of hunting. The Apostle Paul said, "Brothers and sisters, think of what you were when you were called. Not many of you were wise by human standards; not many were influential; not many were of noble birth. But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. God chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things-and the things that are not -to nullify the things that are, so that no one may boast before Him,"
I Corinthians 1:26-29 (NIV).

Why do we hunt? When you first started hunting, was it about killing a trophy-class animal, or was it about the thrill of the hunt--whether it was a rabbit, squirrel, or your first deer?

For me it was about the hunt. Don't get me wrong. I understand many of us have different goals when we hunt; but there is much to learn from my friend's humility in simply being satisfied with a well-placed shot after a well-executed stalk, regardless of how many points are on the rack (if any). It teaches me not to focus on what other hunters think of me and my success as a hunter, but what God thinks of me as a disciple. Remember, "You were bought at a price; do not become slaves of human beings," I Corinthians 7:23 (NIV).

In order to please God, we must live as men/women set apart from the world, even when we hunt.
This is how we know what love is, Jesus Christ laid down his life for us.

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Ronnie W. Stark
Platinum Member
Posts: 2767
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2003 4:41 am
PKC Name: Ronnie W. Stark
City, State: Water Valley, MS
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Annual Membership Expires: 31 May 2020
Lifetime Handler Earnings: $3,480
Location: Water Valley, MS
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Re: Daily Devotional

Postby Ronnie W. Stark » Mon Mar 02, 2020 2:02 pm

40 Days of Love

Five First Steps to Building a Life of Love
By Rick Warren — March 2, 2020

“Keep company with him and learn a life of love. Observe how Christ loved us. His love was not cautious but extravagant. He didn’t love in order to get something from us but to give everything of himself to us. Love like that.”

(Ephesians 5:2 The Message)

I’ve been on this earth for a while now, and I’m still convicted by God about how little I really know about love and how often I am an unloving person. But the fact is, we all need work in this area. We all have a lot of growing to do as we mature in God’s love.

So how do you build a life of real deep love? That’s a profound question, and you will spend the rest of your life trying to do it. But I can give you some steps to get you out of the starting block—five things you can do this week that will help you get on the road to becoming a truly great person of love.

1. Learn how mature love acts and responds.

Personal change always begins with a change in perspective. You need to get God’s perspective on what love is really like, because the world knows nothing about real, deep love. You do that by getting into God’s Word.

2. Start your day with a daily reminder to love.

The first 10 minutes of the day set your entire mood for the rest of the day. Resolve to get up in the morning and say, “God, help me to remember that the most important thing is loving you and loving other people. If I don’t get anything else done today besides love you and the people that you put around me more, this has not been a wasted day.”

3. Memorize what God says about love.

God’s Word is filled with truths and principles on how to become a loving person. The problem is, when you’re in a situation where you’re tempted to be unloving, your Bible is usually at home on a shelf. That’s why you need to memorize Scripture—so that God can bring verses to mind when you need them the most.

4. Practice acting in unselfish, loving ways.

Love is like a muscle. The more you use it, the more it develops. If you want to become a truly loving person, you have to intentionally do some things that seem awkward at first. But the more you practice, the more it becomes second nature, and you become a genuinely loving person.

5. Get support from other loving people.

If you’re just sitting in your room and reading a book, you’re not going to get very far in learning how to love. You only learn it in connection to others, in the context of community. That’s one of the reasons why a small group is so important! It puts you in situations where you can grow as you see godly love modeled for you and as you practice serving others in unselfish, loving ways.

You never learn to love by just sitting back and listening. You learn it in relationship to other people.

Talk About It

What could you change about your schedule so you can give God the best part of your day and start your day in his Word?
Think of the ways you learned best in school. How can you apply some of those same principles to the way you memorize Scripture?
What people in your life have modeled a life of love? In what specific ways do they love God and others well?
This is how we know what love is, Jesus Christ laid down his life for us.

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Ronnie W. Stark
Platinum Member
Posts: 2767
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2003 4:41 am
PKC Name: Ronnie W. Stark
City, State: Water Valley, MS
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Location: Water Valley, MS
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Re: Daily Devotional

Postby Ronnie W. Stark » Wed Mar 11, 2020 10:40 am

Change Worry to Worship by Asking God for Help
By Rick Warren — March 11, 2020

“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything.”

(Philippians 4:6 NLT)

Have you ever had one of those days when nothing goes right? When the odds are stacked against you, you’re overwhelmed, and you wonder if you should just give up and go back to bed?

When you have a day like that—or maybe even a year like that—you have two choices: You can worry, or you can worship.

You can’t do both. If you’re worrying, you’re not going to worship. If you’re worshiping, you’re not going to worry.

Philippians 4:6 says, “Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done” (NLT).

The antidote to worry is worship—to pray, praise God, and ask him for what you need.

When many people hear the word “worship,” they think of music. Music is one way to worship. But worship really is an entire lifestyle. Every aspect of your life can be an act of worship to God.

For the next several days we’re going to look at what it means to worship. I’ll walk you through one of my favorite stories in the Bible. It’s found in the Old Testament book of 2 Chronicles.

Three enemy nations—the Moabites, Ammonites, and Meunites—ganged up on King Jehoshaphat. The king received a report that they were on their way to fight the nation of Israel.

The odds were three nations against one. But, instead of worrying, Jehoshaphat chose to worship by asking God for help: “Jehoshaphat was afraid, so he decided to ask the LORD what to do” (2 Chronicles 20:3 NCV).

His first reaction was fear—and, considering the odds, fear was reasonable.

The king could have let his fear intimidate him, discourage him, or cause him to give up. But, instead, Jehoshaphat let his fear motivate him to worship through prayer.

And he didn’t do it alone. He gathered others to pray with him: “The country of Judah united in seeking GOD’s help—they came from all the cities of Judah to pray to GOD” (2 Chronicles 20:4 The Message).

You likely never have had a day when three nations were united in war against you. But you have had days when the odds were not in your favor. And you will again.

When impossible days come, choose to worship God by asking him to help you. He will always hear and respond.

Talk About It

When have you chosen to worry instead of worship? What was the result?
When have you chosen to worship instead of worry? What difference did it make?
Instead of worrying about it, what’s one thing you can ask God’s help for today?
This is how we know what love is, Jesus Christ laid down his life for us.

(662) 417-1588 Cell
(662) 473-8413 Cell

Ronnie W. Stark
Platinum Member
Posts: 2767
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2003 4:41 am
PKC Name: Ronnie W. Stark
City, State: Water Valley, MS
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Lifetime Handler Earnings: $3,480
Location: Water Valley, MS
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Re: Daily Devotional

Postby Ronnie W. Stark » Wed Mar 11, 2020 10:52 am

Rely on God’s Power, Not Your Own
By Rick Warren — March 10, 2020

“He never grows tired or weary . . . He strengthens those who are weak and tired . . . those who trust in the LORD for help will find their strength renewed.”

(Isaiah 40:28-31 GNT)

The worst times of life exhaust and drain you. When the roof of your life is falling in, you might look up in despair and say, “What now? What next? I can’t handle one more thing.”

In 2 Corinthians 1:8, Paul tells of having similar thoughts. He says, “We were really crushed and overwhelmed, and feared we would never live through it” (TLB).

It sounds like Paul was about ready to give up. But see what happens next: “We felt we were doomed to die and saw how powerless we were to help ourselves; but that was good, for then we put everything into the hands of God, who alone could save us, for he can even raise the dead. And he did help us and saved us from a terrible death; yes, and we expect him to do it again and again” (2 Corinthians 1:9-10 TLB).

Paul knew that, since God can raise the dead, he certainly could help him. And that’s true for you, too. That same power that raised Jesus is available to you.

Jesus’ resurrection means no situation is hopeless and no problem is too difficult. If God can raise a dead man, he can resurrect your health or a dead marriage. He can infuse new life into your career.

How can you receive that kind of power? You receive it when God fills your life with the Holy Spirit.

The Bible says, “For the Spirit that God has given us does not make us timid; instead, his Spirit fills us with power, love, and self-control” (2 Timothy 1:7 GNT).

When God’s Spirit fills your life, you have true self-control for the first time in your life. You no longer are bashed back and forth by circumstances. With Christ as your Master, you can master your situation. You’re no longer relying on your own power to hold all the strings of your life together. You’re depending on God’s power.

“He never grows tired or weary . . . He strengthens those who are weak and tired . . . those who trust in the LORD for help will find their strength renewed” (Isaiah 40:28-31 GNT).

God is faithful. No matter what you’re facing, he will carry you through it.

Talk About It

What difficult thing in your life is threatening to overwhelm you today? What would it look like to rely on God’s power in that situation?
Which parts of your life do you need to ask God to resurrect?
How do you feel about the Holy Spirit? Do you rely on him for the power you need to face your trials?
This is how we know what love is, Jesus Christ laid down his life for us.

(662) 417-1588 Cell
(662) 473-8413 Cell

Ronnie W. Stark
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Posts: 2767
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2003 4:41 am
PKC Name: Ronnie W. Stark
City, State: Water Valley, MS
PKC Member Since: 30 May 1990
Annual Membership Expires: 31 May 2020
Lifetime Handler Earnings: $3,480
Location: Water Valley, MS
Contact:

Re: Daily Devotional

Postby Ronnie W. Stark » Fri Apr 10, 2020 3:45 pm

What Will Heaven Be Like?
By Rick Warren — April 10, 2020

“My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.”

John 14:2-3 (NIV)

Have you ever wondered what heaven will look like?

In a word, it will be indescribable.

Even Paul, who wrote most of the New Testament, didn’t have words to describe it: “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him” (1 Corinthians 2:9 NLT).

Right now, we live on a broken planet. Nothing works perfectly, and yet there's still a lot of beauty in it.

Imagine what it will be like to be in absolutely perfect place—with perfect sights, sounds, and smells. Our TV version of heaven with fog up to the knees, angel wings, and white everywhere is a pale comparison. Heaven won’t be boring!

The more pain, sorrow, abuse, violence, and prejudice we see on earth, the better heaven starts to seem in our minds. We have so much to look forward to.

But the only reason we can do that is because of what Jesus did on Easter morning. The resurrection gives us hope. Without the resurrection, we wouldn’t have a chance at heaven.

Paul tells us this in 1 Corinthians 15:17-20: “If Christ has not been raised, then your faith is useless and you are still guilty of your sins. In that case, all who have died believing in Christ are lost! And if our hope in Christ is only for this life, we are more to be pitied than anyone in the world” (NLT).

I know for an absolute certainty that I’ll spend eternity in heaven. I can have this hope because Jesus has forgiven every sin I’ve ever committed and every sin I will commit in the future.

Because Jesus has paid for my sin, I no longer have to worry about what happens to me when I die. And the same can be true for you.

Jesus has it covered: “My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am” (John 14:2-3 NIV).

Talk About It

When you think about heaven, what comes to mind?
What part about heaven excites you the most? Why?
What do you believe about the resurrection? Why is it necessary?
How do you get the gift of eternal life and the assurance of heaven? You believe that Jesus Christ died for your sins, and you receive his gift of forgiveness.

This is a promise to all people, no matter your religion, race, location, or past.

“Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved” (Acts 2:21 NIV). That is the best gift you are ever going to be offered. Don’t wait another day to claim it!

Make this your prayer: “Dear God, thank you for your goodness to me. Thank you for loving me and caring about every detail of my life. Thank you for sharing my pain. Most of all, thank you for sending Jesus to save me. I believe he died on the cross for me, and I want to receive him as my Savior. Please forgive my sins and accept me into your family. I want to learn to love, trust, and follow you for the rest of my life on earth. Then I want to join you in heaven forever. Amen.”

If you just prayed to accept Jesus, please email me at [email protected] and let me know about it. I’d like to send you some free materials to help you start your journey with Jesus.
This is how we know what love is, Jesus Christ laid down his life for us.

(662) 417-1588 Cell
(662) 473-8413 Cell

Ronnie W. Stark
Platinum Member
Posts: 2767
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2003 4:41 am
PKC Name: Ronnie W. Stark
City, State: Water Valley, MS
PKC Member Since: 30 May 1990
Annual Membership Expires: 31 May 2020
Lifetime Handler Earnings: $3,480
Location: Water Valley, MS
Contact:

Re: Daily Devotional

Postby Ronnie W. Stark » Fri Apr 10, 2020 3:47 pm

Bible Study Verse
Joshua 4:21-24
He said to the Israelites, "In the future when your descendants ask their fathers, 'What do these stones mean?' tell them, 'Israel crossed the Jordan on dry ground.' For the LORD your God dried up the Jordan before you until you had crossed over. The LORD your God did to the Jordan just what he had done to the Red Sea when he dried it up before us until we had crossed over. He did this so that all the peoples of the earth might know that the hand of the LORD is powerful and so that you might always fear the LORD your God." (NIV)

Thoughts
My wife's passions are her horses and trail riding. In the past 38 years we have ridden many back country trails and followed cairns, small piles of rock set to mark the trail. Today the Forest Service uses small blue diamonds tacked to trees along the trail. The older method of marking with stones is still used, especially on unmapped trails or the older less traveled trails. Recently I found cairns over two feet high, stacked by an energetic soul. They still all serve the same purpose, the way.
(Byron S.)

Action Point
Rock pillars or cairns date back to Moses' crossing the Red Sea during the Exodus. Rock pillars, thought to be set up by King Solomon, mark the crossing site. They what God did for His people. Another analogy that I thought of is stones of remembrance are to point and show us the way. I have discovered is that every page of the Bible, both Old and New Testaments, point to Jesus Christ, The Way.

Genesis 5 holds the prophetic stones that reflect genealogy from Adam to Noah which spell out the Gospel:

Adam=Man
Seth=Appointed
Enosh=Mortal
Cainan=Sorrow
Mahalalel=The Blessed God
Jared=Shall Come Down
Enoch=Teaching
Methuselah=His Death Shall Bring
Lamech=The Despairing
Noah=Comfort

In sentence form it reads: Man (has) Appointed Mortal Sorrow; (but) The Blessed God Shall come down Teaching, (and) His death shall bring The Despairing comfort.

Take time to read and study your Bible, you will be amazed at the stones of membrance that you will find. I guarantee it will keep you on the trail.
This is how we know what love is, Jesus Christ laid down his life for us.

(662) 417-1588 Cell
(662) 473-8413 Cell

Ronnie W. Stark
Platinum Member
Posts: 2767
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2003 4:41 am
PKC Name: Ronnie W. Stark
City, State: Water Valley, MS
PKC Member Since: 30 May 1990
Annual Membership Expires: 31 May 2020
Lifetime Handler Earnings: $3,480
Location: Water Valley, MS
Contact:

Re: Daily Devotional

Postby Ronnie W. Stark » Fri Apr 10, 2020 3:49 pm

Bible Study Verse
Psalms 51:10-13
Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. Do not cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me. Then I will teach transgressors your ways, and sinners will turn back to you. (NIV)

Thoughts
I'm not a great fly tier, but I do enjoy making flies and then catching fish with something I created. The bigger the fly pattern the better for me, I can use a bigger hook and have more material to work with. I like making dragonfly nymphs. They are fairly large and very productive when it comes to fishing. What fish won't eat a dragonfly nymph? I have been successful using them on trout, bass, pan fish, and even bullheads.

The life cycle of a dragonfly is very interesting. They go from aquatic to terrestrial, not unlike a lot of other insects. Once they hatch from their egg in the water, they are in the nymph stage for a period of time eating those pesky mosquito larvae. When they emerge from the water, they become the colorful adult dragonflies you see patrolling the water's edge.
(Ron T)

Action Point
When we become Christians we go through quite a change as well. We are born again and the old us is gone forever. Our job after we emerge is pretty simple. Mark 16:15 says, "Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation," (NIV). We all have our own little territory in "all the world" so that's a good place to start. If you're not sure what to say, just keep it simple. You might try, "Jesus changed my life, and He can change yours too." After that, be prepared to share your testimony if the opportunity presents itself.
This is how we know what love is, Jesus Christ laid down his life for us.

(662) 417-1588 Cell
(662) 473-8413 Cell


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