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What Does Jesus Say

                Forgiveness. Asking for forgiveness, extending forgiveness to others. It isn’t easy. In this devotional, we are focusing on what Jesus himself says about forgiveness through various gospel passages. MATTHEW 6:9-15 (NIV)  “This, then, is how you should pray: “‘Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, 10 your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.11 Give us today our daily bread. 12 And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. 13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the …

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Parable of the Unmerciful Servant

          MATTHEW 18:21 – 35 (NIV) “Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother or sister who sins against me? Up to seven times?” 22 Jesus answered, “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times. 23 “Therefore, the kingdom of heaven is like a king who wanted to settle accounts with his servants. 24 As he began the settlement, a man who owed him ten thousand bags of gold was brought to him. 25 Since he was not able to pay, the master ordered that he and his wife and his …

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Delight, Detail and Direction

            “the Lord directs the steps of the godly. He delights in every detail of their lives.”  Psalms 37:23 To know that God directs my steps is an awesome comfort. I have seen that part of the verse many times. Today, the second part really spoke to me. God really-really-really delights in me? Oh, yes! And, as if that is not enough, He delights “in…every…detail.”  wow!  That means the things that hurt, the things no one else can understand, the things that make me cry, the things that overwhelm me with joy, the things that …

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Master in the Marvelous and the Miserable

        “I said to the Lord, “You are my master! Every good thing I have comes from you.”” Psalms 16:2   He is my master… in good times (like the wonderful beach vacation my husband and I just shared), when weather is beautiful, when life brings joy and blessing, when prayers are answered as I prayed, when blessings are present and tribulations are far away. Oh, how I can proclaim He is my master and He is good and all good things are from Him!!!  What Jesus follower would state differently? Yet, what do I proclaim when …

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Forever Forgiveness

              “…their sins and their lawless deeds I will remember no more.” Hebrews 10:17 Have you ever pondered on this verse? There is no comparison to any other thing in our lives! I have heard Christians say, “there is nothing God cannot do!” I understand the premise for their statement, but I would say (and thankfully so) that there really are some things God cannot do. He cannot lie, He cannot sin, He cannot change, and there are others, but what a blessing that He cannot remember forgiven sin!!! What a gift!  What freedom!!! …

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No Condemnation

“Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” Romans 8:1 Condemnation. We’ve all experienced it. Sometimes it surprises us … catches us off guard. But where does it come from? Friend and family? Neighbors and co-workers? Sometimes we find it online and other times on social media. But the worst is perhaps when it bubbles up in our own head and heart. Have you ever found yourself condemning yourself? Paul reminds us in Romans 8 what our enemy wants us to forget: we are no longer condemned! Our identity in Christ has set us free from the …

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Believe and Live

  But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name. John 20:31 The reason John wrote his gospel is the same reason many of us talk to our children and grandchildren about Jesus: we want them to have eternal life! On Easter Sunday morning this year, we watched as a little girl in our church was baptized. The children’s pastor commented that when he asked her about coming to know Jesus she responded, “My family talks to me about Jesus all …

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If satan was a lion

Have you ever been chased by a mountain lion? Well, most people would answer, ‘no.’ It would be a scary thing to be chased by an animal like a lion. But, think about this fact: It says in the Bible that satan goes here and there, patrolling mankind, looking for someone to devour. Satan is always waiting and ready to pounce on available prey. The prey, being you and me. Yes, he even chases Christians. Even more so, because the devil’s not interested in non-Christians. They’re already under satan’s rule. Satan is manipulative and sneaky. He will come out of …

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Setting Your Mind on Things Above

“Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.” Ephesians 6:11 Satan is relentless in his attempts to take over our minds through our thoughts, our hearts with only his desires and, finally, ownership of our souls. He comes to steal, kill, and destroy, therefore he is very manipulative, as well as, extremely convincing. This is why we need to arm ourselves with scripture every day. We may not always have control over when negative thoughts enter our minds, but we do have control over what we decide to do with …

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Spirit of Truth

    “Therefore if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come. The old is gone and the new is here.” 2 Corinthians 5:17 When a person asks Jesus into his heart, the Holy Spirit comes to live within him. Changes take place and the Spirit begins to move you and guide you. You find yourself stepping further away from the former you and turning into this new creation. Who is the Holy Spirit? Most of us know of the Trinity – the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, or Holy Ghost as it is sometimes called. We …

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We Can Trust Him When We Break

  Have you broken anything?  I think we break a dish almost every week in our house.    Cars break down, dishes break, toys break, trees break… everything breaks.   I often wonder if there is a point to things breaking? I don’t always know why things have to break but I do know that God can use broken things and in fact, sometimes breaking is essential.   Grapes have to be broken to make wine. Olives have to be crushed to make oil. Tomatoes have to be crushed to make spaghetti sauce. You get the point, but did you …

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We Can Trust Him On Our Journey

I’ll never forget climbing the steep, rocky mountain sides of Petra… on a mule!! If you’re unfamiliar, Petra is an ancient city in Jordan that dates back to 300BC.  It is one of the world wonders as it used to be a thriving civilization. Everything there is carved in rocks that are about 600 ft tall. Houses, temples, amphitheatres are all carved into rocks.  Perhaps the most recognizable site in Petra is The Treasury. Most of you have probably seen this in the movie “Indiana Jones”. The treasury is 130 ft tall and the rocks surrounding The Treasury are about …