Devotionals

CP Blogs do not necessarily reflect the views of The Christian Post. Opinions expressed are solely those of the author(s).

Posted 10/24/14 at 7:08 PM | Anna Diehl

Overcoming Survivor Guilt

Satan’s condemnation comes in many forms. Survivor guilt is one of them. In this mentality, we find ourselves intensely focused on the past, we find ourselves wishing we could change things that we cannot, and we find ourselves feeling responsible for things which were not our fault. Lastly, we find ourselves feeling bad for being alive. This poisonous cocktail comes straight from the enemies of God and it is designed to keep you spiritually beat down and mentally miserable. In this post, we’ll identify the false beliefs that are fueling your intense feelings of guilt and teach you some critical truths about why you are still alive on this planet.

LIE #1: YOU WERE SUPPOSED TO DIE.

God is the only One who controls how long people live on this planet, when they die, and how they die. God is not like a gambler who rolls dice at random and sighs when he doesn’t get the numbers he hoped for. God ALWAYS gets His way. Every move He makes is intentional. His timing is exact. His methods are perfect. There are no random deaths in God’s universe. There are no accidents, coincidences, or unfortunate mistakes. Luck is a concept that Satan invented to distract us from the fact that everything God does to us and around us is intentional and achieving some positive purpose from His perspective. FULL POST

Posted 10/24/14 at 6:25 PM | Anna Diehl

Demons Cannot Control Your Prayers

Can demons control how your soul prays to God? Can they block your prayers from getting through to Him? Absolutely not. But they will try to make you think they can by scrambling your thoughts. And if you don’t understand the difference between your thoughts and your prayers, you will end up quite distressed. So this is where we need to do some explaining about how prayer actually works.

Your soul (or spirit) is not the same as your brain. When you die, your soul will go on to be with God while your physical brain will remain inside your physical corpse and the whole package will rot away. Your body is merely an earth suit—it’s your soul’s vehicle for getting around on this planet. And just as a man is separate from the car that he is driving, so also your soul is separate from the flesh suit that it’s currently walking about in. Yet the two things do have a relationship, and one affects the other. If a man steps hard on the brake pedal, his car will be jolted to a stop. If the car’s engine suddenly stops working, the man could find himself crashed into a tree. In the same way, your body and soul interact with each other. When one component is distressed, the other notices and is affected by it. But being affected is quite different than being controlled. Your body, mind and emotions do not control the activity of your soul, nor can your soul always control your body. These two things have separate wills, and this is what Paul is talking about when he describes doing what he doesn’t want to do as the will of his flesh overwhelms the will of his soul (see Romans 7). FULL POST

Posted 10/24/14 at 6:05 PM | Anna Diehl

Punished for Obeying

Sometimes our efforts to obey God end in disaster. Perhaps we go confidently into a situation that we are certain He’s led us towards, we listen carefully for the Spirit’s guidance the whole time, we obey all of His promptings, yet in the end we find ourselves driven out by our enemies or crawling off in wounded defeat. It’s not surprising that other humans have opposed our work—okay, maybe it is a little surprising when we find our greatest enemies coming from within the ranks of Christendom—but the real shocker is that God let them beat us into the ground without intervening. Why didn’t the walls of their stronghold come crumbling down after we followed all of His instructions? Why didn’t the angel appear beside us in the fiery furnace? Why didn’t He stop the lions from devouring us? Now we’re wounded, broken and miserable—dragging away from our assignment carrying anchors of bitterness, pain and fear that we just can’t shake. It feels like God has punished us for obeying Him. It feels like we built an ark only to have it spring a leak when the flood came. Does this mean we messed up somehow? Did we hear wrong or act wrong or were we somehow sabotaged by our own carnality? FULL POST

Posted 10/24/14 at 6:03 PM | Anna Diehl

The Holy Spirit Doesn’t Overtrain

Once we figure out that going through trials is a critical part of maturing in the faith, the next logical step is to start fretting that we aren’t growing fast enough. Those of you who sincerely want to grow closer to God, yet your lives seem conspicuously devoid of any great stress, can fall for Satan’s deception that you’re falling behind schedule. Just as we take our babies in to doctors to make sure they’re developing normally, we try to find some universal measuring rod that we can compare ourselves with to make sure we’re growing fast enough with God.

The problem is that no such measuring rod exists. Those who think they are ahead of us will sometimes try to suggest that they are some kind of golden standard that we should compare ourselves to, but this is just their arrogance talking. The Holy Spirit has a unique lesson plan for each soul and He is the only One who can give us an accurate progress report. Since He is the encouraging sort, we’re never going to hear Him harping on us about how much time we’ve squandered by fooling around. At any point in time, we’re either listening to God and submitting to His program or we’re not. When we are, He is pleased and He’s not going to waste our conversation time reviewing every mistake we’ve ever made. Once you realize this about God, you can learn to rest in the present and relax. And as soon as you relax, Satan will try to get you unrelaxed. FULL POST

Posted 10/24/14 at 2:07 PM | Christian Post Guest Voices

10 Ways To Love

1. Listen without interrupting. (Proverbs 18)

2. Speak without accusing. (James 1:19)

3. Give without sparing. (Proverbs 21:26)

4. Pray without ceasing. (Colossians 1:9)

5. Answer without arguing. (Proverbs 17:1)

6. Share without pretending. (Ephesians 4:15)

7. Enjoy without complaint. (Philippians 2:14)

8. Trust without wavering. (1 Corinthians 13:7)

9. Forgive without punishing. (Colossians 3:13)

10. Promise without forgetting. (Proverbs 13:12)

I saw these today and wanted to share with you guys! God Bless!

Posted By Andrew Heard

Posted 10/24/14 at 9:51 AM | Joel Osteen

Are You In the Right Frame of Mind?

Photo: Pixabay - Public Domain

In John chapter 5, there was a man who was crippled. For 38 years, he had been lying by the pool of Bethesda, a place where miracles took place constantly. There were actually angels present and whenever an angel would stir the water, the first person who got into the pool would be healed.

I can imagine the first few months that he was there, he had great expectation, thinking, "This is going to be my day. I'm going to be the one who gets healed today." He was passionate. He had enthusiasm. But a month went by and it didn't happen. He probably got a little bit discouraged. And then three months, and it still doesn't happen and he's more discouraged. Then a year…then five years. Now 38 years later, he is still lying by the pool totally convinced that it's never going to happen.

One day, Jesus came by and asked this man a question. He said, "Sir, do you want to get well?" In a sense, that was an odd question. Of course he wanted to get well. He had been lying by the pool 38 years hoping to get in. But, Jesus wanted to see his attitude. FULL POST

Posted 10/24/14 at 9:22 AM | Children's Bible Hour

No Good Deed Bandages

Photo: Pixabay - Public Domain

Mason was busily sweeping the garage when his father pulled into the driveway. "Hi, son," Dad greeted him. "What's new?"

"TJ has chickenpox," announced Mason, putting the broom away.

"And you?" Dad prompted with a sigh. He knew that when Mason did work without being asked, it usually meant he had done something wrong.

"Me?" Mason asked. "I'm fine." Dad waited. "I swept the whole garage." Dad still waited. "Oh, and . . . uh . . . I sort of hit Mr. White's dog with a little stone."

"Sort of?" Dad frowned. "You threw stones at Blackie? Did you hurt him?"

"No--just scared him," said Mason as they went into the house, "but Mr. White got mad. He said he'd come over tonight."

"Hi, Daddy." Four-year-old TJ greeted his father mournfully. "I'm sick.

I got the chickenpoxes, but I fixed em. I sticked bandages on em. See?"

"How silly can you get!" grumbled Mason when he saw his brother. "You can't cure chickenpox by covering up the spots! That might hide them a little bit, but it sure won't make them better!" FULL POST

Posted 10/23/14 at 11:20 AM | Tim Challies

A Deeper and Wider Obedience

It is an experience every Christian knows. You become aware of a sin and come to fear and hate it. You focus all kinds of attention on that sin and on putting it to death. You ask friends to pray for you, and you cry out to God for deliverence. Well and good, right? Well, not necessarily. John Owen has something to say to you: You will not be delivered from this sin until you pursue a much deeper and wider obedience.

Here is how Owen describes it in chapter eight of his great work Overcoming Sin and Temptation:

A man finds any lust to bring him into the condition formerly described; it is powerful, strong, tumultuating, leads captive, vexes, disquiets, takes away peace; he is not able to bear it; wherefore he sets himself against it, prays against it, groans under it, sighs to be delivered, but in the meantime, perhaps, in other duties—in constant communion with God—in reading, prayer, and meditation—in other ways that are not of the same kind with the lust wherewith he is troubled—he is loose and negligent. Let not that man think that ever he shall arrive to the mortification of the lust he is perplexed with. This is a condition that not seldom befalls men in their pilgrimage. FULL POST

Posted 10/22/14 at 4:48 PM | Brittney Moses

A Call to Boldness for Young Believers Full of Faith

http://favim.com/image/458048/

I dont know about you, but Im tired of the world bullying Christians to be silent for the simple fact that its “unreasonable”, misunderstood or contradictory. Its my fear that a generation will shrink back in fear in their classrooms, peer circles, and everyday encounters paralyzed by the opinions of today’s progressive culture. Where “Because I want to and its my life” is accepted as the standard no matter how destructive it may be. Where wisdom is of no value because we’re bombarded with messages through music and media with no substance. That we’ll tip toe around the foundations of our faith and slowly become silent about the things that matter for the sake of avoiding conflict, rejection or even persecution.

But realize that “the servant is no greater than his master”. We have to accept that following Jesus wholeheartedly will always come at a cost. You cannot serve Christ and also serve the god of comfort. So I boldly say: Today and forevermore, choose who you will serve.

Today is the day we stop being ashamed.
Dont be ashamed of your abstinence.
Dont be ashamed of your purity or modesty.
Dont be ashamed of your transformation in Christ.
Dont be ashamed to push for life.
Dont be ashamed to believe Jesus is the way.
Dont be ashamed to believe the Bible is true and says what it means.
As my friend Sue Bohlin says, “Christianity is no more narrow minded than saying 2 + 2 = 4.
If its the truth, its the truth.” FULL POST

Posted 10/22/14 at 3:04 PM | Lori Minutoli

Content With What I Have

Social media had opened the door very wide allowing people to compare lives. It's not a new idea, that's for sure, but it has been made 1000 times easier via images on the Internet. It's something inside of us that desires a connection to something greater than ourselves.

I recently witnessed a person gain great pleasure and self satisfaction when he discovered that a famous musician was using the same guitar that he currently owns. It seemed to elevate his self esteem as pride swelled within him. In a moment he achieved greatness by association.

I have been thinking about that for weeks and realized that many of us do the same thing in all aspects of life. We feel accomplished if we prepare the same meals as great chefs, if we drive the same cars as celebrities, if we wear the latest fashion trends and then see it featured on a program it gives us an internal boost, it validates our worth.

 I created a board on Pinterest entitled "Content With What I Have" as I came to some conclusions to this reality. You see Pinterest is just a bunch of pictures and you pin the ones that you like to your own collections as you would if you ripped them out of magazines and made a dream collage. I soon learned a little bit about myself by noticing trends in my collections. FULL POST

Read more