Daily 797

He Is The Real Gift

It is right to enjoy the good gifts of God in the way that He designed them to be enjoyed because that’s why He gives them to us. The sights, sounds, smells, tastes and touches of the created world are supposed to be enjoyed because God made them to send and made us to receive … pleasure. But rather than enjoying them too little (ingratitude) or too much (idolatry), let us enjoy them as they were intended, as a catalyst for treasuring the Gift-Giver far beyond what He might give to us. The gifts that God sends us are wonderful; but they are nowhere near as wonderful as Him. He is the real gift!

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Daily 780

Not To Us, But To God Be The Glory

Christians should talk more about what God does than about what we do. Even when we speak of what we do, it should be as a platform to talk about the enabling power, provision and presence of God in our lives. We don’t have it all together. We won’t get it all together. We can’t keep it all together. None of us wear capes as if we are super Christians; we wear the righteousness of Jesus. None of us have magical powers that enable us to do things; we have the power of the Holy Spirit. None of us belong on the throne of worship; we belong to a Heavenly Father Who does. Not to us, but to God be the glory!

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Daily 759

God Is Greater

God is greater.  A chef prepares delicious and nutritious foods, but God made flavors and taste buds and ingredients and nutrients.  An engineer builds strong and magnificent structures, but God created angles and dimensions and textures and materials.  An artist paints beautiful canvases, but God invented shapes and colors and strokes and imaginations. We do whatever we do only because God does what He does. The talents to use the things we see, hear, smell, taste and touch in this world all come from God.  He invents and inspires every good thing that we use, arrange, perform, create or do. God is greater.

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Daily 731

Most Thankful For Him

The sweetest of all thankfulness isn’t superficial; it goes deep. It goes past feeling happy that certain things are in our lives. It goes past naming those things so it is known that we appreciate them. It goes past even tracing their origin back to God and thanking the Giver for all of our blessings. There is a delightful, wonderful, beautiful experience when our gratitude is not merely directed toward God for His gifts, but toward God for Himself. We give thanks that among many things, He is a holy, loving, kind and gracious Father. The way to be best thankful for all that God has given us is to be most thankful for Him.

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Daily 730

Offer Thanks For His Giving

We can be grateful for many things, and we should be. We can be grateful to many people, and we should be. We can be grateful on many occasions, and we should be. But there is One who makes every good thing, every good person and every good occasion in our lives possible by His amazing grace. God sent Jesus to be perfect for us because we aren’t, absorb wrath for sin so we don’t, and secure the blessings for us that we can’t. Jesus paid our sin penalty and paid for our special privileges so that we might be forgiven, freed and favored. Today and every day, let us offer thanks for His giving.

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Daily 724

Grace Points The Way To Be With Jesus

All of God’s gracious actions toward us are designed to lead us toward Him. He means for us to respond to His gifts not by seeking more gifts, but by seeking Jesus … to know, trust, serve, obey, honor, enjoy, worship and love Him as we follow Him. Grace enables and encourages us to take steps with Jesus. When we do, we grow in our relationship with Him as we go with Him wherever He leads to do whatever He says. God woos us with His kindness along the way because He wants us to be together every step in this life until we are with Him forever in the life to come. Grace points the way to be with Jesus.

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Daily 722

He Gives Grace, We Give Glory

We require it. We request it. We receive it. We rely on it. But let’s be clear about it… Grace isn’t given because we are great, but because God is. The grace of God testifies to the glory of God. When it is received and rightly understood, it results in worship for the One who gives it. It should prompt in us as receivers a celebration of Him and commendation of Him as a generous, powerful, wise, good, rich, holy and loving God. Those who think they merit what they receive have little praise for God; those who know all they have is a gift have much praise for God. Today, as He gives grace to us, let us give glory to Him.

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Daily 674

Conviction And Celebration

Christians should know two feelings better than anyone else: conviction and celebration. We must never lose sight of this: our sin is great. We must never lose hope in this: our Savior is greater. A right response to our unfolding transformation as we follow Jesus in faith is the ongoing rhythm of repenting of our sin and rejoicing in our salvation. We were guilty, yet acquitted. We were undeserving, yet rewarded. We were trapped, yet freed. May we know the humbling, exalting experience of knowing both our sinfulness and our Savior. Let us be glad in this: Our sin may have begun our story, but the grace of God will end it.

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Daily 672

The Prayer That Works

Many people feel like their prayer isn’t “working” so they barely or rarely pray at all. Prayer, as with all of life, should be about God being honored in us and us being happy in Him. This is why we are to pray for… The hallowing of His Name. The coming of His kingdom. The doing of His will. This results in His glory and our good! Know this… Prayer isn’t about filling up our kingdoms with what we think will make us happy; it is about being filled up by all He offers in His kingdom so we can actually be happy. You can be sure of this: the prayer that “works” is the prayer that “wants” all that God has for us in Jesus.

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Daily 667

Praising Him And Pleasing Him

A heart that worships God strives by grace to put God at the heart of everything else. We increasingly, though imperfectly, want Him to become the center of what, when, where, why and how we do what we do. Our adoration of Him overflows into allegiance to Him. Our gladness in Him leads us to do what will glorify Him. Our love for Him compels us to live for Him. Worship changes how we think about our time, money, relationships, priorities and life purpose, and how we carry out the plans of God for us concerning these things. May God produce in us today both a delight to praise Him and a desire to please Him.

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Daily 661

Doing Good In His Name

Let’s be honest: It’s tempting to quit doing good in this world when the good we do is not noticed by others, appreciated by others, reciprocated by others or supported by others. Yet, we must remember that none of this is the reason why we do good in the first place. We do good because God has been good to us, is being good to us and will continue to be good to us forevermore. It is His image that we show to the world when we let our lights shine, so that He might be glorified. What a wonderful reminder for today: God is good, and we get to make Him look good, when we do good in His Name.

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