Good morning! Today is the first Thursday of the year. The Lord has so much in store for you today and throughout the year. Listen closely enough to hear Him speak. Attune your ears to His voice and wise counsel. Trust Him in the quiet place in your heart and in the chaos of the day. He’s with you. Enjoy your day and today’s reading.
“17 As Jesus was going up to Jerusalem, he took the twelve disciples aside privately and told them what was going to happen to him. 18 “Listen,” he said, “we’re going up to Jerusalem, where the Son of Man will be betrayed to the leading priests and the teachers of religious law. They will sentence him to die. 19 Then they will hand him over to the Romans to be mocked, flogged with a whip, and crucified. But on the third day he will be raised from the dead.”” – Matthew 20:17-19 NLT
Have you ever been in a situation where someone was trying to prepare you for good or bad news? Did you understand the reason why they took special care with the words they were about to speak? Did the suspense drive you crazy? Did you simply stop them, and say – just tell me (out with it already)? Or did you listen to every word and ponder them in your heart?
Well these verses, share a moment where this is at least the fourth time Jesus predicted his own death (Matthew 12:40, 16:20, 17:22-23). He gave the disciples the details, this time as before, he shared that he will be raised from the dead on the third day.
Just as Jesus was preparing the disciples for the things ahead, through the Words in the Bible He is also equipping us for the hope we have in Him because of what He did on the cross and was raised from the grave.
Brothers and sisters, we need to live with the constant reminder that sin and death were conquered on the cross. We need to walk in victory in spite of the darts the enemy continues to shoot at us. It’s time to walk in the freedom God freely gives to us.
Today, whether you are having an amazing day or feeling a bit discouraged, put on your Ephesians 6:10-18 armor:
“10 A final word: Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil. 12 For w are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore, put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle you will still be standing firm. 14 Stand your ground, putting on the belt of truth and the body armor of God’s righteousness. 15 For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared. 16 In addition to all of these, hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil. 17 Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.”
and keep pressing forward – knowing in Christ we have the victory over sin and death.
Father God, thank you for your love and mercy toward us. Lord, we can say that over and over again, but it will never be enough thanks and praise for all that you have done for us and continue to do. Lord, thank you for preparing the disciples hearts for what was to come. Lord, as you prepared their hearts, continue to prepare us and equip us for today and all the days you ordained for us to breathe and live on the earth. Lord, we desire to follow you. Lead us to the places you desire for us to go. Shield us from the attacks that will knock us off balance, help us remain focused and not lose sight of you and what you are doing in us and in our lives. Lord, you are Alpha and Omega, our beginning and end, our Provider, our Comforter and our Peace. Lord, have your way in us. Use us until there is nothing left to use. Transform us delay to become Your servants. Lord, how can we serve you today? Show us. In Jesus name, amen.
362 more days left in the year – Lord use them all to change and equip us for your glory.
Keep praying! Keep seeking! Keep trusting!
Save The Date
Saturday, March 2, 2019 is our next event for volunteers, community workers and staff of dependent living facilities/organizations. It is designed to refresh and restore volunteers, staff and ministry workers who serve the community and/or work at dependent living organizations/facilities. If you are interested in participating in a day of refreshing and restoration email us your RSVP to: firstname.lastname@example.org, by Monday, February 25, 2019.
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