Daily Devotional for Wednesday August 12, 2009
One of the Great Joys in my Life is to Encourage You in Your Life
(Hebrews Chapter 11)
One of the great joys in my life is to try each day to encourage you in your day-to-day life. NEVER FORGET . . . THERE ARE NO DO-OVERS IN LIFE. We get one shot at this journey, and that is it. Even more important, it is a very short journey that can end at any moment. I want to encourage you today to go for all God gives you to do, with all that you have. Have the courage to LIVE your life with all that you have.
MAKE YOUR LIFE COUNT FOR GOD!!!
I have always enjoyed history. Two of my favorite television channels are the History Channel and ESPN Classic. In school I loved American History, the incredible stories of how our nation was founded and all of the various wars that we have been engaged in throughout our 233 years. Being a sports fan, I enjoy reading about those who pioneered the games of football, basketball, and baseball. So I guess it was natural for me to love the great stories in the Bible, the greatest history book of all time. I also love to read the writings of the Jewish historian Josephus. Studying the history of the church throughout the years has been a passion of mine. What makes history the most exciting though, is not just the great events, but the men and women who were responsible for and made those great events happen.
Only God knows how many billions of people have lived throughout human history. The fact is, we each make this journey called life just once. It is a very brief journey measured by an average of only 50 some years. Whatever opportunity we may have to put our stamp on this world we are living in, to contribute to history, happens in those few years. Should Christ tarry in His return, the history those in future generations will read about is being made each and every day right now by those who are alive right now . . . INCLUDING YOU!
With the understanding that this is a brief journey we are on, we should be motivated to get the most out of each and every day. Our focus each day should be on fulfilling our reason for being alive, and that is to serve and glorify the Lord through our lives. I have written previously that the greatest legacy we can leave is the lives we have influenced for Christ throughout our journey. We will live on in those God has brought across our path during our years here on earth. In serving Him, we should not be afraid to dream big. You see my friend, we have a big God. He is only limited by our faith.
The Bible tells us that the people perish "where there is no vision". What God needs in these last days, more than ever, is a people sold out to Him, not afraid to dream big dreams and have total faith in Him. Every day people die and will be forever separated from God because they do not know Christ as their Savior. Every day people all over the world are dealing with the trials and tribulations of everyday life, hurting, without hope because they do not know Jesus. God has called us to be the light to this dark world. We must allow Him to use our lives to be that light in the midst of the darkness so many live in. That is what He asks me to do each day, and what He asks you to do each day. As we are faithful over a little, "He makes us ruler over much". He will use our lives to whatever degree we allow Him to use us.
Our motivation is critical. The Bible teaches in many places that we are to set our desires on the things of heaven, not on earth. You can spend your entire life trying to be the best athlete, the best businessman. the most successful actress, the recording artist who sells the most records, the top military man in your country, a scientist who makes many wonderful discoveries, or the best at whatever profession you want to name, and you may succeed. But unless you were doing it for the Lord, allowing the Lord to use your success to bring His message of hope and love through Christ to many people, the best you can hope for is a paragraph in the history books that one day will no longer cease to exist. That means your lifetime accomplishments are temporal at best. That is why when our motivation is Heaven-bound, the accomplishments have an eternal significance in the changed hearts and lives of people.
I love you and care about you so much. I realize many of you are being buried with the cares of this world. I work hard daily to encourage you, pray for you, try to help you overcome these distractions, since they keep you from fully focusing on all God has planned for your life. It is a tactic of the enemy to keep us so distracted that we aren't able to be all God intends for us to be. I am praying for you today to see victory over these issues, and while you are in the midst of those battles, know that God has more for you to do. The fact is, there will always be battles in our life, always be distractions. We must deal with those battles, but never lose sight of the fact God has a plan and purpose for our life.
Many say I'll serve God when my life is straight. Guess what, your life is never going to be 100% straight, and you are giving the enemy a victory he doesn't deserve when you do that. Every great man and woman of God fought battles in their personal life. That is part of the human condition. The difference was that they didn't let those battles stop them from being all God wanted them to be and serving Him with their life.
It is no accident that you are reading this message today. It is no accident that we are living at this very moment in human history. We can either just live out our time or we can use this precious gift God has given us to serve Him and glorify Him. I want to personally challenge you today to take 15 minutes during the next 24 hours. Get alone with God. Just you and God. Pray this prayer, "Dear God, here I am. You know all about me. You know my weaknesses and my strengths. You know the battles I am facing in my life right now. But I believe that you have a perfect plan for my life. I want to surrender myself to you this very moment so that your plan for my life might be fulfilled. It is NOT my life, it belongs to you. Show me what you want me to do, and I will do it. Today is the day. Now is the time. Guide me and direct me to do Your will. In Jesus' name, AMEN".
Now spend some time and meditate on God, and I promise you the Holy Spirit will begin to speak to you. God will open doors in your life, and He will reveal to you through the Word, through prayer, through other people, and through circumstances what it is He is asking you to do. He will start small, and as you are faithful in a little, he will give you more.
TODAY IS THE DAY, AND NOW IS THE TIME!!! It is our turn to make history, ETERNAL HISTORY in the lives of hurting people!!!
In His love and service,
Your friend and brother in Christ,