Daily Devotional for Thursday December 20, 2018
Be like the shepherds!!!
***A MOST BLESSED CHRISTMAS FROM MYSELF AND THOSE WHO LABOR AT LIVEPRAYER FOR YOU AND YOUR FAMILY TO HAVE A MOST BLESSED CHRISTMAS!!! A Christmas blessing: https://liveprayer.com/mc18/
***DAILY PERSONAL PRAYER FOR YOU: Dear Lord, thank you for giving me another day of life. Let me use this day to bring glory and honor to you! You are the Creator, the giver of life. Never let me take even one day, one hour, for granted. Use me this day to bless those I come in contact with, that you may be glorified! In the name of Jesus I pray. AMEN!!!
SPECIAL CHRISTMAS SEASON THOUGHT! God is the creator of all things good and perfect. Satan takes the perfection of God and perverts it...EVERYTHING! Even most with hardened hearts who hate God. have a soft spot for the Christmas season. We are all aware of the God-haters attempts to cleanse our culture of anything to do with God, such as the never-ending attempts around Christmas to remove public displays such a nativity scenes. However this Christmas, anything to do with this season is under attack in an attempt to ruin the “joy” this time of year brings out in most people!
Mattel, creator of the iconic Christmas gift “Barbie,” is deciding to create two male dolls who are married for your children. There have been many visible “transsexual Santa’s” this season. Rudolph lover are bigoted since he is a maligned reindeer, verbally bullied by his father, made fun of for his “disability,” while his elf friend Hermey is ridiculed for wanting to be a dentist. Classic Christmas song “Santa Baby” is sexist. Candy canes are evil since they are shaped like a J...for Jesus. One church protesting immigration policy put the baby Jesus in its’ nativity scene in a CAGE. Charlie Brown’s Christmas is intolerant to other religions for the scene where Linus tells Charlie Brown the real meaning of Christmas by reciting a passage from the Christmas story in chapter 2 of Luke’s gospel. A teacher of 5-6 year olds told her students there is no Santa Claus. Next to the nativity scene in the Illinois statehouse is a statue worshipping satan. God is a sexual predator for impregnating Mary without her consent.
These are clear and current examples of what happens to a culture where the church has purposely departed to its’ own safe, comfortable, and PROFITABLE space, leaving the culture WE ARE PART OF to the wolves of satan to destroy. This is why Jesus told His followers when in Matthew 5:13-16 He said, “Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men. Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.”
Believe it or not, Christmas is only 5 days away! I was taught very early in life that you can learn much by watching people. In the day Jesus was born, a shepherd was the equivalent of a busboy or dishwasher in today's society. It was a very lowly position and these were not the type of people that you would think to look at as role models. Let me remind you that you can never judge a person by the house they live in, the car they drive, or the job they hold. It is our heart God sees and judges.
The shepherds on the night Jesus was born must have been pretty important men in the eyes of God because it was to those men, that He revealed the birth of His son in Bethlehem's manger that night. While there are many great spiritual lessons that you can learn from the shepherds, the one I want to focus on today is their conduct after they had visited the manger and saw with their own eyes the baby Jesus.
The scripture reference today tells us that they left praising God for all they had seen and were shown. Praising God. I have talked about this many times in the past, and will continue to talk about it because it is one element of our faith that we just don't practice enough. So much of our prayer time, so much of our focus is on our problems and circumstances, that we often forget to spend time each day just thanking and praising God for all that He does for us each and every day.
In the past month, a lady in Baltimore, Maryland emailed a request for God to restore her marriage. Her husband had left her for another woman. Within 3 weeks the husband had come home, recommitted his life to Christ, and they were in Christian counseling to work out their problems. For those of you today with marriage problems, God is still in the restoration business.
A man in Newark, New Jersey requested prayer the day before open heart surgery. He emailed us a week later telling us all had gone well and the doctors told him he would make a full and complete recovery. For those battling health problems today, God is still in the healing business.
A single mother of 4 in St. Louis asked us for prayer after she lost her job. 2 weeks later God had given her a better job, with more money. For those of you in need of a financial blessing today, God is still in the business of providing for His children.
On the 5th day after we started Liveprayer in 1999, our prayer partner on the live video feed was praying for a person as they accepted Christ as Savior. The next day an email came in from Hong Kong from a man who had lost his business, was thinking of suicide, and somehow logged on to our site. As the prayer partner was leading the person in the sinner's prayer, this man in Hong Kong prayed to accept Jesus too! God is still in the business of saving souls!
Every day we get incredible praise reports of how God has touched lives and worked miracles in thousands of people who have visited Liveprayer during a time of great need in their life!!!
I want to encourage you today to learn from the shepherds and never neglect to thank God for all He does for you each and every day. Blessings that you take for granted. It is through your praise, through you telling others all that God has done for you, that they might increase their faith to allow God to work in their life. Your praise report gives others going through the same situation or any other the hope and strength to go on, trusting God for their miracle.
Hope is the greatest gift you can give to another person, and our hope is in Jesus Christ!!!
I love you and care about you so much. I pray today that you will not forget to give God the praise He deserves each and every day. I appreciate more than you can know the praise reports that we get every day because that keeps all of us here at Liveprayer encouraged. After nearly 20 years, we have over 13 million praise reports archived.
God not only hears our prayers, but answers our prayers!!!
My challenge to you today is to be like the shepherds. God blesses you so that you can share His blessings with others, to encourage them! Be like the shepherds and tell those you meet along the path of your life about this wonderful friend you have named Jesus Christ!
In His love and service,
Your friend, brother, and co-laborer in Christ,