Devotable is a daily devotion project seeking to encourage believers, reach the lost, and spread the gospel as far as we can. Come join us as we connect with God daily!
Daily Devotion - Episode 297 - Christmas Upside Down
Daily Devotion -Philippians 2:5-8 - Christmas Upside Down
Read Philippians 2:5-8 NIV
I watch the dazzling lights of the Christmas tree and the smiling faces of my friends. A happy family gathered around the tree, laughing and spreading good vibes. I am thankful to be with them this Christmas but I can't participate fully in their excitement and joy. There is a coldness in my stomach, and a hot tear is burning in my eyes. This Christmas is so much different – a Christmas upside down. Nobody can understand my pain.
And then I hear this gentle voice in my thoughts, "I can. I understand you, my child and I deeply care."
On Christmas Eve we celebrate the glorious night when God enters our world as a baby. But for the rest of the universe, such an act equals unexplained humiliation. God, the Creator of the universe, formed into a normal human being, lived a life limited by the flesh, and died nailed to a cross. Why?
To become Immanuel - God with us, He needed to become one of us, subject to the limitations and needs of the flesh. In this way, He is fully able to empathize with our weaknesses and struggles and to intercede for us as our High Priest. (Hebrew 4:15 NIV)
As fully man, Jesus can understand us completely, more than any other human being on this planet. And as fully God He is able to help and comfort us perfectly.
Christ's birth and death are an example of how God can turn something good even in the darkest hours in history. The cross and the resurrected Christ prove that there is nothing strong enough to take away our reason to have joy in the Lord.
Living in this time of history is not easy. The world seems out of control with a global pandemic erasing our normal, sending waves of uncertainty, chaos, and fear. Maybe you are tempted to feel abandoned by God in such a time as this.
Pondering the wonder of the incarnation that introduced God's Kingdom, I am awed and humbled. My heart is aching but the Healer is at work. He is still sitting on the throne; He is still the master of the world's history. He was, He is and He is to come.
Read the full devotion at https://devotableapp.com/daily-devotion-philippians-2-5-8-christmas-upside-down/
Daily Devotion - Episode 296 - The Passover Lamb
Daily Devotion - Luke 2:8-12 - The Passover Lamb
Read Luke 2:8-12
Luke 2:8-12 was the first scripture I recall memorizing as a child; yet it wasn’t the result of attending Sunday School because we were not a church-going family. No, this scripture memorization was the result of my brothers and I watching a Christmas special on TV—specifically “A Charlie Brown Christmas.” And what better theologian to share this message than the thumb-sucking, blanket-wielding cartoon character, Linus Van Pelt. And who would think that through the medium of an animated Christmas special, God would have Charles M. Schultz, Linus’ creator, share this profound truth about the Passover Lamb. Remarkably so, even now, this gospel truth is still being shared over the airwaves through this program
The Passover Lamb from Bethlehem
But what was so special about the shepherds that the angel appeared to? And why Bethlehem? Why not Jerusalem, which was also referred to as “David’s city”? It was in and around Bethlehem where the passover lambs were raised that were sacrificed in the Temple. The shepherds, though considered lowly and unimportant, were charged with raising and tending those spotless, unblemished lambs.
Jesus is referred to as the Lamb of God. He was the ultimate Passover Lamb. So, in order for the words spoken by the prophet Micah to be fulfilled, Jesus had to be born in Bethlehem.
Read Micah 5:2
Did I know and understand this when I memorized the lines that Linus spoke as I watched as a child? No, but like Mary, I treasured these words, this profound truth in my heart. I am warmed in my soul every Christmas when Linus takes the stage to recite these verses, telling Charlie Brown and the entire viewing audience, the true reason for Christmas.
What about you, friend? Will you take the Baby Jesus from the manger this Christmas to be your Passover Lamb? To be your resurrected Savior? Will you take the angel at his word, “A savior, which is Christ the LORD.” The shepherds rejoiced and were the first to find Jesus, what about you?
Read the full devotion at https://devotableapp.com/daily-devotion-luke-2-8-12-the-passover-lamb/
Daily Devotion - Episode 295 - Learning to Behold God
Daily Devotion - Isaiah 6:1-7 - Learning to Behold God
Read Isaiah 6:1-7
What stands out to you in this passage? This is one of my favorite passages in the Bible. I find this particular scene to be incredibly evocative—it makes me want to behold God. It stirs such awe and wonder within me. He leaves me awe-struck. You may have read this particular story before and, if so, I encourage you to put yourself in the story. Try to imagine what is happening in this incredible scene!
How would you have reacted if you saw God in all His splendor?
Isaiah's first response is repentance. He immediately confesses his sinful state when confronted with the pure holiness of Almighty God. Here we see that God doesn't use His omnipotent glory to punish or demean the lowly Isaiah. Instead, He honors Isaiah's humility and heals him. And God does the same for us too! When we understand our sinful nature and humbly confess our sins to God, He extends forgiveness, healing, and freedom to us.
God is good and God is great. We see both of these attributes in full display in this wondrous story.
Isaiah's repentance is a beautiful form of worship, which is just as incredible as the angels' response to God's glory in this passage. These amazing creatures (who are so weirdly described that I can't even fully picture them) were declaring God's holiness. They were speaking truth, calling to each other the sweet song about God's character. They were proclaiming His goodness to whoever would listen.
Isaiah likely went through a roller coaster of emotions in this passage: sorrow, fear, awe, lament, and more. These verses remind me that no matter how we're feeling or what we've been through, God's greatness is still true. His holiness is still intact. But He isn't out of sync with how we're feeling, nor is He dismissive of us. God meets with us because He loves us. He is gentle, caring, and kind while also being righteous, just, and holy.
We serve an immensely glorious God who seeks to be with us. No matter how we're feeling today, let's embrace His presence. Let's behold Him today!
What is God saying to you?
Read the full devotion at https://devotableapp.com/daily-devotion-isaiah-6-1-7-learning-to-behold-god/
Daily Devotion - Episode 294 - Eternal Perspective
Daily Devotion - 2 Corinthians 4:16-18 - Eternal Perspective
Anytime you watch a football game, there will more than likely be questionable calls made by the referees that could ultimately decide the direction of the game. The referees go to the replay booth to watch the game from different perspectives to ensure the right call is made. All people, including Christians, can have a tough time looking at what is right in front of their face which leads them to lose the larger perspective.
Paul had every reason to lose heart. He was beaten, mocked, shipwrecked, and brought to the point of death all for the cross of Christ. He could have endured any one of those moments and lost his eternal perspective. Paul points to the truth that although our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day.
We are more like Christ now than we were twelve hours ago. You are more like Christ now than when you first started reading this. Understanding sanctification is important for believers to rightly interpret what happens in our life from the perspective that it is transforming us to look more like Christ.
Change of Perspective
Paul calls what he is going through “light momentary affliction.”
Everything in your life must be put in the perspective of eternity. The election chaos that has happened lately is “light momentary affliction” compared to eternity. The current trials you are facing in your life today are “light momentary affliction” compared to eternity. The affliction you face today Paul would say is “preparing for you an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison.”
Be encouraged in this truth that what you face today is minuscule compared to eternity. This is not to say that the problems you face are small. But you can learn to look at them with the perspective of eternity.
Hope for the Future
Paul had hope.
There is hope for us as believers today who have submitted to the Lordship of Jesus that we are being prepared for an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison.
Read the full devotion at https://devotableapp.com/daily-devotion-2-corinthians-4-16-18-eternal-perspective/
Daily Devotion - Episode 293 - Spiritual Courage
Daily Devotion - Psalm 27:14 - Spiritual Courage
I think you’ll agree with me when I say finding spiritual courage in times of fear isn’t easy. Yes, fear is a powerful foe. It prevents me from living in faith and causes anxiety. I experience a loss of control and find myself alone.
The coronavirus pandemic is an excellent example of how fear engulfs people’s mindset. This unfortunate virus outbreak created a social environment filled with uncertainty and full of unrealistic behaviors. The reason for society’s fearful response is its threat to human life.
In fact, many governments across the globe took drastic measures to prevent the spread of Covid-19. They imposed strict rules and jailed people for violation of those ordinances. Those well-intentioned efforts are fear-driven.
This widespread sickness is but one illustration of how fear penetrates the mind and soul of individuals. Many other life circumstances stir up unwanted feelings based on self-centered fears.
So what’s the solution to fear?
Here’s something we both can agree on; Jesus gives an inner-strength unlike any known to humanity. The result of abiding in Christ is spiritual courage that evaporates fear. We discover a Christian confidence to live in peace.
When Judas betrayed Christ Jesus and turned Him over for His execution (Mark 14:43-46) the world bear witness to an exceptional display of fearlessness. Our Messiah showed spiritual courage more powerful than any known to humanity. In fact, He took on every torturous act man inflicted with grace.
The key that unlocks Christ’s courage is praying from the heart. Prayer opens up the door to God’s ear. When I pray with a humble spirit, then Christ takes my hand and strengthens my soul. In return, the Holy Spirit takes away the fear and replaces it with courage.
How do you overcome fear?
Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord! Psalm 27:14 ESV
Read the full devotion at https://devotableapp.com/daily-devotion-psalm-27-14-spiritual-courage/
Daily Devotion - Episode 292 - To Him Who Overcomes
Daily Devotion - Revelation 2:7 - To Him Who Overcomes
It’s very clear in the bible that all true Christians are to live a life that overcomes. Revelations 2:7 says “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes I will give to eat from the tree of life, which is in the midst of the Paradise of God.”
Which one of us does not want to eat from that tree of life? However, for us to do that, we must live an overcoming life of victory over sin; overcoming all our trials and hardships, being steadfast and unmoveable, dealing with our sinful hearts, and not allowing our circumstances to take away the joy and peace we have in Christ.
I must admit, there have been many, many times throughout my journey that I failed in this area. I have been moved by jealousy and tempted to complain, but I was determined to cleanse those feelings since they did not produce a good outcome.
So, do you allow your life’s circumstances to teach you or destroy you?
Our circumstances can often lead us to make good decisions, but they can also lead us to the wrong ones. Discernment is needed through the guidance of the Holy Spirit alone. Learn from those whom the Lord has put into your life.
Psalm 119:11 NKJV reads Your word I have hidden in my heart, That I might not sin against You.
As I ponder on the above verse, I realize what the key is to overcoming hurt, temptations, and teachable moments. I must, without a shadow of a doubt, hide God's words in my heart to stay steadfast on his promises. That is the key for me to be pleasing in his sight and for me to walk worthy of my calling. To him who overcomes, we must read and listen to God's word, and be teachable through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit each day.
Finally, my brethren, Hebrews 12:1 says Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us,
May the peace of our Lord Jesus be with you all as you strive to overcome sin in this life.
Read the full devotion at https://devotableapp.com/daily-devotion-revelation-2-7-to-him-who-overcomes/
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