Verse of the Day – Romans 16:27

To the only wise God be glory forever through Jesus Christ! Amen. — Romans 16:27

Thoughts on Today’s Verse…

All other gods are false, anemic, and dim. Only El Shaddai the Lord God Almighty, Yahweh God of the Covenant, deserves our praise. We praise him for his gift of Jesus to atone for our sins, his gift of mercy to perfect our failings, his gift of patience to help us straighten out our inconsistencies, and ultimately, his gift of love to provide our salvation.

My Prayer…

Only True and Living God, may your glory shine forever in the lives and faithfulness of your people. May your praises always be on my lips and in my heart. May people see your love for them in Christ Jesus, both now, and forevermore. In the name of Jesus I praise and proclaim your glorious majesty. Amen.

The Thoughts and Prayer on Today’s Verse are written by Phil Ware. You can email questions or comments to phil@verseoftheday.com.

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All scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House.

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The Main Event

While watching a fireworks display during a celebration in my city, I became distracted. Off to the right and the left of the main event, smaller fireworks occasionally popped up in the sky. They were good, but watching them caused me to miss parts of the more spectacular display directly above me.

Sometimes good things take us away from something better. That happened in the life of Martha, whose story is recorded in Luke 10:38-42. When Jesus and His disciples arrived in the village of Bethany, Martha welcomed them into her home. Being a good host meant that someone had to prepare the meal for the guests, so we don’t want to be too hard on her.

When Martha complained that her sister Mary wasn’t helping, Jesus defended Mary’s choice to sit at His feet. But the Lord wasn’t saying that Mary was more spiritual than her sister. On occasion Martha seems to have shown more trust in Jesus than Mary did (John 11:19-20). And He wasn’t being critical of Martha’s desire to look after their physical needs. Rather, what the Lord wanted Martha to hear is that in the busyness of our service, listening to Him is the main event.

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Verse of the Day – Psalm 90:14

Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love, that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days. — Psalm 90:14

Thoughts on Today’s Verse…

What’s the secret of having a good day? How about waking up and recognizing that we begin each day just as we ended the previous one — we are in the grip of God’s unfailing love. That should make our hearts stir with love and our voices sing with joy. This song should stir God’s Spirit within us and lead us to a deep and profound thanksgiving that gladdens all of our days. So rather than waking up tired, cranky, and dreading another day, let’s begin this day with a reminder of God’s grace in our daily lives and a reminder of God’s promises in our hearts. Then, I don’t think we’re going to have any problem singing the rest of the day!

My Prayer…

Glorious Master and Eternal Father, thank you for pouring your love and joy into my heart through your Holy Spirit. Fill my heart and satisfy my life with a sense of your abiding and unfailing love. In the name of my loving Savior, Jesus. Amen.

The Thoughts and Prayer on Today’s Verse are written by Phil Ware. You can email questions or comments to phil@verseoftheday.com.

Heartlight is proud to promote Compassion International.

© 1998-2015, Heartlight, Inc. Verseoftheday.com is part of the Heartlight Network.
All scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House.

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Winning the Big One

In every field of endeavor, one award is considered the epitome of recognition and success. An Olympic gold medal, a Grammy, an Academy Award, or a Nobel Prize are among “the big ones.” But there is a greater prize that anyone can obtain.

The apostle Paul was familiar with first-century athletic games in which competitors gave their full effort to win the prize. With that in mind, he wrote to a group of followers of Christ in Philippi: “Whatever were gains to me I now consider loss for the sake of Christ” (Phil. 3:7). Why? Because his heart had embraced a new goal: “I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings” (v. 10). And so, Paul said, “I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me” (v. 12). His trophy for completing the race would be the “crown of righteousness” (2 Tim. 4:8).

Each of us can aim for that same prize, knowing that we honor the Lord in pursuing it. Every day, in our ordinary duties, we are moving toward “the big one”—“the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us” (Phil. 3:14 nlt).

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Verse of the Day – 2 Corinthians 5:21

God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. — 2 Corinthians 5:21

Thoughts on Today’s Verse…

When was the last time you thought of yourself as “the righteousness of God”? What does that mean anyway? It means that we have the best of qualities, found in the best of beings! But we know we are not god-like! We know our fallibility and flaws! We know our imperfections and our inconsistencies! How can we be “the righteousness of God”? Jesus, the perfect and sinless Righteous One of God, became our sin for us so we could be his righteousness. More than grace, that’s a miracle! And a miracle, dear friend of Jesus, is exactly what you are!!

My Prayer…

Thank you, gracious and loving Father, for saving me and making me perfect through your sacrificial gift of your Son. Please use me to communicate your grace and your salvation with someone around me who hasn’t accepted your grace. In the name of Jesus, my older brother and Savior, I pray. Amen.

The Thoughts and Prayer on Today’s Verse are written by Phil Ware. You can email questions or comments to phil@verseoftheday.com.

Heartlight is proud to promote Compassion International.

© 1998-2015, Heartlight, Inc. Verseoftheday.com is part of the Heartlight Network.
All scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House.

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Our Main Concern

Peer pressure is part of everyday life. Sometimes we base our decisions on what other people will think or say rather than on our convictions and on what will please God. We’re worried that we’ll be judged or made fun of.

The apostle Paul experienced his fair share of peer pressure. Some Jewish Christians believed that Gentiles should be circumcised to be truly saved (Gal. 1:7; see 6:12-15). However, Paul stood his ground. He continued to preach that salvation is by grace through faith alone; no further works are required. And for that he was accused of being a self-appointed apostle. They further asserted that his version of the gospel had never received the apostles’ approval (2:1-10).

Despite the pressure, Paul was very clear about whom he served—Christ. God’s approval mattered most, not man’s. He made it his goal not to win the approval of people, but of God (1:10).

Similarly, we are Christ’s servants. We serve God whether people honor or despise us, whether they slander or praise us. One day “each of us will give an account of ourselves to God” (Rom. 14:12). That doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t consider what people think or say, but ultimately, we make pleasing God our main concern. We want to hear our Savior say, “Well done, good and faithful servant!” (Matt. 25:23).

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