Daily Devotional – 10/19/17 “Sifting process!”

You do all you can and it stills feel like you have not done enough. You go to church, not every Sunday but more than you used to. You can’t go to bible study because you work but you have started to read your bible more. You give a little bit towards tithes, you’re working your way up. You’ve cut off all those folk who only call you to fill a need. You don’t lie as much as you used too. You’ve been praying, even though it leaves you a sobbing mess. You’ve even been fasting, although you’ve only gotten up to 6 hours. Yet, it still feels like all hell is breaking loose around you. You’ve stopped spending but money seems tighter than before. You’ve stopped drinking and now that’s all you crave. You replaced writing with cussing but folk are trying you and they are a 4 letter word from being blessed and not the good way. And if things couldn’t get worse, the enemy is calling your name and you’ve contemplated answering. WAIT! Please don’t. Please! It’s only your sifting process.

When Jesus told Simon (Peter), the enemy wanted to sift him like wheat; He didn’t mean the soft flour sifting grandma did when she made biscuits. But He meant the aggressive, sometimes violent shaking wheat has to go through during harvest. This is when the wheat is separated from the stalk and chaff. And it has to get rough in order to ensure there is nothing left, within the wheat that is hard and/or bad. So you see, what you’re going through is rough, right now, but it’s for your good. It is separating you from all the things you once deemed worthy but God determined was worldly. Yes, the enemy is there but only because he bet God you wouldn’t make it through. Prove him wrong by trusting God through the process. Because just like Simon, God is praying your faith does not fail. Fail means to break down or not meet its goal. And just so you know, faith does not fail even when we do. It’s just your sifting process, beloved. It hurts, gets confusing and hurts some more but it has to happen.

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Daily Devotional – 10/11/17 “I know what I heard!”

Sometimes God will send somebody to ask for a portion of your last. And it may happen to be during a time you cannot see how to get more. A time when your drought is at its peak and your refrigerator, cabinets, pantry, gas tank and checking account is bare and there is no check in the mail. A time when you’ve sowed but there’s still no rain for harvest. What do you do? In 1 Kings 17, Elijah shows up at this widow’s home asking for water and a piece of bread, while she is in a place of despair. Her flour barrel is empty but Elijah knows what he heard God say. See, God had already made provisions for her when He told Elijah in 1 Kings 17:9, “Go and live in the village of Zarephath, near the city of Sidon. I have instructed a widow there to feed you.” How else could she feed him if God wouldn’t provide the food? You do remember there’s a drought happening which meant no rain; no rain no harvest, no harvest no flour and no flour no more bread. But Elijah heard what God said, “There will always be flour and olive oil left in your containers until the time when the Lord sends rain and the crops grow again (verse 14)!”

Yes, it seems like everybody needs you when you are in need yourself but will you trust God to provide? Even when you’re being asked for half of your last slice of bread and cannot afford to get more. Even when you are being asked to borrow $20 of the last $30 you have and payday is still 11 days away. Even when you are asked to drive them 30 miles when you only have 50 miles of gas left and no money in your pocket. Will you trust what you heard God say? I know it’s hard when all you see is what’s in front of you but will you trust when God says, “I’ll never leave nor forsake you?” Yea, I may not see it but I know what I heard. I may not have it yet but I know what I heard. They may tell me no, now, but I know what I heard. Checking account low, body filled with pain, the folks are coming to turn off my lights, landlord is at the door and my car won’t start but I know what I heard! “See, the former things have taken place, and new things I declare; before they spring into being, I announce them to you.” – Isaiah 42:9