Daily Devotional – 11/17/16 “I’m willing!”

In Daniel 3, the 3 Hebrew boys had been summoned by the king because they wouldn’t bow down in worship to a golden image. When they reached the king he gave them one last chance to bow down. He told them in Daniel 3:15, “I will give you one more chance to bow down and worship the statue I have made when you hear the sound of the musical instruments. But if you refuse, you will be thrown immediately into the blazing furnace. And then what god will be able to rescue you from my power?” Now these boys could have been frighten at the sound of the threat. They could have hung their head in defeat and gave in. They could have turned their back on God but instead they replied, in Daniel 3:16-17, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to defend ourselves before you. If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God whom we serve is able to save us. He will rescue us from your power, Your Majesty.” Oh but that’s not the part I need you to get. For the boys said in Daniel 3:18, “But even if he doesn’t, we want to make it clear to you, Your Majesty, that we will never serve your gods or worship the gold statue you have set up.”

I need you to understand that giving in/up isn’t an option. Stop settling because you’re fearful of what might happen. Stop giving in because you don’t understand. Stop giving up because it looks like it might hurt. Baby, you have to get to a place where you’re willing even when it doesn’t make sense. See, God never places us in a position to hurt or harm us. You don’t have to believe me. Come here Abraham who was told to sacrifice his only son but didn’t have too. Come here Job who lost everything and everybody but got back double. Come here mother who had to bury your only child but you still have your mind. Come here daddy who lost the only means of money in the household yet still maintaining. Chile, God never leaves or forsakes but you have to be willing. What do I mean? Being willing to go into the fire shows your trust in God’s ability to remove the heat. Being willing to go into the darkness, shows your trust in God to be your light. Being willing to go into the battle, shows your trust in God to be your protector. Being willing to fill out the application shows your trust in God to be your provider. You may not understand but trust God enough to say, I’m willing!

im-willing

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Daily Devotional – 1/27/16 “Where does your soul need restoration?”

I recently started school, again, and last night was the first time I attended chapel. (It was great.) The speaker asked the question, “Where does your soul need restoration?” Wow! See, many times we ask God to restore us but what exactly are you asking for? I mean, what part of your soul needs to be restored? No, I am not saying you have to babble on and on in your plea to God but sometimes you need to be specific. “God, restore my mind.” “God, restore my health.” “God, restore my strength.” “God, restore in me your word.” “God, restore my family.” “God, restore my finances.” “God, restore my ministry.” “God, restore my marriage.” Sometimes, you need to get explicit in your asking. Look, restore means to bring something back to an earlier and better condition or to give somebody new strength or vigor or to return somebody to a previously held rank, office, or position or even to reestablish or put back something that was once but is no longer there. So where does your soul need restoration?

Beloved, every now and then you need to ask God, “Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and uphold me with a willing spirit (Psalm 51:12).” Every once in a while, you need to stop crying and complaining and pray for your soul. Because it is then that you’ll be restored. Yes, you’ll have to go through some things but that’s because we still fall short of God’s glory but don’t complain because it should be worse. This is why God asks the question of us like He did Israel and Judah in Jeremiah 30:15, “Why do you cry out over your wound, your pain that has no cure? Because of your great guilt and many sins I have done these things to you.” Oh but then He says in Jeremiah 30:16-17, “But all who devour you will be devoured; all your enemies will go into exile. Those who plunder you will be plundered; all who make spoil of you I will despoil. But I will restore you to health and heal your wounds,’ declares the LORD, ‘because you are called an outcast, Zion for whom no one cares.” So come out of that woe is me closet. Cut off the ‘I can’t do it,” reality show. Turn off the ‘what if I fail,” radio station. And get away from ‘I wouldn’t do it if I were you,’ folk. Get down on your knees, get in your prayer closet or your prayer place and ask God to restore you. Stop walking around here with your lips and heart closed off to God. Fast until you have clear insight on the part of your soul that needs restoration so that you can pray specifically for it and it be restored. Where does your soul need restoration?