Tuesday, January 7, 2020

Update

I'm sorry I missed a few. I was in the hospital all day and had "last minute" surgery, but everything is good now. I'm home and sore but recovery shouldn't be bad. See you in a few days, God bless!

Monday, January 6, 2020

Are You a Zombie?


Zombie culture has been fairly popular for more than a decade. Everything from movies to ammunition in the event of a zombie apocalypse have been made (no joke). What are zombies? They are called the walking dead, people who are still moving yet their flesh is rotting (which is not physically possible but that’s beside the point.) Supposedly, zombies can infect the living so that they also become zombies. While zombies are not real, and we are not in danger of a zombie apocalypse, there is a spiritual truth and warning to be taken from this fad.

Thursday, January 2, 2020

Devotions: New Dough or Old Bread


Clean out the old leaven so that you may be a new lump, just as you are in fact unleavened. For Christ our Passover also has been sacrificed.
1 Corinthians 5:7 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Traditionally, during the Passover feast the Jews would eat unleavened bread (which would be something like tortillas or crackers, made without yeast or baking soda) along with the sacrificed lamb. All the bread which had leaven in it (and therefore looked like real bread) would have been eaten or thrown out by this time, for a little leaven from that would affect all the dough being made. Leavening was used multiple times by Christ to reference the sin and hypocrisy of the Pharisees, and in this passage refers to the sin and behavior of a person’s old life before Christ. Paul is here saying that we need to be new dough, made for the Passover to be with Christ the sacrificial Lamb, that has none of the leaven of the old life in it. We need to get rid of our old actions and lifestyles so that we can be made new in Christ. Jesus was sacrificed for us, to pay for our sins, so we need to put off those sins and become new and untainted by them. We need to honor Him and His sacrifice by turning away from our old lives and choosing to live in the new freedom He has given us, freedom from sin, freedom to live in obedience to Him. What kind of dough are you? Are you a new lump ready for Passover, or are you tainted by the leavening of your old life?



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Wednesday, January 1, 2020

Devotions: Fit for Heaven


But Jesus said to him, “No one, after putting his hand to the plow and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.”
Luke 9:62 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

We have to be all in. There is no neutral ground when it comes to faith. We have to be all for Christ or the world. We can’t have both. We will be loyal to one and a traitor to the other. This does not mean that we are never tempted or fall, but that our goal and devotion is given to God. We can’t call ourselves Christians and yet live in and for the world. We have to be sold out for the cause. The idea of starting something and then “looking back” is called being double-minded. It could also be called two-faced. It is asking forgiveness for something we have done, but have no intention of quitting. It is knowing what is wrong and doing it anyway because “God will forgive me anyway, I’m only human.” It is praising God with our mouths on Sunday, and lying or talking bad about others on Monday. We must be all one or the other; either all for Christ and live the way He says, or all for the world and live in the flesh. We can’t have both. We can’t live in the flesh and have heaven, too. How devoted and committed are you? Are you striving to live for Christ, in spite of your mistakes, or are you living how you want, in spite of what the Bible says?


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Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Devotions: New or Old?


that, in reference to your former manner of life, you lay aside the old self, which is being corrupted in accordance with the lusts of deceit, and that you be renewed in the spirit of your mind,
Ephesians 4:22-23 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

We have two options, two lifestyles, two places to reside: the old or the new. Before we met Christ, we were in the old life, the old man, the flesh. We lived according to what our flesh wanted, and while we may have been “good” we could not become better. We were stuck, bound to sin and death. But then Christ came. He freed us from that bondage and gave us new life. He revived our spirits so that we could live life and choose obedience to Him rather than being forced to follow sin. He gave us a new life, a new heart, a Spirit. Unfortunately, when we give our lives to Jesus and believe in Him, the old does not go away permanently. It is subdued but not gone. We have to choose to live in the new life by the Spirit. We have to choose to put off, to lay aside, the flesh which is corruption. How are we to be renewed? Through the Spirit’s renewal of our minds. We must seek the Truth in God’s word, believe it, and apply/obey it. This process will renew our minds, the way we think, what we believe, and gradually how we act. But we must seek it, choosing the new over the old. We will daily be bombarded with the temptation to give in to the old life, the old way of doing and thinking. We must reject it and choose to follow Christ in the new life He has given us. Which side are you on? Are you walking in newness of life and Spirit, or the old way of sin and death? Do you daily choose to follow the flesh or Christ?




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Tuesday, December 24, 2019

Devotions: Reasons for Joy!


For You, O Lord, have made me glad by what You have done,
I will sing for joy at the works of Your hands.
Psalm 92:4 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

What has God done for you? If we stop to think about it, we literally have countless reasons to sing for joy. God has done so much for us, not the least of which is sending His Son to die for our sins, to pay the debt we owed, to ransom us from our bondage to sin. He had every right to let us pay the penalty for what we have done, but He loves us too much to want to be separated from us for eternity. He was willing to pay the price, for us. On top of that, every good thing we have is a gift from Him. We deserve nothing good, and yet we have received so many blessings, all of which are gifts we could never earn. Every breath we breathe is a gift from God. Ask God to show you His blessings. Ask Him to open your eyes and heart to be grateful for what He has done. Let your heart overflow with joy at what He has done!


A video of this devo will be available after Dec 26 at 6am, visit my facebook page at www.facebook.com/evelynbray15
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The Light of Christmas!


In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being. In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it…There was the true Light which, coming into the world, enlightens every man. He was in the world, and the world was made through Him, and the world did not know Him. He came to His own, and those who were His own did not receive Him. But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God. And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.



John 1:1-5, 9-14 NASB



MERRY CHRISTMAS!




A video of this devo will be available after Dec 25 at 6am, visit my facebook page at www.facebook.com/evelynbray15
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Monday, December 23, 2019

Devotions: Christmas - A Restoration of Joy


Therefore you too have grief now; but I will see you again, and your heart will rejoice, and no one will take your joy away from you.
John 16:22 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Grief is not foreign to anyone. We all experience grief in some way at some time. That is part of living in a world filled with sin, but that is not the end of the story. Jesus came to give us joy, joy in His love and salvation. When we give our hearts to Him, we find a reason to rejoice. His Spirit fills us with joy and that is something no one can take away from us. It is something we can lose sight of, however. We can allow ourselves to get caught up in the sorrows of this world and forget about that joy, forget the eternal value of our relationship with Jesus. Yet we can get it back. All we have to do is return our gaze to Him, remind ourselves of the reasons we have to rejoice, focus on Him and His promises rather than on the troubles around us. Allow Christmas to remind you of the reasons you have to rejoice, let it restore joy to your heart.




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The First or Second Christmas


The first Christmas, Jesus’ first coming to earth, was foretold through out the Old Testament for the purpose of ransoming not only Israel but the lost of the world. The Jews longed for Messiah to come and save them from tyranny, all needed to be saved from bondage to sin. Writing this two thousand years after Christ came, we still look forward to His coming again, the second Christmas, when He will finally, permanently save all who believe and eternally deliver us from sin. Even though we have salvation, we still long for Him to come save us.

Thursday, December 19, 2019

Devotions: The Key to Peace


Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:6-7 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

This is the key to peace: replacing worry with praise and thanksgiving, trusting God with what you need. Years ago, I was about to undergo major surgery and I was rather nervous. As a result, they noticed a heart murmur (which was new) and I wasn’t able to have the surgery that day until my heart was checked out. Three weeks later I was back, but I wasn’t nervous at all and everything went fine. The difference? This verse. I had prayed this verse over and over, trusting God that everything would go as He had planned and thanking Him that there wasn’t anything wrong with my heart. I truly did have a peace that was beyond comprehension. It was God’s peace, an almost surreal feeling that really doesn’t make sense to our human minds. It doesn’t mean that we won’t have things to worry about, but that when we do we need to take them to God and leave them in His hands, trusting the He will take care of them. That trust is fully relying on God, leaning on Him, giving everything into His hands, and then following it with praise and thanksgiving, reminding oneself of who He is and what He has done. If the worry comes back repeat as necessary. What are you worrying about this Christmas? Give it to God. Let Him take care of it for you. Praise and thank Him and allow His peace to guard you like a mother’s embrace.


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