Thursday, January 18, 2018

DWELLING IN THE HOUSE OF THE LORD


Psalm 23:6 (NKJV) Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life; and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever.

As we finish today with this amazing Psalm, we read that, “Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life."  Did you get that?  What is following us?  Goodness and mercy!  Not sickness, disease, lack, poverty, stress, or problems.  No!  Only goodness and mercy are following us.

We need to start looking over our shoulders and saying, “Hello goodness!  Hello mercy!  Thanks for following me today!  Thank you that good things are going to come my way today.  Even if I mess up, as I ‘fess up,’ His mercy will follow me.  Not just today, but every day of my entire life!”  You see, God is a good God and the devil is a bad devil.  As you stay close to the Great Shepherd, He will have only good things follow you all the days of your life.

I love the ending here, "and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever."  After we have lived a good life, and enjoyed all the benefits of this beautiful Psalm for His honor and glory, the Good Shepherd will be there to take us home and bring us into His presence.

Can you imagine it?  I have been to some amazing houses, and I have seen some beautiful mansions in this life, but can you just think for a minute what the House of the Lord must look like?  Can you picture the rooms and the landscaping?  Can you picture the decorations and the windows?  This passage says that we will dwell in His house forever!

So death, where is your sting?  Go ahead and live a good and blessed life, and do not fear as you come to the end of your journey on earth, because our Good Shepherd will be right there to greet you and take you home!

Confession: Thank you goodness and mercy, for following me wherever I go.  Thank you Lord, that after I live a blessed life, You will be there to take me to Your house.  Thank you Father, for the Great Shepherd and for His watchful eye over me in this journey of life.

Today's Bible Reading
(Click here to read it online)

Genesis 37 - 38
Matthew 12:22-45
Psalms 16
Proverbs 3:27-32

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

YOU PREPARE A TABLE FOR ME


Psalms 23:5 (NKJV) You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You anoint my head with oil; my cup runs over.

What an amazing verse of scripture!  Let us look at each part.  "You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies."  When the enemy comes and attacks us, our Great Shepherd is there to protect us.  Here it is almost like He is saying, “Do not worry or fret about anything.  Come here, have a seat and enjoy a big meal.  I will take care of it for you.”

Can you picture it?  Here our enemy is, all kinds of mad, and we are sitting and enjoying an amazing meal with friends and with the Great King.  Man, it does not get much better, does it?  And when He prepares the table for us, can you just imagine what is going to be on it?  I can tell you this: It will be the best of the best!

The next part says that He will anoint our heads with oil.  Oil was used in the Bible to anoint kings, and it was also used as medicine.  The Great King has anointed us as kings, under His rulership, to rule and to reign in this life.  When people see us, they see a marked people, because our heads and hair are shining with His oil of anointing upon us.  And even when we are sick, there is healing in the Name of Jesus.

And now, look at the way He ends this verse, “my cup runs over."  It is not just a little to drink, but a full and overflowing cup.  This is a cup that never runs dry; a cup that is more than enough.  Have you ever done that, when you are so thirsty, and you start drinking and you drink to the point you cannot drink anymore?  That is our Great Shepherd!  He not only gives us a drink, but He gives us so much that it overflows!

Confession:  Thank you Father, that all three parts of this verse are for me.  Thank you for a table set before me in the presence of my enemies, an anointed head that shines with your glory, and a cup that never runs dry.  It is full to the brim, and overflowing in my life!

Today's Bible Reading
(Click here to read it online)

Genesis 35 - 36
Matthew 12:1-21
Psalms 15
Proverbs 3:21-26


Tuesday, January 16, 2018

WHEN I AM IN THE VALLEY


Psalms 23:4 (NKJV) Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.

We have seen in all of these verses that the Shepherd leads, guides, helps, and loves us.  In this verse, it changes from the Shepherd’s actions and love for us, to our own actions.  You see, in life there are going to be times when we do not listen, so we get ourselves in places we should not be.  Here it is called "the valley of the shadow of death."

Have you ever had times like that?  You find that the grass is not green and the stream is dirty and you say, “How did I get here?”  Then you see that through the decisions you made, or by not taking time to listen to the Shepherd's voice, you opened doors that should have stayed shut.

Even in these times when we mess up, the Great Shepherd does not leave us!  He promised in Hebrews 13:5 that He would “…never leave you nor forsake you.”  Never means never!  This passage says, “I will fear no evil; for You are with me!”  What a promise!  When we mess up, we need to “fess up” and He, the Great Shepherd, will forgive and restore.

Even when we open doors to the evil one, our Shepherd takes out His mighty rod, He grabs hold of us with His wonderful staff, and He brings great comfort to our lives.  What security!  What comfort!  What hope we have because of our amazing Jesus!

So take heart today!  There is no sin too strong that the blood of Jesus cannot wash it away.  Rest in His loving arms, and hear His heartbeat as you lay your head upon His chest.  Know that He loves you, and He will always protect you from anything that the enemy might bring against you.  He will even protect you when you open a door that you should not have opened.

Confession: Father, I thank You for the blood of Jesus that has washed me as white as snow.  I thank You that no matter what comes against me, and even when I am walking in the valley, You are there to comfort and to restore.  What a God I serve!


Today's Bible Reading
(Click here to read it online)


Genesis 32:13 - Genesis 34
Matthew 11:7-30
Psalms 14
Proverbs 3:19-20

Monday, January 15, 2018

HE LEADS AND GUIDES US


Psalms 23:2-3 (NKJV) He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters. 3 He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness for His name's sake.

As we look at verses 2 and 3 today, we see the Great Provider again.  He leads us not to a field full of weeds, but to a lush green pasture.  Not to turbulent waters, but to still waters.  Our Shepherd makes sure that we get the very best.  Picture the scene: a beautiful green meadow and a beautiful stream of crystal clear water.  Picture yourself and Jesus walking there and enjoying the fruit trees, the sunshine, and the blue sky.

Picture the peace; not a single care, and all of our needs met.  This is the picture that our Heavenly Father wants us to see, because this is what He has done for us.  Jesus said in John 16:33 in the Amplified Bible, “In the world you have tribulation and trials and distress and frustration; but be of good cheer [take courage; be confident, certain, undaunted]! For I have overcome the world. [I have deprived it of power to harm you and have conquered it for you.]”

He restores our soul.   Oh thank you, Great Shepherd, that we do not have to think like this world does.  We are free to live at a much higher level.  Our minds and souls are renewed by the Word of God.  We think like God, because we have His Word. 

Our Great Shepherd leads us in the path of righteousness for His Name sake.  He does not kick us or drag us.  No!  He leads us and guides us throughout our lives.  He helps us when we are tired.  He guides us when the path is dark and we do not know where to turn.  He does all of this for His Name’s sake.

I want my children to be blessed, and I want my wife to have nice things.  When they are blessed, it is a representation of me.  It is the same with our Jesus.  He wants us to look good and to be of a peaceful mind, because it shows His blessings in our lives.  Rejoice today, because we have a Great Shepherd!

Confession: My Shepherd leads me to good things, and guides me in my course of life.  He gives me His peace and blessings each and every day of my life.  He is for me and not against me.

Today's Bible Reading
(Click here to read it online)


Genesis 31:17- 32:12
Matthew 10:24 - 11:6
Psalms 13
Proverbs 3:16-18


Sunday, January 14, 2018

THE LORD IS MY SHEPHERD


Psalms 23:1 (NKJV) The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.

For the next week, I want us to look at Psalm 23.  This Psalm has been spoken at many funerals and events.  It is what we would call a “Classic Psalm.”  Many people that are saved, and many that are not saved, know this Psalm.  But the question is, do we know it in our hearts?

Let us begin with verse 1.  “The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.”  Think about that.  Our great King and Lord is a shepherd to us.  A shepherd takes care of His sheep.  One thing that I know about Jesus is that He takes care of us.  He leads us and guides us in our course of life.

Jesus tells us in John 10:11, “The Good Shepherd gives His life for the sheep.”  He said that the Good Shepherd goes out, no matter what the condition is, and looks for the one sheep that is lost.  He said that He will lead us, guide us, and provide for us in our lives.

Think of all the food that our shepherd has made for us, and the variety.  He could have given us bread and water and said that is enough, but not our Jesus.  He made so much that it is just amazing!  Have you ever watched the food network and been blown away with all the different foods of our world?

He could have made the earth like mars: barren and empty.  Again, Jesus did not do that.  He made a world so full of life and treasures that it amazes the mind!  Have you ever watched “Planet Earth,” and sat there with your mouth open at the beauty and wonder of all of His creation?

I could go on and on, but today, let us remember that the Lord is our shepherd.  We shall not want, because He takes such good care of all of our needs.  He is the God of the overflow, the God of wonder and might, and, most of all, He is our GOOD SHEPHERD!

Confession: The Lord Jesus is my Good Shepherd.  He always looks out for every need that I have, and meets those needs for me.  My Good Shepherd loves me, and always has my best in mind.

Today's Bible Reading
(Click here to read it online)


Genesis 30 - 31:1-16
Matthew 10:1-23
Psalms 12
Proverbs 3:13-15


Saturday, January 13, 2018

TRUE PROSPERITY


3 John 2 (NKJV) Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers.

God wants us to prosper!  Many people get all bent out of shape because they think that prospering can bring problems into people’s lives.  But here we see the Apostle John praying that his beloved would prosper in all things and be in health, even as their soul prospers.

The key to keeping prosperity in line is to make sure that your soul (your mind) prospers first.  When your mind is renewed by the Word of God and you want to please your Heavenly Father in all things, you will always put God’s Kingdom first when He blesses you.

There is nothing wrong with having money.  The problem comes when money has you.  Too many people have let the almighty dollar take control of their life, and it has ruined them.  This is what is so wonderful about the tithe.  When we give God our first fruits, the first 10%, and learn to live on the remaining 90%, it teaches us to keep God as #1 in every part of our lives.

God wants us to prosper in all things, and God wants us to be healthy.  But again, why do we want to be healthy?  Is it so that we can live a sinful life without having any pain?  It should be so that we can serve the Lord with all of our heart, with all of our soul, and with all of our strength.

So today, go ahead and receive the blessing from this verse, but make sure that money, and other things, do not become a god in your life.  Let us make sure that Jesus is always #1, and that He receives the first fruits from our lives.  If we do this, life is going to be awesome!

Confession: I see through this word today what true prosperity is.  It is always giving God what belongs to Him.  I choose to do it God's way, and I know that as I do this, I will be blessed in all I do.


Today's Bible Reading
(Click here to read it online)

Genesis 28 - 29
Matthew 9:18-38
Psalms 11
Proverbs 3:11-12

Friday, January 12, 2018

ASK ACCORDING TO HIS WILL


James 4:2-3 (NKJV) You lust and do not have. You murder and covet and cannot obtain. You fight and war. Yet you do not have because you do not ask. 3 You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures.

I want us to look at the second part of verse 2 today.  It says “you do not have because you do not ask.”  God has set a plan in place that works through asking.  Asking is what we call praying.  When we come to God, our Heavenly Father, and ask Him for something that lines up with His will, we can have the assurance within us that He will answer our prayer.

God is not withholding from us, but God is much wiser than us.  He knows that if we get outside His will for our lives, it will cause major problems.  I have found that the best type of praying is to make sure that the request lines up with His Word, which is His will.

Too many times, we do what verse 3 admonishes us not to do, and that is to ask with wrong intent.  We want to be blessed and have everything easy.  Unfortunately, that is not how this all works.  Some things in life do not come easy, but God loves us and wants the best for us.  I think of good parents.  They do not give their children everything that they want.  They give them what they know is best for them.

It is the same with God.  He has given us His Word and said, “Ok, this is what is best for you.  Look in this Book and anything that I have said you can have, is yours.”  Does that sound simple?  Well, it is!  Jesus said in Matthew 17:20, “If you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you.”  But He also said unless we become like children, we will not see the Kingdom of God. 

So today, find out what God's will is for the prayer you want to pray.  When you do, ask!   

Confession: I am making a quality decision in my life to find out what God's Word says about the things that I am asking for.  When I find that out, I know that I will have the petitions that I desire of Him.


Today's Bible Reading
(Click here to read it online)

Genesis 26:17 - 27:46
Matthew 9:1-17
Psalms 10:16-18
Proverbs 3:9-10