Daily Devotions

Tuesday 18th Jan 2022


Once, on a long car journey I travelled on a stretch of main road where there were no lines to mark either the centre of the road or the edge of the road – nothing at all except a huge expanse of black tarmac. Strangely disconcerted, I found myself slowing down to a much slower speed than I would normally drive at on such a road.

My senses heightened, I felt myself tensing up as I navigated my way along the seemingly endless black road, constantly searching for something that would indicate the edge of the road and always aware of how much space I was leaving for cars coming the other way. It soon became clear that this part of the journey would be slower, more stressful, and would require a lot more effort. There was also a very real sense of insecurity about my position on the road and my safety as other drivers I encountered were obviously also struggling with their journeys. I have to admit it surprised me how much I’d relied on those white lines that we’re so used to on the roads!

My situation reminded me of this Scripture in Psalm 119. God’s Word should be a constant guide in our lives, showing us the boundaries that we can safely live within and giving us direction so that we move forward effectively. God’s Word doesn’t need to be at the forefront of our minds all the time; just as white lines are not at all at the forefront of my mind whilst I am driving. In fact, God’s Word should be at the very heart of our being so that we don’t have to think about it all the time. As the Psalmist says in verse 11, ‘I have hidden your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you’.

As we travel along life’s journey, God’s Word should be that constant guide that never falters or wavers. There we can find rest, freedom and safety. Without such a guide we find ourselves frantically searching for something that would indicate a boundary or direction for us to move forward in safely.

In essence God’s Word should be like those white lines on a road. It should just be there all the time!


Thank You, Father, for Your Word. May it be a constant guide to me that’s at the very heart of my life so I can move forward in life in peace and freedom. Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Wednesday 24th November 2021

How Do Feed Five Thousand?

A great crowd of people has followed Jesus because they have seen the miraculous signs He has performed on the sick. And here they are, thousands of them, all needing to be fed. Jesus already knows what He is planning to do. But He asks Philip, “Where shall we buy bread for these people to eat?” (John 6:5).

Philip is thinking about the impossible cost this will entail: “Eight months’ wages won’t be enough. Can’t do it. That project’s dead in the water. No money. Outside the budget. Forget it.”

Andrew says, “Here is a boy with five loaves and two fish”. Andrew is alert to what might be a possibility. It is a slim chance.

I love the way Andrew notices the boy and wonders whether Jesus can do anything with what the boy has. And the boy is happy to donate his lunch to Jesus.

Then Jesus does the miracle no-one had imagined. Every last person is fed. And when the crowd have had their fill, Jesus instructs that all left-over food must be gathered up and nothing be wasted.

I think those leftovers were taken to the elderly and destitute, to the beggars in the town, those whom they knew who had nothing. This was a day of blessings and bounty for all!

The special thing about Andrew is that, although he had never seen Jesus perform a miracle of multiplying bread, he had seen Jesus healing the sick, calming the storm, and making water into wine. Andrew had faith. He knew Jesus had the authority of God. While Philip, at this point in his experience of Jesus, couldn’t imagine what Jesus might, or could, do to feed five thousand people. So, he thought it was hopeless.

Isn’t it amazing that, when we trust God, we see Him doing things we cannot imagine? We don’t have to know how He’ll do it, but we come knowing that He is able. It is like Andrew bringing the boy with the five loaves and two fish to Jesus – and Jesus responding by doing His amazing miracle of multiplication beyond what anyone had ever seen or could ever have imagined as possible.

Prayer: Father, thank You for who You are. Thank You that You answer our prayers in ways that are often outside the box. When I trust You as God, and trust You for who you are, I don’t have to work out how You will answer my prayers. And thank You that You are a God of miracles, and You have all authority. Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Friday 19th November 2021

I Stand at the Door and Knock

Sometimes we can get so caught up in the world, with possessions, money, and our careers, that we can miss hearing God’s voice. We can lose interest in Church, reading our Bibles and spending time with Him. Therefore, we can shut the door to Jesus and to hearing His voice. I know I don’t want to shut God out of my life. Do you?

So, what can we do? Well, we can open the door to our hearts. If we do that, we don’t need to worry about not hearing Him knock. When we do that, we have hope of lasting fulfilment and don’t need the things of the world.

Now I’m not saying we don’t need jobs, money and possessions, but what I’m saying is we don’t need them to try and fill the hole in our lives, and we don’t need them for satisfaction and fulfilment.

Jesus is knocking on the door of my heart, and your heart, so what should we do when we sense Him knocking? Well, I don’t know about you, but I want to let Him in and to have fellowship with Him. Jesus wants to have fellowship with us. Just take a moment to think about that. The King of kings wants to have fellowship with us!

Jesus won’t gate-crash. He won’t force His way in. He is very patient, but persistent, and He really wants us to open up to Him. Jesus is knocking.

It really is down to us whether we open up our lives to Him and let Him in to do what needs to be done. It really is for our best. Do we want a life changing experience with Him, or are we, am I, going to intentionally keep the door shut and keep Him out?

My thought for today is this. Is the door of my heart open to Jesus, or am I keeping it closed? Do I want to have fellowship with Him or to hang on to the things of the world? Do I want freedom in my life, or do I want to hang on to hurt, pain, bitterness, and possessions?

“Here I stand at the door knocking”.

Prayer: Father God, I open the door of my heart to You. I hear You knocking. Please come in today. Thank You. Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Thursday 18th November 2021

Facing Giants

Sometimes in life we can find ourselves in situations when we feel completely overwhelmed. Sometimes, whatever the practical reality of the situation, the size of the problems facing us can just seem insurmountable.

In 1 Samuel 17 we read of a time when the forces of the Philistines were arrayed before the Israelite army under King Saul. Every day, a Philistine champion named Goliath came out to taunt the Israelites by offering a one-on-one combat on a ‘winner takes all’ basis. The thing about Goliath, though, was that he was no ordinary champion. We read in verse 4 that he was nine feet tall!

When Saul became King over Israel, he certainly looked the part. We read in 1 Samuel 9:2 that he was an impressive young man without equal among the Israelites. He was a head taller than any of the others. But even he was dwarfed by Goliath. So, when he heard Goliath’s challenge, we read that Saul, along with all the Israelites, was understandably dismayed and terrified (17:11). What could Saul do in the face of such enormous, such overwhelming, circumstances?

Then, along came David. Whenever we allow the size of the problem we face to be the determining factor, it’s so easy to lose heart. But this is a fascinating story of the small overcoming the enormous. David trusted in God and was willing to step out in faith. Even when his older brother tried to put him in his place, and even when King Saul’s armour swamped him and fell off him, David was undeterred. Instead of focusing on the size of the problem, he looked, simply and courageously, to the greatness of his God.

Armed with the shepherd’s weapons that he had used to protect his father’s flock, David went out to take on Goliath with these words, “You come against me with sword and spear and javelin, but I come against you in the name of the LORD Almighty, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied.” I imagine he’d have looked small and insignificant, standing there in the face of that giant. But the rest, as they say, is history…

It may feel to many of us that the forces arrayed against us are just too huge. One example of this that’s on my heart right now is for those of us who are holding firmly to the truths of the Bible, rather than being overwhelmed and swept away by the powerful currents of our world’s values and demands. Frankly, such forces are indeed huge. But, like David facing Goliath, we would do well to focus less on the size of our own particular ‘giants’, and more on the enormity of the God we serve. Because the truth is that ‘our’ victory is actually His victory through us. And His battles are fought ‘not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, says the LORD Almighty’.

Prayer: Dear Father, even when we face giants in our lives, especially those that challenge our faith in You, help us to focus our attention away from the size of the problem but more towards the hugeness of who You are. Help us, Lord, like David, to put our trust in You. Oh Lord, give us the courage and humility to surrender to You and Your ways alone. Please come swiftly to our rescue and be victorious in and through us. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Friday 12th November 2021

in The Right Light

One of the regular jobs I have in our home is to clean the windows inside and out. As we live in a bungalow this is a fairly easy task. It doesn’t require the use of steps or a ladder. I always try to make as good a job of them as possible and not leave any smears, streaks, or blemishes on the glass. When I finished this job a few days ago and inspected what I had done, I was satisfied with my achievements as all the windows appeared clean and free of dust and dirt and seemed to sparkle. A job well done, I thought.

On the following day when I had an opportunity to sit down and enjoy the sunlight coming through the window, I was disappointed to discover that what I had thought to be a clean, clear pane of glass the day before did, in fact, still have marks and smears. The sunlight highlighted the imperfections of my efforts.

This has caused me to think how we can be like that. We can so easily deceive ourselves and others into believing that we are doing well, and living and behaving as we should, doing and saying all the right things. Proverbs 21:2 reminds us of this when it says, ‘People may be right in their own eyes but the Lord examines their heart.’

When the light of God’s word of truth and love is allowed to shine into our heart, it reveals things which otherwise would remain unnoticed and may have done so for a long time. Things such as wrong thoughts and desires, pride, jealousy and bitterness can be revealed when we allow God, by His Spirit, to highlight them, and when we begin to look at them from His perspective, in line with His word.

Inconsistencies and lack of integrity, not noticed, or perhaps overlooked, by others, are made visible when the Holy Spirit is allowed to scrutinise our hearts and point out the blemishes and smears which need to be dealt with. Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross provided the means by which forgiveness and removal of these ‘blemishes’ is available. We are then to appropriate that for ourselves personally. This is the sanctifying process which the Lord is wanting to do in each one of us, changing us into His likeness.

The words from Psalm 139:23-24 would be a good way to pray each day, ‘Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. Point out anything in me that offends you, and lead me along the path of everlasting life,’ or these words from Graham Kendrick’s song, ‘Shine Jesus Shine’. ‘Lord I come to Your awesome presence, from the shadows into Your radiance; by Your blood I may enter Your brightness: search me, try me, consume all my darkness – shine on me.’

Prayer: Dear Lord, please help me to allow the light of Your love to highlight the irregularities in my heart, so that I can offer them to You for forgiveness and cleansing. Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Thursday 11th November 2021

Don’t Trust the Manna, but the Lord of the Manna

Many of us are familiar with the story of manna and the Israelites, and how God instructed them to have just enough for a day. But, of course, they collected extra manna, which is the sensible thing to do, according to human understanding. However, it was not the sensible thing to do when God had asked them not to do that, but to trust Him. He doesn’t want our relationship with Him to be based on common sense or rationality, but purely on trust. (Life is much easier and smoother when relationships are built on trust.)

Where trust doesn’t exist, fear controls. Their fear for tomorrow led to having extra manna, but little did they know that manna would be available for them for the next forty years until they settled in the promised land.

The problem is not the manna, but when we trust the manna above the word of the One who provides the manna. The problem is when we sleep in peace at night because we have extra ‘manna’ for the next day, instead of our peace being founded in the One who provides the manna. It’s okay to collect ‘manna’ as the Lord instructs, but we need to do it in accordance with His guidance and instructions and not be influenced by the environment and circumstances that surround us.

There is no problem having plans for tomorrow, but the problem comes when we put our trust in those plans. We say, “I’ve got all figured out”, but our God is so loving and caring that He sometimes teaches us how to trust Him by stripping away everything that we have put our trust in. Then we are left with no options but Him.

Manna was to test the children of Israel with how much they trusted the Lord, and the same is true for us today. Is there an area of our lives where we’ve collected extra ‘manna’ and we feel at ‘peace’ because of the mechanisms we’ve put in place for our tomorrow? I would encourage you to surrender those areas to the Lord.

Apart from manna testing our trust, it also tests our obedience. If we trust God, then we will obey Him when He tells us to collect enough for today and not worry about tomorrow. We will trust that His Word is far more important than the ‘manna’ itself.

Instead of using all our efforts and energy only to realise that yesterday’s manna is irrelevant for today, we need to trust God for fresh manna each new day. It’s easier and life-giving to trust Him. Those who collected extra manna ended up working harder than everyone else for two days. They collected extra manna but then had to clean it up when it rotted away. It’s okay to have ‘manna’ as He directs us. But let’s not put our trust in the ‘manna’, but in the One who provides it.

Prayer: Help me, Lord, to put my trust in You, with my daily decisions, today, tomorrow, my future, and my life. Thank You that You never disappoint. You never break hearts, never fail, nor lie, for You’re not like a man. You’re consistent in Your character. Sorry for the times I have doubted You and collected more ‘manna’ than required. I choose to put my trust in You, in Jesus’ name, Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Wednesday 10th November 2021

Hold On Tight

These verses describe that safe place we all long for. They speak of strength and stability. They speak of protection and safety. They speak of an amazing haven of rest, peace and hope. How, as God’s children, do we get to this place?

As in a lot of David’s psalms, he pours out his heart to God in prayer. He often relates his fears and anguish, and sometimes, as in Psalm 13, cries out ‘How long must I wait?’ However, time and time again, and this scripture in Psalm 62 is no different, David holds fast to the truths of who God is and reminds himself, and the reader, of the character of God.

I remember the very first teaching I heard at my church. It was on Hebrews Chapter 3 and in particular verses 13 to 14; ‘But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called today so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness. We have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original conviction firmly to the very end’. The teaching focussed on how much we need our brothers and sisters in Christ, if we are to hold fast to Jesus.

The illustration given was one that I have often thought about and will never forget. The speaker told how he was on a large inflatable ring which was being pulled by a speed boat on a lake. The inflatable ring had handles around the outside, and a group of friends were in the water, each holding on to two handles.

As the speed boat pulled them around the lake they needed to keep hold of the inflatable. But the speed boat would twist in all directions to try and get them to let go. They held on with all their might and encouraged one another by shouting, “Hold on tight!” As the teacher was telling this story, he was literally shouting across the church, “Hold on tight. Hold on tight”, as he held his Bible at arm’s length.

We may never have had to do this particular challenge, but when life throws us around, we can picture ourselves holding tight to the handles of an inflatable and being determined to not let go. We can remind ourselves of God’s character, as David did, and encourage one another to not let go.

Let us be clear what it is we are holding on to. Whilst the speedboat represents our everyday lives, the inflatable is, of course, Jesus, and the handles are His truths. In David’s words, we are holding on to God the mighty rock. We are holding on to God the fortress. We are holding on to God the hope of our salvation and we can find real shelter in that place.

As David says, let us not be shaken. Let us pour out our hearts to God today. Let us remember how big and strong our God is. Let us seek that amazing haven that David describes. All the while, as long as it is called today, let us encourage one another with these truths and not let go.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, today I come to You as I seek that rock and refuge in my life. I seek that safe place, the fortress of my loving Father. Help me to trust You with all my heart, even when I do not understand. When life throws me around, I do not want to let go of You. Show me how to hold on tight to Your truths and to Jesus. Help me to remember who You are. Help me to encourage others to hold fast to these truths. Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Tuesday 9th November 2021

Open Arms

When our little granddaughter, Hannah, was ten months old, I watched her one morning playing on the carpet, with her daddy keeping an eye on her. She is generally a very joyful little girl and loves exploring the world around her, but, after some time, she started getting tired, and began crying. Her daddy encouraged her to crawl towards him. He was not more two meters from her and completely within her reach. However, Hannah kept moaning and would not budge.

Her daddy eventually slipped off his chair on to the carpet, and while opening his arms wide, again invited Hannah to come to him, but Hannah stayed put. She was tired, and wanted comfort, but was unwilling to crawl into her daddy’s arms.

This little incident reminded me of how we, as God’s children, sometimes lose sight of the fact that we have a Heavenly Father whose arms are always open wide when we are in need of comfort and rest. Just like Hannah’s daddy who stooped down and opened his arms, God extends this invitation to us: “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy-laden and overburdened, and I will cause you to rest. [I will ease and relieve and refresh your souls.]” (Matthew 11:28).

As born-again believers we understand that we need to be courageous, stand strong in all things, endure hardship as good soldiers of Jesus Christ, and keep moving forward, despite the trials we face. Of course, this is absolutely true and biblical, but do we have as good an understanding of the comfort of God and the rest there is available in Him? Or do we, like little Hannah, remain stuck in that place of overwhelm, in spite of the open arms of our Heavenly Father?

When we come to the end of our own resources and ability to ‘fix’ our own difficulties and weaknesses – the things that cause us to be ‘heavy-laden and overburdened’, we have a Saviour who has resources beyond our imagination and the ability to ease and relieve and refresh our souls. ‘As a father loves and pities his children, so the Lord loves and pities those who fear Him [with reverence, worship, and awe]’ (Psalm 103:13). He really is a good Father, who has compassion on His children, and His arms are always open.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank You that You are a good Father who cares for Your children. Forgive me for the times I have refused Your comfort and have tried to labour through things in my own strength. Today I choose to lay it all down and find my rest in You. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Thursday 4th November 2021

God Of Surprises

For the disciples this was a ‘suddenly’ moment. They had heard Him teach the crowds with great authority and seen Him heal many sick people – but this was different! Suddenly there was a storm, and when they awoke Him – suddenly He did the unthinkable! The realisation that Jesus was no ordinary man, and that He was actually sitting in the boat with them, must have dawned on them when they saw Him address nature, arresting the wind and the waves. What an awe-inspiring moment!

‘Who is this man? Even the wind and the waves obey him!’ they questioned. Could this have been the moment when, for some of them, the truth of His divinity began to dawn on them?

Out on the ocean waves everything around them was beyond their control and nothing their years of experience on the sea had taught them was working. But the fact that He was in the boat and therefore accessible in their hour of need must have been a great comfort. And there was a great calm where once there was despair!

In the sometimes turbulent waters of life how wonderful it is to know the abiding presence of the Lord Jesus Christ in our boat. He has a way of surprising us beyond our expectations, and of revealing a facet of His character hitherto unknown to us, at any given point in our experience. For the disciples this would be the day when they would see Him deal with nature.

Whilst helping us to navigate through the challenges of life He can still the most furious of squalls. He scolded the disciples for their lack of faith, but did not allow their shortcomings to stop Him from revealing His Lordship to them.

Once we have glimpsed His greatness what a reassurance and a comfort there is in knowing we belong to Him and that He loves and cares for us.

Prayer: Dear Lord Jesus, thank You for being in the boat of our lives and experiences whilst revealing Your majesty to us personally, particularly in times of need. Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Tuesday 12th October 2021

Psalms 139 in My Own Words

Lord, You have examined my heart and know everything there is to know about me. My thoughts are not hidden from You. You see my every movement and are familiar with all my habits. Even before I open my mouth to speak You know what I am going to say.

You go ahead of me, and You follow me. You are constantly with me and long to bless me. I can’t even begin to understand the love You have for me. Where could I hide from You? Where could I go to avoid the searching eyes of Your Spirit? If I travelled to the furthermost reaches of space, You would be there. If I sank to the depths of the ocean, You would be there. If I rose like the sun in the morning and travel beyond the horizon, I would know Your hand was upon me. My confidence in Your presence would keep me safe. If I hid in the darkness, You would see me, because darkness cannot be dark to You. It would be like daylight in Your sight.

I know You created the innermost parts of my being, as I was formed in my mother’s womb. You put me together meticulously and lovingly. I am a wonder of Your creation. You saw me before I was born and knew what I was destined to be, and every day of my life was written in Your book before even one of them dawned.

I try to imagine what You are like, but my thoughts cannot understand Your ways and purposes. To me these thoughts are precious for I know You control all things. Your mind is as incomprehensible as the millions of stars in the heavens, outnumbering even all the grains of sand on the seashore. Then I realise that I am with You as You are with me, and I can know a constant, intimate, and loving relationship with You.

There is so much evil creeping into this beautiful world You have created. How I wish Your presence would be known to all, especially those who despise You and fight against Your purposes. I continually wonder at Your love for those who hate You.

Lord, I ask You to shine Your light deep down into the depths of my heart. See if there are any thoughts or ways in my life that are displeasing to You. Let the presence of Your holiness cause them to disappear like snow on a summer’s morning and lead me on to everlasting life.

Prayer: My Lord and my God, who is there but You in the heavens? Who is there but You when I have no one to run to? Who is there but You when I am lost and cannot see my way forward? Forgive me, Lord, that I have doubted Your love for me and looked away when You come close. Take me, Lord, as I am, and transform me into Your likeness, day by day, in Jesus’ name. Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Monday 11th October 2021

Walking With the Word

In a world, not too spiritually different to ours, described as `dark and full of crooked and perverse people`, the Apostle Paul encourages his readers to let their lives shine brightly, encouraging them to hold tightly to the word of life.

How tightly are you holding to the word of life? In these days we need to be people of the Word – people who have an understanding of the Scriptures and their relevance to life in the 21st century. Perhaps you need to spend more time ‘in the Word’, feeding and nourishing your spirit.

To shine as lights in the darkness we need to apply the truths that we read and learn about in the Bible in our own lives. When these seeds of truth are allowed to grow and develop fruit they will bless others and bring glory to the Father.

We may fill our heads with all the great stories, events, truths and doctrines which the Scriptures contain, but unless these things affect the way we live and bring change to our lives, we’re wasting our time.

Few people bury their heads in an instruction manual but never attempt to use the device or piece of equipment they’re reading about. The user becomes much more familiar with the device as he uses it and it becomes part of his life, day by day.

Isn’t that as it should be with us and the Lord? Yes we require understanding, but a deeper fuller appreciation of Him only comes about through daily relationship with him
The disciples had the advantage of walking daily with Jesus, listening to His teaching first hand and witnessing the miracles. The truths of His teaching were applied in the circumstances of life around them.

We need a deeper understanding of the Word of God, as, by His Spirit, we walk daily with Jesus, ‘the Word that was made flesh for us’. Not only is a thorough knowledge of the Scriptures necessary, but also hands-on experience of the outworking of its truths.
These thoughts are reflected in two verses of the hymn by C Simmonds:-

I want to walk with Jesus Christ,
All the days I live of this life on earth;
To give to Him complete control
Of body and of soul.

I want to learn to read His word,
For this is how I know the way
To live my life as pleases Him,
In holiness and joy.

When we live like this the words of another hymn become a reality: ‘When we walk with Lord in the light of his word what a glory he sheds on our way’ (J.H.Sammis).

Prayer: Help me, dear Lord, to spend more time with You and Your Word, and daily walk with You, so I may become more like You. Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Friday 8th October 2021

Foreign Gods

The Old Testament has many accounts of the Israelites and their history of turning to the Lord and then again choosing to worship idols instead. In Judges 10:1-16 the Israelites once again turned from the Lord: ‘Again the Israelites did evil in the Lord’s sight. They served the images of Baal and Ashtoreth, and the gods of Aram, Sidon, Moab, Ammon, and Philistia. They abandoned the Lord and no longer served Him at all’ (Judges 10:6).

The result of their idol worship, led to them being oppressed by the Philistines and Ammonites for eighteen long years. They were in great distress and finally called out to the Lord for help, confessing their sin of turning away from Him (Judges 10:10). The Lord’s initial reaction was to remind them that He had previously also rescued them and that, this time, they could cry out to their gods they had chosen to rescue them.

But the Israelites pleaded with the Lord again and confessed their sin. And that brings us to today’s scripture where the Lord once again showed His compassion when His people turned to Him with sincere hearts. We might easily read this chapter in The Bible and think to ourselves: “Not again! Don’t they ever learn!”

When I read today’s scripture where the Israelites put aside their foreign gods, I realised that they must’ve known exactly what and who they had been serving. They knew which gods to put aside when they were in distress. They knew, deep down, whom they really needed to wholeheartedly serve: God alone.

How often do we act in the same way by also entertaining false gods in our lives? They could be the things that distract us, steal our time with the Lord, thoughts that accommodate the enemy’s lies or sinful attitudes, habits, and addictions that we choose to ignore and that do not bring honour to the Lord. We may compromise and rationalise, even though we know something is not quite God’s will and way.

We eventually think it doesn’t really matter, until we experience deep distress and realise that we desperately need the Lord. When we get to this point, we willingly give up and confess anything that could separate us from the Lord. Hard times make us shine a spotlight on to our own lives, confessing to the Lord where we knowingly made wrong turns and choices.

Our devotion to the Lord shouldn’t be dependent on the circumstances we are in. Even though there are times when we definitely need His guidance and comfort more than other times, our devotion to the Lord should not be in question. Those foreign gods in our lives need to be set aside for us to grow closer to His heart of love.

If maybe you are battling with a divided heart, ask the Lord to help you. Maybe your trust has been broken, or maybe your heart has grown cold. No matter what your circumstances may be, His heart of compassion will meet you where you are at. Turn to Him, confess where you have turned from Him and allow Him to guide you and heal you. As you journey with the Lord, you will learn to know Him more and experience His love for you. From a heart of love, devotion flows.

Prayer: Lord Jesus, please shine Your light on areas in my life where I have not been trusting and honouring You. Please forgive me for harbouring ungodly attitudes and habits. Bring me closer to You, Lord, and help me to know You as my Father and closest friend. Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Thursday 7th October 2021

There’s Always More

We usually end letters with a greeting – ‘Kind regards’, All the best’, ‘Lots of love’. In New Testament times you put the greeting first. That’s nice, isn’t it? At least, if it’s a nice personal greeting!

It occurred to me that when God wants to say something to us, He so often starts with a greeting. You can regard the New Testament letters as God’s word to us – they are! And they always start with what God wants to say to us before anything else – things like: ‘Grace and peace be multiplied to you!’

Grace: that’s everything that He wants us to have. And it never runs out. John says: ‘Out of his fullness we have all received grace in place of grace already given’ (John 1:16). Have you ever watched the waves coming into a beach on a windy day? No sooner has one broken than another’s already rearing. And another, and another … When the wind is blowing there’s a never-ending run of breakers. And when we are living in the wind of the Spirit, there’s always grace after grace.

And peace. It follows grace because grace produces peace. Peace isn’t just feeling comfortable. It’s stability, abundance, security, fulfilment. It is, as Paul says, something beyond human understanding, dependant, not on our circumstances, but on His grace.

God wants this grace and peace to be ‘multiplied’. Not just added. This is what we call exponential growth. Start with one, then two, then four, then sixteen, thirty-two, sixty-four … God’s grace and peace are never exhausted – so long as we are in the right place to receive them.

Where’s that? It’s ‘in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord’. ‘In’ suggests a place – ‘in London’. Knowing God isn’t knowing about Him, it’s a personal relationship. And to truly know somebody you have to be with them – in the same place. That’s why Paul so often describes Christians as people who are ‘in Christ’.

It’s as though Peter starts his letter with a question (and it’s God’s question): Are you in Christ? If so, grace and peace will be multiplied to you. That’s how he topped his letter. He tails it in the same way: ‘Grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ’. As you get to know Him better (grow in knowing Him – have a look at Ephesians 1:17), His grace and peace get multiplied in our lives.

Prayer: Thank You, Father, for the overflowing abundance of Your grace and peace. Lord, please keep me close to You today, that I might know You better and receive Your grace and peace in all their fullness. Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Wednesday 6th October 2021

Don’t Let Your Past Hold You Back

The theme of the church service was, “Lament, Forgiveness and Renewal.” We had all experienced loss and sadness during the pandemic – some much more than others – and as we came together as a congregation we were led to a place of honesty where we brought our troubled emotions, sadness and sorrows to Jesus. We asked for forgiveness from Him for ourselves, made the choice to forgive others and asked for the renewing power of the Holy Spirit.

During this time a young man at the side of the preacher was painting a picture. As he began to paint, he had no idea what the result would be. Guided by the Holy Spirit, the finished picture was of a person in chains in a prison cell. A ray of bright light was shining into the cell, showing the trapped person in the arms of another. The strong chain that had bound him was broken. He was free and yet he remained in the prison cell. The painting now hangs on a wall in the church. It is a reminder that, even if we choose to stay in the prison, Jesus Himself has paid the price for our freedom. So, what from our past can hold us back?

The truth is that, when Jesus shed His blood on the cross, He purchased forgiveness and freedom for all who trust in Him. We become dearly loved children of a Father who desires to have an intimate relationship with us, enabling us to live in the joy of the perfect freedom for which Jesus paid the price on the cross. Jesus Himself proclaimed freedom for the prisoners and for the oppressed (Luke 4:18).

Jesus also said, “If the son sets you free, you will be free indeed” (John 8:36). He was speaking of freedom from slavery to sin. We are trapped by our past when we have issues from the past that have not been brought into the light through fear, denial, shame or unreality. We can try to bury the past but it is buried alive! This can close our eyes and heart to the truth that by His death Jesus has broken the chains that bound us.

We are told that “It is for freedom that Christ has died to set us free.” We are also clearly commanded to “Stand firm then and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery” (Galatians 5:1). The first century Christians to whom the words were originally written had come to faith in Jesus but were still trying to obey the law. This was adding something extra to the perfect freedom Jesus had accomplished for them on the cross –with a view to earning God’s favour.

For us it may come down to being constantly busy doing good works, striving to read the Bible and pray more in order to please God and experience more of His love. Of course, it doesn’t work. We may know a lot about grace, but we need to experience grace for our minds to be renewed in order to move into the glorious freedom of the children of God. Freedom is living in the assurance that Jesus has done all that is needed to set us free from the past and from a guilty conscience.

In reality, being born again is a new beginning. It’s the beginning of a life-time’s journey of knowing Jesus more and more as our lives are set in a new direction. It is important to look back with gratitude at the blessings of the past and also to be willing to face negative and painful experiences of the past. Jesus is our healer and deliverer! He asks us to trust Him to bring us freedom and wholeness.

If we continue to blame the past for how we are today, we will be trapped there. We will keep going back to it. It’s good to remember that we have new life in Jesus. We are not victims of the past. The freedom Jesus bought by His death includes freedom from the consequences of sins we have committed and those committed against us. We can then sing with joy, “My chains are gone, I’ve been set free, my God, my Saviour has ransomed me, and like a flood His mercy reigns, unending love, amazing grace” (Chris Tomlin).

Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank You for Your amazing love in giving Jesus to set me free. Thank You that by the power of the Holy Spirit I am enabled to live a life of freedom in a broken world. Today I desire to live my life under the Lordship of Jesus, knowing that one day every knee will bow to Him, and every mouth will confess that He is Lord. Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Tuesday 5th October 2021

Amazement and Wonder

When we consider who God is and what He’s done, what would be the most appropriate response from us, as created beings? Surely it would be to marvel, wonder and be amazed? How can we fully comprehend Him? How can we ever fully grasp the things He’s done?
Of all His mighty works, the creation of all that exists is enough to leave us in amazement for the rest of our days. Though philosophy and science may help us understand something of it, the fact is that no-one really understands how the universe actually works. Despite all our knowledge, wisdom and cleverness, we’re unable to truly fathom the mysteries of the world God’s created.

Sadly a hallmark of today’s society appears to be that we’ve lost the ability to be amazed. How many of us pause from time to time to marvel at God’s works and exclaim ‘How great Thou Art’? Instead what we see is an increasing tendency towards cynicism, confusion and even desperation. But if our increase in knowledge doesn’t lead us to an increase in amazement and awe for God then we tragically miss the point.

Children are to be envied in regard to this. They get amazed by the smallest of things – the feathers of a bird, the size of an elephant or the taste of a sweetie. It’s all very exciting and wonderful to them. They enjoy simple things so much that they want to experience them over and over again. Though, as adults, we may never fully regain the sense of wonder we felt as a child over simple things, life would become more interesting (and also more fun!) if we learnt once more how to marvel at God and His works. Just consider this:

Isn`t it amazing that the God who created everything in existence is also interested in the minutest details of our lives?
Isn`t it amazing that, although God is all-powerful, He’s also the gentlest Person in the universe?
Isn`t it amazing that, even though Jesus is King of kings, He came to be the servant of us all?
Isn`t it amazing that the Son of God died for us?

How good it would be for us to spend time on a regular basis simply being amazed at how God worked out salvation for us! A great way of doing this is to look at the words of this famous hymn:

I stand amazed in the presence of Jesus the Nazarene,
And wonder how He could love me: a sinner, condemned unclean.
How marvellous! How wonderful! And my song shall ever be:
How marvellous! How wonderful! Is my Saviour’s love for me!

Prayer: Father in heaven, I thank You for the opportunities You’ve given me to be amazed. Please help me to have times when I can be child-like and marvel at Your mighty works, and be amazed at the God that You are. I want to say to You, that You’re incredible! I pray in Jesus’ name, Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Tuesday 28th September 2021

Sudden Storms

Here in Scotland we’re famous for many things. One is the amazingly dramatic weather changes we can experience in a short space of time. There have been many times when I’ve set off from home in t-shirt and sunglasses for a quick shopping trip, only to have the heavens open and rain thunder down on me, soaking me right through. But if I take my water-proof jacket with me, when the weather turns, I’m ready and prepared. Walking in the rain still isn’t necessarily pleasant, but it isn’t so terrible either.

And that’s how life is. Life can throw things at us so suddenly that it shakes us up. It may be a traumatic event, a harsh word, a shocking discovery, an accident or any number of things that you just can’t see coming. It shakes your security. It changes the direction of your life in a day, (or even a single moment).

Just as I need to have my protective coat with me at all times (even when I think I don’t need to), we need to be in the protection of God at all times. We need to know that whatever turmoil may come our way, He is there to give us protection, security and peace. As the rain washes over my protective jacket, so can the turmoil that rages around us, when we’re steady on our Rock.

This doesn’t make us immune to bad things happening to us; just as wearing a coat doesn’t make the rain stop falling. It may not be an enjoyable experience, but we can work through the turmoil knowing that God will keep us safe to the end.

So let’s set our foot on the Rock of our Salvation and enjoy the security and protection of knowing, whatever happens, He will always protect us – as long as we allow Him to.

Prayer: Father God, You’re the rock of my salvation and my protection in times of trial and trouble. I ask You to help me live my life under Your protection, (even when I think I am safe). In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Wednesday 22nd September 2021

A New Thing

As I was thinking and praying recently about many things, God brought the phrase to my mind, ‘I am doing a new thing’. This is found in Isaiah 43, which I have chosen for our scripture for today. You may recognise it, as it has been used many times in Seeds of the Kingdom. As I pondered this verse, I could imagine people saying, “You always say God is doing a new thing! Wasn’t that just for the people back then? A one-time occasion to which God was referring?”

Like a flash, I remembered story after story in the Old Testament when the Israelites were going into battle. When they asked God for a strategy for the battle, He had a different plan each time – a ‘new thing’! You can see this with Joshua and the Israelites walking around the walls of Jericho, but then they didn’t ask God for directions before attacking Ai and they were chased from the town. After they repented of the sin that was in the camp, God gave them directions to take all the fighting men and attack Ai, and this time they were victorious. Over and over, as the Israelites were following God’s commands, He gave them specific instructions for each battle.

We can see a similar idea in the New Testament. Jesus healed in a myriad of different ways – a ‘new thing’ for each occasion. God is continually doing a new thing. Our God is creative, and He has new things for us all the time.

‘Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past’. As human beings, we so easily get into the habit of doing things the same way. We think, “this is how we have always done it,” or we maybe ask for advice from different people, and we forget to ask God how He wants us to do things this time.

Sometimes we ask God for fresh insight for the big things, but with the ‘smaller’ things we don’t think to ask Him. I feel God encouraging us today to seek Him in the big and the small things. He wants to do a new thing. Let us look to Him so we can perceive it.

Prayer: Lord, forgive me for the times I have not looked to You for fresh ways of doing things. Remind me to look to You. I commit myself anew to listening for Your leading in the big things and the seemingly insignificant things. Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Friday 17th September 2021

It’s Our Heart That Sets Us Apart

One of the leading UK insurance companies is using the slogan, ‘It’s our heart that sets us apart’ in their current advertising, presumably trying to convince potential clients that their customer service is more understanding and considerate than others. That may or may not be the case, but it does cause me to reflect on the truth of that statement when applied to us as Christians.

We have been saved by accepting Christ into our ‘hearts’, meaning that inner most core part of our being. Scripture tells us that, in doing this, we become a different kind of person. The apostle Paul makes this clear when he says, ‘Anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life has gone; a new life has begun’ (2 Corinthians 5:17, NLT).

When the Spirit of God comes into our lives, He begins the work of transforming us into a new kind of person in the likeness of Christ. This is known as sanctification and is something which will continue until we meet Jesus, face to face. As this process continues, changes take place which make us that different type of person. Our attitudes, actions, ambitions, likes, dislikes, desires, and speech should all be affected as we are transferred from the kingdom of darkness into the kingdom of His dear Son, Jesus (Colossians 1:12-13). Our culture becomes the culture of the Kingdom of God, and we now live under a different set of rules and laws which should influence every aspect of our lives.

The prophet Ezekiel shows us that it has always been God’s desire to change the hearts of His people, those who would seek after Him, from hearts of stone to hearts of flesh (Ezekiel 36:26). This means hearts that are tender and responsive to His will.

This change of ‘heart’ sets us apart as different to the majority of those around us, but it also presents us with the challenge about whether that difference is noticeable. In these days of political correctness and opposition to so much of what we, as born-again Christians, stand for it is so easy to compromise and blend in with the majority.

Sanctification can be defined as ‘the state or process of being set apart for a special purpose.’ For the Christian that purpose is clearly stated in 1 Peter 2:9 (NLT), ‘You are a chosen people. You are royal priests, a holy nation, God’s very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for he called you out of the darkness into his wonderful light’.

As we try to display the goodness of God in our lives, the words of an old Sunday School chorus by A.E. Rennix might be a good prayer to pray every day.

Prayer: ‘Let it be seen that with Thee I have been, Jesus, my Lord and my Saviour. Let it be known I am truly Thine own by all my speech and behaviour.’ Amen

By Ellel Ministries

Thursday 16th  September 2021


If the sun is shining when I go out on my daily early morning walk, I can see it reflecting on the sea as I walk on the seafront. I so love looking at the sun reflecting on the water, and I often keep stopping to look. I always find myself thinking of the above verse about being changed from one degree of glory to another.

I was speaking with a friend a few days ago and commenting on the fact that we often cannot see how we are changing until we look back. This has been so true in my own life. I have had a long journey of healing, and in many ways, I am still on it. In a sense, all of us who are born again as believers are on this journey, because we will not be faultless until we stand before the Lord Jesus.

Sometimes we may feel discouraged and think that nothing is happening, but in Philippians 1:6 we read, ‘I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ’. What a promise we can hold on to in those times when we feel like nothing is happening!

And in Philippians 2:12-13 it says, ‘Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you both to will and to work for his good pleasure’. We work out by repenting and confessing our sins to the Lord, and He works in us by changing our hearts and renewing our minds.

At church yesterday we sang a song by a Nigerian Gospel singer called Sinarch, and some of the words brought such joy to me. I pray they will bless you too.

‘Waymaker, miracle worker, promise keeper, light in the darkness, my God, that is who You are … Even when I don’t see it, you’re working, even when I don’t feel it, You’re working … You never stop working. You never stop working’.

Prayer: Oh Father, how I thank You that You are always at work in me. I thank You that You have a plan for my life and that You will fulfil Your purpose for me as I keep in step with You, confessing and repenting of my sin. Thank You that You will complete what You have started and present me faultless in Your presence. I worship You, in Jesus’ name. Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Wednesday 15th  September 2021

Making A Difference

The next time you doubt the influence you are having on those around you and the difference you make to the whole spiritual atmosphere in which you live and work, just take a look at the lives of Jacob and his son Joseph.

Jacob had spent many years in service to his uncle Laban, his family had increased and so had the numbers of their livestock. But when he began to feel it might be time to move on he said this: “For what you had before I came was little, and it has increased to a great amount; the LORD has blessed you since my coming.” (Gen 30:30, NKJV)

In fact, just 3 verses earlier, we read that Laban himself had recognised this and had pleaded with Jacob, “Please stay, if I have found favor in your eyes, for I have learned by experience that the LORD has blessed me for your sake.” (Gen 30:27, NKJV)

It is interesting to note that similar comments were made a generation later when Joseph had been bought as a slave by Potipher the Egyptian from the Midianites.“So it was, from the time that he had made him overseer of his house and all that he had, that the LORD blessed the Egyptian’s house for Joseph’s sake.” (Gen 39:5, NKJV)

Although their circumstances were very different, the presence of God in Jacob’s and Joseph’s lives was evident and noticed by those around them as it brought Divine favour to the benefit of all.

Ultimately, and in a moment of time, God transformed Joseph’s life of imprisonment with a meteoric rise to the second in command under Pharaoh, and the influence of the Spirit of the Lord through Joseph saved the then known world – including Joseph’s family – from a devastating famine.

In Jacob, the destiny of a nation was at stake. After wrestling with God, his name was changed to Israel and the magnitude of transformation that God wrought in his life radically influenced the generations to come, and thus, the nation of Israel, but also ultimately, all the families of the earth. One man’s life blessed a nation, and through it, the world.

Your circumstances may not be of your choosing, but as you walk in obedience to the Lord He knows the way you take and is ordering your footsteps and His very presence within you blesses others and changes the spiritual atmosphere where you are. God is in the business of transforming us and also those who touch our lives every day and His plans are always far grater than we can ever imagine.

Prayer: Dear Lord, Thank you for not only blessing our lives, but for blessing the lives of others around us, even though we are not always aware of it. Help us to realise that where we go, you go and that your great plan of salvation for all is constantly at work, for your greater glory. In Jesus Name, Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Wednesday 1st  September 2021


I was cleaning up our garden bench, treating it with special wood-oil. The can of oil carries a well-known advertising slogan, which says, ‘It does exactly what it says on the tin’. That’s integrity: a perfect match between what you see in a person’s life and what’s in that person’s heart – between the inside and the outside. When he speaks of ‘the false way’, David means a course of action that is out of kilter with his inner being; what he does being in conflict with what he thinks and believes. We sometimes call it hypocrisy. Let’s face it. We all struggle with integrity. Who doesn’t want to appear better than they really are? David asks for two things: that God should take the false way from him, and that He should impart His Law.

I’ve been trying to improve the grass around our home. Most of it wasn’t grass, but moss. I had to do two things: kill the moss and sow grass. Without killing the moss, the grass seed wouldn’t stand a chance. Unless God removes the ‘false way’, His Law may make us feel guilty, but it won’t change our life.

His Law – His Torah. That’s not just the commandments, but everything that can be included in teaching and instruction – the whole revelation of His will for godly living. When he asks God to ‘graciously grant him His Law’, David’s not thinking about reading it from a scroll. He’s thinking of having it ‘written in his heart’. God had promised that His Law would be very close to His people – in their mouths, even in their hearts’ (Deuteronomy 30:31). And, by His Spirit, God’s laws are written in every believer’s heart (Jeremiah 31:33).

If God is going to remove the false way from us, then we need to live ‘from the inside out’. I find that so many of my reactions and responses are controlled by what’s going on around me. I’m living ‘from the outside in’. What comes from the outside isn’t always good, and so easily feeds the false way.

It’s a bit of a challenge, isn’t it? Jesus warned His followers that they would inevitably encounter opposition and persecution. But they weren’t to worry. The Holy Spirit would give them the words to say so that they wouldn’t lose their integrity. When He was tempted in the wilderness, God’s word enabled Him to defeat the enemy and keep Himself pure.

It’s the same for us. As we allow God’s law to nourish and sustain us on the inside, we will live it on the outside, keeping our integrity.

Prayer: Lord, I’m sorry for the times when I’ve lost my integrity, when there’s a mismatch between what I seem to be and what I really am. Today I ask You to cleanse my heart and keep me walking in Your way. Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Tuesday 31st  August 2021

A Legacy For The Lord

I once met a godly woman who was speaking at a weekend retreat and, after spending some time in her company, I found myself praying specifically, “Lord, whatever that woman has, I would like it”. When the Lord places people in our lives who are godly, authentic and live out their life and ministry with integrity in plain sight, you can’t help but be impacted and challenged by their example.

Joshua was Moses’ aid from his youth (Numbers 11:28) and we are first introduced to him at the battle with the Amalekites (Exodus 17:9) where he led the forces of Israel to victory under the overall leadership of his mentor Moses. Because of Joshua’s position, he was able to accompany Moses partway up Mount Sinai when the Ten Commandments were given and also aided him at the tent of meeting (Exodus 24:13-14, & 33:11).

Joshua was one of the spies chosen to view the land of Canaan and, along with Caleb, gave an encouraging report on the land, resulting in the two of them being permitted to enter the Promised Land, while all the other adults of their generation died in the wilderness (Numbers 13:8,16, & 14:6-30).

Joshua was a man of faith, spiritually minded, courageous, obedient, and he walked in the fear of the Lord, just like his mentor Moses. He was divinely appointed and ordained by God as successor of Moses (Numbers 27:18-23) and led the people of Israel into the promised land, remaining faithful to God throughout his life. His steadfast example was a powerful legacy to the people, just as Moses’ example had been to him.

The woman that I met so long ago is now one of my most trusted and cherished friends. She is still a mentor to me in so many ways and continues to be an example of godly womanhood, humility, integrity and faithfulness to God, as she lives out her life, marriage and ministry. Simply put, she had always generously shared her relationship with God with me!

I now often pray and invite the Lord to use me in this same way, asking Him to allow me opportunities to disciple and mentor the ones He places in my path.

If you have a godly mentor, today may be a wonderful day to let them know how they have impacted your life. If you don’t, then can I encourage you to ask the Lord to send someone. And if you are like my godly friend and have spent years mentoring and giving of yourself to the body of Christ, I would l like to say, “Thank you so very much from the bottom of my heart!”

Prayer: Father, thank You for Your word, which breathes life and light into my life. Thank You for the people that You have used over the years to mentor, teach and disciple me in Your ways. I always want to remain teachable so that I can remain faithful to You and leave a godly legacy. I am never too old to be mentored and, even if I am young, I can share my relationship with You with someone. Lead me, I pray, in Jesus’ name. Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Tuesday 17th August 2021

The Place of Waiting

David is a fascinating biblical character. When I am battling with my emotions and times of uncertainty in life, I try to do what David did. Many times, in the Psalms, David reminded himself of who God is and His faithfulness to him.

In Psalm 18 there’s an introduction that says David was writing this as a psalm of praise to the Lord after being rescued from the hands of his enemies, including from King Saul. I find it interesting that David did not write this psalm after being crowned king in Jerusalem. He did not write it after seeing the fulfillment of God’s promise to him that he would be the next king of Israel. He was writing it after being delivered from Saul. He might actually have been writing it from the inside of a cave.

David spent fourteen years waiting for God’s promise to him to be fulfilled, and seven of those years were spent on the run, hiding in caves from King Saul, who was constantly trying to kill him! And yet this is the place where David is writing this psalm. It was not after he was settled on the throne in Jerusalem and could say with certainty that God’s word to him had proved true. It was while he was still waiting for that promise happen.

I don’t know about you, but I find some of the hardest places in life are the places of waiting. They can be places filled with doubt and fear, and I imagine that David had plenty of time to question whether what God said to him would come true or not. But in that place of waiting, he wrote these words, ‘This God – his way is perfect; the word of the Lord proves true; he is a shield for all those who take refuge in him.’

Can I invite you today to join me, if you are in a place of uncertainty? Let’s take refuge in the Lord and He will be a shield for us, while we wait on Him. God is the same God for us as He was for David, and we can safely put our trust in Him.

Prayer: Father, we come to You today and we ask You to help us trust in You, as David did. You are a good father, and we know that You are able to work out Your plans for our lives. And we ask that You will be a shield for us today, as we take refuge in You. Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Monday 16th August 2021

Absolute Truth

Pilate asked ‘What is truth’? – A question which we probably all have asked at some point in our lives. The Bible is very straightforward in answering this question. “I am the truth” Jesus said,’ (John 14:6). In Psalm 119:160 it says ‘All Your words are true’ and in verse 89 ‘Your word, O Lord, is eternal; it stands firm in the heavens’. Ultimately, all truth is in Jesus, and the Bible gives us assurance that whatever God says is true. When we realise that we can trust God for the truth. We need look no further.

One of my all-time favorite quotes is a saying attributed to Archimedes: ‘Give me a place to stand on, and I will move the earth!’ From a mathematical point of view this could be true, providing Archimedes also had a very lengthy lever at his disposal. But it speaks to me about the importance of having a firm place to put our feet on, the importance of possessing a foundation of truth from which we can live our lives.

But I believe we will never find truth if we only have ourselves, that is our own intellect, as a starting point. We may try as hard as we can to make sense of the world around us from the information we can gather – but we’ll always fail to reach the truth. What we need is a place to stand on outside of ourselves. We need to know there is an absolute truth. We need to know that there is something that will always remain true, whether we like it or not, believe it or not, even whether we ourselves are around or not. God, in His kindness to us, has provided that foundation of absolute truth for us. He sent His Son and He gave us His Word.

I would think it’s fair to say that somewhere in the last century the question ‘What is truth?’ has for the most part been replaced by another one. Society is no longer asking what the truth is, but now asks: ‘Does absolute truth exist?’ Jesus claimed there is absolute truth, and what’s more, that He is The Truth. Let’s make sure that we, as Christians, remain faithful, and continue to proclaim that there is an absolute truth, and that it is to be found in Jesus Christ, and in Him alone. We might be unpopular, but we will be able to ‘build our house on a rock’ instead of on ‘sandy land’. As a result the Lord Himself will call us wise (Matthew 7:24-27). And after all, who wouldn’t want that?

Prayer: Thank You, Father in heaven, for giving us Your truth and for giving us a foundation for our lives. Please help us to take our stand when it comes to proclaiming Your truth into this world, in Jesus’ name. Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Friday 13th August 2021

What If

In the room on the top floor of our home, that I use as a study, I have a notice board where I can pin prayer reminders or telephone numbers or inspiring verses or quotes. One piece of paper pinned on the board carries some words attributed to Corrie Ten Boom. They are, ‘Worry does not empty tomorrow of sorrow, but it does empty today of strength’. Those words are really another way of expressing the words of Jesus when He told us not to worry about tomorrow, because today has enough troubles of its own. But they have caused me to think afresh on how often my own thoughts can drift from the present moment to worrying about something that may or may not happen in the future.

I recently had a routine medical screening that tested for the same condition that took my dad’s life earlier this year. My imagination went to very unhelpful places during the week I waited for the test results. When they finally came, they were clear and showed nothing to be concerned about. My fears and anxious thoughts of ‘what if …’ had been groundless. I had experienced something of the truth of Corrie Ten Boom’s words during that week of waiting.

After God revealed Himself to Moses in the burning bush and commissioned him to go and deliver the Israelites from their Egyptian slavery, Moses wanted to know who he should say had sent him. He wanted to know God’s name. The Lord’s simple, yet profound, reply to Moses was that he should say that ‘I AM’ had sent him. He wanted Moses and the Israelites, and us today, to know and trust Him as the God of now, the One who is ever present.

In our verse for today’s Seed God promises that, when we go through life’s deep waters, we won’t be overwhelmed, because He will be right there with us. It’s a promise that I so need to allow deeper into my own heart and to hold up as a shield of faith when the unknowns and ‘what ifs’ of the future threaten to rob me of today’s strength. I’ve found these words from the song ‘Your Faithfulness’ by Brian Doerksen so encouraging at times like that:

‘I don’t know what this day will bring.
Will it be disappointing or filled with longed for things?
I don`t know what tomorrow holds.
Still, I know, I can trust Your faithfulness.
I don’t know if these clouds mean rain.
If they do, will they pour down blessing or pain?
I don’t know what the future holds. Still, I know I can trust Your faithfulness.’

Prayer: Heavenly Father, please help me to live each day in the strength You give for that day, and to trust that whatever comes my way in the future, You will be there to uphold and carry me through whatever I have to face. Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Thursday 12th August 2021

Inexpressable and Glorious Joy

Joy is not a common word today, but it’s a biblical word, occurring well over 200 times in Scripture. Have you ever thought that if more of God’s children were filled with joy more unbelievers might desire to be like them?

So what is joy in the life of a Christian? It’s very difficult to put emotional experiences into words so I’ll begin with three things it isn’t and three things it is.

Firstly it isn’t an act of will power. It can’t be mustered up. It’s real, and it’s a spontaneous response of our hearts for what God has done for us in Jesus. The more we appreciate what Jesus has done for us on the cross the more joyful we will be.

Secondly it isn’t superficial. It’s deep and firm, so it can flourish in the midst of pain, sorrow and suffering. It’s not dependent on circumstances, but on the reality of knowing God.

Thirdly it’s not natural. It’s spiritual. When something is called spiritual in Scripture it means it comes from the Holy Spirit and has the character of the Holy Spirit. Real joy is the kind of joy God has. Jesus knew this joy when the seventy-two disciples He’d sent out on a mission returned to Him and reported all they’d done in His name. ‘Jesus was full of joy through the Holy Spirit’ (Luke 10:21). The phrase actually means ‘Jesus jumped for joy’.

Joy’s been described as ‘the over-brimming sense of God’s presence in our lives’. It’s the opposite of unbelief and negativity. It isn’t an automatic process in our lives, so let’s look at its sources.

It’s the result of knowledge in our heart that God loves us individually and that He’s demonstrated that love by giving the gift of His Son (Romans 5:3-5). Truly knowing the love of God towards us will inevitably fill us with great joy.

Then it’s the result of us knowing that we love God, as we see in our text for today where Peter wrote to those who were suffering for their faith. The fact that they could still be filled with joy in the face of suffering was evidence that their faith was genuine.

It’s also the result of obeying the command of Jesus to love others (John 15:9-12). Jesus has demonstrated His love to us, and we’re to love others in the same sacrificial way that He’s loved us. When we follow the example of Jesus by loving others as we’ve been loved our joy is complete.

Finally it’s the result of the Holy Spirit overflowing in our lives (Acts 13:52). He is the source of joy. A Spirit-filled Christian is a joyful Christian. The work of the Holy Spirit is to point us away from ourselves and towards Jesus. Introspection and joy are not compatible, and it’s thankfulness which makes our hearts glad and fills us with joy.

Prayer: Lord, as I go through today help me to remember that You’re always with me. Thank You for Your amazing love demonstrated at the cross. Thank You also for the flicker of love implanted by the Holy Spirit in my heart for You. Fill me afresh today with the Holy Spirit so I’ll be a witness attracting other people to You. Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Wednesday 11th August 2021

Peace Be With You

When I first encountered Jesus, and before I really knew anything about Him, I read these words in our verse for today and was captivated by the profound promise He gives here. My own world had ‘fallen apart’ when I opened the door of my heart to Jesus, because that also meant I’d closed it to so much of the life, goals and relationships I’d previously held dear. The circumstances of my life were in turmoil and so ‘peace’, in any sense of certainty, security or calm, was very much an elusive dream in the midst of that rollercoaster ride I was experiencing.

But into the middle of that came Jesus.

The thing I tasted then, in leaning on Him when the world around me was shaking, was that Jesus really does give peace in a way that the world doesn’t and can’t.

The world is only able to give us peace when ‘all our ducks are in a row’. We can feel a sense of peace when our loved ones are well and thriving or when our relationships are all good, when the mortgage is secure, when there aren’t any health scares or when our work is fulfilling, fruitful, maybe. But how long does that sense of wellbeing last? In my life, I can sometimes feel that kind of peace for a moment or two – until the next thing comes along to ravage my heart.

Alternatively, Jesus is able to give us peace when everything in life is a nightmare!

This passage in John’s Gospel is actually at a moment of real confusion for the disciples. It’s just before Jesus goes to the cross. He has a whole conversation with his friends about Him leaving them, about Him sending them another ‘Comforter’ to be with them after He’s gone, but they don’t really ‘get’ it: maybe it will make sense later.

So, Jesus is not talking here about the sense of peace that can come when everything is fabulous and glorious and triumphant in the traditional way. He’s talking about giving them a deeper, richer, enduring peace in Himself when the world hates Him and them and the whole earth is trembling around them.

The extraordinary nature of the peace that only Jesus can bring is even clearer when He comes again right into the heart of a moment when there’s no earthly reason whatsoever to feel anything other than confusion and horror and despair.

He comes to the disciples and brings His peace again in the Upper Room after they’ve seen him crucified and buried. They’re terrified. All their hopes have been shattered. All their expectations of ‘Messiah’ (the big rescuing hero who they thought would rescue them from the Romans) have been ruined. At this point they’re not only dead to hopes of the future but they’re in real fear for their very lives. And what does He say: “Peace be with you” (John 20:19).

Jesus comes to them in that moment of horror, and He comes to us too, whatever we’re facing, whatever trouble, uncertainty, fear, or actual present sorrow. He comes – with His peace. It’s deeper than our circumstances and on a whole different level to that which the world brings.

Prayer: Oh, dear Lord Jesus, thank You. Thank You for understanding that our lives are such a mixture of hope and fear, of confusion and longing. We’re so grateful that You know us inside out and that our past, present and future are not a mystery to You. Thank You that You are secure and stable however wobbly our lives might feel. Thank You so, so, much that You bring us Your peace. Your peace. Please help us to receive Your peace, which is bigger and deeper and more sustaining than anything our messy, painful world can provide. Whatever my circumstances today, please help me turn to You and to rest in You above all. Help me to let You fill me with Your peace. Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Tuesday 10th August 2021

The Power of Your Testimony

Society would tell us that to be successful and to have a great life everything must be perfect. We need to have been brought up by wonderful, loving parents, live in a beautiful home, have a great job, drive a new car, have lots of disposable income and have lots of friends.

However, we know that this is not realistic, and circumstances arise that cause us difficulties, pain and suffering. Jesus said, “In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world” (John 16:33b). Personally speaking, these ‘troubles’ have drawn me close to God and through them He has taught me more about Himself and His love and care for me. This has given me a testimony to share with others of how God has walked, and continues to walk, with me through the struggles and difficulties.

As a parent of three, I have watched our children go through difficulties and have desperately wanted to help them and ‘fix it’ for them, so that they didn’t have to struggle. As I was pleading with God one day as to what I could do to help one of them and take away their pain, He reminded me that this was my child’s story. What was happening in my child’s life was part of their testimony. Without the struggle my child would not be able to receive God’s touch in their life for themselves.

Because of my struggles and the healing that God has brought to me, I can understand others who struggle in the same way, get alongside them and share God’s love and what He has done for me. God reminded me that He wants this to be my child’s story too.
As this particular child continues to struggle on a daily basis, I have to keep reminding myself that this is their story, but because of my testimony and God’s faithfulness in walking with me each day, I trust God that He will give my child the testimony that He promised me.

Prayer: Father God, forgive me, Lord, for trying to ‘fix’ the struggles in my loved ones’ lives. I thank You for the testimony that You have given me, and continue to give me, as I walk daily with You. Thank You that, because You love those we love, we can trust that You are giving them their own testimony to share with others. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Monday 9th August 2021

Strength In The Battle

The Bible has so many inspiring accounts of people facing battles during their lives and of how they persevered in the strength of the Lord. When faced with tough situations in our own lives, we are often so unprepared that we just go into survival mode. We forget these biblical accounts and how the servants of the Lord overcame.

Circumstances in our lives can change so suddenly that we often experience it as being completely knocked off our feet, gasping for breath. Sometimes the pain of a situation can feel absolutely unbearable, and we don’t know how we are going to survive or ever feel normal again. It’s tough to face the reality that there is not going to be a quick solution. There is a knowing inside that we will have to walk this road, even if everything inside of us wants the crisis to go away and for life to be as it was before. We need strength to face these battles, whatever they are.

Going back to the account of David completely trusting the Lord for the way forward, this has always been an inspiration to me. I always picture him with his men, having to decide on the battle plan against the enemy. I picture horses neighing and stomping around, men discussing options and preparing their army gear, as they were awaiting orders – the atmosphere must’ve been quite tense. In the midst of all this, David listened for the Lord’s voice, and subsequently the Lord gave them the victory once again.

What strikes me the most is that the Lord told David to listen for the sound of marching in the poplar trees. The Afrikaans translation uses the word ‘rustling’ in the treetops. It made me wonder how quiet and focused David had to be in himself in order to hear that sound in the treetops. If he had allowed fear and doubt in, he probably would not have been able to follow the Lord’s instructions.

So, what are we to do when we find ourselves in the midst of a battle? Psalm 40: 1-2 gives us direction, and once again it is David turning to the Lord, when he says: “I waited patiently for the Lord; He turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; He set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand.”

When facing a battle, we need a firm place to stand. We need to know where our strength and safety can be found. This is always our starting place, where we face a battle from. No matter how you are feeling, it is so important to still choose to walk this journey with the Lord. You can tell Him that you are so disappointed, or hurt, or afraid, or angry, or doubting His goodness. You can tell Him everything. Allow Him to become your safe place where your feet have a firm place to stand. It’s never too late to ask Jesus to become your Rock and your Salvation. In Psalm 51:17 we read that the Lord will never despise a broken and contrite heart.

Lean on Him today and yield to His mercy and kindness. Allow Him to bring hope and wholeness to you, to be your strength and show you the next step. Let Him settle your heart and your anxious thoughts, so that you can hear His voice in the midst of the battle you are facing.

Prayer: Dear Lord Jesus, I come before You today in the midst of this battle I am facing. I can’t do this on my own and need Your strength, Lord. I choose to hold on to Your words in Isaiah 41:10, ‘So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.’ I believe that You will bring me through this battle, one step at a time, because You give my feet a firm place to stand. Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Friday 6th August 2021

Called By Your Name

Many years ago, when I taught in a Comprehensive School, my first aim was always to learn the name of every child in each class I taught. I knew that, once I knew their names, I could get their attention and begin to develop a relationship of mutual respect. Our name is important because it is part of our unique identity and individuality. To call someone by their name makes words we speak more personal and is often interpreted as being caring and empathic.

As our text for today indicates, our relationship with God begins when we are redeemed from the consequences of sin. We are assured that the Creator of the universe called each one of us by name and made us His own. He wrote each individual name in the Lamb’s Book of Life (Revelation 21:27). We are, therefore, told not to fear. So, remember that He will always be with you, even if you feel overwhelmed and at the end of your tether. You are precious and honoured in His sight and He loves you (Isaiah 43:4).

Jesus called some people by name, and it was always for a purpose. Zacchaeus was a chief tax collector. He was a notorious cheat and traitor, hated and rejected by the Jews, because he worked for the Romans, who occupied their country. One day, hiding up a sycamore tree in order to catch a glimpse of Jesus, who was passing through his town, he heard Jesus call his name. “Zacchaeus, come down immediately. I must stay at your house today” (Luke 19:5-6).

The situation was urgent. Jesus was on His way to the cross and would never pass this way again. Zacchaeus humbled himself, descended the tree to stand face to face with Jesus, who dearly loved this sinner. Zacchaeus was given a new beginning and a new future. Maybe, like me, you have heard Jesus call your name and speak to you, because He wants to give you a new beginning. It may mean taking a leap of faith, but He will lead you as you trust Him.

Immediately after Jesus had celebrated the last supper with His disciples, an argument arose among them as to which of them was considered greatest. Jesus singled out Simon Peter, and said to him, “Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift you as wheat (bring you to ruin through denial) but I have prayed for you Simon, that your faith may not fail” (Luke 22:31-32). Jesus called Simon by name to warn him that a spiritual battle was ahead, one which Satan would not ultimately win, for Jesus had prayed for Simon and he would be restored. I wonder if you can recall spiritual battles that you have faced. Do you recall hearing Jesus call you by name and speak to you in a way that warned you that something lay ahead which you did not currently understand, making you feel uneasy? I’m so thankful that, over the years, when I have faced major battles, during which Satan has been seeking to frustrate the purposes of God’s kingdom, I have been warned. I’m so grateful that Jesus, the Great High Priest, interceded for me, however tough things may have seemed at the time (see Hebrews 7:24-25). Therefore, ‘We are more than conquerors through Him who loved us’.

Mary Magdalene travelled with Jesus as one of His followers, supporting Jesus out of her own means. She dearly loved Jesus who had healed her and delivered her of seven demons (Luke 8:1-2). She had witnessed His terrible death, watched his burial and was the first to witness the empty tomb. Weeping and overwhelmed with sorrow, through her grief, she heard the risen Jesus speak her name, “Mary,” and she recognised Him. Can you imagine the gentleness in the voice of Jesus, full of comfort, compassion and renewed hope? If grief, sadness or sorrow fills your heart today, seek the risen Jesus for comfort and healing. Hear Him say, “I have called you by name and you are mine.”

Prayer: Thank You, Lord Jesus, that, by Your Spirit, You still speak today. Open my heart to hear You call my name, and give me grace to listen and to obey Your still small voice. I praise You that You are risen and alive for evermore, seated at the right hand of the Father, interceding for those whom You have called. Please use me to honour You and bring glory to Your name. Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Thursday 5th August 2021

The Spirit Of Antichrist

Although the apostle John wrote his letter to the churches two thousand years ago, I find his words seem to be particularly relevant for today, as I read the news about what is happening around the world. John is warning his readers about a world system that is opposed to God and revealing how unseen spiritual forces are guiding people’s speech and actions. He is reminding them that they have the Holy Spirit within them to distinguish God’s truth from the lies of the devil.

There is a surprisingly strong aversion to Jesus Christ today, even the democratic societies of the west, which had Christian values in the past. It is seen in the many attempts to silence and intimidate Christian believers working in the field of politics, education, law, medicine, sport, entertainment and news media. The open proclamation of the Gospel message is being opposed more fiercely than ever before, as Christians have spoken out the truth of God’s word. I have heard of teachers, nurses, university lecturers, and even a magistrate, being falsely accused and dismissed from their professions. University students have been thrown out of courses. Street preachers have been arrested and fined.

In the UK, these people have had resort to going to Christian lawyers to fight their case in the law courts, not only to protest their innocence, but to try and stop discrimination against Christians having evangelistic events in public venues or expressing biblical viewpoints. Even after winning their cases, the sober reality is that these attacks do not show any signs of decreasing in the future.

John spoke of testing the spirits to see whether they are from God (1 John 4:1). ‘By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is form God, and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of antichrist, which you heard was coming and now is in the world already. Little children, you are from God and have overcome them, for he who is in you is greater than he who is in the world’ (1 John 4:2-4).

How encouraging that John said we have overcome the antichrist spirits in the world! The Holy Spirit within us is greater than them. We are to push back the powers of darkness, as we proclaim the name of Jesus and stand on the promises of God.

‘Standing on the promises of Christ, my King, through eternal ages let His praises ring. Glory in the highest, I will shout and sing, standing on the promises of God. … Standing on the promises of Christ the Lord, bound to Him eternally by love’s strong cord, overcoming daily with the Spirit’s sword, standing on the promises of God’ (Russell Kelso Carter, 1886).

Prayer: Heavenly Father, may I be able to discern antichrist spirits and be able to resist them in the name of Jesus Christ, my Lord and Saviour. Help me, each day, to stick close to Jesus and to focus on the plumb line of truth in Your word. Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Wednesday 4th August 2021

Who do you want to be like?

The other day I saw an interesting cartoon in a national newspaper: the picture was of a newsreader saying: “The universe said it felt insignificant after seeing Jeff Bezos”. It related to the story of Jeff Bezos, currently the world’s richest man, who had just successfully completed a trip to the edge of space in his spacecraft. In worldly terms it was quite an achievement. The race to space seems to herald the latest challenge for some of the world’s richest entrepreneurs.

It made me ponder what it would be like to be Jeff Bezos and ask myself would I want to be like Jeff Bezos? Then, as the cartoon oh-so-cleverly put the achievement into perspective, it made me consider a comparison between Mr Bezos and the one whom the apostle Paul encourages us to seek to be more like: Jesus Christ.

I wonder how many, on the face of it, would be interested in being more like Mr. Bezos, with his immense fortune and opportunities to undertake such exciting ventures, than being like Jesus in his worldly poverty and untimely death. So why would Paul suggest we should seek to have the same attitude as Jesus? I think the irony of the cartoon might actually give us a few clues.

Mr Bezos and his team successfully flew into space and enjoyed a brief period of weightlessness. Jesus was there at the very beginning of space itself. (It always awes me that, almost as a ‘throw away’ statement, Genesis 1:16 says: “He also made the stars.”)

Mr Bezos’s company has enabled him to become the world’s richest man. It is named after the Amazon forest, which is probably the world’s most important means of regulating the entire earth’s climate. Yet it was Jesus who spoke the Amazon rainforest into existence.

Mr Bezos has accumulated a vast net worth but, ultimately, when he passes away, how much of that will he be able to take with him? Whereas Jesus has now been exalted to the highest place and at his name every knee will ultimately bow.

The contrasts are numerous, but Paul doesn’t call us to imitate any earthly entrepreneur, no matter how wealthy, but rather tells us to have the same attitude as Christ Jesus: ‘Who, being in very nature God did not consider equality with God something to be grasped but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant’ (Philippians 2:5-11).

Prayer: Dear Lord, however enticing earthly wealth and power may appear, help me to keep an eternal perspective rather than a this-worldly one. Please help me focus my attention on becoming more like Jesus. By Your Spirit, may I be transformed into His likeness, little by little, day by day, starting right now. Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Tuesday 3rd August 2021

When Fear Knocks On The Door

Have you ever experienced breakthrough, or a great answer to prayer, only to be followed by a battle with doubt, fear or a challenging situation? Elijah did, and I have too. Let’s look at Elijah’s story a bit closer to see what we can glean from his situation.

In 1 Kings 18, we read about the amazing triumph Elijah experienced against the prophets of Baal, as the Lord proved Himself true before the people. They saw that Baal was a false god and that the Lord God was the one and only true and living God. What happened, though, within a short time after that, is surprising. Once Jezebel heard what had happened to her precious prophets of Baal, she got angry and threatened to kill Elijah. And he didn’t wait on the Lord, but scarpered for his life, upon hearing about her threats. And just the day before he had witnessed a display of God’s awesome power! This mighty prophet of God was intimidated by one person’s threatening words.

We can be vulnerable after we have experienced breakthrough or seen God doing something wonderful, and it is wise to guard our hearts. The bible has good advice regarding this. 1 Peter 5:8-9 says ‘Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith’.

Ephesians 6 explains that our battle is not against flesh and blood but against the enemy. The battle may also come through interactions with others or how we are treated by others. For example, bad treatment at the hands of others, or bad news from the hospital, school, workplace can unsettle us and open a door to fear or worry.

The battlefield is generally in our minds! The Lord, who gave such triumph to Elijah, had not changed from one day to the next, from being all powerful to being weak. What had happened in Elijah’s thinking? And what can happen to us? A thought can impact our emotions, if we dwell on it, and it may then influence our choices. How do we combat this battle in our thinking? 2 Corinthians 10:5 offers a great solution: ‘We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.’

The Bible tells us that God’s peace protects our hearts and minds and goes on to explain the things that which are good for us to think about, ‘Whatever is true, noble, just, pure, lovely, of good report and praiseworthy’ (Philippians 4:8).

My prayer for each of us today is this, “Now may the Lord of peace Himself grant you His peace at all times and in every way (that peace and spiritual well-being that comes to those who walk with Him, regardless of life’s circumstances)” (2 Thessalonians 3:16 (AMP).

Prayer: Dear Lord, help me to take captive every thought which could cause anxiety and to think about things which bring life and joy. Thank You for Your peace which protects my mind and heart. I ask You to fill me with that peace. Help me also encourage others to find their peace in You. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

By Ellel Ministries

Wednesday 28th July 2021

When My Words Fall Short

Have you ever run out of words while praying about something or for someone, where you do not know how to articulate what is in your heart, because your mind and emotions are unsettled and in turmoil? I have. What am I to do when my words fall short, and my faith feels weak?

The Holy Spirit reminded me of the Scripture passage in Romans 8:26-27 one night, as I lay awake, because my mind was trying to make sense of something that was causing me to feel troubled, and the prayer I was praying felt weak and full of desperation, rather than full of faith. Romans 8:26 says that the Holy Spirit comes to our aid and bears us up in our weakness. Another translation says He “helps us”. The word used in the Greek is “synantilambanetai” which means “helps as we help one that would lift up a burden, by lifting over against him at the other end.” What a beautiful image to explain what the Holy Spirit comes to do for us!

Sometimes ‘we do not know what prayer to offer nor how to offer it worthily as we ought’, but when we do not have the language to express our pain, anxiety and desperation, or to know how we need to bring our request to God in prayer, the Holy Spirit ‘goes to meet our supplication and pleads in our behalf with unspeakable yearnings and groanings too deep for utterance’ (verse 26). As I pondered this, I was reminded of God’s great love and tender mercies towards me as His daughter. When I come to the end of myself, and my own resources to try and process a situation, His Holy Spirit comes running to meet my supplication and pleads in my behalf.

Ephesians 6:18 encourages us to ‘Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion’. This scripture forms part of Paul’s teaching about the armour of God – the manner in which we are to arm ourselves to deal with our enemy whose mandate it is to steal, kill and destroy. When we pray in the Spirit, our minds and emotions are brought to a place of peace, as we trust the Holy Spirit to intercede for us, according to God’s perfect will. When you bring all your anxieties and concerns to God in prayer, Philippians 4:7 (AMP) promises that ‘the peace of God [that peace which reassures the heart, that peace] which transcends all understanding, [that peace which] stands guard over your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus [is yours]’.

While we are alive on this earth, we will face times of turmoil from within and without. This may be very overwhelming at times, but as we pour out our hearts before God, we can know without a doubt that the Holy Spirit ‘does our praying in and for us, making prayer out of our wordless sighs, our aching groans. He knows us far better than we know ourselves…and keeps us present before God. That’s why we can be so sure that every detail in our lives of love for God is worked into something good’ (Romans 8:26-28, MSG).

Prayer: Thank You, Holy Spirit, that You are my Helper and Counsellor. Thank You that You intercede for me when I struggle to pray and lack the words to express myself to You. Thank You for Your comfort and compassion towards me as Your child, and for bearing me up in times of weakness. I love You, Lord. Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Tuesday 27th July 2021

Absolutely Nothing

Recently I have been reading and re-reading Romans 8:31-39 in the NLT version, and it has been a huge blessing, as I realised these verses really encapsulate the whole of the gospel message. Whichever version of the bible you may choose to read these verses from, I’m sure it will inspire you, as you read them slowly, and perhaps even read them out loud.

This portion of Scripture really covers everything that we could ever list as possible reasons why we could ever be separated from Christ’s love, yet at the same time it reassures us that none of these things can ever do so.

I have to admit that I do struggle at times to believe I am still loved by God. These are the times when I “mess up” by getting irritable or impatient with others, lose my temper, times when I act selfishly, wanting my own way rather than considering another person`s wishes, times when I feel angry towards someone who has upset me, then struggle with unforgiveness, times when I “chicken out” and fail to speak up and tell others about the salvation that is available to them through the death and resurrection of Jesus.

Then there’s the times I would prefer to relax and watch something on TV rather than read my bible or spend time in prayer, and I begin to feel indifferent to what I know should be my priority in life, which is to put Jesus first in everything. That’s when the enemy “comes in like a flood” and tells me “That’s it. You’ve gone too far, and God has given up on you. So, why bother trying?” I think to myself, “How on earth can God still love me when I let Him down so often?”

How incredibly reassuring it is to read and absorb the truths of these wonderful verses in Romans 8! The amazing thing is God does still love me, despite all these things. However, this is by no means an excuse to dismiss my sin by adopting the attitude, “Well God loves me anyway, so I can continue living my life as I please”. This sort of attitude is certainly not true repentance. There needs to be a sincere desire not to sin and to ask God’s forgiveness when the old sinful nature seeks to gain control again and I end up doing things that dishonour the Lord, who gave His life for me.

Maybe you can identify with some of these issues in your own life, and like me you sometimes feel uncertain about God’s love for you. Can I encourage you to read Romans 8:31-39 through several times, in your preferred bible version? As you do so, may you be truly blessed and reassured, as I was.

Prayer: Thank You, Lord, that You love me for who I am and not for what I do, or don’t do. Even when I don’t feel loved by You, the fact is You do still love me so much more than I can ever comprehend. And nothing, absolutely nothing, can ever separate me from Your amazing love and grace, which I have done nothing to deserve. Amen.

By Ellel Ministries

Wednesday 21st July 2021

Ephesians 2:4-10

Many people believe that piling up good works makes them right with the Lord. Yet the only payment for sin that can satisfy divine justice is death (Rom. 6:23). This is why God sent His Son Jesus to die in our place. Jesus’ death satisfied God’s justice and brought us …

• New Life. Our spirit is made alive in Christ the moment we acknowledge that we are sinners, turn from our rebelliousness, and believe that His death paid for our sin debt in full.

• Freedom. At salvation, sin’s power over us is broken, and we are set free from its hold. Jesus raised us from the pit of disobedience, and now we can exercise our newfound freedom and follow Him.

• Security. When we accept our Savior’s sacrifice as payment for our sins, we are permanently adopted into the heavenly Father’s family. Our status changes instantly: Once objects of wrath, we are now children of God. And someday we will be seated in the heavenly realms with Christ to enjoy life everlasting.

God, the very one against whom we rebelled, substituted His Son Jesus to receive the punishment that was rightfully ours. How will you show your gratitude to the Father for His saving grace?

By InTouch UK

Wednesday 14th July 2021


Saul’s violent persecution of the church in Jerusalem, after the death of Stephen, only served to scatter the disciples into the surrounding areas, preaching the gospel as they went. Philip had gone up to Samaria, where many believed in Jesus, as he preached the gospel with powerful accompanying signs of healing and deliverance. There was much joy in that city as the Holy Spirit was poured out on the new believers. Yet, in the midst of this revival, the angel of the Lord came to Philip and instructed him to leave it all and go down to the desert road which descends from Jerusalem to Gaza.

We aren’t told that Philip was given a reason for being sent away from the revival ignited by his preaching. He seems to have simply obeyed. It was only when he arrived on that desert road, and saw the Ethiopian eunuch on his chariot, that he heard the Spirit tell him to go up and join him. The eunuch was an important official of the court of Candace, Queen of the Ethiopians, and had travelled up to Jerusalem to worship. He was returning with a scroll of the prophet Isaiah and was reading the words of Isaiah 53. As he read aloud from the scroll, he wondered whom the prophet’s words were describing. Philip called out to him, and then, climbing up to sit with him in the chariot, led him to a personal relationship with Jesus, the Messiah of Isaiah’s prophecy.

When Gemma and I moved to the east of England from our home in Lancashire, over two years ago, to be nearer my elderly parents, it felt a bit like coming to a desert place after the blessing of being involved at Ellel Grange. We came to our new home with a burden to reach out to some of the marginalised people in the town where we now live. Although we have got to know and share the gospel with a few people, we haven’t seen anyone’s life dramatically changed yet. One person that we have got to know, a man battling with an addiction, has shown a genuine desire to know God, but he hasn’t come through yet to truly know Him.

As I was this writing this Seed, I felt the Lord remind me of how that man has often said to me, “Dean, I don’t understand the Bible. I need someone to explain it to me”. I suddenly realised that his words were the same as those spoken by the Ethiopian eunuch to Philip, all those centuries ago. I had seen this place where we live as hard, and as a desert place. But the Lord was lovingly showing me that, even if we have come to this town for that one lost man, it will be worth it.

Perhaps there’s someone reading this Seed today and you feel as if the Lord has led you to a desert place. Be encouraged. God specialises in making even deserts bloom.

Prayer: Lord Jesus, here I am, available to You in all my weakness. Use me where You have placed me for Your glory. Amen.

By Seeds Of The Kingdom

Tuesday 13th July 2021

Never settle for second best

Half a lifetime ago our youngest child had left home to go to university and we had a new freedom. My life was happy and fulfilled. I had no thought of change, until my husband became convinced that God was calling him into a new direction. This would mean giving up the security of our satisfying careers and moving to another part of the country. This didn’t fit in with my current plans, and initially I didn’t have a sense of the call of God. However, God dealt graciously with me and showed me that His purposes are always better than my plans. Together David and I moved into an unanticipated and fruitful future.

In general, the world’s attitude to life is having the freedom to live your life as you please and getting what you want for self-fulfilment. God’s way is pursuing what you were created for – this is life in all its fullness. Have you ever thought that God has a planned purpose for each of His children which is not guaranteed to fit in with our plans? ‘Many are the plans of a man’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails’ (Proverbs 9:21). God’s purpose is God’s best, as examples in Scripture teach us.

Abraham settled for second best because he doubted God’s word (Genesis 16:1-4). Childlessness had been a great sorrow to Abraham and his wife, Sarah. When Sarah was well past child-bearing age, God made a covenant with Abraham that a son coming from his own body would be his heir, and his offspring would be as countless as the stars. A covenant is God’s unbreakable promise. This was renewed when Abraham and Sarah were ninety and eighty years of age respectively. What God had promised was humanly impossible and, to add to this, there was a long waiting time between the promise and its fulfilment. Consequently, Abraham and his wife, Sarah, took the matter into their own hands and Ishmael was born to Sarah’s maid. They doubted God’s promise. They couldn’t wait for God’s best and settled for a plan they themselves devised. Had they not settled for second best a lot of unhappiness would have been avoided. However, God fulfilled His promise and Isaac was born when Abraham was a hundred and Sarah was ninety years of age. Little wonder they both laughed at the prospect!

A waiting time is not easy, but it is a preparation time for God’s best to be fulfilled in our lives. If we doubt God, like Abraham, we could be tempted to choose second best and may look back on our lives with regret. God’s purpose for our lives is always tied into His Kingdom purposes for a lost world.

King Saul settled for second best when he was overcome with fear (1 Kings 13). In the middle of a war with the Philistines he had been instructed to wait at a certain place for the prophet, Samuel, to join him to make a burnt offering to the Lord before resuming the battle. When Samuel was late in arriving and Saul and his troops were trembling with fear, he felt compelled to make the offering himself – something a king was forbidden to do. His second best choice, driven by fear, was an act of rebellion against God

One of the most difficult times to trust God is when fear grips our heart. Fear is a thief of faith and confidence, causing us to settle for something that seems to ease the present situation. This is always second best.

Martha settled for second best because she was too busy serving (Luke 19:38-41). Jesus was invited to the home of Martha and Mary. Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She became frustrated with her sister, Mary, who ‘sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what He said’. Martha resented Mary who had left her to do the work alone. She even commanded Jesus to tell Mary to help her. Jesus wasn’t concerned about all that Martha was worried and upset about. He pointed out that what Mary chose was the one thing that really mattered and nothing could take it from her.

We should all be using the gifts God has given us to serve in the Body of Christ. However, it is possible to settle for second best by being too busy. We can put service before intimacy with Jesus. Our lives can be so full, wrongly focussed, or overtaken with worry about lesser things, that we never come to the place of inner stillness where, like Mary, we spend time at the feet of Jesus, listening to what He is saying.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, I lay my life before You today. Thank You that You have a perfect plan and purpose for me. I ask that, by the Holy Spirit, You will show me areas of my life where I have settled for second best because I have doubted You, been overtaken by fear or chosen busy service as a priority, instead of intimacy with Jesus. May I live today with the joy of knowing that I am Your child and filled with the Holy Spirit for the glory of Jesus. Amen.

By Seeds Of The Kingdom


Wednesday 8th July 2021


Jeremiah seemed to be having a very bad day at the office in this passage. What is precious to note is that the Lord doesn’t get angry with Jeremiah. He listens to him, then gives him a solution in order to move forward. Jeremiah got bogged down by the attitudes and words of people round about him and the same can happen us at times. Critical and condemning words can wear us down. How did Jeremiah get out of his pit, and change his bad day to a good day at the office? Let’s see what advice the Lord gave him in Jeremiah 15:19.

This is how the LORD responds: “If you return to me, I will restore you so you can continue to serve me. If you speak good words rather than worthless ones, you will be my spokesman. You must influence them; (the people round about you) do not let them influence you!”

The Lord tells Jeremiah to speak good and worthy words rather than worthless ones, words which would breathe life into his situation rather than discouragement. And this is a good piece of advice worth implementing both in our own lives and also when relating to others.

Our precious heavenly Daddy does not get angry with us in our struggles. He wants to help us through. But what if we feel He is the one who has disappointed us, and we back away from Him in disappointment? What happens when our situation is ongoing for a long period of time? Our struggle can be from relentless pressure at home or at work, which can wear us down. It can be personal illness or someone close to us having a major crisis, or it could perhaps be as a result of a broken heart, which can drain our energy big time.

Loss of any description can be a pain-filled path which we need to walk through, talk through and cry through. God wants to walk with us through the valley of Achor (meaning trouble) and make it into a door of hope. ‘I will … speak tenderly to her there. I will … transform the Valley of Trouble (Achor) into a gateway of hope’. He wants us to talk to Him and tell Him exactly how we feel, about ourselves, our circumstances, simply pouring out our hearts to Him. He can help rebuild our trust if it’s been broken and bring hope where there has been pain, speaking tenderly to us and transforming our valley into a place of hope.

Prayer: Dear Lord, thank You for the truth of Your word. Thank You that You want to bring hope to my situation and assure me of Your fatherly care. I surrender my expectations to You, and say “Let your will be done, not mine”, and ask You to be Lord over every circumstance in my life. Help me to encourage others when they are struggling and help me to speak Your words of life into every situation I encounter. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
By Seeds Of The Kingdom



Tuesday 6th July 2021


We have probably all experienced unanswered prayers and disappointments along life’s path at some stage or other. How we deal with the pain can be very different. Some people find solace in comfort eating, some in alcohol, some pornography, and others in burying themselves in their work or hobbies. None of these, however, heal our hearts. God has the perfect antidote, which we will look at closer in His word. Relevant verses can be found in psalms penned by King David, who had by all accounts more than just one ‘bad day at the office’!

Psalm 120:1 (NLT) says, ‘I took my troubles to the LORD; I cried out to him, and he answered my prayer.’ Other versions say, ‘In my distress, I called to the Lord’. David took his troubles to the Lord, cried out and was answered. And we see the same pattern in the next psalm, which describes the Lord hearing David’s cry. ‘But in my distress I cried out to the LORD; yes, I prayed to my God for help. He heard me from his sanctuary; my cry to him reached his ears’ (Psalm 18:6).

What do we do, though, when we cry out but feel our prayers have hit the ceiling, or that God hasn’t heard and isn’t answering? I remember the Lord impressing on my heart a call to missions, while I was playing a joke with the world map. As I didn’t realise at the time that God would use a joke to speak to me, I brushed it off! Over the next three weeks, my prayer life was struggling and in frustration I cried out to the Lord and said, “My prayers feel like they are bouncing off the ceiling, what’s going on?” In that moment I heard His still whisper into my heart, “You’re being like Jonah”. Immediately I knew that I needed to submit to the missionary call I’d sensed Him put in my heart. And when I did, His peace flooded my heart.

Obedience can be a key to breakthrough. Sometimes, though, we just need to place the timing of things into His hands, still believing He will intervene and answer. Other times, we need to grieve dreams and hopes that haven’t been fulfilled and make a choice to trust God with that pain – knowing His promise says He brings all things together for the good of those who love Him, and who are called according to His purposes. All things include the good, the bad and the ugly in our lives.

Maybe you are reading this and feeling that every day is a bad day in the office for you at present, without any sign of the struggle abating. God knows, and in Part 2, I will look at more encouragement in Scripture.

Prayer: Dear Lord, I place all my unanswered prayers and disappointments into Your hands. Thank You that You promise to bring all things together for the good of those who love You. Help me to trust You with my struggles and disappointments. I give them to You, In Jesus’ name. Amen.

By Seeds Of The Kingdom


Friday 2nd July 2021


It was early in the morning when he took up his usual place just outside the city gate. He was always there with the others, listening to the world hustling and bustling along. Lots of people came that way as they were leaving Jericho, and that’s why he sat there. You need lots of people passing by if you are begging as a way of life. He had just settled when he heard a commotion; a thunder of many feet, a crowd coming towards the gate. He strained his ears, “It’s Jesus of Nazareth”, he heard someone say.

He knew about Jesus, although he was well aware you can’t believe everything you hear in Jericho, but somehow the stories had really impacted him. It seemed to this blind beggar that Jesus was someone extra special. In fact, he’d concluded that, if Jesus could do such amazing miracles, He must be more than special. He must be the promised Redeemer, the Son of David. There and then he decided this was his chance, maybe his only chance, to change his life by claiming his very own miracle. He just had to wait until Jesus was near enough to hear him over the clamour of the crowd. Could he get Jesus’ attention if he shouted loud enough?

Maybe today you feel as Bartimaeus did that morning. Your day started like any other, with the same problems and issues which have persistently governed your lifestyle. After all it’s just another day, isn’t it? For Bartimaeus the issues were his blindness and the need to beg. That was what he knew, and that was his life. The issues will be different for each one of us.

But Bartimaeus’ heart was longing for something different. He wanted change. He knew about God’s promised Messiah, and he’d decided Jesus was the Messiah. He’d heard the stories of miracles, but now he realised this was his opportunity. It meant taking a leap of faith, risking looking foolish in front of a crowd, or even being disappointed, if he couldn’t make Jesus hear him, but he was determined. What did he have to lose? He certainly had much to gain.

I think we can learn some important lessons from Bartimaeus. Today may seem ordinary, a day in which to live our normal lives, but it is a day of possibilities if we have faith. Bartimaeus had faith, but he had to wait for Jesus to come his way. For us, today, Jesus is always near, by his Holy Spirit, so that means today is a day of great potential. It could be life changing. Like Bartimaeus, we have heard about Jesus and the stories of His miracles, but Bartimaeus knew that knowledge wasn’t enough. We must decide, as Bartimaeus did, if Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God. If He is, then we can call out in faith to Him, and He will hear us. But we must also walk a path of faith. Bartimaeus wasn’t healed immediately. Jesus called for him to come closer and so Bartimaeus got up and started forward. He had to keep walking until he got close to Jesus and then Jesus asked him, “What do you want me to do for you?”

So, today if you need something to change in your life, you can call out to Jesus. He is near you. You could do it silently, but why not call out loud just as Bartimaeus did? We can be assured of Jesus’ attention, as we declare our faith in Him, the Son of David, our Redeemer and Saviour, our Healer and Comforter. Jesus called for Bartimaeus to get up and come closer, and He says the same to us. I wonder how long that walk was for Bartimaeus. He was still blind, but he kept going forward, because he believed he would be healed. We need to do the same, to walk towards Jesus in faith and tell Him, in honesty, our deepest need, as He asks us “What do you want Me to do for you?”. In this close encounter we must be ready and open to receive His healing touch, as Bartimaeus did, with life-changing consequences.

Prayer: Father God, thank You for the Scriptures, which tell me of the coming of Your precious Son, Jesus, and of His miraculous power to heal and restore, whilst He was walking this earth. Jesus, thank You that You have not left me alone, but have sent the Holy Spirit to live with me, and in me, so that You are always near and ready to hear me when I call out to You. Give me courage to dare to believe that You will hear and respond to my cry for mercy. As I journey closer to You, give me confidence to open myself to receive Your healing touch. I ask it in Jesus’ name. Amen.

By Seeds Of The Kingdom


Wednesday 30th June 2021


Forgiving other people is one of the hardest, but most essential, things we are told to do. We are the only ones who bear the consequences if we fail to do so. The circumstances which have caused the hurt done to us by others are many and varied. To delay forgiving another person can merely prolong our emotional pain and damage our mental health. The time to forgive is right now, not when I have told other family members or friends about the incident, not when I’ve spent a few days wallowing in self-pity re-rehearsing the event in my mind, not when the incident has been posted on social media and not when I have sought revenge in some way. My dad’s motto was “Give them a taste of their own medicine”, and this became my way of responding as a youngster. But I know now, as a Christian, this is not how Jesus tells us to respond. The Bible says, ‘Do not repay anyone evil for evil’ (Romans 12:17).

The truth is we probably never will truly forgive if we wait until we feel like doing it. Forgiveness is an act of the will, and if we are willing, God will help us. God understands our hurt and pain more than anyone else does and He loves our honesty. If we are struggling, He is more than willing to help us to forgive those who trespass against us. All we need to do is ask Him.

I`m just thinking of the words to the hymn, ‘What a friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and griefs to bear, what a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer’. This doesn’t mean it’s always a ‘quick fix’. Sometimes the emotional pain or abuse involved does take time to heal.

Sometimes at the root of unforgiveness is anger. Anger in itself is not wrong, but how a person deals with it often is. That’s when it becomes sinful. Anger is not always caused by another person. It can be adverse circumstances in life which cause anger to arise in us. Whom do we blame when another person has not been involved? It is often God who becomes the one we blame, either consciously or subconsciously. Of course, any anger toward God is completely unjustified.

It may be the loss of a much-loved spouse or other family member to illness or accident where we wrongly blame God. But even a much less serious situation can result in blame being aimed at God. Here is an example. The summer holiday by the seaside that has been planned for months and has caused great excitement turns out to be a ‘wash out’ with rain coming down like stair rods for the entire week, accompanied by cold winds resembling November weather. Yet the weeks preceding the holiday were days of blue cloudless skies, wall to wall sunshine, and sunscreen factor 50 weather, and these returned immediately after the holiday ended.

Equally important is the ability to be able to forgive ourselves when we sin against our Heavenly Father, or we fail to reach the unreasonably high standards we sometimes set up for ourselves. Once we have sincerely confessed our sin to God, we can rest assured we have been truly forgiven and our slate has been wiped clean, and the record of the sin has been erased.

Sometimes it’s even harder to forgive ourselves than it is to forgive someone else, but here again God is more than willing to enable us to do so. Failure to forgive self is actually sinful because we are continuing to hold in contempt a person whom God has already forgiven.

God`s ways are always perfect. He loves each one of us so much He sent Jesus to pay for all ours sins by His death on the cross. ‘For God so loved the world that He gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life’ (John 3:16).

That is indeed a cause for rejoicing and great thankfulness whatever the circumstances (or the weather).

Prayer: I come to You Lord and acknowledge, that at times I do harbour unforgiveness, bitterness and resentment towards other people and myself included. Please forgive me for this. Right now I forgive all who have caused me physical or emotional pain to whatever degree. Please forgive me for times I have wrongly blamed You when things fail to happen just as I want them to. I praise and thank You for Your amazing love and ever-present help in my life. Amen.

By Seeds Of The Kingdom


Don’t Hide Your Scars

I have to admit that if I hear someone teaching about enduring hardship or suffering or dealing with anger or rejection, I sometimes long to hear them share something of their own personal experience of how the Lord helped them overcome these or similar issues. It helps me to know that, however good a speaker they are, they’re not just speaking from head knowledge, but have experienced the truth they are teaching.

If I heard a married man preaching from the pulpit that he and his wife had never had a disagreement in their decades of marriage, I wouldn’t want to go to him to share any struggles I might be having in my marriage. Before I take the risk of baring my wounds to someone, it helps me to know that they too have scars where they were once wounded, scars that speak hope to me that the God who brought them through will do the same for me.

For quite a while in my early Christian journey I was always trying to find another Christian to hear my frequent struggles and pray with me. Somehow I thought their prayers were more effective than mine. Looking back though, I realise that there were many times when the Lord arranged for there to be no-one available to pray with me, because He wanted me to know that He was right there with me, always ready to listen and help me.

Jesus truly is the One who understands our every weakness and problem perfectly, because He has experienced fully what it is to be human and live in our broken world. He never sinned, but He knows what it is like to be rejected, misunderstood, judged, mocked and ultimately to die as an innocent sacrifice in the place of us all on the cross. He carried His scars back to heaven, where He reigns now at the right hand of the Father, interceding for us. Just as He invited Thomas to see those scars after His resurrection, He invites us now to behold them by faith, and to see how they show His complete understanding of our humanity, so He can speak forgiveness and healing to our wounded hearts.

I have always loved some words from the song, ‘I am loved’ by Bill and Gloria Gaither: ‘I said, “if You knew, You wouldn’t want me. My scars are hidden by the face I wear”. He said, “My child, My scars go deeper. It was love for you that put them there”.

Prayer: Lord Jesus, I choose to no longer hide my wounds in shame. As I come to You to be healed, may any scars that remain in my life from those wounds testify to others of Your grace, which also reaches out to them. Amen.

By Seeds Of The Kingdom

Friday 25th June 2021

Where to find spiritual healing

Countless holistic therapies claim to bring healing to the body, mind and spirit. In their promotion, an extraordinary array of words and phrases are used to encourage us to believe in the efficacy of the treatments. I can apparently have ‘my energy centres realigned where they have fallen out of harmony’, I can find ‘a new attunement to my spirit’, I can experience ‘restoration of my harmonic resonance’, I can be helped ‘to connect with something larger than myself’, I can have ‘my spiritual pathways unblocked’, and I can connect with ‘nature’s living energy’.

At best, most of the phrases used are just meaningless but, at worst, they are highly deceptive, based not on any science but on a miscellany of beliefs concerning unquantifiable energies and forces apparently existing in and around us. The Word of God takes a completely different approach to spiritual repair. Jesus certainly agrees that we are all in need of healing, but His answer is for us to acknowledge His Kingship in our lives: “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven” (Matthew 5:3).

Having researched over many years the alternative therapies that offer spiritual restoration, I have not found one that says that human sin is the cause of spiritual damage. Not one suggests that our confession and repentance are the starting places for healing, and not one says that God’s forgiveness is the true solution to our spiritual needs. In the quest for spiritual wellbeing, it seems that the world is very willing to be drawn down any pathway, apart from that which follows the One who has declared Himself to be ‘the way, the truth and the life’.

Prayer: Father God, I ask that I might have increasing discernment to avoid the seductive traps of the enemy, especially when feeling a bit desperate for a healing touch deep within my life. I choose to believe that Jesus alone provides the answer to spiritual needs, through His saving work on the cross. Amen.

By Seeds Of The Kingdom


Thursday 24th June 2021

Lightening The Load

When my husband and I moved to Hungary over eighteen years ago, we thought we were going for just one or two years, so we put a lot of items in storage. When God showed us that we were to stay longer, every time we visited Alaska, we would get rid of more stuff, until we just had one cargo trailer full of stuff left.

This past month we finally got back to Alaska to sort through the rest of the items. As we threw things away, gave things away, and sold a few things, it was such a good feeling! It reminded me of our scripture for today, which says, to ‘strip off every weight that holds us down.’ We often don’t realise what we are holding on to which weighs us down. It can be possessions or ungodly habits or behaviours. We get very comfortable holding on to them. It can seem easier to just leave them alone rather than to address them and get rid of things. However, as we begin to face things with God and get rid of the unnecessary things, we start to realise how much it was really weighing us down and how much freer we feel when we have released these things.

I encourage you today to ask the Holy Spirit to help you look at your life and that He would reveal anything that is weighing you down. The following prayer could be a start of this conversation with God.

Prayer: Holy Spirit, please show me anything that I have in my life that is weighing me down and keeping me from running my race to the best of my ability. I choose to release these things as You reveal them to me. Amen.

By Seeds Of The Kingdom


Wednesday 23rd June 2021


Are you feeling as if every day is just the same? Maybe you have the same routines every day and you wonder if things will ever be different. It can happen to us all at times. You could say that Joseph, Moses and David were living humdrum lives until God’s calling and destiny for their lives was revealed.

Joseph was his father’s favourite son, and his brothers hated him. One day his father sent him out to his brothers, and they seized him and threw him in a pit, then sold him to some passing traders who were on their way to Egypt. He was sold as a slave but did so well in his work that he was promoted to overseer in his master’s house. All went well for a while, until Potipher’s wife falsely accused him of assaulting her, and then he was imprisoned. But he did so well in the prison that the manager set him over the other prisoners.

His days then were much the same, but he was faithful in what he did, and somehow, the Lord encouraged him. Pharaoh’s baker and butler both had dreams which Joseph interpreted. They were fulfilled when the baker was executed and the butler released. The butler forgot all about Joseph, and Joseph carried on the same as usual. But one day, all was changed. You can read the full story in Genesis 41, as Joseph was promoted from prison to Prime Minister of Egypt.

In Exodus 3 we read of Moses. He was in the wilderness keeping his father-in-law’s sheep. He had been there forty years, after fleeing from Egypt because he had murdered an Egyptian slave master and thought he was helping his own people. He certainly had time to get to know the wilderness, tramping around it every day, looking for food for the sheep. Then one day he encountered a burning bush, and he met with the Lord God, who called him to go back to Egypt and rescue His people from slavery and bring them into the Promised Land.

David was the youngest in the family, and was despised by his brothers, who treated him like the family skivvy. When Samuel visited his home and was told to anoint one of Jesse’s sons, David was out with the sheep, not considered equal to his brothers. He was faithful in looking after the sheep, but the day came when all that changed. He was sent for, and Samuel anointed him in the presence of his brothers! However, he waited a long time for His anointing to be fulfilled. His story is in 1 Samuel 16:1-13.

I am encouraged that, although these three great figures from the Old Testament seem to have had times in their lives which you could describe as humdrum, God ultimately had a plan and purpose for their lives. God used these periods of routine existence to prepare them to fulfil their destiny.

Prayer: Lord, sometimes I find it really hard when every day seems just the same, and there doesn’t seem any change on the horizon. I thank You for the stories of Joseph, Moses and David, who were faithful to You in the ordinary things. Help me to be motivated and inspired to walk daily with You. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.

By Gemma Gardener (Seeds Of The Kingdom)


Wednesday 5th May 2021


Years ago, we were walking in the French Alps. We had a guidebook and a map. The book described a climb that would take us up a beautiful valley and over a series of ridges to a spectacular viewpoint. We like spectacular viewpoints, so we agreed it would be worth the effort. We had to be careful to follow the route. The series of ridges was hard work. You get ‘false cols’: the ridge in front looks like the top, but when you get there, after a short dip, you have to go up again – and again! But when we got to the one that really was the top – WOW! We had a grandstand view of the three largest glaciers in the Alps. Unforgettable!

I was reminded of that when I read this verse from Psalm 119. God’s laws show us the way He wants us to go: His route. Go astray from that, and you won’t reach the destination. Like our climb that day, it’s not always easy. Sometimes you think you’ve arrived, only to find it’s a false col. And there can be unexpected dangers. But as you go, you’ll discover amazing things, God’s ‘wonders’: miracles of creation and miracles of provision.

Don’t ignore little miracles: Three people meeting to pray, all coming with the same bible verse to set the theme; a chance meeting that starts a life-changing chain of events. Things like that are ‘wonders’ just as much as a dramatic physical healing.
Or God’s faithful provision, meeting every daily need. It could be the wonders of Creation, like the amazing valley and the glaciers. Or just the first butterfly of spring. But if you’re not following God’s route, you’ll miss so much.

David asked God to help him to discern the way. On our walks in foreign countries, we sometimes needed help to find the way – waymarks aren’t always that clear, and you can miss a landmark that’s on the map. David had God’s precepts, His guidebook; but he still needed His help to discern the way. Even if it’s hard at times, when you stick to the path, it will be safe, and you’ll see wonders as you go.

Our alpine walk ended with a spectacular view. But we saw so many smaller things before we got there. Smaller, maybe, but just as amazing. All of them things to remember; or, as David says, to meditate on. As I reflect on that gorgeous walk all those years ago, I’m amazed all over again at how great God is.

Prayer: Father, You’re wonderful! I’m amazed at all You do and at all Your faithful provision. Please help me to discern the way You want me to go today, and open my eyes to see Your wonders, the little ones as much as the big ones. Amen.

By Richard Griffiths (Seeds Of The Kingdom)

Tuesday 4th May 2021

the highest place

We once had a group of Jehovah Witnesses come into our home to discuss the Christian faith and look at Scripture. They have many of their own interpretations of the Bible, but what they believe is not truly in line with what it says. An important difference we had with them was over who Jesus is. After they had gone, I prepared some scriptures which clearly show that Jesus is God for the next time they came back. But they didn’t come back again. The disciples of Jesus came to understand that Jesus was God and one of the clearest statements came from Thomas. He was privileged to see the risen Lord Jesus. Jesus invited him to see His hands which had been pierced by the nails and put his hand into His side, which had been pierced with a spear from a Roman soldier. He immediately confessed Jesus as Lord and God. ‘Thomas said to Him, “My Lord and my God’ (John 20:28). Jesus said that Thomas now believed the truth because he had seen the evidence for himself, but all those who would come to believe without seeing Jesus physically would be blessed. That means you and me. We are blessed.

We can bow the knee and acknowledge (confess) Jesus is Lord. He is the mighty King of the universe, the supreme authority figure, yet He is loving, kind and gentle. Therefore, we can safely trust Him with our entire lives. I love the words in a verse from the old hymn ‘At the name of Jesus’. ‘In your hearts enthrone Him; there let Him subdue all that is not holy, all that is not true. Crown Him as your captain in temptation’s hour; let His will enfold you in its light and power’.

Giving Jesus the highest place in our lives means we will always try to do our best to please Him and obey His will. Thomas called Him ‘my Lord’ and that means being in a close personal relationship. At the last supper, during Passover, Jesus shocked Peter by washing the feet of His disciples. Jesus explained Peter needed to accept having his feet washed or he would not belong to Jesus. He wouldn’t be in close relationship with Him.

It was to be a most powerful lesson for them all. They would now understand that a leader in God’s Kingdom needs to be a humble servant. ‘When he had finished washing their feet, he put on his clothes and returned to his place. ‘Do you understand what I have done for you?’ he asked them. ‘You call me “Teacher” and “Lord”, and rightly so, for that is what I am. Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you”’ (John 13:12-15). The reason God exalted Jesus to the highest place was that Jesus humbled

Himself by ‘becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross’ (Philippians 2:8). He sacrificed His life on the cross for us all that we could find salvation and forgiveness of our sins, and that we could have eternal life with God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit.

Prayer: Lord Jesus, I want to bow my knee to You and acknowledge You as my Lord and my King. I want You to be Lord of my whole life, of my spirit, soul and body, of how I worship You, of all my thoughts, all my emotions and how I express them, the choices I make each day, all my relationships, my time, my money and material possessions. I choose to place into Your hands my fears and anxieties and trust You will always be with me, whatever happens and wherever I go. Please wash me and make me clean in Your eyes. Amen.

By Liz Griffin (Seeds Of The Kingdom)

Tuesday 27th April 2021


In the days before CDs “His Masters Voice” used to be a record label. The logo was a little dog sitting in front of an early record playing machine – one with a big horn. The idea was the little dog couldn’t be with his master, but he could be comforted by the sound of his master’s voice. Today it is a large shop using the initials.

Do you know the master’s voice? Some people are so damaged by life that they only hear our Lord, our Master, saying bad and condemning things. This is a lie of the enemy. Our Lord will convict us of sin, but He never condemns us. When you think you hear how bad you are – does it line up with Scripture? Is this the good, good Father we sing about? A good father disciplines. We need to respond by repenting when he does. In response there is an amazing scripture which says He chooses to remember our sin no more.

‘“Come now, let us settle the matter,” says the LORD. “Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool”’ (Isaiah 1:18).

‘No longer will they teach their neighbour, or say to one another, “Know the LORD,” because they will all know me, from the least of them to the greatest,” declares the LORD. “For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more”’ (Jeremiah 31:34).

I used to ponder on how God can choose to remember my sin no more. I can see it. I can hear it. I know about it, and often a lot of other people know about it too.

As a parent, I understand it is a choice we make. We take all the emotion out of it. This is how it works when you are a parent. “I love you. I understand you did that. I’m proud of the way you had the courage to own up that you did it (even though I knew all along you did it). I am pleased you didn’t lie to get out of it. Because you have come to me, I choose not just to forgive you. There may be repercussions. For example, you may have to pay for the item you broke, but I chose to not remember what you did as we move forward.”

I am by no means a perfect parent. I did my best and I made mistakes, but I did try hard to do this. Father does not want us to have a nasty voice in our head telling us we will fail before we even start – or whatever the enemy is saying.

You can do it. You may fail. But come back each time to Father. Check your direction. Are you walking in the direction He wants you to, or are you straying off the path? Are you still walking in His will, or is His voice fading as you drift further away? Are you walking the way He wants you to, in His will, but you have just made a mistake? Come to Him in repentance of the sin you have committed. And remember you need to forgive yourself.

You have been chosen by the King of kings who does not make mistakes, and He loves you. He sent His son to stretch out His arms on the cross and say, “I love you”. You are one of the sheep He knows by name.

Prayer: Loving Father, help me to see myself as You see me and not to listen to the enemy. Help me to forgive myself, and Father, help me to listen to You more clearly each day. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

By Vivienne Hill (Seeds Of The Kingdom)

Wednesday 7th Mar 2021


These verses of Scripture are the beginnings of what is known as the Shema, which is Hebrew for “Hear”. It has become known as the Jewish confession of faith and is recited every day by pious Jews and every Sabbath day in the synagogue. It is a reminder that there is one God, the God who created all things. That must have been a great relief to the Jews at the time it was first recorded. Unlike the nations that surrounded them, they didn’t have to worry about keeping a multiplicity of different gods happy. They only had to concentrate on the one true God.

In our day too there are multiple voices calling for our attention. Every time we watch TV or use social media there are competing voices calling for us to buy this product or use this service. Each voice promises that our lives will be better if we simply trust their voice. Funny then how discontented so many of us feel even after we’ve acted on these voices!

But the Shema reminds us that a better way to live our lives is to focus on just one voice, the voice of the LORD our God. He doesn’t ask us to buy this or that, rather He simply asks one thing of us: that we love Him. God’s love is not one that demands we do anything for Him, save one, that we love Him. And that love is to be with our whole being: our heart, our soul, and our strength.

But why should we love Him, we might ask? Because, the bible tells us, He first loved us! In Jesus the one true God is fully made known to us. Jesus came to fully reveal God to us. And in his death on the cross the fullness of God’s love for us is made known for all to see. On the cross it was as if Jesus stretched wide His arms and invited any who’d believe to receive His love for them. Jesus couldn’t have made His love for us any clearer. The Shema invites us to accept that love and give him ours in return – in every aspect of our being.

Maybe that simple, daily repetition of this phrase would help us hear the only voice that really counts: ‘Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength’.

Prayer: Dear LORD God, thank You that You are the only true God, the maker of heaven and earth. Thank You that You so clearly demonstrated Your love for us when Jesus gave Himself fully for us in His death upon the cross. Thank You, LORD Jesus, that You made that incredible sacrifice even for me. I offer You afresh this day my love in return, the love of my heart, my soul and my strength. Amen.

By John Sainsbury (Seeds Of The Kingdom)

Wednesday 17th Mar 2021


In our home, we take a day out each week to listen to teaching, to read our bibles and spend time with God. Recently, during some teaching, we heard something that has changed the way we think about the Sabbath. The question was asked, “What is the Sabbath for?” Jesus said the Sabbath was made for us. So, if God made the Sabbath for us, what is the day for?

I have to admit that all my Christian life, I have tended to look at life through the lens of ‘my experience’. I thought that God must have worked so hard creating the universe in those six days (however long those ‘days’ were) that on the seventh day He sank into His throne with a nice cuppa and relaxed. After the teaching we listened to, I realised that God is not like a human being and He does not need rest like us.

Now let’s forget my thinking and change the scenario to the reality. God made and prepared the world to be a beautiful place. He made us … Stop right there and ask, “But why did He make us?”

I find the answer in the second part of Zephaniah 3:17, ‘He will take great delight in you; in his love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing.’ It was because He wanted us! He didn’t need us, but He wanted us.

Imagine, if you will, two different parents preparing for their child’s birthday. One is very organised, taking time and care so that everything is in place – venue, invitations, cake, entertainer, hats and food. On the day of the party, that parent is able to fully enjoy the day with their child.

Now the other parent doesn’t actually do anything until the week before, so then has to spend a huge amount of time phoning, texting and emailing to get everything in place at the last minute. When the day of the party arrives, this parent is exhausted, and the child is fractious. It is supposed to be their special day, but Mum or Dad have been ignoring them all week and now are too tired to enjoy the party.

Part of me had always imagined that was God busy, then exhausted. I realise I was ‘humanising’ God. He is not human. We are made in His image, not Him in ours. God spent time carefully creating a beautiful balanced environment. Imagine if He’d created us first? That would have been too scary for us. No, when the environment was fully in place and He was happy with it, He created us.

Then He created that seventh day so that we could spend time with Him. He wanted us. He loves us. He rejoices over us with singing. It’s not about what we do on that day. It’s about how we spend it. He just wants to spend the day with each one of us. How marvellous is that?

Prayer: Father, I thank You that You made me because You wanted me, and that You want me to spend time with You. Help me to set aside time in my life to stop being busy doing things and to relate to You, and listen to You rejoicing over me with singing. In Your precious Son’s name. Amen.By Grace Bull (Seeds Of The Kingdom)

By Vivienne Hill (Seed Of The Kingdom)

Tuesday 9th Mar 2021

A Way out

I was reading this verse when it struck me that you can read it in two ways. Paul is writing to Timothy and saying that the Lord would rescue him from the evil deeds of others. But it struck me that the meaning is equally true the other way around. The Lord can and does rescue you and me from our own evil deed, or deeds, the ones we can’t forgive ourselves for, the ones that won’t go away from our thoughts, our conscience, our life.

The Lord freely forgives us when we repent, but maybe you are like me. I often struggle with self-blame. Do you find it hard to forgive yourself and to be free from anger, self-blame and even hating yourself? If so, why not meditate on this verse today.

Our loving and powerful Father can rescue you (and others) from your evil deeds and their negative consequences. Of course, He doesn’t magically remove the natural consequences of our actions, but He does specialise in bringing good out of every situation.

Perhaps because of His immense creativity, even in situations that seem impossible to us, He can find unique ways to turn everything to produce good. In fact, I suspect He gets huge joy out of doing just that! As Paul says in Romans 8:28, ‘And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.’

Prayer: Thank You, Lord, that You can (and will) rescue me from every evil deed, whether it was done by someone else and affected me, or whether I did it myself. Thank You that I don’t have to punish myself or rescue myself, but I can look to You for help today. Amen.

By Grace Bull (Seeds Of The Kingdom)

Monday 9th Mar 2021


Elijah went up the mountain to meet with God. ‘The Lord said, “Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the Lord, for the Lord is about to pass by.” Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. After the earthquake came a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper’ (1 Kings 19:11-12).

God speaks in the silence, when all is still. To hear His voice, we need to be in a quiet place, ‘Be still and know that I am God’ (Psalm 46:10).

In the beginning, ‘The Lord God formed man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being’ (Genesis 2:7). The word translated from the original Hebrew as ‘breath’ can also mean ‘spirit.’ God breathed part of Himself, His breath of life, His Spirit, into Adam. And it’s by the same Spirit that we too can recognise Him and know Him. He doesn’t speak to our ears, or even to our mind, but gently and quietly, into our spirit.

Jesus knew the value of being alone with the Father, in a quiet place where He could share His heart, with no distractions. ‘Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed’ (Mark 1:35).

We live in a world of relentless sound, invading every area of life. To find God we need to seek a quiet place, away from the clamour of the world, where we can talk to Him without distraction, and allow Him to talk to us. Samuel was lying on the floor of the temple, by the ark of the covenant, when he heard the voice of God. “Speak, he said, “for your servant is listening” (1 Samuel 3:10). And the Lord quietly revealed His plans to Samuel.

In the midst of all the turmoil and conflict of life, let’s find a peaceful corner, away from all godless chatter, where we can lay down our troubles and rest. ‘Be still and know that I am God’ (Psalm 46:10).

Let us remember the cross. Jesus died in our place, for our sins and with our sins, so that we could enjoy the fullness of life. ‘I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly’ (John 10:10). Allow Him to speak words of life into your spirit, as you receive with gratitude what is rightly yours. ’They who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up with wings like eagles. They shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint’ (Isaiah 40:31, ESV).

Prayer: Lord, Your death is my life. I draw aside from the world today, casting all my cares upon You, and resting on Your truth. You will never fail me. So often I have failed You. Forgive me, Lord. Help me to be aware of Your presence, and to know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom You have sent. In His name. Amen..

By Ron Scurfield (Seeds Of The Kingdom)

Friday 5th Mar 2021

Which way are you turning?

A church leader recently said that he wonders what his church congregation will look like when they are able to resume gathering together after the pandemic. Will people have stood firm in their faith, kept connected by what is offered online and reached out to care for others? Will some have become discouraged or discontented and turned away from the faith they once professed?

The pandemic has lasted a long time and we still have a way to go before we are free to make our own choices again. Instead of seeing this as a negative time, maybe we could look at it as a positive time when God is able to change our hearts, where they need to be changed, and prepare us for His future plans. His desire is always to draw us closer to Himself and sometimes this comes through testing and trials.

The warning about turning away from God is a thread through the Bible. The writer of our text for today was in earnest as he wrote to a church which was going through hard times and suffering persecution. He reminded them that, when Moses was a long time up the mountain in the presence of God, receiving the commandments, the Israelites turned from the living God, made an idol and worshipped it (Exodus 32). Idols are always replacements for the most precious thing we can ever have – intimate relationship with God.

Turning away from God is not always something that happens suddenly. But it always begins in the heart and is rooted in unbelief. This causes us to the reject or compromise the truth for a lie. ‘Compromise’ is an ‘in’ word, used to accommodate things that go directly against God’s word and God’s heart. Often before turning from God we can be drifting (Hebrews 2:1). The interesting thing about drifting away from God is that we drift and don’t recognise that we are drifting. The dangerous thing about drifting is that we can be carried along by a current into muddy waters, where we find ourselves going away from God, rather than being drawn to Him.

If Jesus is who He claims to be, we must listen to what He says, pay close attention to the truth in His word and absorb it in our hearts, so that we don’t eventually turn away from Him. There are usually recognisable signs of turning away from God. We find we have lost the sense of His love, joy and peace and have become indifferent to Him. Consequently we are no longer motivated by the things that matter most. It becomes easy to cover up, justify or rationalise sin, which needs to be dealt with at the cross, so that we can be restored to Him. When we’re turning away it’s easier to compromise our moral beliefs, because sin doesn’t trouble us as it did when we walked with Jesus.

Once we recognise the signs of turning away from the living God, through repentance, we can go in the opposite direction and turn towards Him. Repentance is a deep sorrow, which the Holy Spirit puts into our hearts. It turns us to the cross for cleansing, forgiveness and a new start from a renewed mind. However you’re feeling to-day, or whatever you may be struggling with, remember that Jesus is all that you need. So, don’t turn away from Him and look in the wrong places for your needs to be met. Turn towards Him and He will be gracious to welcome you back into His arms of love.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, I come to You today and ask You to examine my heart. Thank You for the grace of forgiveness and restoration through the cross. I’m sorry for the times I’ve turned from You. I now turn towards You and ask You to change and renew my heart. Please fill me afresh with Your Holy Spirit and enable me to live my life for the glory of Jesus and the extension of His kingdom. Amen.

By Margaret Silvester (Seeds Of The Kingdom)

Thursday 4th Mar 2021

CHanging the battleground

I recently watched a YouTube video about an eagle and a banded sea snake. This particular sea snake is highly poisonous, and one bite can kill a human being swimming or diving in their waters. The eagle recognises that it can’t fight the snake on its own terms or battleground, the sea. So, it snatches the snake from the water and takes it high into the sky. There, the snake has no power or balance in the air. It is useless, weak and vulnerable, as opposed to where it is powerful, wise and deadly. The snake may do everything it can to win the battle, but it is soon defeated.

An interesting story, you might think, but it is one that has a spiritual element to it as well. The enemy comes at us in different ways and he is very cunning. He wants to inject us with the poison of fear, shame, despair, depression, loneliness, rejection and much more, especially, in these difficult and challenging times. We each have to fight our own individual battles with the one who tempted Adam and Eve in the garden in the form of a serpent. His tactics haven’t changed that much since then.

Our mistake is that we try and fight our battles with the enemy of our souls on his terms and on his battleground. Instead, lets take a lesson from the eagle and move our battle into the spiritual realms, in prayer. In that heavenly battleground, invite God to join you and fight the enemy on His terms. Let God take charge, as you earnestly pray to Him for His help, His authority, and His power to defeat our mutual enemy.

Today you can change the battleground from the one which favours the enemy to the place of your victory in Christ. The heavenly realm where God reigns supreme. It is the place where you have God-given authority to stand and fight, clothed in the full armour of God. It is the place of your victory, and your enemy’s defeat!

Prayer: Dear Lord, please help me today to change the battleground I am fighting the enemy in. Help me move it to the heavenly realms where in You I am more than a conqueror. I am fed up with being bullied and beaten by the enemy on his terms. Right now, I am choosing to lift this into the prayer realms, where You will fight for me and I will gain the victory for Your glory. Amen.

By Phillip Asselin (Seeds Of The Kingdom)

Wednesday 3rd Mar 2021

Accepting the sinner but not the sin

The Samaritan woman who met Jesus at the well was surely not expecting any deep conversation, but she had the longest recorded theological dialogue with Him of any individual in the Gospels. And, what’s more, she discovered that He knew all about her somewhat imperfect personal life.

Why would He spend so much time with one of society’s undesirables? Even the disciples were amazed that He was talking in depth with this woman. It just wasn’t how religious leaders were supposed to behave. But Jesus hadn’t come to be religious, but to be a Saviour for everyone who was willing to listen to His teaching and acknowledge who He was. This Samaritan woman recognised that she was talking to the Jewish Messiah, and she literally dropped everything and returned to the city in order to tell everyone whom she had found.

In His discussion with her, Jesus didn’t gloss over her sinful lifestyle. He gave her opportunity to face the truth with Him about the men she had lived with. But what must have been extraordinary for her was that these facts didn’t affect His acceptance of her as a valued human being, worth spending time with, significant enough to hear deep Kingdom principles.

Today, we can forget just how radical Jesus was in His interaction with everyone. He wasn’t interested in promoting religious observance; His desire was to offer relationship. Just as it is today, some welcomed that relationship with open arms, and some found it far too threatening.

Prayer: Father, how amazing that You accept me and love me despite all the many imperfections of my life. Jesus demonstrated this so clearly, showing that He wanted relationship with all who were willing to come and face truth with Him. This is precious unconditional acceptance. Thank you. Amen.

By David Cross (Seeds Of The Kingdom)

Tuesday 2nd Mar 2021

The most encouraging verse in the bible

Do you like encouragement? I do! Encouragement is the precious spiritual oil which helps us through all the stages of life. Without encouragement children struggle to develop to their full potential. And we all know how much better we feel about ourselves when we have received genuine encouragement. So, read today’s verse several times and let its truth sink deep into your spirit. Jesus prays for YOU! There can be nothing more encouraging this side of Heaven but to know that Jesus Himself is praying to the Father for you.

Jesus was coming towards the end of His life. He knew what lay ahead of Him and He knew also that His disciples would be totally bereft when He had returned to Heaven. So Jesus prayed for them and verses 6 to 19 of John 17 is His amazing prayer for His disciples. But the next section of the chapter begins with the awesome words of our Scripture. He’s saying that He’s not only praying for His disciples, but that He’s also praying for everyone who will believe in Him, because of the message that the disciples will take into the world. And that includes every believer, for the whole of time, till Jesus comes again!

So, when you are going through tough times, remember that Jesus is praying for you. Jesus knows that we are living in a fallen world that is increasingly turning its back on the living God. To be a Christian in today’s world is to go against the spirit of the age and invites opposition and sometimes ridicule. It is no longer acceptable to allow your conduct in public life to be determined by what you believe. This is something Jesus knew all about and shortly after He prayed these prayers the public opposition to who He was would take Him to the cross to die for the sins of the world.

There can be no-one who knows better than Jesus how tough life can be. So, when the Scripture tells us that Jesus prays for us, we can know that those prayers really count for something. Whatever you are facing in life just now, be it tough times of opposition, sickness, temptation, bereavement or whatever, look up to Jesus and thank Him for His prayers and be encouraged and strengthened so that, with His help and by the power of the Holy Spirit, you will be able to press on in life, loving and serving the Lord until he calls you home to glory.

Prayer: Thank You, Jesus, for praying for me. I am so grateful that You care enough about me and my life to intercede for me to the Father. Strengthen me, I pray, to be able to press on with all You have called me to be and to do. Help me to resist temptation and stay on course till the day I meet You face to face. In Your Name, Amen.

By Peter Horrobin (Seeds Of The Kingdom)

Friday 26th Feb 2021

season of opportunity

The pandemic has brought the world to a halt. Whilst the crisis is terrible, and many are suffering, it also provides us with a unique opportunity. It is as if the pause button has been hit and we have time and space to reconsider our lives.

As Ecclesiastes says, there is a time for everything, and this might be the season in which the Lord wants to plant His goodness in our lives in a new way. Or it might be the season in which He wants to uproot any unhelpful elements within us. The world can only wait and hope that this difficult season ends quickly. For us, as God’s children, we can do more than that. We would do well to use this opportunity to seek the Lord and see how He may speak to us at this time.

What kind of things might God want to build or plant in you during this season? Might it be a deeper knowledge of Him? Might it be new patterns for life. Do we need a recalibration of our priorities, or to grow in our desire and love for the Lord Jesus and our longing for His return? And what might He want to uproot? Perhaps it is deep, unchallenged beliefs which sit as fault lines in our foundations. Or maybe it is unhelpful, unhealthy, or even sinful, patterns of thinking and behaviour.

Whatever is on God’s agenda for you personally, I believe that God desires to bring all of us closer to His own heart. This will result in a deeper experience of rest, despite the circumstances. It will bring a more passionate love for Him, despite our personal struggles, and a deeper commitment to Him.

Over lockdown my wife and I have had opportunity to look back on those years when our children were little. We loved those days when parenting was so ‘hands on’ and our kids spent countless hours on our laps. Now those days are over, and we’re in a different (but also good) season. The season of children being babies and toddlers comes only once. This realisation helps us to know that the current season, characterised by COVID-19 and lockdown, is likewise a unique opportunity.

As the world lies quiet, the Lord is moving deeply, and He is inviting us to move with Him. He wants to do a deep work in all of our hearts. Out of His deep love for us He is preparing us for the coming season. May He help us to make the most of this special time. As Moses prayed, “So teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom” (Psalm 90:12).

Prayer: Father in heaven, whilst I may struggle with COVID-19 and its impact on life, I also choose to recognise that You are providing me with a special opportunity during this time. I invite You to plant and build, or uproot and destroy things in my heart, as You see fit. Show me, Lord, what You want to do, and give me the grace to let You do it. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

By Peter Brokaar (Seeds Of The Kingdom)

Thursday 25th Feb 2021

HAVE you ever run a three-legged race?

I grew up in the countryside of South Africa and I have fond memories of our Methodist Sunday School picnics. They were usually held on a level piece of ground near to a river. We needed the level ground for all the races that were an integral part of the fun – the sack race; egg and spoon race and of course – the three- legged race.

My eight-year-old granddaughter visited us this week and, as we were walking along to the shops, she was trying to keep in step with me, and that caused all these memories to come flooding back. As I adjusted my stride to hers, I got to thinking about our ‘walk’ with the Lord. How ‘in-step’ with Jesus are we?

I love the first part of the verse: ‘Draw me after You’. No-one comes to the Father unless the Son draws him. Thankfully, once we have accepted Jesus as Lord and Saviour of our lives, He constantly ‘draws’ us to go deeper with Him. It is up to us to respond and to get in-step with Him. This sounds so obvious, but it can be tricky. It is all too easy to run ahead of Him when we badly want something or a situation to go our way. It can be just as difficult to step out boldly when we want to procrastinate, or are fearful.

How does this relate to where we find ourselves right now in the midst of this worldwide pandemic?

I do not want to make light of the situations we are currently facing. However, the one constant that we have in the midst of all this is the faithfulness of God and His unchanging character and His Word.

We are told in Isaiah 8:12, “You are not to say, ‘It is a conspiracy!’ regarding everything that this people call a conspiracy, And you are not to fear what they fear or be in dread of it”.

How can we put this into practice? I believe that the only way we can apply this in every situation of our lives is to be ‘in-step’ with Him. Being in-step with someone is more than adjusting our pace. It means knowing when to walk and when to stop, or when to veer to the left or the right. It is hearing that small voice saying, “This is the path – walk in it.” We get to this place by spending time with Him, learning His ways and learning to trust His leading. The intimacy which grows from this practice is invaluable. It is like finding that pearl of great price!

Prayer: Jesus, thank You that You are constantly wooing and drawing us to go deeper with You. Please show each one of us where we are out of step with You. We want to ‘run’ with You, so that we no longer need to fear or be in dread of what is going on in the world today, but also so that we can enjoy the abundant life You came to give us and so that You may be glorified. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

By Doreen Bashford (Seeds Of The Kingdom)

Wednesday 24th Feb 2021

Choices have Consequences

Just lately it has been impressed upon me quite forcibly that choices always have consequences. No matter which path we choose, or what decisions we make, there are inevitably certain consequences which will follow, either for good or bad.

For example, Joe and I decided to move from the North East to the North West of England in September 1981. The consequences of that move were enormous, not just for us, but for our family too. One of the positive outcomes was that we became involved with Ellel Ministries, which proved beneficial for our future. Another was that one of our daughters met and married a man from the North West (although the other daughter did choose to return to the North East for her choice of a marriage partner and, by the way, both of them made good choices of marriage partners).

Sometimes the consequences of our decisions can be difficult and not what we really expected or wanted, and we then have to learn to live with the results. Looking back, I am so glad that the most important and the best choice which I ever made was when I was fifteen, when I chose to become a follower of Jesus. So many other important choices have been built upon that first one.

I wonder what choices you have made over the years and what the consequences have been? With Jesus as Lord of your life you can be assured that He is working your choices and the consequences together for your good.

Prayer: Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for the good choices which You have helped me to make, especially the one to make Jesus Lord and Saviour of my life. Please forgive me for my wrong choices and give me the strength to live with the consequences of them, as You work out Your purposes in my life. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.

By Ruth Hawkey (Seeds Of The Kingdom)

Tuesday 23th Feb 2021


We hear a lot these days about staying safe and keeping ourselves free of things that could contaminate us and others. The problem is that nowhere is completely safe, because we live in a contaminated world and, since the Fall of man, we all have the potential to be contaminated. In fact, we are already contaminated through the sin within us which is just waiting to manifest itself through our actions and the circumstances we find ourselves in.

The other night one of the double-glazed panels in the roof of our conservatory on the back of our bungalow suddenly shattered with a loud bang, which woke us up. Having searched the house and found nothing, we went back to sleep. It was only in the morning that we found glass everywhere in the conservatory and were able to look up and see that the inner skin of the glazing panel had disintegrated, for no apparent reason. It was a particularly windy time outside and we were concerned about the safety of the conservatory if the outer skin broke too. It felt very unsafe.

What seemed a safe covering for us suddenly became a threat. That is just like so many of the things we place our trust in to protect us. As I write, many people in the UK and other countries are having vaccinations to protect them from the Covid-19 virus. The hope is that we shall all be safe, but it is significant that we are still being told to stay safe – we have a responsibility to do our part. However, there is only one real source of protection. That is Jesus. His protection goes beyond the merely physical into the eternal. We may suffer in our bodies – or our conservatories! but by ‘living in the shelter of the most high’, we shall experience true protection from the works of the enemy (Psalm 91:1). The Psalm goes on to say ‘This I declare about the Lord: He alone is my refuge and place of safety (Psalm 91:2, NLT).

Bad things still happen, even to believers, but we can look forward to a life to come without fear, pain or broken glass! We shall be welcomed into the perfect presence of Almighty God, and in the meantime, we are offered shelter for our spirits now in the Most High.

Prayer: Most High God and heavenly Father, thank You so much for being our refuge and place of safety. Our world feels very unsafe at the moment, but we turn to You in trust and confidence, looking forward beyond the difficulties of this life towards that perfect place of safety which is to come. Amen.
By Jon Berry (Seeds Of The Kingdom)

Monday 22th Feb 2021

these are written so you may believe

It is encouraging that the book of John was written to tell us some of what Jesus did while He was on earth. Verse 30 tells us that Jesus did many other signs while on earth. These ones were selected to be recorded to help us believe.

There is so much power in testimony! By hearing, we believe, and through believing we have life.

Jesus is still doing many miraculous things in and through His disciples. In John 14:12, Jesus says, “I tell you the truth, anyone who believes in me will do the same works I have done, and even greater works, because I am going to be with the Father”(NLT).

What has Jesus done in your life? I encourage you to write it down. Share it with others. When we remember what He has done, it increases our faith for the next trial that comes our way.

I have personally seen so many amazing things that God has done, such as miraculous provision when all funds were gone, barren women giving birth to children, people with difficulty walking able to run, those with bent backs being able to stand straight again, a baby with a heart condition healed in the womb, to name the first few that come to mind. And then there are all the emotional and spiritual healings!

Maybe you are thinking, “I want to see those kinds of things.” Let me tell you, if you look for what God is doing and make note of it, you will see these kinds of things and even more.

May God help you to remember the things He has done. As He does, I encourage you to write them down. May your faith increase through this process and may you have the abundant life that God has prepared for you.

Prayer: Lord Jesus, thank You for all the amazing things that You have done and continue to do. Please help me to remember what You have done and to share it with others. May this all be for Your glory and to help us all to believe, and that by believing we would have life in Your name. Amen.
By Tanya Person (Seeds Of The Kingdom)

Friday 19th Feb 2021


In the beginning, before anything else existed, was the Word of Life, who was with the Father even before the creation of the world. Together with the Spirit they were separately, and corporately, God. And God said, “Let there be light.”

The world came into being and mankind was born, but a spiritual darkness was let loose which was to contaminate the world. The serpent had infiltrated God’s design by introducing sin. Man fell for his deception and became separated from God. Darkness reigned until, in the fullness of time, God sent His Light into the world, so that through Him man’s relationship with God could be restored.

Jesus came from the realms of glory and was conceived by the Holy Spirit and born in humility. He came to bring light into a dark world. His coming was revealed to the shepherds by a heavenly host of angels, sent by God. ‘The people living in darkness have seen a great light’. For those living under the shadow of death a new light had dawned. Pure and untainted by the sin of the world, the Word of Life became man.

Now He was in the world, and though the world was created through Him, the world did not know Him. His coming had been foretold by the prophets many years before and recorded in the Scriptures, but the people did not recognise Him. He came as their Redeemer and Saviour, but redemption was despised and salvation rejected. He knew pain and suffering; a man of sorrows, acquainted with grief, yet He shared the love of God with all who met Him. To everyone who received Him, and to all who believed in His name He gave the right to become children of God, to be born again, not by a natural human birth, but born of the Holy Spirit, and of God.

See the excitement of the Apostle John as He describes His experiences in walking with this man for almost three years: “The One who was from the beginning, who had been made known by the prophets to be the Saviour of the world has been revealed to us. We have heard Him and seen Him. This man from Galilee, the Light of the World who came from God, we have been with Him and have touched Him! The One who came from the presence of the Father to show us the Way to God was Himself the Word of Life. We are witnessed to His wisdom, His love and compassion and we have walked with Him and lived in His shadow. He promises eternal life to all who would received Him, and I want to declare to you now the truth of what I have seen and heard. He alone is the way to life and to God”.

Receive Him now and know the joy of a new relationship with God the Father.

Prayer: Father, thank You for Your Son. Thank You that through Him I see You and am drawn into Your presence, having tasted the joy of Your salvation. Help me to share this truth with others, so that they too can know the excitement of walking with the Word of Life. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

By Ron Scurfield (Seeds Of The Kingdom)

Thursday 18th Feb 2021


I am very spoken to by songs and, having never been to any kind of children’s church, becoming a believer in my 20’s, I learnt a great deal of Scripture through songs. One of my favourite songs, based on the above scripture from Psalms, is the chorus which says, ‘This is the day, this is the day, that the Lord has made, that the Lord has made. We will rejoice, we will rejoice, and be glad in it, glad in it.’/em>

When things went wrong, I used to say, “It’s not my day”. But I have trained myself not to say this now. Although it is actually true to say that it is ‘not my day’, it is not for the reasons I would have used the phrase then. It is not the desperate cry, “It’s just not my day!”, meaning “It’s so unfair”, or “I’m unhappy”, but for the more reverent reason that it is the Lord’s day.

Our Bible teaches us, in Genesis 1, that not only did God create the world, the heavens and the earth, but He ‘saw that it was good’. So, He made no mistake. We know we live in a world full of sin, pain, and suffering, and this is especially true right now, with so much going on around us that is overwhelming. So, we need to be totally grounded in Him.

We are human beings, made in God’s image in a world that He made. The days were all made by Him. We are created in three parts, body, soul and spirit. So, we can sing these words, using our lungs and voice box, (our physical body), making a conscious choice in our soul (an act of our free will), and doing it as an act of worship (with our human spirit), ‘This is the day, this is the day, that the Lord has made, that the Lord has made. We will rejoice, we will rejoice, and be glad in it, glad in it’.

Even though things might be going wrong all around us (and the writer of this Psalm 91 really understood that), we can make a free will choice not to curse the day, but to accept that our Father made it and choose to rejoice in it. ‘Because of the LORD’s great love, we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness’ (Lamentations 3:22-23).

When we do that, it lifts our spirit because we are aligning ourselves with the King of kings and Lord of lords, and not believing the enemy’s lies. What better place to be! We can face whatever the enemy throws at us, hand in hand with God.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, please help me to bring my cares and troubles to You so that whatever I feel, I will be able to face them with You and not apart from You, knowing that You will never leave me or forsake me. I ask this in the name of your precious son Jesus. Amen.

By Vivienne Hill (Seeds Of The Kingdom)

Wednesday 17th Feb 2021


We have a beautiful black Labrador of about six years old. When he was younger, we just couldn’t teach him to wait before he eats a treat, but over the last year or two he has managed to resist the temptation. He waits obediently until the command comes and then gobbles up whatever is before him. The best part of the whole exercise is watching him while he waits: when we put something down before him, and tell him to wait, he literally turns his head away and looks in the other direction so that he cannot see the treat waiting for him.

This reminded me of temptations in our own lives. Today’s verse explains to us that the temptation alone is not the sin, but what we do with or how we react towards the temptation can give birth to sin. Our Labrador made this process so practical by not looking at the temptation before him, and by doing that, it was easier for him to resist.

We are faced with temptations every day and in almost any situation. Our desires also play a part in this, as mentioned in James. What could be tempting for one person, might not be a problem for someone else. It is therefore important to know our inner selves and to allow the Lord to show us whenever wrong desires are growing in our minds and hearts. He knows every temptation we are faced with. We read in James 4:15 (AMP): ‘For we do not have a High Priest who is unable to sympathize and understand our weaknesses and temptations, but One who has been tempted [knowing exactly how it feels to be human] in every respect as we are, yet without [committing any] sin.’

Let us not use today’s scripture to judge others and point fingers, but let’s learn from these words of wisdom and allow the Lord to look into our hearts and show us where we have made wrong choices along the way. If we have given in to wrong desires that led to sinful actions, we can still turn to the Lord and just be real with Him. We can share our hurts with Him, ask Him to forgive us and bring restoration. In Matthew 12:20 we read what the Lord says about Jesus: ‘He will not break off a bent reed, nor put out a flickering lamp. He will persist until he causes justice to triumph, and on Him all peoples will put their hope’ (GNT).

Prayer: Dear Lord, forgive me for sinful actions in my own life. I’m sorry for how this has also affected other people and when I have hurt others. Help me to understand where these wrong desires come from and why I react towards them. Please help me to recognise temptations and to resist them in Your strength, because when I am weak, You are strong. Amen.

By Annalene Holtzhausen (Seeds Of The Kingdom)

Tuesday 16th Feb 2021

When life’s waves crash over us

I once heard the testimony of a Christian pastor who almost died in an accident while surfing. He was standing near the shore when he was struck from behind by a powerful wave. He was then struck by another wave, with such force that his neck was broken. As he lay injured in the water, it was only the quick action of others on the shore that saved his life. Many months followed of having his neck supported within a metal frame before he recovered from his nearly fatal experience.

I’ve remembered the above, as I’ve thought about the way that life’s events can come upon us just like those waves, with such force that we too can feel that we are struggling to hold on. At the end of last year, Gemma and I experienced the painful loss of our little dog Sid who had been such a precious part of our lives for eleven of his fifteen years. That loss came upon us without warning one day, and, like a wave crashing upon us, left us both breathless with its suddenness.

Then, at the beginning of this year, like the second wave which struck that Christian leader, I experienced a far more profound loss, the death of my Dad after a long-drawn-out illness. Coming so close together, both those losses left my heart broken and torn. I still experience times when waves of grief and sorrow come washing over me. Yet, like that Christian leader lifted from the shallows by his rescuers, I too have felt the loving hands of Jesus holding and carrying me through the tears and pain of those times.

Our verses for today’s Seed remind us that we are not exempt from the crushing power of life’s waves and storms, but they also remind us that we are not at their mercy. We have a rescuer who is there to save us from death. We are reminded by the Apostle Paul that the presence of Jesus Himself, living in us by His Holy Spirit, is the treasure in our fragile lives that is often revealed most powerfully in our times of suffering.

Someone reading this Seed today may feel that they have been struck down and knocked off their feet too many times by life’s waves of pain or difficulty. If that’s you, I pray that you will know the arms of Jesus lifting you up and placing your feet afresh on the solid ground of His love and faithfulness. His promise is true for you. Even though you may have been struck down, you will not be destroyed.

Prayer: Precious Lord Jesus, thank You that, when days seem dark and sorrow’s paths I tread, You, my Saviour, still are with me, and by Your hand I’m safely led. Amen.

By Dean Gardener (Seeds Of The Kingdom)

Monday 15th Feb 2021

Encourage One Another

Early one morning I was passing a field of sheep near my house. It had been a bitterly cold night, and the sheep were huddled close together in a corner of the field, obviously seeking to find a measure of protection and warmth from one another. I thought how sensible of them this was!

In these dark and difficult days, as God’s “sheep” we need to stick together, to find comfort and strength from one another. Even though we are not able to meet physically because of covid restrictions, there are now so many ways in which we can communicate instantly with one another – through phone calls, both video and audio, messaging apps, emails and Zoom gatherings. What an encouragement this can be!

Today’s verse exhorts us to consider how we may spur one another on and encourage each other. I know how important timely words have been for me on occasions, when the Lord has prompted someone to bring encouragement just when I needed it. We can all be used in this way for one another. Proverbs 25:11 says that: “A word aptly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver.” Our words can build up and bring life (Proverbs 18:21). And Proverbs 16:24 tells us that: “Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones”.

Instead of waiting for someone to call you, why not ask the Lord to show you today who needs to hear a word of encouragement from you? You could start to pray for that person and ask God to give you a particular word for them. In that way, we can be an important part of Jesus’s body here, bringing warmth and comfort to one another, like those sheep in the field on a cold night!

Prayer: Lord, I am sorry if I have been focusing too much on my own needs at this time. Please show me if there is someone I can encourage today. Please show me how to pray for them, and please give me a word to encourage them and build them up. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

By Jilly Lyon Taylor (Seeds Of The Kingdom)

Friday 12th Feb 2021


What exactly does it mean to be ‘in’ Christ? Someone once described it like this: If your father, grandfather or even great grandfather (depending on how old you are), had been killed in one of the wars, you would not exist. You would have died with him, because you were ‘in him’. The seed of you was there in him. What and who you are, which country you are a citizen of, was all affected by him.

We were all ‘in’ Adam when he sinned against God in the garden (see Genesis 3 for the story), so we were all affected by that sin. What God did for us was to enable us, if we are willing, to be transferred into Christ and ‘in’ Him we were crucified along with Him (just like we would have died with our ancestor in the war) and also, the most important bit, we were resurrected to new life with Him, setting us free from the old inheritance of sin from Adam. Alleluia!

Another example of the story is Mephibosheth in 2 Samuel 9. When David became king it was expected, in those days, that he would seek out and kill all the descendants of king Saul so that they would not try to fight him and take the kingdom back. However, he had loved Mephibosheth’s father Jonathan (the crown prince) and they had made a covenant together to protect one another (1 Samuel 20).

At the time the covenant was made, Mephibosheth was not born but, of course, he was ‘in’ his father in the same way we were when our parents lived through the wars. So, David did seek him out and Mephibosheth was afraid he would be killed. But, no, David took him into his palace as a son and took care of him. He was included in the covenant that David had made with his father, because he was ‘in’ Jonathan at the time.

Being ‘in’ Christ means we can enjoy the blessings that Christ won for us in the New Covenant, being new creations (2 Corinthians 5:17), with a new inheritance (Hebrews 9:15). Several times we are exhorted to ‘remain in Him’. It’s not something we need to strive at (although there are things to do). We just need to rejoice in it, and rest in the truth that we are ‘in’ Him, if we have recognised what He did for us and asked Him that we might receive it.

Prayer: thank You, Lord, that we have new life in You, that we died with You to the old inheritance of sin and now we have a new inheritance with You. Help us to grasp all that this means and to walk with You daily in the new, resurrection life we have ‘in’ You. Amen.

By Dotty Cockcroft (Seeds Of The Kingdom)

Thursday 11th Feb 2021

Make it personal

One of the most exciting things about Scripture is when it is energised by the Holy Spirit and the scales fall off our eyes to see or understand things that have always been there, but which we have not registered before. Suddenly the words pierce our hearts, and we feel the personal message from the Word for us. We know without a doubt that God is speaking to us and our current situation through his Word.

God definitely means for Scripture to become personal to us. It is through His word that the world was created, and Jesus is His word become flesh. Nothing can be more personal than God reaching out to us in human form. His intention is clearly to elicit a personal response from us and for us to develop a personal relationship with Him.

We can intensify the personal application of God’s word to our lives by using it in prayer. We can take scriptures that the Holy Spirit has highlighted for us and make them personal by praying them. For example, Romans 12 became absolutely fascinating for me last year when I read it in the Amplified version. (Often reading verses in a different translation triggers a fresh realisation of their meaning, and that is what happened for me).

I felt led to forge a daily personal prayer and declaration out of it, both with the purpose of declaring God’s word and of cementing the truth of that word in my own soul. I share this prayer with you as an example of the process of making Scripture personal to you, although obviously the Holy Spirit guides each of us individually.

“I make a decisive dedication of my body, soul and spirit in exclusive attachment to God (verse 1). I will not let myself be overcome by evil (verse 21), but I will exult in hope and be constant in prayer (verse12). I will be aglow and burning with the Spirit (verse11), for God is my glory and my joy.”

Another wonderful scripture that I discovered a while ago is Isaiah 59:19 in the Amplified Version. My prayer became, “Lord, the enemy is coming in like a flood. Holy Spirit, lift up a standard against him and come like a rushing stream that the breath of the Lord drives and put him to flight.”

I encourage you to ask the Lord for scriptures that you can pray in this manner and I can attest from personal experience that you will know God’s power in a new way.

Prayer: Thank You, Lord, for the power of the Scriptures, inspired by You. Please speak to us from Your word and make it more and more personal every day. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

By Wendy Scott (Seeds Of The Kingdom)

Wednesday 10th Feb 2021

New Every Morning

Our home faces slightly east of south, which means that, in the winter, we can see the sunrise. This morning it was beautiful as the sun came up over the snow-sprinkled hills opposite, its golden light reflected in the clouds.

As I saw it, I thought of these well-known words from Lamentations. The whole book describes the ruins of Jerusalem and Jeremiah’s grief over all that had happened. Yet, right at the heart of his lament, he proclaims God’s love, His compassion, and His faithfulness, ‘new every morning’.

His loving kindnesses! It’s that well-known Hebrew word, chesed, God’s covenant love. Malcolm Smith, in his book, The Power of the Blood Covenant, describes this word as meaning, ‘God keeping every word and giving every blessing He has promised’. Jeremiah puts it in the plural – ‘loving kindnesses’ – because God demonstrates His love to us over and over again.

And His compassion. This word reflects the love of a mother for her new-born baby. It is full of tenderness. It speaks of His readiness to meet our every need. In the Hebrew, this word is plural, too: God’s compassions. Whatever our need, He has just the right kind of compassion. When Sue was in a maternity hospital ward after giving birth to our daughter, if one baby cried at night, all the mums woke up. God’s like that. The moment He hears one of His children cry out to Him, He’s on the case. Actually, He’s even better, because He never goes to sleep.

Then, there’s His faithfulness. The Hebrew word means strength and stability. God always keeps His word because He never changes. He is ‘the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows’ (James 1:17).

Tomorrow may not bring another sparkling sunrise – it may be all wet and dreary. But the sun will still be there. Whatever I might feel, God’s loving kindnesses will still be there, and his compassions, and all His faithful strength and stability.

At present, we live in a very troubled world. And, maybe, your personal circumstances are difficult. But God doesn’t change. He has all the strength of solid rock, and all the tenderness of a loving mother. As Isaiah says: ‘Can a woman forget her nursing child, that she should not have compassion on the son of her womb? Yes, these may forget, yet I will not forget you!’ (Isaiah 49:15). His loving kindnesses and His compassions never fail. They are new every morning. Great is His faithfulness – today and every day.

Prayer: Father, thank You that, whatever my circumstances, whatever challenges I face today, You have the answer to every need. I praise You for Your loving kindnesses, Your compassions and Your total faithfulness. Faithful God, today, I put everything into Your hands. Amen.

By Richard Grittiths (Seeds Of The Kingdom)

Tuesday 9th Feb 2021


In these challenging times it is good to remind ourselves that the Holy Spirit is given to us from God and He lives within us today. Jesus said to His disciples, ‘You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you’ (Acts 1:8). In fulfilment of this promise, many of us have experienced the baptism and gifts of the Holy Spirit and can testify to how life changing that experience was. Perhaps we should ask the question whether we are still experiencing the Holy Spirit moving in our lives today and seeing His gifts outwork in our lives.

In his letter to Timothy the apostle Paul urges Timothy to fan into flame the gift God has given to him (at the time Paul laid hands on him). If we know the Holy Spirit gave gifts to us in the past, perhaps it is time to ask the Lord to stir up those gifts again. We must remember gifts are not rewards for hard work or service to the Lord or even for holiness. Nobody can deserve to receive the Holy Spirit’s gifts.

I am old enough to remember my father wanting to fan into flame the dying embers of our coal fire in the sitting room by opening the broadsheet newspaper and placing it across the fireplace. Almost immediately the flames leapt up back into life. If he had not taken this action, the fire would have gone out.

This is the picture I want to share with you today to encourage you to not neglect what the Holy Spirit has given you. How is the Holy Spirit at work in your life today and are His gifts operating in your life? If you feel something has gone dormant or stale, draw close to the Lord and ask Him to rekindle the embers afresh. Wouldn’t it be wonderful to see more of the Holy Spirits gifts in our lives, churches and ministries? It is only as we draw close to God in humility and surrender and invite the Holy Spirit afresh into our lives, that He rekindles our heart and fans into flame His gifts within us.

Do you remember the scriptures of Peter at the gate beautiful with the lame man? Peter said, “Silver and gold have I none: but such as I have I give thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk” (Acts 3:6, KJV). Peter knew God heals and had the gift of faith to believe in the miraculous. The healing that followed was amazing.

Let’s ask ourselves before the Lord if there is a need for a rekindling of His gifts within us today. Let’s be a people who hunger to see more of God’s power at work in this world through signs and wonders – that many more people would believe in our miracle-working God – for His glory!

Prayer: Father, help us to come with humble and contrite hearts seeking You in a deeper more intimate relationship. Help us to stir up Your gifts of the Holy Spirit in us that we might flow in Your power and do the things You did. We love You and want to bring You glory, in Jesus’ name, Amen.

By Jill Southern (Seeds Of The Kingdom)

Tuesday 19th January 2021

We Can’t Win A War Without Fighting A Battle

Are we finding life a bit difficult just now, with all its anxieties, loneliness and uncertainties? Are we struggling to stay on top, in touch with God, during this difficult time? The Bible tells us ‘my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus’ (Philippians 4:19). Is this our experience? David the psalmist wrote, ‘the Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.’ David knew His God. He didn’t just know about Him, but knew Him as his Lord. He trusted Him and depended on Him, as his sheep would trust and depend upon their shepherd.

Jesus said, ‘this is eternal life, that they know you the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent’ (John 17:3). Do we know our God? – That is, to receive Him, serve Him, trust Him and allow Him to be Shepherd of our lives.

God will supply all our needs ‘in Christ Jesus.’ We have to be ‘in Him’ as He is in us. ‘Remain in me and I will remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me’ (John 15:4). To be in Him we must allow Him to be in us and acknowledge Him as Lord by the Holy Spirit.

Christ fought for our lives on the cross. He prevailed over all the powers of darkness, and won a victory that we all can share. We too are called to fight the good fight of faith (1 Timothy 6:12). But He is our sword and our shield, and we must never let them drop from our grasp.

We can’t win a war without fighting a battle. ‘In the world you will have tribulation..’ (John 16:33). But we’re called to put our trust in Him, because He has overcome the world. ’Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding’ (Proverbs 3:5). We must hold on to Him with all we have, and not let go. He is with us in all things and will never leave us. Of this we can be sure.

Peter called out to Jesus as he began to sink under the water, “Lord, save me.” (Matthew 14:30). Jesus immediately reached out His hand and caught him, at the very point of his sinking. Not before.

It’s a difficult road we’re walking, in testing times, with the enemy lurking In the bushes. This is all the more reason why we need to put our trust completely in God and hold on. He knows the end from the beginning and as we trust Him He’ll see us through, because He loves us.

‘In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your path’ (Proverbs 3:6)

Prayer: Father, I know You are with me always, but sometimes I forget and look to my own understanding. Draw me closer to You I pray, so that in these difficult times I become more aware of Your presence and Your peace. Lord, I put my trust in You completely and am confident that You are guiding my path. Thank You, in the name of Jesus. Amen.

By Ron Scurfield (Seeds Of The Kingdom)

Friday 15th January 2021


This psalm is A Wedding Song. A warrior Prince preparing for his wedding day. What a hero Prince he is, noble, just, fighting for truth and right – and doing it all with grace and humility!

He has elaborately prepared for this day, ‘All your robes are fragrant with myrrh and aloes and cassia; from palaces adorned with ivory The music of the strings makes you glad’ (verse 8).

The bride emerges with her bridesmaids in stately procession, to meet the groom. Her dress is weighed down with its pure gold, interwoven thread, and dazzling, gold-encrusted embroidery.

We don’t know who this bride is, who are her parents or what is their status. It’s all irrelevant. This bride is adored by the King’s son and he has chosen her. That’s all that matters. He can marry whomever he wishes and, as she enters his family and is honoured and adored by him, she takes his status.

The book of Hebrews tells us that this Song is all about Jesus (Hebrews 1:9), our Warrior Prince. I sometimes feel that we see Jesus as baby, as teacher, as man of sorrows, dying on the cross. We see Him as warrior, great and glorious in His ascension and His authority. But this song is about His personal love, His personal delight and personal relationship, His life in His family. It is about the Church, about the bride of this Warrior, about the bride whom He adores, His personal delight and passion. The bride is urged to leave all her previous life behind. ‘Listen, O daughter, consider and give ear; forget your people and your father’s house. The king is enthralled with your beauty; honour him for he is your lord’ (Psalm 45:10-11).

The standing of the King is everything – and He adores His church. He has picked us out. We are the reason why His robes are fragrant with spices. We are the reason why the musicians are tuning up, ready for the dancing in his ivory palaces. He is coming very soon to find His bride – us, His church. He’s longing to find us ready for him when He comes.

Prayer: Thank You Jesus, that You are our Warrior Prince and that You passionately love us, Your Bride. Holy Spirit, will You speak this love right into our inner beings that we might be ready and longing for Your coming again, ready for You. Amen.

By Sue Griffiths (Seeds Of The Kingdom)

Tuesday 12th January 2021

Where Are You Placing Your Hope?

I’m writing this seed on the first day of the New Year, looking back with thankfulness to God for His unending faithfulness and unfailing love during the past year, and looking forward in hope to seeing His purposes fulfilled during this year. As Christians we live in a broken world, we face difficult circumstances and situations for which we do not have an answer, but in all our dilemmas we have a hope which acts as an anchor of the soul, firm and secure, because we belong to Jesus, who is Lord over all.

Hope for many during 2020 has been in developing a Coronavirus vaccine. In a pre-Christmas update the UK Health Minister said “The great hope for 2021 is the vaccine.” The vaccine may help to diminish fear of getting the disease. It may help in the rebuilding of the nation. But there is only one way to find healing for deep spiritual and emotional needs suffered by countless people, and that is in Jesus, the Hope of the world. The hope that Jesus gives is a reservoir of spiritual and emotional strength, available to all who trust Him. We live in this hope, whatever our circumstances, and even when prayer isn’t answered our way.

The natural use of the word hope is a desire for something good in the future, which may not happen. It is wishful thinking and is an expression of uncertainty, often accompanied by, “Fingers crossed.” Biblical hope does not come naturally. It is inspired by the Holy Spirit. It is a desire for something good in the future accompanied by the confidence and expectation that it will happen, because it is based on God’s word. ‘Faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see’ (Hebrews 11:1). Faith is the opposite to doubt, so we might say that hope is the certainty of faith. Hope is founded in the purposes and promises of God. It is never self-seeking.

Hope is a thread which runs through the Bible from beginning to end and it usually has a promise attached to it. This hope is not our initiative. As our text for today assures us, God Himself is the giver of true hope which floods the human heart with joy and peace. It is supernatural, in that the Holy Spirit within us causes hope to overflow from us to those who are overwhelmed with hopelessness. We are called to be bringers of good news. Biblical hope is never inward-focused, self-centred or negative, because the work of the Holy Spirit is always to glorify Jesus through those who love Him.

When our hope is in God alone, we are lifted from being downcast, disturbed and troubled into a place of praise (Psalm 43:5). We have inner rest and live in the joy of His unfailing love (Psalm 130:7), and He delights in us (Psalm 147:11). With hope, our heart our strength is renewed like the eagle’s (Isaiah 40:31) and we will never be disappointed ((Isaiah 49:23b). ‘Hope does not disappoint us because the love of God has been shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit’ (Romans 5:5, NKJV). To me, this sounds like victorious living, because the safest place to be is near to Jesus, with hope in your heart.

People I know have been reading the Book of Job in recent months. Job lost his children, servants, crops and everything he possessed and yet he said, “Though He slay me, yet I will hope in Him.” When there seems to be little hope in the circumstances around us, we need to take our eyes off the circumstances and fix them on Jesus, the Hope of the World. Our world is a troubled world. It is a dark world needing Jesus, the only hope of the world, to shine into troubled hearts. The believers’ hope is eternal. It is called a ‘blessed’ hope (Titus 2:13), because we are waiting for our Great God and Saviour, Jesus Christ, to come again. So during 2021 let us live for Him as Kingdom people in hope of this glorious promise being fulfilled.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank You for the hope I have in Jesus. I pray that, whatever this year may hold, my life will glorify You, as I choose to live with my eyes fixed on Jesus. Fill me afresh with Your Holy Spirit, so that, in these troubled times, the love and compassion of Jesus will flow to those who desperately need Him. May Your kingdom come, and Your will be done in and through my life, as I pray for Your glory. Amen.

By Margaret Silvester (Seeds Of The Kingdom)

Tuesday 8th December 2020

There are a number of instances in the Scriptures which tell us of God’s heart to offer people the chance to begin again. For example, we could think about David, a man after God’s own heart who committed adultery with Bathsheba. There is Moses, who killed a man before moving into his calling. There is also the apostle Peter, who when faced with a servant girl accusing him of being a follower of Jesus, failed the test to be a witness.

‘Peter responded, “Man, I don’t know what you are talking about!” At that very moment, while he was still speaking, a rooster crowed. The Lord turned and looked straight at Peter, and Peter remembered the Lord’s words: “Before a rooster crows today, you will deny me three times.””

However, the good news is that Jesus gave Peter a second chance.

After His death and resurrection, Jesus sent a message via an angel: ‘Go, tell his disciples, especially Peter, that he is going ahead of you into Galilee. You will see him there, just as he told you’ (Mark 16:7).

Peter took his second chance: ‘A few days later there was a meeting of the believers, about 120 in all, and Peter stood up to speak’ (Acts 1:15 GNB).

I am so blessed that we serve a God who is willing to give us a second chance; well actually in my case it is a second, third, and maybe a fourth chance that I have needed. I guess most of us would have written Peter off after he denied Jesus in front of the young servant girl. I am sure that his face would be aflame with shame when she accused him of being a follower of Jesus, swearing and denying that he was! After all, he was one of His closest friends, the one whom Jesus should have been able to rely upon. In my book, it would have been the time to ditch Peter, wipe my hands of him and declare him a lost cause!

But that is not the way of Jesus, for we see that He gives Peter another opportunity to show his loyalty and his leadership qualities. When someone was needed to replace Judas, who had betrayed Jesus, Peter did not fail the challenge. Rising to his feet he declared that they needed to choose another person who had been a witness to Jesus’ resurrection. And under his direction Matthias was chosen.

I wonder where you are in the scale of things. Are you, like me, in need of a second or third chance to prove your love and loyalty? If so, you have come to the right person – Jesus is ready to forgive and restore you, because of His great love and His faith in you and in your future.

Prayer: Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that You know my weaknesses and my sin, but that You also know my heart and my desire to serve You. Please forgive me for the times when I have been a poor witness to Your grace and love and help me to stand strong in the future. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.

Tuesday 24th November 2020

 Jehovah Ori….the LORD my light.
 In the Old Testament, we read of the account of God being a pillar of fire by night lighting the way for the tribes of Israel casting back the darkness, a very present help in a time of need reassuring them. God continually showed the children of Israel the way.
 Jesus came into this dark and fallen world as a light casting out the darkness which cannot comprehend it. Many cannot comprehend the message of salvation because they are bound in the darkness of the world seduced by its lies. blinded by the false light of the world wearing their own personal vails of religion. BUT GOD sent his only begotten Son to be a light in the world to show us the way to the father as a light bearer
doing what He had seen His Father do.
Thank You Father for sending Jesus into this dark world to cast light upon the paths you have set before us, so we can walk into the destiny that you have for us.  As we journey along the path according to your word may the light of Christ shine brightly in us so that we can be light-bearers to all you call to follow you. In Jesus’ name… AMEN!

Wednesday 11 November 2020

16 As you yield freely and fully to the dynamic life and power of the Holy Spirit, you will abandon the cravings of your self – life.[e] 17 For your self – life craves the things that offend the Holy Spirit and hinder him from living free within you! And the Holy Spirit’s intense cravings hinder your old self – life from dominating you! So then, the two incompatible and conflicting forces within you are your self – life of the flesh and the new creation life of the Spirit.

Every one of us share the same war. The battle between flesh & spirit. And so often we can be locked into cycles of sin and disobedience, even though we may want to do the right thing and follow God’s way. The Apostle Paul says I do what I hate, and I don’t do what I want to do. We all face this. But this passage in Galatians is so powerful and gives us the remedy to a life that is dominated by the flesh. It says “yield” to the spirit and you actually “abandon the cravings and desires of your self-life”. The more we receive the spirit of God the more the flesh loses its grip on us. We actually abandon those fleshly cravings when we are wrapped up in more of God’s presence! He infuses us with the strength we need to live a Godly life. We don’t have to fight and try to be good, but can simply surrender to more of Him and we change. John 15 says apart from Him we can do NOTHING! We are never going to be able to change ourselves. It’s only by the Spirit working in us. So I encourage you to pursue Him above all else today. Get a single eye on Him. Yield to Him. Let the Spirit dominate your flesh!

Know our God…..He is….. Jehovah Rohi….Lord my shepherd
If ever there is a Psalm that is a practical guide to living, following Jesus  Christ and by being mindful of all that entails, it is this one.
Psalm 23
          1 The LORD is my shepherd; for we like sheep have gone astray and the LORD lays our iniquities upon Jesus our Shepherd. I shall not want…………for you fill us, you transform us, you meet our every need.you provide.
          2 He makes me lie down in green pastures;…….He gives us rest, making time by grace for us to sleep and as we do, He is busy doing his magnificent work.
 He leads me beside still waters,…………for there you give us peace to quieten our minds for you said “peace I leave with you, the peace I give to you; not as the world gives to you. Let not your heart be troubled,                    neither let it be afraid.
  3 He restores my soul: He leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake…………..
He gives restoration to our soul for though we are a new creature life will have left its mark we get damaged by life, but the Lord restores and as we walk in love and peace with one another and see a brother or sister beat down by a situation we are to bring restoration in a spirit of meekness.
He leads me in paths of righteousness as we follow the Shepherd remain focused on him we walk on. God will not fail to lead us right.
 4. Yea though I walk through the valley of the Shadow of death,………knowing that Jesus leads us we can rest assured he knows where he is going because He is already there, and by the leading .and following of the Holy Spirit,  His word concerning us will not return void.
 I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and Your staff comfort me……………… We have been made righteous by the Blood of Jesus and not of ourselves, our security comes from the shepherd, for we lay down like sheep when not afraid. even our sleep is sweet because we’re not afraid. are we not Victorious in       Christ Jesus.
 5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies:………..Not only are we comforted in the assurance of the Shepherd’s rod of protection but also the staff for rescue which enforces that comfort and to think that the Shepherd leads his flock to the best places for food in the presence of any predator.No weapon formed against us shall prosper.
You anoint my head with oil; my cup runs over…… You anoint our heads with your Holy Spirit protecting us from the flies that whisper and try to bite into our thought life and keep us from butting heads.
As we follow the Shepherd there is an abundance and as we have more than enough here we can follow. the example of the Shepherd and give, give out of the overflow.
  6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life:……………Oh, what confidence we can have in the Shepherd for His mercies are new every day and he is eternally good.
We can have a confidence for surely his goodness and mercy follow us for it says we shall dwell in the  house of the  Lord forever. We have the assurance of Romans 8 “nothing can separate us from the Love of God”.
Say this prayer if you would like Jesus to become your Shepherd.
Dear Lord Jesus, I recognise that my life is meaningless without you I recognise that i am a sinner and I repent of my sins today and ask that you would become my Lord and saviour and become the Shepherd of my life in Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
Know our God …..He is… Jehovah Sabaoth…The Lord our Host
1 Samuel 17:45
Then said David to the Philistine, Thou comest to me with a sword, and a spear,  and a shield: but I come to you in the name of the LORD of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel whom thou hast defied.
No matter how many times you hear the account of David slaying the Giant Goliath one can’t but help get a little excited. This young shepherd boy offended and indignant at the arrogance and vileness
of this giant of a man hurling insults at God and His chosen people, His children.
The LORD of hosts is moved by this young man whom he has tested in the wilderness having seen him slay a bear and a lion with just his bare hands. This boy who God sees as one after His own heart.
This boy displays a righteous indignation God has not seen in the entire army of Israel who were following after their chosen king. One who was prepared to face the enemy of Israel, who if they didn’t defeat would become their slaves, David fired up enough to stand for His God with or without the army of Israel as he knew his God would be there for him. Can you imagine as God moves to stand as David’s rear Guard  heavens host in one accord move to stand and witness one of the greatest single conflicts in the nations,
History as the outcome depended on the actions of a boy armed with 5 stones and a sling.
We can see the heavenly host when we recall the account of the LORD in 2 Kings:17 Opening the eyes
Elisha’s servant Gehazi and roundabout were a multitude of Horsemen and chariots outnumbering the Syrian army.
Romans 8:31What then shall we say to these things?  If God be for us, who can be against us.
   Psalm 46:10,11
  10 Be still and know that I am God:
  I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in all the earth. Jacob is our refuge. Selah.
  What a mighty God we are called to serve.
Father God, we thank you that you are our
 ever-present help in times of trouble.
That you never leave us nor forsake us
 Lord God forgive us when we take for granted
 just how much you love every one of us,
you sent your Son to suffer and die for us,
You gave us the Holy Spirit to live in and out of us
revealing your love towards us and through us.
You stand behind one that stands for you and you move all of heaven’s hosts to protect the one for the
sake of many. you never slumber nor sleep but are constantly maneuvering everything in accordance to your will. Thank you that you love us all more with an everlasting love.
Glory and praise, and honour to your name in Jesus’ name we pray!
Amen and Amen
Tuesday 20th OCTOBER
Know our GOD…..He is
                                  Jehovah El Roi……the God who sees
The God who sees, the shepherd that keeps constant watch over his flock who knows each one intimately down to the number of hairs upon their heads – always counting watching for any change in the dynamics of relationships, sensitive to emotions and attentive to every voice. He listens to the silences, watching for any change and any opportunity to bless constantly loving without condition. For love bares its own conditions.
It says in God’s word that (2 Chronicles) “For the eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show Himself strong to all those whose hearts are perfect towards him.”
God looks at the condition of our hearts towards him. God responds to what the heart reveals concerning our needs, not our emotions or our carnal desires.
Remember He is the ALPHA and OMEGA – He sees the end of a thing as well as the beginning and is mindful to see its course so that it comes to the end that He has ordained for it.
Hagar was expelled by Abraham because of the contention she caused because she had given Abraham a son, Ishmael meaning God hears. Forced to leave and headed for Egypt her homeland found herself and Ishmael in the wilderness of Shur. Ishmael having drunk the last drop of their water lay in the shade of a bush while Hagar sat a short distance away travailing in her heart rocking back and forth, as she could hear Ishmaels cries. And wondered where God is, He doesn’t even hear my son who is called after His likeness. Hagar heard a voice  ” Do not be afraid, God has heard the boy crying, lift him up and take him by the hand, for I will make him into a great nation”  then God opened Hagar’s eyes and there in that place God had provided water answering their greatest need.
Jehovah El Roi God who sees everything who responds to the hearts that are steadfast toward Him,
showing yourself strong in their circumstance, seeing there every need and meeting it. He is mindful of those whose eyes are stayed on Him even though they feel God is not present.
Lord help us to remain focused on you, looking up to where our help comes from – from Zion the city on the hill, as you constantly look over us, may your praises continually be in our mouths and upon our lips and you remain upon them. We thank you and praise you for you are faithful even. when we are not.
In Jesus name, we pray,
Monday 19th OCTOBER
Jehovah….El Olam
Genesis 21:33 The name of the Lord the Everlasting God
John 3:16
For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son that whosoever…..let us stop there and just focus on the Who-so-ever. The “whosoever” negates the what, where, when, and howsoever of a person as we are continually being defined by the answers to these questions to establish the truth of who we are within the limits of our understanding of our reality. But God dismisses all of these questions and just simply asks whoever wants to believe the Gospel, whoever wants eternal life, you are all included if you choose to believe the eternal truth and live in and out of it with Christ Jesus by His spirit forsaking our limitations, our ever becomes His everlasting.
 Whatever we choose with the free will we have been given. When we choose not to accept God’s Truth, His will for our lives we are choosing darkness, eternal damnation, eternal death, the second death.
 When we choose to accept God’s truth and live in the reality of that, we surrender our will and gain His will.
Jeremiah 29:11 For i know the plans I have for you “says the LORD” plans to prosper you and not to harm you, to give you a future and a hope……
Mathew 19:29 shall inherit EVERLASTING life…….
Revelation 14:6 – having the EVERLASTING Gospel to preach……
Genesis 17:8 – I will give as an EVERLASTING possession to you……
Ezra 9:12 –  to your children as an EVERLASTING inheritance
Psalm 90:2  – from EVERLASTING to EVERLASTING you are….. God
Psalm 139:24 – and lead me in the way EVERLASTING…..
Psalm 145:13 – your kingdom is an EVERLASTING kingdom….
Isaiah 51:11 EVERLASTING joy will crown their heads
So our God is the everlasting.
 Everlasting God, the creator of heaven and earth for all things begin with God and all things end with God for you are the Alpha and Omega the beginning and the end. You are the author and the finisher of our faith, you are our very present help in times of need, you are our covenant keeping God, you give and you take away.
ABBA though our lives are but a breath in the expanse of eternity you have promised eternal life through your Son our Lord and saviour Jesus Christ we ask that you would fill us afresh this day with your eternal Spirit so that we may endure the race to which we have been called to run in Jesus name we pray. Amen
 Jehovah Rapha…..God our Healer – John 3:16
 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son that whosoever believeth on him shall not perish but have eternal life.
Why would the God of all creation send His only begotten Son into the World to Die for a sinful world?
God spoke all things into being and said it was good, then he made man from the dust of the earth and said that it was very very good. And then from man, he formed woman to be a HELP mate. As we know it became evident that man needed help quite quickly because his first mistake was catastrophic – because disobedience had now started a cycle of death, a perpetual cycle, an eternal cycle that God was now compelled to interrupt on behalf of all of Adams descendants. Because of this, they were now born of the sinful nature of man and not the Spirit of God. Sin unrepentant leads to death and can only be reversed by Godly repentance which leads to righteousness not to be regretted. Sin brought a continued decline of man for it is the product of a fallen being and it can only produce of itself, so everything that comes from it is destined to die and to go down into the grave or to burn and return to dust as man’s spirit would be lost to eternal darkness or damnation in the lake of fire which is hell.
So the world is now sick, man is in a state of decline on every level – even as good as what their life may look like they are in a cycle of death. Everything outside of the garden of Eden, outside of the presence of God and out from underlying God’s covering of blessing has to sustain itself.
Jesus is the way, the truth  and the life and He came into our sick world to bring healing, restoration, and eternal salvation in which showing us how to live and how to come back to the father and live in his grace, his blessings of love, peace, taking on the character and nature of the father by demonstrating  what God originally planned for us and offers us by way of the Cross and the shed blood of Jesus.
Abba Our heavenly Father you who is Holy and righteous, we lift our hearts,
 our hands and voices to you in praise, for You, are worthy of all our praises for
there is none like you or can do what you have done through your Son
 our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
We ask of ourselves and all we love
and hold dear that you would be enthroned upon our praises and in your
 presence we would be made whole, that hope would be restored and as you
 release your word over us, you would wash us by the blood of Jesus and
 give us clean hands, pure hearts and renew our minds deliver us from all spiritual bondage, diseases, viruses, and infirmities soak us in your mercies where there is peace, love
and joy so that our strength may be renewed and we can rise and serve to advance your kingdom
Who is our God…He is
Jehovah Nissi…..Lord… is… my Banner.
Exodus 17:15 The Lord is my Banner
To think that God who in his word says that he is our rearguard is also our banner before the enemy, Imagine the army of God arrayed in bright armour and even the horses are covered. We are in a time of advancing, gathering new recruits for the kingdom of God with our praises going before us…  the warring angels advancing over the treetops.
Some (as it says in Psalm 34:7) may grow faint and silent and blinded and captive to the darkness needing their eyes open.
( 2 Kings 6:
17) to the multitude of that great cloud of witnesses (Heb12:1)and the army of heaven, the more that are for us diminishing those that are against us.
What a glorious sight that must have been for Elisha’s servant! For let us not be afraid, but stand and see the salvation of the LORD, which He will work for you today, for the enemy you see before you today you shall see them again no more forever!
All glory to you our God
we Praise your Holy name for 
this is the day that you have made
 and we shall rejoice in it.
We take courage in that you, who is
our ever-present help goes before us
 may your praises be continually upon our lips
and our hearts remain grateful  for Jesus
 who has one us the victory!
Wednesday 14th OCTOBER
Know our God ….He is
Jehovah Adonai…..Lord our Master
Matthew 7:21
Not everyone that says to me ‘Lord Lord’ shall enter the Kingdom of Heaven but he who does the will of the My father in. Many will say to me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in
your name, cast out demons in your name, and done many wonders in your name?
 And then I will declare to them ‘I never knew you’…
A strong word to take in but a necessary one nonetheless, for who is Lord. in the Old Testament it was clearly defined as God the LORD all capitals, for in This way it meant Father, Son and Holy Ghost through the Son – which was not yet revealed or that the Holy Spirit was available to everyone. You see also that the Prophets were referred to as Lord as a sign of respect as well as kings and men of nobility.
What do they all have in common?….. They all possess territory, have servants, and are stewards of the people.
 So what sets our Lord Jesus apart from Prophets, kings, and noblemen?
Romans 13:1
 Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God and the authorities that exist are appointed. (God is in control)
JESUS our King of Kings, our Lord of Lords, Our Prophet and Prophecy, our Master
who from above came to earth and clothed as a man leaving all sovereignty, deity and all the comforts of heaven giving up his Godhead to live as one of us – till the appointed day that he entered into his ministry being baptised of John and receiving the Holy Spirit. Him in having God the father to officiate the ceremony and to speak over himself and to declare ‘This is my Son in whom I am well pleased’ right there is the line clearly drawn in the sand and the eye’s, the hearts, the mind, the soul, the very sky itself as from that moment. More than just a man with a mission, but a divine mission that no other man on the face of the earth could do but to lead the way for all to follow in His name…  ‘not by our might, our minds but by His Spirit’ under the covering of the Blood of Jesus, Let us take a moment to give thanks and praise!
Father, we thank and praise you for you are God and you are in control.
We thank and praise you for Jesus, our waymaker.
Lord Jesus, we thank you for giving your life, for dying for us and shedding your Blood and water for your very essence.
Lord Jesus, we thank you for Your Holy Spirit.
Lord Jesus, we thank you for your name for without it we can do nothing.
Thank you, Lord Jesus
Thank you, Lord Jesus
Thank you, Lord Jesus
Tuesday 13th OCTOBER
Know our God…He is.
Jehovah Elohim… Strong Creator. The Lord is mighty
Elohim (Plural) meaning more than one.
To the believer that is God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. never to be confused or used in the context of there being many gods in the pagan/worldly sense.
We can find 365 names in  God’s word by which we can call, describe Him but for now, we will look at the 21 Hebrew names beginning with Jehovah Elohim.
The basic meaning behind the name Elohim is one of strength or power of effect, what power and strength it took to command the light into effect? Elohim the infinite all-powerful God, who shows by His works – He is the creator, sustainer, and supreme judge of the world.  Do we ever need such a God to be present in this dark and wicked world and has He not made His presence known in the midst of this global pandemic of fear? What a Faithful God we serve.
Psalm 46:1
God is our refuge and strength a  very present help in times of trouble.
Faithful towards us by His word which He keeps and sees that it comes to pass. This same God who commands.
Psalm 46:10.  
Be still and know that I am God.
In this one line, He speaks to us individually but in the context of the whole verse.
Be still and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.
The same God that says ” let there be” also says ” be still,”
” I am your ever-present help.” What an incredible promise! The God of all creation, the God who declares, commands, and reassures us personally.
Lord God, our heavenly father –  we thank you that you the creator of heaven and earth, who spoke all things into being, are mindful of each and every one of your children. Faithful sticking closer than a brother, our ever-present help and our rear guard, a strong tower, mighty to save because we sing praises to you our God, we sing praises to you our king.
Jehovah Elyon…Lord, most high.
     Isaiah 57:15
                         For thus saith the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and Holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the of the contrite ones.
 In this devotion let us take a right posture as we look at God’s word and how it clearly shows us God’s position – how He has not only placed us beneath Him and yet He gives us access to enter into His courts. with thanksgiving and praises through His Son Jesus…Hallelujah
All that God has spoken appeared before Him all that He created with his hands was and is before him, like the potter that sits at his wheel he puts the clay down upon the wheel and with his hands Elijah went up to he creates from his heart what he sees in his mind. He says to himself I will make a vessel and He sets to create.
  Isaiah 6:1 in the year King Uzziah died, Isaw the Lord, high and exalted, seated on a throne; and the train of his robe filled the temple. further on it says “And they were calling to one another ” Holy Holy Holy is the LORD God Almighty; the earth is full of his glory
So our God is High, lofty, above, exalted…. and all this says that God is set apart why because he is Holy, the beauty of our God and His heart is evident towards us in Isaiah 57:15 I dwell in the high and holy place with him also that is of a contrite heart(repentant) and lowly (humble)  in that place He also wants to repair, restore that person. their spirit, for God, is loving and merciful towards us.
When a person is suffering in their body from an accident or a disease that is life-threatening they go into surgery in a completely clean and sanitised room for the work of repairing the body to take place, this is the same for the heart and the spirit of man we need to enter the Holy presence of God to be fixed and how grateful is that one that comes out of surgery and in time recovers, how much more grateful are we to be when we know that if it was not for Jesus we would not have access to the Father. Amen
Lord, we raise a Hallelujah to you who is seated on the throne who is high and lifted up we exalt you and bless your Holy name and we thank you for your dear Son Jesus who died for me and who has given me life by His shed blood and may the way back to you. Amen
FRIDAY 9th OCTOBER – Matthew 5:10
Mathew 5:10 Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, For theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
God is faithful and true to his word for Blessed are those who know
Who makes us rich in spirit,  
who know Him as comforter,
who know that He is our righteousness
who receive His mercies daily
who know they are washed and pure in heart and who are walking in peace. 
When we looked at the goodness of God and all that he has done for us and how much more he wants to do for the whole of mankind, it really highlights the darkness of this world and the love of God towards mankind – the reckless abandon in which God pursued us from the fall till the day we all receive Jesus.
Look at all that Israel went through and how meticulously God recorded everything through the faithful ones that served him along the way…  And how so many suffered and died throughout the journey all to preserve the family line that would bring forth the King of kings and the Lord of lords Jesus Christ?
Let us turn our attention to those who are in need of our prayers, those who are being persecuted for their faith, all around the world today for sharing the Gospel and doing good in countries and communities where so many people are literally in survival mode, and probably don’t know any other mode of living.
Father Abba we come before you today with grateful hearts and praises in our mouths for you alone are worthy. Father, we take our places as watchmen upon the walls of your kingdom and we stand in prayer interceding for our brothers and sisters in Christ who are being persecuted for their faith. 
Father, we ask in Jesus’ name that you would strengthen them with Joy giving hope to all those around them. Father, we ask according to Ephesians 6:13 so that they may be able to stand and having done all to stand they continue to stand.
Father, we like the centurion that recognised Christ’s authority. We take that authority and we declare Peace be to all who are suffering according to Isaiah 57:19.peace to him that is far off.
We plead the blood of Jesus over all whose hands are firmly upon the plough in the midst of adversity.
May they remain meek, full of your spirit, comforted as they comfort those who may be mourning.
Fill them daily as they remain hungry and thirsty for your righteousness.
Continue to shower them with mercy as they extend mercy to others.
We declare that no weapon formed against them shall prosper and every tongue that rises against them we condemn and having condemned them we ask Lord that you would bless them.
We ask the Lord that you would show favour to those serving you in the midst of the battle wherever they are and that even their enemies would show them favour. Release your warring angels to protect them. Lord we ask you in the name of Jesus and we thank you and give you all the praise in the matchless name of Jesus
thursDAY 8th OCTOBER – Matthew 5:9
Matthew 5:9 – Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called the sons of God.
 As simple as this statement appears to mean, it requires us to do our part – not only have and maintain peace but we are to make peace. This is clearly a task for every believer to carry out in our day to day living.
However, you may say well we have one who has gone before us, demonstrating peace and His authority, power, and strength in peace.
God also promises peace. Let us look at God’s word concerning peace.
John 20:19 – Peace be unto you. What a great place to start with a blessing.for others.
Numbers 6:26 – The Lord turns his face towards you and gives you peace.
Isaiah 57:19 – Peace to him that is far off.
Who do we look to, to guide us to show us the way that we can trust?     
Isaiah 9:6 Father, the prince of peace.
1 Corinthians 7:15 God hath called us to peace
Hebrews 12:14 Follow peace with all men.
We who are blessed to be a blessing are blessed with peace, and we are to walk in peace, to take peace into all the world to demonstrate the love of God as Christ did in peace –  to hold fast to our peace for in peace we have clarity and purity having received mercy, which enabled us to be washed and cleansed and filled with Peace baring peace…  wherever we go changing spiritual climates and atmospheres.
How the beatitudes all roll one into another, one in the same the pure will see God demonstrating the peace of God being called sons of God. Amen 
Father, we praise you and glorify you, we bless your Holy name we thank you for giving us your Peace, your peace that at times confounds us but always keeps us in touch with you and enables those whose lives we share and touch can come into contact with you.
Father, we ask that you would continue to keep us in your perfect peace in Jesus name
WEDNESDAY 7th OCTOBER – Matthew 5:8
 Matthew 5:8 – Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.
 Wow, what a Promise! The pure in heart will see God. God who inhabits the praises of His people. God who loves us just the way we are but who loves us too much to let us stay that way.
How can we remain the same once we let His only begotten Son into our lives, into our hearts – it’s impossible to remain the same even the most stubborn will change…  Eventually, it may not be pretty but we will change.
The pure in heart will see God.
How does one become pure in heart? It’s through a process. A diamond when first found looks like large bath salts, but then it gets into the hand of the diamond cutter and after much time cutting away the roughness it starts to emerge as a thing of pure beauty – straight edges, smooth sides, polished and flawless, able to filter light and make it look better than it did before it was first touched. The Holy Spirit of God does the same to us if we would let Him.
God removes the Stony heart of man and gives him a heart of flesh. but we still have work to do ourselves
 Isaiah 1:16
“Wash your selves make yourselves clean: put away the evil of your doings from before your eyes” Jesus said in Matthew 23:26  (as vessels).
We are to clean the inside of the cup and dish, and then the outside will be clean. As we learn to stand in victory we begin to live as overcomers becoming more like Jesus – pure in heart. When Jesus bore our sins on the cross of Calvary, God could not look upon, and at that moment  Jesus was alone and cried out to the Father.
Matthew 27:46. “My God, my, God, why have you forsaken me?”
Here we see the importance of having a pure heart. God sees our hearts before we see Him and He hears the cries of our hearts. A pure heart like a pure Diamond will enable God’s light to shine in and through us!
Prayer – Let us pray that simple prayer of Davids.  
In the name of Jesus create in me a clean heart O God and renew a right Spirit in me. Wash me, cleanse me, purify me, make my heart as white as snow. Create in me a clean heart O God and renew a right spirit in me.
tuesday 6th OCTOBER – Matthew 5:7
Mathew 5:7 – Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.
His mercies are new every day. 
God and Jesus who are merciful towards us, we who were of the sinful nature, Jesus gave all of His substance, His life, His blood at Calvary to the unbeliever –  the truth of the sacrifice that Jesus made for us is only realised when we stand before the Cross.
Looking at the life of Jesus and all that He demonstrated of the Father’s love towards us – here we see the measure of who we are, and it is here that we see what the Devil couldn’t see. MERCY. The forgiveness of God given to all who truly repent but refused by those who deny the truth…
Jesus the same yesterday, today and tomorrow,
for He is eternally King of Kings. Lord of Lords.
Prince of Peace.
Father, we thank you for Blessing us daily with bread and water and that You keep us safe in the midst of troubles.
We thank you that you pour out new mercies each and every day and that we can be merciful to others.
In Jesus’ name, we ask that you fill us afresh with your Holy Spirit today, in the understanding that we can do nothing without you.in Jesus’ name. Amen 
Monday 5th OCTOBER – Matthew 5:6
Matthew 5:6 – Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.
While we live in these times of shaking and darkness and increasing lawlessness, where righteousness has become unrighteousness and justice has become injustice, where truth is being outlawed as a lie and the lie the truth motivated by anger and greed, fuelled by lust. and pride.
For the believer this environment only causes the believer to become hungry and thirsty for the righteousness of GOD – where do we find our spiritual food? In the presence and righteousness of God is where we will be filed!
Our God is a strong tower, His word our daily bread and so what the father gives is already blessed. He says that he will bless our bread and water and take sickness from in the midst of us, Hallelujah.
Blessing upon blessing. Blessed to be a blessing!
Father, thank you that we are not sufficient in what we can provide for ourselves, but our sufficiency is in and from you Jehovah, El Shaddai the God who is more than enough. Amen
Friday 2nd OCTOBER – Matthew 5:5
Matthew 5:5 – Blessed are the meek, for they will  inherit the earth
Meekness is a fruit of the Spirit and an attribute of God Almighty Himself –  and important to being in the likeness of His image and a true witness, this characteristic will largely determine how much peace and contentment we have in our lives and how well we do during trials.
We are called to be kings and priests in the Kingdom of God.
King David a man after God’s Own Heart and considered to be a forerunner of Jesus Christ.
David displayed great meekness in His life, having great power but keeping it under control because ultimately he knew that it was God who gave it to him and ultimately therefore it was God who was in control.
Great was David’s confidence in God that He held nothing back from God. David displayed his meekness when he showed mercy towards King Saul who wanted to take his life. David said “touch not God’s anointed”
 The meek will inherit the earth.
Through many trials of war, David possessed much land and was at peace with his neighbors on all sides and that peace remained for 40 years.
 It is fundamental to grasp the first beatitude to truly walk in meekness, for we must have not only an awareness of who we are in Christ but be resolute in that but like David ultimately who we are in the face of God’s greatness.
The fear of the Lord. Reverence
 Wait on the Lord. Obedience.
 Meekness. Gentleness towards God and our brothers and Sisters.
 These three will gain the promise and fulfill the command to OCCUPY the earth.
THURSDAY 1st OCTOBER – Matthew 5:4 
The Comforter Promised
Matthew 5:4
Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
The beauty of God’s heart towards mankind His creation is absolutely amazing, for not only did He send His only begotten Son to show us how to live but to also die for us taking the curse that was upon us upon Himself. Praise God.

Jesus promised never to leave us or forsake us but He still had to leave and send the Holy Spirit whom he called the comforter and the eternal Spirit of God who comforts us in times of grief.

Psalm 30:5  – Weeping may last for the night but there is a song of joy in the morning.

The night figuratively speaking the night represents a dark period and the dawn or morning the end of that time and the comforter is the one that sees us through for it is the Father’s desire that we all having received His Son into our lives believing that Jesus has taken all our suffering upon Himself relieving us of having to endure for more than a night. Beautiful isn’t it when we simply see what God has done for us already. Our time is limited and God doesn’t want us to spend it in a way that renders us useless to do the things of God but let us remember the word in – “A time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn, and a time to dance.” – Ecclesiastes 3:4


So let us catch the unforced rhythms of God’s grace and dance the dance of life and sing to the melodies that he plays over us from the symphonies of heaven and join with angels giving praises to our God.
Wednesday 23rd September – Matthew 5:3 

Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven. 

We are taught from the word of God that as we receive Jesus the son of God into our (whole) heart and lives to make Him Lord of our lives, citizens of the Kingdom of God, we become coheirs in the inheritance of Abraham and also Co Labourers

What a magnificent Blessing. How the word addresses position as well as the condition at its root, the spirit not the soul. It is here that we first meet the Lord in our lowest state and it is here that we are transformed. Our spirits are poor, wretched, broken, and sinful, and even in this lowly state blinded by pride masked by false humility and all masking deep-rooted fears of the unknown and the truth of our frailties. But God’s desires are to restore us back to our originally intended position before the fall of Adam and mankind

So what do we stand to gain as any man would ask having been told that he has an inheritance

A new spirit, new hope, and a true love. 

The answer is so magnificent that to dwell on all that one gains would be an insult and a shame to not first know the costFor Jesus the greatest gift of all, the inheritance includes kinship with the Son of God

John 3:16 For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son that whosoever believeth on Him shall have life and life abundantly

The abundant life in the kingdom and all that is available within it being at our disposal remembering to ask in the name of the Lord Jesus. But it is the new Spirit, the new nature that God supplies NOT the OLDGod desires to fulfill the desires of our hearts knowing there is nothing in the inheritance that he has not already made provision for!

Ask and it shall be given unto you – Mathew 7:7

Friday 18 September – 1 Peter 5:5-7

 For God sets Himself against the proud (the insolent, the overbearing, the disdainful, the presumptuous, the boastful)—[and He opposes, frustrates, and defeats them], but gives grace (favor, blessing) to the humble. Therefore humble yourselves [demote, lower yourselves in your own estimation] under the mighty hand of God, that in due time He may exalt you, Casting the whole of your care [all your anxieties, all your worries, all your concerns, once and for all] on Him, for He cares for you affectionately and cares about you watchfully.

Grace is the power of God to change everything in our life! We all face situations that are too much for us to figure out, that are in need of God’s touch. Notice the beginning of verse 7, God gives us the answer to receiving his grace. We are to simply cast our cares and worries to Him. We live in a society where to worry and take on our burdens is considered responsible, and of course we are not to be unwise and reckless, but God looks at our worry and calls it pride! It’s a tough reality to accept, but worry is us saying, I can take care of this God, I trust myself to carry this weight, I don’t think You’re quite capable for this problem. Think of a situation that weighs you down today. God’s grace is the power to change that situation around! God is inviting us to stop trying and start trusting! When we humble ourselves, trust God and stop yielding to fear, His grace begins to flow!

Monday 3rd August – LUKE 6:27-36  

“But I say to you who hear: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28 bless those who curse you, and pray for those who spitefully use you. 29 To him who strikes you on the one cheek, offer the other also. And from him who takes away your cloak, do not withhold your tunic either.30 Give to everyone who asks of you. And from him who takes away your goods do not ask them back.31 And just as you want men to do to you, you also do to them likewise.32 “But if you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. 33 And if you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners do the same. 34 And if you lend to those from whom you hope to receive back, what credit is that to you? For even sinners lend to sinners to receive as much back. 35 But love your enemies, do good, and lend, hoping for nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High. For He is kind to the unthankful and evil. 36 Therefore be merciful, just as your Father also is merciful.”

Here’s a real challenge for today…the Bible says, “Treat others just as you want to be treated!”  That is in actual fact, the first rule of relationships – Find out what you want and give it to others. It’s that powerful spiritual law of Sowing and Reaping and it works in every area of life. So go out there today and give a little love and kindness…even where it’s not deserved, and sow some good seeds. You will be amazed at the harvest…God will cause grace and favour to overflow towards you!

FRIDAY 31st July – PROVERBS 29:1-8

“He who is often rebuked, and hardens his neck, Will suddenly be destroyed, and that without remedy. When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice; But when a wicked man rules, the people groan. Whoever loves wisdom makes his father rejoice, but a companion of harlots wastes his wealth. The king establishes the land by justice, but he who receives bribes overthrows it. A man who flatters his neighbour spreads a net for his feet. By transgression an evil man is snared, but the righteous sings and rejoices. The righteous considers the cause of the poor,
But the wicked does not understand such knowledge. Scoffers set a city aflame, but wise men turn away wrath.”

As a pastor of some 28 years’ experience now, I have learned a few things, and none of them is more pertinent than what I am going to share with you today. It has taken me many years to realize this, and it has literally transformed my relationships. Here it is…Most often, angry people, simply need to be heard! Learning to de-escalate anger is a skill we all need. I have found that if you just give people room enough to talk…even if you disagree with them…if you  just listen to what they have to say and don’t invalidate their feelings, the atmosphere inevitably changes and you can diffuse potentially explosive situations in which no one wins and that resolve nothing. Try it today…be a peacemaker (Matthew 5:9).

Thursday 30th July – COLOSSIANS 3:1-13

“If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory.Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. Because of these things the wrath of God is coming upon the sons of disobedience, in which you yourselves once walked when you lived in them. But now you yourselves are to put off all these: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy language out of your mouth. Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old man with his deeds, 10 and have put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him, 11 where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcised nor uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave nor free, but Christ is all and in all. 12 Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; 13 bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do.”

It is an unavoidable fact, no matter how we try to insulate ourselves, that people hurt us. They hurt us with their words, their thoughtless actions or attitudes…none of us gets through life unscathed! Often these hurts are unintentional, but that makes them no less painful and sometimes even debilitating. Unforgiveness is such a destructive thing. It leads to bitterness and anger, which as a consequence cause us, in turn, to hurt those around us. As believers, our lives should be characterised by forgiveness. It all starts by realizing that the power to forgive comes from God! Each time you are hurt…hand it over to Him. That doesn’t minimize your hurt…in fact it acknowledges it…and that’s the first step to healing! When you bring it before God and surrender it to Him, His perspective will empower you to let go…and once you release the offence…you will be free!

Wednesday 29th July – DEUTERONOMY 2:1-7

“Then we turned and journeyed into the wilderness of the Way of the Red Sea, as the Lord spoke to me, and we skirted Mount Seir for many days. “And the Lord spoke to me, saying: ‘You have skirted this mountain long enough; turn northward.And command the people, saying, “You are about to pass through the territory of your brethren, the descendants of Esau, who live in Seir; and they will be afraid of you. Therefore watch yourselves carefully. Do not meddle with them, for I will not give you any of their land, no, not so much as one footstep, because I have given Mount Seir to Esau as a possession. You shall buy food from them with money, that you may eat; and you shall also buy water from them with money, that you may drink. “For the Lord your God has blessed you in all the work of your hand. He knows your trudging through this great wilderness. These forty years the Lord your God has been with you; you have lacked nothing.”’

What a powerful spiritual key we have here! How do we attract God’s blessing? By inviting His presence into every part of our life, every element of our day, no matter how routine or mundane it seems. That means your work, your finances, your family, your dreams and fears…everything! You will be amazed at the difference, when you bring God into the equation. The more you submit everything to Him, the more you will begin to see things as He sees them and the result will be that you begin to approach everything, even your biggest challenges, from a position of strength rather than weakness!

tuesday 28th July – PSALM 119: 105-112; 129-130

105 Your word is a lamp to my feet And a light to my path.106 I have sworn and confirmed that I will keep Your righteous judgments. 07 I am afflicted very much; revive me, O Lord, according to Your word. 108 Accept, I pray, the freewill offerings of my mouth, O Lord, and teach me Your judgments. 109 My life is continually in my hand, yet I do not forget Your law. 110 The wicked have laid a snare for me, yet I have not strayed from Your precepts. 111 Your testimonies I have taken as a heritage forever, for they are the rejoicing of my heart. 112 I have inclined my heart to perform Your statutes forever, to the very end. 129 Your testimonies are wonderful; Therefore my soul keeps them.
130 The entrance of Your words gives light; it gives understanding to the simple.”

How gracious is our God! He could have just left us to figure things out for ourselves…but he didn’t. He chose to speak to us…and he chose to use a language of love we can all understand…no matter our age or IQ. In his Word you can find a source of wisdom that has withstood the test of time. God can and does indeed speak to us in many different ways, but His primary way is through Scripture. Make His Word your starting place…in all things. Read it, meditate on it, pray it…and discover His voice, today, for yourself!

monday 27th July – LUKE 4:27-31

“But I say to you who hear: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28 bless those who curse you, and pray for those who spitefully use you. 29 To him who strikes you on the one cheek, offer the other also. And from him who takes away your cloak, do not withhold your tunic either.30 Give to everyone who asks of you. And from him who takes away your goods do not ask them back.31 And just as you want men to do to you, you also do to them likewise.”

One of the things that I have learned, after more than 25 years of pastoral ministry, working with all kinds of people, is that in many ways, we are all alike! We all want to be cared for or cared about. We all want to be respected. We all want to be listened to and understood. We all want to belong. We all want freedom and opportunity. Well…the first rule of relationship is this: Find out what you want and give it to others! That’s a powerful spiritual principle! It’s the law of sowing and reaping…and it can be life transforming. Try it…it really works!

friday 24th July – 1 PETER 4:1-10

“Therefore, since Christ suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves also with the same mind, for he who has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin, that he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh for the lusts of men, but for the will of God. For we have spent enough of our past lifetime in doing the will of the Gentiles—when we walked in lewdness, lusts, drunkenness, revelries, drinking parties, and abominable idolatries. In regard to these, they think it strange that you do not run with them in the same flood of dissipation, speaking evil of you. They will give an account to Him who is ready to judge the living and the dead. For this reason the gospel was preached also to those who are dead, that they might be judged according to men in the flesh, but live according to God in the spirit.
But the end of all things is at hand; therefore be serious and watchful in your prayers. And above all things have fervent love for one another, for “love will cover a multitude of sins.” Be hospitable to one another without grumbling. 10 As each one has received a gift, minister it to one another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.”

Do you know, that God has designed you in such a way that you bring something special and unique into the lives of others? So spend some time today considering what is your God-given uniqueness and look for ways you can use your strengths to add richness to the people around you. The truth is, that people are hungry for what you provide…so show them a “slice” of God they can find no other way!

Thursday 23rd July – JAMES 1:2-12

My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing. If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways. Let the lowly brother glory in his exaltation, 10 but the rich in his humiliation, because as a flower of the field he will pass away. 11 For no sooner has the sun risen with a burning heat than it withers the grass; its flower falls, and its beautiful appearance perishes. So the rich man also will fade away in his pursuits. 12 Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him.”

We all face times  in life, when it seems that everything in our circumstances is telling us that god has forgotten us and doesn’t really care what we’re going through. In fact, we need to be prepared for such times! During these times we need to press forward, for they are opportunities for great growth in our faith. How do we do that?…By making a decision that we will not be moved by what we see or feel, but by what we know! God’s love never fails! He never leaves us nor forsakes us and His mercies are new every morning!

wednesday 22nd July – JOSHUA 24:11-15

“Then you went over the Jordan and came to Jericho. And the men of Jericho fought against you—also the Amorites, the Perizzites, the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Girgashites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites. But I delivered them into your hand. 12 I sent the hornet before you which drove them out from before you, also the two kings of the Amorites, but not with your sword or with your bow. 13 I have given you a land for which you did not labor, and cities which you did not build, and you dwell in them; you eat of the vineyards and olive groves which you did not plant.’

14 “Now therefore, fear the Lord, serve Him in sincerity and in truth, and put away the gods which your fathers served on the other side of the River and in Egypt. Serve the Lord! 15 And if it seems evil to you to serve the Lord, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”


Many Christians do not see their homes to be as sacred as the church. They have undervalued and underestimated God’s perspective and heart for the home. For many Christians and their families all spirituality is exercised IN church, all prayer is IN church, all teaching is IN church – and not in the home. In too many Christian homes there has been an abdication of responsibility for godly leadership, family worship and spiritual discipleship. The challenges of Joshua’s day are no less than those we live among today. If we want to see God’s blessing on our lives, we have to choose to live according to God’s design for us in our homes and families.

Tuesday 21st July – PHILIPPIANS 4:1-6

“Therefore, my beloved and longed-for brethren, my joy and crown, so stand fast in the Lord, beloved. I implore Euodia and I implore Syntyche to be of the same mind in the Lord. And I urge you also, true companion, help these women who laboured with me in the gospel, with Clement also, and the rest of my fellow workers, whose names are in the Book of Life. Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice! Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand.Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God.”

As I was thinking on these verses, particularly (verse 6), I was reminded again of the fact, that prayer can move the world! Literally! Why? Because prayer is a direct address to God. The Holy Spirit dropped these thoughts into my heart…let me just share them as they came to me. Prayer affects people by affecting God. Prayer moves people because it moves God to move them. Prayer moves the hand that moves the world! The promises of god are so great to those who truly pray, that when he puts himself into the hands of his praying ones, it almost staggers our faith and leaves us amazed.

monday 20th July – JOHN 14:9-14

“Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you so long, and yet you have not known Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; so how can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? 10 Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father in Me? The words that I speak to you I do not speak on My own authority; but the Father who dwells in Me does the works. 11 Believe Me that I am in the Father and the Father in Me, or else believe Me for the sake of the works themselves. 12 “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father. 13 And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 If you ask anything in My name, I will do it.”

In our legal system we have what is called a “power of attorney.” It allows an individual who owns the rights to something to give control over it to someone else. That person has the same authority as the owner, just as if the owner himself were acting. When Jesus promises to do what we ask, He gives us His authority to make requests of the Father. It is as though Jesus Himself were making the request. And so, prayers “in His name” have absolutely awesome power. When you ask something of God in Jesus’ name, it is important for your request to reflect His will, not yours. As you read the Bible, as you pray, as you worship God, speak to Him about your needs and then listen to His answers as He speaks to your spirit. You can then pray with confidence and genuine faith that His revealed will for you be done. You will begin to see real answers!

friday 17th July – 1 THESSALONIANS 5:14-23

“Now we exhort you, brethren, warn those who are unruly, comfort the fainthearted, uphold the weak, be patient with all. 15 See that no one renders evil for evil to anyone, but always pursue what is good both for yourselves and for all. 16 Rejoice always, 17 pray without ceasing, 18 in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. 19 Do not quench the Spirit. 20 Do not despise prophecies. 21 Test all things; hold fast what is good.22 Abstain from every form of evil. 23 Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely; and may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. 24 He who calls you is faithful, who also will do it.”

People in the past who were very successful in prayer, who made big things happen, who moved God to do great things, were those who surrendered completely to God in their praying. My challenge to you today, is this; God requires complete devotion when we pray. He requires whole-hearted people through whom he can work out His purposes and plans. So here’s my thought…just let me say it as it is; no person with a divided allegiance to God, the world, and self, can do the praying that is needed!

thursday 16th July – PSALMs 27:1—7

“Do not fret because of evildoers,
Nor be envious of the workers of iniquity.For they shall soon be cut down like the grass, and wither as the green herb. Trust in the Lord, and do good; dwell in the land, and feed on His faithfulness. Delight yourself also in the Lord, and He shall give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord, trust also in Him, and He shall bring it to pass. He shall bring forth your righteousness as the light, and your justice as the noonday. Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for Him; do not fret because of him who prospers in his way, because of the man who brings wicked schemes to pass.”

Faith often requires patiently waiting before God and being prepared to wait for His seeming delays in answering  prayer. It’s so important that we do not allow our faith to waiver or become disheartened because prayer is not immediately answered. Real faith takes God at His Word and lets Him take what time he chooses in fulfilling His purposes and in carrying out His work. Remember, even as I reminded you in Sunday’s message, every delay has a divine purpose. God is never early nor is He ever late; He is always perfectly on time! So learn to trust Him…you know you can, for He has never failed you yet!

Wednesday 15th July – Luke 11:1

“Lord, teach us to pray”

I believe that as we participate in this time of prayer and fasting as a church that there are some key prayer principles we need to remind ourselves of. Here’s the first one: True prayer involves knowing beforehand what to ask for. You see…praying, is asking for something definite. We need to be reading the word of God to discover His thoughts and Kingdom agenda and waiting on Him, by listening for His still small voice and those promptings of the Holy Spirit. He is our Helper in the place of prayer. “ Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.27 Now He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God” (Romans 8:26-27).

TuesDAY 14th July – 1 TIMOTHY 4:1-12

“Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons, speaking lies in hypocrisy, having their own conscience seared with a hot iron, forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from foods which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and know the truth. For every creature of God is good, and nothing is to be refused if it is received with thanksgiving; for it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer.If you instruct the brethren in these things, you will be a good minister of Jesus Christ, nourished in the words of faith and of the good doctrine which you have carefully followed. But reject profane and old wives’ fables, and exercise yourself toward godliness. For bodily exercise profits a little, but godliness is profitable for all things, having promise of the life that now is and of that which is to come. This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptance. 10 For to this end we both labour and suffer reproach, because we trust in the living God, who is the Saviour of all men, especially of those who believe. 11 These things command and teach. 12 Let no one despise your youth, but be an example to the believers in word, in conduct, in love, in spirit, in faith, in purity.”

You are a living testament to the God who dwells in you. Every day, beginning today, connect every part of your life to God and His purpose and as you do, people will begin to notice the change in you! Your life will become a witness to the grace and goodness of God, and will point others to Him. Remember…you are the only “sermon” many of them will hear. As you live, as the Word of God encourages you to, they will be inspired by the way that you trust Him, in good times and bad and they will be drawn to you and your faith in Him! So pray today…”God…I need you to fill every part of my life, so I can be a light to others…Amen!”

MONDAY 13th July – REVELATION 3:7-11

“And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write, ‘These things says He who is holy, He who is true, “He who has the key of David, He who opens and no one shuts, and shuts and no one opens”:  “I know your works. See, I have set before you an open door, and no one can shut it; for you have a little strength, have kept My word, and have not denied My name. Indeed I will make those of the synagogue of Satan, who say they are Jews and are not, but lie—indeed I will make them come and worship before your feet, and to know that I have loved you. 10 Because you have kept My command to persevere, I also will keep you from the hour of trial which shall come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth. 11 Behold, I am coming quickly! Hold fast what you have, that no one may take your crown.”

The word for you today…is “HOLD ON!”  Sometimes that feels easier said than done…especially when we find ourselves in the  middle of a storm of storms, or facing a fiery trial we can’t see our way out of. But when it seems that people and circumstances have conspired to discourage us, let’s always remember that the Lord has promised that He will never let us go…that He will hold on to us, if we keep holding on to Him!

FRIDAY 10th July – 1 CORINTHIANS 16:1-14

 Now concerning the collection for the saints, as I have given orders to the churches of Galatia, so you must do also: On the first day of the week let each one of you lay something aside, storing up as he may prosper, that there be no collections when I come. And when I come, whomever you approve by your letters I will send to bear your gift to Jerusalem. But if it is fitting that I go also, they will go with me. Now I will come to you when I pass through Macedonia (for I am passing through Macedonia). And it may be that I will remain, or even spend the winter with you, that you may send me on my journey, wherever I go. For I do not wish to see you now on the way; but I hope to stay a while with you, if the Lord permits. But I will tarry in Ephesus until Pentecost. For a great and effective door has opened to me, and there are many adversaries. 10 And if Timothy comes, see that he may be with you without fear; for he does the work of the Lord, as I also do. 11 Therefore let no one despise him. But send him on his journey in peace, that he may come to me; for I am waiting for him with the brethren. 12 Now concerning our brother Apollos, I strongly urged him to come to you with the brethren, but he was quite unwilling to come at this time; however, he will come when he has a convenient time. 13 Watch, stand fast in the faith, be brave, be strong. 14 Let all that you do be done with love.”

The Bible rings out with the truth…that “God is love” (1John 4:8). As believers, there is a single guiding principle to help us govern our lives and that principle is LOVE! Love for God, first, then to love our neighbour as ourselves (Mark 12:30-31). If you are facing a dilemma or a difficult decision, it is always wise to bring love into the equation. You will find that as you follow the most loving course of action, everything else will become much clearer!

THURSDAY 9th July – PROVERBS 2:1-6

“My son, if you receive my words, And treasure my commands within you, So that you incline your ear to wisdom, And apply your heart to understanding; Yes, if you cry out for discernment, And lift up your voice for understanding, If you seek her as silver, And search for her as for hidden treasures; Then you will understand the fear of the Lord, And find the knowledge of God. For the Lord gives wisdom; From His mouth come knowledge and understanding.”

There is only one source of absolute and reliable truth…and that is the Lord! Take courage today in the realization that He can lead you, through the abiding and indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit, through every situation you may face. He can navigate you, even through the most difficult of decisions. So always remember…when you don’t know which way to turn…look up!

Wednesday 8th July – ECCLESIASTES 3:1-11

“To everything there is a season, A time for every purpose under heaven: A time to be born, And a time to die; A time to plant, And a time to pluck what is planted; A time to kill, And a time to heal; A time to break down, And a time to build up; A time to weep, And a time to laugh; A time to mourn, And a time to dance; A time to cast away stones, And a time to gather stones; A time to embrace, And a time to refrain from embracing; A time to gain, And a time to lose; A time to keep, And a time to throw away; A time to tear, And a time to sew; A time to keep silence, And a time to speak; A time to love, And a time to hate; A time of war, And a time of peace.What profit has the worker from that in which he labours? 10 I have seen the God-given task with which the sons of men are to be occupied. 11 He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also He has put eternity in their hearts, except that no one can find out the work that God does from beginning to end.”

Whether we are looking forward or looking back, we cannot but come to the awesome realization that God is in control and we are not! What comfort and courage we derive from that! While we are struggling or battling to make sense of things of things and find our way in a world that seems so confused…how great is it to know, that our God is good, righteous and just. That even though we may be prone to making mistakes, we can put out trust in the One who never makes mistakes! That not only can we entrust out eternity to Him…but also our today!

TUESDAY 7th July – ROMANS 12:1-2

 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.”

We have an incredible machine inside our head called ‘brain.’ You may have a high IQ, or average or even below average intelligence but your brain is still incredible. Did you know that inside the skull of your head is more information stored than in the national library? That is really incredible for a very small machine that only weighs for about 3 pounds. Psychologists tell us that each person has about ten thousand thoughts per day. Did you realize that many thoughts go on inside your head each day? Unbelievable! It means that we have many chances of having good thoughts every day. So if you want to change the outcome of your life . . . change your way of thinking! (Proverbs 23:7) says, “For as he thinks within himself, so he is.” (Philippians 2:5) says, “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:”  If you find that you’re not the person you want to be, you can blame your circumstances all day long, it will never change anything. Try substituting negative thoughts with positive ones. And do you know what?…If you’ll concentrate on what’s right in your life instead of what is wrong…what’s good instead of what’s bad …what’s sweet instead of what’s bitter…you’ll find that you’re a totally different person…and the only thing that changed . . . was you! (Philippians 4:8)

monday 6th July – LUKE 5:1-11

“So it was, as the multitude pressed about Him to hear the word of God, that He stood by the Lake of Gennesaret, and saw two boats standing by the lake; but the fishermen had gone from them and were washing their nets. Then He got into one of the boats, which was Simon’s, and asked him to put out a little from the land. And He sat down and taught the multitudes from the boat. When He had stopped speaking, He said to Simon, “Launch out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch.” 5 But Simon answered and said to Him, “Master, we have toiled all night and caught nothing; nevertheless at Your word I will let down the net.” 6 And when they had done this, they caught a great number of fish, and their net was breaking. 7 So they signalled to their partners in the other boat to come and help them. And they came and filled both the boats, so that they began to sink. 8 When Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, “Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord!” 9 For he and all who were with him were astonished at the catch of fish which they had taken; 10 and so also were James and John, the sons of Zebedee, who were partners with Simon. And Jesus said to Simon, “Do not be afraid. From now on you will catch men.” 11 So when they had brought their boats to land, they forsook all and followed Him.”

I want to share a powerful and potentially life-changing principle with you today: 1. To turn your failures into success, INVITE JESUS INTO YOUR BOAT (v. 3-4) 2. To turn your failures into success, ADMIT YOUR OWN EFFORTS HAVE FAILED (V.5)
“A man who refuses to admit his mistakes can never be successful. But if he confesses and forsakes them, he gets another chance.” (Proverbs 28:13 LB) 3. To turn your failures into success, OBEY WHATEVER JESUS TELLS YOU TO DO…“Nevertheless at Your word Lord…” Follow His instructions even when it doesn’t make sense. 4. To turn your failures into success, FOLLOW JESUS INTO HIS DIRECTION (Vs.6-11) …” So when they had brought their boats to land, they forsook all and followed Him.” God’s work done in God’s way will not lack his supply. So remember, as you face the challenges and perhaps frustrations of your day…“You will not succeed by your own strength or power, but by my Spirit says the Lord.” (Zechariah 4:6)

Friday 3rd July – MARK 4:35-41

“On the same day, when evening had come, He said to them, “Let us cross over to the other side.”36 Now when they had left the multitude, they took Him along in the boat as He was. And other little boats were also with Him. 37 And a great windstorm arose, and the waves beat into the boat, so that it was already filling. 38 But He was in the stern, asleep on a pillow. And they awoke Him and said to Him, “Teacher, do You not care that we are perishing?”39 Then He arose and rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, “Peace, be still!” And the wind ceased and there was a great calm. 40 But He said to them, “Why are you so fearful? How is it that you have no faith?” 41 And they feared exceedingly, and said to one another, “Who can this be, that even the wind and the sea obey Him!”

We need to see that fear is the opposite of faith. Over and over we are commanded, “Fear not!” God said, “Fear not, Joshua, be strong and of good courage.” The Lord speaks to us and says, “Fear not, for I have redeemed thee.” Over and over, Jesus says, “Fear not.” And here, He asks His disciples, “Why do you fear?” Our question, often, to Jesus is, “Do you not care?” His reply to us is, “Do you not have faith?” This is the key. While we say, “Lord, don’t you care about my situation?” He says, “Child, don’t you trust me in it?”
Faith drives out fear. The Bible teaches that we have not been given a spirit of fear. The only reason we ever question God is because of fear, or a lack of faith. They are really the same many times. When we trust God, we have no reason to fear. For we know that as long as we are in His hands we are safe. And we trust that whatever He deems best for us is truly best. There is no need to fear when He is on our side. Oh, that we may say, like the Psalmist, “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for Thou art with me.” That is faith. That is where the Lord wants us to be!

THursday 2nd July – 1 PETER 1:14-16; 2:12

“As obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts, as in your ignorance; 15 but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, 16 because it is written, “Be holy, for I am holy.”   “12 Having your conduct honourable among the Gentiles, that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may, by your good works which they observe, glorify God in the day of visitation.

George Barna did a survey and wrote a book about the status of today’s church, and it was shocking. He found that the divorce rate for non-Christians was 23%, and the divorce rate for Born Again Christians was 27%. That’s right; the Christians had a higher divorce rate than the non-Christian. When the question was asked, “Have you given money to a homeless or a poor person in the past year?” The result was Christians 24%, non-Christians 34%. What’s wrong? The Church is called to stand out. Jesus said in (Matt. 5:14-15) “You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house.”  Let’s remember…we are called to be holy, set apart…we are called to shine, to give light to this world darkened by sin. I hope that today, the Lord has found each of us striving for Holiness.

Wednesday 1st July –EPHESIANS 3:17-21

Most people never take advantage of God’s abundant resources. Eph. 3:20 in the Amplified Version says, “God is able to do superabundantly, far over and above, all that we dare ask or think. Infinitely beyond our highest prayers, desires, thought, hopes, or dreams.” We never tap into the tremendous resources that God has made available to us. (Matthew 9:29) Jesus  said: “According to you faith, it will be done to you.” The key to unlock all God wants to do in your life is faith! The Law of Expectations says that, basically, we get what we expect out of life. We tend to see what we expect to see, we tend to feel what we expect to feel, we tend to act the way we expect to act, and eventually, we tend to achieve what we expect to achieve. Your expectations influence your happiness, they influence your health. Your expectations influence your relationships.  When you expect the best, you’re honouring God. It also increases your ability when you’re expecting the best. Athletes know that the winning edge is attitude, not ability. It’s how you see it. That’s why it’s so important to start your day with faith…because according to your faith, it will be done to you!

tuesday 30th June – ROMANS 8:22-27

22 For we know that the whole creation groans and labours with birth pangs together until now. 23 Not only that, but we also who have the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, eagerly waiting for the adoption, the redemption of our body. 24 For we were saved in this hope, but hope that is seen is not hope; for why does one still hope for what he sees? 25 But if we hope for what we do not see, we eagerly wait for it with perseverance. 26 Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.27 Now He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God.”

Have you ever wanted to pray, but you felt so distraught, so uptight, so upset that words just wouldn’t come? Maybe your hurt was “too deep for words” and all you could do was to look upward and say, “Aaargh!” Now imagine God looking from Heaven and replying, “I got it—I understand completely.” That’s the basic message of verses 26-27. Paul’s been explaining how “we groan inwardly as we wait” for what God’s going to do in our lives (verse 23). We can expect God’s support in our struggles. This prayerful groaning isn’t only about “speaking in tongues”, but about intense, non-verbal communication. We don’t have to always pray with words—we can communicate through silence, through feelings, and by focusing on God without having to say a word. Inwardly we groan, and God hears it; He catches what no one else can comprehend. He understands our pain and longings. We don’t always know why we hurt—God knows even that. When we’re about to pray and we’re thinking, “Why do I feel so crummy?” -God already understands. As you pray today…spend a little more time, than usual, just waiting on God…just resting in the Holy Spirit’s enabling. Let Him direct your prayer time…give up the control to Him…you might just be surprised at the results!

MONDAY 29th June – HEBREWS 4:15-16

“For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. 16 Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”

What an awesome though, as you begin a new day, that it is possible to have that kind of heart connection with Jesus Himself, for He left the throne of heaven, and walked this earth for thirty-three years. The infinite God became finite. He learned to walk and talk and work in His father’s carpentry shop. Most importantly, our scripture reminds us, that he was tempted in all points as we are. So be encouraged…He came to walk in your shoes! Why? So that you need never feel that He doesn’t understand. He does, and he will graciously help us stand strong! Lean on Him, rely on Him, He will see you through it.  Remember, He will never allow you to face something you cannot bear (1 Corinthians 10:13). He will always provide a way through!

FRIDAY 26th June – PSALM 46:1-10

“God is our refuge and strength, A very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, Even though the earth be removed, And though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; Though its waters roar and be troubled, Though the mountains shake with its swelling. Selah There is a river whose streams shall make glad the city of God, The holy place of the tabernacle of the Most High. God is in the midst of her, she shall not be moved;
God shall help her, just at the break of dawn. The nations raged, the kingdoms were moved; He uttered His voice, the earth melted. The Lord of hosts is with us; The God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah Come, behold the works of the Lord, Who has made desolations in the earth. He makes wars cease to the end of the earth; He breaks the bow and cuts the spear in two;
He burns the chariot in the fire. 10 Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!”

In a very real sense (Psalm 46) is a call that runs counter to our culture. Our world is so noisy and moves so quickly and our lives, in the process become filled with so much unnecessary clutter and “stuff” we don’t have time or space to process. But in the midst of all the clatter and clutter of your day, God calls you, today, to know Him not in the spectacular and loud, not in the dramatic and powerful. He calls us to be still! To find a place of quiet – internal as well as external…to commune with Him and listen for Him, and just to know…that He is! He is everything we need and more!

Thursday 25th June – PROVERBS 21:1-5

“The king’s heart is in the hand of the Lord, Like the rivers of water;
He turns it wherever He wishes. Every way of a man is right in his own eyes, But the Lord weighs the hearts.To do righteousness and justice Is more acceptable to the Lord than sacrifice. A haughty look, a proud heart,
And the ploughing of the wicked are sin. The plans of the diligent lead surely to plenty, But those of everyone who is hasty, surely to poverty.”

It was Thomas Edison who said, “Good fortune is what happens when opportunity meets with planning!”  This brings up an interesting thought, “Does the Bible have anything to say about planning?” The answer is yes! So, in our time together today, I would like to look at what the Bible has to say about plans and planning. The reality is…if you do not know where you are going, you’re going to end up somewhere else. (Proverbs 16:1-3) says, “The preparations of the heart belong to man,
But the answer of the tongue is from the Lord. All the ways of a man are pure in his own eyes; But the Lord weighs the spirits. Commit your works to the Lord, and your thoughts will be established.”  Wise people have a sense of what God wants and have made plans to achieve them. Wise people know where they are going and have plans on how to arrive there.  God has a purpose for every person. Discovering this and fulfilling it is the essence of life. But most people do not have any plan with their lives. They go through life without a clear picture of what God wants. They have no idea of their God-given destination. Take some time today to sit and ask the Lord how you can plan your life according to His plan.

wednesday 24th June – PROVERBS 22:1-4

“A good name is to be chosen rather than great riches,
Loving favour rather than silver and gold. The rich and the poor have this in common, The Lord is the maker of them all.A prudent man foresees evil and hides himself, But the simple pass on and are punished. By humility and the fear of the Lord
Are riches and honour and life.”

I often hear people explain the fear of the Lord as a mere respect or reverence. But the Bible uses the word fear at least 300 times in reference to God, so we make a mistake when we downplay it. The subject becomes even more mysterious when we read something like (1 John 4:18) that says that “perfect love expels all fear.” So how do we marry this dichotomy? How can we fear God while he expels all fear? Jesus said, “Don’t be afraid of those who want to kill your body; they cannot touch your soul. Fear only God, who can destroy both soul and body in hell” (Matthew 10:28). And Paul says to work toward complete holiness because we fear God (2 Corinthians 7:1). So it’s clear from these passages, that fearing God is good because it saves us from caving into our own sinful nature. I don’t know about you, but the more that I walk with the Lord, I discover that God poses an ominous threat to my ego, but not to me. He rescues me from my delusions, so he may reveal the truth that sets me free. He casts me down, only to lift me up again. He sits in judgment of my sin, but forgives me nevertheless. Fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, but love from the Lord is its completion.

TUesday 23rd June – 2 TIMOTHY 1:1-7

 Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, according to the promise of life which is in Christ Jesus, To Timothy, a beloved son: Grace, mercy, and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord. I thank God, whom I serve with a pure conscience, as my forefathers did, as without ceasing I remember you in my prayers night and day, greatly desiring to see you, being mindful of your tears, that I may be filled with joy, when I call to remembrance the genuine faith that is in you, which dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice, and I am persuaded is in you also.Therefore I remind you to stir up the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of my hands.For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.”

How many will wake up this morning and see the date…”Friday the 13th”…and panic?  Fear cripples and paralyzes. Fear blocks us from doing what we know to be right. Sometimes it is the fear of being rejected by someone else, or it could be the fear of not having some material thing. It can also be the fear of pain or even death. Our world will be shaken as Jesus has said that it would. The hearts of many will fail because of fear, but God desires that you live in freedom from fear. To reach your full potential in the Kingdom of God, you must live in the liberty that is yours in Christ. So today, in the midst of all the challenges that may come…remember that “perfect love casts out all fear” (1 John 4:18)…Why? Because nothing can separate you from His love (Romans 8:38)

monday 22nd June – JOHN 16:16-24

“A little while, and you will not see Me; and again a little while, and you will see Me, because I go to the Father.” 17 Then some of His disciples said among themselves, “What is this that He says to us, ‘A little while, and you will not see Me; and again a little while, and you will see Me’; and, ‘because I go to the Father’?” 18 They said therefore, “What is this that He says, ‘A little while’? We do not know what He is saying.” 19 Now Jesus knew that they desired to ask Him, and He said to them, “Are you inquiring among yourselves about what I said, ‘A little while, and you will not see Me; and again a little while, and you will see Me’? 20 Most assuredly, I say to you that you will weep and lament, but the world will rejoice; and you will be sorrowful, but your sorrow will be turned into joy. 21 A woman, when she is in labour, has sorrow because her hour has come; but as soon as she has given birth to the child, she no longer remembers the anguish, for joy that a human being has been born into the world. 22 Therefore you now have sorrow; but I will see you again and your heart will rejoice, and your joy no one will take from you. 23 “And in that day you will ask Me nothing. Most assuredly, I say to you, whatever you ask the Father in My name He will give you. 24 Until now you have asked nothing in My name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full.”

Wow…what an amazing promise we have here! I was so challenged as I sat writing this devotion for you today, about what it means to “ask in His Name”… Most definitely we need to understand that the Name of Jesus is not some magical formula for us to just get whatever we want! As I pondered this in my heart, waiting on the Holy Spirit for insight to share with you, this is what I sensed Him say…When we pray in the name of Jesus, we remember that we are able to approach God only because of Jesus and His shed blood. We also remember that God is God, and we’re not…”Thy will be done, Father”! I felt led to pray for you today, that you would find a new love and passion, for conversing with Him. He’s already waiting for you…to call His Name!

FRIDAY 19th June – COLOSSIANS 4:2-6

Continue earnestly in prayer, being vigilant in it with thanksgiving; meanwhile praying also for us, that God would open to us a door for the word, to speak the mystery of Christ, for which I am also in chains, that I may make it manifest, as I ought to speak. Walk in wisdom toward those who are outside, redeeming the time. Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt, that you may know how you ought to answer each one.”

Our words are so powerful. The words that we speak either build people up or tear them down…those are basically the only two options. Here in our reading today, God calls us, as his people, to the positive option. He calls us to always season our words with grace, just as we season our food with salt. So today, let me invite you to consider the impact your words generally have on the people you talk to. Would you pray with me, as your pastor, today, that the holy Spirit would bless us with self-control and the ability to think before we speak, so that our speech will “always be with grace”!

THURSDAY 18th June – GALATIANS 6:1-5

“Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, considering yourself lest you also be tempted. Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ. For if anyone thinks himself to be something, when he is nothing, he deceives himself. But let each one examine his own work, and then he will have rejoicing in himself alone, and not in another. For each one shall bear his own load.”

Once we are growing in our Christian walk and being led by the Holy Spirit, one of His works in the believer, is to convict us of sin…we can become very aware of sin…even the sins of others which usually are more obvious to us than our own. The warning, though, is clear to us here, not to try and be the Holy Spirit for other people! Let’s rather keep our eyes on Jesus (Hebrews 12:2) and be His example in the way that we conduct ourselves. Today be challenged to continue to submit yourself to His transforming work in your life!

Wednesday 17th June – PSALM 118:14-24

14 The Lord is my strength and song, and He has become my salvation. 15 The voice of rejoicing and salvation is in the tents of the righteous; the right hand of the Lord does valiantly. 16 The right hand of the Lord is exalted; the right hand of the Lord does valiantly. 17 I shall not die, but live, and declare the works of the Lord.
18 The Lord has chastened me severely, but He has not given me over to death. 19 Open to me the gates of righteousness;
I will go through them, and I will praise the Lord. 20 This is the gate of the Lord, through which the righteous shall enter. 21 I will praise You, for You have answered me, and have become my salvation. 22 The stone which the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone. 23 This was the Lord’s doing; it is marvellous in our eyes. 24 This is the day the Lord has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.”

“Carpe diem…seize the day” – Horace                                                                                                                                                      “Don’t look back on happiness or dream of it in the future. You are only sure of today; do not let your self be cheated out of it.” – Henry Ward Beecher                                                                                                                                            “Life is a great and wondrous mystery, and the only thing we know that we have for sure is what is right here right now. Don’t miss it!” – Leo Buscaglia

“This is the day the Lord has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.” These voices from the past and present are basically saying the same thing…but the Word of God says it best! The reason being…that the psalmist recognises that the gist of “today” comes from the Lord! So recognise that today is God’s gift to you. Never take for granted a single day He gives you. No matter what you are going through, choose to live it full of gratitude and expectation. So my challenge to you, today, as your pastor, is this…”What will you do to seize today?”

TUESDAY 16th June – GENESIS 3:8-20

“And they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden. Then the Lord God called to Adam and said to him, “Where are you?” 10 So he said, “I heard Your voice in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; and I hid myself.” 11 And He said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree of which I commanded you that you should not eat?” 12 Then the man said, “The woman whom You gave to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I ate.” 13 And the Lord God said to the woman, “What is this you have done?” The woman said, “The serpent deceived me, and I ate.” 14 So the Lord God said to the serpent: “Because you have done this, you are cursed more than all cattle, and more than every beast of the field; on your belly you shall go, and you shall eat dust all the days of your life. 15 And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her Seed; He shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise His heel.” 16 To the woman He said: “I will greatly multiply your sorrow and your conception; in pain you shall bring forth children; your desire shall be for your husband, and he shall rule over you.” 17 Then to Adam He said, “Because you have heeded the voice of your wife, and have eaten from the tree of which I commanded you, saying, ‘You shall not eat of it’: “Cursed is the ground for your sake; in toil you shall eat of it all the days of your life.18 Both thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you, and you shall eat the herb of the field. 19 In the sweat of your face you shall eat bread till you return to the ground, for out of it you were taken; for dust you are, and to dust you shall return.”20 And Adam called his wife’s name Eve, because she was the mother of all living.”

Have you ever wondered why God asked Adam and Eve where they were? Surely being the All-knowing God he already knew! Of course He did…he also knew why they hid instead of running joyfully to meet Him. So here’s my challenge…not just for you but also for me…If the lord came to meet us in our “garden” today, would we be hiding? You know…we really don’t have to because there is “therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus” (Romans 8:1). Because of Jesus we can be waiting for Him, joyfully, with “clean hands and a pure heart” (Psalm 24:4).

Monday 15th June – JONAH 2:8-10

“Those who regard worthless idols forsake their own Mercy. But I will sacrifice to You
with the voice of thanksgiving; I will pay what I have vowed. Salvation is of the Lord.” 10 So the Lord spoke to the fish, and it vomited Jonah onto dry land.”

We all go through those times and seasons when it seems like our prayers are bouncing off the ceiling and it seems like we’re not breaking through. The life of Jonah is a powerful example to us of how one, deliberate choice, can change everything. If you’re finding that your prayer time has lost momentum and seems to have stagnated…why not find a different place to pray in…it doesn’t have to be the belly of a fish! I know it sounds a strange suggestion to make…but even for me, as your pastor, prayer is a challenge, sometimes! This practical suggestion really works for me. Maybe it’s a place in your house where you would not normally pray or even somewhere outdoors. Why not change things around a little this week during your devotions…take time away from everyone else and just enjoy being close to God.

friday 12th june – 1 THESSALONIANS 4: 13 – 18

13 But I do not want you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning those who have fallen asleep, lest you sorrow as others who have no hope. 14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so God will bring with Him those who sleep in Jesus.15 For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord will by no means precede those who are asleep. 16 For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord. 18 Therefore comfort one another with these words.But concerning the times and the seasons, brethren, you have no need that I should write to you.For you yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so comes as a thief in the night. For when they say, “Peace and safety!” then sudden destruction comes upon them, as labour pains upon a pregnant woman. And they shall not escape. But you, brethren, are not in darkness, so that this Day should overtake you as a thief. You are all sons of light and sons of the day. We are not of the night nor of darkness. Therefore let us not sleep, as others do, but let us watch and be sober. For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk are drunk at night. But let us who are of the day be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love, and as a helmet the hope of salvation. For God did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, 10 who died for us, that whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with Him.11 Therefore comfort each other and edify one another, just as you also are doing.”

God encourages us Himself (Romans15:5) and He also gives to us as His children, the gift of encouragement so that we can encourage one another (Romans 12:8). As I thought about this responsibility that we as believers have, I realized how important courage is, if we are to build each other up. How many times, when you have found yourself facing a trial, test or challenge, has the Lord encouraged you through other people? So, today, as you go about your business…wherever you find yourself, ask Him to also make you a source of comfort, strength and courage for others.

Thursday 11th june – COLOSSIANS 3:15-4:1

“And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful. 16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. 17 And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.18 Wives, submit to your own husbands, as is fitting in the Lord.19 Husbands, love your wives and do not be bitter toward them.20 Children, obey your parents in all things, for this is well pleasing to the Lord.21 Fathers, do not provoke your children, lest they become discouraged.22 Bondservants, obey in all things your masters according to the flesh, not with eye service, as men-pleasers, but in sincerity of heart, fearing God. 23 And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men, 24 knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for you serve the Lord Christ. 25 But he who does wrong will be repaid for what he has done, and there is no partiality.Masters, give your bondservants what is just and fair, knowing that you also have a Master in heaven.”

If we take God’s Word seriously and allow it to dwell richly in us, the Holy Spirit will cause that Word to come alive in us. Often we feel unqualified to speak the Word to others even when we feel that inner prompting to. But the admonition from today’s devotion is that when you allow the Word of Christ to be established in you, the Holy Spirit will bring that word out of you and you will find that you are able to speak a word in season by His directing. He will bring that word to remembrance and give you the wisdom and sensitivity in how to deliver it. So listen for His direction today…The Holy Spirit is the One Who inspired the Word in the first place, and he will give you the inspiration to speak it by His leading.

wednesday 10th june – 1 JOHN 3:11-24

 For this is the message that you heard from the beginning, that we should love one another, 12 not as Cain who was of the wicked one and murdered his brother. And why did he murder him? Because his works were evil and his brother’s righteous. 13 Do not marvel, my brethren, if the world hates you. 14 We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love the brethren. He who does not love his brother abides in death. 15 Whoever hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him.16 By this we know love, because He laid down His life for us. And we also ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. 17 But whoever has this world’s goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him? 18 My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but In deed and in truth. 19 And by this we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before Him. 20 For if our heart condemns us, God is greater than our heart, and knows all things. 21 Beloved, if our heart does not condemn us, we have confidence toward God. 22 And whatever we ask we receive from Him, because we keep His commandments and do those things that are pleasing in His sight. 23 And this is His commandment: that we should believe on the name of His Son Jesus Christ and love one another, as He gave us commandment.”

We are channels of God’s love not reservoirs. We have to get into the habit of acting when God prompts us. We don’t have to be clever. No theological qualifications are necessary; just open-ness to the Holy Spirit. We shouldn’t excuse ourselves and think that somebody else will do what God expects us to do. We should obey Him and show others His love in action. So actively look today, for opportunities to be an expression of the Father’s heart of compassion, empathy and encouragement to those you come in contact with.

Tuesday 9th june – MATTHEW 6:25-34

“Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing?26 Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? 27 Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature? 28 “So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; 29 and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 30 Now if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? 31 “Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. 33 But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.”

I don’t know whether your experience is the same as mine…but when trouble comes, it all seems to come along together, or in quick succession? One thing I have learned is that worrying about them accomplishes nothing. In fact it is a faithless “drain”. It has the opposite effect, in that it depletes not only your faith but your energy, creativity and ability to strategize. Each day has enough challenges of its own, and worrying doesn’t eliminate the problems or pain of today or tomorrow. Of course you cannot live in denial, you cannot ignore the future, and there are sensible choices to be made. The answer is to find the place of balance. Do what you need to do and what you can’t do…what is outside of your power to control…hand it over to Him and trust Him to work it out! That’s good, sound advice…even if I say so, myself. Remember, as your pastor, I am praying for you, and we are here, as a pastoral team to support you!

monday 8th June – JOHN 14:25-27

“These things I have spoken to you while being present with you. 26 But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you. 27 Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.”

We greet people, today, with the words, “Hello, how are you?” in biblical times as well as in Israel today, they greet each other with the word, “Shalom”. It is the biblical word for “peace”. When we greet people, are we really interested in how things are going with them, or are we just mouthing the customary words? Jesus offers us His peace in the toughest of times. So whatever may be troubling you, at the start of this day…take your worry, fears and anxiety and turn it over to Him…shalom it!

FRiday 5th June – GALATIANS 5:16-25

“I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh. 17 For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.19 Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness,20 idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, 21 envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,23 gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. 24 And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.”

This issue of bearing the fruit of the Spirit is always a challenging one for me. How can you and I display them more consistently in our lives? I’m sure, like you, when I look at myself, sometimes I wonder whether I’ll ever come anywhere near to being like Jesus! But God promises these traits to us and I believe we should claim them. So as you spend time with Him today, as God to begin and continue His wonderful change in you.

Thursday 4th June – JOHN 10:22-42

“Now it was the Feast of Dedication in Jerusalem, and it was winter. 23 And Jesus walked in the temple, in Solomon’s porch. 24 Then the Jews surrounded Him and said to Him, “How long do You keep us in doubt? If You are the Christ, tell us plainly.” 25 Jesus answered them, “I told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in My Father’s name, they bear witness of Me. 26 But you do not believe, because you are not of My sheep, as I said to you.[a] 27 My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. 28 And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father’s hand. 30 I and My Father are one.”31 Then the Jews took up stones again to stone Him. 32 Jesus answered them, “Many good works I have shown you from My Father. For which of those works do you stone Me?” 33 The Jews answered Him, saying, “For a good work we do not stone You, but for blasphemy, and because You, being a Man, make Yourself God.” 34 Jesus answered them, “Is it not written in your law, ‘I said, “You are gods”’?  35 If He called them gods, to whom the word of God came (and the Scripture cannot be broken), 36 do you say of Him whom the Father sanctified and sent into the world, ‘You are blaspheming,’ because I said, ‘I am the Son of God’? 37 If I do not do the works of My Father, do not believe Me; 38 but if I do, though you do not believe Me, believe the works, that you may know and believe that the Father is in Me, and I in Him.” 39 Therefore they sought again to seize Him, but He escaped out of their hand.40 And He went away again beyond the Jordan to the place where John was baptizing at first, and there He stayed. 41 Then many came to Him and said, “John performed no sign, but all the things that John spoke about this Man were true.” 42 And many believed in Him there.”

A shepherd, particularly in biblical times, had an incredible relationship with his sheep. The sheep knew the voice of the shepherd and would immediately respond to it. There are so many voices clamouring for and demanding our attention each day, and today will be no different. But here is the question I have for you as you prepare to face whatever this day holds: Can you recognise the voice of your Shepherd? You get to know His voice by spending time in His presence…not only talking but listening. Sometimes we just need to stop speaking and listen…you will be amazed at how He will speak. So spend a little time, in your devotions, now, thinking through the different ways in which He may be speaking to you and how you can be more open to hearing His voice.

WEDNESDAY 3rd june – 1 SAMUEL  15:9-23

“But Saul and the people spared Agag and the best of the sheep, the oxen, the fatlings, the lambs, and all that was good, and were unwilling to utterly destroy them. But everything despised and worthless, that they utterly destroyed. 10 Now the word of the Lord came to Samuel, saying, 11 “I greatly regret that I have set up Saul asking, for he has turned back from following Me, and has not performed My commandments.” And it grieved Samuel, and he cried out to the Lord all night. 12 So when Samuel rose early in the morning to meet Saul, it was told Samuel, saying, “Saul went to Carmel, and indeed, he set up a monument for himself; and he has gone on around, passed by, and gone down to Gilgal.” 13 Then Samuel went to Saul, and Saul said to him, “Blessed are you of the Lord! I have performed the commandment of theLord.” 14 But Samuel said, “What then is this bleating of the sheep in my ears, and the lowing of the oxen which I hear?” 15 And Saul said, “They have brought them from the Amalekites; for the people spared the best of the sheep and the oxen, to sacrifice to the Lord your God; and the rest we have utterly destroyed.” 16 Then Samuel said to Saul, “Be quiet! And I will tell you what the Lord said to me last night.” And he said to him, “Speak on.” 17 So Samuel said, “When you were little in your own eyes, were you not head of the tribes of Israel? And did not the Lord anoint you king over Israel? 18 Now the Lord sent you on a mission, and said, ‘Go, and utterly destroy the sinners, the Amalekites, and fight against them until they are consumed.’19 Why then did you not obey the voice of the Lord? Why did you swoop down on the spoil, and do evil in the sight of the Lord?” 20 And Saul said to Samuel, “But I have obeyed the voice of the Lord, and gone on the mission on which the Lord sent me, and brought back Agag king of Amalek; I have utterly destroyed the Amalekites. 21 But the people took of the plunder, sheep and oxen, the best of the things which should have been utterly destroyed, to sacrifice to the Lord your God in Gilgal.” 22 So Samuel said:“Has the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed than the fat of rams.23 For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the Lord, He also has rejected you from being king.”


So often, when the pressure is on, we attempt to convince ourselves that “just a little bit won’t hurt!” We need, however, to understand a clear biblical principle that we see not only demonstrated in our reading today, but everywhere in Scripture: Half-hearted obedience is actually the same as disobedience. So often, we do just what Saul did, and think we can get away with being 99% obedient! How God looks at it, though, is very different. God, in fact, puts the sin of disobedience on a par with witchcraft and idolatry! Yep…I know it’s a tough one, for today…and I’m preaching to myself, as your pastor, as much as to you…but let’s always remember, that God demands wholehearted and complete obedience from us.


No man shall be able to stand before you all the days of your life; as I was with Moses, so I will be with you. I will not leave you nor forsake you. Be strong and of good courage, for to this people you shall divide as an inheritance the land which I swore to their fathers to give them. Only be strong and very courageous, that you may observe to do according to all the law which Moses My servant commanded you; do not turn from it to the right hand or to the left, that you may prosper wherever you go. This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success. Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”

Every day you and I need to think about this four-thousand-year-old message Joshua spoke to God’s people: Know the Word of God, meditate on His truth, be careful to obey His commands, and know His blessing. I want you to know that these words are just as relevant and life-giving today. And now, as New Testament believers, this side of the cross, we not only have the written Word to direct us, but also the example of Jesus as well as the indwelling Holy Spirit to provide guidance and direction to us. God has given us all we need to walk in His ways and blessing!


“Unless the Lord builds the house, they labour in vain who build it; Unless the Lord guards the city, the watchman stays awake in vain. It is vain for you to rise up early, to sit up late, to eat the bread of sorrows; for so He gives His beloved sleep. Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb is a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, so are the children of one’s youth. Happy is the man who has his quiver full of them; they shall not be ashamed, but shall speak with their enemies in the gate.”

There is a truth that rings out so clear from this psalm that is worth remembering as we set out to accomplish our goals and objectives this year…Anything we do – even things we do for the Kingdom, in our own power, or for our own recognition, is destined to either fail or at least fall short of what the result would have been with God’s blessing. So let me ask you…What house, if any, are you building right now that may not be God’s will for you? What task, if any, are you working hard at but without the Lords involvement?  Ask those questions of God. Listen for His answer. Then trust Him as you obey Him!


25 “Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing?26 Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? 27 Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature? 28 “So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; 29 and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 30 Now if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? 31 “Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. 33 But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.”

Jesus knew how readily we worry about life’s necessities and he reminds us of how valuable we are to the Father and of that fact He is Jehovah-Jireh, the Lord who provides for us. Jesus then commands us to seek first the “kingdom of God and His righteousness” with the promise that “all these things shall be added unto you.” So my challenge to you, as you start this New Year, is… Are eternal things your main focus as you plan 2014? Is your number one priority allowing God to reign in your life or are you more concerned about “all these things”? Let me encourage you to put Him first in all things and you will see how His provision and providence will amaze you!


“But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God.”

These are some of the most powerful words ever spoken by the Apostle Paul as he considered the risks facing him in his journey to Jerusalem. What mattered most to Paul was not how long his life lasted, but that however many days God gave him he would finish his race with joy. He had already suffered so much persecution for his ministry and bold proclamation of the Gospel…and he was willing to endure even more if necessary! What an example for us! We try to serve God, often in a way that least inconveniences us…but we are called to so much more! When life beats us down and we need to remind ourselves of what really matters, Acts 20:24 is always a good place to go…it works for me every time!

WEDNESDAY 27th may – ROMANS 8 31-39

31 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? 32 He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things? 33 Who shall bring a charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. 34 Who is he who condemns? It is Christ who died, and furthermore is also risen, who is even at the right hand of God, who also makes intercession for us. 35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 36 As it is written: “For Your sake we are killed all day long; We are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.”37 Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. 38 For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, 39 nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Feelings lie! Read that fact again: Feelings lie. One of the things we have to constantly remind ourselves of is that feelings don’t necessarily correspond with reality. Our feelings are affected by so many things…sleep of lack thereof; food or lack thereof; hormones… Feelings of being abandoned by God and the resulting discouragement can lead us to dangerous places. This is one of the devil’s tactics against the children of God. Therefore, we have to make a decision not to give our feelings a foothold. When our emotions raise their voices we need to counter that “noise” with the truth of God’s Word. Sometimes we will find it helpful to actually speak His Word out loud! So find those promises in Scripture that speak to your areas of doubt, fear or insecurity and make them part of your daily prayer and confession. There is power in the Word and it is a mighty sword in your hand and mouth!

Tuesday 26th may – EPHESIANS 1:11-14

“In Him also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestined according to the purpose of Him who works all things according to the counsel of His will, 12 that we who first trusted in Christ should be to the praise of His glory. 13 In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, 14 who is the guarantee of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, to the praise of His glory.”

Do you realise just how much God loves you? It is that revelation; that you are loved, accepted, parented, part of His family, adopted – that’s crucial to our self-esteem. It’s that deep inner “knowing”, that whatever else we may lose in this life, we will never stop being His children. I want to tell you today…and please hear my heart, because as I pen these words from my church office, I strongly sense that some of you really need to hear this: There are no hangers-on, no slightly less loved ones, no one’s on the periphery. He has no favourites and no forgotten ones. He brings outsiders in, and we…you…are included, wanted and chosen!

monday 25th may – MARK 10:17-23

“Now as He was going out on the road, one came running, knelt before Him, and asked Him, “Good Teacher, what shall I do that I may inherit eternal life?” 18 So Jesus said to him, “Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God. 19 You know the commandments: ‘Do not commit adultery,’ ‘Do not murder,’ ‘Do not steal,’ ‘Do not bear false witness,’ ‘Do not defraud,’ ‘Honour your father and your mother.’” 20 And he answered and said to Him, “Teacher, all these things I have kept from my youth.” 21 Then Jesus, looking at him, loved him, and said to him, “One thing you lack: Go your way, sell whatever you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, take up the cross, and follow Me.” 22 But he was sad at this word, and went away sorrowful, for he had great possessions.23 Then Jesus looked around and said to His disciples, “How hard it is for those who have riches to enter the kingdom of God!”

I have really been exercised in my thinking this week as I have been preparing these devotions for you, about the way we see and think about ourselves and how that impacts on our effectiveness to be used by the Lord. How you label yourself really matters! In this account from Mark chapter 10, this successful young man walks away, having decided against following Jesus. It almost seems as if Jesus failed him, in the sense that he failed to convince him. Should we label Jesus, a failure, in this instance? Of course not! And so here is my challenge for you, and me, today…Perhaps we should rethink how we interpret our failures too. Jesus and the Father are one. That did not change while he was on this earth. Therefore, Jesus connectedness to God meant he saw Himself rightly. As He was continuously connected to the Father, so we are continuously, through Him, connected to the Father…therefore our connectedness to God can do the same for us! “Christ in us the hope of glory!” Colossians 1:27.

Friday 22nd may – MATTHEW 25:14-30

““For the kingdom of heaven is like a man traveling to a far country, who called his own servants and delivered his goods to them. 15 And to one he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one, to each according to his own ability; and immediately he went on a journey. 16 Then he who had received the five talents went and traded with them, and made another five talents. 17 And likewise he who had received two gained two more also. 18 But he who had received one went and dug in the ground, and hid his lord’s money. 19 After a long time the lord of those servants came and settled accounts with them. 20 “So he who had received five talents came and brought five other talents, saying, ‘Lord, you delivered to me five talents; look, I have gained five more talents besides them.’ 21 His lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.’ 22 He also who had received two talents came and said, ‘Lord, you delivered to me two talents; look, I have gained two more talents besides them.’23 His lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant; you have been faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.’ 24 “Then he who had received the one talent came and said, ‘Lord, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you have not sown, and gathering where you have not scattered seed. 25 And I was afraid, and went and hid your talent in the ground. Look, there you have what is yours.’26 “But his lord answered and said to him, ‘You wicked and lazy servant, you knew that I reap where I have not sown, and gather where I have not scattered seed. 27 So you ought to have deposited my money with the bankers, and at my coming I would have received back my own with interest.28 Therefore take the talent from him, and give it to him who has ten talents.29 ‘For to everyone who has, more will be given, and he will have abundance; but from him who does not have, even what he has will be taken away. 30 And cast the unprofitable servant into the outer darkness. There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”

Following the thoughts I shared with you yesterday…you and I have a God-given responsibility to use our talents, gifts and ministries. If we want to hear the Father say, “Well done,” we need to get rid of the fear which paralyses us! When you take that leap of faith and do what He’s called and gifted you to do, you will discover that dimension, whereby He says, “It’s not by might nor by power but by My Spirit, says the Lord!” Zechariah 4:6. So come on…make that choice, today, no more hiding your talents, no more fear and intimidation, no more excuses…step out and use what He’s given you!

Thursday 21st may – LUKE 18:9-14

“Also He spoke this parable to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others: 10 “Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 11 The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, ‘God, I thank You that I am not like other men—extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this tax collector. 12 I fast twice a week; I give tithes of all that I possess.’ 13 And the tax collector, standing afar off, would not so much as raise his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast, saying, ‘God, be merciful to me a sinner!’ 14 I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.”

Faith is not escapism or denying the realities of life. The Bible doesn’t say we should try and pretend to be what we’re not  and neither does it overlook our inadequacies. The fact is, we are inadequate. Whatever is right about us…all of it, it provided by Jesus. Our responsibility is not to try and raise ourselves or elevate ourselves, but rather to humble ourselves. God does the raising. So remember today, as you meditate on these verses, that no matter how inadequate and unqualified you may feel…you do have a new and exalted position in Christ…and it’s founded on what He has done, not you, and on His righteousness, not yours.


“But this I say: He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work. As it is written: “He has dispersed abroad, He has given to the poor;
His righteousness endures forever.” 10 Now may He who supplies seed to the sower, and bread for food, supply and multiply the seed you have sown and increase the fruits of your righteousness, 11 while you are enriched in everything for all liberality, which causes thanksgiving through us to God. 12 For the administration of this service not only supplies the needs of the saints, but also is abounding through many thanksgivings to God,13 while, through the proof of this ministry, they glorify God for the obedience of your confession to the gospel of Christ, and for your liberal sharing with them and all men, 14 and by their prayer for you, who long for you because of the exceeding grace of God in you. 15 Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!”

I really felt, after writing yesterday’s devotion, that there was more to share…so here it is…and again, this is a word for me, as much as for you. “For God loves a cheerful giver!”  The question is: Do you give God what is left after all your other commitments have been met, or do you put aside your offering and then trust Him to meet all your other needs? You see, God’s standards have not changed, regardless of what we have to give! God still judges our generosity, not by what we give, but by what we keep for ourselves, whether it’s tome, talents or money. Let the Holy Spirit help you examine your heart today, as I have asked him to examine mine, and help us to surrender all to Him.

TUESDAY 19th MAy – MARK 12:41-44

“Now Jesus sat opposite the treasury and saw how the people put money into the treasury. And many who were rich put in much. 42 Then one poor widow came and threw in two mites,  which make a quadrans. 43 So He called His disciples to Himself and said to them, “Assuredly, I say to you that this poor widow has put in more than all those who have given to the treasury; 44 for they all put in out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty put in all that she had, her whole livelihood.”

As I read this passage again, for today’s devotion, I was again struck by the fact that “God sees everything!” Here Jesus was watching people as they gave in the temple. He watched the rich throw large amounts of money into the treasury. It was, however, the widow who slipped in and slid her two tiny coins into the heap, hoping not to be noticed, that caught the attention of Jesus, so much so, that He called the disciples to use her as an example to teach them a powerful spiritual principle. It wasn’t what she had given, but what she had kept for herself, that Jesus cared about. What have you given, what things have you surrendered to him…not just physical things…but your dreams, your desires, your ambitions…and what are you keeping for yourself? Now that’s a tough challenge, I know, even as I pen these words for you, I’m dealing with my own heart.

MONDAY 18th may – 1 SAMUEL 16:1-3

“Now the Lord said to Samuel, “How long will you mourn for Saul, seeing I have rejected him from reigning over Israel? Fill your horn with oil, and go; I am sending you to Jesse the Bethlehemite. For I have provided Myself a king among his sons.” And Samuel said, “How can I go? If Saul hears it, he will kill me.” But the Lord said, “Take a heifer with you, and say, ‘I have come to sacrifice to the Lord.’ Then invite Jesse to the sacrifice, and I will show you what you shall do; you shall anoint for Me the one I name to you.” So Samuel did what the Lord said, and went to Bethlehem. And the elders of the town trembled at his coming, and said, “Do you come peaceably?” And he said, “Peaceably; I have come to sacrifice to the Lord. Sanctify yourselves, and come with me to the sacrifice.” Then he consecrated Jesse and his sons, and invited them to the sacrifice. So it was, when they came, that he looked at Eliab and said, “Surely the Lord’s anointed is before Him!” But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look at his appearance or at his physical stature, because I have refused him. For the Lord does not see as man sees;  for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”

So many times we disqualify ourselves or others from being part of God’s plan because we judge by externals. With Jesse age seems to have been an issue. David certainly had the right image to be a king, but because of his youth, he wasn’t even considered until all of his other brothers had been called and appeared before Samuel. God, however, chose David regardless of his age, appearance or obvious aptitudes, because he knew his heart. God looks at your heart today, and what he most looks for, is not capability, but availability. So say, “Today, Lord, I’m available, use me in any way You chose.”

FRIDAY 15th MAy – 2 Kings 8:8-18

“And the king said to Hazael, “Take a present in your hand, and go to meet the man of God, and inquire of the Lord by him, saying, ‘Shall I recover from this disease?’” So Hazael went to meet him and took a present with him, of every good thing of Damascus, forty camel-loads; and he came and stood before him, and said, “Your son Ben-Hadad king of Syria has sent me to you, saying, ‘Shall I recover from this disease?’” 10 And Elisha said to him, “Go, say to him, ‘You shall certainly recover.’ However the Lord has shown me that he will really die.” 11 Then he set his countenance in a stare until he was ashamed; and the man of God wept. 12 And Hazael said, “Why is my lord weeping?” He answered, “Because I know the evil that you will do to the children of Israel: Their strongholds you will set on fire, and their young men you will kill with the sword; and you will dash their children, and rip open their women with child.” 13 So Hazael said, “But what is your servant—a dog, that he should do this gross thing?” And Elisha answered, “The Lord has shown me that you will become king over Syria.”14 Then he departed from Elisha, and came to his master, who said to him, “What did Elisha say to you?” And he answered, “He told me you would surely recover.” 15 But it happened on the next day that he took a thick cloth and dipped it in water, and spread it over his face so that he died; and Hazael reigned in his place.16 Now in the fifth year of Joram the son of Ahab, king of Israel, Jehoshaphat having been king of Judah, Jehoram the son of Jehoshaphat began to reign as king of Judah. 17 He was thirty-two years old when he became king, and he reigned eight years in Jerusalem. 18 And he walked in the way of the kings of Israel, just as the house of Ahab had done, for the daughter of Ahab was his wife; and he did evil in the sight of the Lord.”

Elisha and his servant were facing imminent danger. They were surrounded on every side by the enemy. Elisha didn’t try to deny the situation or argue his servant out of his panic…he merely prayed for his eyes to be opened. The Lord answered and the servant saw the armies of the Lord protecting them. In all of the stresses of life and the risks and threats we face each day, if we look and listen, we will find abundant evidence that God is at work in this world, no matter how dark things may appear.

THURSDAY 14th MAY – 1 TIMOTHY 5:1-25

“Do not rebuke an older man, but exhort him as a father, younger men as brothers, older women as mothers, younger women as sisters, with all purity. Honour widows who are really widows. But if any widow has children or grandchildren, let them first learn to show piety at home and to repay their parents; for this is good and acceptable before God.Now she who is really a widow, and left alone, trusts in God and continues in supplications and prayers night and day. But she who lives in pleasure is dead while she lives. And these things command, that they may be blameless. But if anyone does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever. Do not let a widow under sixty years old be taken into the number, and not unless she has been the wife of one man, 10 well reported for good works: if she has brought up children, if she has lodged strangers, if she has washed the saints’ feet, if she has relieved the afflicted, if she has diligently followed every good work. 11 But refuse the younger widows; for when they have begun to grow wanton against Christ, they desire to marry, 12 having condemnation because they have cast off their first faith. 13 And besides they learn to be idle, wandering about from house to house, and not only idle but also gossips and busybodies, saying things which they ought not. 14 Therefore I desire that the younger widows marry, bear children, manage the house, give no opportunity to the adversary to speak reproachfully. 15 For some have already turned aside after Satan. 16 If any believing man or woman has widows, let them relieve them, and do not let the church be burdened, that it may relieve those who are really widows.17 Let the elders who rule well be counted worthy of double honour, especially those who labour in the word and doctrine. 18 For the Scripture says, “You shall not muzzle an ox while it treads out the grain,”[c] and, “The labourer is worthy of his wages.” 19 Do not receive an accusation against an elder except from two or three witnesses. 20 Those who are sinning rebuke in the presence of all, that the rest also may fear. 21 I charge you before God and the Lord Jesus Christ and the elect angels that you observe these things without prejudice, doing nothing with partiality. 22 Do not lay hands on anyone hastily, nor share in other people’s sins; keep yourself pure.23 No longer drink only water, but use a little wine for your stomach’s sake and your frequent infirmities. 24 Some men’s sins are clearly evident, preceding them to judgment, but those of some men follow later. 25 Likewise, the good works of some are clearly evident, and those that are otherwise cannot be hidden.”

I want to challenge us, today, on the subject of our communication…how we speak to others. To communicate well, we need to rid ourselves of anything that prejudges another person or expects people to think and feel exactly as we do. In our passage today, we are given some practical guidance and advice on how we should address people and how different people should be treated. We have to understand that if we are going to love people, unconditionally, we have to let them be themselves and not allow our culture, upbringing and personal experiences to influence our interpretation.

WEDNESDAY 13th MAy – 1 SAMUEL 3:1-18

“Now the boy Samuel ministered to the Lord before Eli. And the word of the Lord was rare in those days; there was no widespread revelation. And it came to pass at that time, while Eli was lying down in his place, and when his eyes had begun to grow so dim that he could not see, and before the lamp of God went out in the tabernacle of the Lord where the ark of God was, and while Samuel was lying down, that the Lord called Samuel. And he answered, “Here I am!” So he ran to Eli and said, “Here I am, for you called me.” And he said, “I did not call; lie down again.” And he went and lay down. Then the Lord called yet again, “Samuel!” So Samuel arose and went to Eli, and said, “Here I am, for you called me.” He answered, “I did not call, my son; lie down again.” (Now Samuel did not yet know the Lord, nor was the word of the Lord yet revealed to him.) And the Lord called Samuel again the third time. So he arose and went to Eli, and said, “Here I am, for you did call me.” Then Eli perceived that the Lord had called the boy. Therefore Eli said to Samuel, “Go, lie down; and it shall be, if He calls you, that you must say, ‘Speak, Lord, for Your servant hears.’” So Samuel went and lay down in his place. 10 Now the Lord came and stood and called as at other times, “Samuel! Samuel!” And Samuel answered, “Speak, for Your servant hears.”11 Then the Lord said to Samuel: “Behold, I will do something in Israel at which both ears of everyone who hears it will tingle. 12 In that day I will perform against Eli all that I have spoken concerning his house, from beginning to end. 13 For I have told him that I will judge his house forever for the iniquity which he knows, because his sons made themselves vile, and he did not restrain them. 14 And therefore I have sworn to the house of Eli that the iniquity of Eli’s house shall not be atoned for by sacrifice or offering forever.”15 So Samuel lay down until morning, and opened the doors of the house of the Lord. And Samuel was afraid to tell Eli the vision. 16 Then Eli called Samuel and said, “Samuel, my son!” He answered, “Here I am.”17 And he said, “What is the word that the Lord spoke to you? Please do not hide it from me. God do so to you, and more also, if you hide anything from me of all the things that He said to you.” 18 Then Samuel told him everything, and hid nothing from him. And he said, “It is the Lord. Let Him do what seems good to Him.”

I’m sure you’ve also had the experience I’ve had…where you’re just going about your usual business and when you least expect it, the Lord just “drops” something into your spirit and speaks to you about something really important. In this instance, Samuel wasn’t expecting to hear from God and he didn’t even immediately recognise His voice, but he was alert to the voice of the one was serving, in this case Eli. When the old priest, having discerned that it was the Lord, told him how to respond. He immediately did…he listened and obeyed. So today, in the midst of all of the hustle and bustle and noise…just be open to receive unexpected directions and instructions from the Father. Learn to trust His voice. The more you listen, the more you will be able to recognise Him!

TUESDAY 12th MAY – LUKE 1:46-55

“And Mary said: “My soul magnifies the Lord, 47 And my spirit has rejoiced in God my Saviour. 48 For He has regarded the lowly state of His maidservant; for behold, henceforth all generations will call me blessed.
49 For He who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is His name.50 And His mercy is on those who fear Him from generation to generation. 51 He has shown strength with His arm; He has scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts.
52 He has put down the mighty from their thrones, and exalted the lowly. 53 He has filled the hungry with good things, and the rich He has sent away empty. 54 He has helped His servant Israel, in remembrance of His mercy, 55 As He spoke to our fathers, to Abraham and to his seed forever.”

God has a way of speaking to us about different things and in different ways. When the Lord spoke this word to Mary, her response was to praise Him. What is your response to His shaping, moulding and challenging you? Mary was fearful and uncertain at first, but her fear soon turned into praise of the goodness of God. Make sure, that as you listen and submit to Him this week, that you remember His goodness and faithfulness. Make sure you turn to Him and allow Him to work in you to bring change.


“I sleep, but my heart is awake;
It is the voice of my beloved! He knocks, saying, “Open for me, my sister, my love, my dove, my perfect one; for my head is covered with dew, my locks with the drops of the night.” I have taken off my robe; how can I put it on again? I have washed my feet; how can I defile them? My beloved put his hand by the latch of the door, and my heart yearned for him. I arose to open for my beloved, and my hands dripped with myrrh, my fingers with liquid myrrh, on the handles of the lock. I opened for my beloved, but my beloved had turned away and was gone. My heart leaped up when he spoke. I sought him, but I could not find him; I called him, but he gave me no answer.”

We have to distinguish between waiting and procrastinating. There can be no that there are occasions when God uses delays to teach us valuable lessons, but we should never put off for another day what we can and should do today. Yes we need routines and structure in our lives in order to properly manage our resources and schedules. We so easily get locked into these structures and can develop our comfort zones – our familiar ways of doing things. However, if these comfort zones prevent us from responding to God’s voice, they need to be dealt with. That’s a principle we all need to pponder as we begin to face the business and demands of this coming week.

wednesday 29th April – ROMANS 8:22-28

18  For we know that the whole creation groans and labours with birth pangs together until now. 23 Not only that, but we also who have the first-fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, eagerly waiting for the adoption, the redemption of our body. 24 For we were saved in this hope, but hope that is seen is not hope; for why does one still hope for what he sees? 25 But if we hope for what we do not see, we eagerly wait for it with perseverance. 26 Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.27 Now He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God.

28 And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. 29 For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren. 30 Moreover whom He predestined, these He also called; whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified.”


Be reminded today, of the incredible promise of God’s providence towards you as His child. The truth is, that god orders even small events to serve the good of His people. Things that may even seem accidental to you are directed by God’s providence – His design. So look for His hand, throughout your day…and you will see Him at work in a fresh way, even in your so-called coincidences. Enter into the “rest” of knowing that he is ultimately in control.

Tuesday 28th april – COLOSSIANS 3:1-10

“If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory.

Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. Because of these things the wrath of God is coming upon the sons of disobedience, in which you yourselves once walked when you lived in them. But now you yourselves are to put off all these: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy language out of your mouth. Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old man with his deeds,10 and have put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him, 11 where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcised nor uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave nor free, but Christ is all and in all.”


The challenge, today, is to realize that as a believer, you are set apart to God! The question is, “Can others tell?” Verse 2 says, “Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. “ Does your life look like you’re set apart to God in what you say and do? What about your attitudes? How about the way you handle other people? We have to resist that pressure to adopt a phony façade. If you and I are truly His, the difference will emerge naturally, through our faith priorities. So today, my encouragement is simple…Set  your heart on things above!

Monday 27th April– PSALM 110:97-105

“Oh, how I love Your law! It is my meditation all the day. 98 You, through Your commandments, make me wiser than my enemies; for they are ever with me. 99 I have more understanding than all my teachers, for Your testimonies are my meditation. 100 I understand more than the ancients, because I keep Your precepts.
101 I have restrained my feet from every evil way, that I may keep Your word. 102 I have not departed from Your judgments,
For You Yourself have taught me. 103 How sweet are Your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth!
104 Through Your precepts I get understanding; Therefore I hate every false way. 105 Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.”


What power there is in the Word of God! His Word not only keeps you from sin, but it also leads you in the right direction. Get the Word in you…store it up in your heart…meditate on it and renew your mind to it…it is your ultimate treasure! So determine as you begin today, that you are going to be like the wise builder who built his house on the rock (Matthew 7:24-27), and make His Word your ultimate authority in all things. This is truly the key to success (Joshua 1:8)!

friday 24th DECEMBER – JOHN 21:9-19

“Then, as soon as they had come to land, they saw a fire of coals there, and fish laid on it, and bread. 10 Jesus said to them, “Bring some of the fish which you have just caught.” 11 Simon Peter went up and dragged the net to land, full of large fish, one hundred and fifty-three; and although there were so many, the net was not broken. 12 Jesus said to them, “Come and eat breakfast.” Yet none of the disciples dared ask Him, “Who are You?”—knowing that it was the Lord.13 Jesus then came and took the bread and gave it to them, and likewise the fish.

14 This is now the third time Jesus showed Himself to His disciples after He was raised from the dead. 15 So when they had eaten breakfast, Jesus said to Simon Peter, “Simon, son of Jonah, do you love Me more than these?” He said to Him, “Yes, Lord; You know that I love You.” He said to him, “Feed My lambs.” 16 He said to him again a second time, “Simon, son of Jonah, do you love Me?” He said to Him, “Yes, Lord; You know that I love You.” He said to him, “Tend My sheep.”

17 He said to him the third time, “Simon, son of Jonah, do you love Me?” Peter was grieved because He said to him the third time, “Do you love Me?” And he said to Him, “Lord, You know all things; You know that I love You.” Jesus said to him, “Feed My sheep. 18 Most assuredly, I say to you, when you were younger, you girded yourself and walked where you wished; but when you are old, you will stretch out your hands, and another will gird you and carry you where you do not wish.” 19 This He spoke, signifying by what death he would glorify God. And when He had spoken this, He said to him, “Follow Me.”

At the beginning of this chapter Peter says, “I’m going fishing.” He was really saying, “What is there left for me but to go back to my old job. I’ve got to do something. I have totally failed the Lord. I feel guilty about it, but I can’t forgive myself.” He goes off with the weight of guilt hanging heavy on his shoulders, back to his old job. He struggles with where do I go from here? What do I do now? I blame myself over and over for what I did. I can’t do anything about it. He probably replayed the tape over and over from the time he denied Christ, but it didn’t do any good. He could not forgive himself and maybe he wasn’t sure if the Lord could even forgive him. It seemed just too difficult.  Does this sound familiar to you when trying to forgive yourself for something? At times there are certain things you look back on in your life that you punish yourself over and over for just like Peter did. It seems impossible to overcome. What can this scripture say to us today that will help us to get past the things that are keeping us chained to the past? I want to encourage you…don’t beat yourself up over the past. Jesus says to us, “I have forgiven you totally!” His forgiveness is all inclusive. That forgiveness includes forgiving yourself.  As we move away from our past, we also find in it the healing for ourselves. You CAN forgive yourself. Decide to do it today.

THURSday 23rd APRIL – PSALM 139:1-14

“O Lord, You have searched me and known me.
You know my sitting down and my rising up;
You understand my thought afar off.
You comprehend my path and my lying down,
And are acquainted with all my ways.
For there is not a word on my tongue,
But behold, O Lord, You know it altogether.
You have hedged me behind and before,
And laid Your hand upon me.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;
It is high, I cannot attain it.

Where can I go from Your Spirit?
Or where can I flee from Your presence?
If I ascend into heaven, You are there;
If I make my bed in hell, behold, You are there.
If I take the wings of the morning,
And dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea,
10 Even there Your hand shall lead me,
And Your right hand shall hold me.
11 If I say, “Surely the darkness shall fall on me,”
Even the night shall be light about me;
12 Indeed, the darkness shall not hide from You,
But the night shines as the day;
The darkness and the light are both alike to You.

13 For You formed my inward parts;
You covered me in my mother’s womb.
14 I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Marvelous are Your works,
And that my soul knows very well.”

The beauty industry sells us an image of perfection. One company’s slogan is, “Because I’m worth it!” God, however, has been saying that about you all along! We need to be reminded today that we are worth God’s time and effort, His Son’s life and His forgiveness, His patience and His disciplining care, His fathering and His love. So we can say with confidence and assurance, “This is who I am…God says so!” Do that right now…as you start the day…and it will bring you security and unshakeable certainty!


“And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. 29 For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren. 30 Moreover whom He predestined, these He also called; whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified. 31 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? 32 He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things? 33 Who shall bring a charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. 34 Who is he who condemns? It is Christ who died, and furthermore is also risen, who is even at the right hand of God, who also makes intercession for us. 35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 36 As it is written: “For Your sake we are killed all day long;
We are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.”37 Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. 38 For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come”

The expectation of a smooth trouble free journey through life, planned by a God who won’t let us experience any pain or experience any trouble, can lead us to a spiritual crisis point when life doesn’t work out the way we expect it to. The fact is, that the Christian life is not a constant series of miracles. That is not to say that God does not intervene and fulfil His promises to us. What it does mean is that he is working it all out according to His master plan.

TUESDAY 21st APRIL – LUKE 15:3-10

“So He spoke this parable to them, saying: “What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he loses one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness, and go after the one which is lost until he finds it? And when he has found it, he lays it on his shoulders, rejoicing. And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and neighbours, saying to them, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep which was lost!’ I say to you that likewise there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine just persons who need no repentance.“Or what woman, having ten silver coins  if she loses one coin, does not light a lamp, sweep the house, and search carefully until she finds it? And when she has found it, she calls her friends and neighbors together, saying, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found the piece which I lost!’ 10 Likewise, I say to you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.”

Often pictures of heaven focus on our joy at finding Jesus, but He also celebrates because he has found us. He so desperately wanted to find us that He left the comfort of heaven and died to rescue us, the angels cheering Him on every step of the way. Jesus had plans for you. He pursues you because He wants you to be part of eternity with Him


Then I looked, and behold, a whirlwind was coming out of the north, a great cloud with raging fire engulfing itself; and brightness was all around it and radiating out of its midst like the color of amber, out of the midst of the fire. Also from within it came the likeness of four living creatures. And thiswas their appearance: they had the likeness of a man. Each one had four faces, and each one had four wings. Their legs were straight, and the soles of their feet were like the soles of calves’ feet. They sparkled like the color of burnished bronze. The hands of a man were under their wings on their four sides; and each of the four had faces and wings. Their wings touched one another. The creatures did not turn when they went, but each one went straight forward.

10 As for the likeness of their faces, each had the face of a man; each of the four had the face of a lion on the right side, each of the four had the face of an ox on the left side, and each of the four had the face of an eagle. 11 Thus were their faces. Their wings stretched upward; two wings of each one touched one another, and two covered their bodies. 12 And each one went straight forward; they went wherever the spirit wanted to go, and they did not turn when they went.

13 As for the likeness of the living creatures, their appearance was like burning coals of fire, like the appearance of torches going back and forth among the living creatures. The fire was bright, and out of the fire went lightning. 14 And the living creatures ran back and forth, in appearance like a flash of lightning.

15 Now as I looked at the living creatures, behold, a wheel was on the earth beside each living creature with its four faces. 16 The appearance of the wheels and their workings was like the color of beryl, and all four had the same likeness. The appearance of their workings was, as it were, a wheel in the middle of a wheel. 17 When they moved, they went toward any one of four directions; they did not turn aside when they went. 18 As for their rims, they were so high they were awesome; and their rims were full of eyes, all around the four of them. 19 When the living creatures went, the wheels went beside them; and when the living creatures were lifted up from the earth, the wheels were lifted up. 20 Wherever the spirit wanted to go, they went, because there the spirit went; and the wheels were lifted together with them, for the spirit of the living creatures  was in the wheels. 21 When those went, these went; when those stood, these stood; and when those were lifted up from the earth, the wheels were lifted up together with them, for the spirit of the living creatures  was in the wheels.

22 The likeness of the firmament above the heads of the living creatures[c] was like the color of an awesome crystal, stretched out over their heads. 23 And under the firmament their wings spread outstraight, one toward another. Each one had two which covered one side, and each one had two which covered the other side of the body. 24 When they went, I heard the noise of their wings, like the noise of many waters, like the voice of the Almighty, a tumult like the noise of an army; and when they stood still, they let down their wings. 25 A voice came from above the firmament that was over their heads; whenever they stood, they let down their wings.

26 And above the firmament over their heads was the likeness of a throne, in appearance like a sapphire stone; on the likeness of the throne was a likeness with the appearance of a man high above it. 27 Also from the appearance of His waist and upward I saw, as it were, the color of amber with the appearance of fire all around within it; and from the appearance of His waist and downward I saw, as it were, the appearance of fire with brightness all around. 28 Like the appearance of a rainbow in a cloud on a rainy day, so was the appearance of the brightness all around it. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the Lord. So when I saw it, I fell on my face, and I heard a voice of One speaking.”

What do you think of when you hear the word “heaven”? Ezekiel only caught a glimpse of a shadow of God’s presence, but that was enough to knock him flat. In this life, we only catch fleeting glimpses of God’s heavenly glory, often in the most unexpected people and places. These are treasures to spur us on in our journey of faith.

FRIDAY 17th APRIL – PSALM 91:1-16

“He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High
Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.
I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress;
My God, in Him I will trust.”

Surely He shall deliver you from the snare of the fowler
And from the perilous pestilence.
He shall cover you with His feathers,
And under His wings you shall take refuge;
His truth shall be your shield and buckler.
You shall not be afraid of the terror by night,
Nor of the arrow that flies by day,
Nor of the pestilence that walks in darkness,
Nor of the destruction that lays waste at noonday.

A thousand may fall at your side,
And ten thousand at your right hand;
But it shall not come near you.
Only with your eyes shall you look,
And see the reward of the wicked.

Because you have made the Lord, who is my refuge,
Even the Most High, your dwelling place,
10 No evil shall befall you,
Nor shall any plague come near your dwelling;
11 For He shall give His angels charge over you,
To keep you in all your ways.
12 In their hands they shall bear you up,
Lest you dash your foot against a stone.
13 You shall tread upon the lion and the cobra,
The young lion and the serpent you shall trample underfoot.

14 “Because he has set his love upon Me, therefore I will deliver him;
I will set him on high, because he has known My name.
15 He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him;
will be with him in trouble;
I will deliver him and honor him.
16 With long life I will satisfy him,
And show him My salvation.”

In this psalm God tells us that He is our shelter, our rest, our refuge, cover, dwelling-place, shield and fortress. He will protect, guard and save. It could hardly be more comprehensive. What a mighty God we serve! All you have to do is creep into your Heavenly Father’s arms, in child-like faith, and you can have absolute security in whatever situation you find yourself in!

THURSDAY 16th April – (GENESIS 41:14-16)

14 Then Pharaoh sent and called Joseph, and they brought him quickly out of the dungeon; and he shaved, changed his clothing, and came to Pharaoh. 15 And Pharaoh said to Joseph, “I have had a dream, and there is no one who can interpret it. But I have heard it said of you that you can understand a dream, to interpret it.” 16 So Joseph answered Pharaoh, saying, “It is not in me; God will give Pharaoh an answer of peace.”

How encouraged I am, every time I read the story of Joseph’s life. There are so many powerful things that we learn about the timing and faithfulness of God to fulfil His plans for us…no matter what! So today, do you feel trapped in a situation which seems to form unyielding bars around you? In these circumstances you can trust God to swing open the doors – in His perfect timing. In the meantime, it is important to ask the right question. Not “Why am I here?”, but “What does God want to teach me or in what way does He want to use me, right here in this situation?”

WEDNESDAY 15th April – ( MATTHEW 7:1-5)

“Judge not, that you be not judged. For with what judgement you judge, you will be judged; and with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you. And why do you look at the speck in your brother’s eye, but do not consider the plank in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me remove the speck from your eye’; and look, a plank is in your own eye? Hypocrite! First remove the plank from your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.”

They say that love is blind – at the beginning of a relationship we rarely even notice flaws in the other person. This uncritical spirit lasts only for a short while! Some of us are more critical than others, but we all tend to see the faults in others before we notice them in ourselves. So my challenge to you…and of course myself, today, is before we are tempted to criticise others, let’s first take a good look at ourselves, and always view others through the lens of love!

TUESDAY 14h April – (1 SAMUEL 16:1-3)

“Now the Lord said to Samuel, “How long will you mourn for Saul, seeing I have rejected him from reigning over Israel? Fill your horn with oil, and go; I am sending you to Jesse the Bethlehemite. For I have provided Myself a king among his sons.”And Samuel said, “How can I go? If Saul hears it, he will kill me.”But the Lord said, “Take a heifer with you, and say, ‘I have come to sacrifice to the Lord.’ Then invite Jesse to the sacrifice, and I will show you what you shall do; you shall anoint for Me the one I name to you.”

We often disqualify others or ourselves from being part of God’s plan because we judge by externals. With Jesse age seems to have been an issue. David certainly had the right image for a king, but because of his age, he wasn’t even called until all of his brothers had appeared before Samuel. But God chose David regardless of his age, appearance or obvious aptitudes, because He knew his heart. Make yourself available today, for any way or opportunity God wants to use you. If you do…get ready for an adventure today!

MONDAY 13th april – (COLOSSIANS 1:9-14)

 For this reason we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; 10 that you may walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; 11 strengthened with all might, according to His glorious power, for all patience and longsuffering with joy; 12 giving thanks to the Father who has qualified us to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in the light. 13 He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love, 14 in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins.”

Paul prayed often and fervently for the Colossians. We, on the other hand, are often too exhausted to pray once we’ve coped with the babies, dropping the kids off at school, catching the train to work, deadlines, clients and employers. We hardly have any energy, at times, to pray with real passion and fervency. We can make prayer so complicated! If we can talk, we can pray….it’s as simple as that. We don’t get qualified, we already are. Prayer can be a tremendous place, to recharge your energy and focus. Try it…it works every time, for me, no matter how busy I am!

FRIDAY 10th April – HEBREWS 13:1-5

“Let brotherly love continue. Do not forget to entertain strangers, for by so doing some have unwittingly entertained angels. Remember the prisoners as if chained with them—those who are mistreated—since you yourselves are in the body also.Marriage is honourable among all, and the bed undefiled; but fornicators and adulterers God will judge. Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”

I have been a pastor for now more than thirty years. In that time I have had to meet and deal with people from all walks of life. From the wealthy to the poor, from the influential, down to those on the very fringes of society who would be considered outcasts. And through it all, one thing is clear…that all the money, prestige and recognition in the world, cannot buy the happiness found in heaven. The obvious question, then, is what makes heaven a happy place? Heaven is not a happy place because of the gates of pearl and streets of gold. Heaven is a happy place, because God is there! And he is not only “there” but He dwells in you 24/7! Therefore, whatever situation you are facing today…remember…Contentment says, “Even if my circumstances are difficult right now, I’m okay, because God is here!”

THURSDAY 9th April – PSALM 25:4-9

“Show me Your ways, O Lord; teach me Your paths. Lead me in Your truth and teach me, for You are the God of my salvation; on You I wait all the day.Remember, O Lord, Your tender mercies and Your loving kindnesses, for they are from of old. Do not remember the sins of my youth, nor my transgressions; according to Your mercy remember me, for Your goodness’ sake, O Lord.Good and upright is the Lord; therefore He teaches sinners in the way.
The humble He guides in justice, and the humble He teaches His way.”

We live in a world today where people are so hungry for wisdom and knowledge. The question I want to ponder with you, today, is…How do you obtain wisdom? What is the formula? It isn’t education or aptitude or IQ. It isn’t “knowing” the right people or having the right connections. According to the Bible, the key is humility. It all starts when we humbly admit to Him that we need His guidance. When we do, I can tell you from personal experience, God will open your eyes to see things you wouldn’t normally see. He will connect you to a wisdom that James says comes from above (James 3:17).

WEDNESDAY 8th April – JAMES 4:7-10

“Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded.Lament and mourn and weep! Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom.10 Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up.”

How counter this is to the ways of the world. In God’s Kingdom the principle is…The way up is down! You don’t get God’s empowerment and attention by asserting your own independence but by acknowledging your need for Him. By giving God His rightful place in your life…on the throne of your heart as Lord and King, you put yourself in a position to receive all he has purposed for you, including greater influence and recognition. Spend a little time today, ensuring you have given up control to Him.

TUESDAY 7th April – 1 PETER 5:1-5

“The elders who are among you I exhort, I who am a fellow elder and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that will be revealed: Shepherd the flock of God which is among you, serving as overseers, not by compulsion but willingly,[a] not for dishonest gain but eagerly; nor as being lords over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock; and when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that does not fade away.Likewise you younger people, submit yourselves to your elders. Yes, all of you be submissive to one another, and be clothed with humility, for “God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble.”

My thought for you today, is this…When you put others first, you attract God’s enabling power in your life! Often in a group some people are easily overlooked, but when you make these “forgotten” people the centre of attention, and when you look for those who have no reputation and let them know that they matter to you…something significant takes place. You are doing God’s work and it will cause a divine exchange to happen in your life. It will literally release the favour of God in you and towards you. Try it…you will be amazed!

MONDAY 6th April – PROVERBS 14:15-18; 26-27

“The simple believes every word, but the prudent considers well his steps. 16A wise man fears and departs from evil, but a fool rages and is self-confident. 17 A quick-tempered man acts foolishly, and a man of wicked intentions is hated. 18 The simple inherit folly, but the prudent are crowned with knowledge. 26 In the fear of the Lord there is strong confidence, and His children will have a place of refuge. 27 The fear of the Lord is a fountain of life,
to turn one away from the snares of death.”

As believers we have to be aware that traps are everywhere, but the bible says that a wise person looks where his foot is going to land before he takes a step. We need to pray for Godly discernment at all times. The enemy will often try to mislead us through people, so we need to learn to recognise his distractions. Ask the Lord, today, to keep you from being gullible. Let your prayer be, “Lord, let me be wise without becoming needlessly suspicious…Amen”


“Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing.Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up;does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails.  13 And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.”

How do we define or describe love? Well (1 Corinthians 13) is a great place to start. We know that God is love (1 John 4:8) and love comes from God (1 John 4:7) and for that reason we should love one another. But how do we know that we have the real deal? Well, let me give you a few things to think about! Look at how you behave…If others don’t easily annoy you, if you can rejoice when others are winning and you aren’t, if you don’t feel the need to “toot your own horn”, and if it’s easy to show others that you care…you have the real thing! If not, then ask the Father to let the Holy Spirit shed abroad His love anew and afresh in your heart today (Romans 5:5). Let Him embrace you with a fresh revelation of how much He loves you…it will make all the difference! KKC FEB 15


 12 He who is devoid of wisdom despises his neighbour, but a man of understanding holds his peace. 13 A talebearer reveals secrets, but he who is of a faithful spirit conceals a matter.”The Book of James warns us of the damage our words can do. (James 3:2-10) “For we all stumble in many things. If anyone does not stumble in word, he is a perfect man, able also to bridle the whole body. Indeed, we put bits in horses’ mouths that they may obey us, and we turn their whole body. Look also at ships: although they are so large and are driven by fierce winds, they are turned by a very small rudder wherever the pilot desires. Even so the tongue is a little member and boasts great things. See how great a forest a little fire kindles! And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity. The tongue is so set among our members that it defiles the whole body, and sets on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire by hell. For every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and creature of the sea, is tamed and has been tamed by mankind. But no man can tame the tongue. It is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. With it we bless our God and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in the similitude of God. 10 Out of the same mouth proceed blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not to be so.”

Tale-baring or gossiping is such a destructive thing and we are so easily drawn into it, often when we didn’t intend to. Almost every office, school classroom or neighbourhood will have its gossiper….pinch yourself and ask yourself…”I hope it’s not you?”

Our words can so damage people and even ruin someone’s reputation. Use your words today to build people up and not break them down. When and if you are confronted by gossip today, refuse to participate in it…in fact be bold and daring enough to stop it right there! Make a choice…my words are going to bless others and not curse them.


22 Understanding is a wellspring of life to him who has it. But the correction of fools is folly. 23 The heart of the wise teaches his mouth, and adds learning to his lips. 24 Pleasant words are like a honeycomb, Sweetness to the soul and health to the bones. 25 There is a way that seems right to a man, But its end is the way of death. 26 The person who labours labours for himself, for his hungry mouth drives him on. 27 An ungodly man digs up evil,
And it is on his lips like a burning fire. 28 A perverse man sows strife, and a whisperer separates the best of friends.
29 A violent man entices his neighbour, and leads him in a way that is not good. 30 He winks his eye to devise perverse things;
He pursues his lips and brings about evil. 31 The silver-haired head is a crown of glory, If it is found in the way of righteousness.32 He who is slow to anger is better than the mighty, And he who rules his spirit than he who takes a city.”

Our challenge today, is (verse 32) and it deals with a subject we all face, and that is anger. On a daily basis we are confronted with issues that anger us…sometimes for the right reasons and sometimes for the wrong reasons. Being angry is not, in itself, wrong. The Bible says that we are to be angry but not to sin (Ephesians 4:26), and we are not to let our anger continue unresolved. Sometimes anger, at injustice, for example, can motivate you to action. Here are some questions to ask yourself as you think about anger in your life: Is my anger motivating constructive action? Is it appropriate to the situation? Does my angry reaction reveal that I’m holding onto past hurts and wounds that I need to surrender to the Lord? One of the things I am working through right now is to never allow anger to be my first response! Often when I just take a moment to breathe and gain perspective, my reactions are very different, and the outcome so much more positive.


“If you think you know it all, you’re a fool for sure; real survivors learn wisdom from others.” (The Message Bible)God is omniscient, meaning He is all-knowing; we know and accept that as a fact. The challenge today, is how do we access that wisdom. We know that our first source is to ask God (James 1:5). Prayer is a tremendous way to open your heart and mind to listen for God’s still small voice. The Word of God is another source of wisdom (Psalm 119). But today, let’s be reminded that God’s wisdom arrives in all kinds of different packages, so be open, as our reading encourages us, to learn from the wisdom of others. When I am faced with challenging and difficult choices, I always try to consult with people with different kinds of strengths sometimes even those, I know, will have a different perspective to me!


13 Happy is the man who finds wisdom, And the man who gains understanding;
14 For her proceeds are better than the profits of silver, And her gain than fine gold. 15 She is more precious than rubies,
And all the things you may desire cannot compare with her. 16 Length of days is in her right hand, in her left hand riches and honour. 17 Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace. 18 She is a tree of life to those who take hold of her,
And happy are all who retain her. 19 The Lord by wisdom founded the earth; by understanding He established the heavens.”

The intricate wisdom of our God is seen everywhere, especially in His work of creation. The forces of nature are in perfect balance. Every living cell is a marvel of design. Scientists may try to disprove that there is a Creator God, behind all things…but for the believer, science actually documents the beauty and genius of God’s design. Be encouraged, today, to know, that that same God, is not only your Creator, but your Father. The same wisdom that he used, to sculpt the universe, guided Him, when He planned your life. So trust Him, even when you don’t know the details…He does!


“O Lord, You have searched me and known me.
You know my sitting down and my rising up;
You understand my thought afar off.
You comprehend my path and my lying down,
And are acquainted with all my ways.
For there is not a word on my tongue,
But behold, O Lord, You know it altogether.
You have hedged me behind and before,
And laid Your hand upon me.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;
It is high, I cannot attain it.

Where can I go from Your Spirit?
Or where can I flee from Your presence?
If I ascend into heaven, You are there;
If I make my bed in hell, behold, You are there.
If I take the wings of the morning,
And dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea,
10 Even there Your hand shall lead me,
And Your right hand shall hold me.
11 If I say, “Surely the darkness shall fall on me,”
Even the night shall be light about me;
12 Indeed, the darkness shall not hide from You,
But the night shines as the day;
The darkness and the light are both alike to You.

13 For You formed my inward parts;
You covered me in my mother’s womb.
14 I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Marvelous are Your works,
And that my soul knows very well.”

The beauty industry sells us an image of perfection. One company’s slogan is, “Because I’m worth it!” God, however, has been saying that about you all along! We need to be reminded today that we are worth God’s time and effort, His Son’s life and His forgiveness, His patience and His disciplining care, His fathering and His love. So we can say with confidence and assurance, “This is who I am…God says so!” Do that right now…as you start the day…and it will bring you security and unshakeable certainty!


“And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. 29 For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren. 30 Moreover whom He predestined, these He also called; whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified. 31 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? 32 He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things? 33 Who shall bring a charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. 34 Who is he who condemns? It is Christ who died, and furthermore is also risen, who is even at the right hand of God, who also makes intercession for us. 35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 36 As it is written: “For Your sake we are killed all day long;
We are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.”37 Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. 38 For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come”

The expectation of a smooth trouble free journey through life, planned by a God who won’t let us experience any pain or experience any trouble, can lead us to a spiritual crisis point when life doesn’t work out the way we expect it to. The fact is, that the Christian life is not a constant series of miracles. That is not to say that God does not intervene and fulfil His promises to us. What it does mean is that he is working it all out according to His master plan.


“So He spoke this parable to them, saying: “What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he loses one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness, and go after the one which is lost until he finds it? And when he has found it, he lays it on his shoulders, rejoicing. And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and neighbors, saying to them, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep which was lost!’ I say to you that likewise there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine just persons who need no repentance.“Or what woman, having ten silver coins  if she loses one coin, does not light a lamp, sweep the house, and search carefully until she finds it? And when she has found it, she calls her friends and neighbors together, saying, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found the piece which I lost!’ 10 Likewise, I say to you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.”

Often pictures of heaven focus on our joy at finding Jesus, but He also celebrates because he has found us. He so desperately wanted to find us that He left the comfort of heaven and died to rescue us, the angels cheering Him on every step of the way. Jesus had plans for you. He pursues you because He wants you to be part of eternity with Him.


Then I looked, and behold, a whirlwind was coming out of the north, a great cloud with raging fire engulfing itself; and brightness was all around it and radiating out of its midst like the color of amber, out of the midst of the fire. Also from within it came the likeness of four living creatures. And thiswas their appearance: they had the likeness of a man. Each one had four faces, and each one had four wings. Their legs were straight, and the soles of their feet were like the soles of calves’ feet. They sparkled like the color of burnished bronze. The hands of a man were under their wings on their four sides; and each of the four had faces and wings. Their wings touched one another. The creatures did not turn when they went, but each one went straight forward.

10 As for the likeness of their faces, each had the face of a man; each of the four had the face of a lion on the right side, each of the four had the face of an ox on the left side, and each of the four had the face of an eagle. 11 Thus were their faces. Their wings stretched upward; two wings of each one touched one another, and two covered their bodies. 12 And each one went straight forward; they went wherever the spirit wanted to go, and they did not turn when they went.

13 As for the likeness of the living creatures, their appearance was like burning coals of fire, like the appearance of torches going back and forth among the living creatures. The fire was bright, and out of the fire went lightning. 14 And the living creatures ran back and forth, in appearance like a flash of lightning.

15 Now as I looked at the living creatures, behold, a wheel was on the earth beside each living creature with its four faces. 16 The appearance of the wheels and their workings was like the color of beryl, and all four had the same likeness. The appearance of their workings was, as it were, a wheel in the middle of a wheel. 17 When they moved, they went toward any one of four directions; they did not turn aside when they went. 18 As for their rims, they were so high they were awesome; and their rims were full of eyes, all around the four of them. 19 When the living creatures went, the wheels went beside them; and when the living creatures were lifted up from the earth, the wheels were lifted up. 20 Wherever the spirit wanted to go, they went, because there the spirit went; and the wheels were lifted together with them, for the spirit of the living creatures  was in the wheels. 21 When those went, these went; when those stood, these stood; and when those were lifted up from the earth, the wheels were lifted up together with them, for the spirit of the living creatures  was in the wheels.

22 The likeness of the firmament above the heads of the living creatures[c] was like the color of an awesome crystal, stretched out over their heads. 23 And under the firmament their wings spread outstraight, one toward another. Each one had two which covered one side, and each one had two which covered the other side of the body. 24 When they went, I heard the noise of their wings, like the noise of many waters, like the voice of the Almighty, a tumult like the noise of an army; and when they stood still, they let down their wings. 25 A voice came from above the firmament that was over their heads; whenever they stood, they let down their wings.

26 And above the firmament over their heads was the likeness of a throne, in appearance like a sapphire stone; on the likeness of the throne was a likeness with the appearance of a man high above it. 27 Also from the appearance of His waist and upward I saw, as it were, the color of amber with the appearance of fire all around within it; and from the appearance of His waist and downward I saw, as it were, the appearance of fire with brightness all around. 28 Like the appearance of a rainbow in a cloud on a rainy day, so was the appearance of the brightness all around it. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the Lord. So when I saw it, I fell on my face, and I heard a voice of One speaking.”

What do you think of when you hear the word “heaven”? Ezekiel only caught a glimpse of a shadow of God’s presence, but that was enough to knock him flat. In this life, we only catch fleeting glimpses of God’s heavenly glory, often in the most unexpected people and places. These are treasures to spur us on in our journey of faith.


“He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High
Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.
I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress;
My God, in Him I will trust.”

Surely He shall deliver you from the snare of the fowler
And from the perilous pestilence.
He shall cover you with His feathers,
And under His wings you shall take refuge;
His truth shall be your shield and buckler.
You shall not be afraid of the terror by night,
Nor of the arrow that flies by day,
Nor of the pestilence that walks in darkness,
Nor of the destruction that lays waste at noonday.

A thousand may fall at your side,
And ten thousand at your right hand;
But it shall not come near you.
Only with your eyes shall you look,
And see the reward of the wicked.

Because you have made the Lord, who is my refuge,
Even the Most High, your dwelling place,
10 No evil shall befall you,
Nor shall any plague come near your dwelling;
11 For He shall give His angels charge over you,
To keep you in all your ways.
12 In their hands they shall bear you up,
Lest you dash your foot against a stone.
13 You shall tread upon the lion and the cobra,
The young lion and the serpent you shall trample underfoot.

14 “Because he has set his love upon Me, therefore I will deliver him;
I will set him on high, because he has known My name.
15 He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him;
will be with him in trouble;
I will deliver him and honor him.
16 With long life I will satisfy him,
And show him My salvation.”

In this psalm God tells us that He is our shelter, our rest, our refuge, cover, dwelling-place, shield and fortress. He will protect, guard and save. It could hardly be more comprehensive. What a mighty God we serve! All you have to do is creep into your Heavenly Father’s arms, in child-like faith, and you can have absolute security in whatever situation you find yourself in!

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