Categories
Bible Verse Devotional Jesus

Self Examination in Times of Distress

Part One- Looking at Our Sin

Looking at the sin of others without examining ourselves leads to wrong thoughts, attitudes and perspectives. It separates us from God’s will for our lives. It’s important to our Heavenly Father how we use our thoughts and emotions. Yes, we can have emotions (like anger) but we can’t allow them to cause us to sin against God or our neighbor. Ephesians 4:26

Categories
Bible Study Bible Verse Jesus

Flowers and Faith

““Consider how the wild flowers grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you, not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today, and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, how much more will he clothe you—you of little faith!”

Luke 12:27–28, NIV

Jesus gave this series of teachings in Luke Chapter 12 on his way to Jerusalem. We can imagine that he passed meadows of wildflowers on his way. He may have referred to the scene as he elaborated on his admonition not to worry but to trust in God’s provision.

Categories
Bible Verse

Joy for Today

Lord, help me live with joy today confident that you will take care of tomorrow.

Categories
Devotional Jesus

Why Worry?- Day 7 of Reflections in Luke 12- Jesus and Worry

“Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to your life? Since you cannot do this very little thing, why do you worry about the rest?”

Luke 12:25–26, NIV

Worry is something that is hard for us not to do. Jesus wants to help. Read what he says in the Bible about worry and be comforted. Let’s look closely at a Bible verse in which Jesus teaches his disciples about worry.

Categories
Devotional Jesus

Consider – Day 6 of Luke 12, Reflections on Jesus and Fear

“Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds!” (Luke 12:24, NIV)

Jesus wants you to trust him to provide for you. He also wants to know how valuable you are to God. Let’s look at Jesus discussing ravens using the AROMA Approach to Bible Study method.

Categories
Devotional Jesus

Day 5 Faith Over Fear- Reflections on Luke 12

“Then Jesus said to his disciples: “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear. For life is more than food, and the body more than clothes.” Luke 12:22–23, NIV

Worry interferes with the Kingdom work of the Christian because it shows misplaced priorities. What does Jesus teach his disciples?Let’s use the action engagement steps of the AROMA Approach to study this passage more closely and see what God wants to teach us our worry and his provision.

Categories
Devotional Jesus

Should You Hoard? Jesus and Refections from Luke 12: Plenty

“You have plenty of grain laid up for many years.”

“And he told them this parable: “The ground of a certain rich man yielded an abundant harvest. He thought to himself, ‘What shall I do? I have no place to store my crops.’ “Then he said, ‘This is what I’ll do. I will tear down my barns and build bigger ones, and there I will store my surplus grain. And I’ll say to myself, “You have plenty of grain laid up for many years. Take life easy; eat, drink and be merry.” ’ “But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your life will be demanded from you. Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself?’ “This is how it will be with whoever stores up things for themselves but is not rich toward God.””

Luke 12:16–21, NIV

Faith in God vs hoarding. One man stored his treasures and wasn’t rich towards God. What happened?

Categories
Bible Verse Devotional Jesus

Watch Out!

Coronavirus, You and Jesus

Day 3- “Watch Out!” for…

“Watch out!” Jesus gives an emphatic warning as he teaches his disciples on the way to Jerusalem.

Watch out for what, Jesus?

Categories
Devotional Jesus

Preparedness

Jesus, Coronavirus and You: Lessons from the Book of Luke by Victoria Carrington

““Be dressed ready for service and keep your lamps burning, like servants waiting for their master to return from a wedding banquet, so that when he comes and knocks they can immediately open the door for him. It will be good for those servants whose master finds them watching when he comes. Truly I tell you, he will dress himself to serve, will have them recline at the table and will come and wait on them. It will be good for those servants whose master finds them ready, even if he comes in the middle of the night or toward daybreak. But understand this: If the owner of the house had known at what hour the thief was coming, he would not have let his house be broken into. You also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him.”” (Luke 12:35–40, NIV)

Toilet tissue. Hand sanitizer. Bottled water.

These are probably the first things that come to your mind when I mention “preparedness”. Preparedness is the state of being ready for what’s to come. It can give you peace of mind and confidence. Like the Proverbs 31 woman, a prepared person rejoices about the future. (“Strength and honor are her clothing; She shall rejoice in time to come.” Proverbs 31:25)

For the follower of Jesus, what does it mean to be prepared? In reading the Gospels, particularly in Luke, we read what Jesus taught on this topic.

In going through my Bible survey course, I am in the book of Luke. A major theme in Luke is preparedness. We see Jesus contrast earthly preparedness with heavenly preparedness. He teaches in parables at times about the relative importance of each. In the story of the rich man who built storehouses, Jesus emphasizes that we can’t effectively prepare for earthly calamities. Why not? We can’t know what is coming. Other examples about the futility of worry continue the teaching of Jesus in this area.

Conversely, Jesus makes it clear that preparing for his return is something that we can control and should work towards, like the wise virgins who kept their lamps burning. Jesus wants us to focus on heavenly preparedness. Any other focus is dangerous to our soul’s eternity.

There is one future event we can be certain of. That is our death. You will die, I will die. The main question of our lives should be preparing for this certainty according to Jesus.Will Jesus greet you with “Well done, good and faithful servant.” (Matthew 25:21) or will you cast away as a goat from the sheep? (Matthew 25:31-46)

Why should we not be concerned about the future? Because that’s God’s job. He knows the end from the beginning. We are free to pursue the Kingdom of God by living in obedience. We don’t want our hearts and minds to have a misplaced focus when Jesus returns or calls us home.

Will you commit to dedicating your life to the most important preparedness of all and teach others to do the same?

Lord, Help us to keep our focus on serving you and getting ready for your return. Show us how to teach the truth of heavenly preparedness to others, starting with our families. You are a holy God, worthy to be praised and we seek to glorify you in all that we do. Come quickly, Lord Jesus!

Let God take care of your future while you focus on living in obedience to God today. Victoria Carrington

Sign up using the link below to join the Aroma Approach to Bible Study and get inspiration and information by email.

Categories
Devotional Jesus

Coronavirus, You and Jesus

Day 2- You and the Sparrow

“Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? Yet not one of them is forgotten by God. Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.” (Luke 12:6–7, NIV)

God wants you to choose faith in Him over fear of being forgotten. In this passage, Jesus teaches his listeners about God’s attention to detail to dispel fear. To do this, Jesus makes an argument in a familiar pattern illustrating his skill as a master teacher.

He argues from the lesser to the greater. The lesser sparrows are not forgotten by God so surely you who are greater than a sparrow will not be forgotten. The very hairs on your head are numbered by God!

Jesus summarizes the application of his argument by commanding, “Do not be afraid”.

Prayer

Lord, I thank you for your loving kindness. You are the Creator of all creatures, from the lesser to the greater and you care for us all. Your love is from everlasting to everlasting. You are my joy and my salvation. Help me to rest in the knowledge that you will never forget me. Amen.

Read, pray and then meditate on this word throughout the day.

For more background and context on this passage, consult an online commentary, study Bible or app using Bible Hub, Logos or Bible Gateway.