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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.

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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.

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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.

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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?

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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?

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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

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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.

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Devotional Jesus

Jesus and Coronavirus

Day 1- Jesus Teaches Who to Fear

““I tell you, my friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body and after that can do no more. But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear him who, after your body has been killed, has authority to throw you into hell. Yes, I tell you, fear him.” (Luke 12:4–5, NIV)

Who do you fear?

Do you fear that which brings death and disease?

Is your mind often filled with “what ifs”?

Do you have the proper perspective on death?

How does Jesus want you to think about people (or by extension things) that could kill you?

If you are a born-again child of God, you no longer need to fear death. Jesus died on the cross that you could be reconciled to our holy God and spend all eternity in heaven.

Psalm 27:1 says it this way-

The LORD is my light and my salvation; Whom shall I fear? The LORD is the strength of my life; Of whom shall I be afraid? Psalm 27:1 (NKJV)

Jesus is our light and salvation. Trust in him today.

Prayer

Lord, free me from the fear of man, disease, accidents or any cause of death. Help me to put all my faith and trust in you. 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.

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Devotional Encouragement

Faith of a baby robin

Sitting outside before the snow came back last week, I saw an amazing sight more close up than ever before. Newly hatched baby robins were in the nest with their mouths open to the sky, eagerly stretching to eat. A few thoughts came to my mind about how I should be like that baby robin.

What I noticed about the baby robins:

  1. Trust- mom will be back. Do I trust God even when he doesn’t seem immediately present?
  2. Eager- to eat nourishment- do I hunger and thirst after righteousness?
  3. Accepting- of what mom gave. Am I accepting of all that God gives me even if it isn’t what I asked for?
  4. Always hungry- mouths wide open, unashamed. Do I continue to want to grow in Christ and be fed from his Word often?
  5. Still- waiting patiently in the nest, waiting to receive. Have I taken time to be still and know that God is?
  6. The nest shakes as the branch sways but the baby birds don’t run off out of fear of falling. They don’t seem scared at all-only hungry lol. When the circumstances of my life get shaken up and things seem unstable, do I hold on to God?
  7. They don’t fear the hungry cats below- Do I fear my enemies or do I always remember that evil is defeated and God has not given me a spirit of fear?

I love how God speaks through his creation.

Dear Lord, make me more like the baby robin. Help me to fully trust you and seek you always. Amen.

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Devotional Jesus

Christian Response in Times of Fear- Part Two

The Commandments of Jesus

Spreading fear on social media or anywhere else puts you in direct contradiction with the commands of Jesus.

Do Not Fear

We are not to have a spirit of fear (2 Timothy 1:7) so we definitely shouldn’t be sharing ideas about the future that cause fear. We are not to fear politicians, billionaires or experts who “may” do terrible things to us, restrict our freedom, or persecute us. We are to only fear “the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell.” Matthew 10:28

Do Not Worry

Fearful posts are fueled by worry. What if…. or Let me warn you….. Worry is a sin. Jesus said do not worry about tomorrow. (Matthew 6:34)
Jesus said we change nothing by worrying.
He wants you to trust in his love and care. He said
“Fear not, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.” Luke 12:32

Once you obey and stop worrying, you can encourage others to do the same. In this way you fulfill the Great Commission, teaching others to obey the commands of Jesus. (Matthew 28:20)

Love

Jesus said love ❤️ your neighbor. “The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”” Mark 12:31
18% of the population, about 40 million adults, have been diagnosed with anxiety disorders. Many more suffer without being diagnosed. It is almost certain that someone reading your posts will already be quite anxious. Are you being a Good Samaritan, helping to heal their wounds or soothe their anxiety? Or are you spreading anxious perspectives with little thought of how the vulnerable may be affected?

Encourage One Another

The Bible has much to say as it addressed the early church about how believers were to help one another.

For every verse posted about fearing a possible future situation, how many have you posted to encourage your brothers and sisters in Christ?

You can share posts that encourage others to:

  • pray without ceasing
  • think on things that are lovely and true
  • keep their hearts 💕 and mind focused on Jesus
  • be content in all things
  • remember that God works all things together for good for those who love him
  • pray and ask God’s help in all things, with gratitude.

Prayer

Lord, help us resist the temptation to spread fear in this time of uncertainty and heightened anxiety. Guide us is spreading our knowledge of you and encouraging others to love 💗, know and obey you. Help us take our eyes off of the future and fear and to focus on you and love ❤️ you with our whole heart, mind, soul and strength. Amen.