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Daily Devotionals
by Peter Kennedy
Series: DEVOTIONS IN Minor Prophets
Devotional - Remembering The Law
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Sunday Sep 29, 2019
Devotional - Remembering The Law

“Remember the law of my servant Moses, the decrees and laws I gave him at Horeb for all Israel.” – Malachi 4:4

 

In December 2017, businessman John Bushman wanted to turn Music City Mall in Lewisville, Texas into a community space where people can find some "peace and love" in the Ten Commandments. He erected a display of the Ten Commandments on the lower level of the mall.

On the upper level of the mall, John erected a second display. It is the words of Jesus’ Greatest Commandments written in Matthew 22 “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’”

John said: “We're not trying to overwhelm anyone or make a statement. We just believe in the Lord's love. That's the sole reason. We hope when someone sees it, it will touch their heart and give them new hope that day.”

 

The Lord loves us and He desires us to remember and follow His laws. He gave them to us to protect us. Today in prayer, praise the Lord for His laws and remember them throughout the day.

 

“The propitious smiles of heaven can never be expected on a nation that disregards the eternal rules of order and right which Heaven itself has ordained.” – George Washington

 

God’s Word: “Oh, how I love your law! I meditate on it all day long.” – Psalm 119:97

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE MINOR PROPHETS

Devotional - Gladly Give
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Thursday Sep 26, 2019
Devotional - Gladly Give

“Will a man rob God? Yet you rob me. ‘But you ask, 'How do we rob you?' ‘In tithes and offerings.’” – Malachi 3:8

 

In October 2012, Missionary Richard Lawson found himself traveling in Cambodia just after a flood. He went to a church that was heavily damaged by the deluge. The church did an offering to feed the families who lost everything. Richard only had $21.50 in his wallet. As the offering basket came to Richard, he decided to keep all of the money and passed the basket to the next person.

He then heard the Lord sweetly speak: “Whose $20 is it?”

Richard replied “Yours Lord.”

That next person then unexpectedly gave the basket back to Richard. He gave the $20 bill as his offering and then used the last $1.50 he had to take a taxi back to his hotel room.

Completely broke, Richard decided to check his computer. A friend back in the United States, who couldn’t sleep, was prompted to get up at midnight and randomly send Richard $200. 

“I gave my last $20,” said Richard “And He (the Lord) multiplied it ten times.”

 

The Lord desires for us to be cheerful givers. Today in prayer, ask the Lord to give you wisdom and joy in your giving.

 

“As the purse is emptied, the heart is filled.” – Victor Hugo

 

God’s Word: “Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.” – 2 Corinthians 9:7

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE MINOR PROPHETS

Devotional - Do Not Be Stubborn
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Wednesday Sep 25, 2019
Devotional - Do Not Be Stubborn

“But they refused to pay attention; stubbornly they turned their backs and stopped up their ears. They made their hearts as hard as flint and would not listen to the law or to the words that the LORD Almighty had sent by his Spirit through the earlier prophets. So the LORD Almighty was very angry.” – Zechariah 7:11-12

 

Emmett Pearson of Vasa, Minnesota grew a beard for 38 years, which is almost as impressive when you consider that his wife didn't approve of it.

Following the Minnesota Vikings' third Super Bowl defeat to the Pittsburgh Steelers in 1975, Pearson vowed to keep his whiskers ungroomed until the Vikings finally won the big game.

As any Vikings fan already knows, they never did. Pearson even refused necessary surgery on an artery on his neck until doctors promised not to shave him. "I made a vow, and I'm going to stick with it," Pearson said, "but I think my wife would just as soon I give it up."

Pearson died in 2013 at age 83, his stubborn ability to keep a promise outlasted by the Vikings' stubborn inability to deliver.

 

Are you stubborn to the point of being foolish? Today in prayer, confess any stubbornness in your heart to the Lord and seek to follow Jesus in all that you do.

 

“I always believed in God and Christ, but I was in rebellion - trying to make my relationship with God fit into my life instead of making my life fit in with him. I was stubborn.” – Scott Stapp

 

God’s Word: “But they did not listen or pay attention; instead, they followed the stubborn inclinations of their evil hearts. They went backward and not forward.” – Jeremiah 7:24

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE MINOR PROPHETS

Devotional - Be Compassionate
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Tuesday Sep 24, 2019
Devotional - Be Compassionate

“This is what the Lord Almighty says: 'Administer true justice; show mercy and compassion to one another.’” – Zechariah 7:9

 

Despite owning a home perched atop a high cliff with a scenic ocean view in Sydney, Australia, Don and Moya Ritchie live on a plot of real estate that can best be described as something out of a bad dream. The rocky cliff is known as The Gap–the most notorious suicide destination in Australia.

While most people would move away, the Ritchies have stayed for almost 50 years, saving an estimated 160 people from taking the leap.

Every morning Mr. Ritchie wakes up and looks out the window to see if anyone is “standing alone too close to the precipice.” If he senses someone may be contemplating suicide, he approaches him or her and asks if they’d like to talk over a cup of tea. “I’m offering them an alternative,” he said.

The retired life insurance salesman said he’s not “burdened” by the reality of what happens in close proximity to his house. Instead, he and his wife of 58 years have learned to look at it as a calling. He said it’s wonderful to have saved so many, to have “sold them” on life.

“I think,” said Moya, “isn’t it wonderful that we live here and we can help people?”

In recognition of their compassionate efforts, the Ritchies were named 2010’s Citizens of the Year. In 2006, the government recognized Don’s efforts with a Medal of the Order of Australia, among the nation’s highest civilian honors.

In their living room hangs a painting of a sunrise that someone left in their mailbox. On it is a message thanking him for being “an angel that walks amongst us.”

 

The Lord puts us in situations every day where we are to be compassionate to others and to demonstrate the love of God. Today in prayer, ask the Lord how you can be more compassionate to others.

 

“Do you wish to receive mercy? Show mercy to your neighbor?” – John Chrysostom

 

God’s Word: “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You give a tenth of your spices--mint, dill and cummin. But you have neglected the more important matters of the law--justice, mercy and faithfulness. You should have practiced the latter, without neglecting the former.” – Matthew 23:23

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE MINOR PROPHETS

Devotional - By His Spirit
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Monday Sep 23, 2019
Devotional - By His Spirit

“So he said to me, ‘This is the word of the LORD to Zerubbabel: 'Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,' says the LORD Almighty.’” – Zechariah 4:6

 

Canadian Pastor Bill Crowder gives the following illustration of the need to be Spirit led: “The first winter that my wife Marlene and I were married was marked by severe blizzards. I can vividly remember one Sunday when we awoke to find that the electricity had been knocked out by an ice storm. Huddled around a battery-powered radio for news on that frigid Sunday, we heard a most unusual announcement. The announcer, before giving the list of church services canceled due to the ice storm, said, ‘The following churches will be closed due to lack of power.’ What an interesting comment! I knew what he meant, but I was struck by what he said. The idea of churches closing due to lack of power conjures up some spiritual parallels that directly tie into Jesus’ promise of the Spirit.”

 

The Spirit of our Lord is living and active in our world. Today in prayer, give thanks to the Lord for His Holy Spirit and seek to follow Christ in all that you do.

 

“There is no better evangelist in the world than the Holy Spirit.” – Dwight L. Moody

 

God’s Word: “For John baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.” – Acts 1:5

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE MINOR PROPHETS

Devotional - Be A Good Steward
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Sunday Sep 22, 2019
Devotional - Be A Good Steward

“You have planted much, but have harvested little. You eat, but never have enough. You drink, but never have your fill. You put on clothes, but are not warm. You earn wages, only to put them in a purse with holes in it.” – Haggai 1:6

 

In November 1981, Lou Eisenberg was making $225 a week changing light bulbs in a midtown New York City office building when he won $5 million in the New York State lottery, which at the time was the largest lottery win ever. After taxes, he received payments of $120,000 annually for 20 years.

Lou bought a condo in Florida, took trips to Europe and Hawaii, and gambled. He also gave cash to whoever he figured needed it. Of his spending, he said, “I lived for the day.”

Shortly after cashing his last check in 2001, Eisenberg was broke. For the remainder of his years he lived in a mobile home on social security and a pension income that amounted to about $1,000 a month.

 

The Lord wants us to be a good steward of all that He has entrusted to us. Today in prayer, seek the Lord in His Word and develop the discipline and wisdom the Lord wants you to have in being a good steward.

 

“All the blessings we enjoy are Divine deposits, committed to our trust on this condition, that they should be dispensed for the benefit of our neighbors.” – John Calvin

 

God’s Word: “When anyone came to a heap of twenty measures, there were only ten. When anyone went to a wine vat to draw fifty measures, there were only twenty.” – Haggai 2:16

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE MINOR PROPHETS

Devotional - Don't Be Arrogant
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Thursday Sep 19, 2019
Devotional - Don't Be Arrogant

“Her prophets are arrogant; they are treacherous men. Her priests profane the sanctuary and do violence to the law.” – Zephaniah 3:4

 

Louis XIV was one of France’s greatest kings.  He was known as Louis the Great and the Sun King for the brilliance of his court. His reign of 72 years and 110 days is the longest recorded of any monarch of a sovereign country in European history.

During Louis' long reign, France was the leading European power, and it fought three major wars: the Franco-Dutch War, the War of the League of Augsburg, and the War of the Spanish Succession. It was during the War of the Spanish Succession that the pivotal battle against the English took place at Blenheim. When Louis received the news of his crushing defeat at Blenheim, he purportedly proclaimed, “How could God do this to me?  After all I have done for Him!” 

 

Arrogance is a sin. Today in prayer, confess any arrogance in your life and seek to walk humbly with Jesus.

 

“The first barrier to meekness arises whenever we claim as our own what is really a gift of God. To live in meekness, we must try to remember that all we are, have, and can do is a gift. It is an act of arrogance to place ourselves at the center of being and doing. Only God belongs there.” – Susan Annette Muto

 

God’s Word: “To fear the Lord is to hate evil; I hate pride and arrogance, evil behavior and perverse speech.” – Proverbs 8:13

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE MINOR PROPHETS

Devotional - Be Humble
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Wednesday Sep 18, 2019
Devotional - Be Humble

“Seek the LORD, all you humble of the land, you who do what he commands. Seek righteousness, seek humility; perhaps you will be sheltered on the day of the LORD's anger.” – Zephaniah 2:3

 

On March 30, 1981, President Ronald Reagan was shot and wounded by John Hinckley Jr. as he was returning to his limousine after a speaking engagement at the Washington D.C. Hilton Hotel. 

A bullet that ricocheted off the side of the presidential limousine and hit him in the left underarm seriously wounded the President, breaking a rib, puncturing a lung, and causing serious internal bleeding. He was rushed to George Washington University Hospital and remained there until April 11.

While the President was in the hospital, an aide entered his room and was alarmed to find him on hands and knees, wiping up some water he had spilled from the sink. “Mr. President!” exclaimed the aide, “We have people for this.” Reagan simply replied that he didn’t want the nurses getting into trouble because of water on the bathroom floor.

 

Are you a humble person, or do you wrestle with pride? Today in prayer, seek the Lord with all of your heart and seek to be humble in all that you do.

 

“He who knows himself best esteems himself least.” – H.G. Brown

 

God’s Word: “Young men, in the same way be submissive to those who are older. All of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because, ‘God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.’” – 1 Peter 5:5

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE MINOR PROPHETS

Devotional - The Lord Is My Strength
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Tuesday Sep 17, 2019
Devotional - The Lord Is My Strength

“The Sovereign LORD is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer, he enables me to go on the heights.” – Habakkuk 3:19

 

One Sunday evening Pastor Jim Cymbala, Pastor of the Brooklyn Tabernacle, was about to preach when he was overcome with emotion. He sensed something was wrong in the congregation and he just sobbed. The organist played: “I Need Thee, Oh, I Need Thee.” Suddenly a young usher came forward, threw himself on the altar and cried: “I’m Sorry, I’m sorry. I won’t do it again.” It turned out the usher was stealing from the collection plate.

He later wrote how about the discovery he made as he acknowledged his weakness: "That evening, when I was at my lowest, confounded by obstacles, bewildered by the darkness that surrounded us, unable even to continue preaching, I discovered an astonishing truth: God is attracted to weakness. He can't resist those who humbly and honestly admit how desperately they need him. Our weakness, in fact, makes room for his power."

 

We cannot rely on our own strength; it will fail us. Today in prayer, pray that the Lord will be your strength in all that you do.

 

“We can never obey God in our own strength, but we can always trust Him to provide the strength we need. If we trust ourselves, we will faint and fall; but if we wait on the Lord by faith, we will receive strength for the journey.” – Warren Wiersbe

 

God’s Word: “God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.” – Psalm 46:1

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE MINOR PROPHETS

Devotional - Desire Renewal
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Monday Sep 16, 2019
Devotional - Desire Renewal

“Lord, I have heard of your fame; I stand in awe of your deeds, O Lord. Renew them in our day, in our time make them known; in wrath remember mercy.” – Habakkuk 3:2

 

In August 1801, Presbyterian minister Barton W. Stone of the Presbyterian Church at Cane Ridge, Kentucky, organized a camp meeting based on Scottish traditions of Holy Fairs. It would run from Friday night through Sunday. The camp included the "large number of ministers, the action sermon, the tables, the tent, the successive servings" of communion, all part of the evangelical Presbyterian tradition and "communion season" known in Scotland.

Crowds of 25,000 traveled by foot and wagon from the Southern and Mid-Atlantic States to attend the camp meeting. The gathering was noted for an awesome atmosphere that evoked spontaneous outbursts of repentance. It has been described as the "[l]argest and most famous camp meeting of the Second Great Awakening." This camp meeting was arguably the pioneering event in the history of frontier camp meetings in America.

 

The Lord desires us to be excited about Him and to turn our hearts toward Him! Today in prayer, praise the Lord for your new life in Jesus. Ask the Lord to renew that desire to love and follow Him.

 

“We've lost sight of the fact that some things are always right and some things are always wrong. We've lost our reference point. We don't have any moral philosophy to undergird our way of life in this country, and our way of life is in serious jeopardy and serious danger unless something happens. And that something must be a spiritual revival.” – Billy Graham

 

God’s Word: “Restore us, O God Almighty; make your face shine upon us, that we may be saved.” – Psalm 80:7

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE MINOR PROPHETS

Devotional - Living By Faith
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Sunday Sep 15, 2019
Devotional - Living By Faith

“See, he is puffed up; his desires are not upright-- but the righteous will live by his faith” – Habakkuk 2:4

 

As a young man preparing to go to China, Hudson Taylor determined to learn to live by faith alone while he was still in England. His resolve was "to learn before leaving England to move man through God by prayer alone." He worked for a doctor and Hudson was paid quarterly. When the time drew near to receive his salary, Hudson was disturbed that his employer said nothing about it. Hudson had only one half-crown piece, but he determined not to break his resolution and ask for his salary. While visiting a needy home on a Sunday, Hudson felt led of God to give his last coin to the needy family. The next day he received an anonymous gift through the mail, four times what he had given to the poor! The following Saturday, the doctor finished up his work and said, "Taylor, is not your salary due again?" Hudson told him that it was and became disappointed when he learned that the doctor had forgotten about the salary due and sent all his funds to the bank! Hudson prayed about the matter (for he had bills of his own to pay) and left it with the Lord. That evening, the doctor visited Hudson and said that one of his richest patients had come over after business hours to pay his bill! He gave the money to Hudson, who rejoiced. He had learned he could trust God and therefore go to China as a missionary.

 

We grow in righteousness when we live by faith in Jesus Christ. Today in prayer, ask the Lord how you can trust Him more.

 

 “The essence of faith is being satisfied with all God is for us in Jesus.” – John Piper

 

God’s Word: “For in the gospel a righteousness from God is revealed, a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: ‘The righteous will live by faith.’” – Romans 1:17

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE MINOR PROPHETS

Devotional - He Is Our Refuge
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Thursday Sep 12, 2019
Devotional - He Is Our Refuge

“The LORD is good, a refuge in times of trouble. He cares for those who trust in him” – Nahum 1:7

 

An area of refuge is a designated location within a building specially designed to hold people safely during an emergency. In other words, an area of refuge is set aside for situations when evacuation may not be possible or is otherwise unsafe. For example, patients in a hospital may not be able to use a stairwell to exit the building because there is a fire. People can wait in the area of refuge safely until rescued by firefighters or emergency rescue teams. This area may also have the name “area of rescue assistance.”

These areas are for the elderly, people with disabilities or operators in a critical facility who cannot leave their station (military base, power station, prison) or any person who cannot access an escape route.

The requirements for an area of refuge is a location adjacent to an emergency exit path, signs designated where to go to shelter, a fire barrier and fresh air. It must also have a communication system.

In many ways, God meets those requirements in our spiritual life. In Him we have safe shelter.  

 

In difficult times, we can come to Our Heavenly Father and He will provide refuge. Today in prayer, thank Christ that in Him we can find refuge in times of trouble.

 

“When we stray from His presence, He longs for you to come back. He weeps that you are missing out on His love, protection and provision. He throws His arms open, runs toward you, gathers you up, and welcomes you home.” – Charles Stanley

 

God’s Word: “I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.” – John 14:18

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE MINOR PROPHETS

Devotional - Love Mercy
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Thursday Sep 12, 2019
Devotional - Love Mercy

“He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” – Micah 6:8

 

Henri Nouwen was a Dutch Catholic priest, professor, writer and theologian. He took a sabbatical from teaching and for a year researched the subject of compassion. Among other things, he decided to interview significant leaders. This took them to Washington, D.C., and to an appointment with then Senator Hubert Humphrey of Minnesota. He walked into his office and sat down as he remained behind his desk. Senator Humphrey said, “How can I help you?” Henri replied: “I’ve come to ask you, what is compassion?” The senator was taken back by a most unusual question in a congressional office. He got up from behind his desk, came around, and sat with them. He then picked up a #2 pencil and said, “In our country the whole lead and yellow length of this pencil is competition. Then at the very end of it we have this little eraser, and that in our country is compassion. Ours is not a country based on compassion but rather in its length and breadth is based on competition. But when we smear, blot, mess up things and people with our competition, we turn it around and, with this little fixer up of what we have messed up, we tidy things with compassion.

 

We need to appreciate the Lord’s compassion and mercies toward us and extend mercy to others. Today in prayer, praise Lord for His mercy and follow His example.

 

“The essence of justice is mercy.” – Edwin Hubbel Chapin

 

God’s Word: “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You give a tenth of your spices--mint, dill and cummin. But you have neglected the more important matters of the law--justice, mercy and faithfulness. You should have practiced the latter, without neglecting the former.” – Matthew 23:23

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE MINOR PROPHETS

Devotional - Show Mercy
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Wednesday Sep 11, 2019
Devotional - Show Mercy

“He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” – Micah 6:8

 

Henri Nouwen was a Dutch Catholic priest, professor, writer and theologian. He took a sabbatical from teaching and for a year researched the subject of compassion. Among other things, he decided to interview significant leaders. This took them to Washington, D.C., and to an appointment with then Senator Hubert Humphrey of Minnesota. He walked into his office and sat down as he remained behind his desk. Senator Humphrey said, “How can I help you?” Henri replied: “I’ve come to ask you, what is compassion?” The senator was taken back by a most unusual question in a congressional office. He got up from behind his desk, came around, and sat with them. He then picked up a #2 pencil and said, “In our country the whole lead and yellow length of this pencil is competition. Then at the very end of it we have this little eraser, and that in our country is compassion. Ours is not a country based on compassion but rather in its length and breadth is based on competition. But when we smear, blot, mess up things and people with our competition, we turn it around and, with this little fixer up of what we have messed up, we tidy things with compassion.

 

We need to appreciate the Lord’s compassion and mercies toward us and extend mercy to others. Today in prayer, praise Lord for His mercy and follow His example.

 

“The essence of justice is mercy.” – Edwin Hubbel Chapin

 

God’s Word: “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You give a tenth of your spices--mint, dill and cummin. But you have neglected the more important matters of the law--justice, mercy and faithfulness. You should have practiced the latter, without neglecting the former.” – Matthew 23:23

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE MINOR PROPHETS

Devotional - God's Plan
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Tuesday Sep 10, 2019
Devotional - God's Plan

“But they do not know the thoughts of the LORD; they do not understand his plan, he who gathers them like sheaves to the threshing floor.” – Micah 4:12  

 

Christian author and speaker Zig Ziglar talked about how in God’s plan redeeming people is the priceless act of God. He put it in great perspective when he asked his readers to think about the priceless masterpieces painted by DaVinci or Michelangelo. Then Zig wrote, “I am roughly familiar with the price of the canvass and the paints. In and of themselves, they are not worth much at all. No -- The value of the painting comes from the touch of the Master’s Hand.”

We are priceless, because we were created by the greatest Master of all. Our lives have great value, because we were formed by the Hand of God for His good purpose.

 

The Lord’s plans for us are much greater than our own. Today in prayer, praise the Lord that God has a plan for your life and seek to do His will in all that you do.

 

“Since God is the highest good, He would not allow any evil to exist in his works unless his omnipotence and goodness were such as to bring good even out of evil.” – Augustine

 

God’s Word: “‘For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,’ declares the LORD.” – Isaiah 55:8

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE MINOR PROPHETS

Devotional - The Reluctant Missionary
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Monday Sep 9, 2019
Devotional - The Reluctant Missionary

“The word of the Lord came to Jonah son of Amittai: ‘Go to the great city of Nineveh and preach against it, because its wickedness has come up before me.’” – Jonah 1:1-2

 

In an article entitled “Confessions of a Reluctant Missionary,” Barbara Pocius wrote:

“My husband, Michael, and I are regular people. So when our church put out the call for people to go to Peru for missions work, we were ready to drop an extra offering in the bucket and pray for the safety and success of the adventurous travelers.

But as we heard more about the trip, I became aware of a nagging in my head as well as a tugging in my heart.

I’m sure it’s not nice to call the sound of God’s voice nagging, but I wasn’t going to Peru. Other people go on missions trips. You know the kind: young, daring, outdoor-loving. But the nagging got worse.

One early morning, as the sun was coming up, I called out to God with the type of prayers He wasn’t used to hearing from me. This is a bit of how the conversation played out:

‘Heavenly Father, about this Peru trip . . . . You can’t possibly want me to go. I’m old. I’ve never been camping. I don’t like bugs. I don’t like roughing it. Maybe there’s something I should do here at home.’

 

The Lord’s reply seemed clear to Barbara: ‘Meet the need’.

 

Barbara continued to wrestle with God’s call until she and Michael surrendered to it. She went on the mission trip to Peru and they were blessed. She wrote: “I could almost hear His proud response: Well done! Gracias!”

 

The Lord promises to bless us if we follow His call. Today in prayer, thank the Lord that His calling is sure.

 

“Following Christ is not our initiative, merely our response, in obedience.” – Os Guinness

 

God’s Word: “Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and call out against it the message that I tell you.” – Jonah 3:2

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE MINOR PROPHETS

Devotional - Foolish Pride
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Sunday Sep 8, 2019
Devotional - Foolish Pride

“Though you soar like the eagle and make your nest among the stars, from there I will bring you down," declares the LORD. – Obadiah 1:4

 

In January 2011, then nineteen-year-old Rodney Knight Jr. broke into the home of Washington Post journalist Marc Fisher, stealing a coat, cash, and a laptop belonging to Fisher’s son. Knight was so proud of his little heist that he felt the need to do a little bragging. 

Knight fired up the laptop that belonged to Fisher’s son and then took a picture of himself wearing the jacket and flaunting the cash he had taken. Unbelievably, Knight then posted the photo on the Facebook page of Fisher’s son – which all of Fisher’s 400+ friends instantly saw.

It didn’t take long for police to track down Knight and arrest him. Kyle Roe, the DC police officer working the case, said, “I've seen a lot, but this is the most stupid criminal I've ever seen.”

 

Foolish pride will bring about our fall. Today in prayer, confess any sin of pride in your life and humble yourself before the Lord.

 

“A proud man is always looking down on things and people; and, of course, as long as you are looking down, you cannot see something that is above you.” – C.S. Lewis

 

God’s Word: “When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom.” – Proverbs 11:2

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE MINOR PROPHETS

Devotional - Woe To Complacency
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Thursday Sep 5, 2019
Devotional - Woe To Complacency

“Woe to you who are complacent in Zion, and to you who feel secure on Mount Samaria, you notable men of the foremost nation, to whom the people of Israel come!” – Amos 6:1

 

In October 2018, a married couple died while taking a “selfie” photograph in Yosemite National Park. Meenakshi Moorthy, 30, and her husband, Vishnu Viswanath, 29, were Indian expats living in California. 

She was a self-described "adrenaline junkie," and he took "wow-worthy photos" of the couple posing at the edge of cliffs and jumping from planes. Those pictures appeared on social media and a travel blog that attracted thousands of followers. 

The couple's Yosemite trip turned out to be their last. They set up their tripod near a ledge at a scenic overlook in the California park. Visitors saw the camera the next morning and alerted park rangers, who "used high-powered binoculars” to find their bodies about 800 feet below Taft Point. Taft Point is where visitors can walk to the edge of a vertigo-inducing granite ledge that offers spectacular views of the Yosemite Valley below. The couple had become complacent on the dangers of being on the ledge of a cliff.

 

We need to examine our lives and rid ourselves of any spiritual complacency. Today in prayer, ask the Lord that “Thy will be done, not my will” and follow Jesus in all that you do.

 

“I hate to see complacency prevail in our lives when it's so directly contrary to the teaching of Christ.” – Jimmy Carter

 

God’s Word: “For the waywardness of the simple will kill them, and the complacency of fools will destroy them” – Proverbs 1:32

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE MINOR PROPHETS

Devotional - Helping The Poor
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Wednesday Sep 4, 2019
Devotional - Helping The Poor

“This is what the LORD says: "For three sins of Israel, even for four, I will not turn back [my wrath]. They sell the righteous for silver, and the needy for a pair of sandals. They trample on the heads of the poor as upon the dust of the ground and deny justice to the oppressed. Father and son use the same girl and so profane my holy name.” – Amos 2:6-7

 

In the summer of 1946 when a pastor challenged a group of youth to give their lives to the foreign mission field, Rosemary Jensen felt compelled to step forward and answer the call. That one step began a seven-decade journey in God’s service, first as a missionary to Tanzania, then as the executive director of Bible Study Fellowship International, and most recently as the president of The Rafiki Foundation, Inc.

She began the Rafiki Foundation in 1985 with the desire to help Africans. "Rafiki" means friend in Swahili and depicts the purpose of the foundation -- to befriend orphans and widows in their distress (James 1:27). Rafiki’s work expanded from Tanzania into Ghana, Liberia, Nigeria, Zambia, Malawi, Uganda, Kenya, Rwanda, and Ethiopia. Rafiki ministers to the poor through Villages that provide living and educational facilities through Rafiki’s five programs: Bible Study, Education, Teacher Training, Orphan Care, and Widows.

Today they house more than 800 orphans and provide a Christian classical education to an additional 450 students from the surrounding areas.

 

The poor are always on the Lord’s heart. Today in prayer, thank the Lord that He has blessed you with many material blessings. Ask Jesus how you can give to those in need.

 

“The cry of the poor must either be heard by us, or it will ascend up against us into the ears of the Lord of Sabaoth.” – F.D. Maurice

 

God’s Word: “All they asked was that we should continue to remember the poor, the very thing I was eager to do.” – Galatians 2:10

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE MINOR PROPHETS

Devotional - God's Love
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Tuesday Sep 3, 2019
Devotional - God's Love

“Rend your heart and not your garments. Return to the LORD your God, for he is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in love, and he relents from sending calamity.” – Joel 2:13

 

Pastor Charles Spurgeon once told the story of the preacher who was walking in the countryside and stopped by a farmhouse for a drink of water. The old farmer who lived there went out to talk to the preacher. As they were talking the preacher noticed that the barn had a weather vane on it that was spinning around in the wind.

On the weather vane the words “GOD IS LOVE” were engraved.

The preacher said to the man, “I don’t think that is a very good way to talk about God’s love. Are you saying that God’s love is wishy washy and changes depending on the way the wind blows?”

“No, no” said the farmer. “That Weather Vane is saying, “No matter which way the wind blows, God is Love.”

 

The love of God can find us in any situation into glory to God. Today in prayer, praise the Lord for His love and rejoice that Jesus is compassionate towards you.

 

"The dying Jesus is the evidence of God's anger toward sin; but the living Jesus is the proof of God's love and forgiveness." - Lorenz Eifert

 

God’s Word: “"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. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.” – John 3:16-17

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE MINOR PROPHETS

Devotional - Repent Of Your Sins
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Monday Sep 2, 2019
Devotional - Repent Of Your Sins

“Return, O Israel, to the LORD your God. Your sins have been your downfall! Take words with you and return to the LORD. Say to him: ‘Forgive all our sins and receive us graciously, that we may offer the fruit of our lips.’” – Hosea 14:1-2

 

Cameron Clark professed faith in Christ as a boy, but in high school, he began being drawn to new age philosophies. “I would have still said that I was a Christian, but I didn't think drinking or smoking pot was wrong. I thought that was just fun. I just looked for, well, maybe there's like a spiritual way to justify the life choices that I was making: crystals or magic or whatever, was fine.”

When Cameron went off to college, his interest in New Age grew. “It felt like I was taking control and like could have some kind of control over what was happening in my life. It's cleverly worded as ‘healing,’ or "evolving." The New Age told me that Jesus was an ascended master; He was just a human who realized He was God. Beginning to believe them, you run up against what you were taught, or what you learned when you were younger.”

About that same time, Cameron read an article--ironically in a New Age magazine--that made him question his new beliefs. “Jesus was in there with His words from Matthew 5:44 and Luke 6:28, ‘Love your enemies, bless those who curse you, and pray for those who persecute you.’ And I thought, "Okay, Jesus, can you help me do these things?”

Through a mutual friend, Cameron met Pastor Chad Osborne and his wife Hunter, a former Wiccan who had turned to Christ, for dinner.

That night Cameron bowed his knees, repented, and gave his life to Jesus.

 

The Lord not only wants us to repent and turn away from our sins. Today in prayer, confess any sin and your life and take the needed steps of repentance.

 

“A Christian is not one who never goes wrong, but one who is enabled to repent and begin over again after each stumble—because of the inner working of Christ.” – C.S. Lewis

 

God’s Word: “From that time on Jesus began to preach, ‘Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is near.’” – Matthew 4:17

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE MINOR PROPHETS

Devotional - Thirst For Righteousness
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Sunday Sep 1, 2019
Devotional - Thirst For Righteousness

“Sow for yourselves righteousness, reap the fruit of unfailing love, and break up your unplowed ground; for it is time to seek the LORD, until he comes and showers righteousness on you.” – Hosea 10:12

 

Years ago, when sailing ships traveled on the Atlantic Ocean near the equator, they ran into problems because the winds would die down. Often the ships who had never been in an area off of South America would cry out in distress because they not only were still in the water, but they also ran out of fresh water.

Ships familiar with the area would respond “Dip it up; you are in the mouth of the Amazon River.”

You see, the Amazon River is the largest freshwater river in the world. Its fresh waters reach some 200 miles out into the Atlantic Ocean. Often men would perish of thirst, ignorant that the boundless, fresh water they desired was right below them.

 

Just as our body thirsts for water to keep it healthy, our soul thirsts for God’s righteousness. Today in prayer, desire Christ in all you do and thirst for His righteousness.

 

"My only hope is that I shall be clothed with the righteousness of Jesus Christ." - M. Lloyd-Jones

 

God’s Word: “Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place” – Ephesians 6:14

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail   

DEVOTIONS IN THE MINOR PROPHETS

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