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Daily Devotionals
by Peter Kennedy
Series: DEVOTIONS IN Praise And Thanksgiving
Devotional - Great Is His Faithfulness
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Thursday Nov 28, 2019
Devotional - Great Is His Faithfulness

“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

 

Thomas O. Chisholm was born in Franklin, Kentucky on July 29, 1866 in a log cabin and became a teacher at age sixteen. Thomas became a Christian at age twenty-seven during a revival meeting. He served as a Methodist minister for just one-year before resigning due to poor health. Thomas wrote over 1,200 sacred poems over his lifetime and had more than his share of rejection letters from publishers.

At age 57-years old, he wrote the popular song was "Great Is Thy Faithfulness."

Later when asked how he wrote the hymn, he said there were no special circumstances surrounding it. He simply wrote about God’s faithfulness from studying the Bible and reflecting upon his own life.

 

The Lord has a great love for us. Today in prayer, let your heart’s song to the Lord be “Great Is Thy Faithfulness”.

 

“Great is Thy faithfulness Great is Thy faithfulness Morning by morning new mercies I see And all I have needed Thy hand hath provided Great is Thy faithfulness Lord unto me” – Thomas O. Chisholm

 

God’s Word: “But you, O Lord, are a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness.” – Psalm 86:15

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN PRAISE AND THANKSGIVING

Devotional - Give Thanks To The Lord
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Wednesday Nov 27, 2019
Devotional - Give Thanks To The Lord

“Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever.” – Psalm 107:1

 

Founded by freed American slaves in 1847, Liberia’s culture and government are influenced heavily by the United States. The country modeled its founding document after the U.S. constitution, and it practices some of the America’s most iconic cultural traditions, not the least of which is Thanksgiving. In Liberia, Thanksgiving typically involves a church service, after which harvest crops are auctioned off. Families then return home to feast, much like in America.

There are also some minor differences between Thanksgiving in Liberia and the United States. While the American holiday is held on the last Thursday in November, the Liberian Thanksgiving is held on the first Thursday in November. More importantly, perhaps are the culinary differences. Because turkeys and pumpkins are hard to come by in Liberia, roast chicken and mashed cassavas usually comprise a traditional Thanksgiving meal in the West African nation.

What do Liberians thank God for during the celebration? They are thankful for being freed from slavery and being granted a country in Africa, where they live as free people.

 

Everyone around the world has something they can thank the Lord for. Today in prayer, no matter where you live, give thanks to the Lord this day.

 

“The heart that gives thanks is a happy one, for we cannot feel thankful and unhappy at the same time.” – Douglas Wood

 

God’s Word: “Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever!” – Psalm 118:1

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN PRAISE AND THANKSGIVING

Devotional - How Sweet The Name
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Tuesday Nov 26, 2019
Devotional - How Sweet The Name

“Pleasing is the fragrance of your perfumes; your name is like perfume poured out. No wonder the young women love you!” – Song of Solomon 1:3

 

John Newton was a former captain of a slave ship who is best remembered for the hymn “Amazing Grace.” He composed over 200 of these hymns. One of the last ones he composed was “How Sweet the Name of Jesus Sounds. John was eighty years old, deaf and almost blind. However, he continued to preach. One of his points in one of his last sermons was “Jesus Christ is Precious.” As he was preaching, that poignant point struck him. John repeated it. “Yes, I said it twice,” said the aged preacher. This time with a shout, “and I will say it again! Jesus Christ is Precious!”

The congregation responded to John’s words and out of those words a hymn was born.

 

As Thanksgiving approaches, let your praise and thanks be centered on Jesus Christ. Today in prayer, praise Jesus Christ because He is Precious!

 

“Jesus! my Shepherd, Husband, Friend, O Prophet, Priest and King, My Lord, my Life, my Way, my End, Accept the praise I bring.” – John Newton

 

God’s Word: “Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” – Philippians 2:9-11

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN PRAISE AND THANKSGIVING

Devotional - Be Grateful To Our Strength And Shield
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Monday Nov 25, 2019
Devotional - Be Grateful To Our Strength And Shield

“The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and he helps me. My heart leaps for joy, and with my song I praise him.” – Psalm 28:7

 

In August 2019, Emilio Corrales, who also goes by “Mio”, was riding his bike on the walkway portion of a bridge near Wichita, Kansas. At the same time, Robert Baldridge, 55, was traveling northbound in a Peterbilt semi-truck on the bridge. 

Mio fell off his bike and into the northbound lane of the highway right in front of the semi. The semi struck both the bike and the 11-year-old boy before the driver stopped.

Mio was taken to Wesley Medical Center with several torn ligaments, a fractured skull and other cuts and bruises.

But one week after the accident, the young boy returned home, expected to make a full recovery. 

“I'm thankful to God because I didn't die,” Mio said. He’s also thankful for all the prayer and support he’s received. “They prayed and believed in me and I'm just thankful for that,” he said.

The Mio’s father, Oscar Corrales, said, “I want to thank God for everything he has done in my life but especially for what he has done in this past week for giving my son a Milio the heart of a lion.” He added that the experience has proven “God is good.”

 

The Lord is good and worthy of our praise. Today in prayer, give thanks to the Lord for all the miracles He has done in your life.

 

“Miracles point people to God. They let us know that God is still active in our world and intervening supernaturally in people's lives and making a difference.” – Lee Strobel

 

God’s Word: “But I have trusted in your steadfast love; my heart shall rejoice in your salvation.” – Psalm 13:5

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN PRAISE AND THANKSGIVING

Devotional - People Need The Lord
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Sunday Nov 24, 2019
Devotional - People Need The Lord

"But as for me, I am poor and needy; may the Lord think of me. You are my help and my deliverer; you are my God, do not delay.” – Psalm 40:17

 

When you think of contemporary Christian songwriters, you might think they are from Nashville, Tennessee or southern California. You probably would think of dozens – maybe hundreds – of places before you would think of North or South Dakota. But Greg Nelson from South Dakota got together with Phil McHugh, another Midwest boy, to write one of the most popular Christian songs “People Need The Lord.”

One day, after trying to come up with a new song with little success, the two men went to eat lunch at a nearby restaurant. The waitress was pleasant enough, but she seemed sad and lonely. They commented to each other about it and began looking around the restaurant. They began noticing how many others also seemed to be empty, even fearful.

They finished their meal, and, as they went out to their car, they said, “You know, people need the Lord”. They agreed that a song had to be written around those words. That afternoon, they wrote the song.

 

As Thanksgiving approaches, remember many people do not know the Lord. Today in prayer, give thanks that you know Jesus. Pray for those who still do not know Him.

 

“People need the Lord, people need the Lord At the end of broken dreams, He's the open door People need the Lord, people need the Lord When will we realize people need the Lord?” – Greg Nelson and Phil McHugh

 

God’s Word: “The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners” – Isaiah 61:1

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2018, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN PRAISE AND THANKSGIVING

Devotional - Be A Thankful Person
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Thursday Nov 21, 2019
Devotional - Be A Thankful Person

“Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” – 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

 

Renee Jain is a certified life coach. She has found that being a thankful person can help change one’s physical and psychological health. “When my coaching clients ask me why gratitude exercises work, I let them know that humans have something called a negativity bias where ‘bad stuff’ in our life outweighs the good by a measure of about 3:1,” she said.

“Gratitude helps us counteract the negativity bias by focusing our attention on the ‘good stuff’. A little focus can go a long way to improving one's psychological, social, and physical health.”

“One of the most well-known practices uncovered from this research is known as the Three Blessings exercise,” said Jain. “Each night before going to bed you write down three good things (ordinary or extraordinary) that happened to you during the day. Studies reveal those who continue this exercise for one week straight can increase their happiness and decrease depressive symptoms for up to a six-month period.”

 

The Lord has created us so we may be grateful people. Today in prayer, give thanks to the Lord for His goodness towards you.

 

"We would worry less if we praised more. Thanksgiving is the enemy of discontent and dissatisfaction." - H.A. Ironside

 

God’s Word: “always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.” – Ephesians 5:20

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN PRAISE AND THANKSGIVING

Devotional - Songs Of Praise The Angels Sang
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Wednesday Nov 20, 2019
Devotional - Songs Of Praise The Angels Sang

“Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, ‘Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.’” – Luke 2:13-14

 

James Montgomery was the son of a Moravian minister in Scotland. His parents became missionaries to the West Indies. They both died when James was a teenager.

By the age of twenty-three, he was a newspaper editor. During the next two years he was imprisoned twice, first for reprinting therein a song in commemoration of "The Fall of the Bastille," and the second for giving an account of a riot in Sheffield.

It was during his time in prison that James composed several different poems.

One of them became the hymn entitled: “Songs of Praise the Angels Sang.” He wrote it in his forties and it shows his deep faith in God.

Later in life, he was recognized for his life’s work and was honored with a public funeral.

 

All of creation praises Jesus. Today in prayer, let your praise be like when the angels sang.

 

“Hymns of glory, songs of praise, Father, unto thee we raise, Jesu, glory unto thee, with the Spirit, ever be.” – James Montgomery

 

God’s Word: “Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!” – Luke 19:38

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN PRAISE AND THANKSGIVING

Devotional - Praise Him For His Protection
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Tuesday Nov 19, 2019
Devotional - Praise Him For His Protection

“He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.” – Psalm 91:4

 

On September 2, 2019, terrorists from an offshoot of the Pakistani Taliban attacked a Christian community in Pakistan’s northwestern city of Peshawar. Thanks to the actions of a church security guard and local security forces, a massacre of Christians was averted. The terrorists were heavily armed and wore suicide vests when they attacked the Christian neighborhood of 30 families.

There were four suicide bombers that infiltrated the community. They stormed the church at 6 am in an attempt to assassinate all the Christian worshippers.

Because of the early hour, only the security guard was present, but he was able to hold off the attackers and call Pakistani security agencies until his ammunition ran out and the terrorists killed him.

The church is praising God and the security guard for protecting them.

 

The Lord is our Protector. Today in prayer, praise the Lord for protecting you from harm.

 

“God, I thank You for all You have given me. I pray for Your continued blessings, provision, and protection.” – Stormie Omartian

 

God’s Word: “Have mercy on me, my God, have mercy on me, for in you I take refuge. I will take refuge in the shadow of your wings until the disaster has passed.” – Psalm 57:1

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN PRAISE AND THANKSGIVING

Devotional - Rise Up and Praise Him!
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Monday Nov 18, 2019
Devotional - Rise Up and Praise Him!

“Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong.” – 1 Corinthians 16:13

 

William P. Merrill was a Presbyterian pastor who served several churches during his lifetime—most notably Brick Presbyterian Church in New York City, where he served from 1911 until his retirement in 1938.

Pastor Merrill wrote several hymns, which include “Rise Up, O Men of God.” He wrote it not to discriminate against women, but rather to challenge men. At the time, many men were passive in their church involvement. Pastor Merrill was confronted to write a hymn that challenged men in their walk with Jesus. While on his way home aboard a Lake Michigan steamer, he wrote the words that became the lyrics for “Rise Up, O Men of God.” 

The hymn is full of exclamation points and military sounding commands. The Christian message still rings true today. Both men and women are to be passionate followers, not passive observers, of Jesus Christ.

 

We all need to rise up and give Jesus our praise. Today in prayer, praise the Lord that He is King of kings and worthy of our praise.

 

“Rise up, O men of God! Have done with lesser things; Give heart and soul and mind and strength To serve the King of kings.” – William Merrill

 

God’s Word: “Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might.” – Ephesians 6:10

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2018, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN PRAISE AND THANKSGIVING

Devotional - Total Praise
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Sunday Nov 17, 2019
Devotional - Total Praise

“All the earth bows down to you; they sing praise to you, they sing the praises of your name.” – Psalm 66:4

 

“The Color Purple” is a musical based on the 1982 novel of the same name. The show follows the journey of Celie, an African-American woman in the American South from the early to mid-20th century. The original Broadway production ran from 2005 to 2008, earning eleven Tony Award nominations in 2006. An enthusiastically acclaimed Broadway revival opened in late 2015 and ran through early 2017, winning two 2016 Tony Awards—including Best Revival of a Musical.

On the last performance in 2017, the cast ended off-script. Before the curtain closed one final time the entire cast came out on stage to address the audience. Actress Patrice Covington then proceeded to give a farewell speech on behalf of everyone.

The cast then sang the popular Richard Smallwood song, "Total Praise."

The cast passionately worshipped God and many had their hands lifted in praise while others were unashamedly being touched by the words of the song.

 

Let every day be a glorious song to the Lord. Today in prayer, sing the praises of Jesus’ name.

 

Because God is God I can praise His wonderful name. Today in prayer, reflect on the greatness of God and praise Him!

 

“Lord, I will lift mine eyes to the hills,

Knowing my help is coming from You.

Your peace, You give me in time of the storm.

You are the source of my strength.

You are the strength of my life.

I lift my hands in total praise to you.

Amen, Amen. Amen, Amen. Amen, Amen. Amen, Amen!” – Richard Smallwood  

 

God’s Word: “Sing the glory of his name; make his praise glorious.” – Psalm 66:2

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN PRAISE AND THANKSGIVING

Devotional - Praise Naturally
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Thursday Nov 14, 2019
Devotional - Praise Naturally

“Lord, you are my God; I will exalt you and praise your name, for in perfect faithfulness you have done wonderful things, things planned long ago.” – Isaiah 25:1

 

In an article entitled: “Here's Why Praising God Should Come Naturally for Us”, written after Christmas 2017, author Rachael Keefe wrote the following:

“No matter what is happening in the world, God is still God. God created the world. God so loves the world. God became flesh and lived among us. God reveals the way of Love. If the world is overwhelmed with hatred and poverty and fear, it is not God's doing. God is still God in the midst of the mess we have created. God was God on that first Christmas when Jesus took his first breath. God was God on that first Good Friday when Jesus took his last breath. God was God on that first Easter morning when Christ emerged from death. God is God, even now, when we live in fear, when we struggle for health and wholeness, when Pharaoh and Babylon are on the rise again, when we forget that nothing can extinguish Love. God is still God. God waits for us to recognize God's presence here and now. God is waiting for us to sing praises to God even when we don't feel like it.

There is plenty to sing about, really. God loves humanity collectively and individually, even when we don't seek out God's ways, even when our sin has lasting effects. Praising God for the goodness of creation should come naturally to our lips. Praising God for God's amazing love for humanity should be as natural as breathing. We have forgotten to step back and look beyond our own lives, beyond this moment in time, beyond the remnants of this Christmas. We have forgotten to listen to the stories of those who have gone before us. We have forgotten to come before God in awe and gratitude for the gift of life and Love. Perhaps we have forgotten how truly loved we are. If we remember, we can change the world. If we remember, we will become known for our songs of praise.”

 

Because God is God I can praise His wonderful name. Today in prayer, reflect on the greatness of God and praise Him!

 

“Praise is a declaration, a victory cry, proclaiming faith to stand firm in the place God has given you. Praise is a proclamation that the enemy's intent to plunder you will not rock you. Praise declares that you will not be moved by the enemy's attempt to snatch you away.” – Darlene Zschech

 

God’s Word: “You are my God, and I will praise you; you are my God, and I will exalt you.” – Psalm 118:28

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN PRAISE AND THANKSGIVING

Devotional - More Love
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Wednesday Nov 13, 2019
Devotional - More Love

“We love because he first loved us.” – 1 John 4:19

 

Elizabeth Payson Prentiss was born in Portland, Maine, on October 26, 1818. She was known throughout her life as a saintly woman, who continually practiced the presence of Christ.

On one occasion she wrote:

“To love Christ more is the deepest need, the constant cry of my soul … out in the woods, and on my bed, and out driving, when I am happy and busy, and when I am sad and idle, the whisper keeps going up for more love, more love, more love!”

While ministering to a church in New York City during the 1850s, the Prentiss’ lost a child, and then a short time later their youngest child also died. For weeks, Elizabeth was inconsolable, and in her diary, she wrote, “Empty hands, a worn-out, exhausted body, and unutterable longings to flee from a world that has so many sharp experiences.”

During this period of grief, Elizabeth began meditating upon the story of Jacob in the Old Testament, and how God met him in a very special way during his moments of sorrow and deepest need. She prayed earnestly that she too might have a similar experience. She also thought about Sarah Adams’ hymn text, “Nearer, My God, to Thee”. While she thus meditated and prayed, she began writing her own lines in almost the same metrical pattern that Sarah Adams had used in her writing. Elizabeth completed all four stanzas of “More Love to Thee” that same evening; but she never showed the poem to anyone, not even her husband, for the next thirteen years. It was eventually published in 1869 and later made into a hymn.

 

As we grow older, let us grow more in love with Jesus Christ. Today in prayer, may your heart’s desire to have more love for Jesus.

 

“More love to thee, O Christ, more love to thee! Hear thou the prayer I make on bended knee. This is my earnest plea: More love, O Christ, to thee.” – Elizabeth Payson Prentiss

 

God’s Word: “This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.” – 1 John 4:10

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN PRAISE AND THANKSGIVING

Devotional - Praise God No Matter What
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Tuesday Nov 12, 2019
Devotional - Praise God No Matter What

“Is anyone among you in trouble? Let them pray. Is anyone happy? Let them sing songs of praise.” – James 5:13

 

On November 5, 2017, Devin Patrick Kelley walked into the First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs, Texas and fatally shot 26 people and wounded 20 others. The attack was the deadliest mass shooting in Texas and the fifth deadliest mass shooting in the United States.

Julie Workman was in church that day. She saw the gunman shoot her son. He was paralyzed but survived the attack.

Julie also was shot. She was sitting in the second pew and had just beaten breast cancer. Her recent reconstruction surgery deflected the bullet that entered her chest and saved her life.

“I think God used that as a protection for me,” she said.

Julie wants to remember the event and hopes her story can help prevent others from experiencing the same pain.

First Baptist held a remembrance event on the anniversary of the tragedy.  

“It’s a day of thanksgiving. It’s a day of praising God for His grace,” she said.

 

Even in the worst of times, we can still praise the Lord. Today in prayer, praise Jesus for His grace towards you.

 

“We can always find a reason to praise. Situations change for better and for worse, but God's worth never changes.” – Matt Redman

 

God’s Word: “Having received this order, he put them into the inner prison and fastened their feet in the stocks. About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them,” – Acts 16:24-25

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN PRAISE AND THANKSGIVING

Devotional - Great God Of Wonders
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Monday Nov 11, 2019
Devotional - Great God Of Wonders

“O Lord, open thou my lips, and my mouth shall show forth thy praise. For thou hast no delight in sacrifice; were I to give a burnt offering, thou wouldst not be pleased. The sacrifice acceptable to God is a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.” – Psalm 51:15-17

 

Samuel Davies was the first dissenting minister; he was a Presbyterian, to be licensed to preach the Gospel in the colony of Virginia. He preached to several congregations in Hanover County despite suffering from tuberculosis, and he did much to lay the foundation for religious toleration in Virginia. The American patriot Patrick Henry claimed that he learned his oratorical skills listening to Davies preach as a boy.

Samuel eventually was elected as the fourth President of the College of New Jersey, which became Princeton University, in 1759. He succeeded Jonathan Edwards and like Edwards, his time there was shortened by his death in 1761 at the age of thirty-seven.

Davies wrote over 100 hymns including “Great God of Wonders”.  In the hymn, he asks the recurring questions of “Who is a pard’ning God like thee? Or who has grace so rich and free?” This is in the heart of every Christian who has experienced the pardoning grace of our holy God and praises Him.

 

Our God is a Great God of Wonders. Today in prayer, praise Jesus for pardoning your sins.

 

“O may this strange, this matchless grace, This Godlike miracle of love, Fill the whole earth with grateful praise, And all th’angelic choirs above, And all th’angelic choirs above. Who is a pardoning God like Thee? Or who has grace so rich and free? Or who has grace so rich and free?” – Samuel

 

God’s Word: “And let them offer sacrifices of thanksgiving, and tell of his deeds in songs of joy!” – Psalm 107:22

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN PRAISE AND THANKSGIVING

Devotional - Thank Him For Peace
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Sunday Nov 10, 2019
Devotional - Thank Him For Peace

“Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.” – Colossians 3:15

 

Kevin Sorbo is an American actor who best known for the roles of Professor Radisson in “God’s Not Dead”, Hercules in “Hercules: The Legendary Journeys”, Captain Dylan Hunt in “Andromeda”, and Kull in “Kull the Conqueror”. At 13, he went to a Billy Graham Crusade and gave his life to Jesus Christ.

It took a series of strokes while filming Hercules in 1997 for Kevin to fully rest in Jesus.

“My true strength comes from God and certainly from my family right after that,” said Kevin. They’re the most important things in my life.”

He said: “I think people need to start realizing that God is a pretty important element to happiness in your life and to stability and to being calm in your life and not being so impatient and angry.”

 

When we abide in Christ, we have a peace and calm in our lives. Today in prayer, give thanks to the Lord for the peace He brings to you.

 

“Christ alone can bring lasting peace - peace with God - peace among men and nations - and peace within our hearts.” – Billy Graham

 

God’s Word: “You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you.” – Isaiah 26:3

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN PRAISE AND THANKSGIVING

Devotional - I Thank God For You
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Thursday Nov 7, 2019
Devotional - I Thank God For You

“We always thank God for all of you and continually mention you in our prayers.” – 1 Thessalonians 1:2

 

In 1989, at the height of South America’s drug wars, Kurt Muse was the most-wanted man in Panama. He is a U.S. army veteran who was raised in Panama. Muse first rose to fame when he led a band of Panamanian patriots for two years in a plot to overthrow the oppressive narco-military dictator General Manuel Noriega. He used an underground opposition radio station dubbed “The Voice of Liberty”. He was captured by Noriega, was subjected to intense interrogation, paraded in front of the press, threatened, and ultimately placed in solitary confinement for nine months. Then on 20 December 1989, an American Special Operations Force freed Muse from his prison.

Kurt Muse is a grateful man. Each anniversary of his rescue Kurt calls each of his 23 rescuers to thank them and to update them on the life and family of the man they saved.

 

Let us be grateful to God and to others for all they have done for you. Today in prayer, praise the Lord for His love and give thanks to all the people who have helped you through your life.

 

“In ordinary life, we hardly realize that we receive a great deal more than we give, and that it is only with gratitude that life becomes rich.” – Dietrich Bonhoeffer

 

God’s Word: “I thank my God always when I remember you in my prayers,” – Philemon 1:4

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN PRAISE AND THANKSGIVING

Devotional - Abide In Jesus
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Wednesday Nov 6, 2019
Devotional - Abide In Jesus

“Remain in me, as I also 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

 

Henry Francis Lyte was an Anglican priest and vicar of All Saints Church in Brixham, England. He was also a published poet and accomplished hymn writer who also penned “Jesus, I My Cross Have Taken” and “Praise, My Soul, the King of Heaven.” For most of his life Lyte suffered from poor health, and he would regularly travel abroad for relief, as was the tradition in that day. He developed tuberculosis and, at the age of 54, came near to the end of his life in 1847. His daughter, Anna Maria Maxwell Hogg, recounts the story of how the hymn “Abide with Me” came out of that context.

“The summer was passing away, and the month of September (that month in which he was once more to quit his native land) arrived, and each day seemed to have a special value as being one day nearer his departure.

His family were surprised and almost alarmed at his announcing his intention of preaching once more to his people. His weakness and the possible danger attending the effort, were urged to prevent it, but in vain. “It was better”, as he used to say often playfully, when in comparative health, “to wear out than to rust out”. He felt that he should be enabled to fulfil his wish, and feared not for the result. His expectation was well founded. He did preach, and amid the breathless attention of his hearers, gave them a sermon on the Holy Communion. . . .

In the evening of the same day he placed in the hands of a near and dear relative the little hymn, ‘Abide with Me’, with an air of his own composing, adapted to the words.”

Henry Lyte went to be home with the Lord seven weeks later.

 

Nothing brings peace to a soul than abiding with Jesus. Today in prayer, give praise to the Lord and abide with Him.

 

“Abide with me; fast falls the eventide; The darkness deepens; Lord with me abide. When other helpers fail and comforts flee, Help of the helpless, O abide with me.” – Henry Lyte

 

God’s Word: “whoever says he abides in him ought to walk in the same way in which he walked.” – 1 John 2:6

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN PRAISE AND THANKSGIVING

Devotional - Praise Him For Delivering Us From Our Fears
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Tuesday Nov 5, 2019
Devotional - Praise Him For Delivering Us From Our Fears

“Glorify the Lord with me; let us exalt his name together. I sought the Lord, and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears.” – Psalm 34:3-4

 

The Camp Fire, a wildfire in 2018 in Northern California, burned more than 150,000 acres, destroyed nearly 14,000 structures and killed 86 people, 

Courtney Werblow was in tears when she returned to the Paradise, California property where her parent’s home once stood. But it wasn’t the ravaged property that had her crying. Rather, it was the sight of her beloved cat, Timber.

“You look so good,” she said, breaking into tears as Timber approached. “You made it! You made it! It's okay baby. We are right here. We are here for you!”

Timber, a female with beige coloring and a brown face is “special” Werblow said. Timber came into her life after she and her husband married and she was expecting their second child.

Timber was living with Werblow’s parents at the time the Camp Fire blazed through the Butte County area because her rental property did not allow cats.

“NEVER LOSE HOPE! One month today since the fire, we received an escort to my parents' property & my cat Timber was discovered!! She’s alive. Praise God!!” she wrote.

 

The Lord is good; He delivers us from our fears. Today in prayer, praise the Lord that He is our deliverer.

 

“Even if God never did another good thing in our lives, we could spend the rest of this life praising Him for what He has already done.” ― Dillon Burroughs

 

God’s Word: “Praise be to the Lord, to God our Savior, who daily bears our burdens. Our God is a God who saves; from the Sovereign Lord comes escape from death.” – Psalm 68:19-20

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN PRAISE AND THANKSGIVING

Devotional - Wherever He Leads
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Monday Nov 4, 2019
Devotional - Wherever He Leads

“Then he called the crowd to him along with his disciples and said: ‘Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.’” – Mark 8:34

 

It was 1936 and two friends serving together at a Sunday school conference in Alabama were at lunch, sharing what God was doing in their lives.

One, a missionary to Brazil home on furlough, told the other, a hymn writer leading the music for the conference, that a health issue would keep him from returning to the country he had grown to love. The news, received just days before, had broken his heart.

The hymn writer asked, “What will you do?” And through tears, the missionary, R.S. Jones, told the hymn writer, B.B. McKinney, “Wherever He leads, I’ll go.”

McKinney was so moved that he penned the classic hymn that afternoon and sang it that night after Jones had preached. Since then, this song has been sung at invitation times and crusades, revivals and worship services.

 

There is no better way to give praise to the Lord than to follow Him. Today in prayer, dedicate this day to Jesus and follow Him in all you do.

 

“‘Take up thy cross and follow Me,’

I heard my Master say;

‘I gave My life to ransom thee,

Surrender your all today.’

Wherever He leads I'll go,

Wherever He leads I'll go,

I'll follow my Christ who loves me so,

Wherever He leads I'll go.” – B.B. McKinney

 

God’s Word: “And whoever does not carry their cross and follow me cannot be my disciple.” – Luke 14:27

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN PRAISE AND THANKSGIVING

Devotional - Criticizing God
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Sunday Nov 3, 2019
Devotional - Criticizing God

“‘But who are you, a human being, to talk back to God? ‘Shall what is formed say to the one who formed it, ‘Why did you make me like this?’” - Romans 9:20

 

In August 2008, Nebraska Judge Marlon Polk presided over an unusual case: a lawsuit of state Senator Ernie Chambers vs. God.

Chambers cited the Almighty’s role in “fearsome floods… horrendous hurricanes, terrifying tornadoes… widespread death, destruction, and terrorization of millions upon millions of the Earth’s inhabitants.” The state senator, who’d served some 35 years, sought an injunction against all of these wrongdoings.

Judge Polk quickly dismissed the suit before it could truly get started. Polk threw out the case because the defendant (God) couldn’t be properly served, “because of his unlisted home address.” 

Chambers countered by saying that “The court itself acknowledges the existence of God. A consequence of that acknowledgment is a recognition of God’s omniscience. Since God knows everything, God has notice of this lawsuit.”

Nevertheless, Polk dismissed the suit and the matter came to an end.

 

The opposite of praise is criticism and blame, and we should never doubt God’s goodness towards us. Today in prayer, confess any sin of criticism and praise the Lord for He is good.

 

“The most insanely daring thing that any man can do, the most exceedingly foolish thing any man can do, the most desperately wicked thing that any man can do, is to reply against God, to enter into controversy with God, to criticize God, to condemn God. Yet that is what many people are doing.” - R.A. Torrey

 

God’s Word: “You turn things upside down, as if the potter were thought to be like the clay! Shall what is formed say to the one who formed it, ‘You did not make me’? Can the pot say to the potter, ‘You know nothing’?” - Isaiah 29:16

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN PRAISE AND THANKSGIVING

Devotional -Ingratitude
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Thursday Oct 31, 2019
Devotional -Ingratitude

"For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened." - Romans 1:21

 

The Italian historian and statesman Francesco Guicciardini is best known for his book “History of Italy” which covers the period from 1492 to 1532. He was a friend and critic of Niccolò Machiavelli, he is considered one of the major political writers of the Italian Renaissance. In 1516 he was appointed governor of the papal state Modena and in 1517 also of the state of Reggio. Until 1534 Guicciardini served the papacy almost continuously.

As governor, he had to face internal disorders as well as external dangers, Guicciardini showed outstanding administrative gifts. His severe and sometimes ruthless measures were effective in restoring order but also caused him unpopularity. 

Guicciardini wrote the following about ingratitude: “Even though many people prove to be ungrateful, do not let that stop you from benefiting others-for not only is beneficence in itself a noble and almost divine quality, it may also happen that while you practice it, you will encounter someone so grateful that he will make up for all the others' ingratitude.”

 

We need to be grateful for all that the Lord has given us. Today in prayer, confess any sin of ingratitude and be thankful to the Lord.

 

“Ingratitude is always a kind of weakness. I have never seen that clever men have been ungrateful.” – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

 

God's Word: "People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy" - 2 Timothy 3:2

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2019, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN PRAISE AND THANKSGIVING

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