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Daily Devotionals
by Peter Kennedy
Series: Devotion in Matthew
Devotional - Pray For Those Who Are Persecuted
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Thursday Dec 9, 2010
Devotional - Pray For Those Who Are Persecuted

“All men will hate you because of me, but he who stands firm to the end will be saved. When you are persecuted in one place, flee to another. I tell you the truth, you will not finish going through the cities of Israel before the Son of Man comes.” – Matthew 10:22-23

 

Said Musa is a 45-year old Christian in Afghanistan. He was jailed for his faith and wrote a handwritten note that was smuggled out of prison. Here is the closing "Nobody could accept my defender (defense attorney) before the court. If I say I am a Christian man he immediately spat on me and abuse me and mock me! I am alone between 400 handlers of terrible values in the jail like a sheep. Please, please, for the sake of Lord Jesus Christ help me. Please send a person who should supervise my document and my file, what I said in it. My prosecutor has told something wrong to the judge because he asked [for] money but I refused his request. Please, please you should transfer me from this jail to a jail that supervises the believers. I also agree with died on cross of my pride. I also agree with the sacrifice [of] my life in public, I will tell the faith in Lord Jesus Christ son of God and other believers will take courage and be strong in their faith. Hundred percent I am stable to my word. I have family of seven - one wife, three daughters and three sons. My big son [is] about eight years old. One of my daughters can't speak, she has some mental problems. "This is a request from me to all over the world, people please help me. I could not have any person to help. For [the] sake [of] Lord Jesus Christ please pray and immediately help me and rescue me from this jail. Otherwise, they will kill me, because I know they're very very very cruel and hard hearted! Your destitute brother in the world.”

 

Many Christians in today’s world are being persecuted. Today in prayer, pray for Said and others who face persecution daily.

 

“Persecution for righteousness’ sake is what every child of God must expect.” – Charles Simeon

 

God’s Word: “All men will hate you because of me, but he who stands firm to the end will be saved.” – Mark 13:13

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2010, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN MATTHEW

Devotional - Pray For Workers
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Tuesday Dec 7, 2010
Devotional - Pray For Workers

“Then he said to his disciples, ‘The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.’” – Matthew 9:37-38

 

In 1993, Fouad Masri, an ordained minister from Lebanon, founded Arab International Ministry, now called the Crescent Project. Its goal is to nurture transformational relationships between Christians and Muslims and overcome misconceptions about Islam and Christianity. "Our job is not to make the Muslim a Christian," Fouad often reminds his audience. "Our job is to show them the love of Christ." He has trained nearly 11,000 North American Christians to sensitively and purposefully share their faith with Muslims. “The situation today is that Muslims live in American and have never met an authentic Christian. They've never seen a page of the New Testament," said Fouad. But that is changing, Fouad reminds us “In the last 15 years, more Muslims have become followers of Jesus than in the previous 1,400 years. And the number one reason is that they met an authentic Christian."

 

Everyone needs to know the love of Jesus Christ. Today in prayer, pray to the Lord that He will raise up more workers to share His Gospel and ask how you can help.

 

“Every heart with Christ is a missionary, and every heart without Christ is a mission field.” – Dick Hillis

 

God’s Word: “He told them, "The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.” – Luke 10:2

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2010, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN MATTHEW

Devotional - Put It In God's Hands
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Monday Dec 6, 2010
Devotional - Put It In God's Hands

“When Jesus heard this, he was astonished and said to those following him, "I tell you the truth, I have not found anyone in Israel with such great faith.” – Matthew 8:10

 

Wilfred Grenfell was born in Parkgate, Wirral, England in 1865. He studied medicine at the London Hospital Medical College. He became a missionary with The Royal National Mission to Deep Sea Fishermen. In 1892, they sent Grenfell to Newfoundland to improve the plight of coastal inhabitants and fishermen. He began a mission at Indian Harbour after recruiting two nurses and two doctors for a new hospital. The mission expanded greatly from its initial mandate to one of developing schools, an orphanage, cooperatives, and other projects. Grenfell began to minister to the aboriginal peoples and settlers along the coasts of Labrador. While in the frontier, Grenfell once found himself adrift on an ice flow, headed out to sea. He mercifully killed his dogs, made a coat out of their hides, put up a distress flag, and lay down and slept. Later he said, "There was nothing to fear. I had done all I could, the rest lay in God's hands."

 

We need to do all that we can, but in the end we need to rest in faith that the Lord is in control. Today in prayer, ask Jesus to give you faith in all that you do and to rest in Him.

 

“Faith is seeing the invisible, but not the nonexistent.” – A.W. Tozer

 

God’s Word: “Then Jesus answered, "Woman, you have great faith! Your request is granted." And her daughter was healed from that very hour.” – Matthew 15:28

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2010, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN MATTHEW

Devotional - The Lord Answers Prayer
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Monday Dec 6, 2010
Devotional - The Lord Answers Prayer

“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened.” – Matthew 7:6-7

 

During a “Focus on the Family” radio show, the host asked callers to share answered prayer. The following is Sandy Tivits testimony: “Hi, I’m Sandy Tivits from Worster, Ohio and in the fall of 1994, I was reading Dr. Dobson’s book, "When God doesn’t Make Sense" when I was diagnosed with a brain tumor. I was a single parent with two teenage sons and worked as a registered nurse at a job with no paid sick leave. Christians from many denominations started prayer chains and rallied around us. The surgery lasted 14-1/2 hours with my neuro-surgeon having no partner to assist him. My family was shocked with the news that I might not make it through the night and my dear friend Dianne gathered my small family in her arms in that waiting room and said "We’re going to pray right now." God knew all along that I was to be used as His vessel as He cradled me in His loving arms. He did answer those prayers. I was out of the hospital in eleven days and back to work in three months. He also saw fit to meet all of our financial needs during my recovery. My doctor tells me I’m a miracle; that I’ve been given a second chance in life.”

 

Jesus does answer our prayers! Today in prayer, bring before Him your needs, worries and cares and be confident that He will answer them.

 

“The whole canon of Bible teaching is to illustrate the great truth that God hears and answers prayer.” – E.M. Bounds

 

God’s Word: “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.” – Mark 11:24

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2010, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN MATTHEW

Devotional - Do Not Worry
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Sunday Dec 5, 2010
Devotional - Do Not Worry

“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes?” – Matthew 6:25

 

Colin Powell is a retired four-star general who has served as National Security Advisor, as Commander of the U.S. Army Forces Command, and as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. He was the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff during the first Gulf War. He was also Secretary of State under President George W. Bush from 2001-2005. In his autobiography, “My American Journey”, he wrote “Colin Powell’s 13 Rules of Life.” Number 12 on his list is “Don’t take counsel of your fears or naysayers.” But Powell may have violated his own rule in February 2003. America was on the verge of a war with Iraq, when he was reminded that, notwithstanding the stress, President George W. Bush was in bed by ten o'clock every night and slept like a baby. "I sleep like a baby, too," Powell replied. "Every two hours I wake up screaming!"

 

During our most stressful times, Jesus Christ is near to give us peace. Today in prayer, give Christ your anxieties and rest in His perfect peace.

 

“Stop thinking about your difficulties, whatever they are, and start thinking about God instead.” – Emmett Fox

 

God’s Word: “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” – Matthew 6:34

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2010, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN MATTHEW

Devotional - Be Reconciled
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Thursday Dec 2, 2010
Devotional - Be Reconciled

“"Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to your brother; then come and offer your gift.” – Matthew 5:23-24

 

In the 1880’s, Canada’s federal government fully embraced the residential school model for Aboriginal education. Up until 1970, some 80,000 Native Canadians were pulled from their homes and forced to learn at 139 residential schools. It tore apart families and created a rift between the Indian population and the Canadian government. In 1996, the last school finally closed its doors. But it was not until June 2008 that Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper formally apologized and asked for forgiveness for the federal government's catastrophic residential schools policy. Then, Native leader and former Member of Parliament Elijah Harper and Pastor David Mainse went down to the Speaker's Chair in the House of Commons. "We knelt down at the chair and prayed together," Harper said at the time, "and I expressed my forgiveness in my prayer." But old wounds do not easily heal. Only in 2010 has reconciliation begun to take hold. National Indigenous Anglican bishop Mark MacDonald said: "I think there's a strong and growing sense that we've now entered into a new era, a God-given time of recovery, release, reconciliation. A word that I hear often is 'restoration.' That's what I feel in the air -- that excitement that God is leading us into a new day. And Christian indigenous people are so much at the heart and the spirit of that."

 

Saying “I’m sorry” is the first step on the road of reconciliation. Today in prayer, confess any sin to the Lord, forgive any wrongs that others have done to you, and seek to have restored relationships that are centered on Jesus Christ.

 

“The number one problem in our world is alienation, rich versus poor, black versus white, labor versus management, conservative versus liberal, East versus West . . . But Christ came to bring about reconciliation and peace.” – Billy Graham

 

God’s Word: “that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men's sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation.” – 2 Corinthians 5:19

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2010, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN MATTHEW

Devotional - Resist Temptation
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Wednesday Dec 1, 2010
Devotional - Resist Temptation

“Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the desert to be tempted by the devil.” – Matthew 4:1

 

Christians Against Poverty is a British organization urging people not to give into the temptation of a loan or overusing their credit cards to cover the cost of their Christmas celebrations. The debt counseling charity says it is not out to kill the festive season but that it wants people to have a clear spending strategy to see them safely into the New Year. In November 2010, the charity’s Chief Executive Matt Barlow said: “These are difficult times for a lot of us and the temptation is to say 'at least we’ll have a great Christmas' and use that as an excuse to spend what we haven’t got.” “If you’ve already caught yourself saying this, we want your alarm bells to be ringing loud and clear." “If we were ever going to get our spending under control at Christmas – it should be this year.” The charity said that around half of its clients with “out-of-control” debt had taken out a loan at some time to help cover the cost of Christmas. It warned that many of them went on to lose their homes, suffer mental health problems, contemplate suicide and find themselves unable to feed and clothe their children. “We’re not party poopers," Barlow said. "We just want people to enjoy Christmas and not be anxious about whether they will be able to pay it all back.”

 

We each face temptations, but only Jesus can truly satisfy us. Today in prayer, pray that the Lord would lead you away from all temptation so that you may walk with Him.

 

“In the greatest temptations, a single look to Christ, and the bare pronouncing of his name, suffices to overcome with wicked one, so it be done with confidence and calmness of spirit.” – John Wesley

 

God’s Word: “And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.” – Matthew 6:13

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2010, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN MATTHEW

Devotional - The Promised Son
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Tuesday Nov 30, 2010
Devotional - The Promised Son

“Thus there were fourteen generations in all from Abraham to David, fourteen from David to the exile to Babylon, and fourteen from the exile to the Christ.” – Matthew 1:17

 

One of the favorite subjects of those who trace ancestry is Mrs. Alice Freeman Thompson Parke. She was born around 1595 in the area of Preston Capes, Northamptonshire, England. She was a descendant of Ethelred II “the Unready,” King of England who died in 1016. After her first husband, John Thompson, died in 1627, Alice immigrated to New England with her children. She eventually settled in Stonington, Connecticut. More than 32 generations, both preceding and following Alice, have been traced. Today her descendants number in the millions, more than any other woman in American history. Some of the famous American families that can trace their roots to Alice are the Firestones, Fords, Rockefellers, Tiffanys, and President Warren G. Harding. In Great Britain, Princess Diana and her sons Prince William and Prince Harry are descendants of Alice.

 

Though some people have an interesting family tree, only Jesus is the son of Abraham and the son of David. Jesus Christ is the Promised Son. Today in prayer, praise the Lord that He became a man, just as our Heavenly Father promised.

 

“The Son of God became a man to enable men to become the sons of God.” – C.S. Lewis

 

God’s Word: “Now Jesus himself was about thirty years old when he began his ministry. He was the son, so it was thought, of Joseph, the son of Heli … the son of Enosh, the son of Seth, the son of Adam, the son of God.” – Luke 3:23, 38

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2010, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN MATTHEW

 

Devotional - The Sin of Ingratitude
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Sunday Jan 3, 2010
Devotional - The Sin of 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

 

On August 25, 1944, the Allied armies liberated Paris from German occupation. To make it clear that Paris had been liberated through the strength of Allied arms, Allied Commander General Eisenhower planned to march the 28th Infantry Division through Paris as a sign of unity. In the division were leaders of the American and French Armies, but British General Montgomery declined to participate saying he was too busy to come. A few days later, French General de Gaulle awarded the Grande Croix of the Legion d’Honneur to Montgomery. Wildly excited Frenchmen bent on greeting their new hero promptly swarmed the British Embassy. At last Montgomery, mustering his best French, appeared and declared: "Merci. Et maintenant, allez-vous en." The crowd then dispersed. Later, having heard complaints that he had been ungracious, Monty sought counsel from A. P. Herbert: "'Merci. Et maintenant, allez-vous en.Allez-vous en' means 'Thank-you. And now, go away,' doesn't it?" he asked. "Yes, sir," Herbert replied. "Well," said Monty, "that's what I wanted, and that's what they did."

 

The Lord hates the sin of ingratitude. Today in prayer, confess any sin of ingratitude and be thankful with all that He has given you.

 

"The man who has forgotten to be thankful, has fallen asleep in life." – Robert Louis Stephenson

 

God’s Word: “People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good” 2 Timothy 3:2-3

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2010, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN ROMANS

Devotional - Share The Gospel
Posted by Peter Kennedy on Friday Jan 1, 2010
Devotional - Share The Gospel

"I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile." - Romans 1:16

 

In July 2009, Gospel for Asia-supported film team members Bhanu Singh and Mareechi Malik were showing a Christian Film in a remote village in India. About an hour into the film, several anti-Christian extremists wandered into the meeting area where about 200 villagers were paying close attention to what was happening on the movie screen. The agitators became angry when they saw how interested the villagers were in the missionaries’ film, so they decided to damage the team’s equipment. They overturned the team’s generator, completely destroying it. The extremists then began to beat Bhanu and Mareechi for trying to share the Gospel. Villagers saw what was happening and rushed to defend the two men. They later escorted the missionaries safely home. "Persecution will happen, and people will get hurt” said Daniel Punos of Gospel for Asia. “But at the same time, the people who do the persecution are often the very first ones who come to Christ.”

 

Do not be afraid of sharing your faith in Christ, even when you face possible persecution. Today in prayer, praise the Lord for His Gospel and seek to share it with others.

 

"The gospel is so simple that small children can understand it, and it is so profound that studies by the wisest theologians will never exhaust its riches." - Charles Hodge

 

God's Word: "I have written you quite boldly on some points, as if to remind you of them again, because of the grace God gave me to be a minister of Christ Jesus to the Gentiles with the priestly duty of proclaiming the gospel of God, so that the Gentiles might become an offering acceptable to God, sanctified by the Holy Spirit." - Romans 15:15-16

 

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2010, Devotional E-Mail

DEVOTIONS IN ROMANS

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