"For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son...." John 3:16a
Is not the greatest gift love? John said we love Him because He first loved us. Jesus, Himself said, they will know you are mine because of your love for each other. The following was written by A. W. Tozer several years ago:
(A radiant Christian love. I want to see a restoration of a radiant Christian love so it will be impossible to find anyone who will speak unkindly or uncharitably about another or to another. This is carefully thought out and carefully prayed through. The devil would have a spasm. He would be so chagrined that he would sulk in his self-made hell for years. There should be a group of Christians with radiant love in this last worn-out dying period of the Christian dispensation, a people so loving that you could not get them to speak unkindly and you could not get them to speak uncharitably.)
I feel Tozer must have known several Christians who displayed such love; but he longed to see it again, and to see it wide spread in the church.
"Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. . ." 1 Corinthians 13:6–8a
It's such a privilege to
love! Unconditional love cost us nothing! It's value is
Do you ever tire of hearing bad news and have a deep longing for good news?
Nearly every day we are updated on some global crisis, national emergency, or
local catastrophe. Aging parents lose their vitality, friends decide to divorce,
and teens make wrong decisions. If we think only of those things, we are
overcome with a sense of hopelessness.
Titus 2:11 says, “For the grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to
all people”. Not some people, not select people, not lucky people–but to all
people. In the person of his only Son, Jesus Christ, God has come into our world
to be “with us.” That is good news! It means that when life is tough, God is
with us! When people disappoint, God is with us! When times are hard, God is
May His presence bless you today, and always keep in mind
that you are loved!!!
We are saved and placed into the family of God, by the Grace of God. Grace through faith in Jesus, and His finished work on
the cross, that can save the sinner, cleanse the Christian's heart, and keep the Christian, is what we are thankful for today, this day after Thanksgiving. Some today want to abolish the teaching, preaching, and singing of the blood of
Christ. Let's never forget to thank Him for His sacrifice.
GRACE to you, and peace" (Rom.1:7);
freely by His GRACE" (Rom.3:24);
"we have access by faith
into this GRACE wherein we stand" (Rom.5:2);
"the GRACE of
God, and gift by GRACE...is by one Man" (Rom.5:15);
abundance of GRACE and of the gift of righteousness" (Rom.5:17);
"where sin abounded, GRACE did much more abound...that
GRACE might reign"
"for ye are not under the law, but under GRACE" (Rom.6:14);
"not under the law, but under GRACE" (Rom.6:15);
"there is a remnant according to the election of GRACE" (Rom.11:5);
"if by GRACE, then it is no more of works; otherwise GRACE is no more
GRACE.... But if it be of works, then is it no more GRACE" (Rom.11:6);
"By the GRACE of God I am what I am; and His GRACE... was
not in vain, but I labored more abundantly than they all: yet not I, but the
GRACE of God which was with me" (ICor.15:10);
"that the abundant GRACE might through the thanksgiving of many redound to the glory of
"receive not the GRACE of God in vain"
"ye know the GRACE of our Lord Jesus Christ"
"God is able to make all GRACE abound toward
"the exceeding GRACE of God"
"My GRACE is sufficient for thee"
"I do not frustrate the GRACE of God"
"the praise of the glory of His GRACE"
"the forgiveness of sins, according to the
riches of His GRACE" (Eph.1:7);
"the exceeding riches of His GRACE"
"For by GRACE are ye saved, through faith"
"the dispensation of the GRACE of God... given
me to you-ward" (Eph.3:2);
"Let the Word of Christ dwell in you r
ichly...singing with GRACE in your hearts to the Lord" (Col.3:16);
"the GRACE of our Lord was exceeding abundant" (ITim.1:14);
"who hath saved us...according to His own purpose and
GRACE, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began" (IITim.1:9);
"Be strong in the GRACE that is in Christ Jesus"
"GRACE be with you all" (Tit.3:15).
May the God of all grace bless you today, and never forget that you are
There is a story of a farmer who received a visit from the local pastor. The pastor commented on what a beautiful and successful property the farmer and the Lord had produced. The farmer's response was: "You should have seen the place when it was only in the hands of the Lord, the weeds and brush were everywhere, and there were none of the crop fields or flowers beds, ands the buildings were in shambles.
Strange, is it not, that when men are successful, they generally credit themselves liberally for their success but when things go wrong they begin to blame others -- even God.
We do not have up-to-date information about two particular plots of ground in Moscow, but some years ago one of these was a beautiful garden, the other a patch of weeds. Above each there was a sign. Over the one: "This plot is cared for by the United Soviet Socialist Republic," over the other: "This plot is cared for by God"!
Evidently the atheistic Soviets who hatched this "bright idea" did not stop to think that only God could produce the beautiful flowers in the USSR plot. All their watering and cultivating would have been in vain except for the God they deny.
As to the other plot, they probably did not even know that even in Eden God put the garden in man's charge "to dress it and to keep it" (Gen. 2:15), and later, when man sinned, God said to Adam, "Cursed is the ground for thy sake" (Gen. 3:17). This is why the Soviets had to employ a gardener to control the weeds in even their garden! How wrong and foolish, then, for man ever to blame God for anything that goes wrong for him or causes him trouble!
And how right it is to praise God for every good gift, thank Him during this season, and all year long, for your salvation, and how He cherishes you. A garden is one of the most beautiful places to be and God chooses it to describe us. Amazing that He finds glory in us!!! His love for us and His approval of us is described in the Song of Solomon Chapter 4, when the Bridegroom, Jesus, is speaking of His Bride, you: "A garden enclosed is my sister, my spouse; a spring shut up, a fountain sealed. Thy plants are an orchard of pomegranates, with pleasant fruits; camphire, with spikenard, spikenard and saffron; calmaus and cinnamon, with all trees of frankincense; myrrh and aloes, with all the chief spices: a fountain of gardens a well of living waters, and streams from Lebanon." So the next time you are down on yourself, thinking you are worthless, and good-for-nothing, remember that the Lord knows much more than you do, and He loves you, and glories in you, beyond measure.
May He bless you real good this Monday morning while you partner with Him as a farmer or gardner partners with Him, and never forget that you are loved!!!
Almost every word, I guess, has an antonym and a synonym, and this is true in the descriptive words concerning our spiritual life as well. There is good and evil, righteousness and unrighteousness, holy
and unholy, faithfulness and doubting, and thanksgiving and complaining. As we approach the season we call "Thanksgiving", it may be helpful for us to also consider that antonym, "complaining", so we can put it off complete, with the Lords help.
"In everything give thanks, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you." I
The soul that gives thanks can find comfort in everything; the soul that complains can find comfort in nothing. Is it a choice? Yes!
May the Lord fill you today with blessing after blessing after blessing, and never forget that you are
A new born baby just arrived in the Deaton family, the sixteenth grandchild,
the eight granddaughter, Willow. What a precious sweet gift from God she
is. Children are a joy in any normal household, as is the newly
born-again Christian to the Church.
Willow is very content to have the milk she needs now, but just like our
latest grandson, Caleb, who is six months old now, she will want to add her
Nanny's homemade apple sauce. Then later she will want to have the apple
itself, as well as many other solid foods. It's normal.
But is it normal for a Christian to say I am content to stay on the milk of
the word. This is not a compliment to those who constantly boast that they
are satisfied with "the simple things," and fail to study God's Word, as II Tim.
2:15 commands. A new-born babe in Christ is a joy to behold, but every
born-again Christian should grow through the study of the Word. I Pet. 2:2 says:
"As newborn babes desire the sincere [pure] milk of the Word, that ye may grow
Are you hungry for something more than you are allowing yourself? Get
yourself into the study of the Bible, stop at the Christian book store and pick
up a good book on Christian living. Time changes at mid-night so you will
have an extra hour in the morning. The old you would say: "I'll use that
extra hour for myself, and sleep in," but if you give that extra hour to God,
and come to Sunday school in the morning you will never regret it.
You hungry for something more, something that will help you grow! May
the Lord bless your week-end, and never forget that you are loved!!!
In all honesty, there have been times in our lives
that we felt we were loved by no one, and that was probable initiated by our
lack of love for ourselves. Now if that is true of you today, then it
would be hard for you to believe that God loves you; but the Bible tells us that
while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. So regardless how bad you
believe you are, how unlovable, or how great the sins are that you have
committed, He loved you enough to die for you, and that was an horrible
death. It is hard to describe God's love or any other of His attributes,
as the following from Tozer points out.
(Moses took us back to the beginning of all that we see, all that we call
the universe. He took us back before the stars and moon were, before space was
and before time was, and said, "In the beginning God created the heavens and the
earth" (Genesis 1:1). So Moses said that the One who calls us to Himself has a
right to do so because He antedates time, He transcends space, He fills His
universe and He is God. . . . David, in Psalm 103, showed that this God is not
only a God who makes mountains, hills, rivers and streams, who rides upon the
wings of the clouds, but He loves His people. "For as high as the heavens are
above the earth, so great is His love for those who fear Him" (v. 11). "But from
everlasting to everlasting the Lord's love is with those who fear Him, and His
righteousness with their children's children--with those who keep His covenant
and remember to obey His precepts" (vv. 17-18). David tried to impart the
incommunicable, tried to tell what cannot be told of the wonder of
As I read this, I thought of how difficult it was for David
to write about, or explain, God's love. It's not any easier, some
twenty-five hundred years later, as we can see from the old Church hymn that was
again made popular by Mercy Me.
"The love of God is greater far
than tongue or pen can ever tell
It goes beyond the highest star and reaches
to the lowest hell
The guilty pair, bowed down with care God gave His Son to
His erring child He reconciled and pardoned from his sin
"Could we with ink the ocean fill and were the skies of parchment
Were every stalk on earth a quill and every man a scribe by trade
write the love of God above would drain the ocean dry
Nor could the scroll
contain the whole though stretched from sky to sky
"O love of God, how rich and pure! How measureless and strong!
forevermore endure the saints' and angels' song"
manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the
sons of God:...." 1 John 3:1
May the One who first ever loved, bless you today!!!
Here we are, in the middle of the work-week, and do we ask ourselves if we
are growing any in the Lord? Do we see any progression in our spiritual
life? Is there a lot of toiling and spinning of our wheels in our study
and meditation, or in all our efforts, to see little growth if any?
Jesus says: "Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil
not, neither do they spin..." Luke 12:27a To
produce all that Solomon had, there was a lot of toiling and spinning that went
on. Jesus is saying, "that is not the way for you. Rest in Me as the
If we could ask the lilies, or a grape vine, or an apple tree, how they grow
so rapidly and with such success, their answer would be that they are not
concerned about their growing, and are hardly conscious that they do grow.
That their Lord has told them to abide in Him, and has promised that, if they do
abide they will certainly bring forth much fruit; and that they are concerned,
therefore, only about the abiding, which is their part, and to leave all else to
the Husbandman, who is able to bring about their success, arrayed in a way that
pleases Him. If they could talk, they might just tell us to study
John 15:1-12 again.
Can one be the garden and the gardener. The lilies are not looking at
themselves, but turning their faces toward the sun. Can we look only unto
Jesus, in the middle of the work-week in this crowded world we live in, leaving
it all in His hands, with no concern about our growth, or what we perceive as a
lack of it?
"I feel as weak as a violet
Alone with the awful sky;
Winds wander, and dews drop earthward,
Rain fall, suns rise and set.
Earth whirls; and all but to prosper
A poor little violet!"
God bless you and yours today, and always keep in mind that you are loved!!!
Henry D. is from Southern Indiana and writes these wonderful daily devotionals to encourage those at the Dogwood Community Church located in Paoli, Indiana. Henry has graciously agreed to share these wonderful devotionals here at Without Excuse Ministries to encourage you our valued guest!