This Father’s Great Joy

S. O. A. P.

Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional!

S-cripture:

3 John 4 I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth.

O-bservation:

John the Beloved is speaking of his disciples, who have followed Christ because of his influence over their lives. He calls them his children when he says, “My greatest joy as a father is when you walk in accordance with the truth.”

A-pplication:

As great a blessing as this wonderful Apostle was to the Body of Christ, I believe the Lord has blessed me and others in a greater way than John ever knew. I know that sounds preposterous and yet hear me out. Many leaders are a father or mother in two ways. They have a Spiritual Calling as a pastor. The people they serve, they do so in such a way that is fatherly or motherly in nature, taking care of those around them. But they also have biological children. They are their first calling. It has brought me the greatest joy imaginable to see my sons follow the truth, and to see the people I serve as a pastor also follow the truth. Dear John had no biological children that history records, so you can understand my double joy. It is “This Fathers Great Joy.”

P-rayer:

Dear Jesus, Thank You this AM that You have helped me be a father to biological sons and a father to people who have allowed me to serve them as their pastor. I am doubly blessed because of YOU! Amen
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The Sword Of The Lord

S. O. A. P.

Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional!

S-cripture:

Jeremiah 47:6 Alas, sword of the Lord, how long till you rest? Return to your sheath; cease and be still.’

O-bservation:

Take out an ancient map of Israel and read this chapter again. It seems as if God is wielding his sword against each one of Israel’s ten foes at that time in history. Picture God standing in the middle of tiny Israel and turning three hundred and sixty degrees in a circle with his sword drawn to ward off Israel’s enemies. Jeremiah knows them all well and knows that judgment is coming to all of them, including tiny Israel, for their sins against a loving yet righteous God. But, there is the sense that God longs to put his sword away for all of the judgment that must follow the acts of perpetual rebellion against him.

A-pplication:

Here I am dragging my dear father into the story again. He’s in heaven now, but I would never have had a chance at heaven had it not been for him. In my day, my father had a belt to help me stay in line. I promise you he used it sparingly. Dad used his belt with a tear in his eyes. Today they would call him an abuser in his efforts to keep me out of my sins expected destination. He won, and so did I. But he never wanted to use what saved me. My heart's motivation was to go the opposite way he was leading me. Thank God he won the day. Each of my sons loves their grandfather for NOT keeping his sword in its sheath. At the end of this chapter the weeping prophet said, “But how can the sword of the Lord be placed back into its sheath when God has commanded its use? That has always been the dilemma a loving father faces.

P-rayer:

Dear Jesus, They probably won’t forgive me for writing this post. But, just like my father was forced by the love in his heart to save me from sin's destruction, I know that has always been your way as well. Thank you for coming to this planet to take the ultimate blow in order to erase our hopeless state. Amen
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He Will Rejoice Over You With Singing!

S. O. A. P.

Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional!

S-cripture:

Zephaniah 3:17 The Lord, your God, is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in his love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing.

O-bservation:

After a prolonged prophecy of the terrors of the Lord over his people for their sin, Zephaniah now begins to discuss God’s great love for his people and that he will save them and no longer rebuke them. There is such joy in the father’s heart towards his people (that includes you and me) that he literally rejoices over us with singing.

A-pplication:

As a boy growing up, I never ever questioned my father’s love for me, even though when I failed him, I felt as though I had forever broken his heart. Yes, there were times that I received not just correction but punishment for my wrongdoing. Even then, I never questioned his love. I didn’t understand it at the time, but dad used to recover quickly from his brokenness. In no time at all, we would be throwing the football or working in the yard together. I could tell that he really enjoyed being with me. For the rest of his life, until he went to heaven, he rejoiced over me with singing. Dad was always singing. Whatever I had done in my earlier years, he had long since forgotten and lived to love me. Maybe you didn’t have my experience, but your Heavenly Father is even better than my earthly father could ever be. If you love him today, no matter what you may have done in your past, “He Will Rejoice Over You With Singing!”

P-rayer:

Dear Jesus, This AM, I want to know what you’re singing over me. Because this line that I’ve read at least a hundred times, written by Zephaniah, has me picturing you singing over me. My dad used to always do that when I was a boy. Thank you, Lord, for forgetting my past and loving me enough to sing over me. Amen
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What Else Do You Need?

S. O. A. P.

Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional!

S-cripture:

Psalm 62:11,12a One thing God has spoken, two things I have heard: Power belongs to you, God, and with you, Lord, is unfailing love.

O-bservation:

In this simple statement, King David promotes all he really needed to know in order to serve God exclusively. He said that he had heard God speak, and even though he’d heard his voice speak once, he had two takeaways. First, God has and is ALL POWER. Second, his great God continuously displays his UNFAILING LOVE towards us. Think about that… “What Else Do You Need?”

A-pplication:

Oftentimes in these daily posts, I try and put myself into the position of a child in need of his father. So you know, this would be true of a little girl as well. What does a child need to truly feel secure while growing up? It comes down to these two things that David found true of our great God. Children need to feel as if their dad is big enough to handle any challenge they may face. When the challenge comes, they immediately run to their father, and he has the power to handle the problem. Second, a little child needs to feel like their dad loves them completely. Even if there are ten kids in the house, they still believe their dad loves them completely. In both of these two needs, the child is blessed with a sense of SECURITY. Unfortunately, not every earthly human gets those two gifts from their earthly father. But in time, if they will seek him, they will find their Father in heaven. When they do, they will say to themselves, “What Else Do You Need?”.

P-rayer:

Dear Jesus, I’m reminded this AM of the words of the Apostle Paul when he said, “For in Christ, all the fullness of the Diety lives in bodily form.” Because of this, “You’re all I really need!” I’m grateful today that I have truly found my security in you Lord! Amen
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The Power of The First

S. O. A. P.

Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional!

S-cripture:

Deuteronomy 21:17b That son is the first sign of his father’s strength. The right of the firstborn belongs to him.

O-bservation:

Moses established a law for the people of Israel in this scripture. It had to do with a man having two wives but loving one wife more than the other. If each wife had a son, even if the firstborn son was the unloved wife's son, a double portion of the father’s wealth must be bestowed on that son. The strength of the father was manifest through “The Power Of The First!”

A-pplication:

There was a time in the Old Testament when multiple wives were in no way discouraged. This is an unusual law, yet “The Power Of The First” has always been there. When we were kids, everybody wanted to go first. First in line was a big deal. “Oh teacher, pick me first” was always heard in the classroom. On the playground, the two captains would be chosen, and then kids would start screaming, “I want to be first! Pick me first!” There was always the idea that the first to break the womb, as in animals, was to be sacrificed to God. The first fruits were to be given to the Lord. And here we see that the firstborn son was to receive a double portion of his father’s inheritance. So yes, “The Power Of The First” has been established by God.

P-rayer:

Dear Jesus, I know I’m not first. There are just so many people on this planet. However, I am reminded that You said there is coming a day when the first shall be last and the last shall be first. I know my end will be better than my beginning. Amen
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