Home Is Where The Heart Is

S. O. A. P.

Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional!

S-cripture:

Philemon 1:1b-2 To Philemon our dear friend and fellow worker—also to Apphia our sister and Archippusour fellow soldier—and to the church that meets in your home.

O-bservation:

St. Paul writes to Philemon, a friend of his, concerning Philemon's former employee Onesimus. Besides Philemon, Paul mentions a few choice friends and concludes by saying, "I'm writing this to the church that meets in your home."

A-pplication:

We know very little of Philemon except that he was a financially prosperous leader of the church at Colossae. What we do know about him has to do with his HEART. He loved Jesus and he loved the Church. At that time in history it was difficult to be a "Follower of Jesus." Many were persecuted and killed for their faith. There were no big Christian church buildings to meet in. That didn't happen for several hundred years after this writing. Those who owned a house opened their houses for worship. Philemon had a house that he lived in, but his heart was connected to his church. His brothers and sisters in Christ were invited to gather at his place because he decided to place his HEART (his CHURCH) in his house. As a boy growing up, my parents always made our house a place people could gather for worship, because "Home Is Where The Heart Is." Whether it's a third story rented flat or a palatial mansion, we are all called today to make our house HIS HOME.

P-rayer:

Dear Jesus, My house is always open to people. Help me keep people at the center of my purpose for living. And help me lead those people to You. Amen
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We Are The Home Of God

S. O. A. P.

Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional!

S-cripture:

1 Corinthians 3:16
Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in your midst?

O-bservation:

St. Paul was one of the brightest young Jewish lawyers of his day. He had turned from his persecution of Christians, who in Paul’s time were known as “The Way,” and in fact, had become one of them. I never refer to a Jewish person as a convert to Christianity. I refer to them as a believer in Jesus. A Jewish person is always Jewish, yet Jesus desired that they receive Him as the Messiah. Paul had changed his mind and became a believer in Jesus. He taught the Early Church that each one of them was the temple of God and that the Spirit of God lived in the house (our bodies) that we have created for Him. Paul encouraged the Christians then, and all of us now, to take care of our bodies because “We Are The Home Of God.”

A-pplication:

When my wife and I were very young, in our early marriage years, we purchased a house for $13k! Yes, everything you’re thinking is probably true. But we worked hard to transform that place. Why? Because we lived there. By the time we sold it, it truly had turned from being a house to become our home. It was our dwelling place. When we first come to Christ, the house (our bodies) that we present Him is usually quite trashed out because of sin and neglect. However, when He comes in to dwell in us, He begins to make it into a home. Things we used to do and say and think and places we used to go just aren’t appealing anymore. The reason is that those activities and places tend to trash the house that our Lord lives in. With His help today, we must remember that “We Are The Home Of God.”

P-rayer:

Dear Jesus, This AM, I present my body to You as a living sacrifice. Please make this house of mine Your home. Amen
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Just Come Home

S. O. A. P.

Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional!

S-cripture:

Ezekiel 14:11b
“They will be my people, and I will be their God, declares the Sovereign Lord.”

O-bservation:

These words from the sovereign Lord through Ezekiel reveal “God’s Heart.” Ezekiel could not have prophesied at a more difficult time in Judah’s history. The people had strayed from the Lord Almighty, and these were, and remain to this day, the people of God. Yet even in the midst of false prophets who were prophesying that Israel would have a long season of peace, the Lord said, “There’s coming a day when I know that you will be my people and I will be your God.” That is, and forever shall be, “The Heart Of God.”

A-pplication:

I think if God could hang a banner on Heaven’s entrance, it would simply say, “Just Come Home!” My wife and I have that banner out all the time for our children and their families. But it’s a different banner for us. Fortunately, our kids are all “Jesus People” and have a like mind when it comes to faith. For us, it’s “come hang out.” It’s not, “Hey, you’re all messed up, you’re living like the devil himself, just come home!” NO! Fortunately for us, it’s not that kind of banner hung on the front entrance to the house for the rebel child. Every human on earth has been made in the image of God and bears the imago Dei in their life. Unfortunately, many of them are running from the God who loves them the most. It’s to that group of people in every nation that Jesus is saying today, “Just Come Home.”

P-rayer:

Dear Jesus, Thank You for this reminder today, that no matter how wayward any of us become You desire that we would be Your people and that You would be our God! I’ve dedicated my life to reminding people of Your banner that says, “Just Come Home.” Amen
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Take Care Of Home

S. O. A. P.

Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional!

S-cripture:

1 Samuel 4:18 When he mentioned the ark of God, Eli fell backward off his chair by the side of the gate. His neck was broken and he died, for he was an old man, and he was heavy. He had led Israel forty years.

O-bservation:

Eli was the priest of Israel, and he was Israel’s leader. In time, Israel demanded a king, but this story preceded that time. In Eli’s day, they were ruled by Mosaic Law, which said that the lead priest’s son would take his place through succession. However, Eli failed to “Take Care Of Home” first. He failed to lead his sons. He raised another family’s son (Samuel) to greatness, but his sons were stealing from the people while acting as priests. Furthermore, they were sleeping with women who ministered at the entrance to the tent of meeting. Eli tried to rebuke them to no avail. Then he failed to take care of his body. He yielded to the lust of the flesh by overeating and becoming fat. In the end, it killed him, and his priestly succession was ended when his boys were killed by the Lord Himself.

A-pplication:

How can we be effective in the Lord’s work if our personal vessel of service unto the Lord (our body) is out of control? Also, when our immediate family is completely void of direction because we’ve put business over loved ones, how effective are we? God is calling His people to get in shape and love those He has placed in our home first. When that is happily in place, our marketplace work for the Lord becomes all that we believe it can be. But unlike Eli the priest, the first thing we must do is “Take Care Of Home.”

P-rayer:

Dear Jesus, My prayer this AM is that You would help me keep the TEMPLE where the Holy Spirit resides (my body) in shape and my family energized for Jesus. Amen
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At Home Near Jesus

S. O. A. P.

Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional!

S-cripture:

Psalm 73:28a But as for me, it is good to be near God.

O-bservation:

The writer of this Psalm promotes an elaborate array of complaints concerning "Arrogant Rich People" who had done him wrong. When he finally went to church in verse 17, everything made sense, and he told the Lord ... "It's Good for Me To Be Near You!"

A-pplication:

I have found it to be true that the best way to keep a good attitude in life is to live CLOSE to JESUS. When a person is absent from fellowship with Jesus, their attention leaves the realm of the vertical and becomes imprisoned in the horizontal. That's MAN'S territory! When one's eyes are on other men and women, wounds are the result. Statements like the following are regular utterances: "He did that, she said this. I couldn't believe the way they treated me. You could tell they thought they were better than me!" All of that is horizontal talk. It's crushing and depressing and it shrink's one's world. The Psalmist went back to church (the Synagogue, vs.17) and it was as if his mind recalibrated. Right away he saw clearly. Everything was in order again. All because he was back ... "At Home Near Jesus."

P-rayer:

Dear Jesus, I don't ever want to live a long distance away from Your presence. I want to see clearly by staying vertical, with my eyes fixed on You. I know if I can see You clearly the horizontal stuff will take care of itself. Amen
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