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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Watch Me!

S. O. A. P.

Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional!

S-cripture:

Titus 2:7a In everything set them an example by doing what is good.

O-bservation:

In addressing one of his young associates, the Apostle Paul told Titus that he was to be an example or role model for young men and women. He was to accomplish this by doing what is GOOD.

A-pplication:

Being a role model for young adults is not an easy task. We must first believe that others are watching what we do and how we do it. Not only are our actions important, our words are just as important. What we present by way of our words is being listened to. There's a great need not only in the world, but also within the "Body of Jesus Followers," that we CLEAN IT UP! I hear young adults say … I hear you "Talk the Talk," but can you "Walk the Walk?" Paul, the writer here, had earlier said to the church at Corinth, "Follow me as I follow Christ" (1 Cor. 11:1). In other words, Paul was saying "Don't just listen to what I say, watch what I do!" He was putting himself out there. He was being a role model for young adults. Paul proved that not only could he "Talk the Talk,” he could also "Walk the Walk." I trust you're ready to join the Apostle today and say to the young adults around you, "Watch Me!"

P-rayer:

Dear Jesus, Today it is my earnest prayer that I could humbly say to young adults, "Watch Me!" I know You are calling my generation to "Clean It Up" in word and deed. Help me lead the way. Amen
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Deception Under The Banner of Knowledge

S. O. A. P.

Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional!

S-cripture:

1 Timothy 6:20 Timothy, guard what has been entrusted to your care. Turn away from godless chatter and the opposing ideas of what is falsely called knowledge.

O-bservation:

Shortly after writing these words to his disciple Timothy, St. Paul was beheaded in Rome. Here was a man, Paul, who had received the highest education possible at that time in Judaism. In Galatians he tells us that after his conversion the Holy Spirit took him to Arabia for three years of training by the Lord (1:17). So if anyone was capable of discussing knowledge in that day, it was Paul. Paul said, "Timothy hold fast to the faith that I and others have given you. Because many have listened to opposing views to Christian Faith and call it KNOWLEDGE! In so doing they have been deceived."

A-pplication:

Timothy DID stay true to the faith. He became the Bishop of the Church in Ephesus, and in time was martyred for his Faith! Today, much more often than not, we Christian people send our Christian children away to University only to see them fall away from their faith. Thankfully, a number of them return to their roots in time. But sadly, many never do. Why is this? I believe it's found in this verse. What others call KNOWLEDGE St. Paul calls DECEPTION. We must be careful when we engage in ideas opposing our Christian faith, but then fail to stand up for our faith. "Deception Under The Banner of Knowledge" is not something we should be afraid of, but something that causes us to stand strong and not whither when attacked for our beliefs.

P-rayer:

Dear Jesus, This AM I'm going IN! I know You've got my back. Keep me strong! Amen
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Shipwrecked Faith

S. O. A. P.

Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional!

S-cripture:

1 Timothy 1:19 Holding on to faith and a good conscience, which some have rejected and so have suffered shipwreck with regard to the faith.

O-bservation:

St. Paul spoke as an aged preacher of the gospel to his young disciple Timothy and said, "I am commanding you to hold onto your faith and a strong conscience, which some have rejected and their faith has been shipwrecked!"

A-pplication:

At one time or another, all of us have faced weariness in our faith. In other words, faith can get tired if we're not fueling it every day with personal devotion and prayer. When we allow tired faith to take over, laxness sets in to our way of thinking. The conscience becomes weakened to sin’s temptation. Now our conscience goes from being strong to being lazy. In time, tired faith and a lazy conscience leave folks with "Shipwrecked Faith." Has your life with Jesus become "Ho-Hum?" Are you bored with living? Please, today, awaken out of your slumber. Really! Wake up! It's dangerous when you sail so close to the shoreline. If you're not careful you can become dashed upon the rocks of COMPROMISE. This world is filled with people who failed to contend or fight for their faith. They in turn got lazy in their conscience and today they have experienced ... "Shipwrecked Faith." But that will not happen to you. Hoist the mast of FAITH today and sail into the deep with Jesus. Your faith will STRENGTHEN and your conscience will be STEADFAST.

P-rayer:

Dear Jesus, With Your help today I won't get lazy. I will, by FAITH, sail away from the shoreline of compromise where the rocks are and into the deep where FAITH is my "Life Preserver!" Amen
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You Need A Higher View of Things

S. O. A. P.

Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional!

S-cripture:

Colossians 3:1 Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God.

O-bservation:

In this passage, "The Great Apostle" reminds all "Followers of Jesus" that when Christ raised us from the dead spiritually, He raised us up to the vantage point He rules from. Jesus is at the right hand of God Almighty. We are to live life from that elevated vantage point at all times.

A-pplication:

Too often, believers operate from a "Buried in Sin and Shame" position rather than a "Raised Into Heavenly Places With Christ Jesus" position. We have direct access to the Father through Jesus Christ, who is seated at God’s right hand in Heaven. That is where the Apostle Paul commands us to set our affection and attention. Elevate your viewpoint. Instead of "Looking Up" from your problems, "Look Down" on your problems with your "Problem Solver," JESUS. You don't need more money, more love, a better job, or more friends right now. Respect and honor won't help you, and neither can earthly favor. All of these things have their limitations. What you and I really need is a better vantage point. You need to get up on Jesus’ shoulders right now. "You Need A Higher View of Things."

P-rayer:

Dear Jesus, I'm not looking for more stuff. Instead I'm looking for a more elevated view of things. I'm setting my view Way Up High with YOU! Amen
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