Devotions

Devotions

 

Memory Verse of The Week

“Children, obey your parents in everything, for this pleases the Lord.” Colossians 3:20 (ESV)


Monday

Have you ever had one of these days? You ask your child to put away the toys and when he/she asks why, you explain the best you can, and your child asks “Why?” again and again, until 30 minutes have passed, and you're exhausted so you do it yourself? I have had plenty of these situations while raising my son.
Why do we tend to ask, “Why?” over and over and not just do what we’re asked to do? I imagine when the Israelites were wandering the desert for 40 years, they too continued to ask, “Why?” Their answer was a reflection of not obeying God in the first place and of not keeping Him as their only God. God wanted them to worship only Him, to trust only Him, and to follow only Him, but they succumbed to their own wants and desires.
Are you wandering the desert right now? Are you seeking different ways to get out of it? Don’t make the same mistake as the Israelites and put your faith and trust into something man-made. Trust the One Who loves you, Who will always provide a way out. Your only requirement is to obey Him above everything else! 
Written by Jessica Miller


Read: Exodus 32:1-8; Joshua 5:6; Psalm 128:1;
Tuesday

When Jon and I got married, we decided that our one house rule would be to respect others. Respect encompasses and includes so many things, such as respecting the way we speak to each other and what words we use; respecting each other’s opinions; respecting each other to listen first; and so on. We tried our best to raise our son with this one house rule, also. Sometimes it was successful and other times not. I remember when our son would argue with me about something he desperately wanted at the time. He would come into the conversation with a monotone voice pleading his cause. After I would hear him out, I’d make my decision, which was often “no.” He would start over with his reasons, but his voice would get louder and louder over time. I guess he thought he could change my mind by getting louder and using harsher words. Boy, was he wrong. After some time, either the same day/night or the next day, he would come back to me and apologize for his tone. Although he disrespected me, I always forgave him.  Thank goodness God always forgives us when we disrespect Him! I don’t even want to count how many times I’ve gotten angry with God or told Him He was wrong in my current situation. Respecting others should be simple! It should be a simple rule of life! How are you doing at being respectful?  Written by Jessica Miller


Read: Colossians 4:5-6; Daniel 9:9; Ephesians 4:32;
Wednesday

Here is a story from one of our Cove students: “One night I was dying to go to youth group with a friend, but my family had some stuff we needed to do. My mom said I couldn't go, but I snuck out of the house and went anyway. Halfway through the message, my mom showed up. Boy, was she steamed! I thought going to that service was definitely something God wanted me to do. But the fact is, I went against God's will that night by disobeying my mom. As a result, I lost my mom's trust.” God gave us parents so they can help guide us into becoming adults. God wants our parents to follow Him and He wants them to instruct and guide us in the way we should live our lives. That’s their responsibility. As long as the things our parents ask us to do don’t go against God’s commands, we need to lovingly obey them. That is our responsibility.  Written by Jessica Miller


Read: Colossians 3:20; Ephesians 6:1-3;
Thursday

My mom just came into town, so I got the chance to practice all this, “honor your parents” stuff. We got along extremely well, especially considering our rocky relationship in the past. Thankfully, God has done a great work of healing and forgiveness in our relationship. From the very beginning, we see that God is a God of order (Genesis 1). He separates light from the darkness, creating night and day (verses 3-5). He creates the heavens, dry land, and seas (verses 9-10). He covers the earth with vegetation, plants, and trees (verse 12). He brings forth living creatures (verse 24). Then God said, “‘Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth’” (Genesis 1:26). Verse 27 goes on to say, “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.” Now fast forward to Ephesians 5 and 6 where instructions for Christian households are provided. It begins with instructions for husbands and wives. Then, Ephesians 6:1 says, “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right.” God, the Creator of the universe has a certain order for His creation. The passage continues, “‘Honor your father and mother’—which is the first commandment with a promise— ‘so that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth’” (Ephesians 6:2–3). God, Who designed family, tells us that by honoring our parents, we can experience greater enjoyment of life, and even longer life. God wrote the instruction manual for family, and by following this order, we can operate at our best. Written by Patty Weber


Read: Genesis 1; Ephesians 6:1-3;
Friday

Over the Easter weekend, my husband and I made an unexpected trip to Ohio to visit family. On the way there, his sister dropped a family drama “bombshell” on us. We were stunned by the news, and we did not know how we would act upon arrival to his parents’ house. Immediately, my husband called his mom, then made a separate call to his dad. After he got off the phone, he said something to the effect of, “I don’t remember the last time I asked my parents for advice. That was really good advice.” Even though this story is about my husband and his parents, I refrain from asking my parents for advice, or really including them in my life much at all (they live in Ohio too). I think pride is at the root of it. I can fall into judging their parenting job, or picking out their flaws as people. In contrast, God calls us to a life of humility. During His ministry, Jesus frequently taught about humility. In Luke 14, Jesus tells a parable of guests choosing their seats at a wedding (verse 7). He challenges us to humble ourselves, “For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted” (Luke 14:11). In the ultimate example of humility, the Bible tells us that Jesus “humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross” (Philippians 2:8). We need to humble ourselves, and honor our parents, because that is how we can experience God’s best for our families. God knows what is best for family because He created family. He calls us to honor our father and mother (Exodus 20:12). He does not add any qualifiers like, “if they have never hurt you, or if they deserve it.” Instead, we are called to humble ourselves and put our parents in the place of honor. Again, let’s follow Jesus’ example on this one. “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8). We can love and honor our parents who are sinners and imperfect people, because Jesus did it for us. Written by Patty Weber


Read: Philippians 2:8: Luke 14: 7-11: Exodus 20:12; Romans 5:8;

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