Verse Meditation–Amos 4.5

  “‘Present your bread made with yeast as an offering of thanksgiving. Then give your extra voluntary offerings so you can brag about it everywhere! This is the kind of thing you Israelites love to do,’ says the Sovereign Lord” (Amos 4.5 NLT). Seeded in the Flesh God’s Chosen People were continuing with their religious ceremonies that God had called them to long ago; however, their obedience had lost the true nature of repentance and worship. Instead of offering out of pure hearts, their intentions were all wrong. First, they were giving with a hollow hearts, merely as an act of religious norms. Second, they Continue reading

Verse Meditation–Amos 3.7

Masterpiece Made Known “For the Lord God does nothing without revealing his secret to his servants the prophets” (Amos 3.7 ESV). So many times we run desperately to God, exhausted from trying to guess what He is doing in our lives. We feel lost and confused, and we wonder why God is not being more clear about His plans for us. Yes, there is a point of trust and step of faith that all Christians must incorporate in their journey as Believers in Christ; however, God does not leave us empty handed and clueless. He has supplied us with His Continue reading

Verse Meditation–Amos 1.1

Point of Humility “The words of Amos, who was among the shepherds of Tekoa, which he saw concerning Israel in the days of Uzziah king of Judah and in the days of Jeroboam the son of Joash, king of Israel, two years before the earthquake” (Amos 1.1 ESV). Amos was a shepherd from Tekoa, a small village close to Bethlehem. He lived in a time when the rich were exploiting the poor, never considering that they would be accountable for their actions. Amos would definitely not have been respected, and his words would not be honored during this time. A Continue reading

Granola Bar Devotional: Citizens of Heaven

I had to be put under for a dental procedure. My single wisdom tooth needed to be pulled, and I can say I was honestly more worried about going under anesthesia than I was having the procedure done. Would I be fully asleep? How would it feel? What really happens as my body slips into unconsciousness? I laid on the dental bed, surrounded by bright lights and white walls. The dental staff buzzed around me in their normal routine, wearing their little surgical masks. I prayed for them in my slurred speech affected by the laughing gas, and the nurse Continue reading

Verse Meditation–Joel 3.10

 A Warrior Heart “Beat your plowshares into swords, and your pruning hooks into spears; let the weak say, ‘I am a warrior’” (Joel 3.10 ESV). We find in the Book of Joel that God is fighting for the people whom He loves. God will fight for us too. Whatever arena to which we are called, God has special plans for us in His battle for good on this earth. He can transform the everyday resources at our disposal to win victories in His Kingdom. Many of God’s People in the Old Testament worked the land, cultivating fields of crops and Continue reading

Verse Meditation– Joel 2.25

Never Wasted “The Lord says, ‘I will give you back what you lost to the swarming locusts, the hopping locusts, the stripping locusts, and the cutting locusts. It was I who sent this great destroying army against you’” (Joel 2.25 NLT). The Lord sent devastation to God’s chosen people because they had forsaken Him. They disobeyed His commands and took control of their own destinies–no more relying on an All-knowing God. Therefore, the consequences of their decisions were devastating. God had already warned them to choose blessings or curses (Deuteronomy 30.19). However, once God’s people repented, He was quick to redeem and restore Continue reading

Verse Meditation–Joel 2.23

Early and Latter Rains “Be glad, O children of Zion, and rejoice in the Lord your God, for he has given the early rain for your vindication; he has poured down for you abundant rain, the early and the latter rain, as before” (Joel 2.23 NLT). The Bible has many themes on the Promise Land. God plants our promises across the wilderness at the foot of Zion, the place where He dwells. When we start our journey to our dreams, we usually start in a flesh-centered atmosphere (our strength, our resources, our abilities, our plans, etc.) but as we wander with God, we eventually Continue reading

Verse Meditation–Joel 2.18

  Two Kisses “Then the LORD became jealous for his land and had pity on his people” (Joel 2.18 ESV). Several emotions get a bad wrap but none more than jealousy. Like almost everything, there is a holy and an unholy expression of it. Christians are so quick to label things as inherently good or bad without realizing that it is the intent filling it that makes it so. Judas gave Jesus a Kiss of Death, yet Paul exhorts Believers to give each other a Holy Kiss (Luke 22.48 & 2 Corn. 13.12). A kiss is not inherently good or Continue reading

Verse Meditation–Joel 2.13

Torn Hearts “Don’t tear your clothing in your grief, but tear your hearts instead. Return to the Lord your God, for he is merciful and compassionate, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love. He is eager to relent and not punish” (Joel 2.13 NLT). Tearing the clothes was symbolic of deep grief, mourning and repentance; however, like many symbolic traditions, the “rending of garments” had become a hollow action with no implication of true humility. When Caiaphas, the High Priest, tore his clothing, claiming Jesus (God in the flesh) to be blasphemy, he did so in an atmosphere of self-righteousness. Pride caused Caiaphas to Continue reading

Verse Meditation–Hosea 14.2

Take Up Your Words “Take words with you and return to the LORD. Say to him: ‘Forgive all our sins and receive us graciously, that we may offer the fruit of our lips’” (Hosea 14.2 NIV). Christians will eventually come to a place when we realize that we can’t live victoriously alone. Like the prodigal son, God allows us to waste away our own efforts, abilities, resources and resolve until we come to the conclusion that we have nothing and can do nothing without God. Our self-reliance will never accomplish the fullness of God’s will for our lives, but our Continue reading