Welcome 2014!

This is going to be an amazing year!  It’s such a fun thought to know that there are bunches of us who want to know God better and are waking up and beginning everyday meeting with Him.  It makes those blurry-eyed mornings a little more “doable” when you know you’re not the only one in the world who is going for it! 

The Daily Reading section is going to be used for notes about the daily readings. The purpose is to simply highlight the fact that God wants to speak to us every day.  He isn’t silent!  Sometimes we just need a little extra perspective to see the things He may want us to see.  Our hope is that these daily comments would provide encouragement, open your heart in a new way or simply just “add to” your own personal time with Him. Wewill have new entries each day that correspond with the daily reading schedule – so keep checking in! 

God bless,

Phil Joel

 

Daily Reading

Thursday
Apr242014

April 24th deliberatePeople. post by Phil and Heather Joel + today's dP reading schedule:  

Judges 1:1-2:9 / Luke 21:29-22:13 / Psalm 90:1-91:16 / Proverbs 13:24-25

 

 Standout Verse: Luke 22:27

“For who is greater, he who sits at the table or he who serves? Is it not he who sits at the table? Yet I am among you as the One who serves.”

Again, Jesus stated He came to serve and not be served. His ways and His Kingdom are completely contrary to the value systems that the world holds dear.  The enemy of our souls is a hustler, telling us that fame and fortune, position and power will make us feel significant and whole…the more people we have working for us, serving us, or "following us", the more validated we will be. He’s a liar.

If we are not walking closely with the Lord, we will feel an emptiness that will make it hard to see beyond our own neediness to the needs of others and we’ll find it difficult to serve without looking for some kind of worldly return.   However, as we CHOOSE to walk closely with the Lord, our neediness will be filled with His life-giving truth and our eyes will be opened to see those around us that we can serve without any hidden motive that desires recognition and praise.  

Serving and loving others well is an up-side-down concept that the world stands contrary to, but it is completely logical, beautiful and life-giving to a person whose  heart has been regenerated by Jesus.

Wednesday
Apr232014

April 23rd deliberatePeople. post by Phil and Heather Joel + today's dP reading schedule:  

Judges 1:1-2:9 / Luke 21:29-22:13 / Psalm 90:1-91:16 / Proverbs 13:24-25

 

Standout Verse:

Proverbs 13:24

“He who spares the rod spoils his son, but he who loves him disciplines him PROMPTLY.”

The key focus of this verse is the word PROMPTLY, meaning “right away” or “on time” - while they are still young and most able to be shaped.  As parents whose job it is to raise Godly children whose hearts are set on the things of Him, it is absolutely essential that we have TIME to do our job well…it is the KEY INGREDIENT to parenting!

God has given us the task of raising our children so they will enter into adulthood with strong, steadfast foundations.  This requires years of hands-on shaping, discipline, molding, and encouraging them in the way they should go.  This kind of focused work doesn’t just “happen”.  We can’t expect to have amazing results if we don’t have time to do our jobs well.  We can’t “relax”, ‘take a break” or leave our job to someone else…if we do this at any point, things won’t go well.

Parenting can definitely be an overwhelming job at times, but the TRUTH is WE CAN DO IT WITH GOD”S HELP – that’s His design!  He calls us to FIRST to LOVE HIM WITH ALL OUR HEARTS, MIND AND STRENGTH, and then TEACH THIS LIFE-GIVING TRUTH TO OUR CHILDREN.  The love we have for our children should propel us to examine ourselves and make the time in our lives necessary to teach and train them up to know their Heavenly Father! 

Get the vision for your family and go for it (whether you have a family yet or not).  He will never give us a job too big or too difficult for us.  God promises to walk with us each step of the way.  Where God guides, He also provides! BE ENCOURAGED and INSPIRED!

Tuesday
Apr222014

April 22nd deliberatePeople. post by Phil and Heather Joel + today's dP reading schedule:  

Joshua 24:1-33 / Luke 21:1-28 / Psalm 89:38-52 / Proverbs 13:20-23

 

Standout Verse:

Joshua 24: Re-capping the Israelites journey in the wilderness

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(v. 15) “Choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the river or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell.  But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”

In this fast-paced world we live in, it is essential that we SLOW DOWN long enough to REMEMBER God’s continued faithfulness in our lives.  If we don’t do this, our finite, human minds will forget the amazing things He has done and we end up susceptible to falling prey to the enemy’s lies and discouragement making it easy to lose our way.

As we REMEMBER the journey and think about the miraculous ways He’s delivered us…the sea’s He’s parted, the manna He’s provided for us, the ways He’s met our daily needs, and the battles He’s won for us it builds our faith and helps us acknowledge His mighty hand in our lives.  When we do this, our hope is ignited, our courage grows, and we are able to walk forward trusting Him to a greater measure. 

It makes the decision to CHOOSE WHOM WE WILL SERVE all the more clear-cut.  As our eyes are fixed on Him and we acknowledge the Lord for all He has done in our lives, the decision to continue to CHOOSE Him and walk with Him in whole-hearted devotion is an easy one! 

Monday
Apr212014

April 21th deliberatePeople. post by Phil and Heather Joel + today's dP reading schedule:  

Joshua 22:21-23:16 / Luke 20:27-47 / Psalm 89:14-37 / Proverbs 13:17-19

Standout Verse:

Joshua 23:6, 9-11,13

“Therefore be very courageous to keep and do all that is written in the Book of the Law of Moses, lest you turn aside from it to the right or to the left. (v. 9) For the Lord has driven out from before you great and strong nations; but as for you, no one has been able to stand against you to this day. One man of you shall chase a thousand, for the Lord your God is He who fights for you, as He promised you. Therefore, take careful heed to yourselves that you love the Lord your God. Or else if indeed you do go back and cling to the remnant of these nations…

Obedience is something we CAN do!  God calls us to be COURAGEOUS as we CHOOSE Him and His ways.  Over and over we read about the promises of blessing, provision and protection the Lord gives to those who are faithful and obedient. When we are walking in a devoted, passionate, daily relationship with the Lord pursuinHis truth, clinging to Him instead of the things of this world, we will experience His life-giving peace.

Sunday
Apr202014

April 20th deliberatePeople. post by Phil and Heather Joel + today's dP reading schedule:  

Joshua 21:1-22:20 / Luke 20:1-26 / Psalm 89:1-13 / Proverbs 13:15-16

Standout Verse:

Proverbs 13:15-16

“Good understanding gains favor, but the way of the unfaithful is hard.  Every prudent man acts with knowledge, but a fool lays open his folly.”

As believers we still possess the ability to choose. We can choose whether or not we are going to be prudent in seeking the truth and our knowledge of God, or, we can choose to keep Him at an arms length and, either consciously or subconsciously, take on the lies of the enemy and of this world.

If we constantly choose lies over the truth in any area of our lives it will eventually catch up with us and we will bear the fruit of our FOLLY, which will cause damage to ourselves and those around us causing our way to be hard.

It is essential for us as believers to have a GOOD UNDERSTANDING of who God is and what He requires of us – and, then, walk in obedience. Being obedient to God allows us to enjoy His presence and feel the wonder and reality of His closeness. It’s through a lifestyle of choosing Him that we gain favor and experience His peace and find strength in His joy.