In today’s world, you’re told you can be anything you want to be. You can do anything you want to do. You can say anything you want to say. But in the light of God’s word, is that really true?
God’s word says that you were bought with a price. We see from scripture that the life you now live is no longer yours. So when it comes to being whoever you want to be, or following your own dreams and goals, know this, your life as a Christian isn’t only yours. You’re living for Jesus.
you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies. – 1 Corinthians 6:20 (NIV)
Knowing that we’re bought should empower us to live for God. In light of what Jesus has done for us, we should want to honor God. We should be desiring to honor God with our decisions, with our bodies, and with all our decisions.
So remember to get God involved in your decisions. When you don’t know who you are or what the future holds, know that your identity is found in God. When you get to know Him and honor Him, that’s where you’ll find your greatest fulfillment.
Today’s Truth: Your identity is found in honoring God.
Imagine this: You’re working at your first job. You’re so excited to start making money. The problem is, for some reason your boss seems to hate everything you do. No matter how hard you try, nothing you do ever seems right. It even seems like you might get fired. What do you do? How do you deal with someone who doesn’t seem to like you at all?
When someone doesn’t like you, it can begin to make you feel bad about yourself, can’t it? Sometimes, you begin to wonder if there is something wrong with you.
But here’s the truth. The truth is, not everyone is going to understand you. Not everyone is going to see your giftings, talents and strengths.
The question you have to ask yourself is where do I find my worth? Who am I living my life for?
that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death; – Philippians 3:10 (NAS)
If you’re living your life to please people, or to succeed by things you achieve, you’ll always be disappointed. Instead, take a moment and think about who it is you’re living your life for. Is it to please God? Is it to know God?
Success in life really comes down to knowing God. So regardless of how people treat you, regardless of whether you succeed at everything you do, or not, make sure that you have space in your life for knowing God. When you reach the end of your life, nothing will matter except whether you knew God. So make time for Him today.
Imagine this: You’re out for the school band. You’ve practiced your instrument, tried your hardest, and now it’s the moment of truth. Will you be chosen for an honor band? Let’s say that you’re pretty sure you’ll make it. And so you feel confident that nothing is going to keep you from being chosen.
The results are out. You go check the paper on the wall in the band room, and guess what….you didn’t get it. You can’t believe it. All that practice feels like was worthless. What do you do now?
You’ve probably faced a similar situation to this. What do you do when you put so much effort and energy into something, only to find out that it was for nothing? It’s easy to begin to get down on yourself and question your worth.
One thing to remember in situations like these is that your worth is not based in your achievements. Whether you do great at band, or you’re the worst player in the history of all instrument playing, it doesn’t matter. Why?
Because worrying about living your life for yourself, and to make yourself feel good isn’t the point of life. The point of life as Christians should be knowing Jesus and becoming more like Him. He should be where you find purpose and identity. So if you struggle with feeling not that good about yourself or your achievements, ask yourself who you’re living your life for? Is it for God and pleasing Him or is it to win awards, achievements and acknowledgement from others.
and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. – Galatians 2:20 (NIV)
When you come to the end of your life, it won’t matter what awards you won, what bands you made or didn’t make. What will matter is what you did with Jesus and if you spent your life in pursuit of Him.
I have asked one thing from the LORD; it is what I desire: to dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, gazing on the beauty of the LORD and seeking Him in His temple. – Psalm 27:4
Can you think of a time when you had a crush on someone? Maybe that person was in your math class, so instead of listening to your teacher you wonder what your crush is like. Perhaps you found out they were out for the band, so you decided to join too, just in case you got the chance to talk more with them. Because let’s be honest, when you like someone, you want to know all about them. You want to talk to them all you can.
That’s a lot like how we’re supposed to feel toward God. We should be desiring to be where God is. We should be thinking about Him and be wanting to know Him more. We get that when it comes to a crush, but it’s a bit harder with God, isn’t it?
How do we seek God and spend time with Him? One good place to start is by setting some time aside each day and talking with God and reading God’s word. You could begin by simply reading a scripture before bed and spend a couple of minutes praying. As you get comfortable, you could increase your time with the Lord. The more you spend time with Him the easier it gets.
Today’s Truth: Time spent getting to know God is never wasted.
Any time you spend getting to know God is not wasted. Knowing Jesus is the best decision you could ever make. So challenge yourself to go deeper with God and get to know Him better.
Don’t you hate having to listen? I know I do. Sometimes having to wait my turn to talk can take all the self-control I have. As God’s children, however, we should be living our lives differently than everyone else.
My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry – James 1:19 (NIV)
God says we should be quick to listen. That means that when we want to blurt out our ideas, and interrupt others, we have to challenge ourselves to listen instead. When we want to talk and share our point of view, we should be seeking to speak slowly instead. When we want to lose our cool and get mad, we should be slow to be angry instead.
That can seem overwhelming, can’t it. You might think, there’s no way you can remember to do these things and to be self-controlled.
Here’s the good news: you don’t have to. Instead, you can ask the Holy Spirit to be your helper. He can help you understand the tough things and also He can show you ways to make following God’s word easier. So today, don’t be discouraged. Don’t read things in the Bible and feel like you can’t do it. Instead realize that God has given you the help and empowerment you need to do good works for Him!
And I will forgive their wickedness, and I will never again remember their sins. – Hebrews 8:12 (NLT)
God has done something truly remarkable. Not only has He forgiven us of the sins that we have done, but He also states that He will not remember them ever again. God is so amazing that not only can He forgive sin, He can completely forget that we ever even sinned at all.
This fact is very freeing. You might believe God has forgiven you, but you feel like you need to keep bringing it back up to Him. You don’t. He’s forgiven you. You can move on.
If sin is still plaguing you with guilt realize that through Jesus, you are forgiven. There is no sin out there that God cannot and has not forgiven you of. In Jesus, you are completely forgiven and made new. Thank God for His forgiveness today! When those feelings of guilt come up today, speak out this scripture and remind yourself that you are forgiven.
What happens when you don’t do well for a grade at school? Do you shift the blame off yourself and onto someone or something else? It can be easy to want to do that. When you don’t get the grade you feel you deserve, it can be easy to want to defend yourself.
You might try to speak up and out to get attention and let everyone know why the grade you got was unfair. Now, it’s true, there might be a group project you worked on where someone didn’t do their part, and the grade you got was not fair. But for the most part, if you’ve got a good teacher, your grades reflect you and the work you did. (Or didn’t do)
Shifting the blame to someone else isn’t healthy. In fact, it’s a form of pride. Pride in our lives often shows up as needing to defend ourselves. We feel the need for justice, and so we go out of our way to let everyone know our situation.
To fear the Lord is to hate evil; I hate pride and arrogance, evil behavior and perverse speech. – Proverbs 8:13 (NIV)
Pride isn’t a good trait. When it comes down to it, pride lifts up our own interests and needs over those of others. It says I’m right and someone else is wrong. It often ignores the feelings and thoughts of others and of God.
God doesn’t want pride to become a part of our lives because of what it does to our heart and our relationship with Him. Pride will keep us from following God and His word. When run to the ultimate end, most sin begins with pride and thinking we know better than God.
So today, examine your heart. See if you’ve allowed pride to become a habit. If you have, just ask God for His help. He can show you what to change and what to do to not let pride rule your life today.
For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life – John 3:16
This verse is one of the most popular verses in the Bible. In fact, it’s used so much, it’s almost easy to read it and take it for granted. We are so used to everyone stating the fact that God loves us that we don’t really let it sink in.
So let’s think about this idea for a bit. God loves you. He doesn’t have to love you. But He does. You never did anything for God, but God went out of His way to love you. He pursued you when you didn’t deserve it. He loved you when you were unlovable.
He did this so that you could enjoy eternal life with Him. You can talk to Him, walk with Him, and enjoy eternity with Him.
So today, let this verse sink in. Don’t just read it and ignore it because you’ve heard it so many times. Instead, choose to think about the fact that God chose you. He chose to love you even when you didn’t deserve it.
It’s just a little white lie. It doesn’t hurt anyone. You’ve probably thought or heard that before. So what’s the big deal about lying? Especially when no one really gets harmed in the process. Isn’t it ok to stretch the truth if it helps yourself out?
The Lord detests lying lips, but he delights in people who are trustworthy. – Proverbs 12:22
This verse gives us a different idea about lying, doesn’t it? It shows us that the Lord detests lying lips. Wow. So maybe a little lie isn’t really not that big of a deal.
Why does it matter if you tell the truth? And why should we as Christians be telling the truth?
Well, first of all, God is truth. The Bible tells us that He can’t lie. And that’s great because when we read something in the Bible, we can just believe it, because we know that God is being totally honest with us. It is God’s nature to tell the truth, and as His followers, we should be doing the same.
Other people around us should be able to count on us to do what we say. If we say we’re going to be somewhere, we should be there. If we say that we’re going to do something, we should do it. As God’s children, we should be imitating Him. He doesn’t lie, and we shouldn’t either.
We should be known as people who tell the truth.
Here’s the good news. If you’ve struggled with lying in the past, there is hope. You can break free of lying because you’ve got God to help you. Go to Him. Ask Him to show you ways that you can break free. Keep taking small steps toward breaking free from lying. You’ll be glad you did!
I will lead the blind by a way they did not know; I will guide them on paths they have not known. I will turn darkness to light in front of them and rough places into level ground. This is what I will do for them, and I will not forsake them. – Isaiah 42:16 (HCSB)
Making decisions about your future can often feel like a scary thing. You might feel all alone, unsure of what decision to make. In the next few years of your life, you have to make many life-altering decisions. Things like who to date, careers and future plans. With all those choices, it’s easy to get overwhelmed.
Making decisions about your future doesn’t have to be an overwhelming task, however. It’s easy to forget in the midst of all those decisions that God has told us He will not forsake us. That’s good news. We don’t have to make these big decisions alone.
We can go to God and ask Him for help. Today’s Bible verse tells us that God will guide us on our paths. That means God wants to show you which path to take. God’s plans for your future are good, so trust Him and go to Him for guidance in your decision-making.
Today’s Truth: God’s plans for your future are good. Get His advice in your decision-making.
Pray:God I thank you that I’m your child. Thank you for not forsaking me. I believe you’re showing me the plans you have for my future. I will trust you and know that when it’s time to make the decision, you’ll show me what to do. In Jesus’ name, Amen.