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Lord, Are You Really Watching Me? –Psalm 11:4


Today’s Scripture Reading: 1 Kings 2:1-9; 2 Samuel 23:1-7; 1 Kings 2:10-12; 1 Chronicles 29:26-30; Psalms 4-6; Psalms 8-9, 11

Heavenly Father, it’s hard for me to fathom David’s statement:

But the Lord is in his holy Temple; the Lord still rules from heaven. He watches everyone closely, examining every person on earth.  —Psalm 11:4

Lord, You see ME?  You see me!  You examine EVERY person on earth.

How do You do that?

God, what do You think when You see me?

It’s hard to grasp the fact that you see ALL of me:  The Good, the bad, the ugly…and You still love me–Amazing!

Lord, I pray that I’m pleasing to You.  I know Your love for me isn’t dependent upon my goodness, but I want my life to honor You.  I hope that when You examine me You see growth.

Father, as you watch me today let me know You are close.  Smile down on my life today.  Lord, I pray that I’m a reflection of You.

In Jesus’ Name.  Amen and Amen!

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller

Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: Psalms 12-17; Psalms 19-21

Lord, I Don’t Want to Be a Fake—2 Samuel 24:22-24

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Today’s Scripture Reading: 2 Samuel 24:1-9, 1 Chronicles 21:1-6, 2 Samuel 24:10-17, 1 Chronicles 21:7-17, 2 Samuel 24:18-25, 1 Chronicles 21:18-22:19

Heavenly Father, David’s heart was always tender toward You. He wanted to be the one who paid the price for the offering. Lord, it doesn’t seem as if You were demanding David make the purchase with his own money. I think David believed gifts only mean something when we purchased them ourselves. His gratitude and love for You demanded that he pay the price.

“Take it, my lord the king, and use it as you wish,” Araunah said to David. “Here are oxen for the burnt offering, and you can use the threshing boards and ox yokes for wood to build a fire on the altar. I will give it all to you, Your Majesty, and may the Lord your God accept your sacrifice.”

But the king replied to Araunah, “No, I insist on buying it, for I will not present burnt offerings to the Lord my God that have cost me nothing.” So David paid him fifty pieces of silver for the threshing floor and the oxen. —2 Samuel 24:22-24

I’ve had times when someone gave a gift and just added my name to the card. It didn’t feel like I have given anything, I really felt like a fake.

I think that’s the way many people feel in churches across America. We go to church and watch the worship leader give his or her gifts. We’re just a spectator but we don’t look like a spectator. We sing along, and sometimes raise our hands but in our heart we feel like a fake.

We’re just going through the motions because we really haven’t brought our own, personal, costly offering. We haven’t drawn a line in the sand and said, “I will not present an offering to the Lord my God that cost me nothing.” Yes, we believe in You but we have given You our own, special, personal gift. Jesus, we haven’t given You our heart.

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Lord, help us not to be a fake worshiper. Help us to worship You from a heart of love and adoration, not out of duty or peer pressure. Help us to have our own, personal and unique worship experience.

Here’s my heart Lord.

In Jesus’ Name. Amen and Amen!

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller
Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: 1 Chronicles 23:1-25:31

Lord, I Look to You for Protection—Psalm 18:30

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Today’s Scripture Reading: 2 Samuel 22:1-51, Psalm 18

Heavenly Father, You amaze me! You are so faithful. Each day I open Your Word, wondering if and hoping that You will show me a truth, something I can share with my fellow travelers. Each day You come through. Today this verse stood out like a neon sign. It wasn’t the whole verse, it was just one phrase.

 

God’s way is perfect.
All the Lord’s promises prove true.
He is a shield for all who look to him for protection. —Psalm 18:30

Lord, this is an amazing promise. You will be a shield, You will protect ALL (Everyone) who look to You for protection. Lord, when I look to this world for protection instead of You, does it tie Your hands? Does it limit Your ability shield me from the trouble in this world? This is one of those instances where it’s seems as if it’s a conditional promise–You have a part and I have a part. With each passing day in this world we live I am feeling less and less protected but Lord You’re right there saying “Dianne, look to Me for protection.”

Jesus, I saw this in action this week. I was taking a walk one morning. I went out of my subdivision and got on the main road. It has a walking/bike path. I’ve walked this road for years and have always felt safe. I reached my halfway point so I turned around and headed home. I was in a section that didn’t have any houses, just woods, Suddenly, I saw this white, work van stop on the opposite side of the road from me about 50 feet ahead.

Immediately, I felt fear rise up. I did all the things I should do to be on the safe side—pulled out my phone, plugged in 911 and had it ready to hit the send button, and got the information off the truck and then I began to pray. I asked You for protection.

Father, what happened next was amazing! I began praying out loud. My prayers became more powerful. I felt a wave of confidence come over me. I KNEW You were going to protect me. As I walked I got more and more demonstrative with my prayer: Hands raise, fingers pointing at that van and saying Jesus, Jesus, and getting louder and louder. I felt so covered in Your protection that I literally believed if this man came toward me he would fall under the power of the presence of God. Did I look weird? Probably. I did care? Nope.

Lord, only You know that man’s intention but after I passed by his van he started the ignition and turned around and went in the opposite direction. You taught me such a powerful lesson:

If I look to You for my protection You will be my shield

Thank You Lord for making Your Word come alive in my life. Thank You for boldness to believe You mean what You say!

In Jesus Name. Amen and Amen!

 

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller
Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: 2 Samuel 24:1-9, 1 Chronicles 21:1-6, 2 Samuel 24:10-17, 1 Chronicles 21:7-17, 2 Samuel 24:18-25, 1 Chronicles 21:18-22:19

Lord, I Don’t Want to Be a Troublemaker—2 Samuel 20:1

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Today’s Scripture Reading: 2 Samuel 19:31-20:26, Psalm 7, 2 Samuel 21:1-22, 1 Chronicles 20:4-8

Heavenly Father, these words jumped off the page at me: There happened to be a troublemaker. 

How terrible to be recognized in Your Word as a troublemaker!

There happened to be a troublemaker there named Sheba son of Bicri, a man from the tribe of Benjamin. Sheba blew a ram’s horn and began to chant:

“Down with the dynasty of David!
We have no interest in the son of Jesse.
Come on, you men of Israel,
back to your homes!” —2 Samuel 20:1

Lord, there have been times in my life when being a troublemaker was my claim to fame. Just like Sheba I made trouble with my mouth. It’s always been a challenge. It was so bad when I was in my 30s that the Holy Spirit felt I needed a scripture song to remind me to keep my mouth shut unless it met the following criteria:

And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise. Keep putting into practice all you learned and received from me—everything you heard from me and saw me doing. Then the God of peace will be with you. —Philippians 4:8-9

These verses were set to music and I heard them over and over in my head. It was so convicting that I had to keep myself completely away from some of my friends because I couldn’t control my mouth when I was around them. I’m sad to admit this, but it’s true.

Lord, I don’t want to allow the sin of gossip to creep into my life. I realize that an emotion that feeds gossip is jealousy.  I actually had this happen yesterday and felt emotions, entertained thoughts, and made comments that were traits of a troublemaker.

Jesus, thank You for Your Word. Thank You for convicting me quickly. Forgive me and help me to go straight to You when feelings of jealousy creep into my life.

Lord, help me to remember this formula:  Jealousy + gossip = a full-fledged troublemaker

In Jesus Name. Amen and Amen!

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller

Tomorrow’s  Scripture Reading: 2 Samuel 22:1-51, Psalm 18

Oh God, You are My God—Psalm 63

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Today’s Scripture Reading: 2 Samuel 17:15-29, Psalm 3, Psalm 63, 2 Samuel 18:1-19:30

Heavenly Father, everyday I hear people calling on You and many of them don’t even know You. OMG (Oh My God) is used by the world as a texting abbreviation. It’s so sad. Today’s world is using Your Name, calling out to You in one breath and cursing You in the next breath.

Lord, forgive me for using Your Name as a filler word or trendy phrase. It is a privilege to call out to You. Accept the words of King David as my prayer today.

 

 

O God, you are my God;
I earnestly search for you.

My soul thirsts for you;
my whole body longs for you
in this parched and weary land
where there is no water.

I have seen you in your sanctuary
and gazed upon your power and glory.
Your unfailing love is better than life itself;
how I praise you!

I will praise you as long as I live,
lifting up my hands to you in prayer.

You satisfy me more than the richest feast.
I will praise you with songs of joy.

I lie awake thinking of you,
meditating on you through the night.

Because you are my helper,
I sing for joy in the shadow of your wings.
I cling to you;
your strong right hand holds me securely.

But those plotting to destroy me will come to ruin.
They will go down into the depths of the earth.
They will die by the sword
and become the food of jackals.

But the king will rejoice in God.
All who trust in him will praise him,
while liars will be silenced.

–Psalm 63

 

In Jesus’ Name. Amen and Amen!

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller
Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: 2 Samuel 19:31-20:26, Psalm 7, 2 Samuel 21:1-22, 1 Chronicles 20:4-8

Lord, Do What Seems Best–2 Samuel 15:26

Today’s Scripture Reading: 2 Samuel 15:1-17:14

Heavenly Father, here’s another example of David’s amazing heart.  His son has worked a four year plan to steal the throne from him.  Now David’s running for his life and these are his words to Zadok, the priest…

Then the king instructed Zadok to take the Ark of God back into the city. “If the Lord sees fit,” David said, “he will bring me back to see the Ark and the Tabernacle again. But if he is through with me, then let him do what seems best to him.”  –2 Samuel 15:25-26

Lord, this kind of trust is my desire…

  •  If You see fit
  • Do what seems best to You

Jesus, it sounds like Your words:

“Father, if you are willing, please take this cup of suffering away from me. Yet I want your will to be done, not mine.”   –Luke 22:42

Father, thank You for the example of David.  Thank You for the example of Your Son.  As this day begins, my prayer is that You do what seems best for my life and Your Kingdom.

Lord, You can be trusted.  You are our hope!

In Your Name we pray.  Amen and Amen!

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller

Tomorrow’s Devotion: 2 Samuel 17:15-29; Psalm 3; Psalm 63; 2 Samuel 18:1-19:30

Lord, Thank You For Observant Friends–2 Samuel 14:1

Today’s Scripture Reading: 2 Samuel 12:26-31; 1 Chronicles 20:2-3; 2 Samuel 13:1-14:33

Heavenly Father, I’m not sure that King David and Joab were friends, but Joab definitely acted like a friend in today’s story.

Joab realized how much the king longed to see Absalom. So he sent for a woman from Tekoa who had a reputation for great wisdom. He said to her, “Pretend you are in mourning; wear mourning clothes and don’t put on lotions. Act like a woman who has been mourning for the dead for a long time.  Then go to the king and tell him the story I am about to tell you.” Then Joab told her what to say.  —2 Samuel 14:1-3

Lord, we all have times in our lives when we need someone to help us get our head on straight.  Sometimes we’re just too close to the situation, we truly “can’t see the forest for the trees.”

Jesus, thank you for using my friends to encourage, challenge, trouble-shoot, counsel and correct.  Lord, help me to be that kind of friend.  Give me the grace and mercy to be a friend that builds others up, always.  Teach me to “speak the truth in love” (Ephesians 4:15) to my friends AND family.

Lord, help me to be a “Joab” kind of friend to someone today!

In Jesus’ Name.  Amen and Amen!

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller

Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: 2 Samuel 15:1-17:14

Lord, Give Me Back My Joy–Psalm 51:8


Today’s Scripture Reading: 1 Chronicles 20:1; 2 Samuel 11:1-12:14; Psalm 51; 2 Samuel 12:15-25; 2 Samuel 5:14-16; 1 Chronicles 14:3-7; 1 Chronicles 3:5-9

Heavenly Father, the joy that comes when we know that all is well in our relationship with You is something nothing else in this world can replace.  David knew this joy, but in today’s reading it was gone.  Sin was standing between David and his God.

Lord, thank you for inspiring David to write Psalm 51.  Through his mistakes and repentance, You taught us how to pour our hearts out to You when we sin.  Through David You taught us how to get our joy back.

Purify me from my sins, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.
Oh,
give me back my joy again; you have broken me—now let me rejoice.

Don’t keep looking at my sins. Remove the stain of my guilt.
Create in me a clean heart, O God. Renew a loyal spirit within me.
Do not banish me from your presence, and don’t take your Holy Spirit from me.

Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and make me willing to obey you. —Psalm 51: 7-12

Lord, I know there are friends reading these words whose joy is gone because of someone else’s sin, or just the struggles of day-to-day life.  Holy Spirit, help them to know that the instructions are the same…

When we lose our joy, go to God and ask Him to restore our joy…

ask Him to rebuild our heart…

ask Him to forgive us of our bitterness and renew the right spirit within us.

 

Father, we rejoice in the joy of our salvation today!

In Jesus’ Name.  Amen and Amen!

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller

Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: 2 Samuel 12:26-31; 1 Chronicles 20:2-3; 2 Samuel 13:1-14:33

Lord, Was This David’s Defining Moment ? —2 Samuel 10:7

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Today’s Scripture Reading: 2 Samuel 8:15-18, 1 Chronicles 18:14-17, 1 Chronicles 6:16-30, 50-53, 31-48, 2 Samuel 9:1-10:19, 1 Chronicles 19:1-19

Heavenly Father, I saw something in today’s reading that has me saying,

“Oh my!”

Today was the last day of reading before David sins with Bathsheba (yes, I turned the page). I love the story of David but dread getting to the part about Bathsheba. David’s my hero. He was amazing handling Saul and his enemies while remaining kind and humble. I don’t want to watch him fall.

In today’s reading David was still the hero riding in on his chariot to save the day. He was saving the honor of his men and responding to a threat by neighboring countries but something was missing.

When David heard about this, he sent Joab and all his warriors to fight them. —2 Samuel 10:7

Lord, the only reason I noticed this missing piece is because this year as I’ve read David’s story a particular phrase has jumped off the page in neon colors many times.

The Philistines arrived and spread out across the valley of Rephaim. So David asked the Lord, “Should I go out to fight the Philistines? Will you hand them over to me?”

The Lord replied to David, “Yes, go ahead. I will certainly hand them over to you.” —2 Samuel 5:18-19

I didn’t go back and research this but I’m pretty sure that every time up until this point David asked, “Lord, should I go out to fight.”

Lord, this time David didn’t ask You. He made a snap decision and moved forward with HIS plans. Yes, David and the Israelites won the battle but I wonder if this was the defining moment when David decided he was now powerful enough, wise enough, and smart enough to call the shots. In tomorrow’s reading he chooses to stay home from battle. I don’t think he asked You about that either.

Jesus, the minute I saw this all I could say was “Oh me!” I do the same thing. I move forward with my plans without thinking about asking You. Sometimes I do ask but I don’t wait for an answer. Lord, over the years I have made some big mistakes because I thought I could handle it by myself.

David’s pride, my pride. It’s all the same.

Lord, forgive me for doing life MY way. Holy Spirit, teach me, remind me to ask should I go (do, fight, say yes, etc) and then help me to wait for Your answer.

In Jesus Name. Amen and Amen!

 

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller
Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: 1 Chronicles 20:1, 2 Samuel 11:1-12:14, Psalm 51, 2 Samuel 12:15-25, 2 Samuel 5:14-16, 1 Chronicles 14:3-7, 1 Chronicles 3:5-9

Lord, You Know What I Am Really Like—2 Samuel 7:20

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Today’s Scripture Reading: 2 Samuel 7:1-17, 1 Chronicles 17:1-15, 2 Samuel 7:18-29, 1 Chronicles 17:16-27, 2 Samuel 8:1-14, 1 Chronicles 18:1-13, Psalm 60

Heavenly Father, it’s no wonder you loved David’s heart (Acts 13:22).  Your Word tells us that the feelings in our heart flow out of our mouth (Luke 6:45). David was so good at putting his feelings into words.

 

Then King David went in and sat before the Lord and prayed,

“Who am I, O Sovereign Lord, and what is my family, that you have brought me this far? And now, Sovereign Lord, in addition to everything else, you speak of giving your servant a lasting dynasty! Do you deal with everyone this way, O Sovereign Lord?

“What more can I say to you? You know what your servant is really like, Sovereign Lord.2 Samuel 7:18-20

Lord, we have so many versions of ourselves we even sometimes get confused. We have the version strangers see, the version coworkers see, the version our church family sees, the version our family sees, and the version nobody sees but You.

Lord, only You know what I’m really like.

Jesus, help us to realize You know it all–our thoughts, our attitudes, our ego issues, our selfishness, our hidden anger, resentment and bitterness—You know how much we think and care about You.

 

AND, YOU STILL LOVE, ACCEPT AND FORGIVE US!

 

That’s just amazing!

Lord, help me to spend time being real with You today. Change me and make me into the person You want me to be!

 

In Jesus Name. Amen and Amen!

 

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller
Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: 2 Samuel 8:15-18, 1 Chronicles 18:14-17, 1 Chronicles 6:16-30, 50-53, 31-48, 2 Samuel 9:1-10:19, 1 Chronicles 19:1-19

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