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Spirit of the Lord, Come Upon Me—2 Chronicles 20:14

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Today’s Scripture Reading: 1 Kings 22:10-28, 2 Chronicles 18:9-27, 1 Kings 22:29-35, 2 Chronicles 18:28-34, 1 Kings 22:36-40, 51-53, 2 Chronicles 19:1-20:30

Heavenly Father, this is such an amazing story of Your supernatural power. It’s also a great example of the way You use individuals to change a situation.

O our God, won’t you stop them? We are powerless against this mighty army that is about to attack us. We do not know what to do, but we are looking to you for help.”

As all the men of Judah stood before the Lord with their little ones, wives, and children, the Spirit of the Lord came upon one of the men standing there. His name was Jahaziel son of Zechariah, son of Benaiah, son of Jeiel, son of Mattaniah, a Levite who was a descendant of Asaph.

He said, “Listen, all you people of Judah and Jerusalem! Listen, King Jehoshaphat! This is what the Lord says: Do not be afraid! Don’t be discouraged by this mighty army, for the battle is not yours, but God’s. Tomorrow, march out against them. You will find them coming up through the ascent of Ziz at the end of the valley that opens into the wilderness of Jeruel.  But you will not even need to fight. Take your positions; then stand still and watch the Lord’s victory. He is with you, O people of Judah and Jerusalem. Do not be afraid or discouraged. Go out against them tomorrow, for the Lord is with you!”  —2 Chronicles 20:12-17

Lord, I know that Jahaziel’s experience wasn’t the norm in those days. Your Spirit only came upon people in rare instances. This was long before Jesus came to earth, died, ascended to heaven, and left us with The Comforter, Your Holy Spirit. I think we sometimes forget that if we have accepted You as our Lord and Savior Your Spirit lives within us.

Jahaziel’s words changed the mood in an instant! King Jehoshapat and the people of Judah went from being terrified and discouraged to bowing in awe, praising You and shouting as loud as they could. After Jahaziel’s message King Jehoshaphat confidently challenged all the people to believe in You and to stand firm. He even appointed singers to lead the army.

Wow! What a difference a few anointed words of encouragement can make!

Jesus, our words can also change the mood in an instant. Lord, I pray that You will prompt me daily to speak words of encouragement, hope, and inspiration into the lives of everyone You put in my life. Spirit of The Lord, come upon me. I want to be Your messenger.

In Jesus Name. Amen and Amen!

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller
Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: 2 Kings 1:1-18, 2 Kings 3:1-27, 1 Kings 22:41-49, 2 Chronicles 20:31-37, 1 Kings 22:50, 2 Chronicles 21:1-4

Lord, Help Me to Know That You Are the Lord, MY God—1 Kings 20:13

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Today’s Scripture Reading: 1 Kings 20:23-22:9, 2 Chronicles 18:1-8

Heavenly Father, it is my desire to know, r-e-a-l-l-y know that You are the Lord of my life.

 Then a certain prophet came to see King Ahab of Israel and told him, “This is what the Lord says: Do you see all these enemy forces? Today I will hand them all over to you. Then you will know that I am the Lord.” —1 Kings 20:13

I know there is always a struggle  between MY desire to be Lord and my desire for You to by my Lord. Sometimes I struggle because Your way is the hard way and I want the easy way. Frankly, I’m sick and tired of  the battles of life.

But…

If there is no battle, there can be no victory. Lord, as I look back on my life I realize there are two, very different scenarios that have caused me to ‘know that You are the Lord MY God:”

1. During the heat of the battle when I was wallowing in the depths of despair and realized You were so close I could almost feel You touching me.

2. During times of victory. Lord, You and I have a history. Over and over I’ve faced impossible situations and You have fought for me. Many times the battles were within me but all the battles were overwhelming and stacked against me. Our history of fighting together and winning together makes my relationship with You stronger than any human relationship.

Lord, thank You for reminding me that the added benefit of  fighting through the battles of life is seeing You supernaturally fight for me, it’s knowing that You are My God. You’re not just Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob’s God. You’re not just Paul, Peter and John’s God. You’re not just the preacher’s God or my parent’s God.

You. Are. My. God.

Jesus, I Love You.

Amen and Amen!

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller
Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: 1 Kings 22:10-28, 2 Chronicles 18:9-27, 1 Kings 22:29-35, 2 Chronicles 18:28-34, 1 Kings 22:36-40, 51-53, 2 Chronicles 19:1-20:30

Lord, I Need Your Special Strength–1 Kings 18:46

Today’s Scripture Reading: 1 Kings 15:16-22; 2 Chronicles 16:1-10; 1 Kings 16:1-34; 1 Kings 15:23-24; 2 Chronicles 16:11-17:19; 1 Kings 17:1-7

Heavenly Father, when I read the story of Elijah, I long to see the kind of miracles he saw.  I’m amazed at Elijah’s physical and mental strength, but I’m most amazed by his faith.  He didn’t just believe, He acted on what he believed.

What faith it took for Elijah to call all the Israelites together and challenge the Baal worshipers to a “worship war.” (1 Kings 18:19-24)

Elijah also challenged the Israelites to get off the fence:

Then Elijah stood in front of them and said, “How much longer will you waver, hobbling between two opinions? If the Lord is God, follow him! But if Baal is God, then follow him!” But the people were completely silent.  –1 Kings 18:46

Lord, help us today to stop “hobbling between two opinions.”  Help us to follow You with our whole heart.

Jesus, give us Your special strength.  Allow us to be a part of the miracles You are doing today.  Lord, when we begin to waver, come along side us and remind us of Your plans, Your Kingdom, and Your power.

In Jesus’ Name.  Amen and Amen!

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller

Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: 1 Kings 20:23-22:9; 2 Chronicles 18:1-8

Lord, I Don’t Want to Miss My Chance–2 Chronicles 16:7


Today’s Scripture Reading: 1 Kings 15:16-22; 2 Chronicles 16:1-10; 1 Kings 16:1-34; 1 Kings 15:23-24; 2 Chronicles 16:11-17:19; 1 Kings 17:1-7

Heavenly Father, today’s reading is a clear reminder that misplaced trust can completely change the outcome of our lives.

At that time Hanani the seer came to King Asa and told him, “Because you have put your trust in the king of Aram instead of in the Lord your God, you missed your chance to destroy the army of the king of Aram. 

Don’t you remember what happened to the Ethiopians and Libyans and their vast army, with all of their chariots and charioteers? At that time you relied on the Lord, and he handed them over to you.  The eyes of the Lord search the whole earth in order to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him. What a fool you have been! From now on you will be at war.” — 2 Chronicles 16:7-9

Lord, I don’t want to miss my chance to make a difference in this world and Your Kingdom.  I want to be someone who relies on You, not leaders, popular opinion, or the latest fad or craze. I want to be fully committed to You Lord.

Lord, strengthen my heart for Your Plans.  Make Your will clear.

In Jesus’ Name.  Amen and Amen!

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller

Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: 1 Kings 15:16-22; 2 Chronicles 16:1-10; 1 Kings 16:1-34; 1 Kings 15:23-24; 2 Chronicles 16:11-17:19; 1 Kings 17:1-7

Lord, I Don’t Want to be Strong—2 Chronicles 12:1

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Today’s Scripture Reading: 1 Kings 13:1-14:24; 2 Chronicles 12:13-14; 2 Chronicles 11:18-23; 2 Chronicles 12:1-12; 1 Kings 14:25-28; 2 Chronicles 12:15-16; 1 Kings 14:29-15:5; 2 Chronicles 13:1-22; 1 Kings 15:6-8; 2 Chronicles 14:1-8; 1 Kings 15:9-15; 1 Kings 14:19-20; 1 Kings 15:25-34; 2 Chronicles 14:9-15:19

Heavenly Father, the last couple of years have been a time of struggle and weakness. Most people consider me to be a strong woman of faith. That has been my desire but this season has required a depth of trust that I do not have.  You’ve known that all along. You’ve told me many times, “Dianne, this trial is too big and You are too weak to handle it. You have to let it go and trust Me to handle it.”  I’ve considered this a dark time in my spiritual life, a time where I’ve failed You over and over. I keep waiting for “my” strength to kick in, like a double shot of espresso.

As I read these words I thought, “Lord, I don’t want to be established and strong if it causes me to abandon You.”

But when Rehoboam was firmly established and strong, he abandoned the Law of the Lord, and all Israel followed

him in this sin. —2 Chronicles 12:1

Rehoboam thought “he” established himself. He thought “he” was strong. He thought “he” made it happen.

In today’s Christian world, it seems negative and unspiritual to boast in our weaknesses. Many Christian leaders think we’re supposed to wait until the trial is over and then write a book about how You brought us through our difficult season but we’re not to talk about it when we’re in the midst of it—it shows a lack of faith, trust and a lack of leadership. Well Lord. I have a lack of faith, trust, and I’m not sure anyone should follow me.

Each time he said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me. —2 Corinthians 12:9

Lord, I say with Paul, the only reason I’m in the vertical position is because of Your grace. I am weak. Show Your power in my life.

Lord, I know that my faith, trust, and strength are developed in the trials of life. When I come to the end of this season I pray that I don’t abandon You. Let me use the lessons learned during this difficult season to cause others to know You more.

In Jesus Name. Amen and Amen.

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller

Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: 1 Kings 15:16-22, 2 Chronicles 16:1-10, 1 Kings 16:1-34, 1 Kings 15:23-24, 2 Chronicles 16:11-17:19, 1 Kings 17:1-7

Lord, Help Me to Remember Solomon’s Final Words–Ecclesiastes 12:13-14


Today’s Scripture Reading: Ecclesiastes 11:7-12:14, 1 Kings 12:1-20; 2 Chronicles 10:1-19; 1 Kings 12:21-24; 2 Chronicles 11:1-4; 1 Kings 12:25-33; 2 Chronicles 11:5-17

Heavenly Father, Solomon’s last words sound like something I should have framed on my wall:

That’s the whole story. Here now is my final conclusion: Fear God and obey his commands, for this is everyone’s duty. God will judge us for everything we do, including every secret thing, whether good or bad.  –Ecclesiastes 12:13-14

  •  Fear God
  • Obey His commands
  • It’s everyone’s duty
  • God will judge us for everything we do

Holy Spirit make this personal for me.  Remind me of these words.  Lord, I want to fear You and obey You.  Help me.

In Jesus’ Name.  Amen and Amen!

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller

Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: 1 Kings 13:1-14:24; 2 Chronicles 12:13-14; 2 Chronicles 11:18-23; 2 Chronicles 12:1-12; 1 Kings 14:25-28; 2 Chronicles 12:15-16; 1 Kings 14:29-15:5; 2 Chronicles 13:1-22; 1 Kings 15:6-8; 2 Chronicles 14:1-8; 1 Kings 15:9-15; 1 Kings 14:19-20; 1 Kings 15:25-34; 2 Chronicles 14:9-15:19

Lord, Help Us Find the Time and a Way to Do What is Right–Ecclesiastes 8:5-6

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Today’s Scripture Reading: Ecclesiastes 7:1-11:6

Heavenly Father, the state of our world must make You so sad.  Have we as a society completely lost our way?

Those who are wise will find a time and a way to do what is right… —Ecclesiastes 8:5-6

Where are the wise people who find a time and a way to do what’s right?

This past week, I had an experience that really troubled me. I was assisting my mom with a legal matter. I had talked with my her the night before and ask her if she had informed the family of the person we would be confronting the next day. She said she hadn’t. We talked about it and decided it was the right thing to do, so she contacted the family. When we got to the attorney’s office yesterday and told him there was a change in plans because this person’s family wanted to be involved he said in a tone that added “stupid” to the end of the question, “why did you do that?” I told him because it was the right thing to do and we decided that we would not want to be treated that way so we handled the situation by applying the Golden Rule (Matthew 7:12)  He did not like it. He felt we had caused a simple situation to be complicated and caused it to take way too much time. To his surprise everything worked out better and quicker that he had originally planned.*

*Some details were changed changed in this scenario to provide anonymity 

Yes, it was within the boundaries of the law to handle the situation the way the attorney suggested, yes it appeared to be easier to do it the attorney’s way, but it wasn’t right.

Jesus, doing what is right gets harder everyday. The only way we can live a victorious Christian Life is through constant communication with You, through prayer and Bible study. Holy Spirit, help us to do the right things in the small things so that we can stand strong when the big decisions arise. Yesterday, proved that our only true counselor is the Holy Spirit.

Lord, help us to make Your way, our way!  The enemy of our soul works tirelessly to keep us so busy that we don’t have time to do what’s right–we’re always cutting corners, sliding by, looking for the easy way out…

Holy Spirit, speak loudly.  Speak clearly.  Convict us of our sins.  Help us to turn from our wicked ways. Help us to find the time and make a way to do what’s right!

In Jesus’ Name.  Amen and Amen!

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller

Tomorrow’s Devotions: Ecclesiastes 11:7-12:14, 1 Kings 12:1-20; 2 Chronicles 10:1-19; 1 Kings 12:21-24; 2 Chronicles 11:1-4; 1 Kings 12:25-33; 2 Chronicles 11:5-17

Lord, My Motivation for the Good Life has been Wrong—Ecclesiastes 2:24

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Today’s Scripture Reading: Ecclesiastes 1:12-6:12

Heavenly Father, the older I get the more I understand Ecclesiastes. I used to think this was one of the most depressing books of the Bible but now I see it as a book that has as much wisdom as Proverbs. Solomon had it all, did it all and owned it all. From the beginning he was driven to succeed, very goal oriented and never settled for less than his high expectations.

Here’s what he says about success during the later years of his life:

Then I observed that most people are motivated to success because they envy their neighbors. But this, too, is meaningless—like chasing the wind. —Ecclesiastes 4:4

Lord, in our 20s, 30, and 40s most of us would never admit that our motivation for success is to be like our neighbors. Now that I’m in my late 50s I will confess that more than likely that was my motivation for most of my life. In today’s world it’s even worse. We are tempted, stimulated and manipulated by the media and advertising from the time we are born (how many 3 year olds know what McDonald’s looks like?), so we don’t just envy our neighbors we envy advertisements, air-brushed people on magazine covers, celebrities, movie characters, and our social media friends’ pretend lives.

Solomon, the wisest man in the Bible got caught up in the success myth so we’re in good company, right? Here, I go again Lord, using the mistakes of people in Your Word to make me feel better about myself. While it does give me comfort, the purpose of Your Word is for us to learn from the mistakes of others, not feel better about our poor attitudes, desires, and choices.

From everything Solomon experienced this is what’s on his mind in his golden years:

So I decided there is nothing better than to enjoy food and drink and to find satisfaction in work. Then I realized that these pleasures are from the hand of God. —Ecclesiastes 2:24

Lord, help me to enjoy each day’s work, food, and drink. Help me and my friends who are striving for “the good life” to stop striving and just enjoy the simple pleasures You provide. Forgive us for envying the lives of our neighbors, both the real and pretend ones.

In Jesus name. Amen and Amen!

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller
Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: Ecclesiastes 7:1-11:6

Lord, Help Me to Learn From the Mistakes of Solomon—1 Kings 11: 9-10

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Today’s Scripture Reading: 1 Kings 11-43, 2 Chronicles 9:29-31, Ecclesiastes 1:1-11

Heavenly Father, it’s sad that Solomon, the wisest man in the Bible, who through Proverbs shared so many nuggets of wisdom is now teaching us by his mistakes.

The Lord was very angry with Solomon, for his heart had turned away from the Lord, the God of Israel, who had appeared to him twice.  He had warned Solomon specifically about worshiping other gods, but Solomon did not listen to the Lord’s command.  —1 Kings 11:9-10

Lord, I’ve always thought that Solomon’s ridiculous number of wives (700 wives, 300 concubines) were a sign that he was some kind of sex addict but I saw something in my commentary that made me think that sexual pleasure wasn’t all that was on Solomon’s mind.

Solomon made a practice of marrying foreign women to solidify political alliances, in spite of Gods clear instructions that the king of Israel should not do this. As a result, Solomon began to add the religious practices of these foreign wives to his worship of the Lord.  “Chronological Life Application Study Bible,” Tyndale House Publishers

Father, I think I get it. Power was Solomon’s issue. These women were his ticket to growing his name and influence throughout the world. I’m sure his chest got pretty puffed up when it was known throughout the land that he was “man enough” to have this many women in his life.

If we drill down past Solomon’s power problem we see that pride is at the root of his downfall.

Lord, I know pride has been the source of many of the tough times I’ve experienced. It has been the ruin of many. It’s ironic that Solomon wrote this Proverb.

All who fear the LORD will hate evil. Therefore, I hate pride and arrogance, corruption and perverse speech. —Proverbs 8:13

Lord, continue to expose pride in my life. Help me to be teachable and repent quickly from this sin that destroyed Solomon, the wisest man in the Bible.

In Jesus Name. Amen and Amen!

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller
Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: Ecclesiastes 1:12-6:12

Lord, Help Love Not to be Awakened Until the Time is Right–Song of Solomon 3:5

Today’s Scripture Reading: Song of Solomon 1:1-8:14

Heavenly Father, this scripture jumped off the page at me:

Promise me, O women of Jerusalem, by the gazelles and wild deer, not to awaken love until the time is right.  —Song of Solomon 3:5

Lord, I remember having a conversation with my granddaughter several years ago when she was eleven-years-old.  She was telling me that one of her friends (also eleven) had a date last night.  I would say that is awakening love too soon.

Father, I also see people everyday whose marriage beds are barely cold from their former spouses; divorces not even final and they’re engaged to be married to someone else.  I would say that is awakening love too soon.

Jesus, believe me I’ve made both of these mistakes so I’m not judging others.  I began dating my first husband at the ripe old age of 15,  got married at 18 and then found myself divorced at 40; wanting to find someone to really love me and rushing God’s plan and God’s timing. My heart breaks for my friends who are walking through the pain of these situations.  They just wanted true love.  It felt so right.

Lord, help us to look to You for guidance.  Help us to put up boundaries for our sons, daughters, and ourselves to avoid awakening love too soon.

Holy Spirit, speak louder than the world.

In Jesus’ Name.  Amen and Amen!

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller

Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: 1 Kings 11:1-43; 2 Chronicles 9:29-31; Ecclesiastes 1:1-11

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