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Lord, I Want to Make the Most of Every Opportunity—Ephesians 5:15-20

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Today’s Scripture Reading: Ephesians 5:15-6:24, Colossians 1:1-23

Heavenly Father, will I live to see the day when I can’t speak Your Son’s name in public?

So be careful how you live. Don’t live like fools, but like those who are wise. Make the most of every opportunity in these evil days. Don’t act thoughtlessly, but understand what the Lord wants you to do. Don’t be drunk with wine, because that will ruin your life. Instead, be filled with the Holy Spirit, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs among yourselves, and making music to the Lord in your hearts. And give thanks for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. —Ephesians 5:15-20

Lord, I want to be wise. I don’t want to waste my time on earth. I want to make the most of every opportunity. Holy Spirit, fill me and use me to help someone know You more today.

Thank You for the opportunities You are sending my way! May I live for the glory of Your Name!

 

Amen and Amen!

 

 

 

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller

Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: Colossians 1:24-4:18

Lord, The Sun’s Down and I’m Still Angry. What Do I Do? —Ephesians 4:26

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Today’s Scripture Reading: Ephesians 3:1-5:14

Heavenly Father, I’ve learned a lot about anger this year. There have been some nights when I went to bed angry and as You predicted through the Apostle Paul, anger gave Satan a foothold in my life.

And “don’t sin by letting anger control you. ”Don’t let the sun go down while you are still angry, for anger gives a foothold to the devil. –Ephesians 4:26-27

Lord, thankfully I’ve moved past the anger and have learned some great lessons but it would have been much simpler if I would have turned it completely over to You before the sun went down.

Because I allowed anger to marinate, I gave Satan access to my mind. I was miserable. I knew I needed to forgive, yet something was holding me back; or should I say someone.

Lord, I believe You, the God who made me, answered my prayer and showed my how to fight this anger virus I had allowed to corrupt my thinking.

I sensed You saying that aggressive action was required to take back the foothold I had given to Satan.

I’m a person who loves solitude and silence. I can stay in my home for eight hours with no television or music—just silence, and be totally happy. Holy Spirit, I believe You told me that silence wasn’t good for me in this season. These were the instructions you gave me:

No silence allowed! Other than my morning quiet time, I was to have either Christian podcasts, Christian music, or Christian books going in my head every waking moment.

This doesn’t mean that I can only listen to Christian music forever, it means desperate tines call for desperate measures. I had to take back the ground I have given to my enemy. It was war but You taught me how to fight differently.

We are human, but we don’t wage war as humans do. We use God’s mighty weapons, not worldly weapons, to knock down the strongholds of human reasoning and to destroy false arguments. We destroy every proud obstacle that keeps people from knowing God. We capture their rebellious thoughts and teach them to obey Christ. –1 Corinthians 10:3-5

Jesus, I definitely had strongholds of human reasoning, false arguments, and rebellious thoughts. Saturating my mind with Your Word was re-teaching me to hear, obey, and submit to You. The second part of this assignment was capturing every thought that fueled the anger and replacing with Your Word.

Lord, I immediately made this change. I’m amazed how quickly the heaviness lifted. In a matter of days I felt the anger and hurt disappear. I am completely free from the anger and very grateful!

The thing I will never forget about this difficult season is the way You stayed so close to me. I know You didn’t approve of my lingering anger but You were with me in an unusual way. I even felt You speak to my spirit, “I understand. I get angry too. You will get through this and I will not leave you.”

Lord, thank You for never abandoning me! Thank You for going ahead of me and leading me through this difficult season.

 

So be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid and do not panic before them. For the Lord your God will personally go ahead of you. He will neither fail you nor abandon you.” —Deuteronomy 31:6

I love You!

Amen and Amen!

 

 

 

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller

 

 

Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: Ephesians 5:15-6:24, Colossians 1:1-23

Lord, After All These Years, I’m Still in Awe—Ephesians 2:8-10

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Today’s Scripture Reading: Acts 28:1-31, Ephesians 1:1-2:22

Heavenly Father, as I read Ephesians 2, it was like reading it for the first time. The whole chapter oozes with Your love but these verses grabbed my attention:

God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God.  Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it. For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago. —Ephesians 2:8-10

Lord, You’re right, I can’t take credit for this gift. I don’t deserve it.

Father, Your loving kindness is like the most beautiful gift wrapping I’ve ever imagined.

He is so rich in kindness and grace that he purchased our freedom with the blood of his Son and forgave our sins. He has showered his kindness on us, along with all wisdom and understanding. —Ephesians 1:7-8

Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, thank You for the gift of eternal life!

In Jesus Name. Amen and Amen!

 

 

 

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller

 

Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: Ephesians 3:1-5:14

Lord, Today There’s Gonna Be a Fight—John 19:11

 

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Today’s Scripture Reading: Mark 15:2-5, Matthew 27:11-14, Luke 23:1-12, John 18:28-40, Mark 15:6-15, Matthew 27:15-26, Luke 23:13-25, John 19:1-16, Mark 15:16-20, Matthew 27:27-31, Luke 22:63-65

Jesus, as I read the details of Your arrest and trial I kept thinking, “this was senseless and crazy!” “How did things deteriorate so quickly?” “One minute everyone’s singing Your praises and the next minute they’re yelling ‘crucify You!'”

This explains it.

Then Jesus said, “You would have no power over me at all unless it were given to you from above. So the one who handed me over to you has the greater sin.” —John 19:11

It was Your plan. It was Your time. It was Your will.

There was a fight going on.

Holy Spirit, some days I wish I could see into the unseen world Paul talks about:

For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places. —Ephesians 6:12

Lord, yes it can be scary to think about “mighty powers in this dark world,” but You said, “You would have no power over me at all unless it were given to you from above.”

Lord, You are in control. You win. Your followers win. I win!

But…

In this world there will be a fight…

I’m so thankful I’m on the winning team!

Lord, give me eyes to see the “real battles.” Teach me how to fight!

Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere. —Ephesians 6:18

In Jesus Name. Amen and Amen!

 

 

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller
 
 

 

Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: Mark 15:21-24, Matthew 27:32-34, Luke 23:26-31, John 19:17, Mark 15:25-32, Matthew 27:35-44, Luke 23:32-43. John 19:18-27, Mark 15:33-41, Matthew 27:45-56, Luke 23:44-49, John 19:28-37

Lord, Give Me Strength to Escape and Stand—Luke 21:34-36

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Today’s Scripture Reading: Mark 13:32-37, Matthew 24:36-51, Luke 21:34-38, Matthew 25:1-46

Heavenly Father, for months I have been in a season where my heart has been dulled, not by carousing and drunkenness, but by the worries of life.

Watch out! Don’t let your hearts be dulled by carousing and drunkenness, and by the worries of this life. Don’t let that day catch you unaware, like a trap. For that day will come upon everyone living on the earth. Keep alert at all times. And pray that you might be strong enough to escape these coming horrors and stand before the Son of Man.” —Luke 21:34-36

Lord, the circumstances haven’t changed. In the natural realm things look pretty bleak but I’ve changed. This past Sunday at Niceville Assembly You removed the scales from my eyes and allowed me to see my circumstances for what they truly are, the enemy of my soul’s attempt to steal the destiny of my family. It’s almost as if I was Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz and You pulled back the curtain and let me see that all the destruction that is happening is just smoke and mirrors. It’s the evil wizard’s attempt to deceive and keep me paralyzed, to keep me from using the mighty power afforded to every Christ follower.

A final word: Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil. For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.   —Ephesian 6:10-12

Lord, last night these words came out of my mouth to a friend and I immediately knew they weren’t my words but Your words:

We are the church! We aren’t supposed to stand by and let the enemy win.

The fight isn’t with people, politicians, social agendas, countries, or terrorist organizations. The fight is with the enemy of our soul, whose desire is to destroy us physically, emotionally, and spiritually. As Christie Love, the founder of LeadHer, an international women’s ministry says in an upcoming teaching on spiritual warfare, “God gives us two offensive weapons: The Word of God and prayer.” Lord, teach me how to us Your Word and prayer to fight our real enemy!

Holy Spirit, continuously walk me through these steps so that I can escape the strategies of the devil and stand strong in the coming days.

1. Watch out

2. Guard my heart

3. Watch for traps

4. Keep Alert

5. Pray for strength to escape and stand

 

Lord, thank You for Your Word! Help me to guard my heart!

Amen and Amen!

 

 

 

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller
 
Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: Mark 14:1-2, Matthew 26:1-5, Luke 22:1-2, Mark 14:1o-11, Matthew 26:14-16, Luke 22:3-6, Mark 14:12-16, Matthew 26:17-19, Luke 22:7-13, John 13:1-17, Mark 14:17-26, Matthew 26:20-30, Luke 22:14-30, John 13:18-30

Lord, You Have Only Begun to Show me Your Greatness—Deuteronomy 3:24

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Today’s Scripture Reading: Deuteronomy 3:21-5:33

Heavenly Father, I can’t begin to count the number of times I’ve heard and sang along with Chris Tomlin’s song, “How Great is Our God.” When I read Your Word I often say, Lord, You are great! I’ve seen Your greatness displayed in my 50-plus years on this earth many times but I’ve certainly never been eye-witness to Your greatness like Moses. Yet, Moses says “You have only just begun!”

 ‘O Sovereign Lord, you have only begun to show your greatness and the strength of your hand to me, your servant. Is there any god in heaven or on earth who can perform such great and mighty deeds as you do?  —Numbers 3:24

Lord, in these difficult days thinking about the future can be scary, but I know the future is filled with You showing Your greatness in ways that are exceedingly, abundantly more than anything Moses could have imagined (Ephesians 3:20). Jesus, help me to live each day with expectancy of Your greatness!

Jesus, there is no god in heaven or on earth who can perform such great and mighty deeds as you do!

I’m amazed by Your greatness!

Amen and Amen!

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller
Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: Deuteronomy 6:1-9:29

It’s Time to Find a Phone Booth! —Ephesians 6:10-18

 

Today’s Scripture Reading: Ephesians 5:15-6:24, Colossians 1:1-23

I love the movie Superman!  I can’t tell you how many times I’ve wished I could jump into a phone booth and come out with an answer to the day’s crisis.

  • Superpowers
  • Saving the world
  • A special suit that gives me confidence, strength and courage

Yep, that’s just what I need.  How about you?

Friends, it’s time to find the phone booth, because I’ve found the suit!

Yes, we can live in today’s troubled world with confidence, strength, and courage.

Yes, we can rescue others from the depths of despair…if we put on the suit!

A final word: Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power.  Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil.  For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.

Therefore, put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle you will still be standing firm.  Stand your ground, putting on the belt of truth and the body armor of God’s righteousness.  For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared.  In addition to all of these, hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil.  Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere. —Ephesians 6:10-18 (emphasis mine)

If this supernatural “suit” is available is every Christian, then why is it that many 21st century Christians aren’t strong enough to fight their way out of a wet paper bag, much less rescue the perishing and care for the dying!

Because we aren’t disciplining ourselves each day to put on the “power suit;” we sort of look like a weak “Clark Kent” before he goes into the phone booth.

Paul told us exactly what to do, put on every piece of God’s armor and then we will be able to stand firm against the strategies of the devil.

Just like Superman, we must be ready at all times.  We can’t wait until a crisis to find our “suit,” we need to put it on first thing, every morning.

No we don’t really need a phone booth and it’s not a physical “suit” but the armor of God is our only hope of a victorious life that causes others to know Him more.

Heavenly Father, help us to remember our armor each day.  Teach us to be intentional in equipping ourselves to be strong and courageous and stand against the strategies of the enemy of our soul.  Lord, use us to rescue someone today!

In Jesus’ Name.  Amen and Amen!

 

© 2013 Dianne Guthmuller

Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading:  Colossians 1:24-4:18

Here’s a Prayer That Will Change Your Day—Ephesians 3:16-21


Today’s Scripture Reading:   Ephesians 3:1-5:14

Need a special prayer for today?  The Apostle Paul helped us out.

Friends, print this prayer, change the personal pronouns and insert your name, say it out loud, put it on your mirror.  God wants to accomplish so much more in our lives than we could ask, think or even dream, but we have to trust Him…

[Heavenly Father] I pray that from [Your] glorious, unlimited resources [You] will empower [us] with inner strength through [Your] Spirit.  

Then Christ will make his home in [our] hearts as [we] trust in him. [I pray that our] roots will grow down into God’s love and keep [us] strong.  And [Lord] may [we] have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep [Your] love is.  

May[we] experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then [we] will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God.

Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think. Glory to him in the church and in Christ Jesus through all generations forever and ever!

Amen.

Ephesians 3:16-21 [inserts mine]

Have an Ephesians 3:20 day!

Blessings!

 

© 2013 Dianne Guthmuller

Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading:  Ephesians 5:15-6:24, Colossians 1:1-23

Are You Willing to Serve Others During Your Tough Times? –Acts 28

Today’s Scripture Reading:  Acts 28:1-32, Ephesians 1:1-2:22

When times are tough my first choice is to go to bed, cover my head and not get up until the storm has passed.   The last thing I want to do is serve others.  I tend to close the windows, pull down the shades and get very selfish and self-centered during seasons of hardship.

What if…

the reason God  allowed seasons of hardship in our lives was for the spreading of the gospel?

The Apostle Paul was an expert at continuing to serve God in the midst of tough times.  In today’s reading we see three instances of Paul ministering to others during his “tough times.”

  • Paul prayed for Publius’s father who was ill with fever and dysentery and he was healed
  • When the news spread of Paul’s healing power, all the other sick people on the island came for prayer and Paul prayed and they were healed
  • Paul gathered the local Jewish leaders to share the gospel of Jesus Christ

Paul was in chains or on house arrest and guarded by a soldier during these times of serving others.

How did Paul do that?

  • He was focused on God’s calling on his life more than his personal desires or comfort.  But the Lord said (to Ananias), “Go, for Saul is my chosen instrument to take my message to the Gentiles and to kings, as well as to the people of Israel.  And I will show him how much he must suffer for my name’s sake.” Acts 9:15-16 (explanation mine)
  • He knew that God uses our dependence on Him in the tough times to bring people to Jesus
  • He knew that God uses different ways to get His will accomplished (what better way to get a meeting with a king than to be arrested and brought before him)
  • He believed Romans 8:28:  And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.
  • He saw EVERYTHING as a divine appointment

What are you going through today?

How does God want to use your “tough times” to spread the love of Christ to others?

Are you willing to serve God and others during your tough times?

Heavenly Father, in our humanness we want to be served in life’s tough times rather than serve others.  Holy Spirit, help us to see the opportunities to serve others in our tough times as God’s calling and plan for our life.  Lord, we want to be like Paul and put others’ needs ahead of our own.  Use our lives for Your Kingdom and Your Glory.

In Jesus’ Name.  Amen and Amen!

 

© 2013 Dianne Guthmuller
Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading:   Ephesians 3:1-5:14

It’s Time to Find a Phone Booth! —Ephesians 6:10-18

 

Today’s Scripture Reading: Ephesians 5:15-6:24, Colossians 1:1-23

I loved the movie Superman!  I can’t tell you how many times I’ve wished I could jump into a phone booth and come out with an answer to the day’s crisis.

  • Superpowers
  • Saving the world
  • A special suit that gives me confidence, strength and courage

Yep, that’s just what I need.  How about you?

Friends, it’s time to find the phone booth, because I’ve found the suit!

Yes, we can live in today’s troubled world with confidence, strength, and courage.

Yes, we can rescue others from the depths of despair…if we put on the suit!

A final word: Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power.  Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil.  For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.

Therefore, put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle you will still be standing firm.  Stand your ground, putting on the belt of truth and the body armor of God’s righteousness.  For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared.  In addition to all of these, hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil.  Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere. —Ephesians 6:10-18 (emphasis mine)

If this supernatural “suit” is available is every Christian, then why is it that many 21st century Christians aren’t strong enough to fight their way out of a wet paper bag, much less rescue the perishing and care for the dying!

Because we aren’t discipling ourselves each day to put on the “power suit;” we sort of look like a weak “Clark Kent” before he goes into the phone booth.

Paul told us exactly what to do, put on every piece of God’s armor and then we will be able to stand firm against the strategies of the devil.

Just like Superman, we must be ready at all times.  We can’t wait until a crisis to find our “suit,” we need to put it on first thing, every morning.

No we don’t really need a phone booth and it’s not a physical “suit” but the armor of God is our only hope of a victorious life that causes others to know Him more.

Heavenly Father, help us to remember our armor each day.  Teach us to be intentional in equipping ourselves to be strong and courageous and stand against the strategies of the enemy of our soul.  Lord, use us to rescue someone today!

In Jesus’ Name.  Amen and Amen!

 

© 2012 Dianne Guthmuller

Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading:  Colossians 1:24-4:18

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