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Lord, Thank You for Understanding My Groanings—Romans 8:26-28

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Today’s Scripture Reading: Romans 8:18-10:21

Heavenly Father, Romans 8:28 is one of my favorite verses. It has carried me through many difficult times. But today the verses preceding this well-known verse jumped out like a neon sign.

And the Holy Spirit helps us in our weakness. For example, we don’t know what God wants us to pray for. But the Holy Spirit prays for us with groanings that cannot be expressed in words. And the Father who knows all hearts knows what the Spirit is saying, for the Spirit pleads for us believers in harmony with God’s own will.  —Romans 8:26-27

Lord, this year has been a season of weakness. I have been weary physically, emotionally, and mentally. Yet, this will go down as a year of extreme closeness to You. You were there through it all. As my human defenses were stripped away, I was left with my spirit (wo)man. I had no words, I had no solutions, I had no brilliant ideas. I was just here and You were very close and somewhere is the trauma, You became enough.

Lord, I’m beginning to understand this verse:

He must become greater and greater, and I must become less and less. —John 3:30

Holy Spirit, You are helping me in my weakness. You have translated my pain, tears, sadness, and brokenness into groanings my Heavenly Father understands. Thank You for praying prayers that are in harmony with God’s will for my life–

Because…

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. —Romans 8:28

Lord, I trust You.

In Jesus Name. Amen and Amen!
 

 

 

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller
 
Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: Romans 11:1-14:23

Lord, I Want This Kind of Storm in My Life—Acts 2:1-2

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Today’s Scripture Reading: Mark 16:19-20, Luke 24:50-53, Acts 1:1-2:47

Heavenly Father, as a native of the Florida Gulf Coast, I am well acquainted with wind storms. Yes, they’re scary but I’ve always had a fascination with the wind as it changes the water from a quiet calm to a roaring, mighty force to be reckoned with, in a matter of minutes!

The Holy Spirit is like the roaring of a mighty windstorm. 

On the day of Pentecost all the believers were meeting together in one place. Suddenly, there was a sound from heaven like the roaring of a mighty windstorm, and it filled the house where they were sitting. —Acts 2:1-2

I could write paragraphs on the parallels between windstorms and the Holy Spirit but the most important commonality for me is they are both powerful.

Jesus, I made up my mind long ago that if You were giving it, I wanted it. I’ve said many times we are only on this earth for two reasons: to know You and to cause others to know You. Holy Spirit, the only way we can do these to things is with Your supernatural power:

“But now I am going away to the one who sent me, and not one of you is asking where I am going.  Instead, you grieve because of what I’ve told you. But in fact, it is best for you that I go away, because if I don’t, the Advocate won’t come. If I do go away, then I will send him to you. And when he comes, he will convict the world of its sin, and of God’s righteousness, and of the coming judgment. —John 16:5-8

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But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere—in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”  —Acts 1:8

Holy Spirit, EVERYDAY I see You at work. For example, this morning I woke up at 3 a.m. and couldn’t go back to sleep. Some would say, that’s a bad start to my day but I’ve walked with You long enough to know if I can’t sleep I need to get up, You’ve got something to say. After praying for some urgent needs I saw through social media, I “happened” upon this article about the Holy Spirit and then I read today’s scripture and went Wow, thank You Holy Spirit! You are preparing my mind to write today’s prayer.

Holy Spirit, blow into my life today. Shake me up, stir me, anoint me, teach me, speak to me, speak through me, and use my life to help others know You more. You are powerful and unpredictable, just like a windstorm and that makes being filled with Your Spirit the greatest adventure of my life!

I am blessed!

In Jesus Name. Amen and Amen!

 

 

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller

 

 

Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: Acts 3:1-5:42

Lord, I Just Saw a Suddenly! —John 20:19-21

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Today’s Scripture Reading: Luke 24:13-43. Mark 16:12-13, John 20:19–23, Mark 16:14, John 20:24-21:25, Matthew 28:16-20, Mark 16:15-18, Luke 24:44-49

Jesus, You gave the disciples some shock and awe in today’s reading! I counted five SUDDEN appearances. I can’t imagine what that was like…

That Sunday evening the disciples were meeting behind locked doors because they were afraid of the Jewish leaders. Suddenly, Jesus was standing there among them! “Peace be with you,” he said. As he spoke, he showed them the wounds in his hands and his side. They were filled with joy when they saw the Lord!  Again he said, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I am sending you.” —John 20:19-21

But I know that You still do SUDDENLYS. I just witnessed one.

Jesus, the situation was desperate, the people involved were beginning to lose hope, and then suddenly You showed up and said “peace be with You” and instantly You performed spiritual open heart surgery and everything changed.

Talk about a turn-around! Lord, I’m so thankful! Thank You for suddenlys.

 

Amen and Amen!

 

 

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller

 

Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: Mark 16:19-20, Luke 24:50-53, Acts 1:1-2:47
 

 

 

Lord, I Want to Be a Risk-Taker—Mark 15:42-43

 

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Today’s Scripture Reading: Mark 15:42-47, Matthew 27:57-61, Luke 23:50-56, John 19:38-42, Matthew 27:62-66, Mark 16:1-8, Matthew 28:1-7, Luke 24:1-12, Mark 16:9-11, John 20:1-18, Matthew 28:8-15

Heavenly Father, I know I change my biblical heroes with everyday’s reading but today I’m amazed by Joseph of Arimathea.

This all happened on Friday, the day of preparation,the day before the Sabbath. As evening approached, Joseph of Arimathea took a risk and went to Pilate and asked for Jesus’ body. (Joseph was an honored member of the high council, and he was waiting for the Kingdom of God to come.) —Mark 15:42-43

Lord, I know this is an important story because You inspired four different authors to record it. When I put the four accounts together Joseph definitely is someone we can learn a lot from.

Joseph risk his wealth, reputation and status to take on the role of a servant and honor his savior. Rich people don’t take bloody, beaten, dirty, and smelly people down from crosses–they have servants for that. Influential people don’t publicly honor someone who their peers and colleagues despise, it’s professional suicide.

Joseph took a risk and humbled himself to serve and care for his savior; talk about a public profession of faith!

Jesus, I can’t physically honor and care for You the way Joseph of Arimathea did but I can be that same kind of risk taker.

“And the King will say, ‘I tell you the truth, when you did it to one of the least of these my brothers and sisters, you were doing it to me!’ —Matthew 25:40

Holy Spirit, show me who to serve in Jesus Name as I go about my day.

 

Amen and Amen!

 

 

 

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller
 

 

Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: Luke 24:13-43. Mark 16:12-13, John 20:19–23, Mark 16:14, John 20:24-21:25, Matthew 28:16-20, Mark 16:15-18, Luke 24:44-49

Lord, How Did She Do It? —John 19:25-27

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Today’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

Heavenly Father, as I read the account of Jesus’ crucifixion my thoughts went to Mary. How did she endure every mother’s worst nightmare—watching her child’s inhumane and torturous execution happen before her very eyes?

Standing near the cross were Jesus’ mother, and his mother’s sister, Mary (the wife of Clopas), and Mary Magdalene. 26 When Jesus saw his mother standing there beside the disciple he loved, he said to her, “Dear woman, here is your son.”  And he said to this disciple, “Here is your mother.” And from then on this disciple took her into his home. —John 19:25-27

Jesus, how did she stay there?

I’m sure it would have been easier for her to go home, cover her head and try to silence the mental images of what was happening. But Mary didn’t do the easy thing. As a mother who’s seen each of her children suffer through some hard times that look like a walk in the park compared to Your suffering, I can only see one way of getting through that day—the supernatural spirit of God.

Jesus, part of Your suffering on that day was to face crucifixion without Your Heavenly Father.

At about three o’clock, Jesus called out with a loud voice, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” which means “My God, my God, why have you abandoned me?” —Matthew 27:46

Jesus, no one could take the place of Your Heavenly Father. Mary couldn’t save You. She couldn’t ease Your pain. All she could do was stay with You. I can just imagine when Your eyes met Mary’s eyes. Love, comfort, and strength must have gone straight to Your heart like a laser beam. I have to believe Mary was Your Heavenly Father’s representative at the cross. I believe He was loving You through Mary.

Lord, in today’s world there is so much suffering and sadness. My natural reaction is to run and hide but people need Your love, comfort, and strength.

I need the courage of Mary. I need the strength to stand with them in their suffering to show Your love. Lord, give me the privilege of being Your representative in their tough times.

Holy Spirit, give me supernatural, unexplainable love and compassion for those You place in my life today.

In Jesus Name. Amen and Amen!

 

 

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller
 

Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: Mark 15:42-47, Matthew 27:57-61, Luke 23:50-56, John 19:38-42, Matthew 27:62-66, Mark 16:1-8, Matthew 28:1-7, Luke 24:1-12, Mark 16:9-11, John 20:1-18, Matthew 28:8-15

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, Does My Denial Disqualify My Calling? —Matthew 26:69-75

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Today’s Scripture Reading: Mark 14:53-65, Matthew 26:57-68, Mark 14:66-72, Matthew 26:69-75, Luke 22:54-62, John 18:25-27, Mark 15:1, Matthew 27:1-2, Luke 22:66-71, Matthew 27:3-10

Heavenly Father, I really feel bad for Peter:

Meanwhile, Peter was sitting outside in the courtyard. A servant girl came over and said to him, “You were one of those with Jesus the Galilean.”

But Peter denied it in front of everyone. “I don’t know what you’re talking about,” he said.

Later, out by the gate, another servant girl noticed him and said to those standing around, “This man was with Jesus of Nazareth.”

Again Peter denied it, this time with an oath. “I don’t even know the man,” he said.

A little later some of the other bystanders came over to Peter and said, “You must be one of them; we can tell by your Galilean accent.”

Peter swore, “A curse on me if I’m lying—I don’t know the man!” And immediately the rooster crowed.

Suddenly, Jesus’ words flashed through Peter’s mind: “Before the rooster crows, you will deny three times that you even know me.” And he went away, weeping bitterly. —Matthew 26:69-75

Peter’s words “Even if I have to die with you, I will never deny you” (Matthew 26:34) waved the red flag to Satan, the enemy of Peter’s soul. Satan said “Game On” and crafted a plan to get Peter to do the very thing that he never wanted to do—deny his Lord.

The same evil that caused Judas to betray Jesus caused Peter to deny Him. Satan used fear to get his plan accomplished in Peter’s life. He was afraid for his life, afraid for Jesus, afraid for the future and afraid of failure.

Jesus, Matthew recorded Your conversation with Peter (Matthew 16:17-19) where You changed his name and said You will build Your church upon this rock (Peter). I’m sure Peter thought his denial disqualified him for Your calling but the next time You saw him You did his first training session on building Your church (my interpretation) and there was no mention of denial, roosters, or fireside chats, just a check to make sure he still loved You and a charge to get to work and feed Your sheep.

After breakfast Jesus asked Simon Peter, “Simon son of John, do you love me more than these?”

“Yes, Lord,” Peter replied, “you know I love you.”

“Then feed my lambs,” Jesus told him.

Jesus repeated the question: “Simon son of John, do you love me?”

“Yes, Lord,” Peter said, “you know I love you.”

“Then take care of my sheep,” Jesus said.

A third time he asked him, “Simon son of John, do you love me?”

Peter was hurt that Jesus asked the question a third time. He said, “Lord, you know everything. You know that I love you.”

Jesus said, “Then feed my sheep. —John 21:15-17

 

Lord, we all go through times of fear and doubt. We all make mistakes. Many times we choose the same path as Peter. We make grand claims to love and serve You at all costs and then we adversity strikes, we deny You.  But that does not diminish Your plans for us. You’re not even surprised by it. You understand the spiritual battle that’s raging much better than we do.

Lord, help me to realize the only way I can fail is to quit. Help me to learn from my mistakes and grow beyond them.

In Jesus Name. Amen and Amen!

 

 

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller
 
 

 

Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: Mark 15:2-5, Matthew 27:11-14, Luke 23:1-2, 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

Lord, Sometimes I Forget That These Three Things Aren’t My Job—John 17: 15-19

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Today’s Scripture Reading: John 15:18-17:26

Jesus, I’m sure I’ve seen this before but it feels like my very first time!

“But now I am going away to the one who sent me, and not one of you is asking where I am going. Instead, you grieve because of what I’ve told you. But in fact, it is best for you that I go away, because if I don’t, the Advocate won’t come. If I do go away, then I will send him to you. And when he comes, he will convict the world of its sin, and of God’s righteousness, and of the coming judgment. The world’s sin is that it refuses to believe in me. Righteousness is available because I go to the Father, and you will see me no more. Judgment will come because the ruler of this world has already been judged. —John 16:5-11

Jesus, thank You for dying on the cross and rising from the dead for my salvation but these verses remind me that Your return to our Heavenly Father is what sealed the deal on our righteousness and provided us with a 24/7 advocate, Your Holy Spirit to continually accomplish these three things:

Convict the world of…

  • It’s sin
  • Your righteousness
  • The coming judgment

Holy Spirit, as a speaker, writer, and teacher I know You’ve used me as Your instrument of conviction but I also know there have been times when I set out on my own to conviction crusade. Let’s just say there’s a world of difference in Your results and mine.

Holy Spirit, if convicting the world is Your job, what is my job as Your disciple?

When I am with those who are weak, I share their weakness, for I want to bring the weak to Christ. Yes, I try to find common ground with everyone, doing everything I can to save some. –1 Corinthians 9:22

Holy Spirit, help me remember these words spoken through the Apostle Paul and find common ground with those I come in contact with today. When You see me taking on Your role, as CCSRJ (Chief Convicter of sin, righteousness, and judgment) STOP me, silence me, and move me, but when You choose to speak or work through me help me to go, speak and move under Your anointing with confidence.

Father, Son, and Holy Spirit thank You for being MY God. Thank You for life. Thank You for redemption. Thank You for conviction. Thank You for being my advocate.

In Jesus Name. Amen and Amen!

 

 

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller
 
 

Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: John 18:1-2, Mark 14:32-42, Matthew 26:36-46, Luke 22:39-46, Mark 14:43-52, Matthew 26:47-56, Luke 22:47-53, John 18:3-24

Lord, Just For Today…—John 14:1

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Today’s Scripture Reading: John 13:31-38, Mark 14:27-31, Matthew 26:31-35, Luke 22:31-38, John 14:1-15:17

Heavenly Father, I’m living on an emotional roller coaster. One day I’m up, the next day I’m down. One day I’m calm the next day I’m crazy. I really don’t know how to keep my heart from being troubled for more than a day or two at a time.

Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me. —John 14:1

I think I trust You, but my actions look more like panic than trust.

Lord, I surrender…again. Help me to trust You just for today…

In Jesus Name. Amen and Amen.

 

 

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller
 
 

Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: John 15:18-17:26

Lord, I Don’t Want to Make This Mistake—Mark 12:24

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Today’s Scripture Reading: Matthew 21:28-32, Mark 12:1-12, Matthew 21:33-46, Luke 20:9-19, Matthew 22:1-14, Mark 12:13-17, Matthew 22:15-22, Luke 20:20-26, Mark 12:18-27, Matthew 22:23-33, Luke 20:27-40

Jesus, I’ve made a lot of mistakes. A person can’t live 50 plus years without making their fare share. When I first saw this verse my mind immediately saw these as two mistakes but right before I hit the post button I noticed that it’s really one mistake with two components.

Jesus replied, “Your mistake is that you don’t know the Scriptures, and you don’t know the power of God. —Mark 12:24

“Word Studies in the New Testament” paraphrases this verse as The reason of your error is your ignorance of the scriptures and of the power of God.

Lord, many of the mistakes I’ve made are because of my ignorance of Your Word and Your power. I can’t understand Your Word without Your Power and I can’t understand Your Power without Your Word. Yes, I see it! It really is just one mistake!

Holy Spirit, even though I’ve served You many years and studied Your Word, there’s still only one way I can avoid these mistakes— It’s with Your supernatural power.  The Sadducees (Mark 12:18-27) were highly intelligent and known as the brilliant minds of the day. They must have been insulted by this verse.

Knowing Your Word and Your power has nothing to do with intelligence. I cannot “know” the scriptures and “know” Your power without Your guidance, intervention, and counsel.

Lord, give me discernment. Remind me of the many times I’ve seen Your supernatural power displayed in my life and the lives of the people around me.

But when the Father sends the Advocate as my representative–that is, the Holy Spirit–he will teach you everything and will remind you of everything I have told you. —John 14:26

Holy Spirit, I just experienced Your power as I studied this verse. I am in complete awe!

Holy Spirit, thank You for being my teacher.

In Jesus Name. Amen and Amen!

 

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller
 
Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: Mark 12:28-34, Matthew 22:34-40, Mark 12:35-37, Matthew 22:41-46, Luke 20:41-44, Mark 12:38-40, Matthew 23:1-12, Luke 20:45-47, Matthew 23:13-39, Mark 12:41-44, Luke 21:1-4

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