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Lord, Don’t Ever Stop Pursuing Me-Psalm 23

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Today’s Scripture Reading: Psalms 22-26

Heavenly Father, the 23rd Psalm is one of the first scripture passages I heard about as a kid. I remember memorizing it in summer Bible school. In my young mind it was about sheep, shepherds, fields, walking through valleys, pouring oil on people’s heads, and mercy and goodness (words that I didn’t understand) following me around all the time.

Lord, now that I’m an adult who’s lived through abundance and lack, good times and bad, mountains and valleys, this psalm brings rest and peace to my soul.

As I start my day, I feel weary from the cares of the world. Lord, is this my declaration. I speak it out loud. I say to  my soul, “be renewed and refreshed.”

  The Lord is my shepherd;

I have all that I need.

He lets me rest in green meadows;

he leads me beside peaceful streams.

He renews my strength.

He guides me along right paths,

bringing honor to his name.

Even when I walk

through the darkest valley,

I will not be afraid,

for you are close beside me.

Your rod and your staff

protect and comfort me.

You prepare a feast for me

in the presence of my enemies.

You honor me by anointing my head with oil.

My cup overflows with blessings.

Surely your goodness and unfailing love will pursue me

all the days of my life,

and I will live in the house of the Lord

forever.

Jesus, don’t ever stop pursuing me. You are all I need.

Let this psalm be so in my life today!

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller
Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: Psalms 27-32

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, Be Our Stronghold in the Wilderness—1 Samuel 23:14

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Today’s Scripture Reading: 1 Samuel 23:13-29, Psalms 54, 1 Samuel 24:1-25:44

Heavenly Father, as I read Your Word early this morning a phrase jumped off the page:

David now stayed in the strongholds of the wilderness and in the hill country of Ziph. Saul hunted him day after day, but God didn’t let Saul find him.  —1 Samuel 23:14

Lord, I know that in Jewish culture the word wilderness or Midbar in Hebrew didn’t just mean a place that was wild, unsettled, and desolate. It also symbolized a place of struggle, emptiness, and fear. The word stronghold is completely opposite of wilderness meaning a place of security or survival.

Father, you had David safe and secure in his place of struggle, lack and fear. What a beautiful picture! What a message for us in today’s world.

Lord, I have many family and friends who are in a place of struggle, emptiness, and fear. Lord, be their security today. Let them know they will survive and even thrive through this wilderness season. Let them know you are working this hard season for their good and Your Glory (Romans 8:28).

Holy Spirit, comfort them during this time of loneliness, uncertainty and anxiety. Use this song by Out of Darkness to encourage them today.

In Jesus Name. Amen and Amen!

 

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©2014, Dianne Guthmuller
Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: 1 Samuel 26:1-27:7, 1 Chronicles 12:1-7, 1 Samuel 27:8-29:11, 1 Chronicles 12:19, Psalm 56

Lord, No One Cares What Happens to Me–Psalm 142:4

Today’s Scripture Reading:  1 Samuel 22:1-2; Psalm 57; Psalm 142; 1 Chronicles 12:8-18; 1 Samuel 22:3-23; Psalm 52; 1 Samuel 23:1-12

Heavenly Father, Your Word is amazing!  No matter what I’m feeling, You know and You understand.  Reading David’s psalms is like reading my own thoughts during life’s tough times:

A psalm of David, regarding his experience in the cave. A prayer.

I cry out to the Lord; 

I plead for the Lord’s mercy. 

I pour out my complaints before him

and tell him all my troubles. 

When I am overwhelmed, 

you alone know the way I should turn. 

Wherever I go, my enemies have set traps for me. 

I look for someone to come and help me, 

but no one gives me a passing thought!

No one will help me;

no one cares a bit what happens to me.

Then 

I pray to you, O Lord. 

I say, “You are my place of refuge. 

You are all I really want in life. 

Hear my cry, for I am very low. 

Rescue me from my persecutors, 

for they are too strong for me. 

Bring me out of prison so I can thank you. 

The godly will crowd around me, 

for you are good to me.”  —Psalm 142

Father, thank You for Your Word.  Thank You for understanding how I feel.  Thanking You for listening to my complaints.  Thank You for caring about me.

In Jesus’ Name.  Amen and Amen!


©2014, Dianne Guthmuller

Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: 1 Samuel 23:13-29; Psalm 54; 1 Samuel 24:1-25:44

Lord, I Want To Be Brave–Judges 7:3


Today’s Scripture Reading: Judges 7:1-9:21

Heavenly Father, I know it takes bravery to serve You and be in Your army.  Serving You has never been for the faint-hearted.  Lord, in today’s reading You told Gideon to send home every warrior who was timid or afraid.

 

Therefore, tell the people, ‘Whoever is timid or afraid may leave this mountain

and go home.’” So 22,000 of them went home, leaving only 10,000 who

were willing to fight.  —Judges 7:3

Lord, it didn’t seem as though You were angry with those who went home; they were never mentioned again.

But…

They missed out.

 

They missed being a part of the miracle.

 

Jesus, Your miracles show up in the tough times.  Help me not to run from them.  Help me to stand strong and be brave.  Help me to look for your miracles in the hard things in life.

Lord, I don’t want to miss Your miracles.  I want a front row seat!

In Your Name I pray.  Amen and Amen!

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller

Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: Judges 9:22-11:28

Lord, If You Are With Us, Why Has This Happened? Judges 6:13


Today’s Scripture Reading: Judges 3:31-6:40

Today’s prayer was written three years ago. I still pray this prayer for these special friends and anyone dealing with “why God?”

Heavenly Father, I’m so glad Gideon asked You this question.  It tells me it’s okay for me to ask You “why?”

Lord, my heart is breaking for my friends. They lost their child in a tragic accident.  I’m asking this question on their behalf today, “Lord, if You are with us why did this happened?”

“Sir,” Gideon replied, “if the Lord is with us, why has all this happened to us? And where are all the miracles our ancestors told us about? Didn’t they say, ‘The Lord brought us up out of Egypt’? But now the Lord has abandoned us and handed us over to the Midianites.”  —Judges 6:13

Lord, You didn’t answer Gideon’s question and I don’t believe the answer to my “whys” will come while on this earth, but You did answer him:

Then the Lord turned to him and said, “Go with the strength you have, and rescue Israel from the Midianites. I am sending you!  —Judges 6:14

The Lord said to him, “I will be with you. And you will destroy the Midianites as if you were fighting against one man.  —Judges 6:16

Lord, we don’t know what this day holds, but we can take comfort in these three things:

  1. We have strength that we may not know we have
  2. God knows the situation He is allowing us to walk through; He knows we can get through it
  3. He will be with us

 

Father, help my friends to make it through the day!  Show us how to love and comfort them during these dark hours.  We are so grateful to know that You are welcoming this sweet young man into Your presence.  Jesus, thank You for eternal life.

We trust You.  Amen and Amen!

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller

Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: Judges 7:1-9:21

Lord, I’m Feeling Defeated—Joshua 17:16-18

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Today’s Scripture Reading: Joshua 15:20-17:18

Heavenly Father, some days we just feel defeated. Some days the world seems too hard, the opposition seems too strong:

The descendants of Joseph responded, “It’s true that the hill country is not large enough for us. But all the Canaanites in the lowlands have iron chariots, both those in Beth-shan and its surrounding settlements and those in the valley of Jezreel. They are too strong for us.”

Then Joshua said to the tribes of Ephraim and Manasseh, the descendants of Joseph, “Since you are so large and strong, you will be given more than one portion. The forests of the hill country will be yours as well. Clear as much of the land as you wish, and take possession of its farthest corners. And you will drive out the Canaanites from the valleys, too, even though they are strong and have iron chariots.” Joshua 17:16-18

Holy Spirit, remind us today that You are never defeated, life is never to hard for You, and You are stronger than all our opposition. Help us to look at life’s challenges and think, “That’s nothing for my God!”

Lord, we trust You!

In Jesus’ Name. Amen and Amen!

 

 

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller
Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: Joshua 18:1-19:48

Lord, Help Me to “Get Up and Resume the Journey” –Deuteronomy 10:11

 

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Today’s Scripture Reading: Deuteronomy 10:1-12:32

Heavenly Father, sometimes I want to quit.

S-o-m-e-t-i-m-e-s…

  • My goals seem impossible
  • I doubt my calling
  • I’m just plain tired
  • I don’t feel capable
  • I don’t feel worthy

But,

The words Moses spoke to the Israelites keep ringing in my ears:

Then the Lord said to me, ‘Get up and resume the journey, and lead the people to the land I swore to give to their ancestors, so they may take possession of it.’ —Deuteronomy 10:11

When you spoke those words to Moses, he was at the height of his frustrations with the Israelites.  Aaron had just led them in the design and worship of the golden calf.  Lord, help me to remember that my frustrations, lack of understanding, doubts or fatigue does not change Your plans for my life.

Jesus, give me a renewed enthusiasm to resume the journey. Lord, lead me so I can lead others.  Help me to take possession of the Promised Land of goals and dreams You have for my life.

In Jesus’ Name.  Amen and Amen!

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller

Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: Deuteronomy 13:1-16:17

Lord, Help Me to Carry the Loads of Those Who are Hurting—Numbers 4:31-33

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Today’s Scripture Reading: Numbers 4:1-5:31

Heavenly Father, I wonder if the Merarites were disappointed when they were given their “special purpose”?

As we’ve learned in Exodus, the Levites were chosen by God to take care of the Tabernacle.  Today we saw the Lord hand out duties for the different divisions of the Levites. All the Merarites who were between the ages of 30 and 50 and eligible had one duty…one job…one ministry:

Their only duty at the Tabernacle will be to carry loads. They will carry the frames of the Tabernacle, the crossbars, the posts, and the bases; also the posts for the courtyard walls with their bases, pegs, and ropes; and all the accessories and everything else related to their use. Assign the various loads to each man by name.  So these are the duties of the Merarite clans at the Tabernacle. They are directly responsible to Ithamar son of Aaron the priest.” Numbers 4:31-33  (Emphasis mine)

Lord, what if Your special purpose for my life is to carry loads?

Not like the Merarites, who carried the pieces of the Tabernacle but carrying the loads of the hurting, lost, orphaned, or widowed of our families, churches, communities or world.

It took strong backs for the Merarites to hand-carry the Tabernacle each time God said, “It’s time to pack up and move.”

What does it take to carry the loads of the lost, hurting, orphaned, or widowed?

Lord, You asked me some tough questions as I read today’s scriptures:

  • Dianne, are you willing to carry the loads of the hurting?
  • Are you willing to suffer so that you can truly understand the pain of others?
  • Are you willing to walk a hard road so that your experiences will help someone who literally wouldn’t survive without you?
  • Is another person worth that much to you?

Father, these are very hard questions.  Lord, I’m glad You are carrying out Your plans and purposes for my life without asking my permission. I most likely would have said, “No” to the hard times in my life, if I were given a choice. I’m just not that self-sacrificing.

Jesus,  You know who needs a word of encouragement, a hot meal, some groceries, their house cleaned, a ride to the doctor, a real friend…the list could go on and on.

Heavenly Father, I want to carry the loads of those who are suffering.  Use the pain of my past to give others hope. Touch my heart.  Make me willing.  Give me eyes to see what You see!

In Jesus’ Name.  Amen and Amen!

©2014, Dianne Guthmuller
Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading:Numbers 6:1-27, Numbers 10:1-36

Lord, Do You See My Pain? –Exodus 3:7

 

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Today’s Scripture Reading: Exodus 1:1-2:25; 1 Chronicles 6:1-3a; Exodus 3:1-4:17

Heavenly Father,

I’m hurting; my world is falling a part.

Do You See My Pain?

Jesus, someone I love dearly is going through the trial of their lives.

Can you help them?

Lord, You saw the oppression of the children of Israel by the slave drivers.  You heard their cries of distress. You were aware of their suffering and the harsh abuse they received from the Egyptians.  You came to their rescue!  You sent Moses to lead them.

Then the Lord told him, “I have certainly seen the oppression of my people in Egypt. I have heard their cries of distress because of their harsh slave drivers. Yes, I am aware of their suffering. So I have come down to rescue them from the power of the Egyptians and lead them out of Egypt into their own fertile and spacious land. It is a land flowing with milk and honey—the land where the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites, and Jebusites now live.  –Exodus 3:7-8

Lord, can you send someone to rescue me?

“My child, I already have.  I sent My Son to save you.  Cry out to Him today.  He will be with you.  He will lead you to your Promised Land.”  (John 3:16-17)

Father, thank You for sending You only Son to rescue us and lead us to You. Just like the Israelites, we are often filled with doubts.  Forgive us for doubting You.  Allow us to see You in our daily lives.  Help us to know You more!

In Jesus’ Name.  Amen and Amen!


©2014, Dianne Guthmuller

Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: Exodus 4:18-7:13

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