Saturday, March 25, 2017

 

 
 
Devotional for Saturday, March 25, 2017
“The Transformed Life”
 
 
by Dona Hake

 

Today we are going to meditate on the word transformation.  I was reading and thinking about the incredible transformation of  the Apostle Paul in the scriptures.  Before his transformation he was known as  Saul of Tarsus, and some of the most powerful writings in the New Testament were written by him.     Before his encounter with God he sought out Christians to imprison them and kill them but praise God he was miraculously transformed by the love of the most forgiving God.    What a wonderful day it was in the life of Paul when God knocked him off his “high horse” and he humbled himself under the mighty hand of God!
 
As I began to pray and think about transformation I immediately saw in my spirit something being turned inside out. You see when you turn anything in side out you see all the things that are hidden. For instance, a piece of clothing. When you turn a piece of clothing inside out you see the stitches or any of the mistakes that were made in it’s making. 
 
I can remember creating many things when I used to sew.  Anything from dresses for myself to making a young lady’s wedding gown, and then I made all my bridesmaid’s gowns for my wedding day.  I can always remember that each time I created a garment  that there was some kind of a mistake that only I knew about, and I did my best to fix it that it would not be seen on the outside yet if you looked at the underside you could see the mistake.
 
I think of this as a wonderful analogy of who we are. We were fearfully and wonderfully made by our Creator. But yet as a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ we probably can all recall the day that we turned our hearts over to Him for it was the day we surrendered it all, and we permitted His light to soak into the depths of our  heart and examine every place that was wrong, so He could make it right.   The Lord knows all that is within us that is imperfect, and He loved us anyway, and began a good work in us.   He promises to continue that work as we submit our lives to Him.  Praise Him for the day that He turned us inside out, and cleansed us with His wonderful blood!   It truly was the beginning of our transformation.
 
Today I challenge you to continue acknowledging your need for transformation every time you spend time with Him, read His Word, or hear His Word when you attend church. Permit that Word to go into your heart, go into your mind and continue the transforming process by the hand of a loving and living God.
 
Romans 12:2 Amplified Version
And do not be conformed to this world [any longer with its superficial values and customs], but be transformed and progressively changed [as you mature spiritually] by the renewing of your mind [focusing on godly values and ethical attitudes], so that you may prove [for yourselves] what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect [in His plan and purpose for you].
 


Thursday, March 23, 2017

 

 

 

Devotional for Thursday, March 23, 2017
“Whoever Lives In Me”

Without Him I Can Do Nothing

by Dona Hake

 

John 15:5   The Voice 

“I am the vine, and you are the branches.

If you abide in Me and I in you, you will bear great fruit.

Without Me, you will accomplish nothing.”

 

What a beautiful  scripture to keep fresh in our hearts.  Without Him we can do nothing, and yet with Him ALL things are possible!  All means all, and that little word with three letters contains big possibilities.  Whether we are trying to do things for Him or the things that involve our daily accomplishments, it would do us good to know that we are pulling ALL of our strength and wisdom from His resources.

 

I can remember once putting some fresh batteries into a flashlight.  I checked and checked to make sure all the batteries were in the right position and secure.  It made no sense to me that there was no power.   I was absolutely positive that I had them in correctly.  My husband opened it and examined it and sure enough one of the three batteries was in the wrong direction.  Sometimes that is how it is for us.  We can seem to have all that we need, yet one thing is out of place and there will be no power.  When we are connected to God, He assures us that all things are possible as we stay hooked up to His divine ways and purposes!   As we continue to abide in Him, we will bear much fruit.  God bless you.



Tuesday, March 21, 2017

 

 

 

Devotional for Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Continue Looking At Christ”
 
 

by Dona Hake

 

“If you look at the world, you’ll be distressed.  If you look within,
you’ll be depressed.   But if you look at Christ, you’ll be at rest.”
Corrie ten Boom

 

 

I have seen  individuals walk through great adversity, and touches my heart when I see them choose to  exhibit characteristics of extreme compassion, and they have a beauty in character…their soul is at rest.    They chose not to quit or be bitter but instead they made a decision to stand back up in their weariness, and they took hold of God’s courage.   What a blessing it is to see such victory, and such testimonies as these can bring courage to our hearts.    These are believers that  endured because they chose to look at Christ, and not their circumstance.   They looked at Christ instead of what the world’s answers were.  They looked at Christ instead of their own ability.   The Lord has shown us in His scriptures that we need to hold fast, and continue to look to Him  that we may have enduring strength.

 

 

Trials can cause us to be stronger people if we permit them to.   As we press in and keep our eyes on Him and seek His wisdom we will see that our patience is being worked and perfected by Him.   Many times in this life things do not go the way we plan  but we must  take courage and try again.   Keep looking to Jesus, permit our soul to take rest, and He will renew our strength.

 

Proverbs 24:16

“For a just man falleth seven times, and riseth up again…”

 

Hebrews 10:36

“Patient endurance is what you need now, so that you will continue to do God’s will. Then you will receive all that he has promised.”

 

Let us live a life of pressing into God that we can walk and run in His enduring strength. Continue to do His  will, step out in new paths that He shows you, and patiently endure that you may receive the blessing of what you are hoping for!  Today I encourage your heart to keep looking to Christ, and live in His rest.



Monday, March 20, 2017

 

 

 

Devotional for Monday, March 20, 2017

“His Command To Save Us”

castle and hiding place

 

by Dona Hake

 

I feel so blessed that I had the opportunity to visit North Wales two different times.    It was such a sweet memorable time in my life.   I can remember the day that I knew in my heart that I was to go on this trip yet I had such a fear of flying.     This fear almost kept me from doing God’s perfect will in my life.   What a joy it was to get on that plane to fly with absolutely no fear in my heart.   This was such a victory for me.  May we always reflect on testimonies in our life in which the Lord delivered us from fears or anything that would hold us back from doing His will.  God desires that we are totally free to serve Him, and that there is nothing on this earth to keep us from doing His will and accomplishing His purposes.

 

There was one thing in particular that I really looked forward to when we arrived in North Wales and that was getting the opportunity to visit the beautiful old castles.   As I walked through these medieval buildings I wondered about the lives that were protected when battles were fought behind those walls.  They were strong and mighty walls that were built with the purpose of protection.  

   

 

We too have a Strong Tower and a Fortress to run to when we face our day of battle.  Our Lord promises us a place to run and hide when the battle starts to rage around us.  I believe He desires that we hide in His place of safety even when the battle is not on.  He desires that we live under the shadow of His wings.  Yet when the heat of life is turned up we are promised that  His great strength and mighty wisdom  will instruct us in our battles.  We must remember to stay under His shadow though.  We cannot throw up our hands and give up for He goes before us and He promises to win the battle.  Praise Him for He is our place of hiding and because of that we can have courage to live this life!  
 
Lord, we thank You and praise You oh Lord, our salvation!   We proclaim that You are our Rock and our Fortress.   You are a very present help in our time of need, and for that we thank You.   In Jesus Name, amen.

 

Psalm 71:3 (ESV)
“Be to me a rock of refuge,
to which I may continually come;
you have given the command to save me,

for you are my rock and my fortress.”


Sunday, March 19, 2017

 

 
Devotional for Sunday, March 19, 2017
“A Simple Rule of Thumb”
 

do onto others

by Dona Hake
 
It seems our world is growing colder all the time.   Actions and words can be so insensitive at times, and we as believers need to guard our hearts and minds that we know we are keeping ourselves in the love walk that the Lord has commanded for us.   I find it so sad at times the insensitivity of the words and actions of people. Words can hurt and bruise deeply and actions many times convey unspoken words and attitudes. Many times people will try to justify themselves for they feel they are just speaking the truth bu it does not matter, if our words do not proceed from a heart of love, they will not be right. Jesus had something important to say about this. I have heard these words of His spoken many times over…”Do onto others as you would have them do onto you.” I love the Message’s translation because it sums it up simply.
 
 

Matthew 7:12 (MSG)

“Here is a simple, rule-of-thumb guide for behavior:
Ask yourself what you want people to do for you,
then grab the initiative and do it for them.”
 
 

I love how this says to “grab the initiative and do it for them.” It is so easy to think about how we feel we should be treated yet do we take hold of the initiative to be thinking about the feelings of others around us? May this remind us to stop and take initiative to do the right thing when we see what the right thing is!

 

With the help of God’s love, He can show us the needs of people around us. Many times we just need to stay aware of what God is seeing, and be aware of many times our lives can sadly become self-centered.   May we be sensitive and aware of the needs around us. I think it would be a good habit to ponder our words before we speak them, and think about our actions. Think to yourself, “Is this how I would want to be spoken to or is this how I would want someone to act in my presence.” 

May we make this scripture a prayer over our lives.   Also, it you have someone in your life that has mistreated you or hurting you with words, these are powerful words to pray for them in order that their eyes would be open to their behavior. I believe these words spoken by Jesus are those of power and they are meant for us to live by!


Saturday, March 18, 2017

 

 

Devotional for Saturday, March 18,2017
“He Hears Our Prayer”

 

Prayer God hears

by Dona Hake

 

Today I am sharing  from Psalm 116.  The psalmist begins the chapter by exclaiming, “I love the Lord, for He heard my voice…”   He proceeded to say that he knew God’s ear was toward him and then he said, “I will call on Him as long as I live!”     I love how the psalmist exclaims that he just knew that God heard his voice.    Many times people experience the struggle of believing God  hears their  voice simply because they are not seeing the results to what they are praying about.   Oh that we would believe that our Lord hears us, and my we learn to wait upon Him, and know that His ways and timing are perfect!

 

You see this psalmist understood that death was staring him in the face and he had no where to turn. I am sure that what he was going through was terrifying and he stopped, and reminded himself of who and what his God was all about.    This is what Psalm 116:7-9 says.
 

“Return to your rest, my soul,
for the Lord has been good to you.
For you, Lord, have delivered me from death,
my eyes from tears,
my feet from stumbling,
that I may walk before the Lord

in the land of the living.”

 

I believe this chapter in Psalms can serve to remind us that in any trying circumstances we absolutely must call on the Lord for our help, and we must purpose to remind ourselves of His love and care over us.  As he said, “Return to your rest, my soul for the Lord has been good to you…”   We too need to remind ourselves of these truths that our souls may be calmed.   As we walk before the Lord in the land of the living, let us rejoice in His mighty works He has done in our lives!



Friday, March 17, 2017

 
 
 
Devotional for Friday, March 17, 2017
“He Gave Us a Different Way Peace”
 
by Dona Hake
 
Today I was reminded once again that my peace must be guarded and nothing is worth causing me to lose it.   I personally feel that social media is such a tool yet it can be abused by people.   I have found myself at times being aggravated by what I read at times but then I have seen so many wonderful things in the world of social media.    It is sad though for words can be published that can cause hurt, offense, and misunderstandings.     I have learned to wisely  “scroll on by” those posts that steer my soul in the wrong direction.     Everyday we are all faced with having to deal with situations or individuals that may tempt us to lose our peace whether it be while we are on our jobs, social media, etc….    The Lord told us there would be those days of trials and tribulations, but  we have been equipped to deal with all things that we may be faced with.
 
So this morning I was browsing my Facebook, and there it was again,  two different individuals posting disrespectful posts against my President.   Ugh.  Along with these troubling posts  were threads of rude and disrespectful reinforcing comments.    One thing I have purposed to do on social media is steer away from discussing politics although there have been times I have.   I tried to always use discretion.   I feel we need to show respect to those we disagree with and learn how to communicate best we can.   Yet sometimes if things are getting out of hand it is our responsibility to keep ourselves guarded.      So I did…I made the specific adjustments that these individuals posts will no longer show on my feed.    Sometimes simple adjustments do a world of good!!! Was it hard?… not really, because I wanted to do it before and I stopped myself.  All along it has been my hope that the individuals would not continue posting such disrespectful things .    Sometimes we need to illuminate anything that is  tempting our minds to be thinking about other’s opinions especially if they grate against the Word of God.
 
 
I walked away from making these adjustments, and great peace  flooded my soul.   Interesting… isn’t it?   For me things like this will usually trouble me for I will wonder if I did the right thing or not.  I never want to offend anyone but my desire to please the Lord means more to me than pleasing people. You see the cost of our peace  that was so freely given to us was paid with the great price of Jesus shedding His blood for us. Yet included in the cost we may be called upon to just walk away from things and associations so that we can guard that precious peace.   Please hear this correctly for I believe with all my heart that we should always seek reconciliation with people but this issue was not a matter of reconciliation.   Many would save themselves much grief in this world if they would learn to just walk away from agitations, and choose to hold fast to peace, love and maintain a heart of forgiveness.    I began to reflect on what was going on within my soul, and the Lord brought the scripture to my remembrance…
 

Proverbs 19:11

Good sense and discretion make a man slow to anger, And it is his honor and glory to overlook a transgression or an offense without seeking revenge and harboring resentment.
 
 

Today I just want to challenge your heart with thinking about the importance of guarding your peace with all diligence.   Be careful what you permit your soul to see and hear.  Sometimes we just need to walk away from some things.   The Lord directs each of our steps, and I praise Him for His wonderful peace that His Son paid to obtain it for us!



Thursday, March 16, 2017

 
 
Devotional for Tuesday, March 14, 2017
“Do You Hear His Voice?”
 
my sheep
 
by Dona Hake
 
 
Have you ever heard when someone jokingly or not so jokingly says that an individual has selective hearing?     I can remember one of our little dogs that was getting up in age and he really was losing his hearing.   I found it sad yet it was amazing to me at times that there were certain things that he never missed.   One of his favorite snacks was a fresh carrot, and if  he heard us get the bag of carrots out or one of us bit into a carrot, he would high tail to wherever we were.    But then there were times that I also knew he heard but decided to ignore me (knowing he would get away with it) …I have to admit it was kind of funny seeing a little dog play tricks on me like that.
 
So exactly what is selective hearing?   Selective hearing is the capability to block out sounds and noise. It is the notion of ignoring certain things in one’s surrounding environment. Many times you can see this in small children. They may tend to hear only the fun and exciting things, but things such as “It’s time to clean up your toys, and get ready for your nap.” may not be one of those things that is eagerly heard.

 

 Today let us ask ourselves the question if there may be times that we practice selective hearing with the Lord, and we do not even realize we are doing this.  Sometimes bad habits such as this can happen quicker than what we would admit to ourselves.  There are times we can all identify where we are reading the Word or hearing the Word of God, and our spirit has been pricked by the power of the spoken Word of God. We just know it was God specifically dealing with our heart yet we walk away and do not take heed. We may go home from church and proclaim what a good word our Pastor shared yet not take heed to it, and apply it to our life. This is indeed a form of selective hearing and lack of being a doer of the Word.   We need to be very careful and cautious over our hearts that we are not guilty of this. I found several translations of John 10:27 enlightening so I will share them with you for your meditation.

 

“The sheep that are My own hear and are listening to My voice;
and I know them, and they follow Me.” (AMP)
 
My sheep respond to my voice, and I know who they are. They follow me…” (GW)
 
” My sheep recognize my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.” (TLB)
 

“My sheep respond as they hear My voice; I know them intimately, and they follow Me.” (The Voice)

 
The word *know* defined is to be able to distinguish, as one from another. The Lord wants that we KNOW Him and He desires we KNOW His voice!   Today I ask you are you listening to hear if He is calling your name?   Have you felt a gentle tug on your heart, and you wonder if it is Him?   Let us learn to listen and recognize His precious voice and leading in our lives.  Today I desire to encourage your heart to be listening closely for His voice. Many times His voice is loud and clear and many times it is a mere whisper. Be quick to recognize it and respond. God truly desires this intimacy with us as we heed to His Words and walk willingly along side of Him as He gently leads us.
 


Wednesday, March 15, 2017

 
 


Monday, March 13, 2017

 
 
Devotional for Wednesday, March 13, 2017
 
“The Precious Possession of a Wise Man”
 
 
 
 
but the precious possession
 
by Dona Hake
 
 
The diligent hand proceeds from the heart that desires to live productively in everything they put their hand to. It is so wonderful  to experience the fruit of our accomplishment after we have done what we know we have set our heart to do! 

 

A farmer or a person that loves to do vegetable gardening totally understands the importance of diligence to maintain a healthy and thriving garden. After of summer of diligently weeding and tending a garden or crop, the harvest is going to come. Once it comes one may desire to freeze or can the abundance of their fruits. Whatever the choice of preserving it, it must be done, and there is no time to waste. It is such a blessing to pull a vegetable out of your freezer or a canned veggie or fruit in the cold of winter. Oh the joy of enjoying the fruit of our diligent, hard working hands!

 
Our time is so valuable and precious, and we must purpose to never waste a minute of our day.  I have a three minute egg timer that is glass, and it is secured to an old antique bobbin. As the sand flows through it, there is a measure of time that passes.   Last evening I used it to keep track to something that needed to simmer for three minutes on my stove.  What hit me was how quickly three minutes flew by.   So it is with our time…it goes by so quickly, and we need to make sure we are using it ever to wisely. This little  glass timer also reminds me that once that sand flows through it that a particular “time” has passed and I can not get it back. Many times people fail to realize the time they are living and they are missing opportunities for some reason or other. The time goes and so has the opportunity. Just as opportunities come and they call for our diligence in a specific time, there are also other things in life that require our diligence in order that we sow, reap, and enjoy blessings.
 
 I encourage you today to desire the heart and hands of the diligent and be blessed. Guard you time and spend it wisely. Diligence is a good thing and it leads to abundant blessing!

 

 Proverbs 21:5 Amplified Bible

“The thoughts of the [steadily] diligent
tend only to plenteousness…



6 Responses to “Devotional”

  1. Lisa Viands says:

    This is a good way of teaching the kids to forgive each other(Matt. 5:7). I like the power of this gentle scripture and lesson… Thanks!!

  2. Selena Neely says:

    Ralph &I are really enjoying your devotional together.

  3. Selena Neely says:

    Oh, what a wonderful reminder! I want to break the magnifing glass of worry and trust God for each step I take.

  4. Dona Hake says:

    It is interesting Selena how the more we worry the bigger and more magnified things get in our minds. Oh how important it is to trust our God for the smallest of things! Thank you for sharing!