Saturday, December 27, 2008


By Jeremy Burkes

1st Corinthians 5:17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

Most of us have made New Year's resolutions at one time or another. There are all sorts of resolutions, to lose weight, to try to be a better person, to break some bad habit, or to spend more time with family are just a few.
Some of us even make resolutions to pray more or to study our Bible more and then we begin to fade as the year goes on. We start with a lot of enthusiasm but then we become tired.
Our entire year would be much better if we would start out with God in the proper place in our lives and end up with Him still in the proper place. You may not make resolutions but as you enter the New Year make an increased effort to keep focused on God and His will.
Happy New Year to all of you.

Monday, December 22, 2008


BY Jeremy Burkes
A Baby born in a manger,Born to the world a stranger,
To save us from sin's danger,
Died on a cross,to save the lost.
He rose on the third day,to prepare the way,
that we might have life,to live with His Father on High.

We wish you all a very Merry Christmas and may God bless you greatly in the coming New Year. Walk with Jesus as you walk through the new year.
We will probably not post any new devotionals until next Monday. We appreciate you sharing the blessings of this site with us.
Shiloh Baptist Church

Thursday, December 18, 2008


John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
"Be sure and keep your receipt". How many times have you heard that? In addition to manufacturer's warranties and guaranties most reputable retailers will take and item you are not satisfied with back if you keep your receipt. Usually there is a time limit on bringing the item back.
In past years I have had to return some items because they were defective or would not work as advertised. I have bought things that quit working - right after the warranty ran out. I have even taken chances and bought things that were not guaranteed at all. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't, that is just a chance you take.
The greatest guarantee in the world is to those who believe in Jesus Christ. It is a forever guarantee, it is life everlasting. You don't have to have a receipt, God keeps up with it all. He has the record of your salvation. You can't lose it, it can't be stolen, you can't wear it out. It is forever.
I am a firm believer in the security of the believer. I believe that God is able to keep everything that is committed to Him. If you have committed your life to Christ, it is in God's hands and that is a permanent situation.
Isn't it great to know that is a guarantee that will never run out?

Wednesday, December 17, 2008


John 9:5 As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.

There are a lot of things I really love about Christmas. The thing I like best is that for a short while the whole world is focused on the birth of our Savior whether they believe in Him or not.
I like the family gatherings, the food and so many other things. I usually let my wife do the decorating but I help and do what I am told to make things festive. We don't put up a lot of outside decorations and lights but we really do enjoy riding around and looking at the lights that others have.
There are many beautiful light displays, (I sometimes wonder how they afford their utility bills) in lots of places. Some cities make an annual effort to have a "festival of lights" or something like that and they are really beautiful.
Many have gone away from true Christmas themes and gone to less traditional light shows but I still like the Christian ones best.There are lights of just about every color, all of them pretty, but I think I like the natural ones best.
When you ride around and look at the lights this year, regardless of how they are displayed, try to think of the most beautiful light of all, "...The light of the World", Jesus Christ.
God gave us the gift of Light through Jesus, wasn't that a beautiful gift.

Monday, December 15, 2008


By Jeremy Burkes

Genesis 28:16 And Jacob awaked out of his sleep, and he said, Surely the LORD is in this place; and I knew it not.

Have you ever been in the presence of God and not realized it? Most of us have. It could be that we are not looking for God most of the time if we are honest with ourselves.
I'll let you in on a little secret that everyone should know, God is everywhere. We are told in the book of Proverbs-
Proverbs 15:3 The eyes of the LORD are in every place, beholding the evil and the good.
Remember, whether we realize it or not, everything we say, everything we do, and everywhere we go, God is there. Have you been aware of God's presence lately?

Friday, December 12, 2008


by Jeremy Burkes

Psalms 116:1-2 I love the LORD, because he hath heard my voice and my supplications. (2) Because he hath inclined his ear unto me, therefore will I call upon him as long as I live.

There are many reasons to love God. One of the reasons is that He answers prayer. When you talk to God in prayer He hears you and He answers you. Sometimes it is the answer you want and sometimes it is not the answer you want. We need to learn to accept God's answer no matter what it is.
Why do we love God? I love God because He first loved me. I love God because He hears and answers my prayers. I love God because He listens to me. There are many reasons we love God. Think of the ones that you can apply to yourself.

Thursday, December 11, 2008


John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

John 8:58 Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.

It seems today that when someone makes something they plan on it being obsolete shortly after it comes on the market. They can then sell the new version. Some of the imported items we buy don't even have to become obsolete, they fall apart soon after you assemble them.(If you can understand the assembly instructions that come with them.)
Jesus is a gift that will last forever. In this statement He makes that clear. Before Abraham was, I am. He did not say I was but I am. Jesus is eternal, there was nothing before Him and there is no after Him.
When Moses asked God His name he answered, I Am. I once heard a preacher explain that in very simple terms. He said ,"Jesus Is, He always was Is, He is is, and He always will be is."
It is very comforting to me to know that I will never need an new version of my Savior. I do not need to upgrade. He will not fall apart or fade away. He is a gift that will last forever.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008


John 6:35 And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.

I am sure you have received some very practical gifts in your life. I am sure you have also received some that were not very practical at all. Sometimes it is not the expense of a gift that makes it special but the thoughtfulness of it. You see something and you fit it to someone and you just know that they can use it and will enjoy it.
Several years ago my daughter gave me a small ratchet and socket set along with the other presents she gave me. I can not count the times that the sockets and ratchet have been useful to me. Every time I use them I think of how thoughtful it was of my daughter to get them for me. It was a very practical gift.
I am a little cautious about giving out too much information on the inter net so I don't use my regular credit cards. There was some software and a few other things I wanted and last year my son gave me a prepaid Visa card for Christmas so that I could purchase them without worrying about identity theft. It was a thoughtful and practical gift.
Sometimes in our zeal we can think something is practical but we can be badly mistaken. Once a group raised money to send plumbing fixtures to a mission field. They were very successful in raising the money and were able to ship a whole cargo container of plumbing fixtures. The only problem was that they had no running water in the village they were sent to. They were completely useless.
Jesus was the perfect gift, The Bread of Life. The world is filled with spiritual hunger and Jesus is the only one who can satisfy that urgent need. What could be more practical than sharing Jesus with someone who is spiritually starved?

Tuesday, December 9, 2008


John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

One of the characteristics of a perfect gift is that it is something a person needs. I can remember many Christmases in the past when I not only got toys and candy and fruit and things I wanted but there was usually a package or two of socks and underwear and maybe some warm gloves for winter that I really needed.
I can't remember a lot of the gifts I recieved as a child but I can remember two because they were gifts I felt I really needed. One was a pair of fur lined gloves, I needed them to play outside in the cold. The other was a pair of overshoes, I needed them to play on the ice and snow (which we had a lot of that year). These gifts were special because they were something I thought I really needed.
Be careful when you pick a gift that you think someone needs. My wife might need a new mop or broom or something else around the house but it would not be very smart of me to give them to her for Christmas.
There is one gift that we all need. Sometimes we think we aren't getting what we deserve and we complain. If we study the scriptures we know what we really deserve and no one really wants that. God knows what we deserve, "the wages of sin is death," but God loves us and He also knows what we need, "the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord". God gave us the gift we need more than anything else.
Jesus is the perfect gift. The wonderful thing about Jesus is that the more we share Him with the world, the more we have of Him.

Monday, December 8, 2008


John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

The next few days I will discuss the Perfect Gift. As we get nearer to Christmas we try to think of the perfect gift and sometimes we end up giving gifts that are way less than perfect. In my life I have received some great gifts, and some that were less than spectacular. So far I have been blessed in the fact that I never received a Chia Pet. This year I received a very special gift early. When we were growing up our family took pictures but instead of photographs we made slides. My sister took all these slides and had them placed on a CD and shared them with our family. If there is such thing as the perfect gift this would be pretty close. A gift of memories, a gift of bringing back special moments of the past. I have spent hours just looking at them. I have promised to take some of them and make a slide show and put them to music and I still intend to but right now I just enjoy looking at them (over and over).
I am sure you have given or received a gift that was nearly perfect.
If you have received Jesus into your heart you have received the perfect gift, and it keeps on giving. Pray for me as I continue to write these devotionals. I will be sharing more on the perfect gift in the next few days. I will try to share some of the things that make a perfect gift.

Friday, December 5, 2008


Psalms 90:9For all our days are passed away in thy wrath: we spend our years as a tale that is told.

This verse has always been special to me, probably because I enjoy writing. My life story would probably never be a best seller but there have been some interesting chapters. One of the things I enjoy most is getting together with family or old friends and reminiscing about times past.
As in most lives there are a lot of stories that I would rather leave untold. As we look back we sometimes think, if only I had done differently. The chapters of the past are already written and as much as we might daydream about the future it is uncertain at best. Most of the time it doesn't come out even close to the way we imagine it.
What we have is today. Think of today as a blank page that will be filled with your story. Today is the beginning of the rest of your life. What you do today will make a difference if you work at it. No matter what has been written on the pages of your life in the past you have a wonderful opportunity to write the rest of your future.
What kind of story do you plan to write? Maybe you should make an outline for your story. Some people call it setting goals. When we fail to set goals we just randomly write our life story (that's why sometimes some of the things we did in the past don't make sense).
When you start you day make some plans. Plan to smile a little more. Plan to be a little nicer. Plan to do something to enhance someone else's life and yours too. Plan to let go of some things that are holding you back. Plan to learn something new. Plan some special time with those close to you and plan something special for yourself. Make sure to plan some time to spend with God. Plan to share your Christian faith with someone else.
If you begin to write an outline like this for your day, the story of your life will certainly be a beautiful one.

Thursday, December 4, 2008


James 2:15 If a brother or sister be naked, and destitute of daily food, (16) And one of you say unto them, Depart in peace, be ye warmed and filled; notwithstanding ye give them not those things which are needful to the body; what doth it profit? (17) Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone.
In these verses of scripture James is making a strong statement. Basicly what James is saying is, "Action speaks louder than words."I could give many illustrations or examples but the one below says it much better than I could.

Sharing Our Coat
In an article on China in Eternity Magazine, the writer records a story of Christian love and kindness. "A Chinese cook was put into prison one night. It was bitterly cold. About 26 degrees below zero. He had on his padded clothes and a big fur coat. But a heathen man who was later thrown in with him had no wraps at all. The Christian man began to pray that God would get him out of prison. While he was praying, it seemed God spoke to him. `I won't hear your prayer until you've taken off your fur coat and given it to this man who had none.' `But if I do that, I'll be frozen to death by morning,' the man thought. `Well, if you don't,' he seemed to hear God's reply, `this man will be dead before morning.' So he took off his fur coat and gave it to the man and his life was saved. Later on at a Christian gathering in Communist China, the heathen man who had received the coat got up and gave his testimony. "I am here today because a man shared his coat with me in prison." People are in need. People are suffering. The winning of souls to Christ could well depend on how willing we are to share our coat. (copied)

Remember as we go into the Christmas season what the season is really about. We were given the greatest gift ever when God sent His Son to us to be our Savior. We had a great need and Jesus came so He could sacrifice Himself to fill it.
We live in a country and in a time when we have been blessed with much. When we see people in need it is easy to blame them for their own predicament. Usually they are at least partly to blame because of the decisions they have made in their life. Regardless of how they got there, the fact is they are still there.
This Christmas Season why not ask God to show you an area where you can make a difference. It might be helping to distribute food baskets for your Church. There may be a family that you know of who could use some help or encouragement. If you don't have a specific area you could help in you can always contribute to the Salvation Army. They are one Charity that really does make a difference in people's lives.
When you do it, don't do it so you can feel good about it. Don't do it so you won't feel guilty. Do it for the sake of those in need and so that maybe their greatest need might someday be met by the one who filled our greatest need. Do it so they might come to know Jesus.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008


Eph 3:19 And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might BE FILLED with all the fulness of God.
As I was looking for a subject for today's devotional I ran across the following in my files:

VACUUM OR VICTORY A man who drank heavily was converted to Christ and lived victoriously for several weeks. One day as he passed the open door of a tavern, the pungent odor drifting out aroused his old appetite for liquor. Just then he saw this sign in the window of a nearby cafe: "All the buttermilk you can drink--25 cents!" Dashing inside, he ordered one glass, then another, and still another. After finishing the third he walked past the saloon and was no longer tempted. He was so full of buttermilk that he had no room for that which would be injurious to him. The lesson is clear: to be victorious over our evil desires, we must leave no opportunity for them to repossess us. Dwight L. Moody once demonstrated the principle like this: "Tell me," he said to his audience, "how can I get the air out of the tumbler I have in my hand?" One man said, "Suck it out with a pump." But the evangelist replied, "That would create a vacuum and shatter it." Finally after many suggestions, moody picked up a pitcher and quietly filled the glass with water. "There," he said, "all the air is now removed." He then explained that victory for the child of God does not come by working hard to eliminate sinful habits, but rather by allowing the Holy Spirit to take full possession.

Normally when I use something of someone else's I try to give them credit but I am not sure where I got this from but it does make a good point.

WE we become filled with the fullness of God there is no room for sin and the world. The way we become filled with the fullness of God is to know the love of Christ. Since the love of Christ is so great that it surpasses our human knowledge, we must by faith believe that the love of Christ is so amazing that we must allow it to consume us. I honestly do not know the secret to doing that. I do know that when I think about how much Jesus loves us it sure makes all the other things in my life seem less important.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008


Psalms 33:12 BLESSED IS THE NATION whose God is the LORD; and the people whom he hath chosen for his own inheritance.

The average age of the world's greatest civilizations has been 200 years, we read, and those nations progressed through this sequence:
From Bondage to Spiritual Faith - From Spiritual Faith to Great Courage
From Courage to Liberty - From Liberty to Abundance
From Abundance to Selfishness - From Selfishness to Complacency
From Complacency to Apathy - From Apathy to Dependency
From Dependency back again into bondage.
A few years ago, this wonderful United States of ours was 200 years old. The above cycle is not inevitable - it depends on every one of us and on our children and their children, to see that we do not follow that cycle. If the above cycle is applied to a business it just might explain why so many work hard and get about halfway through the cycle and then there sets in the lower half leading to failure. It would appear that people, businesses and nations cannot stand prosperity. (copied)
For weeks we have been hearing about the great economic crises our Nation is facing. Financial experts were predicting that Christmas shopping would be slim and the day after Thanksgiving which is usually the biggest shopping day of the year would probably turn out to be a big disappointment for retailers.
If you have been to a place of business since Thanksgiving day you have probably noticed that people have not seemed to slack up a bit. Were the economic forecasters wrong about the dismal state of our economy? Were they wrong to think that people have reached their spending and credit limits, at least the ones that they can reasonably expect to pay? I don't think so.
I personally think, and this is just my own personal opinion, that we have passed from selfishness into complacency. I believe that we are only a couple of quick steps from dependency and then to bondage. I believe we are there because people have become addicted to things. We have become consumers instead of producers.We don't want to accomplish things, we want to have things and we want to have them whether they are practical or affordable of not. We are not ready to face the facts that we can't spend what we don't have especially to purchase what we don't need. I am certainly not pointing my finger at anyone because I am as guilty as everyone else.
The greatest danger does not lie in our being a generation of consumers. The greatest danger lies in not giving God the place he deserves in our lives. Great nations have failed when their faith was placed in riches, in government, in pleasure or other things instead of having faith in God and honoring Him with what we have.
Please leave us a comment or if you have a question we would like to try to answer it. Your input is appreciated.

Monday, December 1, 2008


Nehemiah 4:10 And Judah said, The strength of the bearers of burdens is decayed, and there is much rubbish; so that we are not able to build the wall.

Nehemiah and his people were trying to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem but there was so much rubbish that they were not able to start building until they cleaned it up. We know that they eventually did get the walls rebuilt.
Have you ever noticed how much trash a family can produce. We do not have house to house garbage pickup so each morning I take out the main garbage bag as I leave the house and take it to the dumpster. Some people say they would rather have their garbage picked up but I would not. They only pick up the garbage one or two times per week in most places and I am not that fond of living with my garbage for a week. Usually one day a week I gather up the extra trash and make a special trip to the dumpster to get rid of all of it only to start again. Imagine if you never took out any trash. Your home would become unlivable. You would not be able even to get around in it after awhile, not to mention the odor and the unsanitary conditions.
The same is really true with our spiritual lives as well. We sometimes forget to take out the mental and spiritual garbage that hinders us. We may hold on to a secret sin, we may harbor a long time grudge, we may have too much pride. If we continue to let these things build up then "there is much rubbish" and we can't serve God the way we should. Once we go too long we have a much bigger job trying to get things right and cleaned up in our lives.
We should start each day taking the garbage out by confessing our sins to God, asking forgiveness and trying to build upon the day. The garbage may still come in but it sure is easier to get rid of it one day at a time.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008


By Jeremy Burkes
Thanksgiving, a time of turkey,Pie, family and games on TV
A time of reflecting on life and the year,Of going afield and hunting for deer,
A time of leftovers, stuffing over and over,Until we are ready to crawl under the cover,
After we've set in front of a ballgame with a plate in our lap,We are finally ready for that afternoon nap.
Whatever you do, have a happy thanksgiving from the Shiloh Church family to yours.
May God bless you. We all have much to be thankful for and let us not forget to give thanks to Him who has blessed us so much.
We will not have a new devotional until next Monday. You can go to to read previous devotionals or to leave us a comment. Why not go back and read some of the earlier devotionals. It is amazing how you can pick up something new when you read something more than once.
God bless you and have a happy thanksgiving.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008


1 Corinthians 14:15 What is it then? I will pray with the spirit, and I will pray with the understanding also: I will sing with the spirit, and I will sing with the understanding also.

Much emphasis is placed on the Music and singing in our Worship Services in Church. How much attention do we really pay to the words in the songs we sing each Sunday. You may not be familiar with all the songs mentioned in the list below but I am sure you can think of others that we sing- but fail to put into practice.

1. We sing "Sweet Hour of Prayer" and are content with 5-10 minutes a day.
2. We sing "Onward Christian Soldiers" and wait to be drafted into His service.
3. We sing "O for a Thousand Tongues to Sing" and don't use the one we have.
4. We sing "There Shall be Showers of Blessing" but do not come when it rains.
5. We sing "Blest Be the Tie That Binds" and let the least little offense sever it.
6. We sing "Serve the Lord With Gladness" and gripe about all we have to do.
7. We sing "I Love To Tell the Story" and never mention it at all.
8. We sing "We're Marching to Zion" but fail to march to worship or school.
9. We sing "Cast Thy Burden on the Lord" and worry ourselves into a nervous breakdown.
10. We sing "The Whole Wide World for Jesus" and never invite our next-door neighbor.
11. We sing "O Day of Rest and Gladness" and wear ourselves on traveling, cutting grass or playing golf on Sunday.
12. We sing "Throw Out the Lifeline" and content ourselves with throwing out a fishing line.
When you are singing pay attention to the words as well as the melody. There are some great inspirational messages in the Hymns in your songbooks.

Monday, November 24, 2008


Ecclesiastes 10:10 If the iron be blunt, and he do not whet the edge, then must he put to more strength: but wisdom is profitable to direct.

This is a simple statement but it is very truthful. Have you ever tried to cut a tree with a dull ax or to cut a piece of meat with a dull knife. You have to put forth much more effort.
Once a man was cutting a tree with a dull axe and he didn't seem to be making much progress. Someone asked him why he didn't stop and sharpen it. "I have too many trees to cut to take time to sharpen my ax," He answered. Truthfully if he had taken the time to sharpen the ax his work would have gone much more quickly.
We are like that in our own lives sometimes. We want to get ahead on our jobs or in school without taking time to make ourselves better.
We can also be much like that in our spiritual lives. A student in a Sunday School class may sometimes think it dull because he is the one who hasn't prepared. You should not wait until you get to church to try to gain spiritual insight. It should be something you work at every day. Try to stay spiritually sharp through prayer, Bible Study and putting into practice what you learn. It might surprise you how much better you handle difficulties when you keep yourself sharp.

Friday, November 21, 2008


Matthew 6:31-34 Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? (32) (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. (33) But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.(34) Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.

Someone once said that worry is like rocking in a rocking chair. It keeps you busy but it doesn't get you anywhere. Actually rocking in a rocking chair is rather relaxing and enjoyable so you are at least having a good time. I think worry is more like being on a treadmill. Not the usual treadmill you might see at the gym but more like the type in a doctor's office that they use for a "stress" test. It will wear you out and wear you down but it won't get you anywhere.
Worry is paying interest on tomorrow's problems. Anyone can worry but it takes a special person to have real faith.
Most of the things we worry about fall into three categories.


There is really no need to worry about these things. If you can do something about it - do it and quit worrying. Worrying will not change the outcome.


We should try to be prepared for the unpleasant things that are going to happen. We should pray, we should do everything we can to prepare ourselves but if they are going to happen anyway worry will not change things one bit. Many people worry about things like getting older. I have come to the point in my life that it is a chief goal of mine, to keep getting older and if that doesn't work our I am prepared for that too.

I heard of a woman who lay awake almost every night worried about burglars breaking into her home. One night she heard a noise downstairs and as usual she sent her husband (who obviously didn't get much sleep either) down to investigate. He turned on the light in the living room and there he was, a burglar. The burglar was about as frightened at being caught as the man was to catch him. He turned to run but the man grabbed him and held him.
The burglar pleaded, "Please let me go.""No," the man said harshly, "My wife has kept me awake for twenty years expecting you and you are not leaving until she meets you."
Hopefully you will never have a burglar and if you do he might not be as afraid as this one was, but the woman wasted twenty years of good sleep being afraid he would come.
Most things of this nature that we worry about will never happen. If they do, they move up into the category of things that are going to happen anyway.
Get off the worry treadmill. Trust the Lord with your soul and everything else will eventually come out alright.

Thursday, November 20, 2008


Matthew 16:24 Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, AND FOLLOW ME.

Too many of us want to shop for just the right cross instead of taking up the cross of self-denial that Jesus referred to.
Some want a padded cross that's not too heavy. They want to serve the Lord but not if it causes them to make sacrifices and put forth great effort.
Some want a small cross that they can keep concealed. They don't want to draw attention to their Christianity. They want to be secret agents in the Lord's army.
Some want a decorated engraved and jeweled cross so they can flaunt it before the world and attract attention to themselves. It is not about us. It is about Jesus.
Bearing the true cross of Christ means denying self. The cross of Christ was a plain wooden cross that takes a lot of effort to carry. Thankfully we will never have to carry it alone. Jesus will help us to bear it. His "yoke is easy" and His "burden is light."
Don't go shopping for an easier cross. Just take up the one Jesus asked us to carry.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Go Ahead and Do It

James 4:17 Therefore to him that KNOWETH TO DO GOOD, and doeth it not, to him it is sin.

People are sometimes hard to get along with. You know that you are supposed to love them but they sometimes really make you angry, go ahead and do it. Love them anyway because it is the good thing to do.
It is hard to put forth great effort to get a program going or to make something a success and see someone get all the credit. Go ahead and do it. It is the right thing to do.
Some people don't deserve forgiveness for what they have done to us. Go ahead and do it. Forgivness is what they need and what we need to practice.
Sometimes it is hard to speak kind words and words of encouragement. People seem to ignore or reject them. Go ahead and do it. It will have a good effect on you even if it doesn't have one on the person you are speaking too.
We sometimes hold our peace and do not witness to others. They might already be saved or they may reject what we have to say. Go ahead and do it. They may come to know Jesus.
Our ideas may fail so we don't share them with others or pursue them ourselves. Go ahead and do it. If you never try you can never succeed.
I could go on with many other examples but you are the only one who knows the good you can do. Go ahead and do it.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


by Jeremy Burkes

Psalm 116:12 What shall I render unto the LORD for all his benefits toward me?

The definition of Thanksgiving is the act of showing thanks, and the showing of gratitude for something.
We've all said thank you to someone. We are taught as little children to say thank you. People say it to be polite when you do something as simple as holding the door for them or hand them something. If we are polite and courteous it is said a lot through our lives.
How often do you say it to God? When we say it to God it takes on a deeper meaning. It is more than being polite. If we are really thankful for what Jesus did for us it means giving Him our life as a gift of thanksgiving.
This psalm asks us what we shall render unto the Lord. What do we have to give the Lord that He doesn't already have? We can give him nothing but ourselves. He doesn't want part of us, He wants all of us.
There are truly many things to thank God for. We can thank Him for a new day, for our family, for our health, and so many other things. When we offer Him thanks we give Him Glory for what He has already done for us.

Psalm 48:1 A Song and Psalm for the sons of Korah. Great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised in the city of our God, in the mountain of his holiness.

Remember as you pray, offer a prayer of sincere thanksgiving.

Monday, November 17, 2008


1 Corinthians 12:20 But now are they many members, yet but one body.

Sometimes we feel insignificant compared to others when involved in the Lord's work. I would advise you to go to the above scripture and read the previous scriptures along with it. I could have easily printed them in with this devotional but sometimes things mean a little more if you have to do a little searching to find them.
Some people feel like if they are not the preacher or they are not playing the piano or leading the singing that they will not be missed in the church services. We should feel that our presence is important and that we are a part of something much bigger than the individual parts, just like our hand is part of the body or our ear or our eyes. The task that we are doing may not depend at the time on a particular part of the body but it is certainly good to have them all present.
No preacher can preach his best sermon to an empty pew. No matter how much talent a song director has he can not lead empty pews to sing. We should have the attitude that our presence is important. When we are not there we are missed.
A little boy was away from home on vacation and the family was unable to go to church for some reason. Since they were not able to go to a regular church service they had devotionals in their motel room. The boy was asked to lead in prayer and he prayed, "Please, God, help my Sunday School teacher and class be able to get along alright without me this morning."
When you are not present in Sunday School and Church you may be missed more than you realize.

Thursday, November 13, 2008


Nehemiah 6:3 And I sent messengers unto them, saying, I am doing a GREAT WORK, so that I cannot come down: why should the work cease, whilst I leave it, and come down to you?

Nehemiah was rebuilding the walls of Jerusalem and realized that the work was a great work. I think there are lots of times that we get so caught up in the day to day routine of our lives that we forget that God has placed us here to do a great work.
A large church was under construction and a man passing by stopped one man and asked him what he was doing. "I am mixing mortar for the stone," he answered. He asked another man the same question. His answer was, "I am a stonemason and I am cutting and laying stone." There was an old woman inside with a broom sweeping up the debris and he asked her the same question. With a smile on her face and evident enthusiasm she answered, "I am helping to build a great cathedral for the Glory of God."
If someone asked you what you are doing, how would you answer. Perhaps you would say, "I am working to make a living." "I am just trying to get by day by day." There are a lot of answers that you might give.
How about if you are a parent. Wouldn't it be great to answer, "I am raising a family for the Glory of God."
A man who worked in a meat packing plant was a very strong witness and witnessed for Jesus every chance he got. When people would ask him what he did he would answer, "I am a witness for Christ, I just pack pork to finance it."
We are a part of God's plan. There is great work for us to do. It would be wonderful if more of us would be as Nehemiah and say, "I am doing a great work and I can't come down."

Wednesday, November 12, 2008


1 Samuel 15:23For [rebellion] the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, he hath also rejected thee from king.

When we examine this verse of scripture it has some pretty sobering implications. Rebellion is something we might think of as being pretty serious. We know how harmful it is when our children rebel against parental authority. We know how much trouble this usually leads to but we don't think too much about stubbornness.
I know people that seem to take pride in being stubborn. There is nothing wrong with having strong convictions and standing firm on that which is right but when we are stubborn for the sake of being stubborn and getting our way it becomes serious sin.
Many times God deals with us and instead of submitting to Him and His will we just harden our hearts as Pharaoh did and we become stubborn. I am reminded of a little girl who was told to sit on the little stool her mother made her sit on for punishment. She went to the stool and just stood there. Finally her mother told her that if she didn't sit down she would get a spanking. The little girl sat on the stool and looked up at her mother and said, "I may be sitting on the outside but I'm still standing on the inside."
We can be much like that with God. On the outside we are submissive but on the inside we are still resisting the will of God. Let's quit being stubborn and let God mold us into the instruments He can use for His Glory.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


by Jeremy Burkes

Psalm 95:2-3 Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving, and make a joyful noise unto him with psalms. (3) For the LORD is a great God, and a great King above all gods.

Are you thankful when you pray? Do you approach God with a thanksgiving in your heart? We have so much to be thankful for. God has answered so many of our prayers and blessed us in so many ways.
Too often when we pray we want instant results. We must realize that God doesn't work on our schedules. We are used to microwave popcorn, instant pudding and fast food. God is not in the pudding business, God works according to His own schedule.
When we pray we should pray with thanksgiving. Thankful for every blessing we've already received and thankful for every prayer God has answered in the past.
Let us come before His presence with thanksgiving and a truly thankful heart.

Monday, November 10, 2008


Acts 4:13 Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were unlearned and ignorant men, they marvelled; and they took knowledge of them, that they had been with Jesus.

Peter and John had gone to the temple. People saw them perform miracles and were astonished but it wasn't the miracles that astonished them most. It was the way they spoke. These ignorant and unlearned men spoke with boldness and authority on Jesus and the resurrection. and the people took notice of that. Wouldn't it be great if people could tell by our speech and our conviction that we had a personal relationship with Jesus.

I read an account once of a small boy in a large city who was selling apples from an old shopping cart. It was on a Sunday and he was passing a large church just as the crowd came out. His basket was overturned and the apples spilled out and the people just walked by and ignored him. Finally a lady came out and helped him pick up the apples and was very kind to him.
He asked her what the big building was and she answered, "That is God's house."
Not knowing anything about religious matters but having heard of the love of God he asked her, "Are you God's wife?"
Wouldn't it be great for all of us if we could express the kind of attitude and behavior that people would at least think that we must be some relation to God?

Friday, November 7, 2008


GENESIS 25:30-34
Ge 25:30-34 And Esau said to Jacob, Feed me, I pray thee, with that same red pottage; for I am faint: therefore was his name called Edom. (31) And Jacob said, Sell me this day thy birthright. (32) And Esau said, Behold, I am at the point to die: and what profit shall this birthright do to me? (33) And Jacob said, Swear to me this day; and he sware unto him: and he sold his birthright unto Jacob. (34) Then Jacob gave Esau bread and pottage of lentiles; and he did eat and drink, and rose up, and went his way: thus Esau despised his birthright.

We may not realize the importance of the birthright in those days. The birthright was the rights and privileges of the first-born, which were very important, the chief being that they were the family priests it also entitled them to a double portion of their father's inheritance. Esau sold his for a pot of soup and some bread to satisfy his current appetite.
We may think that was not a very intelligent thing for him to do but before we become too critical we need to examine our own lives and think of the times we have sold out too cheap. We sell our freedom for security. We sell our testimony for popularity. We sell our self respect for instant gratification.
Thankfully those who are saved have an inheritance that can not be lost, stolen, or even sold. We are sealed by His Spirit. We can sell out to the world and lose our current blessings though. Before we do something we should count the cost. Nothing is greater than the blessings that God has for us.

Thursday, November 6, 2008


Mark 13:22 For false Christs and false prophets shall rise, and shall show signs and wonders, to seduce, if it were possible, EVEN THE ELECT.
Mark 13:33 Take ye heed, watch and pray: for ye know not when the time is.

The world is truly changing. We are witnessing things that would have been impossible to believe 50 years ago. You can not take the verses here by themselves and understand the prophecy of end times. It takes years of study and prayer and still no one can answer all the questions about when the end will come.
The book of Revelation speaks of a time when images will come to life and when men will speak and every one in the world can see them at once. Can you imagine the puzzle this must have been to circuit riding preachers a century ago? It does not puzzle or amaze us. An individual with a camera and computer can use the Internet and broadcast all over the world if people would log on to watch.
We are not to know the day and the hour that Jesus will return but when He does we will know it. No one will have to tell us.
What we must do is to take heed, be aware and notice the things going on, that is in society, in politics, in the financial world, and especially in compromising one's beliefs. These are signs pointing toward His coming. We must watch for Him and pray. We are in His hands and no matter what may happen in this World He is bigger than all of it.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008


(Proverbs 17:22) A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones.
I have always loved the words to "His Eye Is On The Sparrow". I smile when I hear (or sing) these words, "I sing because I'm Happy, I sing because I'm free, His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me."
Have you ever noticed how much good it does you when you sing a happy song or when you hear one. I do my best singing in the car when no one else is with me. You really don't have to be able to sing to enjoy it.
Do you notice how much better you feel after you hear or see something that is funny. Laughter is good medicine. Maybe each day we should take some short breaks just to be merry. Sing a song, tell something funny, smile and laugh a little.
It will make you feel better and it will usually make those around you feel better. It will keep you from having a broken spirit and the last thing you want is dry bones.
Knowing that God is watching and that He cares what happens to each and every one of us is enough to make our hearts merry.

Monday, November 3, 2008


Ps 14:1 To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David. The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. They are corrupt, they have done abominable works, there is none that doeth good.

One doesn't have to look far to see the influence of the foolish on the world today. People are doing evil and calling it good. People are looking to man and government to solve their problems. People are doing all sorts of terrible things and then they will attack Christians because we don't agree with them.
Many may not say out loud that there is no God but they live as if they will never have to give an account for their actions. God has been expelled from the classrooms and our schools (meaning our children) are suffering because of it.
Programs on television very seldom mention God unless it is to take His name in vain. If a person has strong faith in God and His Word they are labled as extreme fundamentalist (as if that were an insult). The news media never cover the good things that are done in the name of Jesus. It is only when someone claiming to be a Christian does something horrible that it gets any coverage.
I just want to say, There is a God. He is in control. He is our creator and someday everyone of us will give an account of our lives to Him.
The fool may say in his heart that there is no God but he is in for a terrible shock someday.

Friday, October 31, 2008


By Jeremy Burkes

2 Timothy 1:12 For the which cause I also suffer these things: nevertheless I am not ashamed: for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day.

We all have a past. Most of us have things from the past that we keep hidden. Some people suffer because they can not let go of the past and are troubled by the secrets they have. God wants us to confess our sins to Him (we don't have to tell the world about them) and let Him clean up our past. It might be hard but we can let go.
In the animated movie "The Lion King" a young lion is trying to run away from his past but he finally came face to face with his past. That is the way it is with us if we don't let God take care of it. Instead of giving it to God we try to run from it. In the movie the lion encounters a monkey who brings up the past. The monkey slaps the lion in the head. When the lion asks him why he did it the monkey said, "It doesn't matter, it's in the past." The lion responded, "It doesn't matter but it still hurts."
Sometimes the past hurts but it is in the past. Sometimes it is hard to let go and let God heal the hurt. It might seem impossible but it is not impossible with God.
Mark 10:27 And Jesus looking upon them saith, With men it is impossible, but not with God: for with God all things are possible.
By the grace of God we can let go of the past.

Thursday, October 30, 2008


Ps 12:1 To the chief Musician upon Sheminith, A Psalm of David. Help, LORD; for the godly man ceaseth; for the faithful fail from among the children of men.

This Psalm of David starts off with the simplest of prayers. It is something that each of us can use every day and most of us need to. David simply says, "Help Lord."
It is short. So many times when we pray we seem think that we must say more to have a better prayer. God doesn't need us to explain what is going on around us. He is aware of everything that is happening everywhere yet we sometimes try to give him a detailed account of our problems as if it might be a surprise to Him. He knows the details ahead of time but he wants us to acknowledge Him and come to Him.
It is to the point. Help. That is usually what we go to the Lord for. Help, I am discouraged. Help, I am surrounded by people who constantly make my life difficult. Help, I am weak and temptation is all around me. Help, I am sick and can't seem to get to feeling better. Help, I am confused and I need direction. Help certainly covers a multitude of situations. Help Lord.
It is directed properly. Help Lord. He is the only one so often than can help. No matter how hectic or unsettled our lives may become He is the only one who can really help us.
As you go through the day and through the coming days just remember it is a short but powerful prayer. Help Lord, I certainly know I need it.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008


2 Cor 5:14-15 For the love of Christ constraineth us; because we thus judge, that if one died for all, then were all dead: (15) And that he died for all, that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them, and rose again.

There are many books and many aritcles on the subject of movivation. Motivation is causing something to move or putting something in motion. Large corporations spend hundreds of thousands of dollars to motivate there workers to be more productive. We are motivated by many things. Hunger motivates us to work to buy food. Desire for success motivates us to grow and to learn new skills. Wanting companionship motivates us to treat others with kindness and courtesy and causes us to practice the "Golden Rule." Fear is a great motivator. If something suddenly frightens you, it is surprising, even to you, how quickly you can move. I have seen snakes movtivate people to do some extrordinary running that they didn't think they were capable of. We should be motivated in our work for the Lord, and while fear is a great motivator, love is even a greater one. Love motivates us to make sacrifices, to do things for others at our own expense and effort. It is not just the love we have that motivates us but the love others have for us. Children try to please their parents because they know the parents love them. I have used the example many times that my wife does many wonderful things for me. She keeps the house clean, cooks my meals, washes my clothes and the list could go on forever. She does not do these things because she is afraid of me. If she were to stop doing them I would not punish her or banish her. She does things for me because she is compelled by my love for her and her love for me. When we are motivated out of love to do things for others it does not bring resentment but brings us happiness. The same is true for our relationship with Jesus. we should be compelled to serve Him because we are certain that He loves us and we know that we love Him. When we do the work He has for us and are motivated by love, it brings us great joy

Tuesday, October 28, 2008


Josh 1:7 Only be thou strong and very courageous, that thou mayest observe to do according to all the law, which Moses my servant commanded thee: turn not from it to the right hand or to the left, that thou mayest prosper whithersoever thou goest.
If Christians today are lacking in any one thing I think that it is courage. We find ourselves surrounded by a lost and very confused world and we sit timidly among them and say nothing. We are afraid to offend even the offensive. We are certainly in the later days that the Bible speaks of and it is imperative that we face these days with courage. Now is a time for boldness. We must be bold in our testimony. It is great to witness to others by our lifestyle and let others see that we are different but lifestyle testimony is not enough. We must be bold and tell them Who makes the difference in our lives. For too long we have had a passive ministry. We live and let live or more likely we live and let die. Certainly everyone has the opportunity to learn about Jesus and to study a Bible and learn about His salvation. That is passive. We are taught throughout the Bible that we must be more aggressive. When I say aggressive I don't mean pushy or annoying but at least we need to be verbal. I once heard a story about a very shy Christian man who worked for a very worldly and crude businessman. This businessman would curse and yell at his employees on a daily basis. Once when this man was cursing and chewing out his staff the shy little man found the courage to say, "Mr. Smith, If you just knew Jesus you would be a lot happier and the rest of us would too." The boss was surprised and actually became speechless because he knew how shy this man was. He thought long and hard that night about what was said and he went to the midweek service where the shy man attended church. They were having Bible study and prayer meeting and that night he asked Jesus to save him. His life did turn around and things did get better for him and all those around him because the shy little man had the courage to be a little more aggressive in his ministry. Courage also should make us be bold in our convictions. We need to stand up for the Bible and stand on God's Word. We need to apply it and we need to share it. It seems today that when one stands up for what is right and stands against sin he is called hateful. We all should hate sin, and speak against it. We do this because we hate sin and because we love the sinner enough to know that sin is destructive to them. We certainly do not hate the sinner because we have all sinned but we must be courageous in speaking out against the destructiveness of sin.
Let's strive to be more courageous, by being bold in our testimony, aggressive in our ministry and strong in our convictions.

Monday, October 27, 2008


1 John 5:14 And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us:
Sometimes we don't seem to have the confidence in God that we should. We feel that maybe we are missing out on something in life or that others are being blessed more than we are. I have had many people ask me if it was wrong to question why some people seemed to have a lot but didn't live for the Lord while some people were dedicated and faithful and still had to struggle.
I always tell them that it is not wrong to question things but I always assure them also that God does not make mistakes. We find that many people who seem to have much really are not satisfied with what they have. Worse than that many of them already have their rewards and we know our greatest rewards are yet to come.
James 4:3 Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.
Sometimes we do not get what we ask for because we ask for the wrong reasons. Sometimes God blesses us by not giving us everything we ask for.
We should examine ourselves carefully. Are we using the things that God has blessed us with to Glorify Him? We can be confident that whatever we ask, according to His will, He will hear us. We are facing uncertain times. Politics, the economy, natural disasters, wars, and more are enough to make us pause and think about the future.
Remember we may not know what the future holds for us, but we do know who holds the future. You can be confident that God loves you, God cares for you and His grace is sufficient for you.

Friday, October 24, 2008


1 Timothy 6:6 But godliness with contentment is great gain.

Philippians 4:11 Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.

We certainly can not always determine our circumstances. We have good times and we sometimes go through bad times. The old saying is true that "Bad things sometimes happen to good people."
It seems that since we don't have absolute control over our circumstances that we might as well give in to them sometimes. The apostle Paul found himself in some pretty harsh situations. He was stoned, he was imprisoned, he was nearly beaten to death. These things seemed to happen quite often to Paul yet he said that no matter what state or situation he found himself in he had learned to be content.
Joseph was sold into slavery and then cast into prison. In each situation he just did the best he could and tried to always be faithful and do the right thing.
Sometimes it is not our circumstances but our attitude toward them that cause us to not to be content. I can't help my physical problems. I can't help my financial situation much. I certainly can't do anything about the behavior of others around me and I quit trying to solve the problems of the world a long time ago. There is only one thing that I have control over and that is me and how I react to things.
I have learned that trying to serve God and being content with my circumstances is certainly great gain. Maybe I am where God can use me the most.
Leave us a comment

Thursday, October 23, 2008


By Jeremy Burkes
Matthew 6:24 No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.
Is your goal in life to please God or please man? Many times man will let you down, even our friends. God will never let us down. Sometimes even our closest friends and family will turn against us but God never will. People will talk about you, God wants to talk to you. The decision is yours whether you try to please God or those around you.

Jesus tells us in the book of Matthew that we can not serve two masters. I saw a church sign that said, "God wants full custody, Not just weekend visits." While attending church is a good habit it should be much more. We should come prepared to worship God. God truly wants you to receive the blessings He has to offer you.

Serving God and making Him your true Master is a matter of choice. We need to make the same committment to serve Him as Josuah did.

Joshua 24:15 ...but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.

Monday, October 20, 2008


By Jeremy Burkes
Mattew 28:18-20 And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. (19) Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: (20) Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.
After we are saved, what do we do next? We are often guilty of missed opportunities. How many people have you told about Jesus?

Jesus paid for our salvation. He was crucified, buried, then rose again. He still lives and we need to share that with the world. Witnessing can be hard, but it is something we have been commanded to do. Jesus told His disciples in Matthew to go, I believe he intended that for His modern day followers too.
Most of us know someone who needs to know God. Most of us know people who have questions about spiritual things. They need answers, we have the answers in the Bible. We have the knowledge of Jesus and His plan of salvation. We need to go and tell others.
Fanny Crosby wrote the words "Rescue the perishing, Care for the dying, Jesus is merciful, Jesus will save."
That is a great message for us to share with a world that is truly perishing.
(We will not have a new devotional until Thursday)

Friday, October 17, 2008


By Jeremy Burkes
Matthew 6:19 Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal:

Most of us have a shelf in our houses where we keep what some would call junk. These nic-nacs or whatever we call them are sometimes treasures to us. We try to keep the kids away from them, we try to keep them from being broken. Not all our treasures are put on a shelf. We might treasure our homes or a vehicle.
Sometimes we try to treasure everything. We will hold onto stuff thinking we might use it later, like a nut or a screw or an old table leg. We might even hold onto a piece of wire that came out of something we can't even remember. Someday all these things will be nothing but dust. We need to stop collecting dust and focus more on God's treasure.
Matthew 6:20 But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal:
Stuff doesn't make us happy. Only God can make us truly happy and He wants us to be happy by having a close relationship with Him through Jesus. God's Son, Jesus is the greatest treasure in the world. Jesus came to the world to give abundant life to all who want it.
John 10:10 ...I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.
God wants us to have a happy abundant life. We may need to leave some of the excess junk out of our lives and store our treasures in heaven and not on earth. Let us strive for the rewards that God has for us. Let us clean the dust out of our lives. After all, "...For where your treasure is, there your heart is also.

Thursday, October 16, 2008


Tommie L. Joiner
While I was pastor of First Baptist Church of Newark, Arkansas there were many who were faithful in attendance but none more faithful than Buckwheat. He attended every service regardless of the weather or the seasons, and he wasn't even allowed inside. During Sunday School he would sit under the awning by the Educational Building and wait for classes to dismiss. He would then proceed to the front door and greet members and visitors alike. During the preaching he would leave the front door and move to the side entrance where he could hear better and then return to the front door to see everyone off.
Buckwheat wasn't even a member of the church. Buckwheat was a German Shepherd.
His faithfulness was not just on Sundays and Wednesdays either. Every day as I would walk from the house to the church to study he would walk beside me with his head nuzzled in my hand and would wait by the door until I came out and returned home.
I made the comment many times that I wished the rest of the members were as faithful as Buckwheat. Some commented, "Yes, he is faithful but it is for a different reason."
After hearing this comment several times I realized that they were wrong. His reason for being there was the same reason we should be there. Buckwheat was faithful because he loved his master.
If we love our Master as he did we too will want to walk close to Him. We will be faithful to Him and wait patiently for Him knowing that he is coming back.
Buckwheat, like us sometimes went astray and then he would return. I was always glad to see him come home where he belonged.
The last time he went away he came back wounded. He had been shot by a small caliber bullet and I did not know what the problem was until it was too late.
He came home, laid his head in my lap and died with my arms around him.
I hope I never stray from my master and get destroyed by the world, but this much I know, dogs or people do not live forever.
Like Buckwheat, I hope to be faithful to my Master in this life and when it comes time for the end, I will take my last breath in the loving arms of my Master.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008


1 Peter 5:6 Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time:

A person who truly loves children can find great joy and he can learn a lot from them if he stops and thinks about it. Children go through stages and each stage is special in it's own way. One of my favorite stages is the toddler stage. The child is still almost as dependant upon the adult as the infant but they are more aware. They relate to people, acknowledge them, and show affection to them in different measure.

It thrills my heart when a toddler recognizes someone, turns to them with a big smile and runs to them with his hands in the air knowing that they will pick him up and give him a big hug. It especially thrills me when that someone is me. It is not so much that he loves me but that he knows that I love him and he trusts me to show that love by lifting him and giving him a big hug, knowing that I would never do anything purposely to hurt him.

When I think of humbling myself under the hand of God I think that it is then that I must act like a toddler. I must meet Him with a smile, expect Him to pick me up and love me. I must know that He would never do anything to harm me and that I am safe in His arms.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008


Philippians 3:13-14 Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, (14) I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.

Sometimes it is hard to strike a balance between being thankful and being satisfied. We should definitely be thankful, God has blessed each of us tremendously and given us so much. If we are not careful we begin to take the blessings for granted and we become satisfied. We get satisfied with what we are, what we have and who we are. As if we had already "apprehended" or reached the peak of our life.
One great evidence that God still has a purpose for us is that He has not called us home yet. If we are still here, we still have room for growth and we still have things to accomplish.
I confess that at times in my life I have looked behind and felt that I had done about all I was put here to do. Maybe I don't have as many opportunities before me as I used to have but I still have a responsibility to strive to do more.
Each of us should strive to reach a higher level of spirituality and service and be constantly setting higher goals in our Christian life. One thing is certain, when God gets through with us, He will be the one to let us know.

Monday, October 13, 2008


By Jeremy Burkes

John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

When someone offers us something free we are often afraid there is a catch. We know that there is very little in this world that is free. There is a gift that is free and has no catch and it is not of this world.
God loves us enough that He sent His own Son, Jesus, to this world to save us from our sins. Everyone has sinned. No one is excluded.

Romans 3:23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;

Man can not pay for his own sins. "For the wages of sin is death." But there is more to that. "The gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord." Jesus came to pay our sin debt. In this way God opened the door of heaven for all who believe. He loved us enough to give us His Son for a much needed gift.
We all need salvation. There are many lost people who are seeking something better. That something is in Jesus Christ.

Rom. 10:13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

Friday, October 10, 2008


Psalm 107:2 Let the redeemed of the LORD say so, whom he hath redeemed from the hand of the enemy;
I have noticed that people are quick to let you know where they stand on many issues. You can see political signs proclaiming support for political candidates. People have flags and banners hanging from their cars in support of their teams as they travel to ballgames. People don't seem to be the least bit shy when it comes to supporting some of their favorite causes. They wear a ribbon in support of some cause or a T-shirt in support of another one.
We as Christians have the greatest cause in the world to support yet we are too often silent. It really shouldn't be that hard. Jesus purchased us to Himself with His own blood and suffering.
1st Corinthians 6:20 For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's.
The best way to Glorify God is to identify ourselves with Him, try to conform to His ways and try to tell the world about Him. It think it is time to for "...the redeemed of the Lord to say so,..."

Thursday, October 9, 2008


T. Joiner
I sit alone on a clear afternoon, in a deer stand up in a tree,
And as I gaze at God's creation, I know He's watching me.

There's not much to do in a deer stand except to sit and wait,
But I can make good use of the time, when I pray and meditate.

While I sit and wait for a trophy, and hope I have some luck,
I have come to realize It's not just about me bagging a buck.

I notice the turning of the leaves and the beautiful colors of fall,
And I sit in awesome silence, knowing God created it all.

As a breeze blows in my face, and I sit up in that tree,
It is a special day, and God is watching me.


James 4:4 Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.

When James here is referring to adulterers and adulteresses he is talking about spiritual adultery. If we are not careful we can all be guilty of this. It is when we let the things of the world distract us and draw us away from God.
The world definitely has much to attract us. There are activities, recreation, desires to succeed by worldly standards and so many more things.
As a pastor I have always been saddened to see someone buy a camper or a speedboat. It seemed that it would eventually cause them to start missing church. Their excuse was, "I have spent so much on this that if I don't use it nearly every weekend I can't get my money's worth out of it." They would then add "You know we are faithful to church most of the time."
I can imagine a man proposing to a woman and her asking, "Will you be faithful to me always?" I can imagine him answering, "I will be faithful to you most of them time. I might want to take summers and a few weekends off from being faithful but I promise I will be faithful most of the time."
What is your guess as to what she would answer to his proposal. It makes me think ask myself this question, "Am I faithful to God every day, all year long?"
I guess we could all do a little work in separating ourselves from the world and remaining faithful to God.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008


T. Joiner
I must watch how I act in public, and be careful what people see,
Because I can never know, when someone's watching me.
I must be careful how I speak and mind the things I say,
Others might be influenced, even a child at play.
We all set an example, either good or bad,
And if I should lead even one astray, that would be too sad.
Our lives should be a compass to help lead the lost,
By pointing them to Jesus by way of the Old Rugged Cross.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008


BY Jeremy Burkes
Matthew 11:28-30 Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. (29) Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.(30) For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.

My family and I recently took a trip to New York. If you have ever been on a long trip you know that when you see a rest stop it is a welcome sight.
Matthew lets you know that on our journey through life we need rest stops too. God's rest stop is always open to all and is available whenever we need to pull over and rest. When we have a bad or hectic day, or sometimes we just need to stop awhile, God wants us to come to Him for rest. The simple truth is that all we have to do is come to Him.
Psalm 37:7 Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for him:
We need rest to recharge our batteries. Rest for our bodies may be just sitting down or getting a good night sleep, or taking a nice nap. When we need spiritual rest we must go to God.
Maybe God is more like a filling station than a rest stop. We not only get a chance to rest but if we pray, and study His word and fellowship with Him, we come away full and ready to get on our way.

Monday, October 6, 2008


Ga 6:7 BE NOT DECEIVED; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.
Sometimes we have things in our life that will ultimately bring harm to us. We all know the effects blatant willful sin and how it will destroy us but sometimes we overlook things in our life that will also bring us harm.
There are things like pride, greed, envy, and others that certainly do not bring Glory to God but eat away at us, usually a little at a time.
Someone once told me that it was easy enough to fight off a shark but when you had thousands of tiny fish biting you it was hard to get away from them. Many of us are like that in our spiritual lives. We don't have great shark-like sins but we do have a multitude of little ones we can't seem to shake off.
The only way to deal with this is by self examination. We must ask ourselves, is there something in my life that I need to separate myself from. Are there sins that seem small to me but ultimately damage my relationship to God and others. If so these will eventually eat away at your spiritual life.
What kind of seed are you sowing? Believe me, If you sow a particular type of seed, that is what you are going to harvest.

Friday, October 3, 2008


Psalm 4:1 To the chief Musician on Neginoth, A Psalm of David. Hear me when I call, O God of my righteousness: thou hast enlarged me when I was in distress; have mercy upon me, and hear my prayer.
We live in a wonderful age as far as technology goes. With cell phone technology you don't have to be out of touch with anyone. I think some people probably never are because you can see them everywhere with their little earphone just talking away.
You see people all along the streets and highways and they have their cell phones up to their ears and they are just chatting away.I've heard that some people even ride along text messaging (please don't do that, I might be on the same road with you.)
It is amazing how much people want to communicate-by phone. I sometimes wonder what they could possibly have to talk about that is so important that they have to keep talking in checkout lines, banks, and even public rest rooms.
Many phones have unlimited calling, meaning for a certain fee you can talk as often and as long as you want. This is not really a new concept. God has always had unlimited calling. The problem is that we don't call out to Him often enough. I think we miss a lot of blessings because we don't call out to God the way we should.

Jer 33:3 Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and show thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.

Use God's unlimited calling plan. He might want to show you some Great and Mighty Things.

Thursday, October 2, 2008


Psalms 2:1 Why do the heathen rage, and the people imagine a vain thing?

They rage because of their vain imaginations. It is surprising how some people can not grasp reality. We are always hearing about how we need more money for education. What we need are more people like Abraham Lincoln who wanted to learn so badly that he walked miles each way to school. All the money in the world will not cause a person to learn if he isn't interested in learning.
Another vain imagination is that education will cure all our ills. The only thing that can cure our ills is a change of the hearts of the wicked. The only thing more dangerous than an ignorant wicked man is a wicked educated man. Wickedness is still wickedness.
People vainly imagine that the government can cure all their ills and handle their problems. In our current state of economics many are learning the truth. It is vanity to think that man can do a thing without God's help.
Education my fail us, government will definitely let us down, but rest assured. Jesus has promised to those who love Him, "...I will never leave the nor forsake thee."
The heathen rage because they have nothing to cling to. They have nothing to assure them. Isn't it great to have peace, knowing that God is in control and that He loves us and cares for us?

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Things To Make Me Smile

T. Joiner
The world is full of problems, for folks to worry about,
And if you dwell on the bad stuff, the future is filled with doubt,

But you need to forget the headlines,and forget bad news for awhile,
And concentrated on your blessings,and the things that make you smile.

Like family get togethers,with lots of fun and food,
Or a Sunday morning service,when the preaching was really good,

The smile on the face of a boyeating an ice cream cone,
The satisfied look on the face of a dog,as he greedily gnaws a bone,

The happy look of a couple in love,as they walk hand in hand,
Whether a young boy and girl,or an old woman and old man,

Think of a winter wonderland,as kids frolic in the snow,
Or picture the early springtime,as the flowers begin to grow,

Imagine a beautiful sunrise or sunset,and how it makes you feel,
And knowing God always loves you,and that He always will,

So, don't think about the bad news,and act like a frightened child,
Think of God and his blessings,and the things that make you smile.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008


James 4:4 Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.
When James here is referring to adulterers and adulteresses he is talking about spiritual adultery. If we are not careful we can all be guilty of this. It is when we let the things of the world distract us and draw us away from God.
The world definitely has much to attract us. There are activities, recreation, desires to succeed by worldly standards and so many more things.
As a pastor I have always been saddened to see someone buy a camper or a speedboat. It seemed that it would eventually cause them to start missing church. Their excuse was, "I have spent so much on this that if I don't use it nearly every weekend I can't get my money's worth out of it." They would then add "You know we are faithful to church most of the time."
I can imagine a man proposing to a woman and her asking, "Will you be faithful to me always?" I can imagine him answering, "I will be faithful to you most of them time. I might want to take summers and a few weekends off from being faithful but I promise I will be faithful most of the time."
What is your guess as to what she would answer to his proposal. It makes me think ask myself this question, "Am I faithful to God every day, all year long?"
I guess we could all do a little work in separating ourselves from the world and remaining faithful to God.
Leave us a comment or send us an email.

Monday, September 29, 2008


Isaiah 55:11 So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.
Today's devotional is a little different than usual. I wanted to just mention the work of the Gideons. The Gideons are a group of professional men that have a ministry of placing the Bible, God's Word, in places where it is needed. If anything is needed today in most places it is definitely the Word of God.
Yesterday in our services we had a speaker come and share the work of the Gideons with our Church. Over the years I have heard many Gideons speak about their work and I have always had a burden to support their work. The speaker yesterday was one of the best I have heard over the years.
In my ministry several times when I did not have my Bible handy at a hospital I was able to use a Gideon bible to share the plan of salvation with someone and led some of them to the Lord.
They place the Bible in schools, hospitals, prisons, jails, motels and in many countries (in 84 different languages). I want to use the devotional today to urge each one reading this to pray for the Gideon ministry. If you have a chance to contribute to this ministry I encourage you to do so. All of the money contributed to this ministry goes to the printing and distribution of Bibles. The Gideons themselves pay their own expenses and cover the administrative costs through support from their on members.
Somewhere in the world there is someone who needs a Bible and wants to get to know God. Pray that the Lord will use your support and the Gideons to get one to them.

Friday, September 26, 2008


Hebrews 11:24-25 By faith Moses, when he was come to years, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh's daughter; (25) Choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season;

Moses could have had it all by worldly standards but chose to give it up. God had a bigger and better plan for Moses and even though Moses could not have possibly known how big and how much better that plan was, he turned is back on the pleasures of sin for a season.
When we see someone whose life is ravaged by sin, when they have reached the depths of despair and destruction we sometimes ask, "How could anyone get in that condition?"
The simple answer is one step at a time. Sin is progressive. That is the way it gets it's hold on people, one little step at time. I once heard a sermon by Dr. Adrian Rodgers and something really stuck in my mind from that sermon. He said, "Sin will take you farther than you are willing to stray. Sin will keep you longer than you are willing to stay, and sin will cost you more than you are willing to pay." I am not sure if this was an original thought with him but it certainly has a profound truth.
Most of us are familiar with the story of the Prodigal Son in Luke Chapter 15. If you do not know it I suggest you read and reread it until it is hidden in your heart. The son left his fathers house with his inheritance and squandered it all on sinful living until he wound up eating what the hogs left over. When he came to himself he realized that even the hired labor at his father's house lived better than he did. He went home and was welcomed with open arms by his loving father.
The thing that has always amazed me is that the son could have turned and went home at any time. He didn't have to wait until he hit rock bottom before he separated himself from the sinful pleasures of the world and went home. People can turn around at any time but often they wait until there is no where else left to go.
Don't let sin gradually drag you to the pig pen. Turn around and go back to the Father's house. He is always waiting with open arms.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Separation Series

This is the first in a short series on separation. I hope you get a blessing from it.

Ps 1:1 Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful.
It never ceases to amaze me that many of the people who want to counsel others,that is, to give advice, are people who are not really doing so well themselves. Did you ever notice that those with ungodly agendas never seem to be satisfied. They gripe, they complain, they put down everything positive and they never really seem to contribute anything to society. It is best to avoid taking advice from these people. If you are not careful you could wind up as miserable as they are.
When I was young my mother used to tell me that I would be known by the company I kept. What she meant was that if I ran with the wild crowd, no matter what I did, I would be branded as one of them. I learned that not only would I be branded as one of them that I would eventually become one of them. People really want to be accepted by others. If you stand in the way of sinners I have found that they will not accept you unless you engage in their sin. On the other hand I have found that a good spiritual loving church will even accept sinners and will encourage them to change their lives for the better. Other Christians should and usually do set a good example for others an encourage them to a better quality of life.
There are those who mock and ridicule everything. Avoid them if possible, they will cloud your outlook and keep you from seeing the good in yourself and others. Of course we realize that the only good in any of us comes from a good relationship with Jesus. How can the scornful recognize what they have never experienced, being loved and accepted by a loving Savior that loves us in spite of everything.
While the world is telling us that we should be accepting and tolerant of all sorts of ungodly things, the Bible teaches us that we should separate ourselves from some things. Who are we going to listen to, the world, or the one who created it?