Sunday, September 26, 2010

Day 3: Faith, Not Fear: THINGS HOPED FOR

Welcome to day 3 of our Bible based, Christ focused devotional.

Purpose: With so many people suffering during these tough economic times, I wanted to create a daily devotional that would promote faith in God as a solution to overcoming anger and fear.

Each devotional will provide a daily passage of Scripture for you to reflect on throughout the day. In addition, an “Action Item” will assign a daily, simple task to address your fears with faith.

Thank you and God bless you for reading this devotional--please share it with others!

Steve Kendall


Day 3: Things Hoped For

Today’s Scripture for Reflection: Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. (King James Version)

Opening Prayer: Please find a quiet place where you can pray alone. Remember, no matter how long, or short your prayer, you’re having a conversation with God.

In your opening prayer, please pray for greater faith, especially faith that God can help you to handle the unseen--your future. -----------------------------------------------------------------------

Hopes and Dreams

Hebrews 11:1 is one of my favorite passages of Scripture. I like the King James Version posted above as it sounds so poetic.

A more contemporary version of Hebrews 11:1 reads this way, Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see. (NLT) New Living Translation

What are your hopes and dreams? Do you have faith that you'll achieve them? If you really think about it, we can do nothing without God. And the primary way to please God is through faith in Him. Remember our Scripture for Reflection from yesterday? Hebrews 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him. (King James Version)

The pastor of the church I attend, Dr. Lucius M. Dalton, is currently preaching a series of sermons entitled, "The Lord Will Provide," which was the inspiration for this 40 day devotional on faith over fear.

Because of a chronic illness, I am unable to attend church as often as I like. In fact, I have not been present for Pastor Dalton's recent sermons. I was able to listen to the audio from home, via the church Web site, and felt quite blessed by them. I can't wait until I'm able to join my church family again!

Click here to listen to Dr. Dalton's series.

If you are without a church home today. Pray that the Lord will lead you to a church where you can grow in Christ. Some folks will say they don't need church and can worship God without it. A church family is essential for your growth. The church is often full of hypocrites, liars, broken people, etc., which is the best place for all of us with problems so that we can help one another and be a blessing to someone else.

If you are unable to attend church, or in the process of looking for one, I recommend you seek preachers you can listen to, or watch on TV, or online. I prefer those whose sermons are Biblically sound.

For my recommendations, visit Bible Study Cafe on Facebook and look for the "Discussions" tab, followed by "Favorite Preachers." Please join the discussion and add your favorites. I look forward to reading what you share.

Final Thought for Today Last night in Bible study (an aside-I was soooo happy to have the energy and health to make it to church last night!), my pastor said he believes God blesses us so that we can be a blessing to someday else. I agree. In today's Action Item, we'll work on being a blessing to someone else and our hopes and dreams.

Today’s Action Item: Please use the paper from yesterday’s Action Item. Are there any remaining worries on your list that you circled? Do you have faith that God can help you with them? Be sure to pray about those items today.

Blessing Others Turn your paper over and look at the names on your Prayer List. Pick someone from the list who could perhaps use a pleasant surprise this week to brighten their day.

Bless this person with a simple act of kindness: If you will see them in person, treat this individual to their favorite snack, or beverage. Sign and attach a note indicating that you are praying for them and ask that they pray for you as well. Close the note with, "Have a blessed day!"

If you won't see this person during the week, mail (snail mail, not email, please--'cause everybody loves to get mail) a note to them with the prayer message from the paragraph above.

Each week during this devotional period, pick someone on your Prayer List and repeat the act of kindness/blessing.

Hold on to this first Action Item paper as you'll use the Prayer List on the back for the remainder of this 40 day devotional. Add names to your list at any time.

Hopes, Dreams and Goals Okay, get a new piece of blank paper. Fold it down the middle. Write the words "Hopes and Dreams" on the top left. On the top right, "Goals."

List and number your hopes and dreams. Don't hold back. Write down all your hopes and dreams, no matter how impossible they may seem to you at present.

Put the paper aside for tomorrow’s Action Item. We'll deal with your goals, which is how you can achieve those hopes and dreams, tomorrow.

You Are Truly Blessed On last thing about blessings--you are truly blessed. No matter how bad things get, if you wake up each morning, it's another day for things to improve with God's help. Remember, we can't do anything without God. If we could, we probably wouldn't have any problems.

I'm Blessed, Thank You! For the remaining days of this devotional, whenever someone asks, "How are you?" Reply: "I'm blessed, thank you. How are you?"

This exchange will prayerfully open the door for God to do something in your life that you haven't even thought of, or hoped for yet. When it happens, it will be evidence of things unseen.

Closing Prayer: After you talk to God about the people on your prayer list, also ask God to reveal the plans He has for you. Another passage of Scripture that I love pertains to God's plans for us: For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. Jeremiah 29:11 (NLT)

Remember to close your prayer by asking for these things in Jesus’ name as we discussed yesterday. Please do this with all of your prayers moving forward. ---------------------------------------------

Free Stuff For You! You are cordially invited to visit my ministry Web site, Bible Study, to download free stuff including a prayer journal.

Join Bible Study Cafe on Facebook and follow my twitches and tweets on Twitter. ------------------------------------------

A True Relationship with God

If you would like a relationship with God, the only way to do it is through His son, Jesus Christ. This is supported in the Bible: Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. --John 14:6 (King James Version)

We begin this relationship by first accepting Jesus. Here's a link to more info:

Until tomorrow, have a blessed day and a blessed week!

Unless otherwise indicated, all Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright 1996, 2004. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved.