How do you know God's will?

Worthy Christian Devotions » Godliness

Romans 12:1-2 Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.

Many people ask us "How do I know what is God's will for my life?" Well, here's your answer above — right here in Romans! When I was reading the passage, it was as if the words just jumped off the page.

Do these things… 1. Present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God… and 2. Be not conformed to this world but transformed by the renewing of your mind… that you may prove what is that good acceptable and perfect will of God — and other versions say "then" you may prove.

There you have it. Plain and clear — we have some things to work on. Let's focus on doing these important things so that we may know what His good acceptable and PERFECT will for our lives.

Worthy Christian Devotions » Godliness

Understand the Times!

Worthy Christian Devotions » Godliness

by George Whitten, Editor of Worthy Devotions.

1 Chronicles 12:32 And of the children of Issachar, which were men that had understanding of the times, to know what Israel ought to do; the heads of them were two hundred; and all their brethren were at their commandment.

Luke 21:36 Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.

Among the mighty men of David were those of the tribe of Issachar whose special gift was their understanding of the times, a gift of prophetic insight; and this was such a precious gift because included in their discernment was the ability to know how to apply it. In our time prophecy is everywhere. Yeshua (Jesus) warned us that there would be false prophets in the last days, especially approaching His second coming, and He said the prophecy would be so subtle and the false signs so powerful that even the elect might be deceived if that were possible; [Mt. 24:24] While it's clear to many of us that we're living in prophetic days, there are also millions who have no clue of the current times and seasons.

So we're faced with a challenge and a profound, multi-faceted responsibility: to acknowledge the significance of our times, to awaken others to this reality, to rightly discern true from false prophecy, and to know what to do about the things we rightly discern. Wow! Not an easy task. How do we even begin?

I believe that we have a prophetic "anchor"…a fundamental sign, missing throughout all of Church history, until our day. This sign is the rebirth of Israel as a nation. Many of the OT prophets foresaw the ingathering of the Jewish people to their ancient homeland in the latter days. [Jeremiah 30; Isaiah 43:5-6; Amos 9:14-15; and many others]. Isaiah prophesied the nation's rebirth in a single rhetorical question, "Can a nation be born in a day?" [ Isaiah 66:8]. One hundred years ago Israel, (then called "Palestine" by the Romans, as an insult to the Jews), was a barren, sparsely inhabited province in the Ottoman empire, and Jerusalem was hardly ever mentioned in conversation unless someone was reading scripture. Today, Israel is a thriving resurrected nation, reclaimed from desolation, established in one single day, (May 14, 1948), and Jerusalem is in virtually every daily newspaper, the subject of intense controversy throughout the civilized world. This one sign assures me, personally, that we are really and truly living at the end of the age.

I believe we must acknowledge this, share it, WATCH very carefully, and PRAY as the developments in the Middle East conform themselves to the Word of God. The prophetic clock is ticking toward the final hours of this age when the Lord Yeshua will return in power and great glory to judge the entire world of men.

The sons of Issachar understood their times, and knew what to do. Watching and praying, we can too. Preparing ourselves with holy living for the Lord's return, we must also warn those who live in ignorance of these amazing days by showing them the prophetic sign of Israel's resurrection, and warning them to repent, believe the gospel, and be accounted worthy to escape all these things and to stand before the Son of Man!

Worthy Christian Devotions » Godliness

Crush, Mutilate, Destroy!

Worthy Christian Devotions » Godliness

by George Whitten, Editor of Worthy Devotions

2 Corinthians 6:16 And what agreement has the temple of God with idols? for you are the temple of the living God; as God has said, "I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people."

According to ancient Jewish legend, one day Abraham was shown his father, Terah's room of many idols. Young Abraham, thinking that perhaps he could discover intimacy with them, made some desirable delicacies and placed them before the idols. When nothing happened, he realized that these idols were nothing more than clay — they could do nothing for him or anyone else for that matter. So he proceeded to destroy all the idols, except for one.

When Terah received word of this, he went to Abraham and said, "Son, what did you do to my idols?!" "I brought them delicacies," Abraham replied, "and then the biggest idol became envious of the others, and destroyed them all." Terah, furious with Abraham, said, "You're lying to me! How can idols made by my own hands do such things?" "You're right father." Replied Abraham, "Now tell me, then, why do we worship idols that can not eat, drink or even move?"

This kind of idol worship may sound far removed from us, but we too, have our idols. They may not be made of clay but they are very real! The love of money, possessions, success, leisure, food, sensuality, security and outward beauty — the love of tradition and even our friends and family — the pursuit of our goals and dreams are among some just off the top of my head. Most of these are not bad things in and of themselves, don't get me wrong. But if we are not careful, they can all easily become idols in our lives!

What is the object of our affections today? What takes up the majority of our time, effort, and resources? These are our idols. Anything that we allow to run our life becomes our god.

There is only One God we ought to be worshiping — and He will not have any other god's before Him! Let's crush our idols today. We need to get right with the Lord so that we may be used mightily for His Kingdom!

Worthy Christian Devotions » Godliness

Patience — Oh what a lesson!

Worthy Christian Devotions » Godliness

by George Whitten, Editor of Worthy Devotions.

2 Peter 1:5-7 And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity.

Patience is one of those attributes that you cannot learn by reading about it. It's a quality that can only be acquired by persistent, enduring, practice– and for me it's a drill that I go over, and over, and over again!

The original Webster's dictionary offers this definition of patience: "the suffering of afflictions, pain, toil, calamity, provocation or other evil, with a calm, unruffled temper; endurance without murmuring or fretfulness, from a kind of heroic pride, or from a Christian submission to the divine will."

Reading this definition two things really struck me – first, "endurance without murmuring". I, for instance, get so frustrated sitting in a traffic jam… counting the wasted minutes when I could have been doing something useful! Yet, what an opportunity for me to choose to quench the inner fumes – and use the delay to work on my patience!

The second thing that really hit me was, "a Christian submission to the divine will." How many times are we placed in a difficult position, or forced to deal with an "impossible" situation? Or perhaps, an "impossible" person? These circumstances are always opportunities to grow in patience – or to learn to submit to God's providential will, and often, to minister in some special or unique way.

Is your patience being tested today? Great! Remember, love is (first of all) patient. [1 Cor. 13:4] The Lord is training you toward godliness –- and godliness is moving toward perfect love. With so much work to be done, He is really wanting to work this quality into your character now -– to perfect your love, and with it to transform the world around you for His glory!

Worthy Christian Devotions » Godliness

Do you remember when phones were for phone calls?

Worthy Christian Devotions » Godliness

by George Whitten, Editor of Worthy Devotions

When I was growing up in the 1980's we had a rotary dial phone. You put your finger in a numbered spot on a circular dialer which clicked as it returned to its place and registered the 7 or 10 numbers you selected. It took a full 10 to 20 seconds to complete a call and was really annoying if the number had a lot of 8s or 9s! Then came touch-tone phones. You pushed a button, it beeped, and you could make a call in two and a half to three seconds. Back in those days, a phone was simply an instrument to talk with someone voice to voice. Nowadays, phones are "smarter"; they are "smart" phones; and they do everything but make coffee for you in the morning, although soon I think you can program them to start your coffee maker before you wake up. You can send or receive emails, text, Facebook, "Skype", play games, study French, listen to music, record love letters, pay your bills, watch movies…your phone can be the interface for your life, and it is, for many people!

These days when you get a phone — a "smart phone", the first thing you do is to find the best “apps” for it. Thousands and thousands of apps are available, with more being created every 5 minutes. Your apps define the interface of your life. But I had this thought…

…there's God apps… throughout the Scriptures, and they're FREE — thousands of them, every one "GUARANTEED" to be a top-level "interface" for your life! Check out the love app! [Matthew 22:37-39] Or the Spiritual Fruit App! [Galatians 5:22] Or the Unity App! [Ephesians 4:2-6] The Scriptures are just filled with apps to apply to the interface of your life!

Spend some time in God's free "App Store" today, it's just an opened Bible away! Apply God's apps to your life — you'll be dialing into His will, purposes, power, and His infinitely interesting universe!

Worthy Christian Devotions » Godliness