Are you shining?

Worthy Christian Devotions » Self-examination

by George Whitten, Editor of Worthy Devotions

Matthew 25:23 His lord said unto him, Well done, good and faithful servant; thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.

It was a stormy night in Birmingham, England, and Hudson Taylor was to speak at a meeting at the Severn Street schoolroom. His hostess assured him that nobody would attend on such a stormy night, but Taylor insisted on going. "I must go even if there is no one but the doorkeeper." Less than a dozen people showed up, but the meeting was marked with unusual spiritual power. Half of those present either became missionaries or gave their children as missionaries; and the rest were faithful supporters of the China Inland Mission for years to come. Hudson Taylor was going to be faithful to speak even if it was to only one person. Today, God may be calling you to speak to that one person.

D.L. Moody once said: “God has called us to shine, just as much as Daniel was sent into Babylon to shine. Let no one say that he cannot shine because he has not so much influence as some others may have. What God wants you to do is to use the influence you have. Daniel probably did not have much influence down in Babylon at first, but God soon gave him more because he was faithful and used what he had."

God is looking for those who are willing to be faithful! He wants to use us in ways we could never or would never have imagined – but in order for that to transpire we need to be faithful in the little things and we need to be available when He calls!

Worthy Christian Devotions » Self-examination

You were foreknown and foreordained for a purpose!

Worthy Christian Devotions » Self-examination

by George Whitten, Editor of Worthy Devotions

Jeremiah 1:5 Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; Before you were born I sanctified you; I ordained you a prophet to the nations.
Romans 8:29 For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son,
Ephesians 1:4 just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love,
Ephesians 2:10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.

These past few days, writing about the will of God, has reminded me of the prophet Jeremiah, and how the Lord knew him – even before he was in his mother's womb, and he was sanctified by God as a prophet to the nations. A similar foreknowledge and ordination of God belongs to us who are under the New Covenant. God's foreknowledge of His people is clearly stated in scripture. We were chosen in Him before the foundation of the world to be holy and blameless, and created in Messiah Yeshua (Christ Jesus) unto good works which He foreordained that we walk in them. It is clear that a life of holiness and good works is an integral part of our destiny in salvation, a fundamental aspect of His original plan for each one of us.

This plan, instilled in us even before the foundation of the world, seems to insure that good works will follow the believers in Yeshua. We could never work our way into heaven, our salvation is wholly an act of God – yet, just as Jeremiah's calling was foreknown and foreordained by God, our ordination unto good works was too. Walking in good works is walking in a manner worthy of our calling, it is powerful evidence for the genuineness of our salvation, and it is walking in the will of God.

From the foundation of the world, according to God's plan, you were created and ordained to live a sanctified life filled with good works. If you walk in His will for you, when your life is over, you may expect to hear these wonderful words: “Well done, thou good and faithful servant!”

Worthy Christian Devotions » Self-examination

Let's Go Deeper!

Worthy Christian Devotions » Self-examination

by George Whitten, Editor of Worthy Devotions

James 4:7-10 Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Be afflicted, and mourn and weep! Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to heaviness. Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up.

Why is it that some believers seem to go much deeper in their walk with God than others? I believe it has to do with a desire to pursue God and not to stop until they feel His very presence in their lives. These believers decide not to settle for anything less than a growing, vibrant relationship with God, and God honors that desire for those who seek it.

Much of our walk is determined by how we desire Him. In James, the Lord promises that if you draw near to Him — He will draw near to you. Our enemy, Satan, uses everything in his power to prevent that vibrant relationship from forming – but press through – press on – because God wants this relationship very much.

I want more! God's heart and mind are infinitely deep and there's nothing more precious than knowing Him better and better. So I'm pushing through every obstacle to really show Him how much he means to me. Let's do it together.

Worthy Christian Devotions » Self-examination

Stop the Madness!

Worthy Christian Devotions » Self-examination

by George Whitten, Editor of Worthy Devotions

Psalms 73:24-28 You will guide me with Your counsel, And afterward receive me to glory. Whom have I in heaven but You? And there is none upon earth that I desire besides You. My flesh and my heart fail; But God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. For indeed, those who are far from You shall perish; You have destroyed all those who desert You for harlotry. But it is good for me to draw near to God; I have put my trust in the Lord God, That I may declare all Your works.

We’re back in Israel and still dealiing with jetlag. After completing a six-month tour of over 30,000 miles of driving across the United States, we can honestly say – we’re happy to be home — phew!

During the past six months of travelling with our two young children, we found it easier to drive through the night while the kids slept. We would often find ourselves arriving at our next destination in the middle of the night, only to update the news before sleeping a few short hours before sunrise. We were pretty exhausted most of the time, as you might imagine and many of your calls and emails went unanswered. Please forgive us, as we are trying to catch up.

But this made me think about whether the Lord was calling us during that time and we neglected to hear and answer, in the midst of our busyness. Hmmm. I hope not. There is one important thing, even in the midst of our hectic schedules, that cannot ever be neglected — it is spending time in God’s word and in prayer, asking for His direction and listening to His voice!

Let's strive to take a break from our craziness and make sure we’re spending ample time with the Lord. It sounds funny to say but, yeah, even full time ministers need to spend some time with the Lord…DUH!!

Worthy Christian Devotions » Self-examination

Start living on the Edge!

Worthy Christian Devotions » Self-examination

Psalm 1:2-3 But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night. And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.

The first thirty years of my life were spent in Baltimore Maryland and I have many fond memories there. One of these is a trail in the woods by the Patapsco River. I used to go fishing there with my dad and spent many a weekend hanging out with my friends, wading in the water.

Jogging down that same trail yesterday, I noticed for the first time an enormous oak tree growing right along the riverbank and the Lord reminded me of this passage. Each of us is a tree and the river is the Word of God. How big and fruitful we become depends on our proximity to the river.

It's encouraging to know that despite the spiritual drought around us — we don't have to wither! Everything we do can prosper but we must sink our roots deep down at the very edge — as close as we can get — to the living river of God's Word.

Worthy Christian Devotions » Self-examination