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Today's Daily Devotional
Let God's Word shine light on your step today
as you grow in your relationship with Christ.
This is what the Scripture says: “Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts as you did in the rebellion.”
(Heb. 3:15)
Today's Devotional is from our series
Following As God Leads
Just as God led the Israelites day by day and even through the nights, so He desires to lead us. We only have to watch HIM, and follow in His steps as He directs us.

God has a certain place He wants each of us to be, and at certain times. If we will but trust Him, He will guide our foot steps each day at a time, and when we lay down He will watch over us, and even give us a cloud of fire to point the way as we week Him in the quietness at night.
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Devotional: I am Because He Is
Jan. 25th


Christ-Like Friendship and Support

Holding hands in fellowship with Christ-like friendship seeing how to connect the truth of God's Word with everyday life, while learning to walk together (hand and hand) through the pages of His Word.

TODAY IN HIS WORD COMES FROM
(Acts 17:24-27 NIV)

"The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth
and does not live in temples built by hands. And he is not served by human hands,
as if he needed anything, because he himself gives all men life and breath and everything else.  From one man he made every nation of men, that they should inhabit the whole earth;
and he determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live. 
God did this so that men would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him,
though he is not far from each one of us. "


THOUGHT TO PONDER:
It started with one man. God, in His infinite wisdom, wanted to create a nation to show generations to come that He is God, so He had a plan. “God began by making one person, and from him came all the different people who live everywhere in the world. God decided exactly when and where they must live” (Acts 17:26 NCV). Just think, no matter where you are living right now, there is a reason and it serves a purpose even if you don’t see it or understand it. It doesn’t matter if things are or are not going well for you-- know you didn’t get there by yourself. There is a reason why you were born the year you were. Even if someone tells you that you were an accident, YOU WEREN’T.

TODAY’S INSIGHT INTO HIS WORD:
Throughout the Bible we read that God CHOOSES who He wants to lead His people and then He sends him. God chose Abram, and then He sent him to live where God needed Abram to be. Next, He gave Abram a new name. He didn’t tell Abram, “Hey, I’m going change a few things.” Nope, that wasn’t nearly enough for our Lord. He told Abram, “You are going to become a whole new man.” But even before this, when Abram was first created in his mother's womb-- God knew who this man was to become. So God set him aside until it was time.

God's Word says He put another young man aside too. Read with me Jer. 1 The Lord Calls Jeremiah. The Lord spoke his word to me, saying: "Before I made you in your mother's womb, I chose you. Before you were born, I set you apart for a special work. I appointed you as a prophet to the nations." Then I said, "But Lord God, I don't know how to speak. I am only a boy." But the Lord said to me, "Don't say, 'I am only a boy.' You must go everywhere I send you, and you must say everything I tell you to say. Don't be afraid of anyone, because I am with you to protect you," says the Lord. Then the Lord reached out his hand and touched my mouth. He said to me, "See, I am putting my words in your mouth. Today I have put you in charge of nations and kingdoms. You will pull up and tear down, destroy and overthrow, build up and plant" (verses 4-9 NCV).

My friend, everything about you from the top of your head to the tip of your toes and everything in you-- all your quirks, all your fancies, all your likes and dislikes... you have been uniquely made. His Word says; Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord, the people he chose for his inheritance. From heaven the Lord looks down and sees all mankind; from his dwelling place he watches all who live on earth-- he who forms the hearts of all, who considers everything they do (Ps. 33:12-15 NIV).

My friend, God does not make accidents, God does not have an oops. You are who you are because that is who God has made you to be. You can have 120 people giving their opinion of you-- but all that matters is what God says about you. When you look in the mirror, you can say to yourself-- "I am" because the one who made you IS! You may not be the Abraham transformed from Abram-- yet, but rest assured you will be. Whatever God has called you to be, whatever God has fitted you to do... He will not quit until He has brought you to where He wants you to be. No plans or purposes of His for your life can be withheld. Nothing can be taken from His hand that which is His. And you are HIS-- He has called you by name. Have confidence my friend that God knows where He is taking you and how to get you there. And He will give you who and what you need to do the job He has designed for you.

When Andrew first led Peter to Jesus, Peter had no idea that later he would set his world upside down. He was a fisherman-- a businessman-- and very successful. But God had no intentions of leaving Peter where he was. For half his life Peter fished for fish and built a business and became a "self made man." And even though it was a good life, and he did very well, it wasn't the full purpose God had for him. There was a second half of the book yet to be uncovered. What Peter didn't understand was that the first half of his life was only preparing him in ways he didn't know, for what was to come. God had put so much more in him and Jesus nurtured and brought it out. And in the end, Peter helped to change his world and spread the gospel in ways he probably never imagined. He had no idea that what he was doing would not only help the people of his day-- but for generations to come. A leader always does.

Simon Peter wasn't the only one to have a new name and set his world on fire. Saul-- later Paul-- did too. Make no mistake... the life Saul was living doing what he thought he was supposed to do, was only in step until God said it was time. And then Paul's life too was forever changed. After his conversion, God realigned him and set him aside for important work too. In the church at Antioch there were these prophets and teachers: Barnabas, Simeon (also called Niger), Lucius (from the city of Cyrene), Manaen (who had grown up with Herod, the ruler), and Saul. They were all worshiping the Lord and fasting for a certain time. During this time the Holy Spirit said to them, "Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul to do a special work for which I have chosen them." So after they fasted and prayed, they laid their hands on Barnabas and Saul and sent them out (Acts 13:1-3 NCV).

It occurs to me that in football--it is the quarterback that makes the biggest impression. A team is "rated" based off the quarterback. If the team wins, the quarterback is named. However if the team looses you hear about every blunder the quarterback made! You see the team has to have its leader. Someone that really is in the center of it all and can take the ups and the downs and inspire the rest of his team to keep going on. But he doesn't do it by himself. A quarterback is no good without the men flanking him to the left and the right. Without the rest of the team, he is just a lone man. But without him the team is crippled. And every man on his team needs to be in tip top shape, and play at their very best. If they don't the whole team suffers. But the quarterback takes the heat. 

My friend, whatever position you are in-- every teammate is counted and needed. They ALL have to be there, or they can't play. Your team needs you too. Just know that you matter. The day God breathed life into you-- the moment you took your first breath, God said, "Happy Birthday" and I do too.

PRAYING IN FAITH:
Father God, thank You for this day You have given to us. Thank You that You know all of our days, and when we come in and when we go out. You know when we sit down and when we stand up, and Your Word says we are wonderfully made. Lord, please be with this reader today. Please watch over them and keep them on the path You would have for them.
In Christ Jesus Name,
Amen.