Immanuel Voices
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August 6, 2019, 4:00 AM

Daily Inspiration: Lessons from an Over Flowing River-Debris


Sweeps away Debris

 

John 13:8-9

Peter said to him, “You shall never wash my feet.” Jesus answered him, “If I do not wash you, you have no share with me.” Simon Peter said to him, “Lord, not my feet only but also my hands and my head!”

 

Thought for Today

The flood waters are finally receding. I was able to make my way over the bridge and onto one of the islands that had been flooded. I was struck by how clean it was. All the debris that usually littered the island was gone. The branches, trash and remanence of the geese had all been swept away. The same is true when the waters of faith rise in our lives. As we become more focused on God the Holy Spirit cleanses our lives. All the little annoying habits and thoughtless actions that clutter our lives begin to be swept away. We are not perfected. The big hole in the asphalt path on the island was not healed by the flood waters and neither will some of our more entrenched habits and character flaws. But it is refreshing to see the trash we had carelessly let clutter our lives washed away. This is one of the simple, but beautiful changes that occur when we are intentional about raising the waters of faith in our lives.

 

Prayer

Holy Spirit, let the flood of Your grace wash over me today and sweep away the debris that I have carelessly allowed to clutter my life. Amen.

 

Devotional Quote

We wouldn't think of rising in the morning without a face-wash, but we often neglect that purgative cleansing of the Word of the Lord. It wakes us up to our responsibility. — Jim Elliot

 

Quote of the Day

Admitting failure is quite cleansing, but never - pleasurable. — Michael Morpurgo

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August 5, 2019, 4:00 AM

Daily Inspiration: Lessons from an Over Flowing River-Upstream


Greatness Starts Upstream

 

Psalm 29:10-11
The Lord sits enthroned over the flood;
the Lord sits enthroned as king forever.
May the Lord give strength to his people!
May the Lord bless his people with peace!

 

Thought for Today

Here in the Fox River Valley the river has been at flood stage for several weeks. It is a marvel to behold the causeways, trails and even the islands in the midst of the river completely underwater. This water flows through our little town 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and never seems to go down at all. It is a remarkable amount of water! It reminds me of how growth as a disciple of Jesus works. It takes a great amount of work from the thunderstorms that poured forth upstream to generate what we are witnessing. Nature was working hard in places we could not see to raise our river. Discipleship works much the same way. It takes great effort in places that others cannot see to grow in your faith and life for God. You spend many hours reading the Bible, studying God’s truths, applying them to your life and discovering their power before others notice that your level has risen. If you do it passionately enough and consistently enough others will marvel at what appears to a sudden change. They think your faith and ability have begun to overflow their banks. What others do not see is all the effort that takes place upstream, out of sight, which raises your level for God. What are you doing intentionally to grow in your faith and capacity today that no one will see?

 

Prayer

Heavenly Father, help me to be committed to develop as Your disciple even when no one else sees the work I put in, that as I grow You may be glorified. Amen.

 

Devotional Quote

Spending time with God is the key to our strength and success in all areas of life. Be sure that you never try to work God into your schedule, but always work your schedule around Him ― Joyce Meyer

 

Quote of the Day

While the river of life glides along smoothly, it remains the same river; only the landscape on either bank seems to change. — Max Muller

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August 2, 2019, 6:00 AM

Daily Inspiration: Philippians 4:12-13


Philippians 4:12-13

I know how it be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.

 

Thought for Today

This may be one of the most profound things that Paul says. We all struggle to be satisfied with what we have. We look at our neighbor and wonder why they are so blessed. We see the blessings of others and grumble at what we have that feels meager by comparison. When we are in a season of blessing and everything is going well we tend to take all the credit and make sure others know just how blessed we are. Paul, on the other hand, knows the secret to living in times of plenty and want. His secret is that he looks to God at all times. He knows that God loves him and is working out His eternal purpose through Paul’s life. This daily trust in God allows Paul to rejoice in God’s blessing in good times and celebrate what God is doing through him in bad times. This gives him strength. And because he is always striving to see God at work in him he receives the strength sufficient for each task God gives. Are you feeling discontent today? Do your circumstances determine your mood and your strength? If so, lift your eyes to God and make Him your focus and you will find contentment and strength.

 

Prayer

Heavenly Father, help me to fix my eyes on You and Your beloved Son that my joy and strength would come from You and You alone. Amen.

 

Devotional Quote

Whenever the strength of God is not recognized as the source of our strength, we are breaking the First Commandment: Do not have any gods before me. John Piper
 

Quote of the Day

It is easier to build strong children than to repair broken men. ― Frederick Douglass

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