Monday, December 01, 2014

December 1, 2014 … “Got That T-shirt”

Daily Berry Patch Devotions in 2014 - Day 335

Devotional Song: Go to this link  … Please take the time to take in the lyrics with Steven Curtis Chapman singing his contemporary song, His Strength Is Perfect, … reminding all Christians of the strength of God, which, in His faithfulness, is available to any who’re willing to surrender to receive it to cover our weaknesses

Highlight Passage #1 - NKJV Hebrews 4: 15 … Jesus, our High Priest in Heaven, empathizes totally with our condition …
  15 For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. 
Highlight Context - Hebrews 4: 11-16 [NKJV]USE THIS LINK …   God knows what T-shirt we’re wearing in life … He’s been there and has the T-shirt of having defeated temptation … 

Reference Passage #1 - Psalm 119: 9-11 [NKJV]USE THIS LINK …   God’s prescription and power for dealing with temptations

Reference Passage #2 - Matthew 4: 1-11 [NKJV]USE THIS LINK …   Jesus models how we are to deal with temptation … by being able to wield the sword of the Spirit

Reference Passage #3 - NKJV 1st Corinthians 10: 11-13 … Especially note verse # 13 [in bold], where Paul outlines God’s faithfulness in His helping us deal with temptation …
  11 Now all these things happened to them as examples, and they were written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the ages have come. 12 Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall. 13 No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it. 

My Journal for Today: Today’s Our Daily Bread devotional entry, authored by Anne Celas, refers to a growing problem in our culture - the struggles so many deal with in battling addictions of various sorts [see attached photo]. In fact the ministry which God has called my wife and I to lead [see this link] deals with the growing social plague of sexual addition in our culture/world. And this is personal with me because, for 22 years of my life, I was deeply addicted to pornography; so, I know VERY PERSONALLY of how temptation to sin can can become an obsessive/compulsive influence in our everyday battles of life.

 Yes, when it comes to dealing with the battles of addictive temptation in our lives, as the kids say these days, “I’ve been there, done that, and I’ve got that T-shirt!” … But perhaps, reading here, you’re dealing some stronghold of sin, which perhaps has even become an addictive influence in your life. Well, God knows how we feel in our human weakness [see the Hebrews 4 passage as well as Paul’s promise from God in 1st Corinthians 10: 13]. Yes, God’s strength is there to help us deal with even the most powerful influences which tempt us to sin; and God has even given a powerful prescription for dealing with sin and temptation - yes, even addiction.

 Take note above of how Jesus modeled His own battle strategy for dealing with our weaknesses and temptations. Read and meditate on the Matthew 4: 1-11 passage (also found in Luke 4: 1-13, where Satan did his best to tempt our Lord to sin. But Jesus used God’s prescription for our dealing with temptation by wielding God’s word as His sword and strength to cover His human weakness. And Psalm 119: 9-11 lays out how God wants us to battle temptation to sin in our lives. [I hope you have that passage memorized and internalized!]

 God’s word is our only offensive weapon to deal with all those temptations or addictions depicted in the attached photo. And as Steven Curtis Chapman sings in the linked song today, God’s power, through His word, is there for us to wield and defeat the addictive and tempting powers that Satan will use to bring us down. In fact, at one time in my life my life T-shirt would have read “ADDICTED TO PORN;” … but now the T-shirt I wear, which identifies me, reads “ADDICTED TO GOD’s WORD!!” That’s why I’m here everyday digging in to God’s truth and doing all I can to allow it to infuse me with God’s power.

What does your T-shirt say?!

My Prayer for Today … Lord, … You have shown me Your power; … now I need to wear Your sword, practice it, and use it to battle Your enemies daily. Amen

Blogger Note: Everyday during this year, my daily devotional blogs are influenced by the reading and study of the online devotional blog entitled Our Daily Bread, distributed online via email by RBC Ministries. If you GO TO THIS LINK on the date of my blog, you can read/study the ODB blogs; or you can subscribe to the blog via email at that site.

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