DAY 7: PRAY FOR ENDURANCE – SHANE GETTLE

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SHANE GETTLE

SCRIPTURE

Galatians 6:9
“So, let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up.”

DEVOTION

This verse has kept me motivated through some of the best seasons and helped get me through some of the worst. Whenever I am feeling discouraged or defeated, I turn to this verse. Many of you may have a “life verse” that is special to you more than any other…this is mine.

Over our lifetime, we will all have seasons of disappointment or discouragement, but through it all, we are reminded to “never give up.” John 16:33 tells us, I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth, you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” What a great reminder that whatever it is we are facing today… God has already overcome it FOR us.

As so many of you know, living as a Christ-follower is not always easy, but we have peace that if we keep our head up, keep moving forward, and keep our eyes on Christ — God will always provide a path that ends with a harvest of blessing. Galatians 6:9 reminds us that God has a plan and, and although we may not see it in the valley, He always provides the harvest at “just the right time.”

This season has been tough for all of us, but I can promise you on the authority of God’s Word, that He will come through and provide a “harvest” for those who don’t give up.

PRAYER

Heavenly Father, we come to you with a grateful heart and a reminder that you will always provide. Lord, give us the endurance to not just get through this season, but to learn from this season. We may be in a difficult season, but You have given us the endurance to get through difficult seasons in the past, and I know that You will do it again.

So, Lord, help us to not grow tired or weary of doing good, but instead help us to keep finding ways to do Your will by blessing, serving, and encouraging others. Give us the confidence we need to know that “At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we do not give up”!  We pray this in Jesus’ name, Amen! 

ACTION STEP

  • Think back on your life and write down (3) difficult situations that God turned into a blessing.
  • Thank Him for always coming through.

IDEAS:

  • Find a way to bless and encourage someone today that may be going through a difficult season. Remember that we are “blessed to be a blessing”. (Gen. 12:2).
  • Look for opportunities to tell others about Christ today. You may not always feel ready…but God will always give you the tools to succeed. Wayne Gretzky once said, “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take”. Don’t be afraid to “take a shot” and see how God will bless your conversation.

FITNESS

IDEAS:

  • Run the seventh mile out of the total of 21.
  • Do 16 sit-ups and 16 push-ups.

DAY 6: PRAY FOR FOSTER CARE AND ADOPTION – PASTOR RYAN IVY

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PASTOR RYAN IVY

SCRIPTURE

Matthew 25:36&40
36 I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’ … 40 And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’

DEVOTION

People often think about what they would say to the people closest to them if they only had a few days left to live. In this passage, Jesus knew His time was coming to an end, and he was concerned with talking about caring for people. No one cares more about the vulnerable and outcast than Jesus. Over and over again, Scripture calls us to speak up for the people that cannot speak for themselves and to care for those that struggle. (Proverbs 31:8-9)

There may not be a more vulnerable group today than orphans and children in the foster care system. In Clark County, NV there are over 5,000 children in the foster care system, and we only have 580 approved foster homes. We desperately need prayer for more people to open their homes to care for kids the way Jesus would. We must make it easier for families to foster by providing prayer, support, meals, childcare, and other things to families that decide to make the leap and care for vulnerable kids. We are not all called to foster kiddos, but we are all called to do something. What is your part?

Caring for kids from hard places is messy and one of the most difficult things a person can do, but that is exactly what Jesus is talking about in Matthew 25. We aren’t just doing it for the kids in that moment, we are doing it for Jesus. James goes on to Say, “27 Religion that is pure and undefiled before God the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.” James 1:27

PRAYER

Father, I come before You in Jesus name by the power of Your Holy Spirit. I need your help to care for the vulnerable. Show me opportunities to serve kids in my city and make a difference in the foster care system. Lord, give current foster families the endurance to continually make a difference. Please meet all the needs of every kid in our county and strengthen families and empower them to care for their children. Awaken more Christians to these issues and send more laborers. We pray all this in Jesus name, amen!

ACTION STEP

  • Examine your life and identify ways that you might could serve a foster child, foster family, or even become a foster parent.

IDEAS:

  • Send an encouraging message to a foster or adoptive parent.
  • Ask someone to tell you more about foster care or adoption.
  • Encourage someone else to join you in praying for foster care and adoption

FITNESS

IDEAS:

  • Run the sixth mile out of the total of 21.
  • Do 15 sit-ups and 15 push-ups.

DAY 5: PRAY FOR CONFIDENCE TO DRAW NEAR TO GOD – PASTOR MIKE BUSSEY

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PASTOR MIKE BUSSEY

SCRIPTURE

Hebrews 7:23-25
The former priests were many in number, because they were prevented by death from continuing in office, 24 but he holds his priesthood permanently, because he continues forever. 25 Consequently, he is able to save to the uttermost those who draw near to God through him, since he always lives to make intercession for them.

DEVOTION

Yesterday Pastor Heiden talked about wisdom that comes from the fear of the Lord. Today I want to talk about the confidence we should have to draw near to the God we rightly fear.  

If you are anything like me, I tend to think often about what Jesus did for me… back then.  

He lived, he died, and he rose from the grave. He paid for my sin debt in full on the cross, and as a result, I have peace with God through Him, and my eternal future in Heaven is secure. And to be sure, that is to be celebrated and thought of regularly. But this Scripture is teaching us that Jesus is still doing something for us right now. 

In the days of the Bible, the priests would go to God on behalf of the people of Israel, and they would offer sacrifices every day to cover their sins. But, of course, this was all pointing forward to a day when someone would come, a Savior who would permanently solve the sin problem between God and humanity. As Christians, we know that that person was Jesus (John 1:29). But this priest was different than the rest. He didn’t sacrifice a lamb for us. Instead, Jesus, our Great High Priest, sacrificed himself. Just try to imagine the love (I dare you) that he had for you and me to give his life for us (John 15:13). 

Isn’t it wonderful that after Jesus gave his life for us that he rose from the grave? In fact, he is alive at this very moment. Think of it. And he is still our Great High Priest because, as this Scripture teaches, he lives forever! That should be comforting news for you to hear today. Here are just a few reasons why: 

First, the love that Jesus had for you back then when he died for you burns just as bright at this very moment as it ever has.  

Second, Jesus is a High Priest that continually intercedes for you because he lives forever! Your desperate need for Jesus to intercede on your behalf will not outlive him! 

Finally, and maybe the best news of all, you may ask yourself, “can Jesus really forgive me? At times, I am so sinful that Jesus couldn’t possibly save someone like me.” Maybe you are an “uttermost” sinner.” But, my friend, let the Word of God reassure your heart today. He is able to save you to the uttermost. You may be an uttermost sinner, but he is an uttermost Savior!  

PRAYER

Jesus, when I sin, my first instinct is often to run and hide from you. Would you please help me remember that you are an uttermost Savior, that you live, even now, and you love me? God, right now, I am asking you for the confidence I need to draw near to you at all times, even when I feel the weight of my sin so deeply. Amen.

ACTION STEP

  • Remind a fellow Christian of the good news that Jesus is able to save them to the uttermost

IDEAS:

  • Spend some time meditating on the truth that as you read this devotional right now, you have a Savior in Heaven that is interceding for you.  
  • Read Hebrews 4:14-16 and thank the Lord that he is able to sympathize with your weaknesses.  

FITNESS

IDEAS:

  • Run the fifth mile out of the total of 21.
  • Do 14 sit-ups and 14 push-ups.

DAY 4: PRAY FOR WISDOM FROM ABOVE – PASTOR HEIDEN RATNER

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PASTOR HEIDEN RATNER

SCRIPTURE

Proverbs 1:7
1 “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction.”

DEVOTION

Today marks the first day of September which for me triggers one thing – the book of Proverbs. Every first of the month my mind is drawn to a spiritual principle I learned over a decade ago, that being to read the “Proverb of the Day.” Or another way to put it is to read the specific chapter in the book of Proverbs that coincides with each day of the month. With today being the first, I felt it was only right to observe Proverbs 1 and pray for wisdom that comes down from the Lord Himself. (James 3:17)

Wisdom is something we all long for, and If you don’t, you should. The wiser we become the less mistakes we make. King Solomon tells us in Proverbs 3:13-15 that wisdom is far better than riches and gold, and then again in Proverbs 7:4, he titles wisdom our “intimate friend.” So, how do we get wisdom? You might ask. I believe there are several right ways to answer this question, however, we will focus on three of those answers below.

     1) Ask the Lord

James the brother of Jesus makes it clear in the opening remarks of his letter that: “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.” (James 1:5) Wisdom is a free gift from the Lord that we should take Him up on. It all starts with an ask!

     2) Seek for It

In Proverbs 2:1-7, Solomon encourages the reader to make their ears attentive to wisdom, to incline their hearts to understanding, and to seek for it like silver. In other words, Solomon is saying don’t just sit there expecting to get wiser, rather put the work in to become wiser!

     3) Fear the Lord

In this first chapter of Proverbs, Solomon reminds the reader that it’s the “fear of the LORD” that leads to an increased knowledge and wisdom. Dr. Tony Evans states in his Kingdom Man study that the fear of the LORD means to take God seriously. When we begin to take God, His Word, and His will for our lives seriously, we then enter into the beginning stages of wisdom. Do you fear the Lord more than you fear the opinions of man? Wisdom hangs in the balance of your answer.

“The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom; all those who practice it have a good understanding. His praise endures forever!” – Psalm 111:10

PRAYER

God, You are the Father of wisdom. It’s true that there’s nobody wiser than you! We ask You today to grow us up in wisdom. We need Your wisdom in how to deal with the seasons we are living in. Whether that be collectively or/and individually, we call on Your name for an increase in wisdom. In Jesus name, amen!

ACTION STEP

  • At some point today read all of Proverbs chapter 1. Commit to reading the Proverb chapter of the day throughout the entire month of September.

IDEAS:

  • Journal your takeaways while reading through Proverbs this month.
  • Invite a friend to go through Proverbs with you.
  • Identify an area(s) you need wisdom in and then take it to the Lord in prayer.
  • Ask yourself what items you are fearing the opinion of man more than you are fear the LORD?

FITNESS

IDEAS:

  • Run the forth mile out of the total of 21.
  • Do 13 sit-ups and 14 push-ups.