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Devotional- Make Your Choice

In the story of Adam and Eve and the Garden of Eden, God created Adam and placed him in the Garden of Eden to tend and keep it. He laid out clear boundaries and commanded Adam, “Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat it you shall surely die.” Genesis 2:16,17

Then the Lord said, “It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him.” Genesis 2:18

God took a rib from the man and created woman, and He brought her to Adam. They were both naked and not ashamed. Genesis 2:22

The story goes on and reveals that Eve was deceived by the serpent and ate the fruit from the forbidden tree; then she gave it to Adam to eat as well. Now man and woman were like God and had the knowledge of good and evil. They then knew they were naked and were ashamed– they hid from God and covered their nakedness with fig leaves. Genesis 3

Reflection

God provided an entire garden for Adam and Eve to eat from and placed ONE– yes, only ONE– tree in the midst and set a clear boundary to Adam. God gave Adam a clear choice when commanding him to not eat from the one forbidden tree.

In order for there to be a loving obedience to God there must be a choice for disobedience.

God gave Adam a clear boundary and a clear choice and told him the clear consequences for disobedience.

We are faced with these same choices on a daily basis. When we choose to obey God and trust in His plan, respecting His clear set boundaries, we show our love for Him.

Call to Action

Are you making choices that are clearly outside the boundaries of God? If so, what are they?

What do you feel God is telling you through the story of Adam and Eve’s disobedience?

What changes if any, do you feel God is telling you to make?

My Prayer for You

Heavenly Father,

Thank you Lord for giving us Your Word to inform us of the boundaries you have set for us, for our own protection. Thank you for Your promises to redeem us and transform us according to Your will.

Lord I pray for each person who reads this devotional. I lift each one up to You in the name of Jesus. I pray You would give them discernment over their life choices, expose to them the areas in their lives in which they are being disobedient. Open their hearts and minds to Your truth; give them wisdom through Your Word and courage and strength to commit to the changes You are showing them to make. Use the example of Adam and Eve to show each of us that there are clear choices, clear boundaries, and clear consequences. Guide us, redeem us, and transform us from the inside out.

We thank you for Your many blessings and claim Your will be done in each of our lives; it is in Jesus mighty name I pray.

Amen

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Daily Devo-Compromising Peace

Are you a people pleaser? Do you often put your own wants, beliefs, and needs to the side to keep peace among friends, family, or co-workers? Maybe you feel your worth comes from what others think, say, or feel about you. Who do you live your life striving to please- God or others?

I am a people pleaser. I know this is not what God has called me to be and I am working hard on learning to stand up for myself and God.

For many years I was living my life under the control of my father. Day after day I willfully gave him all the power over my life. Allowing him to control every decision I made- from when I do yard work to how I raised my child.

It was totally unhealthy!

The worst part was it went on for many years and I didn’t even realize it was happening. I was 30 years old when God showed me CLEARLY what He was doing in my life.

I was going through a period of trials and heartache lasting about four years that finally ended when I became FULLY obedient to God. When crying out to Him about the situations going on at the time God asked me, “Are you going to serve Gary your earthly father, or Me, God THE father? You can’t do both!”

I wept. I knew EXACTLY what God was saying to me.

There were countless times that I did the opposite of what God was telling me to do to please my father and avoid any verbal abuse, physical abuse, or confrontation of any kind.

I longed for my father to be loving, positively involved, and simply proud of who I was- not who he wanted me to be.

The mentioning of God would make his skin crawl. Unfortunately, my father had many demons that he carried throughout his life starting in his own childhood. This made it very difficult when trying to serve God- yet please him.

God wants us to be fully obedient to Him- He doesn’t want sacrifice’s or partial obedience- He wants us ALL IN. I would pray and ask for direction and wisdom- God would show me something and tell me to take action- then I would try to compromise with Him to be obedient yet not upset anyone else.

We can NOT only do a small part of what God tells us to do. When we know He is leading us we have to be bold in Him. Stepping out and standing up in love and not compromising our own morals or relationship with God so others won’t be upset.

Living in a compromised peace is not what God wants for us. We are not to me conformed to this world but TRANSFORMED by the renewing of our mind through Jesus.

And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.

Romans 12:2 NKJV

The world is becoming harder and harder to be a Christian in but we need to be sure we are making our own decisions and not allowing others to influence them. The Bible tells us to stand FIRM on His word and put on the whole armor of God. Our only responsibility is do what God wants us to do.

Watch, stand fast in the faith, be brave, be strong.

1 Corinthians 16:13 NKJV

Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.

Ephesians 6:11 NKJV

When we spend time studying God’s word and seeking Him- He lights a fire within our heart that can not be put out. You should know however, when you are on fire for God, people in the world will reject you- BUT He has overcome the world and we should not fear.

Yes, and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution.

2 Timothy 3:12 NKJV

These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.”

John 16:33 NKJV

We are not created to blend in with the world. In fact, it is quite the opposite- we are created to standout- to be bold and courageous- and to lean NOT on our own understanding.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
And lean not on your own understanding;

Proverbs 3:5 NKJV

God promises if we stand firm in our faith-seek Him above all else- and love with all our heart, mind, and soul- than we will have a peace that surpasses all understanding.

and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

Philippians 4:7 NKJV

God is with you wherever you go! We do not have to live a life in compromised peace. It is time to stand-up, stand-out, and stand-frim on the truth.

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”

Joshua 1:9 NKJV

Fear not, for I am with you;
Be not dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you,
Yes, I will help you,
I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.

Isaiah 41:10 NKJV

Prayer

Heavenly Father,

Thank you for this beautiful day and for offering us peace that surpasses all understanding. Lord, the world can be such a sinful and misleading representation of You and our destiny, help us to have discernment and knowledge. Let us not lean on our own understanding but trust in You with all our hearts. It is election day Lord, and the stress and tension is very tight. I pray each person would be lead by Your Holy Spirit and remember regardless of the outcome, You are still in control.

Lord I pray that each of us would have the courage to stand strong on Your word and stand up for what is right and true in You. Lord, help us to remember that we are all children of God and You want the world to choose love over hate- peace over strife, and truth over deceit.

Guide our steps and show us the way as we move forward through the election process. I pray Your will be done and the hearts of people all over the world would be open to see You.

Lord I pray for both candidates that each would hold themselves with grace and dignity. That you would protect each of them and their families. Lord I pray people would find love in their hearts and choose to support and uplift regardless of the outcome. I pray for the safety of America, guidance moving forward, and that love would fill the hearts of Your people all across the world. In Jesus mighty name I pray.

Amen