John 3:16 Arrow For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life ^DREAM interpretation ministry




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The word for today- A daily devotional 7
#1
Heart

What Keeps Us From Serving Others? (1)
Wednesday, 03 June 2015
'To answer before listening--that is folly...' Proverbs
18:13 NIV
To serve others effectively, you must be attuned to what
they need. What keeps us from doing that? First:
assumption. A lady in an airport lounge bought a packet
of biscuits and sat down to read the newspaper. She
heard a rustling noise and looked up to see the man
beside her helping himself to the biscuits. Not wanting to
make a scene, she leaned over and took one herself,
hoping he’d get the message. Then she heard more
rustling. She couldn’t believe it. The man was helping
himself to another biscuit! There was only one left! She
watched in disbelief as he broke the remaining biscuit in
two, pushed half across to her, popped the other half in
his mouth, and left. She was still furious when her flight
was announced. Imagine how she felt when she opened
her handbag to get her ticket out—and found her
unopened packet of biscuits! Now be honest, didn’t you
assume the stranger was helping himself to her biscuits?
Most people do and that tells us a lot about ourselves!
Too often we’re guilty of making assumptions about
people and once you put someone in a box, it’s hard to
think of them any other way. Do you agree? Every time a
good tailor sees a client, he takes new measurements. He
never assumes they’re the same size as they were the last
time. That’s a good policy. Never make assumptions
about someone’s background, profession, race, gender,
age, nationality, politics, faith, or other factors. Once you
do, you stop paying attention and miss clues that can help
you to know what they really need.
SoulFood: Ezek 1-4, Matt 15:1-14, Ps 4, Prov 14:17-20
This is The Word For Today


Heart
#2
Heart

What Keeps Us From Serving Others? (2)
Thursday, 04 June 2015
'...Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought...'
Romans 12:3 NIV
Another thing that’ll keep you from serving others is
arrogance. What others think and feel isn’t important to
you. Arrogant people seldom meet people on common
ground. They don’t believe they should have to because
by their own estimation they live on higher ground and
shouldn’t have to descend to anyone else’s level. They
expect others to come to them. Justice Louis D. Brandeis
observed: ‘Nine–tenths of the serious controversies that
arise in life result from misunderstanding, from one man
not knowing the facts which to the other man seem
important, or otherwise failing to appreciate his point of
view.’
It’s ridiculous for anyone to think they have all the
answers. Such people can become opinionated, narrow–
minded and arrogant, listening only to their own thoughts
and ignoring advice and suggestions from others. When
your overriding goal is to build a case for your own
viewpoint, people get turned off if you have a ‘my way or
no way’ attitude. To win them you must be willing to build
a relationship. The letters in the word ‘silent’ also form
the word ‘listen’. Relationships are built by listening to
people, loving them, learning from them, and leaving them
better off than you found them.
‘A wise man will hear and increase learning, and a man of
understanding will attain wise counsel.’ (Proverbs 1:5
NKJV)
SoulFood: Ezek 5-9, Matt 15:15-28, Ps 124, Prov
14:21-24
This is The Word For Today

Heart Heart
#3
:) :)

Heart


What Keeps Us From Serving Others? (3)
Friday, 05 June 2015
'But they paid no attention...' Matthew 22:5 NIV
Indifference is the third thing that keeps us from serving
others. A well–known comedian quipped, ‘Scientists
announced today that they’d found a cure for apathy.
However, they claim no one has shown the slightest bit of
interest in it.’ When it comes to communicating, that
could be said of many of us; we’re indifferent to how we
come across. We may not necessarily feel superior to
others, but we don’t go out of our way to get to know them
either. Why? Because it’s hard work! In reality,
indifference is another form of selfishness that keeps us
from connecting with people.
Novelist George Eliot put it like this: ‘Try to care about
something in this vast world besides the gratification of
small selfish desires. Try to care for what is best in
thought and action—something that is good apart from the
accidents of your own lot. Look on other lives... See what
their troubles are, and how they are borne.’ People truly
appreciate it when you make the effort, no matter how
small, to try to see things from their point of view. Paul
writes, ‘Be kindly, affectionate to one another with
brotherly love, in honour giving preference to one
another.’ (Romans 12:10 NKJV).
Everybody you meet is wrestling with a fear or fighting a
battle and, if you’re caring and sensitive, God will give
you a word to lift them. Isaiah said, ‘The Lord God has
given me the tongue of the learned, that I should know
how to speak a word in season to him who is
weary…’ (Isaiah 50:4 NKJV) What a gift—to be able to lift
someone who is struggling.
SoulFood: Ezek 10-13, Matt 15:29-39, Ps 129, Prov
14:25-28
This is The Word For Today


:) :) Heart
#4
Heart :)


What Keeps Us From Serving Others? (4)



'...through love serve one another.' Galatians 5:13 NKJV
Control is the fourth thing that deters us from serving.
While it’s important to focus on understanding others, we
must also be authentic and open so they can understand
us. Because it can make us feel vulnerable, many of us
are unwilling to be transparent. Former U.S. Navy
Captain Mike Abrashoff observes: ‘Some leaders feel that
by keeping people in the dark, they maintain a measure of
control. But that is a leader’s folly and an organisation’s
failure. Secrecy spawns isolation, not success.
Knowledge is power, yes, but what leaders need is
collective power, and that requires collective knowledge.
I found that the more people knew what the goals were,
the better buy–in I got—and the better the results we
achieved together.’ Any time people sense information is
being withheld from them, it creates distance. They feel
like outsiders, and, as a result, morale drops along with
their performance. In Lead, Follow, or Get Out of the Way,
Jim Lundy writes about what he calls the ‘Subordinates’
Lament’: ‘We, the uninformed, working for the
inaccessible, are doing the impossible for the ungrateful!’
Ever feel like that? Then there’s the ‘Mushroom Farm
Lament’ which goes like this: ‘We feel we’re being kept in
the dark. Every once in a while someone comes around
and spreads manure on us. But when our heads pop up,
they’re chopped off and then we’re canned.’
Good leaders don’t isolate themselves, and they don’t
deliberately keep people in the dark. They inform them,
and include them in the decision–making process
whenever possible. If you’re serious about serving others,
open up. Let people know who you are and what you
believe.
SoulFood: Ezek 14:1-16:52, Matt 16:1-12, Ps 1, Prov
14:29-32
This is The Word For Today

:)
#5
:)


Understanding Your Temptations (1)


'...don't let us yield to temptation...' Matthew 6:13 NLT
Many of us suffer unnecessarily because of our
misconceptions about temptation. The first one is:
expecting your temptations to cease—or at least de-
crease. When the Israelites entered the Promised Land
they had the same expectation. They were surprised that
the Canaanites were still in the land. So they got
discouraged, thinking they must have gone the wrong
way. ‘Surely this couldn’t be the land of promise.’
God’s Word makes it clear that the Christian life, from
start to finish, is warfare. Paul says we are called to ‘…
wrestle…against principalities, against powers, against
the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual
wickedness in high places’ (Ephesians 6:12 KJV), and
your level of temptation increases as you draw closer to
God. Notice: when Israel first left Egypt, God didn’t lead
them through Philistine territory ‘though that was shorter.
For God said, “…If they face war, they might change their
minds and return to Egypt.”’ (Exodus 13:17 NIV) God
understood their fledgling faith and protected them from
their enemies.
But later, when their faith had grown, He permitted them
to face seven powerful nations. Just like the Promised
Land, the promised life of victory requires you to deal with
temptation and wrestle your way through to victory,
believing that ‘…greater is He that is in you, than he that is
in the world.’ (1 John 4:4 KJV) Indeed, their enemy’s
attack proved that Israel was in the Promised Land. So
experiencing temptations is proof you are truly abiding in
Christ.
SoulFood: Gen 1:1-2:3, John 1:1-18
This is The Word For Today

:)
#6
Heart :)

Understanding Your Temptations (2)


'Blessed is the man who endures temptation...' James
1:12 NKJV
The second misconception is: temptation is sin. The devil
wants you to blame yourself for the temptations you
experience. Why? Because when you believe that you are
the source of it, you feel condemned and discouraged. As
you indulge in feelings of discouragement, you become an
easy prey and Satan convinces you to go ahead and yield
to the temptation. Ironically, you yield to sin through the
fear of having already fallen. No, the temptation itself isn’t
sin; the sin only occurs when you yield to it!
Many of us feel like we’re spiritually deficient, distant
from God, even phonies because we think we initiated the
temptation ourselves. Imagine a burglar in your house,
and when you detect him he accuses you of being the
burglar! Would you believe him? Of course not! Yet that’s
Satan’s approach with us. After he tempts us, he accuses
with thoughts like, ‘A real Christian would never have
such thoughts!’ Knowing our own weakness, his
accusations sound plausible and we believe him. Then we
feel condemned, spiral into discouragement, and yield to
the temptation.
Understand this: condemnation comes from Satan (1
Timothy 3:6). The Bible says, ‘Therefore, there is now no
condemnation for those who are in Christ
Jesus.’ (Romans 8:1 NIV) When Satan sends temptation,
the Holy Spirit goes to work in us, helping us to reject his
suggestions and reminding us of Jesus’ availability to
help us triumph. ‘Because He Himself suffered when He
was tempted, He is able to help those who are being
tempted.’ (Hebrews 2:18 NIV) So when you’re tempted,
reject Satan’s condemnation and reach for Christ’s
overcoming assistance.
SoulFood: Ezek 16:53-19:14, Matt 16:13-28, Ps 48, Prov
14:33-35
This is The Word For Today


Heart :)
#7
Heart :)


Understanding Your Temptations (3)



'...count it all joy when you fall into various trials.' James
1:2 NKJV
Satan knows that when you recognise him as the source
of your temptation, he loses his advantage. He knows that
when you understand he initiated the temptation, you’ll
recoil from it faster than if you think you yourself are the
source of it. If Satan approached you and said, ‘I’ve come
to make you sin and feel condemned,’ your vulnerability
to his temptations would evaporate! He won’t tell you that
—but if you remember it you’ll have the advantage over
him.
As Paul puts it, ‘…we are not ignorant about Satan’s
scheming.’ (2 Corinthians 2:11 GWT) Another
misconception is that temptation is time lost and effort
wasted. In long periods of temptation we feel like we’ve
lost ground rather than gained it. No! Withstanding
temptation is ‘[fighting] the good fight of faith…’ (1
Timothy 6:12 NKJV), and that’s when God develops your
character. ‘When all kinds of…temptations crowd into your
lives…Realise that they come to…produce in you the
quality of endurance…’ and when that happens, ‘…you will
find you have become men [and women] of mature
character…’ (James 1:2–4 PHPS).
Indeed, your compensation goes far beyond your present
development to the reaping of eternal rewards. ‘…be
exceedingly glad on this account, though now for a little
while you may be distressed by trials and suffer
temptations, so that [the genuineness] of your faith may be
tested, [your faith] which is infinitely more precious than
the perishable gold which is tested and purified by fire.’ (1
Peter 1:6–7 AMP) Add to this God’s glorious guarantee:
‘Blessed is the man who endures temptation... he will
receive the crown of life...’ (James 1:12 NKJV)
SoulFood: Ezek 20-21, Matt 17:1-13, Ps 132:1-10, Prov
15:1-4
This is The Word For Today
#8
:) Heart


Commit to It!



'...O Lord of hosts, if you will indeed look on the affliction
of your servant... [and] give to your servant a son, then I
will give him to the Lord...' 1 Samuel 1:11 NKJV
After arriving in the New World, the Spanish explorer,
Cortez, took his crew off their ships, then set the ships on
fire as the sailors watched in confusion and horror. By
that one act, Cortez sealed their commitment to explore
new territory and ensured they’d never give in or go back.
Guess what? Having no alternative clears your perception,
does away with procrastination, and helps you make up
your mind. When you’re in a corner, you learn to reach
deeper inside yourself, and in so doing you discover God–
given strengths you never knew existed.
When you’re up against a deadline, it releases a creative
flow within you. For example, nothing increases your
commitment like the threat of failure or the risk of
embarrassment. In The Tyranny of E–mail, John Freeman
says, ‘Attention is one of the most valuable modern
resources. If we waste it on frivolous communication, we
will have nothing left when we really need it.’ Distractions
drain your energy, blur your focus, and disrupt your
momentum.
Projects fail, companies collapse, and marriages are
damaged because of the way distractions deplete our
resources and destroy our relationships. Don’t get to the
end of your life only to look back and discover you
forfeited things which were truly significant, to make way
for things that added nothing of value. Hannah made a
vow to God that resulted in the birth of her son Samuel,
who became one of Israel’s greatest Judges. Be a person
who honours your commitments.
SoulFood: Ezek 22-23, Matt 17:14-27, Ps 132:11-18,
Prov 15:5-7
This is The Word For Today

:) Heart
#9
Heart :)


Get Your Spending Under Control


'Owe nothing to anyone--except for your obligation to
love one another...' Romans 13:8
If you think winning the lottery would solve all your
problems, you couldn’t be more wrong! Almost half of
those who become overnight millionaires end up bankrupt
within a few years. Why? For a variety of reasons: bad
business deals, extravagant living, crazy schemes, and
fast–talking relatives. And here’s another one—a big one!
Believing that they now have the Midas touch and that
Lady Luck is on their side, they continue to gamble at an
even higher level—and end up losing it all. Try to
understand this: unless you spend less than you earn, no
amount of income will ever be enough! So if you’re wise,
when you get a salary in-crease or an unexpected
windfall you won’t adopt a more extravagant lifestyle.
You’ll reduce your debt before it becomes an albatross
around your neck that drowns you. No amount of income
will be sufficient if your spending is not brought under
control. The only way to get ahead financially is to deny
yourself some of the things you want and save for the
future. If you don’t have the discipline to do that, you’ll
always be in debt. Now, when the government gets into
debt, they simply tax you. But when you get into debt—
you’re on your own. That’s not how God wants you to
live. True contentment doesn’t come from getting all you
want, but by discovering the blessings you have been
given and learning to enjoy them. This should be your
goal: ‘Owe no one anything—except for your obligation to
love one another.’
SoulFood: Ezek 24:1-27:24 , Matt 18:1-9 , Ps 143 , Prov
15:8-10


Heart :)
#10
Heart :)


Today, Show That You Care



'This is My commandment, that you love one another as I
have loved you.' John 15:12 NKJV
Take a deep breath, and hold it for a moment. Now exhale
it. Where did it go? The air that you just exhaled will circle
the globe in the next twelve months, during which time
each of the molecules you exhaled will be breathed in by
someone else only to be exhaled again. In this way we are
all linked to each other, we are all connected by our
breath to each other and to the One who first breathed life
into us.
Just as we all share our chemistry with other members of
the human family, so we are all interdependent. We’re
affected positively or negatively by the actions of each
other. During the self–centred days of what used to be
called the ‘Me Generation’, it was common to hear people
say, ‘As long as I’m not hurting anyone, it’s nobody’s
business what I do.’ Unfortunately, everything we do
affects other people, and there’s no such thing as a
completely independent act.
The poet John Donne wrote, ‘No man is an island, entire
of itself, every man is a piece of a continent, a piece of the
main.’ With that in mind, read these two Scriptures:
(1) ‘A new commandment I give you, that you love one
another; as I have loved you.’ (John 15:12 NKJV)
(2) ‘Owe nothing to anyone—except for your obligation to
love one another…’ (Romans 13:8
This is The Word For Today


Heart :)