Daniel 1:8 – Favor of God

Daily Devotional Bible Verse

But Daniel resolved that he would not defile himself with the king’s food, or with the wine that he drank. Therefore he asked the chief of the eunuchs to allow him not to defile himself.
(Daniel 1:8 ESV)

There are two things we can learn from Daniel’s response to the king’s decree that they eat a certain food and drink wine (Daniel 1:5). First, we learn that Daniel remained faithful to God when it seemed as though God was not faithful to him. Daniel  just had his home destroyed by the king of Babylon and was subsequently taken into captivity (Daniel 1:1-4). To many of us it may seem as though God had not taken care of Daniel and his fellow Israelites. Even though it appeared that way from a human perspective, Daniel stayed faithful to God and his commandments; even when it came to food. [Read more…]

Matthew 25:14-21 – Parable of the Talents

Daily Devotional Bibles Verses

“For it will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted to them his property. To one he gave five talents, to another two, to another one, to each according to his ability. Then he went away. He who had received the five talents went at once and traded with them, and he made five talents more. So also he who had the two talents made two talents more. But he who had received the one talent went and dug in the ground and hid his master’s money. Now after a long time the master of those servants came and settled accounts with them. And he who had received the five talents came forward, bringing five talents more, saying, ‘Master, you delivered to me five talents; here I have made five talents more.’ His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master.’ (Matthew 25:14-21, ESV)

In this parable Jesus describes how a wealthy master entrusted to three of His servants a significant amount of his property. A talent was worth approximately twenty years wages for a common laborer (so these were serious amounts of money). Although each servant was given a different amount, they were given the same task: invest the treasure they’d been entrusted.

We can often become [Read more…]

John 4:37-38 – The Long Haul

Daily Devotions Bible Verses

For here the saying holds true, ‘One sows and another reaps.’ I sent you to reap that for which you did not labor. Others have labored, and you have entered into their labor.”
(John 4:37-38 ESV)

It’s very easy to get caught up in the “go big, go fast, or go home” mentality. This can also creep into the church and our Christian walk. Almost every story you hear of church planting success is of how a gifted leader started with almost nothing and then the congregation just blew up overnight. Seldom do we hear a leader share about long years of faithful labor with little initial fruit, but how God was still at work; regardless of the numbers.

In John 4, Jesus wants the disciples to know that the spiritual harvest they were experiencing was the result of a long-term process and the labor of others. Others had gone before them, tilling the ground, planting the seed and watering the soil; and now they were witnessing the harvest. We can get as caught up in the “reaping” as the disciples probably were. This can happen in our ministry circles, or even with friends that we hope will come to see the saving grace of Jesus. We often focus on the harvest as opposed to the tilling, sowing, watering, and cultivating that must occur before we reap. In other words, we want to see the end result and not just experience the work that comes before. This can also cause us to be discouraged when we don’t see quick results in our ministry. However, we can be encouraged by Jesus’ words and realize that the work we are doing now will bring a harvest even; if we aren’t there to be a part of it.

Be faithful with the small but significant doors God has opened in people’s lives around you, and have a long-haul view when investing in those lives. Recognize and celebrate God’s work in the lives of others, even when it isn’t harvest time.