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Daily Devotional 09/14/2021

Life Principles to Live By

”Life’s Questions”

This is part of Charles Stanley’s devotional, “Life Principles to Live By” posted on the YouVersion Bible app, adapted from his book, 30 Life Principles. 

Questions to consider:

  1. How can you recognize God’s presence when life seems overwhelming?

  2. What can we learn from Scripture to help us keep focused on Him, not our circumstances?

Today’s reference: 2 Kings 6:17

Then Elisha prayed and said, “O LORD, please open his eyes that he may see.” So the LORD opened the eyes of the young man, and he saw, and behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.

1 Corinthians 2:9-16

[9] But, as it is written, 

    “What no eye has seen, nor ear heard,

        nor the heart of man imagined,

    what God has prepared for those who love him”—

    [10] these things God has revealed to us through the Spirit. For the Spirit searches everything, even the depths of God. [11] For who knows a person’s thoughts except the spirit of that person, which is in him? So also no one comprehends the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. [12] Now we have received not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might understand the things freely given us by God. [13] And we impart this in words not taught by human wisdom but taught by the Spirit, interpreting spiritual truths to those who are spiritual.

[14] The natural person does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are folly to him, and he is not able to understand them because they are spiritually discerned. [15] The spiritual person judges all things, but is himself to be judged by no one. [16] “For who has understood the mind of the Lord so as to instruct him?” But we have the mind of Christ.

Comments by Charles Stanley:

Life Principle 9 (continued): Trusting God means looking beyond what we can see to what God sees.

You don’t know what tomorrow may bring. This truth may cause you some anxiety, but when your faith is in God, it should bring you hope. God sees tomorrow—all of your tomorrows—and He is able to prepare you for whatever is to come. What is it about the future that causes you to be afraid? Is it a conflict that you dread? Are you doubtful about ever receiving your heart’s desire? Are you caught in a bad situation that you fear will never change?

Your apprehension may come from viewing your circumstances through your own limited perspective. Instead, you should be confident that God is working on your behalf in ways that you cannot see. Life Principle 9 teaches: Trusting God means looking beyond what we can see to what God sees. The circumstances and obstacles that you observe today may be truly overwhelming, but God’s resources are even greater and more powerful than you can imagine. God knows what is ahead and He is ready to deal with it. Therefore, put your faith in Him and obey whatever He says.

To judge any situation by your limited perspective means that you aren’t getting the whole picture. Elisha understood this, which is why he was so eager to hear whatever God had to say to him. He learned to look beyond what he could see to the Lord’s reality, and God showed Elisha amazing things and did miracles through him.

Read 1 Corinthians 2:9–16. Why does Paul include eyes, ears, and hearts in verse 9? What does this suggest about God’s perspective and your perspective?

According to verse 10, what is the only way that we can know what God is doing in our lives?

How did Elisha know the Syrians’ plans and that the Lord’s army was protecting him? He listened to the Spirit of God. You may think it is difficult to pay attention to God when you face overwhelming troubles, especially those that seem impossible. Like Elisha’s servant, your mind searches for a way to deal with what you’re seeing. In despair you cry out, “What can I do?”

Call to Me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know. (Jer. 33:3)

The first thing that you must do is close your physical eyes, because they’re not helping. Stop measuring your problems against your own ability to handle them because the enemy will use your worldly senses to magnify what you’re going through. Then you must open your spiritual eyes—the ones that are fixed upon God. Worship Him. Read His Word. Pray. Remember how He has helped others in the past, and thank Him that the mighty wisdom and power that was available to them has been provided to you, as well. God is ready, willing, and able to rescue you from the jaws of defeat, and He will do whatever is necessary to lead you to triumph when you obey Him.

How will you live out Life Principle 9 this week? Discuss how you will focus your mind and heart on God’s truth rather than on what you can see. Then spend time in prayer, asking God to draw you into intimate communion with Himself and to transform your life, so that you can affect the world for the sake of His kingdom.

Quote:  "Jesus understands trauma. He willingly entered into trauma for us. He endured humiliation, betrayal, abandonment, nakedness, aloneness, darkness, the silence of God, helplessness, shame, grief, and the loss of all things, including his life. He did that for us.” - Diane Langberg

You can invite others to join and read the Bible Plan, “Life Principles To Live By” at https://bible.com/p/45266486/cfc98f9a7b942d983c764129de25e124

Disclaimer: The purpose of this devotional is to engage the reader with Scripture and promote the many devotionals published by the YouVersion Bible app. This devotional is not intended to promote any one person’s perspective other than the Supremacy of Christ in all things. 

Check out / Participate with / Pray for

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Possibilities Africa:  https://usa.possibilitiesafrica.org/

Love Counts Now:  https://lovecountsnow.org/

Todd Becker Foundation:  https://toddbecker.org/

Crossroads Center Rescue Mission:  https://www.crossroadsmission.com/

Collage Center:  https://collagecenter.com/

Finishing The Task:  http://www.FinishingtheTask.com/

Ted and Judy Olsen:  http://www.globalfellowship.org

Fred and Janet Young:  http://www.worldventure.org

A Data Evaluation Tool For The Great Commission:  https://stratus.earth/

Posted by Bob Bednar