Tag Archive | Devotional

Roll With The Punches

One of my favorite biblical figures is the Apostle Paul. His story fascinates me. It’s filled with so many twists and turns. It’s unpredictable. What you expect to happen to him NEVER happens! It makes me think of how we sometimes view our own lives. We have timelines filled with joyful milestones and ends happily ever after. We forget the Author of our stories pens no two stories the same but rather chooses characters with flaws and traits that we deem unattractive or undesirable and uses them to accomplish His will. It doesn’t look pretty at first glance. With deeper insight and loss of selfish desires a greater story reveals itself.

I can relate to the apostle Paul. His story in the book of Acts tells of an educated, zealous, and passionate young man. His passion for persecuting Christians was so extreme he earned a reputation that struck fear in the hearts of followers of the Way. How deep must a man’s hatred run for a cause that he would hold the coats of those that stoned an innocent man to death while looking on with pleasure and consent? Reading Paul’s story I often wonder about what he must have been thinking on his way to Damascus before encountering Christ. Was he thinking about his career path? Perhaps wondering what was the magic number of Christians he needed to tyrannize in order to receive a promotion.  Maybe he was daydreaming about how quickly he would advance in life like many of us do today and calculating how to achieve his next set of goals. Nevertheless, his plans were aborted and replaced with more rewarding ones after a transforming ordeal.

The man who turned the world upside down in his pursuit of annihilating the spread of the Gospel would turn the world upside down again in the quest for sharing it to the ends of the earth. His transformation after encountering Jesus was so drastic and unique no one knew what to make of him. He preached the Gospel with intensity and devotion. Yes, one of the greatest persecutors of the early church was now its biggest promoter. Was this the life Paul dreamed for himself? A life full of rejection, stoning, beatings, imprisonment, and suffering. One without comfort, riches, and ends in a violent death.

Sometimes we can look at our lives and become discouraged because they don’t resemble our dreams. I admire the apostle Paul because he rolled with the punches. Jesus said this about Paul, “…he is a chosen vessel of Mine to bear My name before Gentiles, kings, and the children of Israel. “ The zeal and commitment Paul exhibited as an apostle was genuine because he was living the dream.  He was fulfilling his purpose in life. His testimony was shared numerous times and carried him places he may have never travelled to before his conversion. His experiences shaped him into a mighty missionary. Debates only fueled his drive for sharing truth and dispelling myths. He lived a life of uncertainty but was secure in his faith and belief in the resurrected Savior. He surrendered himself completely to God to be used for His glory.

Paul’s story may sound daunting to you but He says this about the life he lived, “And see, now I go bound in the spirit to Jerusalem, not knowing the things that will happen to me there, except that the Holy Spirit testifies in every city, saying that chains and tribulations await me. But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God.” Paul’s satisfaction was found in obedience to the will of God. Life is filled with uncertainty. Roll with the punches. Be passionate. Give it your all. Live! Fulfill your life’s purpose. It’s one of life’s greatest rewards.

-Kilra Williams

 

Acts 20:22-24 “22 And see, now I go bound in the spirit to Jerusalem, not knowing the things that will happen to me there, 23 except that the Holy Spirit testifies in every city, saying that chains and tribulations await me. 24 But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself,[b] so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God. (NKJV)

Acts 9:15-16 “15 But the Lord said to him, “Go, for he is a chosen vessel of Mine to bear My name before Gentiles, kings, and the children of Israel. 16 For I will show him how many things he must suffer for My name’s sake.” (NKJV)

Acts 14:22 “…We must through many tribulations enter the kingdom of God.” (NKJV)

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Visualize Your Outcomes

Today I would like to share with you an excerpt from my first book A Praying Heart entitled: Visualize Your Outcomes. I hope it encourage and empowers you to not only pray to fully see your desired results of your prayers. Be blessed.

Visualize Your Outcomes

Your prayers are affected by what is going on in your mind at that time. When you mentally picture your outcomes, you increase the power of your prayers. Visualization allows your subconscious to generate creativity, trains your brain to recognize the resources you will need, and increases your internal motivation. Close your eyes, and place yourself in to a comfortable position, and visualization will begin to happen quickly.
To help prepare yourself for what comes next, you can mentally rehearse your prayer answers by lining up your prayer request as different scenes in a movie. It is up to you how much detail you add. To have a deeper impact on your outcomes, you should allow yourself to physically experience them in advance.

Prayer

Lord, I ask for you to help me to no longer worry about what will happen later today or tomorrow. Teach me to understand that you had already created the answers that I needed long before I came to you with the request. Allow my path to no longer be dark; put me at the end of the tunnel, where I am reaching and grabbing hold to my dreams while walking into my destiny. Thank You, Lord, because I have experienced your love, and now I feel free. In Jesus’ name, amen.

Scripture Reading:

 “We always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you. Because we have heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of the love you have for all God’s people The faith and love that spring from the hope stored up for you in heaven and about which you have already heard in the true message of the gospel.” Colossians 1:3

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~LaToya Murchison