Be A True Patriot

Devotion for Saturday January 20, 2018

Topic: Be A True Patriot

Text: Nehemiah 1:1 – 4

Nehemiah was a cup bearer of a Persian king. He tastes whatever is served the king as drink. Thus he lived at ease, and in honour, but didn’t forget that he was an Israelite, and that his brethren were in distress. He was ready to do them all the good he could through the position he was occupying; and to know how best to show them kindness, he makes inquiries about them. Nehemiah was a man of true piety though, he was in high position in civil office but his piety led him to take a deep interest in the welfare of his people and course of God in the home of his ancestors and brethren. This distinguished him as a great patriot.

Today we have men and women who are in high positions but cannot do anything good for their people. They are so self-centered that they don’t even care what happens in their villages/towns. Some Christians don’t pay contributions for development of their communities. Some don’t pay their taxes and rates to government. Yet they criticize the government. These acts are not Christ-like. Jesus gave us example in Matthew 17:25 – 27.

As Christians we should show the light first among our people and to others. We should have concern about the welfare of our communities and the nation at large. Nehemiah heard about the condition of Jerusalem and went into prayers (Nehemiah 1:4). How much do we pray for our nation and communities? We desired change in our nation and communities but wait for someone else to bring it. Why not become the change by being a true patriot? Sing SS&S 798; Abu 29

Food for Thought: What can you do to improve the welfare of your community?

Memory verse: Nehemiah 1:4

Prayer: Grant me the burden to always pray and work for the good of my community and my country at large in Jesus name. Amen.

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Wisdom For Godly Living

Devotion for Friday January 19, 2018

Topic: Wisdom For Godly Living

Topic: Psalm 39:1 – 4

The best virtue we can develop is the virtue of taming our mouths or observing the oath of silence. Words we speak are very sensitive and can be used against us. James emphasized on the use of mouth when he said, “But no man can tame the tongue. It is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison” – James 3:8. In our bible reading, David meditates on human frailty and prays for wisdom to live Godly life. He asserts that he must be cautious because of his enemies; he must be patient because of his afflictions; he must be watchful over his tongue, lest he offends God, or give his enemies any reason to speak evil of him. These resolutions David made is what every Christian who wants to live a Godly life should undertake. We run into problem most times when we fail to tame our tongue especially when we are in the public or surrounded by enemies. Just like James noted, the tongue is an unruly evil and full of deadly poison. The ability to tame our tongue will definitely help us to avoid troubles and problems of life. David had shown his desire to live a godly life in this prayer he said here. How do you desire to live your life especially in our world of today where love is confessed but scare? You should adopt the example David gave here so that you will live with wisdom; not falling into problems with people around you. Sing A&M 356; Abu 186

Action: Write and paste in a conspicuous position how best you will want to live a godly life this year.

Memory verse: James 3:2

Prayer: O Lord, my God help me to tame my tongue and to apply wisdom in the life I live in Jesus name. Amen

Be Courageous In A Time Like This

Devotion for Thursday January 18, 2018

Topic: Be Courageous In A Time Like This           

Text: Joshua 1:1 – 7                                        

Living a righteous life in a society that has so many challenges demand courage and implicit trust in God. Our society today is faced with challenges of poor economy, the issue of herdsmen killing people, corruption, and armed robbery, Boko Haram, Badoo, Insurgency and many others. To live amidst these challenges need courage and grace of God.

Joshua had assumed the leadership of Israel and now has the mandate to lead them into the Promised Land (Joshua 1:1, 2). God gave him all the assurances he needed and some strategies to lead well and prosper.

Here are some of them. He said that to succeed Joshua must (1) be strong and courageous because the task ahead would not be easy, (2) obey God’s law, and (3) constantly read and study the Book of the Law – The Bible.

If we intend to be successful in our endeavours and live well despite the challenges confronting our nation, we should follow God’s instruction to Joshua. We need to be strong in faith and be courageous in following God. Do not despair. You can live well amidst these challenges if you trust God. He is the one that can make all things possible. As you live for Him, He will surely protect, provide and make you a success in your endeavours.

Sing Hymn: COURAGE, BROTHER! DO NOT STUMBLE (Tune Stuggart) Abu 215

1) Courage, brother! do not stumble    2) Though the road be rough and dreary,

Though thy path be dark as night;               And its end far out of sight;

There’s a star to guide the humble:            Foot it bravely; strong or weary,

“Trust in God, and do the right.”                 “Trust in God, and do the right.”

 

3) Perish policy and cunning,            4) Some will hate thee, some will love thee,

Perish all that fears the light!                Some will flatter, some will slight;

Whether losing, whether winning,       Cease from man, and look above thee:

“Trust in God, and do the right.”          “Trust in God, and do the right.”

 

5) Simple rule, and safest guiding,         6) Courage, brother! do not stumble,

Inward peace and inward might,                Though thy path be dark as night;

Star upon our path abiding,                         There’s a star to guide the humble:

“Trust in God, and do the right.”                 “Trust in God, and do the right.”

Food for Thought: Despairing about challenges doesn’t remove them. It takes courage to face them and to overcome.

Memory verse: Joshua 1:7

Prayer: Lord God, make me strong and grant me the courage to faithfully follow you courageously in a time like this in Jesus name. Amen.

Extravagant Grace


Devotion for Wednesday January 17, 2018

Topic: Extravagant Grace 

Text: John 8:1 – 11                                             

When Jesus called on someone without sin to throw the first stone on this woman caught in the very act, the leaders slipped away one by one, from oldest to youngest. As Life Application Commentary noted, “Evidently the older men were more aware of their sins than the younger. Age and experience often temper youthful self-righteousness.”

Every human being has a sinful nature and is desperately in need of forgiveness and transformation. If we are invited today to throw a stone on that woman, I know we wouldn’t have thrown the first stone because we cannot claim that we have not sinned. We would have also walked away.

Actually no one could claim he or she is sinless so as to throw a stone this woman. Jesus had exposed their hypocrisy and embarrassed them. They went back in shame to think of some other ways to trap Jesus. No one had accused the woman, and Jesus kindly said that He would not condemn her either. Thus she was released through extravagant grace God shows sinners.

Jesus secured her freedom from the Pharisees and to free her from her sins said, “Go and sin no more.” Jesus didn’t condemn her, but neither did he ignore or condone her behaviour. Jesus told the woman to leave her life of sin.

As we have been graciously brought to this new day, we should not abuse the grace of God. He expects to see righteousness in us. Don’t think you deserve to be alive; it is by God’s grace. Live in gratitude like this woman having received God’s grace. Sing A&M 352; SS&S 581; Abu 195

Food for Thought: How grateful are you to God for the grace He showers on you?

Memory verse: John 8:11

Prayer: Lord, I am alive by your grace. Help me to live my life in gratitude for this singular honour in Jesus name. Amen.

Ask Me And I Will Tell You

Devotion for Tuesday January 16, 2018

Topic: Ask Me And I Will Tell You

Text: Jeremiah 33:1 – 5

God is so loving and merciful. He knows how best we can live and serve Him better. He doesn’t want to wander aimlessly in the dark. He is the light and wants us to be and walk in the light too. Whatever will bring doubt in us and make us afraid, He will want to eliminate such. Hence, His words form the topic for the day. Life is full of uncertainties. Even this day, we are not sure of what will happen in the next hour. Because of such uncertainties, God calls on us in our bible reading for the day to ask and He will tell us what lies ahead, how best to handle issues, the ways to attain success and the best way to serve Him and humanity. Jesus Christ also gave same assurance in Matthew 7:7. Beloved, do you know what lies ahead of you this year? What do you think will bring success and progress for you? How best do you think you can serve God? How do you want to handle that troublesome neighbour? If really you don’t have answers to these and many more questions agitating your mind, then you should ask God to tell you. Nothing takes God unawares. He knows your tomorrow and what it holds for you. He is in the right position to advice you. Remember that he who asks for direction never misses his way. Ask God for direction on ways to go, how to do things today and all the days of your life, and you will always meet with progress and success. Sing SS&S 319; Abu 249

Food for Thought: Someone who asks questions never misses his way

Memory verse: Jeremiah 33:3

Prayer: Grant, O God that I will always seek your counsel whenever I am confused or in doubt in Jesus name. Amen.

Good Influence Of Godly Citizens

Devotion for Monday January 15, 2018

Topic: Good influence Of Godly Citizens

Text: Proverbs 11:11 (The Living Bible)

This passage of the scripture has a very important message for today’s Christians in our country. Many Christians of our time are not what they actually confess to be. I have continued to wonder whether we have the understanding of what our social responsibilities are. Our text speaks about the goodly influence expected of us as citizens of this country. The Living Bible translates this verse thus: “The good influence of godly citizens causes a city to prosper but the moral decay of the wicked drives it downhill.” The good influence of godly citizen comes in form of praying for the city, living by example and speaking against evil. Before 1980s, when neighbour sees your child misbehave in the public, he will punish the child and immediately and comes back to report to you. You will even commend him for such kindness toward your family. However, it is no longer obtainable in our society. When you try such, the kind of abuse and condemnation you will receive will drive cold into your marrow. Today, our society has become worse because there is no influence of the godly citizens. There are so many ills ravaging the society and check the names of people involved, you will see Christians among them. Who are the people that cheat; throw their bins into gutters, hide people’s files in offices, give and take bribes and many other evils of our time? Where is your influence as a Christian? What kind of words comes out of your mouth about this country? Do you spread hates and bitterness instead of love, peace and unity? Sing A&M 349; Abu 170

Food for Thought: What influence has your Christianity on your neighbours and neighbourhood?

Memory verse: Proverbs 11:11

Prayer: God make my Christianity influential on my neighbourhood in Jesus name. Amen.

Don’t Shut Your Hands

Devotion for Sunday January 14, 2018

Topic: Don’t Shut Your Hands

Text: Deuteronomy 15:7 – 8

This passage is similar to Leviticus 25:35 – 37. Due to the foregoing laws in the previous verses, Moses admonished the Israelites not to shut their hands against the poor. He exhorts them not to be mean and selfish but to develop a liberal spirit of charity and kindness which will secure for them the divine blessings (Romans 12:8 & 2 Corinthians 9:7). Also in Leviticus 25:35 – 37, Moses charged them to relieve the poor; by not taking interest or increase, for what was needful for the poor man’s support (Leviticus 25:36–37). This is what Christianity demands from us. The Psalmist added his voice on this matter and stated that there are promises attached to the command of taking care of the poor in Psalm 41:1 and 112: 9. Just as stated earlier, if we desire to secure divine blessings from God, we should be ready and ever willing to open our hands to the poor and the needy. If God has blessed you enough, you should make a regular provision for some of the poor people in your neighbourhood. Securing all the worldly goods for yourself and your children alone while people around you are living in abject poverty is the highest level of wickedness. Plan and put someone poor you know into your budget and God will bless you the more. Sing A&M 361; Abu 128

Food for Thought: Leviticus 25:35 – 37

Memory verse: 1 John 3:17

Prayer: O Lord, may I not shut my hands against the needy when I have what they need from me in Jesus name. Amen.