GETTING THE MOST FROM GOD'S WORD:

"Do NOT labor for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to everlasting LIFE..." - The Gospel of John 6:27 (NKJV)
A systematic and daily reading of the Word of God is important in maintaining a strong Christian life. Establish a daily quiet time with God and His Word. Pray that the Holy Spirit will help you understand what you read. By following our daily Bible reading schedule through this blog, you will be able to read the Bible through in a year. Please note that you may utilize the ‘BIBLE READER’ app that is installed at the bottom of this webpage to assist you in reading the specified scripture portion for today.

To get the MOST from God's Word, please do the following intentionally:
1. REQUEST God to connect with you as you read the word of God with FOCUS and OPENNESS to see what God wants to speak with you.
2. READ the selected sections of Scripture slowly as you mark the words and phrases that intrigue you, even reading them the second time to get a better understanding.
3. REFLECT on what God is communicating to you; stopping long enough to let the seed of God's Word take root in your heart.
4. RESPOND to the passage speaking directly to God about what is in your heart, and then look out for ways to live out what you find - individually, and to others within your church and elsewhere.

As you read and meditate, ask yourself the following three questions:
a) What is God speaking to me through this passage?
b) Is there a command, a promise or a warning for me?
c) Is there an example for me to follow?

Please POST your comments below if there is a thought or message that the Lord has spoken to you through the passage that you are reading and meditating today. Please make sure that your post is aligned to the scripture passage mentioned at the header. All comments should pertain to the relevant scripture portions only, and should be aimed to glorify God (the true author of 'The Bible') & edify everyone who visits this blog site daily - both young and old. May God bless you abundantly for encouraging others through your comments!

Let's PRAY...
LORD, give me the desire to take a little time out of my busy schedule today as I read and meditate on Your Word. Give me this day MY DAILY BREAD. Speak to me clearly & lead me today as my Good Shepherd. Help me to be a blessing to others who interact with me as I attempt to be a living witness of Your Word today. In Your Name I pray, AMEN.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

The IMPORTANCE of SELF-DISCIPLINE

The IMPORTANCE of SELF-DISCIPLINE

June 3 Bible Reading: Job Chapters 31-33

"I have made a covenant with my eyes; why then should I look upon a young woman? Does He (God) not see my ways, and count all my steps? (Job 31:1, 4)

After defending his position before his friend, Job speaks about the self-discipline that he had always maintained so far. Job did not speak anything by way of boasting, but in answer to the charge of hypocrisy. Job understood that the spiritual nature of God's commandments reaches to the thoughts and intents of his heart so Job made certain decisions in his life that evolved out of self-discipline.

In his final defense, Job recounted his life of strict moral integrity (Job 31:1–4). He had been scrupulously honest in all his business dealings (vv. 5–8), had never committed the sin of adultery (vv. 9–12), had treated his servants gently and with respect (vv. 13–15), had met the needs of the poor and needy (vv. 16–23), had resisted the attractions of material wealth (vv. 24–25), had not fallen into idolatry (vv. 26–28), had not engaged in any form of personal revenge (vv. 29–30), was careful to entertain strangers (vv. 31–32), did not conceal his sins from God (vv. 33–34), and did not abuse his stewardship of fields and properties (vv. 35–40).

Job’s only regret was that God seemed not to have noticed his life of integrity and self-discipline (vv. 35–37). However, we know that God had noticed that Job "was blameless and upright, and one who feared God and shunned evil" (Job 1:1), and the end of the story of Job was much better than the beginning.
As a child of God, it is very important for us to maintain self-discipline in our lives. It is very easy to get tempted by Satan and the pleasures that the world has to offer us. However, the path of sin is very slippery (Psalms 73:18) and we have to set some guards in our lives early on so that we are not drawn away by our desires and enticed to sin (James 1:13-15).

Early on in his ministry in 1948, the famous evangelist Billy Graham and his core leadership team took certain decisions for maintaining self-discipline in four areas listed below:
  1. Financial Accountability: Billy’s team committed themselves to integrity and openness in all their financial dealings.
  2. Sexual Indiscretions: Due to the possibility as well as the appearance of sexual indiscretions, Billy and his team committed together to guard themselves against sexual sin. Billy committed to never be alone with a woman other than his wife, and made other commitments safe-guarding this purity.
  3. Model of evangelists working in concert with the local churches: Billy’s team committed to work with the local churches wherever possible in the proclamation of the Gospel.
  4. Finally, Billy’s team noted that many evangelists inflate their numbers to validate their ministry. They committed to doing their best in accurately reporting crowd size and decisions. To do otherwise was rooted in pride and had no place in the proclamation of the Gospel.
Due to their adherence to these four major areas of self-discipline, Billy Graham has been used by God to draw millions into God’s kingdom. Let us also realize the importance of self discipline and make the following decision with Apostle Paul: "But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified." (1 Cor. 9:27)

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