Daily Word

Acts 12

Read Acts 12 – part one.   Let me explain the cast of characters before we dive into the awesome miracles. 

Herod was the grandson of Herod the great, who ordered the Jewish babies execution when Jesus was born.  He was also the nephew of Herod Antipas, who ruled over Jesus’s trial… all of them were evil.

James is the brother of John,  the sons of Zebedee, the sons of thunder – not the author of the book of James (that James was Jesus’s half brother).  

Okay, ready?  James is the first martyred apostle.  This would have shaken the apostles from the illusion that they had divine protection… if James could be killed, they all could.

Peter was also imprisoned and Herod had every intent on killing him too because it pleased the Jews. It was a good political gesture. Isn’t that sickening? 

Meanwhile,  the rest of the church is fevrantly praying for Peter at Mary’s house (she is Marks mother – there are 6 Mary’s in the Bible – that’s a whole rewarding study of its own). Okay, exhale,  Beloved. This is the end of part one. Good job! 

Acts 12 – part two. Picture Peter in prison.   He’s not a violent man. Yet he is chained between two soldiers, behind a guarded door within a locked and secure prison. It was a humanly hopeless situation, but God didn’t think so.

The Lord heard the prayers and sent rescue.   He loosened the chains, unlocked the doors, kept the guards asleep, and Peter simply walked out with angelic protection!  

Peter didn’t even know it was real; he thought it was a vision,  :6-11.  He goes to Mary’s, where the church is praying for his safety,  and…. Were you giggling just a little at the details? It was like a comedy skit! 

Beloved,  have you ever had your prayers answered and it took you a while to realize it?   I look back in my journals every now and then and God amazes me… he’s broken more than a few chains in my life too.

Evil Herod investigated the breach and it cost the sentries their lives, but his wickedness catches up with him and he is struck down be an angel, eaten by worms, and breathed his last.

Things end on a high note for the church,  :24-25.  Beloved,  when life gets crazy, God is still working all things out for your good and His glory. Praise God! 

Daily Word

Luke 4

Read Acts 4 – The church is big, bold and beautiful.

The discussion is still taking place in the Temple with Peter, John and the religious leaders.  The leaders were perplexed because Peter and John were ordinary men with no special training in the Scriptures – they recognized them as men who walked with Jesus – yet because the lame man was standing right there they couldn’t come up with anything to refute them(:13-14). 

Beloved, do you feel ordinary?  Jesus is waiting with patience and mercy for your heart.  He will take your surrendered heart from ordinary to extraordinary as you lay your hurts, habits and idols at His feet.  You don’t need the things that drag you down anymore. 

The council tells Peter and John to stop talking about Jesus.  Beloved, once a person knows Jesus, it is impossible not to talk about Him!  And that is what Peter and John tell them(:20).  They were released and returned to the believers where they were met with joy and songs of praise to God. 

In verses :32-37 we see a commune-like unity in this first church.  They were of one mind, and heart, and they shared everything.  This is the infancy of Christianity, although it didn’t even have a name then, and it is beautiful.  Beloved, won’t you thank God today for what He put together by these courageous believers so that you can know Him?🙌🙏🙌💝🙌🙏🙌

Daily Word

Acts 3

Read Acts 3 – The power of a surrendered life is on display in Peter and John.  It is not their power, wisdom, eloquence or authority that heals the lame man, but their full surrender to Christ’s care and control… and, Beloved!  May that be your prayer too:

“Jesus, use me to reveal yourself to those around me.  May my life be a testimony to your goodness, power and love. Amen” 

The lame man wanted money.  He limited his desire to what he thought he deserved.  He didn’t dream big enough to want to be healed. 

Beloved, do you limit your dreams?  God’s Word says, “No eye has seen, nor ear has heard, nor the heart of man imagined, what God has prepared for those who love him.” 1 Corinthians 2:9. 

Peter and John relied on Jesus’s power to heal the lame man, that Jesus would be glorified – for the lame man – and for many who witnessed the miracle.  The lame man responded with glee, praising God, and went into the temple with Peter and John.  The people were astounded, and Peter saw the opportunity to speak about Jesus!  Beloved, be sensitive to opportunities to share about Jesus.  People are perishing.  Your life is a testimony to the goodness and glory of God.  Dream big!


John 21

Read John 21 – The book of John closes with, “Jesus also did many other things.  If they were all written down, I suppose the whole world could not contain the books that would be written.”  21:25.  John let us know Jesus through his account, so that you, Beloved, could know Jesus on a personal level too.  Look at how REAL Jesus was… 7 of the disciples had been out fishing and he met them on the water.  They were getting skunked and he simply told them to cast their nets on the right-hand side of the boat.  Would you have questioned?  I might have.  What difference could a few feet have made?  It made all the difference!  Suddenly the nets held more fish than they could haul in.  They got to shore and Jesus had breakfast waiting for them.  Beloved, may you be fine tuned to hear whether Jesus wants you to move an inch, a mile, or to the other side of the earth!  May you draw nearer to the Lord of All, who wants to dine with you…. “Behold, I stand at the door and knock.  If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with me.” Revelation 3:20 (also written by John). 🐟🥖☝🍽☝🥖🐟

Daily Word

John 20

Read John 20 – Early on Sunday morning… Of all the inconceivable hallelujahs, this takes the cake!  Mary Magdalene found the stone had been rolled away fromJesus’s tomb, and RAN to tell Peter and John.  They go to check things out.  It is all still a mystery, but when John saw the wrappings and the neatly folded head covering, he believed.

  Beloved, that is faith.  Jesus told them he would rise from the dead, but to see the tomb empty and trust that is what it meant is faith. 

Meanwhile, Mary is crying.  She sees two angels, one at the head and the other at the foot of where Jesus had been lying.(20:12)*  Then Jesus appears and asks her why she was crying, but she doesn’t recognize him and thinks he is the gardener.  Perhaps she is so grieved, and this is utterly beyond her comprehension, or perhaps he looks different, yet when he speaks her name, she KNOWS! 

That night, Jesus suddenly appeared to the disciples, except Thomas who came in later.  They tried to tell him, but he needed to see for himself.  Eight days later, Jesus joins them again(despite the locked doors), and invites Thomas to touch his wounds.  Beloved, notice Jesus does not shame Thomas for this, and trust he will also meet you right where your heart is and equip you to believe too. 

Our chapter closes with a promise :30.  May your day be filled with thoughts of it and may you make this a Hallelujah day!🙌

*John 20:12 – a bonus round!  “She saw two white-robed angels, one sitting at the head and the other at the foot of the place where the body of Jesus had been lying.” (:12)  My bible study teacher just drew something spectacular out of this verse and I have to share it! 

First, notice that Mary was not overwhelmed by the presence of these angels.  Most biblical angelic encounters are met with fear, but Mary’s heart was only set on Jesus. 

Next, see the parallels between this and the cherubim placed at each end of the mercy seat, Exodus 25.  Now the cherubim covered the mercy seat which was on top of the Arc of the Covenant.  The Arc of the Covenant held the tablets of Law which Moses was given on Mount Sinai (the law we all fall short of), a jar of manna divinely preserved (God’s provision for Israel’s complaint), and the staff of Aaron (God’s sign against rebellion). These items all represent our human inability to honor the Lord who is holy, and His provisions (Hebrews 9:4). Jesus is our perfect atonement, and the actual angels stood over him like the cherubim stood over the Arc of the Covenant.  Wow, right? 😇

Daily Word

John 19

Read John 19 – You are going to want to look away, but don’t.  You are going to want to read this lightly the way one does when the characters seem foreign, read it twice, maybe three times.  Read it until you are able to see your own need for a Savior.  Read it until you see how far you are from worthy to be in the presence of our Holy God. 

Are you a “good person”?  Read it again.  Pilate tried to be a “good person”.  He knew Jesus was innocent so he thought maybe a scourging would satisfy the angry, blood thirsty crowd…. It was his weak and deranged compromise. Our Savior, Jesus Christ, surrendered his life to the cruelest abuses man can conceive.  Why were they so cruel – a crown of thorns, slapping Jesus, who swung the whip that tore his flesh?  When one person is cruel, it is very bad, yet when a frenzy of cruelty erupts, it is inhumane.

Jesus was innocent.  He bore my sins on that cross.  He bore your sins on that cross.  Feel the magnitude of it.  “It is finished.”  :30  Jesus paid our atoning sacrifice.  It was more than we can afford – our sin deems us unworthy.  It was more than we deserve.  “Yet while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”  Romans 5:8

Daily Word

John 17

Read John 17 – My heart is overflowing with gratitude!  Sweet Jesus!  Mighty Jesus!  John 17 is his prayer to our Holy Father. 

Think about it, without Jesus, humans would try really hard.  They would define god for themselves and decide what was “good” and “bad”.  In Proverbs 16:25 we are told, “There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death.”  Yet, praise God for Jesus!  He fulfilled his earthly mission and plainly says: “And this is the way to have eternal life – to know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, the one you sent to earth.” 

Verse :6 rang especially sweet in my ears, “I have revealed you to the ones you gave me from this world.  They were always yours. You gave them to me, and they have kept your word.” 

THEY WERE ALWAYS YOURS…. Beloved, you were always Gods.  You just had to realize it!  This wonderful truth comes with the joyful responsibility to reflect Jesus every day.  Jesus’s prayer for you is that you experience such perfect unity that the world will know that God sent Jesus and that He loves you as much as He loves Jesus(:23).  Now, go, shine brightly, Beloved.💖💝💖😍💖💝💖

Daily Word, Uncategorized

John 16

Read John 16 – It’s going to get bad with good reason; keep the faith. 

Jesus front-loads his disciples, “I have told you these things so that you won’t abandon your faith.” 16:1.  You will get kicked out of church.  You may be killed. I am leaving you.  The Holy Spirit is coming… Those are some BIG details! 

Jesus gives a bottom line on sin too in vs :9.  Sin is not believing in Jesus.  Think about it, every lie, every indulgence (fornication, food, drugs, alcohol, shopping, pride or self-depreciation, ect.), every pursuit of malice, and any other sin boils down to not believing in Jesus, and putting the things of this world ahead of worshipping Him.  Jesus says, “There is so much more I want to tell you, but you can’t bear it now.” :12…. Oh my! 

Beloved, we also know as much as we can handle.  Jesus did die and was resurrected.  Jesus is coming back in judgement and only those clothed in Him will enter into the kingdom of heaven.  Keep the faith; keep your peace.  Jesus says:  “I have told you all of this so that you may have peace in me.  Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows.  But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” :33✌🌎☝❤☝🌏✌

Daily Word

John 15

Read John 15 – My Grandpa was a master pruner.  When he was finished, I would actually feel sorry for the poor trees.  They looked so naked with exposed stumps for limbs.  Yet come spring, vibrant fruit, apricots, peaches, plums, would appear. 

When the Lord prunes ones life, it can feel like amputation; it can hurt.  Yet there is redemptive purpose to every cut the Lord allows.  Jesus tells us to remain in him and we will bear much fruit(:5).  Jesus tells us these things so we will be filled with HIS joy, JOY that overflows(:11)! 

Beloved, will you trust Jesus when the painful trials come?  Will you lean into his love and look for this overflowing joy?  The world will come against you because it hated Jesus first(:18).  Don’t be surprised, hold fast to Jesus and lead your life with love.💞🌳🍇📖🍉🌳💕

Daily Word

Read John 14

Read John 14 – The way. The truth.  The life.  – Those are such pure and powerful words, and John 14 has an abundance of them.

Jesus gives such a peaceful picture of eternity in these Scriptures.  You may recognize them from memorial services, but why wait for a moment of grief to set your mind on heaven(14:1-4)? 

And Jesus also gives hope for today – we will do works like Jesus, and He will give us what we ask for in his name(:12-14).  In verse :16 the apostles (and eventually us) learn about the Holy Spirit,  the Advocate who will help us and be with us forever.

Later, a great question is asked: why doesn’t everyone know Jesus?   It is a tragedy that some people chose disobedience over love (:22-24). 

Beloved, imagine how mind blowing it must have been to keep up with all Jesus was explaining!  That’s one reason the Holy Spirit is so essential to believers (:26).  Let’s hold on to verse 14:27, “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you.   I do not give as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled,  and do not be afraid.”🕊