Birth Of A Dream

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Scripture

1 Samuel 1:20 “So it came to pass in the process of time that Hannah conceived and bore a son, and called his name Samuel, saying, “Because I have asked for him from the Lord.” NKJV

Observation

In this verse, the Bible tells the story of Hannah’s dream. The dream to have a child was alive in her heart, but was barren in reality. However, during that time, even though she was mocked and scorned in her barren state, she did not abort her dream or become bitter in her heart. Instead, Hannah wisely and humbly took her complaint to the Lord. Because of her humility and trust in God, in the process of time, God birthed her dream into reality with the birth of her son whom she named Samuel.

Application

There are times in life when dreams may seem to be barren. Additionally, during the barren state, there may be times when others may mock and scorn the dreams that God has put in my heart. However, like Hannah, I must place my trust in God, humbly submit my complaints to Him in the privacy of my prayer time, never become bitter, and never ever abort the dreams that He has put in my heart. As I yield to the Lord’s will for my life, in the process of time, barrenness will yield to faithfulness as God births my dreams into reality.

Prayer

Heavenly Father, I praise You for You are El Elyon, God Most High, Creator and Possessor of Everything In Heaven and on Earth! Thank You for the dreams that You have placed in my heart to help leaders build organizations to Your glory and for the benefit of others. I put my trust in You and believe that in the process of time, my dreams to bless and equip leaders in Your kingdom will become reality in the marketplace. I love You Jesus! Amen!

Birth Of A Dream Copyright 2008, Gary J. Borgstede.  You have permission to reprint the personal devotion, Birth Of A Dream, in its entirety only, and forward to your colleagues and friends, provided the copyright notice remains part of the reprint and transmission.  All other rights reserved.

Ministry Heart And Mind

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Scripture

2 Timothy 4:5 “But you should keep a clear mind in every situation. Don’t be afraid of suffering for the Lord. Work at telling others the Good News, and fully carry out the ministry God has given you.” NLT

Observation

In this verse, the Apostle Paul is encouraging his son in the Lord, Timothy, to carry out the work of the ministry that God had given him. As an uncommon mentor, Paul knew that fulfilling the work of the ministry would include days of suffering for the Lord; therefore, he wanted to make sure that Timothy, his uncommon protégé, was appropriately prepared in his heart and properly focused in his mind for the challenges he would face in the ministry.

Application

To carry out the ministry that God has given me is not easy because it includes the baptism of suffering that all spiritual leaders must go through to become like Jesus and it requires me to keep a focused mind in every situation I encounter on the ministry journey. Loving God with my whole heart, mind, soul, and strength helps me embrace the fellowship of Christ’s suffering as a minister of the Gospel. Loving others as myself helps me keep a clear ministry mind in every situation. In doing this with the help and grace of the Lord, I plan to effectively carry out the ministry God has given me in telling others about the Good News of the Gospel.

Prayer

Heavenly Father, I praise You for You are gracious, merciful, compassionate, and faithful! You know every detail of my life and ministry to others. As You lead me and guide me on every step of the ministry journey, I place my complete trust in You to mold me, shape me, teach me, and keep me as an effective minister of Your grace, truth, and love! Help strengthen my faith in all sufferings and focus my mind in every situation. I love You Jesus! Amen!

Ministry Heart And Mind Copyright 2013, Gary J. Borgstede.  You have permission to reprint the personal devotion, Ministry Heart And Mind, in its entirety only, and forward to your colleagues and friends, provided the copyright notice remains part of the reprint and transmission.  All other rights reserved.

Small Beginnings

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Scripture

Matthew 13:32 “It is the smallest of all seeds [the mustard seed], but it becomes the largest of garden plants; it grows into a tree, and birds come and make nests in its branches.” NLT

Observation

In this verse, Jesus uses a parable about the mustard seed to illustrate the growth of a flourishing life in His Kingdom. Although the mustard seed starts out as the smallest of all seeds, when it is planted in good soil, it becomes the largest of all plants and further grows into a tree that provides a protective home for birds that come to it for safety and security. The mustard seed that seems so small and insignificant actually has the potential to become a strong, powerful, and life-giving tree in God’s kingdom when it is planted in good soil, stewarded well, and healthy.

Application

The work of my hands and the impact of my life can at times seem small and insignificant, like a tiny mustard seed, especially in the beginning stages of a new work, a changing season, a fresh dream in my life. However, like a tiny mustard seed, my life has the potential to grow, be fruitful, and make a significant impact in the kingdom of God when I am firmly planted in the good soil of the house of God, regardless of how small and insignificant my beginning may seem. Of the godly man, the Bible says in Psalms 1:3, “He shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that brings forth its fruit in its season, whose leaf also shall not wither; And whatever he does shall prosper.” The Bible further encourages me in Zechariah 4:10 stating, “Do not despise these small beginnings, for the Lord rejoices to see the work begin, to see the plumb line in Zerubbabel’s hand.” Through faithfulness to the work God has assigned me to do in His kingdom, along with steady plodding day after day in His good plan for my life, my day of small beginnings will grow into a life of significant impact and large endings.

Prayer

Heavenly Father, I praise You for You are Large and Magnificent in every way! Thank You for caring about the smallest details of my life including the number of hairs on my head and the number of days You have written for me in Your book. As I trust You with my life, give me the grace, strength, and wisdom to remain faithful to the work You have assigned me to do in Your kingdom so that my life will grow from small beginnings to large endings of multiplied fruitfulness and significant impact in You. I love You Jesus! Amen!

Small Beginnings Copyright 2013, Gary J. Borgstede.  You have permission to reprint the personal devotion, Small Beginnings, in its entirety only, and forward to your colleagues and friends, provided the copyright notice remains part of the reprint and transmission.  All other rights reserved.

Examined Life

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Scripture

Psalms 26:2 “Examine me, O Lord, and prove me; Try my mind and my heart.”

Observation

In this verse, David prostrates himself before the Lord and opens his heart and his mind to be examined by the Lord. David understands that his life is safe in the hands of Almighty God, the only True and Righteous One, who knows his every thought and the motives of his heart.

Application

Socrates has said that, “the unexamined life is not worth living.” Life becomes dark when I do not allow my life to be open and vulnerable to the Lord and others because our heart and our thoughts can easily deceive us. The only way that we can prevent ourselves from being led astray by deception is to allow God and others to examine us, speak truth to us in love, and expose our blind spots. The reason blind spots are called blind spots is because we cannot see them with our own eyes. The scariest thing about being deceived is that a deceived person does not know that they are deceived. Being open and vulnerable to God and others immediately solves the deception problem.

Prayer

Heavenly Father, I praise You for You are All Knowing, Righteous, and True! Thank you Lord for searching me, knowing me, and leading me in Your paths of righteousness. By Your grace Lord, lead me into all truth and teach me all things as I open my life to You and to others who will speak truth in love to me. I love You Jesus! Amen!

Examined Life Copyright 2013, Gary J. Borgstede.  You have permission to reprint the personal devotion, Examined Life, in its entirety only, and forward to your colleagues and friends, provided the copyright notice remains part of the reprint and transmission.  All other rights reserved.

Dare To Hope

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Scripture

Lamentations 3:21-24 “Yet I still dare to hope when I remember this: The faithful love of the Lord never ends! His mercies never cease. Great is His faithfulness; His mercies begin afresh each morning. I say to myself, ‘The Lord is my inheritance; therefore, I will hope in Him!’” New Living Translation

Observation

In these verses, Jeremiah, also known as the weeping prophet, refuses to succumb to utter gloom and despair over the sin and rebellion of the people of God in his day. Although the sin and rebellion committed by the people deserve God’s full judgment, Jeremiah reminds himself that the Lord’s unfailing love, His unending mercies, His faithfulness, and His tender mercies are new every morning. As a result, he throws himself on the rock of God’s love and faithfulness where he dares to find his hope in the Lord.

Application

Even though my sin and rebellion against God deserve His full judgment, like Jeremiah, I will remind myself of the Lord’s unfailing love, never ending mercy, faithfulness, and new mercies every day through the complete and total forgiveness of my sin by my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. No matter what, I throw myself on the rock of His love, faithfulness, and inheritance of my salvation in Him which is where my daring hope comes from.

Prayer

Heavenly Father, I praise You for You are Jehovah Tsidkenu, the Lord our Righteousness! Thank you Lord for Your faithfulness that reaches to the heavens and Your tender mercies that are new every morning. Despite my failures, sin, and rebellion against You, I dare to place my trust and hope in You, the Lord my Righteousness in Christ Jesus, because You are good, You are faithful, and Your word is true. I love You Jesus! Amen!

Dare To Hope Copyright 2012, Gary J. Borgstede.  You have permission to reprint the personal devotion, Dare To Hope, in its entirety only, and forward to your colleagues and friends, provided the copyright notice remains part of the reprint and transmission.  All other rights reserved.

Set Apart

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Scripture

Jeremiah 1:5 “I [the Lord] knew you [Jeremiah] before I formed you in your mother’s womb. Before you were born I set you apart and appointed you as my prophet to the nations.” New Living Translation

Observation

In this verse, the Lord tells Jeremiah that He knew Jeremiah before the Lord formed him in his mother’s womb. Furthermore, the Lord tells Jeremiah that before he was even born, the Lord set him apart and divinely appointed him as a prophet to the nations. This declaration from God is the calling that Jeremiah needed to hear from God, be encouraged to follow diligently after Him, and step forward into his divinely appointed destiny as a holy, set apart, unique, prophet of God to the nations.

Application

If the Lord knew Jeremiah before He formed him in his mother’s womb, I can rest assured that the Lord also knew me before He formed me in my mother’s womb. In fact, the Apostle Peter says in Acts 10:34, “God is no respecter of persons.” And if this truth is not astounding enough, I can also trust that the Lord has a holy, set apart, unique, divine calling and appointment for me as a child of God, just like He did for Jeremiah. In Luke 12:6-7, the Bible says, “Are not five sparrows sold for two copper coins? And not one of them is forgotten before God. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows.” Understanding that I am worth more than many sparrows to the Lord, that the Lord knew me before I was even born, and that He has set me apart with a God-ordained calling in Him, encourages me to: 1) carefully listen for His still small voice, 2) follow diligently after Him, and 3) courageously step forward in faith into my unique divinely appointed destiny in God.

Prayer

Heavenly Father, I praise You for You are El Elyon, God Most High, Creator and Possessor Of Heaven And Earth! Thank you Lord for knowing me before I was formed in my mother’s womb and creating me with a unique divinely appointed destiny in You. Help me Lord to carefully listen for Your still small voice calling me, leading me, and encouraging me to courageously step forward in faith into my unique divinely appointed destiny in You. I love You Jesus! Amen!

Set Apart Copyright 2012, Gary J. Borgstede.  You have permission to reprint the personal devotion, Set Apart, in its entirety only, and forward to your colleagues and friends, provided the copyright notice remains part of the reprint and transmission.  All other rights reserved.

Stillness In The Lord

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Scripture

Psalm 37:7 “Be still in the presence of the Lord, and wait patiently for Him to act.”

Observation

In this psalm, David encourages people of God to be still in the presence of the Lord and wait patiently for Him to act on their behalf. At this stage of his life, David has witnessed the faithfulness of God to deliver him from the hand of all his enemies, provide for him in the most troubling times, and uphold him even in his failures. Through it all, David grew strong in the Lord because he learned how to be still in the presence of the Lord.

Application

Like David, in my personal walk with God, I must learn how to be still in the presence of the Lord if I am going to grow strong in Him. Regardless of the troubles I encounter in life, the opposition I face along the way, or the personal failure I experience on the journey, I can have perfect peace if during those times I am still in the presence of the Lord and my mind stays on Him. I am even reminded that when the storm was raging around Jesus as He and His disciples were crossing the sea, Jesus stayed in perfect peace because His trust was completely in His heavenly Father and His word. In fact, the word of God declares in Psalms 89:9, “You rule the raging of the sea; when its waves rise, You still them.” When I am still in the presence of the Lord and place my complete trust in Him, He is well able and faithful to still any raging sea around me.

Prayer

Heavenly Father, I praise You for You are El Elyon, God Most High, Creator and Possessor of Heaven and Earth! Thank You Lord for teaching me how to be still in Your presence even during the most difficult, trying times in life. As I learn to place my trust in You and You alone, I praise You for calming the raging seas of life and being faithful to complete the good work that You began in me when I first placed my trust in You. I love You Jesus! Amen!

Stillness In The Lord Copyright 2012, Gary J. Borgstede.  You have permission to reprint the personal devotion, Stillness In The Lord, in its entirety only, and forward to your colleagues and friends, provided the copyright notice remains part of the reprint and transmission.  All other rights reserved.

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