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Day 235: He Deserves It

The Daily Word: Friday, August 23rd, 2019
Job 8:1-11:20
1 Corinthians 15:1-28
Psalm 38:1-22
Proverbs 21:28-29
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
Know therefore that God exacts from you less than your iniquity deserves. – Job 11:6b

Zophar was Job’s friend! But he gave Job some bad advice. He should have been supporting Job. But instead, the central theme of his message to his “friend” was, “Know therefore that God exacts from you less than your iniquity deserves.” In other words, he was saying, “Job, you deserve this.”

In fact, Job didn’t deserve his suffering. Job was righteous and blameless before God (Job 1:1, 8)! But whenever someone else goes through the wringer, our first tendency is to judge them. We assume they messed up. We assume they are getting what they deserve! Surely, we say, they must have done something to put themselves in that situation. We assume that the disaster that has just hit them can never hit us!

But the moment you point a finger and say, “That would never happen to me,” is the moment you make yourself the enemy’s next target. Pride says, “You deserve it” to someone else. But humility says, “I deserve it too.” You see, the problem with judging someone else is, you are just as sinful! Scripture says that we have all sinned (Rom 3:23), and the wages of sin is death (Rom 6:23)! All of us “deserve” calamity; and that is where Jesus comes in. He took our death and destruction on the Cross, so that you and I could walk free.

When you see someone really going through it: pray for them instead of judging them. You reap what you sow; and by withholding judgment, you will withhold yourself from judgment down the road.

Prayer:

Father, help me not to judge the people around me who are facing accusations and going through tribulations. I know I am guilty; but Jesus died to make me innocent. Without the Cross, I am nothing; but because of the Cross, I am free!

Archives
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© Michael D. White, 2019. All rights reserved.

Day 234: Within You

The Daily Word: Thursday, August 22nd, 2019
Job 4:1-7:21
1 Corinthians 14:18-40
Psalm 37:30-40
Proverbs 21:27
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
Is my strength the strength of stones? Or is my flesh bronze? Is my help not within me? And is success driven from me? – Job 6:12-13

Are you going through a tough time? Your strength is within you. When you gave your life to Jesus, His Holy Spirit made a home inside of you. The Holy Spirit is your helper. He is your friend! He is your strength! He knows everything you need to know, and He can do everything you need to do!

Don’t look to an external source of strength. You don’t need a conference, a new prophetic word, or even a podcast. The Kingdom of God is within you (Lk 17:21)! Ask the Holy Spirit to strengthen you, from the inside out, and be filled with motivation to overcome like never before!

Prayer:

Father, thank You for filling me with Your Holy Spirit! Thank You that my help – the Helper! – is within me. There is zero separation between my life and Your Holy Spirit; and that means victory is on the way, in Jesus’ name!

Archives
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© Michael D. White, 2019. All rights reserved.

Day 233: Live to Give

The Daily Word: Wednesday, August 21st, 2019
Job 1:1-3:26
1 Corinthians 14:1-17
Psalm 37:12-29
Proverbs 21:25-26
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
The desire of the lazy man kills him, for his hands refuse to labor. He covets greedily all day long, But the righteous gives and does not spare. – Prov 21:25-26

Do you live to give? Or do you live to get? Are you more focused on giving, or on getting? If you’re always focused on getting more for yourself, Scripture says there is a problem. If you’re always focused on giving more to others, Scripture says you are on the right track!

Jesus received much in His 33 years on earth. He received the anointing (Isaiah 6:1, Acts 10:38). He received worship from His disciples. He received favor from “God and men” (Lk 2:52). But far important than what He received, was what He gave. He came “…to give His life a ransom for many” (Matt 20:28, Mk 10:45). He came to lay down His life as a living sacrifice, so that you and I could walk in freedom when we believe in Him!

As a Christian, you should expect to be blessed! But the ultimate purpose of your life is to give. “The righteous gives and does not spare” (Prov 21:26). A righteous man is one who lives his life in complete service to God, holding nothing back. A righteous life is one lived in selfless submission to God, without reservation or second thought!

Are you ready to stop living to get, and start living to give?

Prayer:

Father, make me a giver. I am righteous in Christ; and that means I can give without sparing! Thank You that I don’t ever have to be afraid of running out of more to give. I know the more I pour out into others, the more You will pour into me, in Jesus’ name!

Archives
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© Michael D. White, 2019. All rights reserved.

Day 232: Cut Down

The Daily Word: Tuesday, August 20th, 2019
Esther 8:1-10:3
1 Corinthians 12:27-13:13
Psalm 37:1-11
Proverbs 21:23-24
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
A Psalm of David. Do not fret because of evildoers, nor be envious of the workers of iniquity. For they shall soon be cut down like the grass, and wither as the green herb. – Ps 37:1-2

Don’t worry about evildoers. God will make sure they are “cut down.” Vengeance is His, and He will repay (Rom 12:19)! If God is going to take care of the people who have not-so-nice things to say about you, do you know what that means? You don’t have to.

Make a decision not to worry about the people in your life who are out to get you. God will take care of them; and that means you don’t have to. Keep your eyes on Jesus. He has given you great work to do! And even so much as responding to people who don’t believe in you is nothing more than a waste of time.

So I sent messengers to them, saying, “I am doing a great work, so that I cannot come down. Why should the work cease while I leave it and go down to you?” – Neh 6:3

Prayer:

Father, thank You that I don’t have to waste time even thinking about people who are out to get me. I am going to fill my mind with thoughts of You! I say goodbye to every other thought, in Jesus’ name.

Archives
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© Michael D. White, 2019. All rights reserved.

Day 231: I Will Fast

The Daily Word: Monday, August 19th, 2019
Esther 4:1-7:10
1 Corinthians 12:1-26
Psalm 36:1-12
Proverbs 21:21-22
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
“Go, gather all the Jews who are present in Shushan, and fast for me; neither eat nor drink for three days, night or day. My maids and I will fast likewise. And so I will go to the king, which is against the law; and if I perish, I perish!” – Esther 4:16

This would be the most important day of Esther’s life. She would approach King Ahasuerus, and ask him to spare the Jewish people. It was illegal for Esther to enter the presence of the king. If anything went wrong, she would be executed. She knew what she had to do!

But before she did it, she insisted on doing one thing. “I will fast” (v 16). Esther would fast for three days; and she also asked everyone she knew to fast for her! Esther refused to go into the king’s presence without fasting first! Fasting positions you for favor. Fasting empties you of the things of this world, and focuses your attention on the things of God so you can make your requests with “the mind of Christ” (1 Cor 2:16).

Esther knew that how she prepared for her conversation with the king would be just as important as the actual words she used. Before you pray, are you positioning yourself through fasting? Are you fasting for other people who are seeking God for major things? Is fasting a consistent and persistent part of your life?

“However, this kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting.” – Matt 17:21

Prayer:

Father, I pray that fasting would be my immediate response to significant life events. When something goes well, I want to fast and praise You. When something goes wrong, I want to fast and seek You! I pray You would help me to make fasting a persistent part of my life, in Jesus’ name!

Archives
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© Michael D. White, 2019. All rights reserved.

Day 230: Over Your Head

The Daily Word: Sunday, August 18th, 2019
Esther 1:1-3:15
1 Corinthians 11:17-34
Psalm 35:17-28
Proverbs 21:19-20
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
Now when the turn came for Esther the daughter of Abihail the uncle of Mordecai, who had taken her as his daughter, to go in to the king, she requested nothing but what Hegai the king’s eunuch, the custodian of the women, advised. And Esther obtained favor in the sight of all who saw her. – Esther 2:15

Esther was in over her head! She was in a situation where what was at stake exceeded the degree to which she was prepared. But God did not leave her alone. He surrounded her with wise counsel! Mordecai told her what to say (Esther 2:10). Hegai told her what to bring (Esther 2:15)! And as a result, Esther was so pleasing to the king that he, “…set the royal crown on her head and declared her queen” (v 17).

Are you in over your head? Don’t panic. God will surround you with wise counsel. Open your ears to what wise men and women in your life have to say! Listen to people who have been there before. The result will be favor, not failure!

Prayer:

Father, I am in over my head! But I know You never leave me alone. You have surrounded me with wise counsel, and I thank you for it in Jesus’ name!

Archives
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© Michael D. White, 2019. All rights reserved.

Day 229: We Need Each Other

The Daily Word: Saturday, August 17th, 2019
Nehemiah 12:27-13:31
1 Corinthians 11:1-16
Psalm 35:1-16
Proverbs 21:17-18
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
For as woman came from man, even so man also comes through woman; but all things are from God. – 1 Cor 11:12

Men and women are different. God made men and women unique on purpose. We need each other. In verse 3, Paul clearly outlines the Biblical order:

But I want you to know that the head of every man is Christ, the head of woman is man, and the head of Christ is God. – 1 Cor 11:3

Our problem is that we tend to equate the “head” with “better than.” We recoil from this statement that “the head of woman is man,” because we think Scripture means to say that women are inferior to men. But that is not it at all! Can your body survive without your head? No! But can your head survive without your body? Absolutely not.

Does “the head of Christ is God” mean that Jesus is inferior to God? I don’t think so! Jesus said, “I and My Father are one” (John 10:30). But “the head of Christ is God” absolutely means that Jesus came to serve a unique purpose that would be forever celebrated in Heaven.

Men and women are different; and that is not a problem, it is an asset. We should be united but unique. We should celebrate our differences in unity! The same God made us all; and He does not make mistakes.

Prayer:

Father, help us to receive divine order. Help us to celebrate our differences! Thank You for the things that make each and every one of us unique. Help us celebrate our uniqueness as we live in unity, in Jesus’ name.

Archives
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© Michael D. White, 2019. All rights reserved.

Day 228: Open Eyes / Open Ears

The Daily Word: Friday, August 16th, 2019
Nehemiah 11:1-12:26
1 Corinthians 10:14-33
Psalm 34:11-22
Proverbs 21:14-16
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
The eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, and His ears are open to their cry. – Ps 34:15

When you’re righteous, God sees you. When you’re righteous, He hears you! So the only question that matters this morning is, are you righteous?

When you believe in Jesus, you are:

For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him. – 2 Cor 5:21

Do you believe in Jesus? If you do, the eyes of God are on you! He sees you in the midst of your struggle, and is ready to respond! Do you believe in Jesus? If you do, God’s ears are open to your cry. You get to have perfect confidence that whenever you pray, God hears your cry; and whenever He hears, He responds!

You are righteous. God sees you! He hears you! He knows you. And that means you have nothing to fear, in Jesus’ name!

Prayer:

Father, thank You for making me righteous in Jesus Christ. I know You see me. I know You know me! Thank You for hearing my prayers, in Jesus’ name!

Archives
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© Michael D. White, 2019. All rights reserved.

Day 227: Gracious and Merciful

The Daily Word: Thursday, August 15th, 2019
Nehemiah 9:22-10:39
1 Corinthians 9:19-10:13
Psalm 34:1-10
Proverbs 21:13
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
Nevertheless in Your great mercy You did not utterly consume them nor forsake them; For You are God, gracious and merciful. – Neh 9:31

The Levites were publicly reviewing the attributes of God for all of Israel to hear. They settled on two primary descriptors: “For you are God, gracious and merciful.” God is gracious! He is merciful! Are these the attributes you associate with God?

Grace and mercy are different; and you need them both! Mercy is protection from your past: God looks backwards and ensures you don’t get the bad things you do deserve. Grace is insurance for your future: God looks forwards and determines you do get the good things you don’t deserve! With God, your past and your future are covered! Whatever you need, He will provide!

Aren’t you glad you serve a gracious and merciful God? Aren’t you so happy He is the “same yesterday, today and forever” (Heb 13:8)? When you understand that God is both gracious and merciful, your relationship with Him will forever change:

Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need. – Heb 4:16

Prayer:

Father, thank You that You are gracious and merciful! When I need mercy to cover my past: You are there. When I need grace to give me confidence in my future: You are there! Whatever I need, You provide; and I thank You for it, in Jesus’ name!

Archives
See commentary from this day in 2014.
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© Michael D. White, 2019. All rights reserved.

Day 226: Work In Progress

The Daily Word: Wednesday, August 14th, 2019
Nehemiah 7:73-9:21
1 Corinthians 9:1-18
Psalm 33:12-22
Proverbs 21:11-12
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
The Lord looks from heaven; He sees all the sons of men. From the place of His dwelling He looks on all the inhabitants of the earth; He fashions their hearts individually; He considers all their works. – Ps 33:13-15

God cares about you. He is willing to take an active and present role in your life if you allow Him to! He sees you (v 13); and He “fashions” your heart.

Notice that the verb “fashions” is in the present tense. Yes, God formed you in your mother’s womb (Psalm 139:13; past tense). That is a completed action. But He is not done with your heart yet! He is willing to keep working with you. If you will let Him, He will fashion your heart every day. He will shape you and mold you from the imperfect person you are, into the child of God with a divine destiny whom He created you to be!

You are a work in progress. Don’t lose hope; because God is not finished with you yet.

Prayer:
Father, thank You for fashioning my heart. Thank You for forming me into the (wo)man You created me to be. You are working on my heart, every single day. Thank You for the active role You take in my life, in Jesus’ name!

 

Archives
See commentary from this day in 2014.
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© Michael D. White, 2019. All rights reserved.