OK, here's the plan (if God is willing):

1) Every day will be a new devotional. I have enough devotionals for every day for three years

2) Also as I can, I'll be posting on my new political blog (see bottom of page).

Some other housecleaning:

A) If you'd like to just get new postings sent to your email, just submit your address in the box on the left just below. There's just one possible downside, though. Occasionally I'll add a music video at the end that's relevant to the devotional, and you won't get them in the email sent to you. If I add a video though, I'll make sure to mention in the posting, so you'll know to come to the site to see it if you'd like.

B) I actually finished writing new blog posting for the TAWG at the end of 2016. So what I'm doing now is at the beginning of every month, I'll move the earliest month from 3 years ago ahead so that a "new" posting appears every day. That's why you won't find any postings for January 2014, for example.

C) When I started this Blog, I was using the 1984 edition of the NIV, and that’s what I linked to on the Biblegateway site. However, in 2011 Zondervan updated its edition and thus reworded a lot of the NIV translation. Therefore, all the links which went to the 1984 edition now redirect to the 2011 edition, which often has slightly different wording. Thus, part of my editing process has been to update my Scripture quotes in my postings. But I might have missed some, in which case you might see my quote in the posting as a little different from what comes up when you click on my citation link, since that redirects to the 2011 edition on the Biblegateway site. It's a good thing that we realize that the work of translation never ends, but it can be a kind of a pain on a site like this. If you see any difference in verbiage between my quote and what shows up as a link on the Biblegateway site, or if you hover over a link and it has "NIV1984" at the end of it, please notify me and I'll correct it.

D) I can't believe I have to say this, but here goes. At the end of every posting is a suggested short prayer that has to do with what we discussed. This is actually what I've prayed when I finished writing it. In no way am I asking you to pray the exact verbiage of my suggested prayer. It's just a springboard for your own prayer, nothing more. Quite frankly, I've never been a fan of praying rote prayers written by someone else. As with everything else I do here, to the degree it helps, great; to the degree it doesn't, chunk it.

As always, thank you so much for reading, even if it's to read one post. God bless.

[Mar 27]—A Transaction of Hope

            What do you consider the greatest act of faith in the Bible? Some might say it was Abraham about to sacrifice his son on the altar. Others say it was Israel crossing the Red Sea. Others might point to Joshua and Israel’s march around the city of Jericho, acting as if they already owned it and were just scoping out their territory. Those certainly were incredible acts of faith. But to me, today’s passage is just about the greatest one. First, let’s look at Jeremiah’s actions, and then I’d like to make my case that in some ways it was even greater than the acts of faith mentioned prior. And then I’d like to show why this is especially relevant to us today—maybe even more directly relevant than the others.
            These events happened during the last days of Judah as an independent nation. They'd rebelled against God and his ways one too many times, and now they were facing the final consequences. If you’ve been reading Jeremiah’s book, then you know who much “doom and gloom” was contained in his overall message. He'd predicted the Lord's judgment on Israel thru the nation of Babylon over and over and over and over. Now the capital city was under siege, and the time was quickly approaching in which everyone—from king down to beggar—would be subject to the tender mercies of the Babylonians.  
            And a word came from the Lord: “Your uncle is about to come to you (while you’re under house arrest) and offer you a chance to buy some land. You’re next in line to buy the land and redeem it so that it stays in the family. When he offers it, buy it.”
            Let’s ponder that for a moment. Jeremiah’s under house arrest, so he has no means of income, just some money he's saved up. The Babylonians are about to come in and take over. Do you think they give a rat’s behind as to who owns what land?! Of course not! They’re about to come in, take possession of everything, and parcel it out to whomever they please.
            When you’re in a city under siege, and you know that the enemy will succeed (which Jeremiah did), it’d be foolish in the extreme to give over hard currency (silver) for a land title that’s about to become worthless.           
            Unless…that’s what God told you to do. Then it’s the wisest thing you could do.
            Just like everyone else, he saw the Babylonian army at the gates. But Jeremiah knew something that his fellow countrymen couldn’t see: “Houses, fields and vineyards will again be bought in this land.” He knew from God Almighty that in just 70 years, the exiles would be released from captivity and would be allowed to return and rebuild their nation. That army that right now stood with its boot on the necks of every known nation in the world would—in 70 years, one generation or so—be overthrown. And he put his money where his mouth, or rather his faith—was.
            So why do I rank this the equal—or even higher—of Abraham’s faith, or Moses’ faith, or Joshua’s faith? Look, I’m not their judge. Maybe the Lord considers them to be greater. But I want to point out something: Each of these men had seen out and out miracles in their lives. Abraham had seen the destruction of Sodom and the birth of Isaac. Moses had seen countless miracles. Joshua as well.
            But Jeremiah? He’d seen visions, and he heard a voice, supposedly from God. Any spectacular miracles or signs or wonders? Not to my knowledge.
            All he had was the word of the Lord. He was sure God had spoken, and that was enough.
            My friend, I think that’s extremely relevant to us today. Sure, you might’ve seen God working providentially in your life. But have you seen anything on the scale of Moses or Joshua? Probably not. But you have the same thing Jeremiah had: God’s word.
            God has made lots of promises to you, and most of them haven’t been fulfilled yet, like the ones concerning your eternal home. But like Jeremiah, you can decide that you’re going to trust your Father. Despite what you’re seeing right now at this moment, you’re going to walk by faith, not by sight.
            Or not. The choice if yours.

Father God, I do trust you. Help me to trust you. And like Jeremiah, give me the strength to show my faith in tangible, sacrificial ways.  

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